Hidden camera mens restroom

(Paid Content) I enter the dressing room with two shirts and a pair of $10 black tights in my hands. Before I unzip my jeans, I scan the four angular corners of the ceiling. No surveillance cameras. Below, we’ve listed nine common shoplifting techniques that police and security staff watch for. Concealing items. One of the most common techniques used by shoplifters to remove goods from a store is to conceal items within their clothing, purses, backpacks, strollers, umbrellas, and other personal items. She’s been seriously shoplifting for less than three years, but doing it so regularly that she’s already amassed over $10,000 worth of stolen merchandise, and all without being stopped by security even once. I sat down with Jane to find out how she does it and what advice she has for kids new to the game. Being a girl, she only lifts ... Shoplifting tools can also extend from the traditional booster bag or clothing to equipment used to remove tags, replace bar codes, or even perpetuate return fraud. The list of items used as shoplifting tools is ever-expanding and always creative. Shoplifting Tools. A stroller, cart, or wheelchair can be used to store stolen items. The Shoplifting Master List. Please note: A new and up to date master list has been completed. The information on this page has not been updated since /r/Shoplifting still existed, making this information obsolete and historical. Please refer to the new Master List for newer information, as well as new stores. Martin's has a large management team at every store. Common anti theft techniques are used. Blind Spots: Blind spots are common. Tagging: Tagging does not exist. Walkouts vs Conceals: Any method works as long as you play it smart. Not too hard if you know what you're doing. Meijer: (6/10) Cameras: Cameras are monitored frequently. Newspapers can be strategically rolled up, leaving a gap for the purpose of shoving small items in the gap that is created. In this way, shoplifters have another method of concealing stolen items. Strollers – Another popular method of shoplifting is the use of baby strollers. Money Saving – Shoplifting Tips – Top-3. Here are my top shoplifting tips. I’ve honed and refined this list over the years to boil it down to just the top-3: Do NOT shoplift in department stores – There is too much security through CCTV. Also, mall cops are generally not people you want to mess with as they can be pretty dangerous if ... Hiding merchandise is the most common method of shoplifting. Items are concealed in the clothing of the shoplifter, in handbags, strollers, umbrellas, or inside purchased merchandise. Bold shoplifters may grab an item and run out of the store. Other methods include price label switching and attempting to short-change the cashier. 4 Of The Most Common Shoplifting Techniques Explained June 6, 2017. By MA Security Group. Despite the advancements in security technology, it doesn’t appear to be halting retail theft. In fact shoplifting continues to be a huge problem and just last year alone it cost Australian retailers over 4 billion dollars.

2020.09.19 10:41 homemadedrugs Hidden camera mens restroom

Hi everyone, these tips are some of the best ways to lift from stores. I haven't seen a shoplifting masterpost on this subreddit (correct me if I'm wrong) so I thought I’d share.
Also y'all have probably heard this a million times but only lift from big companies, and never lift from small / local businesses who depend on their sales.
Blind Spot A blind-spot is a section of the store where you are barely visible by any cameras or employees and can thus feel free to both collect and dump stuff, without fear of being seen. Make sure your blind-spot is not under surveillance. Never do anything where someone else may see you, even a customer. You can make your own spot inside a shopping cart with large packages to conceal your movements or use display units to your advantage. Also, a friends body can be used to block viewing. You will always want to act quickly once you have entered your blind spot and never grab an item and walk straight to your area. Shop your way into it like you need something from there and then shop your way out like you did nothing wrong. Never hang around your blind-spot for too long and don’t keep using the same spot, especially if you are leaving opened packages. Most of all, be careful to never lead Loss Prevention to your blind-spot and remember that Loss Prevention will know their store better than you and will already know where all the blind spots are.
Dressing Room After selecting clothes you head to the Dressing Room to try them on. While your in there you decide that instead of purchasing them, you’re going to shoplift them. This can be easily done in the privacy of this little room as long as you know what you're doing. The inside of dressing rooms will normally not be monitored by Loss Prevention. If they do they have to have a sign saying that “Dressing Rooms are monitored” for it to be legal. Also, most dressing rooms are not 100% private. A lot of times the door or curtain stops about 2 feet from the floor giving Loss Prevention an opportunity to observe some of your actions, especially with a small shoe mirror. Regardless of all of this, you’re going for it and there are several ways you could go about concealing your items.
First thing you do is to remove any security tags on the clothes. Removing tags is discussed in the ‘Tools of the Trade’. The most common way to obtain your new clothes would be to place them into another stores bag that you walked in with. Second would be to wear the new cloths under what you are already wearing or fold them up and tape them to your body. You could also just exchange the old clothes you are wearing for new ones (not recommend). Remember to never leave any tags or hangers behind unless there are already hangers or clothes in the room, which you can use to hide . Otherwise, you will be alerting the staff that you took something. Some store count the clothing going in and out of the dressing room. To get around this, hide pieces of clothing under more visible ones, or conceal clothes in a tote bag at a blind spot and bring it with you to the stall.
Body Stuffing This is a common technique used by women. With a dress on they will take an item and hold it between their thighs and walk out. Also you could have a inflatable ball so that you appear pregnant. Gather clothes and go into a dressing room, deflate the ball and place the cloths in its place, so that you still appear pregnant. Men could taking some small expensive items and place them in the small of your back. Wearing a tight shirt tucked in with a baggier outer shirt would help conceal any item. Clothes can be wrapped and taped around your torso and your legs while wearing bagger clothes. Remember you have to be able to walk out the door without arousing suspicion.
The Drink Cup Concealment A large drink is purchased and then brought into the store. You then proceed to drop small heavy items like jewelry into the drink cup. On leaving the store the drink cup is unlikely to be searched. You must be wary of drinking too much or the items will be revealed in the bottom of the cup.
Sleight of hand This is a technique used to manipulate items by secretly palming them and hiding the items out of sight while diverting the sales associates attention somewhere else. This is easily done with jewelry and an inattentive sales person. While looking at multiple jewelry you have the sales person distracted while an expensive item is slipped into a pocket. Though it is easy to distract the human eye, the camera is a little harder to fool, so you must keep this in mind when using this tactic.
The Drop Bag This Simple technique is use when a person brings a bag from another store in with them. As they shop around the store they will pick up two of the same items and inconspicuously drop one of the items into the open bag while looking the other item over. They then put the one item back as if they didn’t want it and make another selection.
The Self Bagger With this technique you enter the store with the stores bags already on you. The bags should be as new as they can be and you should have already acquired them in advance. Never walk into a store and pick up a bag out of the recycle bin or an empty cashiers stand. Begin by making your selections and then proceed to a predetermined blind spot in the store. You will then bag up the merchandise and place it the cart. With the merchandise bagged proceed to leave the store. This works really well if there are multiple cashers stands through out the store.
Receipt Matching This technique requires that you already have a receipt for the merchandise that you are going to return. You could search either retailer’s parking lot or trashcans looking for receipts that have a high dollar item on it paid for in cash. The problems with this is that stores try to prevent this type of return by installing outdoor cameras to watch the parking lots. Some will also have a greater who will give you a sticker when you enter with a return. This prevents people from acquiring items from within the store to return. Newer stores now have their return desk entrance separate from the store entrance to prevent you from doing this. If these are not issues then enter the store and compare the items on the receipt to the merchandise in the store. Once the you find a match take the merchandise to the return area and receive money for it.
Magic Bags A person will bring a foil lined bag that they made out of approximately 10 layers of heavy aluminum-foil, into a store. This is to help shield the security tags that are on merchandise from the alarm towers at the exit of a store. Choose small expensive items and place them into your Magic bag. The tags must be completely shielded for this to work. Seal the bag so that it cannot be penetrated by radio frequency. If there is a “leak” (i.e. If the signal from the tower reach the tag through a opening in the bag) the towers will be activated. You can test it by inserting a cell-phone in to the bag and calling the number. If the phone rings that means the layers are too thin, or there is a hole that is allowing the radio waves in. This bag will only work with the RF (radio frequency) tags. In order for it to work with AM (acousto-magnetic) tags you will need to increase the amount of foil to 30 layers of heavy aluminum-foil. A side note - you may use copper or tin plates instead of the foil to make a magic bag. The only issue with this would be weight. Read ‘Anti-Shoplifting Devices’ to better understand the difference between the RF and AM security tags.
Magic Box Like the Magic Bag a shoebox is lined with the appropriate layers of aluminum-foil and inserted into a bag of a local store. The box is placed so the opening is facing up, thus when you are in a concealed area you can discreetly drop items into your box. When you are ready to leave, just close the box with the lid (which was never removed from the bag) and walk out.
Magic Pocket You can line a hidden pocket inside of a jacket with aluminum-foil to create a Magic Bag. You would typically cut the bottom out of an inside pocket and then insert a envelope that has been wrapped in foil. You would then place small items into it and seal the flap so that the radio waves won’t penetrate the envelope.
Bag Switching Bag switching is attempted by two people who come into the store separately The first person will gather a large amount of merchandise that they want to remove from the store and place it into a large bag. They will then inconspicuously switch their bag with the second person, who has a matching bag that is already filled with items that came from another store. If Loss Prevention is watching the first person and miss the bag switch they will more then likely stop them while the second person walks out with the goods.
Box Stuffing This Technique requires the use of a low priced box. You open the box and remove the contents of the box. You then proceed to refill the box with more expensive items. You then reseal the box and take it to a checkout aisle, where you pay the purchase price for the item. You then leave the store with the more expensive items concealed. If the items in the box have security tags on them they will still be active and will set off the alarm towers as you exit. Most of the time the staff will flag you through thinking a mistake was made at the register and the box was not deactivated. You can also leave the low priced item in the box if you have room for your concealed merchandise, make your purchase, then just bring the box with the item back in for a full refund.
Shoe Switching This is a typical switch a roué technique where you leave a store with new shoes while leaving your old pair in the store. Some shoe stores will still have both shoes in the box with no security tags on them. These shoes will be the are the easiest to remove. Just swap out when no one is looking. If one of the shoes has a security tag in it then you will need to either use a tag detacher to remove it or if the tag is in a shoe lace hole you can cut the leather a little and pull the tag through the ripped hole. In a store where the employee has to retrieve shoes for you, find the shoes you wish to liberate. Once the salesperson retrieves the right pair, have them go back to the stock room to get another style so you can compare the two. Once the employee is sent back to the stockroom, you simply walk out with the new pair of shoes leaving the old pair in the box. It is always good to have at least two boxes of shoes left on the floor with the old pair in a bottom covered box and an other new pair exposed on top of it. This should allow you time to move away from the store as the employee seeing that you left the new shoes and boxes, will assume that you changed your mind and left.
High / Low Shopping Cart With this technique two people will fill up a couple of shopping carts. One will have a few expensive items in it while the other cart will be full of miscellaneous items. You then proceed to the cashier and unload the expensive items first. The cashier scans the items and removes the security tags. As one person loads up the first cart with the high value goods the second person continues to unload the second cart. The second shopper distracts the cashier while the first leaves with the expensive items in the cart. When it comes time to pay the second shopper pays with an invalid credit card or gift card. After a few embarrassing moments the second shopper tells the cashier that they will have to go and get the first shopper who has the cash and leaves the rest of the items behind. They both then leave with the expensive items.
Shopping Cart Passing Shopping cart passing is attempted by a two-person group. The first person will gather the desired merchandise into a shopping cart and take it to the register. The cashier will then ring up all the merchandise and place it in bags. Once the total is rung up, the shopper pays with an invalid credit card or gift card. Acting embarrassed for not being able to pay to first shopper leaves the store. Most cashiers will put the shopping cart off to the side and resume ringing up other customers. At this point, the second person moves in and grabs the cart and walks out of the store with the stolen merchandise already in bags.
Shopping Cart Hiding You find the item that you are looking for and place it under the cart. You then continue to gather a small dollar amount of merchandise and places it in the upper part of the shopping cart. You then bring the cart to the register and remove all of the merchandise with the exception of the item you wish to take on the bottom of the cart. A lot of times this will be overlooked by the cahier and not rung up. Also small expensive items can be placed under large boxes or bags that are to big to be picked up at the register. If the cashier is not paying attention you will usually be able to get the merchandise past them without much effort. After paying for the smaller dollar items you leave the store.
Push Out You fill the cart with a lot of high dollar items and you then proceed to the exit. This technique works well when there are register stands throughout the store and there are multiple exits. It would also help to have a receipt in your hand from a prior visit so that it looks like you have paid for the items in the shopping cart.
