June 26, 2015

Missing Rachel - Entry I: Waking Into the Nightmare

Missing Rachel
Entry I: Waking Into the Nightmare
Location: The House
Date: Friday, June 19th, 2015

Ughh… I let out a long groan. My head, oh my head, it feels like someone tried to bash it in. And why is it so dark? I groped around in the darkness trying to get my bearings when I felt something by my feet. My hands slipped over a metal tube and depressed a button. A beam of light illuminated from one end of the metal cylinder. I moved the flashlight back and forth, sweeping the area with light, trying to find out where I was. I didn’t recognize the house I found myself in. As my eyes scanned the room for clues, I saw a crumpled mass lying in the corner of the room. I kept staring and staring until I realized what it was… a person… covered in blood. I scrambled to my feet, revolted by the sight of the dead body and almost dropped the flashlight. That was when I saw that my hands were covered in blood. Was it my blood or his?

I needed to get out of the room, out of this house, and figure out what the hell was going on. As I reached the door, I came across a desk tucked into the corner opposite of the body. I wanted to leave but I also had to find out what was going on and who that man is… was. I didn’t want to snoop but I opened the desk drawers anyway, finding pens and receipts. Then, in the back I found a blurry photo that showed a store of some kind. I don’t know why but it looked so familiar. I scurried out of the room and into the hall. I was hit with the smell of fresh blood and it was sickening. I shined the flashlight down the hallway and saw the red liquid smeared across the right side wall. There was a trail of blood leading into the room I had just left and as I followed the trail with my eyes, I glanced down at myself, my boots and pants were stained with blood. Oh man, I had to get out of there.

I didn’t notice until I was running down the stairs that I was limping. How I hurt my leg, I didn’t know, but the searing pain told me that it was a new injury. What the hell was going on?! The last thing I could recall was coming home and seeing Rachel. I was angry, she looked afraid. A sharp pain flashed across my eyes, argh my head. I shook it to try and clear the pain away but to no avail. I didn’t know what was going on but I knew I had to find a way out of here. Downstairs looked just like the upstairs, average sans the blood and dead body. I heard a strange scratching sound and tried to locate the source. What I found was a thin, grey mouse who was struck in a trap. It looked frantic but exhausted, just like how I felt. I carefully freed the mouse and it scampered away. Why was I wasting energy on a mouse? Maybe I thought he was like me and could use a little help right about now.

I headed down another hall and came across a collection of rusty tools. Shovels, pickaxes, all of them looked like they had seen a lot of use and were caked in damp-smelling dirt. Why weren’t these in a shed? I moved farther down the hall and found a picture of a couple hanging crookedly on the wall. I went to grab it so I could take a closer look but I knocked the frame off the wall and it crashed to the floor. The sound startled me and I whipped around to see if the din had caused anything to stir in the house. When I realized I was alone, I looked back at the wall where the picture had hung and saw what could only be described as a button. Strange, why would someone have something like this hidden behind a picture? I couldn’t resist the temptation and slowly pushed the button. At first, I didn’t think anything had happened until I heard a faraway metal click.

I limped down the hallway towards where I thought the sound had originated. I passed a bookcase filled with books on hunting and local history, it seemed like the owner of the house really knew the area. I entered the dining room and saw an old table covered in dirty dishes for two. Two? There was only one body. Dozens of beer cans and other liquor bottles were intermingled amongst the dishes and lying on the floor. The smell of rotting food was turning my stomach and I quickly moved away from the dining room table. There was a black-and-white photo of a man and woman set on a serving cart. It looked like the man upstairs and his wife, maybe? If she was his wife, where is she now? There was no reason for me to keep the photo but I took it anyway, folding it neatly and placing it into my pocket. I hoped the photo might help me find some answers.

I went into the bathroom and got the first real glimpse of my current state. I looked like hell, my clothes were dirty and torn, my boots were covered in mud and blood, and there was a trail of blood running from the back of my head down my shirt. After I absorbed the shock of my appearance, I noticed how spotless the bathroom was. I wondered if the man’s wife was the one that did the cleaning or was it him. There was a photo developing tray lying on the floor near the bathtub. There were leftover negatives sticking out but they were pretty blurry. I saw what looked like treetops in one photo. I exited the bathroom and headed towards the front door. I thought I had finally reached freedom from the nightmare house but only found it blocked by a wall of stacked furniture. In my current state, there was no way I could move the blockage myself so I turned around and tried to pry open a window. They had all been sealed shut by nails, both from the inside and outside. With no other option, I walked towards the kitchen.

There I found sheets of paper strewn across the small kitchen table. It looked like there were a series of names written down in blue ink but the paper was too smudged to read. The only thing I could make out was a few scattered notes.
--keycard-- --ocker--
--last one-- I promise--
It didn’t make much sense to me at the time. I spotted a door that led to the downstairs basement. It was damp and smelled like mildew. I spied a box lying in the middle of the room, it looked heavy but there were marks on the floor, like it had been moved before. I heaved the box forward, and it finally gave way. Underneath where the box used to sit, was a ladder that led to an underground chamber. The dank smell that rose from the passage was even worse now. I didn’t want to climb down the ladder into the unknown darkness but I couldn’t stay in this house any longer either. I had no choice, the front door was barricaded shut and I was unable to pry any of the windows open. If I wanted to escape and figure out what had happened to me, I’d have to go down that ladder. More importantly, it was the only chance I had of seeing Rachel again. I took a deep breath and began to descend into the darkness.