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Sixteen girls went to Africa, as part of my schools "Girls gone Wild" program. It was were sixteen girls would go to a place in the world, each year, and, well, only fifteen came back healthy. One was bitten. It was a small bite, but it looked like a human had made it. Every media picture of it showed it pulsing, like something else, other then an animal bite, had happened to her.
That was the girls name. I knew her rather well, in fact. The reason I say knew, and not know, is because we parted ways six years ago, I went and became a jock; she hated any form of sports, then, from that seed, grew quite a bit of bitterness. At that point, we lost contact with each other. I decided, despite that, that the good thing to do would be to visit her.
“I’m off to see a movie!”
“I’ll decide when I get there!”
My mom would never let me go to see her, no matter what. So, I had to bullshit my way out of this one. I picked a movie I had already seen, but my mom didn’t know I saw. The Hobbit was the one I finally decided upon, and off I went. I was walking down the side walk, when I decided to check the news. I got my phone out, and opened up the News app.
It gave me a list of headlines. Most was stuff I did care about. Oh, another murder, well now, there was one the day before yesterday! Oh hey, the euro is falling in value, well, we don’t us euros in Canada, so, no concern. Stuff that either did not affect me, or that happened so much, no one cared. Only one caught my eye.
“Strange Animals have been sighted in africa “
I clicked on it, and activated Text-to-speech.
“In northern Africa, strange animal sightings have been reported, All describing the same thing: A hunched-over humanoid, with pale skin, large white yes, and eight two –to-three foot long claws. Some who have seen it say to bears an almost uncanny resemblance to ‘The Rake’, a modern day myth of a creature that stalks and kills humans. Biologists say that no animal that bears those features has been ever found. People who have seen this animal are told to report to the police as soon as they can. Only one picture has ever been taken of this animal-” I looked at my phone, to see if there was a picture.It was a hazy, pixelated picture, of something that looked human, but it was not…right, in some way. I saw the hospital by then, and I went to the front desk.
“Hello, sir, may I help you?”
“I’m looking for Samantha Watt.”
“Fourth floor, third door to the left.”
“Thanks.” I went up the elevator, and then to that door, I knocked, and allowed myself in, I was fairly sure she knew I was coming.
“Hello?” She said, somewhat weakly, then, looked shocked. “James?” she exclaimed, with the joy bursting through her face.
“The one and only, Sam.” I said, with no real thought behind it, it just kinda came out. She the almost crying, she was so happy to see me. Then, suddenly, her joy turned into fear, like she had seen a ghost behind me. Her face turned white, and she began to cry. “Sam? What is going on?”
“James, you’re the only one who will believe me, and I don’t even think you will.” She seemed to be trying to tell me something that even she could not admit to herself. I motioned for her to spit it out after all, The Hobbit was only three hours, and I spent about fifty minutes getting there.
“Remember a few years back, on the camping trip, I told you about The Fears?” Ha. Them, The Fears where psychical manifestations of one of humankind’s fears, such as illness or death. I nodded, and I thought I knew where she was going with this. “They are not just stories made-up for people to read, James. They are REAL.” The way she said “Real” unnerved me. I could tell if someone was joking for not, if I knew them well enough. That was full, pure, distilled honesty.
“So…A Fear…what happened?” I said, although I was somewhat sure she was not lying, they could be real, only to her. Insanity, I guess, would be used to describe that.
“I can hardly remember, James. I was in Africa, preparing for the night, and, I went outside. After a quick walk, I heard rustling, and, a few moments later, something, it looked human…but…wrong…like it had been hit by a semi or something. I went up to it, it screeched at me, and attacked me. Less than a second later, I had a bite, which is now infected, and kept seeing…things…like…my worst nightmare come to life, and playing before my eyes. I am scared James. It sounds insane, I know but…I saw the Rake.” I stifled a laugh. I tried to lay out all the facts before me. And…here they were.
1. Sam is hurt
2. Sam saw something
3. Sam got attacked
4. Sam is most likely going insane
“Yep” I thought “This was the girl you had a crush on in grade school, James. She is now insane.” I said, however “Well, sucks for you then, I wish I could help.”
“You can help, James,” I thought “How can I? Do you want me to help out of the rabbit hole?”
She continued “Help me kill it.” Okay. My turn to turn pale. And, I did turn pale. I know one thing about Fears. They cannot die. They just…can’t. If you manage to defeat one, they still live, they just go to sleep for s bit, from my knowledge.
“What is it, James? You hunt grouse, why should this be any different? Just another trophy, if you kill it.” Yes. IF I KILL IT. Most likely, it would have my head above the fireplace, not the other way around!
“A shotgun would do NOTHING against the Rake, Sam. It might hurt it, but then it would just make my death slower.” I just said, quite flatly. As if I knew this for sure. “I will help you, however, when you get you of the hospital.” She smiled weakly.
“Oh James, how the years have gone by, true? After all, a few years ago, you would have started helping me, by breaking me out of the hospital.” I grinned, she was right, of course. I used to be more daring, and more adventurous. That was before I almost got my head caved in during football practice. I got up, and left, I checked the time, and realized I needed to kill about an hour and a half more. So, I just wandered the city, taking in all the sights, smells, and, maybe shamefully for me, the foods.