The Texas Twofer This in also called the Two for One technique and works well in stores that have multiple check out stands and exits. You enter the store and proceed to gather items you wish to take into a shopping cart. Then placing the cart in a predetermined out of the way area, you grab a second cart and gather the exact same items into the cart. You then take and pay for all those items and leave the store with your receipt. You can either have a second partner or do it yourself. Come back into the store with the receipt and go to your first cart. Bag up the items and proceed to another exit with your receipt as if you just purchased it. This technique could be done for a third time if the store has three exits, but I would caution that this should only be done with a partner.
Bag Alarm This works best in Mall stores. You walk into a store with a bag of items from an other store. Inside the bag is a concealed active security tag that will trigger the security alarm towers at the entrance of the store. Make a big deal out of it and make sure an employee notices that it was you that trigger the gates as you entered. Comment that there must be something from another store in their bag that triggered the gates. Ask them if they want to hold onto your bag while you shop and just pick it up on the way out. Find the items you want and conceal them on your body. If you still have your bag you may want to put items underneath the items you brought in. Remember though an alert staff may want to look into your bag as you leave. Before you leave find the employee that saw you come in tell them that as you go out you might set of the alarms again. When you trigger the gates again, just keep on walking.
False Alarm Have a friend enter the store a few minutes before you do and act as if you do not know each. You collect the items that you wish to take while your friend gets a few low dollar items and purchases them. As they leave the store you will walk out right behind them. As they reach the alarm towers have them hesitate a little as you walk through setting off the alarm. You discreetly keep on walking while your friend stops and draws all the attention by looking confused with the bags. They should be very co-operative and happily opens all of their bags for the employee to see yet nothing they have will triggers the gates again. Give an explanation of the False Alarm by saying that it must be cell phone interference.
Decoy Alarm You place an active tag into another shoppers bag while they are not paying attention. This works especially well with someone with children. You follow closely behind them as they walk through the alarm towers. The active tag will set off the alarm and the unsuspecting shopper will stop, as you continue to walk through. Parents will think that maybe their kid had something on them. All the attention will be on them as you leave the store.
Suspicious Friend Have a friend enter the store a few minutes before you do and act as if you do not know each other. The friend will walk around the store acting very suspicious. Picking up items and putting them into a pocket making sure that they are seen, but not being obvious. When an employee sees someone acting suspicious they will begin watch that person. You then proceed to the opposite side of the store and retrieve the merchandise that you wish to take. Make any necessary adjustments to the items in order to remove them and then leave. Your friend should place any objects that where concealed back and then depart. If they are stopped while exiting they can easy prove that they didn’t take anything.
The Bathroom Heist You need two people for this. Have a friend go into the store a few minutes after you. You go in and select whatever you want. The second person will have already entered the store and gone into the restroom. Have them wait in a stall. You go in with the merchandise. Go into the other stall next to your friend. Peek down at your friend’s shoes to make sure they are really next to you. Hand the merchandise under the stall, have them conceal the item and walk out first, leaving the store. You wait a couple of minutes, and then leave. If you are approached while leaving the store say you don’t know what they are talking about because you didn’t take anything. You decided not to buy anything and set the item down. You don’t what happened to it, it is not your reasonability to keep track of stores stuff. Do not admit to anything.!. You did nothing wrong and Loss Prevention will have to let you go.
Grazing This commonly happens at a grocery store. While you are walking around shopping, you pick up some food such as candy, and eat it. If questioned you say that you entered the store with the item. When you are done with the item you discard the empty package on a shelf.
Out The Wrong Door Some stores will have a separate one way entrance and exit doors. The entrance door will normally not have an alarm and can not be opened from the inside of the store. The alarm towers will be on the exit doors. This method will require two people or the help of an unsuspecting customer. You go in and retrieve merchandise from the store and conceal it. When you are ready to leave the store with your items, you wait at the entrance door. Have your friend open the entrance door for you as you walk out. You could do this without a friends help. Just wait by the entrance as a customer comes in and grab the door before it closes and walk out.
Walk Out You go into a store and shop like you normally would collecting as many expensive items as you can carry. As long as your appearance and attitude are not of a suspicious nature you should go unnoticed. Once you have collected your items just walk out and go to your car and leave. This is easily done in small clothing shops that do not have Loss Prevention. The sales associates will be slow to react. It could also be done in large department stores that have multiple entrances as long as you have a friend waiting in a car ready to leave. If the store has only Ink Tags you may not even be noticed as you leave. If an alarm sounds, then continue to walk calmly out the door.
Grab and Run (not really recommended) You enter a store with prior knowledge of what you are looking for. You move toward the merchandise you wish to take. Once you have the merchandise then proceed to the nearest store exit, very quickly. I recommend two people, one as a driver and the other as the runner. Before entering the parking lot for the store, remove the license plate. Coordinate watches and have a set time that the car will pull up the door. Before dashing out, make sure the driver knows to open the rear passenger door. This way you can just run out and dive into the back as the driver peels off because employees are sure to follow you out. Find a safe place to reattach your license plate. Due to the short time that you are inside the store, the people who attempt this are rarely caught, or in some cases even detected. Also a group of people can rush a store and grab as much merchandise as possible and then rush out. The speed with which this happens and the large numbers of people involved make it very difficult to stop.
Emergency Exits This a very old technique and still may work from time to time especially during the holidays. A person gathers a lot of expensive merchandise into a cart and goes to the nearest Emergency Exits . You grab all of your items, push the bar that sets off an alarm and open the door. Have a friend in a car waiting right outside the door for a fast get away. You need to remember that exits will usually have cameras watching them and all of your actions and your face could be recorded. Emergency exits will all have alarms and the newer ones are on a time release. This means when you hit it, it will not open for 10 seconds after the alarm goes off. Loss Prevention are very aware of this tactic and will be watching for suspicious behavior around these doors.
Casher Scanning An easy scam done by a cashier is to have a barcode stuck on the inside of their wrist so when a friend wishes to purchase something, instead of swiping the item the cashier actually swipes their wrist. This is effective when purchasing fifty dollar video games, which will actually ring up a couple packs of gum. This method eludes security cameras since it looks like an actual sale transaction is taking place.
Receipt Passing With this technique you need a partner who waits out side as you enter the store. You select an expensive item and proceed to the checkout and purchase the item. Outside of the store you Pass the receipt and the stores bag off to your partner while you take the item to your car. With the receipt and bag concealed the second person goes into the store and finds the same item. they will then inconspicuously place the item into the bag and pick up a cheaper item on the way to the registers. With the receipt in hand they pay for the cheap item telling the casher they thought that they had better get this item before they leave.
Fake Returns You go to the returns desk with a receipt and a box that contains a used or broken item, or something that has the same weight as the original item. This is best done when the return cashiers are busy and will not open the package. It also helps to have completely resealed the box and saying that it has never been opened. You would just like to have something different. However most high dollar items and almost all electronics will have a serial number on the outside of the box and it will be scanned at time of purchase. If it is returned, it will have to match the serial number on the item inside the box. They will open the box to double check it. You should have purchased the original item with cash so as to leave no evidence pointing to you.
Receipt printing This method is a little more involved then most techniques because it requires you to have a thermal printer and receipt paper from the store you wish to make returns to. This can only be done with stores that do not use Bar-coding identification on the receipts. You purchase a few high value items with cash and gain a receipt that you can then copy. You proceed to make multiple copies of the same receipt so that you can use them to return items that you have taken from the store for a cash refund.
Receipt-less returns This is a way of receiving cash or a store merchandise card without a receipt. You could attempt to remove items from off of the sales floor, walk up to the return desk, say that you lost your receipt and you would like to receive a refund. Unfortunately this is a risky move because Loss Prevention might be watching you as you go the return desk. After concealing the items, you leave the store. You would then proceed to another store and return the item there with out a receipt. Most stores will now require you to have a photo ID to return an item without a receipt and will limit how many returns you can make in a year. Large dollar amounts will always have to be approved by a supervisor. You can have fake Ids made up so that you can return more often to a store.
Fence Sliding In stores that have garden centers one may be capable of sliding small expensive items under the fence. You then leave out the exit and come around to where slide your item under the fence. Or you could slide it to a waiting friend on the other side. Just remember to watch for those outdoor cameras.
Key & Serial Numbers Many people download versions of games or software from the internet but cannot use the full version without a valid license. There are a couple ways of obtaining a license without removing the merchandise from the store. Take the item into a blind spot so that the packaging can be removed. Conceal the item and then take it into the privacy of a bathroom or dressing room to remove the packaging. Copy the serial number and then place the package in an inconspicuous place away from prying eyes.
Defective Software A person buys a piece of software from a computer store, exits, opens the software, and records the serial number / CD key for single license of the software purchased. After at least a few hours the same person re-enters the store where he bought the software and complains to customer service that the installation disc is defective. Most computer store policies allow same-item exchange for opened computer software, so the person is given a different copy of the same software. The person now has two licenses after only paying for one.
Self-Checkout It is possible to pass small items expensive items or large items through the self checkout without scanning them. You can do this if you have a lot of items you are purchasing. You can take a large item and pretend to scan it and place it right into the bag at the same time you pick up on the bag and place into your cart. The bagging area has a weigh scale that checks the weight of the scanned items. If there is a discrepancy, the supervising attendant is signaled to come to the station for assistance. The object is to never let the unscanned item sit in the bagging area. The scales will some times miss small light items so you could place multiple items into a bag without the computer noticing it. Beware - these checkout lanes are watched very closely by LP. Most have a camera overhead watching what you scan and a computer screen off site mirroring what your scanning.
Barcode Counterfeiting While you are shopping you find an expensive item that you wish to have. You also noticed a cheaper version of the same item. You copy the numbers down from the UPC / Barcode off of the cheaper item. You can find bar coding applications and information on the internet that will generate a bar code for you. Print one out on a sticky label and then take it back into the store and place it over the barcode of the expensive item. Go through the checkout process, make a payment, have any security tags deactivated by the cashier and then walk out without arousing suspicion with your new item.
Ticket Switching You find an item on clearance and remove the clearance tag. You then find a similar high dollar item and apply the clearance tag to it. You then bring the high dollar item to an unsuspecting cashier and pay for it at a clearance price. Unfortunately most retailers today now utilize electronic barcodes that when scanned will ring up the correct price.
Gift Card Cloning With this tactic you go into a store and remove a bunch of Gift Cards that have no value. With a card reader you obtain the numbers off of the magnetic strip on the back of the cards and make copies of them. You then return the cards and wait for a customer to activate one. Once activated and money is added to the card the value is also then passed to the cloned card.
Opps - Did I Do That When a person takes their place in the check out line with the items they intend to take, and pay for only one of those items while holding what they want to take in full view to cause confusion but avoid suspicion due to their apparent intention of payment. If the unlikely event of being caught, they could simply pass off the attempt as accidental.
Some of these are obviously more practical than others but thought to add them all anyway. Feel free to add more, happy lifting + stay safe.
submitted by homemadedrugs to Shopliftinguild [link] [comments]


2020.09.17 15:41 Samara_Buckley_Derby Hidden camera mens restroom

Summary: Fighting immortals is a sweetheart job for someone obsessed with the afterlife. Dying on the job, however, is cutting it too close. However, Julian's curiosity with the great beyond pushes him a little too far, back to the land of the living and cursed with a damned soul, just like the immortals he's sworn to fight...
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Julian could already tell that Matti and Luli were amused at his reaction but he couldn’t help being more than a little apprehensive about playing a father role to the sniper. The two agents shared looks in the back seat of the rental car Julian was driving.
“Do you think I need an accent? It’s Russian, right? I can try a— hold up.” Julian cleared his throat and centered himself, trying his best to adopt the accent of one of the Russian agents. “Ok, how’s this?”
“God no. Please no.” Matti exchanged another look with Luli. Julian hadn’t dealt much with the agent since they’d first flown to Fleur, an experience Julian wanted to leave far behind him, but she was a lot more pleasant when she wasn’t holding a gun to his head.
“You’ll blow our cover immediately.” Her voice, meanwhile, had shifted from its previously Chinese accent to a completely American accent. “Keep your American accent. In case you haven’t noticed, both our passports are American. His is Russian. You immigrated to the states young and lived there your whole life. You met your wife, a Russian woman, but after your relationship went poorly, she took the kid and moved back to Russia. She sends him over to you for summers and other various breaks. It was during one such visit that he met me.”
“The three of us are spending holiday in Russia,” Matti said. “After the trip, Luli and I are staying with my mom in Moscow.”
It took Julian a moment to internalize this. “Why wasn’t I told any of this?”
“It’s in your briefing.” Matti pointed to his phone. “You probably didn’t scroll. Don’t worry, most people actually don’t ask about your backstory.”
“Yeah but in case—”
“Look at it this way,” Luli said. “Lapinsky and I are far more likely to be given side eyes or comments. This was intentional, to draw attention from you.”
“Just be a disappointed father.” Matti glanced at his phone for another moment before tapping a few buttons. “Ok, now, names. I need you to recite them, learn them by heart.”
