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Raph Howse 2019

The Thing

It was a dark and stormy night, I figured it was just regular Melbourne weather but thinking back on it I must have felt as if something wasn’t right. I felt pretty uncomfortable, usually the rain on the roof sends me straight off but I was feeling increasingly uneasy. The lightning crashed dramatically, man, sometimes it sucks being home alone. I check my watch and it’s 4am, I groan. I can’t get to sleep so I figure I’ll just grab something to eat upstairs. Another flash of lightning sends the lights out and I hear a bang from outside, I tell myself Its just the window banging in the wind. The next-door neighbour’s dog starts barking as I continue down stairs. I get to the kitchen and the lights flicker on again, I hear a strange noise outside I figured it was just the wind again. The dog stops barking suddenly and I hear It whine followed by an eerie silence. The hairs on the back of my neck stand up. I open up the fridge and all of a sudden, the jars start rattling, the wind starts moaning and another clap of thunder sends the lights flickering again, something brushes my leg. Now I am not the kind that scares easily but this made me jump out of my skin. I scream and look down, I know I don’t want to see what’s there but I do it reflexively to see my cat against my leg purring. I sigh out of relief but as I do a hand goes over my mouth. I try to bite them but the grip is too tight, the hand tastes like hair and blood. I feel a knife point against my back and get wrenched away from the fridge. I’m dragged to the door of the kitchen. Then there is a knock on the door and whatever is trapping me stops in it’s  tracks. An answer comes in  booming voice “This is the police!” I am pulled over to the window, the thing is so strong it doesn’t feel human. It pulls me through the window and even though we’re on the third floor we land without a scratch. It goes to pull me across the tram tracks and down an alleyway. It’s too dark to see but it throws me against the wall It pulls out it’s knife and it’s about to stab me but I hear a shout from the other end of the alleyway. The police! I hear them yell “There they are!” “Oh god what is that thing?!” The thing turns towards the flashing red and blue lights of police cars. But it wasn’t over yet. It charged as a last resort and jumps over the blockade. For the next few moments time slows down, I’m flying through the air, one of the cops pulls out a shot gun and fires it. A terrible moaning erupts from the beast’s mouth. I feel the grip loosen and as it falls to the ground it slings me forward, onto the tracks, right in front of a tram. Everything goes black I hear a loud beeping noise, it gets louder and louder, I wake up in a cold sweat, my alarm clock beside me reading 6:00, was it all a dream? I hear a creaking upstairs, lightning crashes and the neighbour’s dog starts barking, only to be silenced with a whine. I pinch myself, I feel nothing, I pinch myself again and wake up, I look at my alarm clock, It’s 4:05 this is going to be a long night.

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