Three crepes, six chocolate bars and one large cup of coffee later. I wound up back at home. My mom started to talk to me.
“How was it?”
“Great, I think Tolkien would be proud.”
“Sorry mum, no spoilers.” I just went upstairs to my best friend, my computer. I logged on, and quickly went online, just hoping my mom would not interrupt me with chores, or some question involving The Hobbit. I quickly typed into the searchbar, “The Rake” and clicked the first link, “The Rake-The Slenderman Wiki” and, then, after a few seconds, the dark website backround appeared, quickly followed by the page I wanted. After reading it, and being very deeply disturbed.
I noticed something. A Chat feature. I clicked on a small blue button that said “Join the Chat” and a little message popped up, saying I had to have an account to join the chat. No harm in making one, so, I did, and dubbed myself “Jamenil” I really could not think of a name, so I put the first thing that popped into my head, which was, Jamenil. Then, I joined the Chat. Three other users where on, and they went by: Cursor-The-Selfish, Dawnoutofnowhere, and Rogue Shadow 43.
For some reason, they continually put “*pushes X into the lake” or “*pulls X into the lake*” I just typed in: “Hello, everyone, what is going on?”. No one responded. I waited, and waited, and waited. “Hello, could someone tell me what is going on?” no one responded. Finally, I said “I need help, my friend is in trouble, and I think you guys might help me.” From there on, the chat seemed to die and no one responded.
“Well?” asked one of them. I typed in very quickly “My friend thinks they saw The Rake.”
“Can you get them on?” appeared on the chat, courtesy of Cursor.
“No, they are in hospital, I am sorry.”
“Well, can you tell us what happened?” was Dawn’s response.
“I cannot really say, after all, I was not there. But, as far as she will tell me, it just jumped out and attacked her.”
“Well, she is now a Runner, and I don’t think I can help you.” Said Cursor.
“Someone that is running from a Fear, and will ultimately fail.” Came again from Cursor.
Yet again, what I thought and what I said were two different things I was thinking “Well, you’re a downer, aren’t you”, what I put was:
“Thanks. Cursor, if I may ask,” I pressed enter by accident, so it got posted before I could complete my sentence.
“My name is not Cursor.” Was the reply, in less than one second, really, fast response, and whoever it was seemed offended by my calling of them that.
“What is it, then?” I replied, just as fast.
“Kiba, just call me that.” Odd name, I thought.
“I must question the logic of giving yourself a name you do not want to be called by.”
“It is a long story, just trust me, you do not wanna here it.”
“Alrighty then, then I shall not hear it.” Wow…well, they were not help at all, and, I really did not like them, so, I just quit the chat and checked the time. It was, shockingly, almost 4:30 P.M, and I really just realized that I had to do something important that my mom told me to do.
“James? Have you put out the Garbage?”
“Get to that then, will ya?” Well, if I argued, then I would be grounded, or something along those lines. So, I just took out the trash and decided to check the news, to see if anything concerning Sam came up. I flipped open my phone, and checked the news. Nothing at all. I just played Angry Birds to pass the time. No matter how much I played that game, I loved seeing the birds fly and somehow set off the conveniently-placed TNT charge.
I started to get a headache. I looked in the mirror, to see if I had gone pale or something along those lines. Nope, that was not it, I was not sick. I wandered into the bathroom, feeling like crap.
“Oh god…oh god…worst headache of my life…ow…ow…ow…” I looked through the medicine cabinet, looking for the glorious pill known as Aspirin. Alas, none was found. I just fell over, the headache got worse every minute, so, I just stumbled back into my room, and flopped on the bed, trying to force the pain to go away.
It did not. It was a good ten minutes until I was able to stand up, it hurt far too much for any sane person to want to move.
“Ow..ow…ow…ow…ow…” Is all I could say, the pain was still like a blunt, rusty nail going through my head. It hurt a lot. And even that is an understatement. My mom must have heard me, because she came up, and asked what was wrong.
“I got the mother of all headaches…” She laughed, she thought that I over-exaggerated everything, meaning I only had, according to her, a slight pain. I stood up…and fell down…yep…bad headache. No aspirin. Now all I needed was a pop quiz in math, and my day in hell would be complete. No…not true…a pop quiz in math, and cold coffee, and it would be complete.
I needed sleep, but the headache did not permit that. I needed aspirin, but, none of that was in my house. So, I just lay there and groaned in pain. After a while, thanking whoever may be up there, the headache was gone. I got up, and went downstairs .I helped my mom make supper, by making the gravy and carving the chicken. I was still trying to figure out what the hell happened for my headache.
During supper, there was an awkward silence.
“So…how was your day?”
“Meh…could have been better.”
“I don’t know, it just could have been better.” I left the table after that, and I worried the rest of the night. What if Sam was not mad? What if she was telling the truth, but I was too stubborn to listen? What if, what if, what…if…what if, what if. What if’s ran through my head all night, and by the time I managed to get to sleep, it was time for me to wake up. I run to school, and I tried to make it on time. Alas, I failed, and got there about ten minutes late.
Then I slapped my forehead in shame…yesterday was Friday.
And the end note
Any feedback, anyone? Any improvments to be made? Feel free to tell me, no matter how minor.