It was kind of weird taking orders from someone who was supposed to be his son. The two were probably only ten years apart in age. Luli was even closer, probably less than five years younger than him.
“Ok. Ok, you’re Alexi. She’s Tara. Alexi and Tara. Alexi Petroff and Tara Wang.”
“Mr. Pertoff? Mr. Pertoff, Alexi says it’s ok if we get Starbucks. We’ll be right back.”
“Mom says it’s ok if I get snakebites and you said I could get anything I wanted for my 17th birthday if it was under 50 dollars. I know this one place that does them for cheap and she’s ok with it.”
The two went back and forth, with Julian’s knuckles getting whiter on the steering wheel each time one added a new line to their newfound family’s canon.
“I’m uh, just not gonna say much, ok kids?”
The two grinned back at him in the rearview mirror, clearly very into their roles.
“Whatever dad.”
~~~
They spent the remaining half hour of their trip going over all the signals that he’d have to remember. It didn’t sound half bad while they were driving, chatting lightly about the operation, but the minute they stepped from the car and entered the airport, the giggles stopped. Alexi and Tara were apparently the brooding type of teens who didn’t say much but stayed weirdly entwined with each other. Julian was ok with that. His palms were already damp and he was going to probably give away his nerves when he had to raise his hands during security.
A million ‘what ifs’ flashed through his head as the three clunked through security. Previously Julian had been primarily in hot water just with AngelThana but with this little stunt he also marked himself as a legitimate felon.
Yet they cruised through without a hitch, not even when examining their various backpacks or cases of randomly assorted goods. Julian’s nerves were hopefully explained by the outlandish appearance of his traveling companions. No crew-cut sporting dad wanted to be seen in public with his offspring looking so… alternative.
As the three made it to their gate, Julian’s mind immediately jumped to the others. After all, there were six groups that had to make it through without any suspicion. Any one of them getting caught could spell disaster for the whole operation, casting unneeded attention on the whole area. Not only would local authorities get involved, but AngelThana’s watchful eye might fall on them. Even worse, Lady Helga would likely abandon her efforts, leaving them no closer to apprehending her and now completely in the dark about her next plans.
It had to go without a hitch.
“I need to pee.” There was a distinct whine to her voice and Julian was struck with how easy it was to remember that the woman pulling a dramatic pout with heavy lipstick was a grown adult who had killed and probably watched her fellow agents die. “Where’s the closest bathroom?”
This was a signal and Julian grunted, getting to his feet. “Should probably all go.” Every word in Julian’s mouth felt unbelievably forced. He scrutinized every sentence. Why would a father want to accompany his son and son’s girlfriend to the bathroom? Was that weird? Creepy? Did it make sense at all?
The casual shrugs and eyerolls from his charges smoothed over his rocky sentence but he still felt the eyes of the airport on him as they strolled down the hallway to the restrooms.
“Take your time,” Luli said before disappearing into the ladies’ room.
The mens’ room was, thankfully, empty.
“No cameras,” Matti said, after doing a thorough search. “I’m splitting off soon, once I get my toys. If you see me, something’s gone wrong.” He grinned and Julian had no doubt that the sniper couldn’t picture a world where something had gone wrong. “Tara will stick with you, so continue to take your lead from her.”
Julian took the momentary privacy to let out a long breath and shake out his hands. “I hate this.”
“I, on the other hand, love it.” Matti was peering at himself in the mirror, eyes glinting over the various changes in his appearance. “You’ll have to get used to it.”
“I’d rather not have to do this again,” he muttered, staring at his face next to Matti’s. It was a lot greyer than the renegade’s.
“We’re not getting more operatives, so anymore injured or lost, and your attendance will be mandatory.”
Julian shook his head. “If I get caught in one of those things, I’ll get trapped in limbo for god knows how long. I’m not risking that.”
“Oh yes, comparatively the rest of us have nothing to risk.” Matti looked at Julian’s reflection, eyes unexpectedly hard. “None of us want to die. We’re not disposable grunts or whatever narrative you’ve constructed in your head. Any one of Kyline’s soldiers would take a bullet to save you from capture but just remember, they’re losing more from that than you. Their sacrifice is because you’re of more strategic value but don’t think for a minute that you’ve got more intrinsic value.” Then the look vanished, replaced by a casual smile. “Humanize your teammates. Keeps people alive.” He glanced at his watch. “Oh good, Tara’s almost here.”
Julian, briefly forgetting who Tara was, stared at Matti blankly in the mirror for another second before the younger man rolled his eyes and headed for the door.
“Right. Tara.” The scolding had hit him from left field but it was a valid point and Julian felt a little sick at how self centered he’d gotten. Military operations weren’t fun in the slightest. “She’s coming in here—”
His question was truncated by the door bursting open. A woman entered, pushing a cleaning cart. She turned, slapping down a ‘cleaning, don’t enter’ sign, before shutting the door behind her.
It took the woman sliding open the cart and unloading a pistol for herself, a pistol and sniper rifle for Matti, and thrusting a pistol into Julian’s hands for him to recognize Luli.
“I didn’t realize you’d be changing,” he said, still staring at the gun.
“Take your weapon. Lapinsky did say I’d be bringing the weapons, yes?” She glared at the sniper for his lack of communications before pulling out a number of guns, including one of the venojets Julian recognized from Sofia’s lab.
“Thought it was obvious.” Matti wasn’t paying them much mind as his fingers danced over his rifle, before snapping off a few components to fit it in his backpack. “MY apologies, Luli.”
Luli seemed to think better of scolding him. “Just take this… dart gun thing and get into position.”
He saluted. “Copy that Specialist.” He looked at Julian, that serious look back in his eyes. “You’re on civilian protection duty. Remember that.”
Then he slung the bag over his shoulder and disappeared from the bathroom.
Luli pulled out a spray bottle. “Alright, give me a second to clean a bit. Make it look convincing. You know how to hide that thing—Blake! Point it at the ground!”
Julian fumbled the gun before pointing it down. Trigger control was a lot easier to forget than he’d thought.
“Uh, just like, in my waistband?”
She sighed. “Let me finish getting the mirrors. Just don’t kill anyone while I’m at it.”
Soon the room was filled with the acrid scent of cleaners and Luli put back the chemicals.
“Here, change out your clothes. Careful not to dislodge your hair.” Her own transformation had been dramatic: makeup gone, hair now in a bun that hid the red streak, she could have been a different person.
Julian felt like his own disguise was not as effective. He still looked like Pieter Petroff but in a janitor’s outfit. It wasn’t until Luli plopped a hat on his head that he felt better.
“Alright, we’re on bathroom duty,” she said. “We’ve got four more to hit before everyone is armed. Ready?”
What followed was probably the most fun he’d had on the whole operation. No one looked twice at the two of them as they coasted down the hall with their big cleaning cart. They slipped into the first bathroom, halfway down the hall, where Shanti and LaForge were shooting the shit.
They both jumped to attention and Julian and Luli burst in, bearing gifts. Both rewarded the pair with face splitting grins as they received their gifts.
“Felt naked without this,” LaForge said, holstering his.
“Ew, not something anyone wants to see.”
“Shut up, Shanti.” This one surprisingly came from Luli, who had a wry grin on her face. “Now get to your positions and radio in the Colonel when you get there.”
They both saluted. “Copy that Specialist.”
The next bathroom was a little harder cause the spring breakers crowd was coed. Nisslon and Bruni were both in the women’s room, which Julian and Luli hit first, only to find it occupied with more than just the soldiers.
An older woman toting a six year old girl was loudly discussing Bruni’s piercing.
“Ma’am—” the private started, but the woman wasn’t having too much of it.
“And you’ve got the nerve to tell me and my child to leave when she has to go potty. You, looking like that.” She gestured at Bruni.
Nisslon, who wasn’t known for her patience, was looking about ready to go when Luli cleared her throat.
“Well you’re all going to have to continue this at a different restroom because this one is closed for cleaning.” The four paused mid argument and turned to Luli. Julian could see both soldiers’ eyes scan over her, puzzlement creasing their brows. Then Bruni’s eyes landed on Julian and she rolled them hard.
“Eurgh. Fine. Let’s just go to the one by the fucking gate,” Nisslon said.
“My child!” shrieked the woman.
“Mommy I don’t have to go potty. Can we go on the plane now?”
Julian watched as the four left, each in a different state of annoyance. Luli watched them leave before sighing.
“Clear the restrooms. How hard is it to clear the restrooms?” She massaged her temples for a moment before pulling out her spray bottle and dousing the room in a lethal amount of cleaner.
“Why are you doing that?” Julian asked, coughing.
“Gotta make it look like we were here.” She emptied what looked like an entire container of bleach into one of the toilets. “Hate cleaning bathrooms. Anything but bathrooms. Haven’t cleaned one since I was seven.”
Julian wanted to offer his assistance but he was afraid to get in her way. Not to mention, he didn’t want to mess up his hair or makeup.
It took Luli another five minutes to make the room look, well, not clean, but maybe cleaned. Once they made it to the men’s restroom, the weapons drop went smoother.
“Took your sweet time,” Howard grumbled as he loaded up his guns.
“You can bring that up with Nilsson and Bruni.” Luli shoved some extra guns into his hands. ”Those are theirs.”
“They got caught up with a mom who wouldn’t leave,” Julian said, trying to provide some context. “So we just kinda kicked them all out. They’re at the bathroom by the gate.”
“Copy that, zombie.”
Julian pulled a face but didn’t say anymore as the four soldiers filed from the room.
The other drops went more smoothly. At one point Luli even trusted Julian to drop the guns off with Grace.
“I need to take a call. Ditch those with the Sergeant and meet me at the bathroom by Gate A8.”
She wasn’t supposed to have left him but he was confident in his ability to pull off the task. He knocked twice on the women’s restroom door.
“In here!” He could recognize the dulcet tones of the Sergeant anywhere so he cleared his throat and shouted back.
“Maintenance! Uh, cleaning, rather.” Off to a brilliant start but there was no time to kick himself. Instead he pushed the cart in, slapped down the sign, and wheeled around to face a tense looking Grace. Her disguised covered her shockingly blond hair with a brown wig and her scars were masterfully hidden.
“Just you?” she asked. “Where’s… Tara?”
“I think cleaning lady is Milly. Tara was my son’s girlfriend.”
She nodded and a corner of her lip lifted in a smile. “You following along fine?”
“Yeah I think so! We had some trouble with two of the spring breakers. Couldn’t get the civies out of the restroom so we had to improvise.”
She bit back a smile for about a half second before laughing. “Damn kid, we really got our top agent out there.” Then she looked over his shoulder. “Where is Milly?”
“She had to take a call.” Her look worried him for a second and he looked over his shoulder, as if also expecting to see Luli. “Is that weird?”
Grace shook her head as she set to work pulling her guns out of the cart. “Just means the Colonel’s got more shit to chat about than she can text. Probably got eyes on Von Martwitz.” A grin spread across her face, either at the idea of facing down the immortal or at the large gun she’d unsheathed from the cart. “Hello again, girl.”
Julian wasn’t really a pacifist but he didn’t like how much the soldiers loved their pet guns. It shouldn’t bother him but when he looked at the guns, he felt uneasy, knowing that every single one of them had killed a human being. It seemed downright ominous to dote on something that had killed so much.
“Right. So does that mean we’re pressed for time?”
Grace looked at him. “Honestly, couldn’t tell you. I’d ask Luli when you get outside.”
“Right. Alright.” He hovered, wanting to say more. The idea that Lady Helga could be arriving any minute made him suddenly realize how real this mission was. If it went ugly, there were a lot of people he might just never see again.
“You got that look on your face.”
He looked back at her, whatever look she’d referred to now replaced with a wry, if tired, smile. “You think this thing is gonna go sideways?”
“Mmm, no. I think it might be unsuccessful because of how much could go wrong, but it’s not going to end with everyone dying. Worst case scenario…” She looked back at her gun. “We just call Omicron and give them the head’s up.”
He nodded, still tense, so she put a hand on his shoulder. “I know I shouldn't worry,” he said but she shook her head.
“You’re not a soldier and you shouldn’t be here. So yeah, second combat situation in a few weeks for someone who should be in a lab or whatever, I get it.” Her eyes were that same earnest blue that burned when they got into a discussion about immortality and religion or when she was kicking his ass in training. “You’re handling it well. Trust the process.” She slung her gun over her back and pulled her long coat over it before striding to the door. “Oh, and Julian?”
“Hmm?” He looked over from his cart at her.
“Give ‘em hell if they do come for you. You know what it’s like.” With this, and final grin, she was out the door.
Will we get our first peek at the elusive Lady Helga next chapter? Or will Julian blow his cover?
