When My Girlfriend Sleeps
My girlfriend has, for nearly 2 years, been trying to convince me to move in with her. At first my response was “no” but eventually it softened into “soon”. Dates were made and passed, fights were had and lost. And the time was approaching where I’d eventually have to move in with her. It came closer and closer with the rush of autumn air.
As a scientist I feel solace in being the vanguard of the truth and the truth was: things were not perfect.
I had actually stayed over as little as humanly possible and the reason was pretty simple.
The place was haunted. Simple enough reason I suppose. But for a scientist hauntings not only don’t exist but aren’t an excuse.
This wasn’t however a blur in the corner of my eye or some specter standing over me for a brief moment while I left REM sleep. It wasn’t someone’s voice calling from another room or objects going missing. This was a fully realized nightmare that would unfold in front of me like clockwork.
The level of centralized sinister that survives in her apartment, specifically her bedroom, is actually what baffles me the most. Although the condo was purchased at an estate sale, the previous owner did not parish in it. The condo itself used to be a hospital in the 80’s though that still wouldn’t quite explain the ghastly apparitions that appeared at night.
The worst part is my girlfriend has seemingly no idea.
Not a clue.
And for reasons I will explain… I have not told her.
As a scientist allow me to set the “mise en scene” as I recount my lurid almanac of phantoms.
At night she places her head on her pillow and falls asleep nearly instantaneously. She only ever wakes up when sunlight spreads through the window and onto her thin eyelids.
When I lay there in the darkness for hours on end, I look around her room and am surrounded by phenomenon. I’m slowly falling into madness as each night I lay in a state of fear-ridden paralysis. I’ve been practicing taking notes in my head while in this state in order to compose some kind of document. I feel like a wild life explorer making notes on the rare plant I found. Let me map up the psychosis as best as possible starting with my right side.
The bloated wall.
The bloated wall is aptly named because it bloats. It looks like someone hid a body behind it, and that said corpses decomposing fumes has made the wall swell. We actually have no idea why the wall is like that but, given my knowledge of construction, I couldn’t muster a guess. It’s inflated in such a way that the drywall should have cracked but structurally still strong to suggest that it wasn’t previously water damage. Furthermore there is no support beam behind the bloating. It’s a project that my girlfriend doesn’t want me to tackle in fear that the plaster filled air might make her nose bleeds return. At night however the wall… begins to breathe.
It inhales and exhales like a chest cavity producing the sound of wind passing through a dead tree. Bizarrely the walls breathing configuration never aligns with my girlfriends. It almost insultingly wants to breathe at a different rate and interval pattern. For those who loathe repetition or noises that continue to make themselves noticed, like me, you will understand how you slowly feel your sanity drain. I did drill a small hole at the baseboard and stuck an endoscope inside to get a glimpse. There was nothing inside. Occasionally when I have had small moments of terror in the night the bloating wall will mimic an exasperated breathing diaphragm. The bloated wall has never concerned me.
Continuing to the right is a window where another spirit draws my attention.
The maiden of the veil.
The white bands of cloth that makes up our curtains could not be any more ordinary. But these curtains shifts without a breeze. It was a nearly unperceivable at first. I had no idea that something was even remotely wrong. Given that every other part of my room was unbearable to look at, the white drapes seemed like a reasonable place for my eyes to go. After I had gone for eye surgery to help correct a small issue I had with distinguishing pigment it became very clear that she had been making herself known, I just couldn’t see it. With the colour red now more vivid to my eyes I could sadly see more than I ever wanted to in the drapes. They would bleed from the curtains rods all the way to the floor and then vanish and reset. Hand prints in blood would appear, as if she’s pulling the drapes, then evaporate just as another would weep with cherry. I felt like the curtains were a prison for her based on my analysis of how the blood prints formed suggested that she just paced back and forth with occasional bursts of rage. During a lighting storm her silhouette becomes perfectly visible. She wears a bride’s dress which makes little difference as, with each flash of lightning I could also see her skeleton and even her crimson circulatory system. The veins like sore bolts of lightning clustered in a human shape. I don’t know if I should fear her or feel bad for her.
If I continue to the corner of the room, directly ahead of myself.
The madness spirit.
A black cloud floats in the corner ceiling. Nothing but obscure smoke could be seen no matter how hard I try and inspect its dark form. It does however have a face with which it tries to grab my attention. It’s a skull, with a perfectly circular hole right through the center as if canon had comically shot through it. Only the bottom jaw really suggests that it was human. The problem is that once you focus on the skull voices start to creep into you head. At first the voices were familiar and charming. I understood very little as they spoke in many different languages, some Germanic and some Latin. Although words could not be deciphered they soon became noises and sounds. Eventually the sounds evolved into pure projected feelings as if someone was transferring unadulterated willpower. They would begin begging and pleading for me to kill my loved ones. Worst of all the voices would slowly turn into the loved ones doing the pleading. I learned this rather fast and chose to not ever let my eyes focus on the creature. It will however shift its head within its cloudy frame of smoke to try and get your attention. Every time the skull moves it sounds like an egg shell slowly cracking.
