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by Gerardo Montes AKA Scartissue

The rain was falling hard on the roof, each drop hitting hard on the ceiling and then sliding down my window to die between the grasses. I closed the curtains and sat on my bed. I lay down and tried to sleep, the tapping of the rain against the window drove my mind to a state of near unconsciousness, my body sinking in a sea of thoughts and images. I was brutally shaken out of my thoughts by a thunder to find myself sitting on the edge of my bed, all covered in sweat. I realized that I had been caught off guard by the thunder in such a manner that my heart moved its dwellings to my throat and the hair on the back of my head had risen up. My mind began to wander again, in a state of relaxed ecstasy, resting, sleeping.... Again! Another thunder, this one like I had never heard before, brought me back to reality; once again, caught off guard and thrown into a mental condition of unexplainable horror and despair!

I tried to pull myself and my thoughts together. It is only a thunder, go back to sleep. I reassured myself until the words melted down and lost all sense. I realized I wouldn't be able to sleep until the storm was over so I turned on the light and got up for a midnight snack.

I didn't make it to the kitchen.

The hallway and the stairs looked as if someone or something would grab me and slit my throat the moment I walked through its darkness. Scared as I was, I didn't even try to switch the hallway lights on. I didn't dare to partially abandon the safety of my room. My room was my haven against whatever lurked in the darkness. Still, the atmosphere in the room was unbearable. The silence, occasionally interrupted by the thunder, did nothing to sooth my mood but to add on the feeling that something was about to happen. That was when I turned on the radio.

The sound of static broke the silence. I began to change the frequency: news, interviews, country music. There was nothing that could calm my agitated mind. I kept on turning the button, in a feverish way, as if my sanity depended on it. My hand kept on turning the button until all I could hear was static. I kept going. Suddenly, the static stopped and I stopped. The thing I heard was the most strange and horrifying. It was a squelching sound, like a rock being pulled out of a pond. Like blood being sucked out of a vein. It was accompanied by some kind of mumbling that completely drained the remaining courage and will out of me. Still, I couldn't find the strength to shut the radio down. I couldn't do a thing but listen!

The squelching and mumbling grew louder. I thought I was accidentally turning the volume on; I wasn't. It grew louder and louder. I covered my ears in a futile attempt to stop the noise from pouring into my brain. Yet, the sound kept on increasing its volume and it poured into my mind like a torrent of corrosive words that made no sense at all. My head was about to explode and I tried to choke myself with a pillow so that I could find some peace among the dead. I fainted, but the sound was still there, embedded somewhere in my subconscious mind. My head finally exploded into fragments of light and thought.

I woke up, a few hours later; not knowing whether last night had really happened or had been nothing but a nightmare. When I woke up and turned to my left side, I saw a radio and a man with a pillow on his face. Dead.

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