Also since we're, idk, maybe halfway through the story, I want to remind you that this story is part of a greater competition, the Publishing Derby! There are other stories that have been submitted as a part of the derby so feel free to check out some of the others.
See you all tomorrow!
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submitted by Samara_Buckley_Derby to HFY [link] [comments]


2020.08.10 16:31 throwawayaracehorse Hidden camera mens restroom

The following contains a transcript from a short radio broadcast that has been picked up by various listeners across the continental United States. Many have been perplexed by its sudden appearance and how it seems to preempt whatever song or radio program they are listening to at the time. It has even been known to appear on streaming programs such as podcasts or Spotify. Listeners have described hearing different episodes and there have been many situations and incidents.
A 23 year old college student named Yuvisela contacted me with her account of hearing the broadcast. She and her boyfriend had encountered the broadcast while driving one sultry summer afternoon from Austin, TX.
So I have this thing with waterfalls. I’m a little obsessed with them. In my free time and when I’m not paying attention in lecture, I like to look on the internet at pictures of them and daydream that I’m there: the roar of the splashing water, the white foamy spray, my bare toes dipped into the icy spring. I’ve got a Pinterest page with hundreds of falls that I would like to visit one day. Niagara, Havasu, Victoria Falls, Gullfoss, Iguazu; they’re all on there. I keep them all catalogued for my bucket list.
Yet, how many people go to the grave with their bucket list hardly finished? I bet a lot.
My boyfriend, Gabriel, likes to mess with me about my obsession. He’ll come up behind me while I’m on my computer or look over my shoulder at my phone and see that I’m looking at waterfalls.
“Don’t go chasing waterfalls, stick to the rivers and the lakes that you’re used to,” he’ll sing when he catches me. It’s this old song he knows, TLC or something. He’s about six years older than me. I’ll joke with him to leave me alone and quit singing that old music, ask him if he used to listen to that on an 8-track or something.
“No, my older sister listened to it on CD. You know CD’s? Those little plastic things with the holes in them? That little slot in your car’s stereo, a CD goes in there. They don’t make ‘em in the new cars anymore.”
We’ve had a variation of this same conversation a bunch of times. It’s kind of a running joke between the two of us—him poking fun at my waterfall obsession and me making fun of how old he is—and while he thinks the waterfall thing is a cute little quirk of mine, he also has been supportive of my passion. That’s why he surprised me with the trip that summer. He knew that I was yearning to see some of these places. He knew that he wanted to make me happy. He knew that my resources were limited. He knew that we weren’t getting any younger; I was 23 and still had a semester to go.
But he also knew that we weren’t getting any richer, either. At least not anytime soon. I know I’m a little bit older for a college student, but it’s taken me a bit longer on account of having to work and stuff. I can’t take a full load every semester. Money’s always tight. I work full time and barely stay ahead, even sending some of my money to help my mom out. Gabriel offered to help me out some and we’d even talked about moving in together, but we had only been together a year at that point and I wasn’t quite ready.
Before my dad had passed, I’d promised him that I was going to get my college degree and I wanted to do it all on my own. While I loved Gabriel and could see myself marrying him, I didn’t want to deal with a transition like that so close to the finish line. Besides, we were getting along so well as it was. Why mess with a good thing?
And it was a good thing that kept better. Just when I thought that I couldn’t love Gabriel more, on my birthday he surprised me with the best present I’ve ever gotten. It was a little black notebook with this kind of leathery cover. While the notebook itself was nice, it was what was inside that was the true present. At some point, he had gone onto my Pinterest page and written down page after page of waterfalls, organizing them by country and state. He had put little squares beside them, boxes to check off. The last two pages were Texas and Oklahoma. He had written a note there. It read:

“Let’s start now...”
-Gabriel
* * *
So far, the trip had been a blast. We had started out in Abilene where we both lived and where I attended college. From there, we went to a place called Gorman Falls at this state park. It was one of the tallest waterfalls in the state and all of the foliage and moss around it was lush and green and for a while, if I crossed my eyes just right it was like I wasn’t even in Texas.
We couldn’t hit all the sites in a day. It was a road trip with multiple nights in hotels. After Gorman Falls and staying at a hotel, we headed towards Austin and stopped off at Hamilton Pool Preserve. The waterfall wasn’t as tall as Gorman, but I have to say I liked it better. The water formed a curtain as it poured off of a rocky shelf and into this sunken grotto of blue green water.
We stayed at this magical place for hours, swimming in the water and soaking up the sun. I could’ve stayed longer, but it was starting to get crowded, so we headed to Austin for a night on the town on 6th Street.
The next day we slept in and got a late start on the road. Lunch was at a Whataburger outside Waco. We sat and ate our food and looked at our phones. I browsed Instagram and my eyes skimmed over a gorgeous site. Yep, another waterfall. I slid my phone over to Gabriel.
“Look!” I said.
“Am I supposed to be looking at the butt or the waterfall?” he asked. An Instagram model was standing with her back to the camera, looking up at the water in awe.
“The waterfall, silly.”
“Seriously, that skinny white girl ain’t got nothing on you. Better let me take a look, just to be sure.”
I stood and twirled around quickly, teasing him. “Ok, so back to the waterfall. Did you look at it?”
“Yeah, it’s beautiful babe. Where was this one?”
“Iceland,” I sighed.
“Oh, right.”
“It’s not looking good for the time being. Maybe in a few years, yeah?”
“Just gotta see how the election goes. I ain’t holding my breath.”
See, neither of us were U.S. citizens. We were what you call DACA recipients. Both of us had wound up in America via illegal means on behalf of our parents, back when we were kids. This was when we were too young to have any say in the matter. I can hardly remember my life before, my life back in Mexico. I grew up here, went to school here. Texas and America is the only home I’ve ever known. Gabriel, he was originally from Guatemala. His situation is more or less the same.
If we were to leave the country, then we might risk not being able to get back in. You could apply for eligibility to travel if you had special circumstances, but they didn’t allow travel for leisure. We didn’t even have passports. Until then, our dreams of traveling—something we both wanted to do—were just that: dreams.
There was a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel. Obama and that DREAM act, I’m sure you’ve heard of it. You know, the dreamers or whatever? That’s what they call us. I guess they call it that because it’s just a freaking fantasy that disappears at the slightest thing—the sunrise, your phone alarm—out of your grasp as soon as you start your day.
Anyways, I applied for the DREAM act, but it hasn’t been a guarantee. We’re all stuck in a sort of limbo, waiting for the people in Washington to figure out what the hell to do with us, using us as a bargaining chip.
Not Gabriel though, he didn’t apply for the act. Part of it was that he was bad about procrastinating. The other part was that he was paranoid about signing up. I told him that he was an idiot and if he blew his chance to become a legal permanent resident, then I wouldn’t follow him to Guatemala if he got deported. He told me that he didn’t trust the program, that once they had you in the system they could track you easier, keep tabs on you. Said he knew a guy that got deported this way. I told him that the guy must’ve gotten into some legal trouble, a DUI or something, to have been deported.
“We’re all just one slip up from some legal trouble. Hell, some people consider us illegal right now,” he had said.
It was hard to argue against that, I guess. At least he knew where he stood, didn’t have that false hope. Sometimes I think it’s the hope that gets you, makes things worse.
Gabriel frowned and handed the phone back to me, looked out the window and took a sip of his Coke. I suddenly felt bad and ungrateful. Here was this amazing man that had planned out an awesome road trip just for me and I was busy looking at other far off adventures, not appreciating what I had right in front of me, the moment I was living in right now.
I leaned forward and kissed him. "I don't care where I'm at as long as you're with me," I said and he smiled.
What I told him just then, it was true. That didn’t mean I was going to grow complacent and quit dreaming.
They did call us dreamers after all.
It was one of those giant truck stops, the kind that was a little smaller than a Wal-Mart or Target, but just barely. We filled up and paced around inside and looked at the aisles and aisles of candy, the funny toys and souvenirs, and the tacky t-shirts.
“Hey Yuvi, whaddaya say? It’s your size.” Gabriel asked, holding up a black t-shirt with glittery letters. “PROUD TRUCKER WIFE” it read.
“Only if you get that one,” I said, pointing at a T-shirt with a semi-truck on it that read “I JUST DROPPED A LOAD”.
“Eww,” Gabriel said, laughing.
We both wandered around on our own. They had a huge candy section and I was looking to see if they had any vero elotes candy. I had just found a bag on a bottom shelf when Gabriel came skipping up.
“We are so getting this,” he said, holding up a plastic CD case.
“What is it?”
“Best of the ‘90s. It’s got your song on there, see? ‘Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls.’ Can we get it? It’s only 3.99.”
“Ha, ok. But only if you buy me this,” I said, handing him the candy.
There was traffic from hell just south of Denton on account of construction and a car wreck or two. We were stop-and-go for what seemed like an hour. I was passenger side and Gabriel idled along.
“Ok. I think now’s the time to break out this bad boy,” Gabriel said as he started tearing at the plastic wrap around the CD case.
“I think this is the first time I’ve even used the CD player in this car.”
“Aw hell yeah,” Gabriel said as the first song started playing. “Gettin’ Jiggy With It.”
“Getting what, now?”
“It’s your boy, Will Smith. Y’know the Fresh Prince? Betcha didn’t know he had a little music career.”
“That guy from I Am Legend and Aladdin?”
Gabriel rolled his eyes. “I guess. His older work is much better.”
“Well I don’t know. You act like you're this old and wise millennial. You’re not that much older than me, y’know.”
“I’m telling ya, my Gen-X sister raised me on all of this stuff. I think she was Gen-X. I don’t know the damn cutoffs. Anyways, she babysat me a lot growing up while Mama was working and stuff. She cultured my little ass. Ooh, here it is!”
A new song started playing. I couldn’t help but laugh at how it started. “It sounds like porn music!”
“Nah, shhhh. Shhh.” Gabriel bobbed his head along to the beat.
The chorus started to worm it’s way into my head. The song was ok, I guess. I still can’t really listen to it to this day.
“You gotta listen to this dope rap coming up,” Gabriel said.
There was the sound of hissing and popping, wet logs burning in a fire. Whispers intermingled with the sound effects. One of the voices rose above the others and said “Listen!” harshly in Spanish, you know, “Escuchen! Escuchen!”, several times.
We both looked at each other with wide eyes. The traffic crept forward slowly and Gabriel kept his hands on the wheel and I kept mine in my lap and that’s when he started to talk. It was this happy sounding older guy, talking right there on my car’s speakers.
Gooood afternoon folks, Buck Hensley here with a special rush hour edition of “The Rules of the Road”. Hope ya’ll are doing alright out there while you’re idling on the clogged arteries of America’s highways and byways, breathing in those delicious exhaust fumes. I know that good ol’ Mother Earth likes to take a big fat rip of that stuff from time to time, although as of late she seems to be getting quite a contact high from that delicious Co2 and starting to feel the effects just a little too much.
And yet you all keep puff-puffing and passing, never slowing down. What with your jet planes and your driving and your travel and your neverending consumption and your cow farts and whatnot. All I’m saying is that you folks might wanna slow down a bit on that stuff, because I’ve seen the end results and all I can say is that they are hilarious. But I understand if you wanna keep on keeping on and having a good time. All I can say is smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.
Speaking of good times, that reminds me of today’s special “Rule of the Road”. You’re gonna want to listen to this one as it’s all about good times. Why that was Carla’s favorite sitcom for a spell there, “Good Times”. She’d watch reruns on into the night, the TV casting a pale glow that was kinda comforting across the bed, and I’d wake up to live studio laughter and her snoring softly beside me, the serene look of slumber on her face and the years I’d wasted.
Gabriel and I both looked at eachother. He shrugged and reached for the stereo. I shooed his hand away. I wanted to listen to it. The voice continued.
But I digress...well now, on to today’s “Rule of the Road”. If at any point during your journey you stop off for a pitstop or a potty break and you enter a public restroom to do your business, take note of the writing on the stalls. You might notice some graffiti that reads, “For a Good Time, Call” and then a phone number listed after it. If you do notice this, then take the number down for later use. Whenever you are in dire need of a good time, then give that number a call.
Now before you go off with a bee in your bonnet and tell me how you ain’t gonna call no sketchy phone number taken off a lady’s or men’s room wall, let me just tell you that this will be worth it. You can trust me. When has old Bucky ever let ya down?
I know what you’re gonna say next though, you’re gonna say, “Buck, I don’t ever call no numbers on my phone. I’m deathly afraid of voices on the other line. If I can’t text and send little emojis and the like, then forget it. If I can’t use an app to order Thai food or a pizza, then I go hungry that night. I haven’t even made an appointment to a doctor since I’ve lived with my parents. What if since we can’t see each other’s faces we start talking at the same time and we talk over each other and then say, ‘oops sorry, no you go ahead’ and then we both say it again at the same time and then we both start trying to talk again and then get stuck in some sort of infinite loop?”