Moving onto the center of the room, directly in front of me.
An odd French provincial dress with a rather ornate mirror which we purchased in the summer at a garage sale came with a unique feature. A little girl with black hair and empty eye sockets that leak tar continues to peak from the corners of the mirror. If I make eye contact with her she immediately ducks out of frame. Seemly harmless at first, she was slightly amusing in a horrific way compared to the other horrors. Occasionally a child’s laughter would wake me at night. One night in particular I had seen her hand pass through the mirror and grab a stuffed animal off the dresser and pull it back into her world. The stuffed plushy has not been returned. The plushy was worth losing if only to know that the creature was not trapped. Sporadically I will find messages written in an icey fog on the mirror asking for me to “come play”. Very soon I realized that there were in fact multiple children in the mirror world. I’ve seen nearly 5 at one time peering into my bedroom before ducking. I have theorized that their invitation to play may in fact be how each one got converted to a mirror dweller. More eerily there may be more of these mirrors and the addition children I’m seeing are merely conquests from elsewhere. I have yet to figure out why they cry tar but given their home is a mirror I fear it may stem from looking into the reflection for too long. The only evidence I have for a poisonous reflection is the veining around their eye cavity which looks like infected. Moving onto the left side of the room.
To the left of the dresser is a small empty space followed by the entrance to our room. Surrounding our entire room is a heating system. The water heating radiator makes up all the baseboards of the room and has a nearly endless supply of creepy sounds. During the night a rather pale hand with varicose veins starts to extend from out of the vent. It comes from a seemingly impossible crack and bends at an absurd inhuman angle. The hand at first was slightly baffling as it reached in a virtually frozen position never extending past its initial entrance into the room. It wasn’t until I awoke during an early morning that I discovered the arm had stretched nearly 2 meters in its goal to reach my bed. The fingers had elongated as well, each as long as a chopstick. It did not waver or grow tired of its position, though the fingers did bob and sway as it trying to pull itself towards me. I had once made the mistake of getting up to go to the bathroom and, even though I was inches away, the hand swiped to grab me. The hand has never extended even remotely close enough to be an actual threat but I do fear that it may be getting a tiny bit closer each night. When dawns light touches the hand it snakes back rather quickly into the heater. I dread to think if I place the new highboy in front of it when I move in, the hand might try and come out of vent somewhere else. And finally there is the closet…
The left side of the room is entirely a mirrored closet with enormous sliding doors. At 3 in the morning every single night, the closet door slides open. A closet door does not provide the eerie creaking that the conventional hinged door does however like Pavlov’s dog my heart would race. The sound was sterile and clean. If a human had opened it the vibrations would cause the mirror to quake and thus would produce a thundering sound. In the darkness of my closet an angelic woman would be kneeling with her arms open to accept me. Her face would read of acceptance and longing but her eyes filled with sadness. Her entire form would glow the most divine shade of white and yellow but provide no light for the rest of the closet, nor would her luminesce enter the rest of my room. Every time the door opens it’s a new radiant woman. Not long after the door slides open, maybe 20 minutes later, it slides shut. Behind the door I can hear for a brief moment horrific muffled screams which ceases almost instantly. As frightening as this is, the reoccurrence has allowed me to notice something that I hadn’t originally. Since the woman is kneeling your attention is drawn away from the perfect white smile that hovers behind her. The Cheshire grin is accompanied by a pair of normal white eyes with pin holes for pupils. There is no face, just eyes and a mouth. They just stare down psychotically waiting. It isn’t till the closet door closes that the frozen eyes and mouth turn angry. The angler demon, much like an angler fish, seems to use spirits as bait to lure people in. Given the changing in women I have no idea what happens to them.
So why haven’t I told my girlfriend? Why have I allowed her to sleep with unknown horrors surrounding her?
I’d love to tell you that I too am one of the horrors haunting the room, a guardian angel of a dead boyfriend past. Alas I am alive and well.
I’d also love to say that she is perhaps the spirit of a love one trapped like sleeping beauty and that my only time with her is during these awful nights. She is very much human and healthy.
I wish that I could blame my silence on the powers of one of the sinister creatures. Lie and say that one of them has been using its manipulative tactics to mute me.
While recently taking a trip for our anniversary, we sat in a hotel room. I thought for a moment about telling her. I had planned my wording very carefully but new that without the aid of the spirits to show her, the knowledge might be fruitless. I kissed her good night and we both tried to sleep. As always she was out instantly.
It was in that moment that I realized that the problem was far worse than I had imagined. As we laid in the hotel room I could hear the wall beside her start to bloat and breath. I could see in the corner of the room a black fog begin to form. Another floor vent began to shift as a pale hand extended out from it. There were no curtains but I could see hand prints of blood begin to form on the window. The room’s closet door opened as suspected and the angler ghost presented its bait. Like clockwork the phenomena had followed her.
It wasn’t till the next day that I also found droplet of tar in the bathroom indicating that the little girl had found the nearest portal to be a voyeur.
It was in that moment that I realized I could not tell her. That she could not outrun these demons that had chained themselves to her. She was a living haunted house.
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