And to that I say, “fair enough.” Don’t use the phone. The consequences of not following this rule are a little less dire than previous rules you may have heard. If you don’t follow this rule then you will simply miss out on a good time. That’s it. But you wouldn’t want to miss out on anything, would ya?
Welp. That’s all I’ve got on this fine late afternoon. May the wind be always at your back, your picnic basket full of snacks, and your cheese ever be pepper jack. Ya’ll stay sane out there. Stay symbiotic. Stay lonely. I'm Buck Hensley and these are "The Rules of the Road".
The voice instantly stopped and the song returned playing. Gabriel had a dumbfounded look on his face.
"What the hell?" he said and tried to rewind the CD.
"Umm, was that part of the song? Maybe a different version?"
"No way," he said and kept rewinding and playing the song over. The little skit that we heard never returned.
“Weird,” I said.
“Beats the heck out of me.”
“Maybe the CD is haunted. That was pretty spooky, y’know? That voice telling us to listen.”
“Maybe it was like a hidden track or something. They used to put those on CD’s back in the day. And this CD was pretty cheap and has all these songs on it. Could’ve been like a pirated deal.”
We weren’t really scared by the broadcast or whatever it was, just more confused. It was only looking back that we saw the importance of what we had heard and how from there our path seemed to be led a certain way.. At the time it was just this weird little thing, a funny little mystery that was forgettable for the time being.
We crept along for a while without incident, the traffic slowly gaining momentum. The music on the CD played on as usual and we heard no extra voices. The songs played like they were supposed to. Everything was fine.
Of course, outside of Gainesville, it hit me. I had been trying to ignore it and power through until we stopped for the night, but I had the sudden urge to pee. All that slow traffic and iced tea and a bottle of water must’ve caught up with me. This was intense. Usually I could hold it pretty good, but I had to get Gabriel to stop at the first exit we saw.
It was this gas station kind of off by itself and it was all dingy and old and faded and didn’t look the cleanest. Gabriel parked and my lower stomach and bladder ached as soon as I stood up and got out of the car. I burst into the place and made a beeline towards the restroom, over in the corner past the ATM and the glass fridges down a hall with burnt out fluorescent lights.
They were singles that you could lock, one for men and one for women. The floor was sticky and paper towels piled out of a trash can and a strip of toilet paper floated in a pool of standing water. A condom dispensing machine was on the wall opposite the toilet.
It wasn’t the worst public restroom I’d ever used and I didn’t have many options; I was literally about to piss myself. I would have to do the hover move over the toilet seat. No seat covers in a joint like this and I didn’t have time to prep it with toilet paper anything.
So I was doing my business, my thighs burning from the squat, and kind of laughing to myself at the condom dispenser machine with its brands like the “FRENCH TICKLER” and that’s when I saw it, the graffiti written in Sharpie, right there on the vending machine. It said, “For A Good Time, Call 9xx-XXX-XXXX [Redacted]”.
After I finished and had washed my hands, I snapped a pic of the graffiti. I figured Gabriel would get a kick out of it.
“You’re supposed to call it. That’s the rule,” Gabriel said when I showed him.
“I’m too nervous. You call. You heard it, too.”
“Chicken.”
“Yep.”
“How many of those things do you even see? I’ve seen them all the time. I bet it’s just dudes pranking each other or fucking with their ex-girlfriends.”
“Well I found it in the ladies room, so hopefully it wasn’t dudes.”
“Okay, you enter it in your phone and I’ll dial. I’ll try to do a caller ID block or something. Let’s just see what happens.”
“Are you sure?”
“Eh come on. Maybe it’s fate.”
The Texas travel center appeared on the southbound side of the interstate and we were soon crossing the Red River on into Oklahoma as I transcribed the numbers from the picture to the keypad on my dialer.
A large casino came into view. It was ginormous with this sort of facade of all these famous buildings on its outside. I could see Big Ben and that Roman coliseum and all these other world architecture things. The casino just stretched on and on.
“Aw, not again,” Gabriel said.
I had just finished transposing the number into the phone. The crazy casino had distracted me. “What is it, babe?”
“Another jam.”
The traffic was veering into the right hand lane, but it was still moving at a decent clip, like 45 mph or something. After a mile of this, I could see a couple of highway patrol cars parked across the interstate, blocking both lanes of traffic. A state trooper stood out in the middle, waving a flashlight thing and directing traffic to take the exit. There was still about an hour of daylight left and you couldn’t even see the light. He was just using it as a baton. Somewhere off in the distance there was a thick wall of smoke filling the evening sky with this surreal haze.
“Wonder what’s going on?” I asked.
“Who knows? Grassfire, maybe.”
We followed the other cars and trucks down the exit ramp. Some turned right, some turned left.
“Right or left? Right or left?” Gabriel asked.
There seemed to be more cars turning left. Maybe they knew something we didn’t. But then, we would be stuck behind them and it was getting dark and we were already behind schedule. I wanted to get the hell out of the car.
“Um, right! Right,” I said, trying to pull up the GPS on my phone. It was lagging and my service had kicked over to 3G. “Freaking Verizon,” I muttered.
We drove down a highway past empty fields fenced off by barbed wire. There were houses and barns and oilfield pump jacks every so often, but not much else. No gas stations or a sign of a town or much else, really. After driving into all this nothingness for a while, my phone completely lost all signal. The cars around us thinned out and there was only a black SUV in front of us.
“Hey babe, I have no service and can’t pull up the GPS. Wanna turn back around?”
“Nah, let’s just keep going. We’ve come this far, yeah? We’ll hit a main road eventually, get some service.”
I sighed in response as he kept driving, let him know I didn’t approve.
“We’ll turn north soon, ok? All roads lead to Turner Falls.”
I checked my phone every fifteen seconds, looking for a signal.
“C’mon Gabe, we’re gonna get lost out here. Let’s just go back, follow the other cars or see if they’ve opened up the interstate again.”
“Look, this looks like a good road. We’ll cut north here and drive aways and then cut back west towards the interstate. It’s literally impossible to get lost out here. Just trying not to lose any more time.”
But it wasn’t so simple and the nervous feeling in my stomach was validated when the road we drove north on turned to gravel. The sun was long gone and our headlights cut a tunnel through the night as barbed wire whizzed by, separating us from pastures that were elevated above the road on grassy rises. I started to fear the worst, thinking of every horror movie I’d ever seen that had started out this way: the headstrong man refusing to admit that he was lost and didn’t know where he was going and the increasingly pissed off and worried girl that was with him.
Babe, please just turn around,” I pleaded.
“Ok, ok. Still no signal, eh?”
I looked down at my phone. Finally, there was one bar of service. “Yes! Hang on.”
“Oh fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck,” Gabriel said, his voice growing louder.
My stomach dropped as what appeared in the rear view mirror was just as scary as any sort of Freddy or Jason or Leatherface from the big screen.
Part 2
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2020.08.02 18:10 tastytots1 Hidden camera mens restroom

Chapter 59 – The Awakening
index- https://www.scribblehub.com/series/104843/eclipse-online-spoon-the-dimension-thief/
advanced chapters patreon- https://www.patreon.com/tastytots
“Alright, relax!” I shouted, backing off at the SWAT team member’s request.
Only after I retreated more than a meter away from my original spot did the two masked special forces operators lower their weapons.
I breathed a sigh of relief once the SMGs were no longer pointed straight at my face. Why was I being treated like a war criminal? What the hell was going on here? I was the victim here, wasn’t I… Didn’t I just suffer a seizure?
I repeated my intentions again, slowly and clearly. “I just need to use the bathroom. Please.”
The SWAT member to the left tapped the radio on his chest and spoke into it.
Subject requires restroom services. Over.
The response came instantaneously. Copy that.
Restroom… services…
Something about that line didn’t sit too well with me. Ah well. In a situation where I was completely unarmed, it was best to listen to whatever instructions the nice men with automatic weapons had for me.
I sat down on the hospital bed again, being extra cautious to not make any sudden movements or show that I was a threat to them in any shape or form. With that in mind, I lied down and began to contemplate my existence.
The fact that a few catchy sound bytes from that popular short video app were playing in my head when I decided to contemplate my existence meant that my life was probably not worth shit, huh. Here I was, lying here in complete police custody for some reason, with all the time in the world in my hands. Someone like Plato or Aristotle could draw meaning from this situation, but not me. All that was in my head at this moment was a catchy song playing to a stupid cat video.
Was that video the meaning of life? After all, the cat did fall over after chasing a bait toy across a sofa. In its pursuit of glory, it failed to see that the ground ceased to exist past the parameters of the sofa, and so it fell straight onto the carpet face first.
Maybe that was the meaning of life… where I was the cat, and life was that attractive piece of bait, fluttering enticingly just above the dead space in front of the sofa…
Creak.
The door to the ICU opened less than ten centimeters, and a brown paper bag was passed from someone on the other side to the masked SWAT member on the right.
Then, the door closed. The SWAT member raised his hand with the paper bag in it. “Do not move.” His voice was garbled by the respirator mask he was wearing… it almost sounded as if he was Darth Vader from Star Wars.
He walked forward and placed the brown paper bag carefully on the floor.
“Retrieve the bag with one hand, and keep your other hand behind your head.”
I wordlessly complied with the strangely specific instructions, and took the paper bag from the floor.
After moving back to a ‘safe distance’ as per the SWAT team member’s continued instructions, I was then free to open the paper bag and see what was inside.
It was just a jar. A big one, to be fair, but still… just a fucking glass jar.

Restroom services, huh…
I unscrewed the lid of the jar.
“Hey, can you guys look away so I can take a piss in peace?” I said in an exasperated tone to the SWAT team members. Neither of them responded, or even showed any indication that I was even alive.
Cursing under my breath, I walked behind a patient curtain.
“Please remain within our line of sight,” the SWAT team member ordered. “Failure to comply with instructions will result in use of deadly force.”
Jesus christ… these guys really needed to loosen up a bit.
“Alright, here. I’ll stand right here where you can see me, but just not enough to see the jar, is that okay?” I asked while positioning myself so the curtain was only visually obstructing my lower area. It wasn’t that it mattered that much, but as a citizen of this country, I expected at least my basic human right to some degree of privacy.
The two SWAT members didn’t respond. I took that as an okay sign.
Psssssssssss.
I let loose a stream of yellow liquid right into the jar, as it swirled and began to fill up the container. Yellow meant that I was a bit dehydrated. Figured, since the only liquid going into my system was from that IV drip.
After I finished my business, I screwed the lid back on the jar and just held the warm glass container in my hand for a moment, taking in the absurdity of this whole situation. Why the hell was I being kept hostage here like a fucking animal? I was a law abiding citizen of the Republic of Korea. At least give me the dignity of being treated like a human being… The more I thought about it, the more I came to the conclusion that there was no legal justification for this kind of treatment. I was starting to feel a bit angry.
Setting the jar on the floor, I walked right to the line that I was asked to stop before. As I approached, the SWAT team members once again held up their SMGs, pointing the muzzles right at my face.
“I want to speak with my lawyer,” I said adamantly. “Give me my phone.”
I already had someone in mind to call.
“Negative,” the SWAT team member replied. “We were given instructions to keep the subject here until further notice.”
“I have rights,” I declared, my tone of voice getting harsher. “As a law abiding citizen of this country, and as a human being, if you do not let me talk to my lawyer right now, I’ll make sure both of you are properly prosecuted after this is all over.”
“How will the media react to this, huh?” I continued. “You think you’ll be able to get away with this without anyone else knowing?”
I noticed the SWAT team member shift in place, just a little bit, betraying a slight bit of discomfort that he felt. He paused for a moment before answering.
“The national government has declared martial law upon the hospital and its parameters until further notice,” the SWAT member said through his respirator.
Martial law?

Martial law????
What in the actual fuck was going on here now?
The SWAT team member pulled out a slip of paper from his chest pocket and read from it in a deliberate and clear fashion.
“Please do not panic. You will be compensated a total of $350,000 from the South Korean government for the inconvenience. We will contact you shortly, when things are made more clear. Signed, Chancellor Lee.”
Alright. Now that… that was a lot of money. Three hundred and fifty THOUSAND dollars. Holy shit, that was more than I made in several years of work. And seeing as how it came from the executive branch of the government, it would be a nontaxable sum.
$350,000 made the message loud and clear. This was shut up money. Given my financial circumstances, I had no choice but to take it. Actually, given the fact that martial law was in place and these two thugs in SWAT uniforms had the legal authority to kill me for any minor transgression, I had no choice but to take this deal.
I nodded, and continued to probe for a bit more information. “How long am I expected to stay here?”
The answer came swiftly. “Indeterminate.”
It was the second day since the Kim Taek-yong or ‘Spoon’ incident, and two other seizure cases occurred. Rumors were abound about the cause of the seemingly isolated incidents, and possible theories were growing more wild by the day. The original rumor was that it had to do with the popular Eclipse Online game. However, the government continued to insist as these incidents popped up that it was simply a result of an unforeseen chemical leak.
Public opinion of the government was beginning to erode, as the rumor mill began to circulate some wild theories. One of these rumor factions, nicknamed the Aliens in Korea faction, postulated that the South Korean government was covering up the existence of aliens on Earth, and that these seizures were the product of failed underground experiments with alien biomaterial. This was in response to a recently published study that found that it was highly likely for there to be around 36 different intelligent alien species in the Milky Way galaxy alone. Which was fair, and probably true, but a more in depth understanding of the research and assumptions used would reveal that even the closest of these species was thousands of light years away.
Other rumors ranged from restaurant beef suppliers with tainted product, poisoning people with lead contaminated beef, to an American military testing of a secret prototype weapon that had a side effect of causing seizures on the general populace.
Euphemia heard about Spoon’s seizure from the news yesterday. Yesterday she was supposed to clean up his apartment, but she was too busy following the news coverage of the event to get a chance to do so.
So she decided to fulfill her side of the promise today. With a brisk walk in slippers, Euphemia left her apartment and headed over to Spoon’s apartment, with a copy of his apartment key in hand that he gave her last week.
Click.
“Let’s see how messy his room is now~”
Euphemia unlocked the door and stepped into Spoon’s apartment with a smile on her face. Spoon would probably be very happy with her if he came back after his hospitalization to a spotless apartment.
“Oh, it’s already so clean~”
The entire apartment was already in pretty good shape. There were some dishes in the sink and a few t-shirts and boxers on the ground here or there, but otherwise it was more or less clean.
As Euphemia headed towards the sofa to collect a dirty boxer that Spoon must have thrown there, she noticed that the compartment under his kitchen sink was wide open.
She remembered that she heard about that on the news. The government sent health inspectors to evaluate the pipework for all seizure victims due to the chemical leak. They must have been working on the sink in Spoon’s apartment yesterday.
They should’ve at least had the decency of closing the sink, at least…
Euphemia walked over to close the sink.
At that moment, she noticed a glint coming from behind the toaster on the kitchen counter. She got closer to see what it was, before stopping in her tracks when she realized what she was looking at.
It was a small hidden camera sticky, the size of her thumb and wedged right behind the toaster. She pretended not to see it, but still looked at it from the corner of her eye. In fact, she started to do the dishes while simultaneously sneaking glances at the camera every time she bent over to get another dirty dish, or put a washed one back in the cabinet.
When she was watching tv and reading all the crazy articles from yesterday, it didn’t even cross her mind that the ridiculous conspiracy theory articles about the incidents and the government’s involvement her friends were sending her had any validity. But here was actual, concrete proof that something suspicious was going on.
“Oh, I need to make the apartment spotlessly clean for my husband~”
Now that she knew she had an audience, Euphemia cleaned the rest of Spoon’s apartment enthusiastically while continuously dropping verbal hints about her intimate relationship with her dear husband Spoon.
Even a friendly ghost spectating this series of events unfold nearby would’ve thought, this girl has a few screws loose in her head.
There was a knock on the door of the hospital room, and the SWAT team members guarding the entrance nodded to each other before opening it.
I rubbed my eyes and looked over, interested in what was disturbing my seventy hour long captivity in this intensive care unit.
A smiling middle aged doctor wearing glasses stepped into the room past the two guards.
“You may go,” he said to the two SWAT team members cheerfully.
“Sir, we have orders that–”
“And I have authority from the Chancellor himself to relieve you two of your post,” the doctor replied without a hint of hesitation. “Do not make me repeat myself. Go.”
The SWAT team member bowed his head respectfully. “Yes, sir.”
Both SWAT guards exited the hospital room through the door, leaving me alone in the room with this strange doctor figure.
“Hello, Mr. Kim Taek-yong,” the bespectacled doctor said to me with a strange grin on his face. “I’d like to ask you some questions, which you should answer as truthfully as you can.”
I stared at him without responding. This man was giving me a seriously bad feeling.
The doctor continued without paying much attention to my reaction. “Have you experienced anything strange recently? Any out of body feeling, or something of that sort?”
The doctor’s teeth glinted in the harsh white lighting of the intensive care unit. “Please answer truthfully,” he said with an unnerving smile.
Advanced chapter tiers for patreon have been buffed again!
8->10
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Thanks for reading :)
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2020.07.09 07:11 Justwonderinif Hidden camera mens restroom

<<< Timeline IX
2009, continued

2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
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2020.07.02 14:24 cesly1987 Hidden camera mens restroom

Jet took his place atop my Xbox like he always did. I thought I had broken him of this in the past. His fluffy fat body would clog the cooling vents, making my Xbox overheat and shut off. But he stood atop the struggling console staring back at me with his unblinking feline gaze. Any other time this would be just slightly annoying. But I had a growing suspicion this cat was not my cat.
A lot of people will say I'm just being paranoid. All cats act this way. They all have a screw loose. But they don't know my Jet.
I found Jet four years ago at the city park. He and his brother had been abandoned. Two little kittens mewing and shivering in the cold. Of course I couldn't have this. With my mother's permission I brought both of them back to the house.
I had just gotten out of an ugly divorce and was living with my mother until I got back on my feet. I knew my mother had a soft spot for all things fluffy so it wasn't a big deal to adopt them. She was newly widowed, so we both welcomed more companionship.
Jet was pure black and his brother Spike was a gray tabby. They were named after anime characters by my nerd self. My mom just went with it, or was unaware of it. Spike, like his namesake, was rambunctious and always getting into trouble. Jet though, was always timid and preferred to let his brother explore the world for him. They both grew to be rather large cats. Jet bigger than his brother. Which made it all the more comical that jet was the wimp of the two.
I lived with my mother for another year an a half. At first Spike was my favorite. His curious nature and friendly personality made it impossible not to like him. Jet was the opposite. For three months after bringing him home he would, without fail, freak out and run from me every time I came back from work. He would hide underneath the couch and stare at me like I was a complete stranger.
I finally broke him of his annoying behavior. I would fish him out and making him cuddle with me everytime he had his freakout and fled from me. Something must have finally flipped in his head and he realized I wasn't going to cook and eat him. But instead of just acting normal around me, he decided to go full clinger and Stan me.
Everywhere I went he had to be with me. Going to the restroom would cause him to meow nonstop while bumping himself against the door. Everywhere I sat required his presence to keep me held down. And his fat self was addicted to cat treats, meowing insistently everytime I walked by the kitchen.
Long story short, when I moved out to live on my own again, he had to come. Mom believed he would have a nervous breakdown from separation anxiety if I left him. He was my fluffy, needy, tiny panther roommate.
My apartment was relatively big for just me and Jet. I went for a two bedroom when all I needed was one. But if I was gonna be living alone again at 30, I wouldn't live all cramped up like I did in my 20's. So the extra room was an office/yoga/ cat jungle gym room.
I splurged on the multilayered cat tree, even though he rarely was on it. He was always on me. But he was strictly an inside cat, and I left him alone a lot when I was at work. So I liked to believe he used it when I was gone.
I had gotten a 9-5 job getting paid pretty well as a receptionist at a high end medical clinic. I was beginning to enjoy my financial stability, my new car, being single, and basking in the light at the end of the divorce tunnel. Jet, netflix, and xbox was the only thing I needed at the time. But then something terrible happened.
I came home from work to find my apartment door wide open. My neighbor from across the hall was standing by her door waiting on me. She was holding her shivering dog in her arms. A shih tzu I believe.
"Oh Glori, I'm so glad you're back!" She exclaimed dramatically as she swooshed around in her robes to face me, her multiple bracelets and necklaces clattering. "Dear girl, somebody broke into our apartments!"
I dropped my purse by the doorstep and looked inside, a little dumbstruck on how to proceed. Good thing my neighbor continued her story after her purposeful dramatic pause.
"I called the cops already, dear. They have already been by. They told me you can contact them if you find anything missing."
I turned to her, Ella I think her name was, and asked, "How long ago was this?"
"About an hour and a half. The cops left about 30 minutes ago. They left me a card with the lead officer's information."
I walked in and began looking around. I waved for Ella to follow. She continued," I was laying down from a headache, waiting for Frank to return from work. Usually I'm at the church for choir practice and Max doesn't get home until after you. But I heard the door begin to rattle like somebody was using keys on it."
Ella was now in my livingroom while I did a quick search down the hallway. I hadn't noticed anything missing. Everything seemed to be the cluttered mess I had left it. I realized Ella had stopped with her story. I rolled my eyes and returned to the livingroom to give her my apt attention.
As if on cue she continued," So I put my ear to the wall and listened." Ella pantomimed putting her ear against the back of her hand. " I knew my Frank wouldn't be coming home this early, and I knew he never carried around so many keys.
"Then Lil Bit started barking!"Her eyes widened dramatically and she began petting her dog like it needed consoling." Lil Bit never barks at his daddy like that!"
Her dog just stared at me and shivered. In my experience with the neighbor dog, he barked at anything and everything. He barked at night, he barked during the day, he barked everytime I walked down the hallway. But maybe his bark was different this time. Maybe that's what Ella was trying to express. Different than its normal insistent yapping.
I could see Ella was performing another dramatic pause, waiting for me to contribute. "He sounded different? Like scared?" I offered.
"Yes!," she jumped "So I grabbed my .45 and racked the slide!" Ella moved her robe aside to show me a large silver handgun sticking out of her pajama pants. This time my eyes widened. Oh lord, Ella was packing!
"I said, 'who's there!' And I heard the door slam and keys start jingling away. Lil Bit was barking furiously! So I scooped up Bit and opened the door." She performed another pause," Nobody there! But your door was wide open!"
I felt so confused. And a little violated. I just turned circles in my living room trying to see if my brain noticed anything out of place. Wait! Where was Jet?
"So I called the cops. They did go in your apartment to see if anybody was hiding in there. And they contacted the landlady Rachel to see if any staff had permission to go into the rooms today."
"Jet! Oh no,Jet!" I darted to my couch and looked under it. Nothing. I frantically called his name again as I ran to my room to check under my bed. He wasn't anywhere. There wasn't a lot of places for him to hide either. I ran back into the hallway in a panic.
"Oh honey, I forgot about your cat!" Ella exclaimed. She began looking around her immediate area like Jet could be hiding right under her feet.
I felt like I was gonna hyperventalate. Who would want to steal my cat? No, that idea didn't make any sense. Nobody was stealing cats. Somebody just broke in and Jet ran away like the big wuss he was. But usually he just hid up under my bed when frightened. Why did he run out?
I felt tears begin to swell in my eyes. It was just too much. The violation of my privacy. The thought of a stranger digging through my few remaining belongings. Now my cat was missing. Either stolen or running scared around the neighborhood. He must be so scared!
Before I realized it, Ella was at my side comforting me. She must have seen my breakdown incoming. She led me to sit on the couch as I began to sniffle.
"I never saw your cat escape. But I wasn't watching the door the whole time. I walked away to get my phone and talk with the cops!"
We sat and talked for awhile. She helped me calm down and come up with a game plan. She let me hold her dog as consolation. That's when I realized I liked my new neighbor.
"It's Lori by the way," I said during a lull in the conversation. Ella looked at me questioningly, then embarrassment covered her face.
"Oh my God, dear, I've been calling you the wrong name all this time!"
I smiled and replied," Its okay. It was never a big deal so I didn't want to embarrass you. Besides, I thought it was kindof cute," I replied.
Ella laughed and said," I had a sister named Glori, and I'm getting old. Just answer to both of them for my sake, please."
I handed Ella back her dog and gave her a quick hug. "I'll answer to anything that sounds close. Now I need to search the neighborhood like we talked about. Jet could still be around."
After I said goodbye to Ella I grabbed a flashlight and headed outside. It was already close to 8pm. I was on the third floor of the complex but the hallways were open to the outside with stairways leading straight to the parking lot with no walls to separate the outside from the inside. Cool air blew through the hallways and my feet echoed of the cement floor.
I made it to the ground floor and called for Jet. Looking under and in between parked cars for a black cat hiding in the dark. I had been at it for about half an hour when I noticed a maintenance van idling towards the back of the building.
I heard the jingle of keyes as two maintenance men came down the stairs carrying something.
"Two more apartments after this. Mistress is making quick progress. More than half already..." the conversation stopped as both men saw me. They were carrying a rolled up carpet between them. But something heavy was clearly weighing it down, slumping in the middle. Both men were gigantic. At least 7 foot and over 250. They both were sweating perfusly. Their tan uniforms darkened by sweat. What shocked me the most as they both looked the same. Twins? It had to be. The only different between them was one man had a fresh scratch going down his left eye, swelling it shut.
"Ma'am," one said as they hurried past me with there heads down. I should have asked them if they had seen Jet, but something told me not to. They loaded the carpet in the van. All the while throwing quick glances at me.
Of course my mind went to the morbid. It looked like they were sneaking out a body wrapped in a carpet. But how cliche could you be? Maybe I've been watching too much criminal minds.
I retired back to my room shortly after. The whole thing had drained me physically and mentally. Sadness crept back in as my head hit the pillow. My poor little guy was all alone out there. I would put up posters tomorrow. A somber sleep overtook me.
The next day at work I printed out flyers with Jet's face plastered all over them. When I got home I ate a lunchable and took a quick shower. I figured I would be out for a couple of hours hanging up flyers and questioning neighbors, and I needed to be refreshed for the task ahead.
I had my stack of flyers and was grabbing my keys from the counter to head out when a heard a soft knock at the door. When I answered it I was met by the landlady Rachel.
Rachel was middle aged, tall, and pale skinned. Her dark hair pulled back in a tight not. She had a toothy smile plastered across her face that didn't show in her eyes. The sight of her was uncomfortable as she stood over me. When I opened the door inwards she didn't step back to give me personal space. She stood just inches away from me on the other side of the door frame. An overwhelming sent of cheap perfume assualted me. She most have dumped half a bottle on herself.
Rachel blinked twice then address me,"Good evening treasured tenant. I heard you were missing a cat?" Her awkward smile still across her face.
"Uh, yah. How did you know?"
Rachel produced a pet carrier from behind her back and presented to me. I actually had to step back to not be hit by it. I bent over to look into the dark inside. I saw two green feline eyes staring back at me. I quickly fumbled with the cage to let him out. I picked up his fat girth to hold him out in front of me.
There are a lot of fat black cats out there, but this one was definitely my Jet. When he was a kitten he got out of the house back at my mom's. He was gone for three days before he returning scared and dirty. He also had a cut on his upper lip that turned into a scar. It made it look like he was giving a humorless smirk. This was one of the reasons he was an inside cat and was traumatized of going outdoors.
"Oh Jet, it is you!" I said as I hugged him. He also smelled funny. Like chemicals. Something strong and pungent. No telling what he got into out there. I would have to wipe him down with a whole box of wet wipes. But as long as I have him back I dont care how he smells.
"How did you know he was missing? I dont think you've ever met him before?" I asked.
Rachel blinked rapidly and froze as the smile fell from her face. She reminded me of an old computer trying to load a heavy program. Her eyes darted around my apartment to finally land on the stack of papers in my hands.
"I saw the flyers," she said. My brow furrowed in confusion.
"Are you sure you just didnt hear it from Ella?" I offered.
"Yes," Rachel replied curtly and nodded. She turned quickly and walked away from me without a further word.
"Okay, bye I guess," I said to myself as I watched her go. I closed my door and returned to cuddling my cat.
He was quiet and uninterested in me for the rest of the night. I figured he was shaken up. He usually was very talkative. I would say something to him and he would meow back nine times out of ten. But he wouldn't even sit on me. He just sat on the other side of the couch and stared. Staring directly into my eyes with his unflinching gaze.
When I went to bed I brought him with me to closed him in my room. I wanted him to know he was safe now. But he just sat on the edge of my bed and, yes, just stared at me. Except he eyes darted all over my body like he was scanning me.
I fell asleep pretty fast that night. Knowing my cat was safe had a lot to do with it. Even if he was a little shaken up. But then I had a nightmare. Sleep paralysis actually. I've suffered from it before, but never this long and this vivid.
I dreamed I was frozen in my bed barely able to breath. It felt like hundred pound weights were tied to each of my limbs. My eyesight was blurry, but I knew I was in my room.
The door to my room would jiggle and I could hear the tickle of keys. Tall dark shadows would step into my room and surround my bed. It was at least five or six of them. I would begin to hear soft chanting and my body would get the sensation akin to when one of your limbs fell asleep.
Then Jet would walk up my legs to stand on my chest. He would bend down to look directly into my eyes. Except they weren't green cat eyes, but blue human eyes. My eyes.
The chanting would grow louder and Jet would put his mouth close to my mouth. I could feel the tickle of his whiskers on my lips. I would begin to panic as I felt my breath leave my lungs. I would try to thrash and get up, but my body would remain frozen. The corners of my vision would begin to fade from lack of oxygen. I managed to get out one word before falling into darkness. It was a plea to anyone or anything.
"Help!" I croaked breathlessly. My vision faded to black. Right before the dream ended I heard a voice come from Jet. My voice!
"Help," It mimicked.
When I awoke in the morning I was still perturbed by my bizarre and suffocating dream. Maybe that's why I began to get paraniod about my cat. As ridiculous as the notion was, I still was very shaken up.
Things only got stranger from there. The dream occured the same every night. Sometimes I could speak, sometimes I couldn't. But the dark figures would return to chant. Jet would sit atop me stealing my breath.
During the day Jet was completely oluf and stoic. No meowing, no cuddling, not even eating treats. Just staring. Searching me with his eyes.
On the fifth day of bad dreams I regretted even coming home to him after work. It felt like my friend was gone. Only an imposter left in his place. An imposter who used a friend's face to violate my dreams.
I had delayed coming home to Jet's deadpan stares by going shopping for a few groceries after work. When I was walking to my door I set down my groceries to fish out my keys. That's when Ella opened her door with Lil Bit on a leash.
We began talking and Ella asked me if I had found my cat. She cheered ecstatically when she heard the news he had returned. She then looked at me questionly when she saw my dour reaction. When she asked me why I seemed sad I froze. I didn't know what to say because I didn't really know what was going on myself. She must have saw my indecisive reaction and offered for me to come over for coffee. I gladly took it. More time out of my apartment.
More and more I was beginning to like Ella. Her coffee was strong and taken dark. A neighbor after my own heart. We began chatting and I soon realized Ella was the information broker for the whole apartment complex.
"Weird stuff has been going on, Glori!" Ella explained over the top of her coffee mug. "First the murders. Then our apartments being broken into!"
I almost choked on my coffee. "What murders?"
"How do you not know?" Ella ask incredulously. " The Washingtons at 111! Maxwhile killed his wife an child!"
"Whoa!" I replied. I didn't know any appropriate reaction to news like this.
"They've been here for 20 years. Max is a engineer. His wife i think was a teacher. Their little boy was-" Ella thought, " sixteen now?"
"Did they say why he did it?"
Ella scrunched her nose, " It was ghastly. In all the papers. He told the police they were imposters. Just came home and freaked out and killed them with his bare hands. They found him in the parking lot covered with blood waiting for the cops. The poor boy and wife must have fought back because Max was taken to the hospital for awhile."
I sat down my coffee. This morbid talk was making me feel worse. I had been over for about an hour anyways. I had to go back home eventually. I told Ella goodnight and she invited me to stop by anytime.
When I opened my apartment door Jet was standing on the counter top, just staring at me.
I took Ella up on her offer to visit for the next couple of days. I have to admit me and Ella were getting kinda tight. I told her all about my divorce and she told me all about how she met her third husband.
Ella had her ear to the ground. Knew all the tea going on. She told me another tenant had come home to find their door open and two ferrets missing. Ferrets! Who the hell steals ferrets? I asked her if the pet mysteriously reappeared or was brought back by the landlady. Ella told me she would have to find out.
We talked about how weird the landlady Rachel was. Ella said Rachel didn't always act weird. She was always quiet and use to live off site. Now Rachel lived in the apartments and her two ogre maintenance men came with her.
I told Ella I hadn't been sleeping well. And in the dead of night I would look out my window onto the parking lot. Those two identical maintenance men were always loading things into a van. Dead body shaped things.
Ella didn't react negatively to my train of thought. She actually looked like she enjoyed the prospect of a murder mystery. So I thought I could tell her what was really bothering me.
"I think something is wrong with my cat." There. It felt great to say. It felt so great that I unloaded everything. Ella just looked more intrigued so I told her everything. How Jet's personality completely flipped, the crazy dreams, the way he watched me.
Ella just nodded unjudgemently and let my crazy flow out. I let all my worries out and found I was out of breath at the end of my tirade.
"Do you listen Coast to Coast?" Ella asked flatly.
"No. What's that?"
"Its a radio broadcast that talks about strange things like what's going on here. It talks about UFO's, bigfoot, purple eyed shadows, black eyed children, and doppelgangers." She put emphasis on the last word.
"Dopplegangers?" I repeated. " Ella, do you believe this stuff?"
Ella cocked her head. "I would like it to be true. You know, even the bad stuff. Even if just 1% of it is true. It would mean there is more to explore, more to discover."
I almost laughed. " So you want to believe?" I asked. Ella just nodded sincerely. Not getting my X-files reference.
"I've experienced some unexplainable things in my life. And Frank has a terrifying story about black eyed children. I'll have him tell it to you when he gets home."
"Oh no!" I said, waving my arms. "I don't need to hear that before I go to sleep." We both had a laugh and I grabbed my purse and stood up. My noneverble cue I was needing to go. Ella stood up with me and grabbed my hand with both of hers before I turned to leave .
"Frank is changing the locks in the apartment tomorrow. Rachel will notice if I change the lock on the front door. But screw her. I want to feel safe in my own room. And he is also installing a camera for inside." She pointed along the roof of the hallway. " If someone breaks in we'll catch them on video. I can get Frank the do the same for you."
I told Ella to price the camera and lock for me and I would think about it. I didn't know if I was fully ready to put on the tin foil hat just yet. But at least I had options.
So I slid into my apartment and fell on my couch. I kicked off my shoes and closed my eyes. But I could feel another set of eyes upon me. I opened mine to see Jet sitting atop my xbox.
So now you know my story. My paranoia. My sleep deprivation. I wondered if I fell asleep on the couch if the nightmare would play out here.
I sit up straight. I fish around in my purse to pull out a new collar with a bell on it for Jet. I was tired of him sneaking up on me. Maybe hearing him coming would let me feel a little more in control.
I slip the red collar over his head. He hates it. He shakes his head furiously and paws at it, jingling all the way.
"Oh so you do show emotion,"I say dryly before I turned to head to my room. Like a responsible and very tired adult, I'm in bed by nine.
I fall asleep slowly. I was in the twilight between conciousness and unconsciousness when I hear it. The bell on the collar. It jingles loud and I hear an impact. The sound of the collar hitting a wall.
Oh well, I think. Dummy must have run into a wall. But it sounded like it was thrown, like it wasn't attached to a fat cat body. Maybe I should go look. But I feel so good in my bed. Sleep is about to take me. I'm just barely awake but not recording anything. Then I hear it, a chilling sound that makes my hair stand on end.
A sickly female moan, and its close. My eyes open and my heart start pounding. I lay frozen in bed unwilling to move. Maybe I dreamt it. A dream you swear you hear out loud.
I hear the subtle sound of my faux leather couch cushions rubbing against something. Was somebody on my couch? I had to check. Or run to Ella's.
I get up and slowly walk down the hallway. I see Jet's red collar snapped in half and laying at the end of the hallway. I smell a pungant chemical smell wafting by me. I slowly make the corner to peer into the livingroom. What I see freezes a scream in my throat.
Sitting on my couch is a naked slim white female with dark hair matted over her hanging head. The woman is slimy with patches of dark fur matted in blotches all over her body. The woman looks up to stare at me with green eyes, and with my face. She stares at me unblinking. When she finally blinks her green eyes turn to my blue eyes.
I can't believe it! This is crazy. Its a dream! Oh, God please let it be a dream! Where is Jet and why does this girl look exactly like me? I refuse to think Ella was right!
My double stands and looks at me. She absently brushes off the clumps of black cat fur. She stares at me then looks down at herself. Stares at me, then down at herself. Comparing my body to hers.
"What are you!?" I demand. She looks at me and copies my facial expression. An expression of terror.
"Wha-are yuh?" She repeats back to me in a low pitch."What...are...you?" She says in a slightly higher voice. She smiles and perfectly parrots back to me, "What are you!?"
Nope! That is enough! I turn and run to my door. I reach for the door knob when it begins to turn on its own. I hear keys jingling. It opens and two enormous maintenance men shove me back into my apartment. They stand as guardians blocking my exit. Without a word they part and Rachel strolls between them and into my livingroom.
What is going on? Why are they here?
"Help me!" I beg.
"Help me!" Copies my doppleganger. From behind me. Rachel smiles and turns to nod approval at my copy.
I begin backing away from all of them towards the far corner of my living room.
"I'm glad you matured so quickly, Lori," Rachel chimes.
"Thank you, Mistress," My copy replies. The copy points at the ground and says excitedly, " We can use the carpet she already has here!
" Yes, good," Rachel replies. She turns to the twin giants and says coldly, "Put her down."
One of the men begins to slip tight leather gloves on and the other pulls a thin wire out of a back pocket . They both begin to stalk towards me. Their massive frames blocking any chance of running around them.
I back up against my window. I turn and look out. Maybe I can jump. I start pulling on the bottom of the window. Its sealed shut!
Then I see it. I almost half expected it. And all hope flees from me. The van is outside idling. My hearse is waiting for me.
I feel powerful hands wrap around my neck from behind. The blood flowing to my brain is stopped. At least it will be quick. Before the life leaves me I hear Rachel.
"I need you to work fast, Lori. Only the neighbor woman is left ."
-ELLA'S END-
Lori didn't come by for our regular coffee and chat for the past two days. I was already worried for the young lady with all the things she told me the last time we talked. Now I was desperately wanting to check on her.
I knew when she came home from work so I positioned myself by my door to listen for her. When I heard her keys jingling I opened my door with Lil Bit on his leash.
"Oh Glori, How have you been?" No response. Lori still had her back turned fiddling with her keys.
"Gloooori?" I sang to her. Nothing. Okay you rude girl.
"Lori!" I shouted
Lori turned to face me with a blank look. Then a fake smile spread across her face. "Oh. Hello neighbor." She just turned back and slipped into her apartment. Closing the door sharply.
What. The. Frick. Did I do something to make her mad? Has she gone mad? Maybe it was me going mad.
I put Lil Bit down. I had been having mad thoughts lately about Bit. He had been acting different ever since I came home from choir practice yesterday. He wasn't his normal shakey self. He was quiet and still. Not even wagging his tale. Just like Lori's damn cat.
I just stared at him and he at me. Everything rushing through my head. The whole complex was changing. All the way from the landlady to the critters. I considered what I told Lori.
Doppelgangers!
"Well. I got something for you if that's the case," I told Lil Bit. And I didn't mean a treat. He just sat and stared.
Days passed with no contact from Lori. Lil Bit still was acting strange. Recording my every move with his eyes. I didn't have any dreams though. But two Ambiens at night may be the cause of that.
It all came to a head a week later. I was taking my afternoon nap when I heard it. The jingling of keys at my bedroom door. I removed my sleep mask and looked at the door.
"Who's there!" I shouted. I knew Frank was at work and he had the correct key to open the door anyways.
There was a long quiet pause. Then Lori's voice spoke up, " It's me, Ella. I need to talk. Open the door please."
I desperately started searching for my phone. I bought more time by asking, " Why didn't you ring the door bell?"
"Oh, I did!" Lori gave a fake laugh. "You didn't hear? Lets visit like we use to."
I found my phone and pulled up the app that showed the feed of my hidden camera. Thank God my Frank was paranoid and tech savvy. I pulled up the feed showing down the hallway from my room. I gasped in terror.
Lori stood by my door with a giant ring of keys in her hand. Behind her loomed the two monstrous maintenance men in there tan uniforms. They were hunched forward like football players waiting for the snap. Further behind them I could see Rachel in the livingroom. I squinted to make out a fifth figure in my apartment.
"Oh lord, oh no!" I exclaimed. It was me. Naked as the day God made me. Peeking over to look down the hallway. I was right. They were changelings, doppelgangers, mimics!
Lori quietly knocked and said something else. I didn't hear her. Grief had overtaken me. This means my friend was gone.
I opened my drawer and retrieved Ole Roland, my .45. I slide the slide back quietly to rack a round. I spoke over it to cover the tell-tell sound of metal on metal.
"I can see you, bitch! You're not Lori! I can see all of you waiting to pounce me! The real Lori knew about the camera!"
Fake Lori looked up into the camera and sighed and continued in a cold voice," We will get in, Ella. The longer it takes the more painful it will be for you. You and Frank are the last ones. No one here will help you."
Oh God! Frank was still normal. I had to get help for him. I may be lost but maybe I could save him. If I did enough damage. Caused enough commotion.
There was a heavy blow to my door. Twiddle Dee and Twiddle Dumb were pounding on it. They would be through in less than a minute.
I cancelled the app and dialed 911. I whispered my apartment address three times to the dispatcher and hid the phone under the bed. The top of the door caved in and a muscled arm reached through to grab the door knob on the other end.
They will have to clear the bed to get to me. I got them stacked up. Mag holds seven and there's five of them. They don't know I have a weapon though. They are cocky and overconfident. Why would a little old lady be packing heat? Maybe two bullets each for the big guys. Yeah, the math works out. Or maybe one for each and three for Rachel.
The door busted open and the goons rushed me. I leveled the gun at the first ones head.
Maybe I kill them all. Maybe the gun jams and they get me. They're all on video and the cops will come when they hear the screams regardless. But God I pray I get to punish at least one of them! They took my friend, her cat, and might take my Frank! But this is not the worst of their sins, I scream as I squeeze the trigger.
"They took my dog!"
submitted by cesly1987 to Ceslystories [link] [comments]


2020.05.21 01:22 cesly1987 Hidden camera mens restroom

Jet took his place atop my Xbox like he always did. I thought I had broken him of this in the past. His fluffy fat body would clog the cooling vents, making my Xbox overheat and shut off. But he stood atop the struggling console staring back at me with his unblinking feline gaze. Any other time this would be just slightly annoying. But I had a growing suspicion this cat was not my cat.
A lot of people will say I'm just being paranoid. All cats act this way. They all have a screw loose. But they don't know my Jet.
I found Jet four years ago at the city park. He and his brother had been abandoned. Two little kittens mewing and shivering in the cold. Of course I couldn't have this. With my mother's permission I brought both of them back to the house.
I had just gotten out of an ugly divorce and was living with my mother until I got back on my feet. I knew my mother had a soft spot for all things fluffy so it wasn't a big deal to adopt them. She was newly widowed, so we both welcomed more companionship.
Jet was pure black and his brother Spike was a gray tabby. They were named after anime characters by my nerd self. My mom just went with it, or was unaware of it. Spike, like his namesake, was rambunctious and always getting into trouble. Jet though, was always timid and preferred to let his brother explore the world for him. They both grew to be rather large cats. Jet bigger than his brother. Which made it all the more comical that jet was the wimp of the two.
I lived with my mother for another year an a half. At first Spike was my favorite. His curious nature and friendly personality made it impossible not to like him. Jet was the opposite. For three months after bringing him home he would, without fail, freak out and run from me every time I came back from work. He would hide underneath the couch and stare at me like I was a complete stranger.
I finally broke him of his annoying behavior. I would fish him out and making him cuddle with me everytime he had his freakout and fled from me. Something must have finally flipped in his head and he realized I wasn't going to cook and eat him. But instead of just acting normal around me, he decided to go full clinger and Stan me.
Everywhere I went he had to be with me. Going to the restroom would cause him to meow nonstop while bumping himself against the door. Everywhere I sat required his presence to keep me held down. And his fat self was addicted to cat treats, meowing insistently everytime I walked by the kitchen.
Long story short, when I moved out to live on my own again, he had to come. Mom believed he would have a nervous breakdown from separation anxiety if I left him. He was my fluffy, needy, tiny panther roommate.
My apartment was relatively big for just me and Jet. I went for a two bedroom when all I needed was one. But if I was gonna be living alone again at 30, I wouldn't live all cramped up like I did in my 20's. So the extra room was an office/yoga/ cat jungle gym room.
I splurged on the multilayered cat tree, even though he rarely was on it. He was always on me. But he was strictly an inside cat, and I left him alone a lot when I was at work. So I liked to believe he used it when I was gone.
I had gotten a 9-5 job getting paid pretty well as a receptionist at a high end medical clinic. I was beginning to enjoy my financial stability, my new car, being single, and basking in the light at the end of the divorce tunnel. Jet, netflix, and xbox was the only thing I needed at the time. But then something terrible happened.
I came home from work to find my apartment door wide open. My neighbor from across the hall was standing by her door waiting on me. She was holding her shivering dog in her arms. A shih tzu I believe.
"Oh Glori, I'm so glad you're back!" She exclaimed dramatically as she swooshed around in her robes to face me, her multiple bracelets and necklaces clattering. "Dear girl, somebody broke into our apartments!"
I dropped my purse by the doorstep and looked inside, a little dumbstruck on how to proceed. Good thing my neighbor continued her story after her purposeful dramatic pause.
"I called the cops already, dear. They have already been by. They told me you can contact them if you find anything missing."
I turned to her, Ella I think her name was, and asked, "How long ago was this?"
"About an hour and a half. The cops left about 30 minutes ago. They left me a card with the lead officer's information."
I walked in and began looking around. I waved for Ella to follow. She continued," I was laying down from a headache, waiting for Frank to return from work. Usually I'm at the church for choir practice and Max doesn't get home until after you. But I heard the door begin to rattle like somebody was using keys on it."
Ella was now in my livingroom while I did a quick search down the hallway. I hadn't noticed anything missing. Everything seemed to be the cluttered mess I had left it. I realized Ella had stopped with her story. I rolled my eyes and returned to the livingroom to give her my apt attention.
As if on cue she continued," So I put my ear to the wall and listened." Ella pantomimed putting her ear against the back of her hand. " I knew my Frank wouldn't be coming home this early, and I knew he never carried around so many keys.
"Then Lil Bit started barking!"Her eyes widened dramatically and she began petting her dog like it needed consoling." Lil Bit never barks at his daddy like that!"
Her dog just stared at me and shivered. In my experience with the neighbor dog, he barked at anything and everything. He barked at night, he barked during the day, he barked everytime I walked down the hallway. But maybe his bark was different this time. Maybe that's what Ella was trying to express. Different than its normal insistent yapping.
I could see Ella was performing another dramatic pause, waiting for me to contribute. "He sounded different? Like scared?" I offered.
"Yes!," she jumped "So I grabbed my .45 and racked the slide!" Ella moved her robe aside to show me a large silver handgun sticking out of her pajama pants. This time my eyes widened. Oh lord, Ella was packing!
"I said, 'who's there!' And I heard the door slam and keys start jingling away. Lil Bit was barking furiously! So I scooped up Bit and opened the door." She performed another pause," Nobody there! But your door was wide open!"
I felt so confused. And a little violated. I just turned circles in my living room trying to see if my brain noticed anything out of place. Wait! Where was Jet?
"So I called the cops. They did go in your apartment to see if anybody was hiding in there. And they contacted the landlady Rachel to see if any staff had permission to go into the rooms today."
"Jet! Oh no,Jet!" I darted to my couch and looked under it. Nothing. I frantically called his name again as I ran to my room to check under my bed. He wasn't anywhere. There wasn't a lot of places for him to hide either. I ran back into the hallway in a panic.
"Oh honey, I forgot about your cat!" Ella exclaimed. She began looking around her immediate area like Jet could be hiding right under her feet.
I felt like I was gonna hyperventalate. Who would want to steal my cat? No, that idea didn't make any sense. Nobody was stealing cats. Somebody just broke in and Jet ran away like the big wuss he was. But usually he just hid up under my bed when frightened. Why did he run out?
I felt tears begin to swell in my eyes. It was just too much. The violation of my privacy. The thought of a stranger digging through my few remaining belongings. Now my cat was missing. Either stolen or running scared around the neighborhood. He must be so scared!
Before I realized it, Ella was at my side comforting me. She must have seen my breakdown incoming. She led me to sit on the couch as I began to sniffle.
"I never saw your cat escape. But I wasn't watching the door the whole time. I walked away to get my phone and talk with the cops!"
We sat and talked for awhile. She helped me calm down and come up with a game plan. She let me hold her dog as consolation. That's when I realized I liked my new neighbor.
"It's Lori by the way," I said during a lull in the conversation. Ella looked at me questioningly, then embarrassment covered her face.
"Oh my God, dear, I've been calling you the wrong name all this time!"
I smiled and replied," Its okay. It was never a big deal so I didn't want to embarrass you. Besides, I thought it was kindof cute," I replied.
Ella laughed and said," I had a sister named Glori, and I'm getting old. Just answer to both of them for my sake, please."
I handed Ella back her dog and gave her a quick hug. "I'll answer to anything that sounds close. Now I need to search the neighborhood like we talked about. Jet could still be around."
After I said goodbye to Ella I grabbed a flashlight and headed outside. It was already close to 8pm. I was on the third floor of the complex but the hallways were open to the outside with stairways leading straight to the parking lot with no walls to separate the outside from the inside. Cool air blew through the hallways and my feet echoed of the cement floor.
I made it to the ground floor and called for Jet. Looking under and in between parked cars for a black cat hiding in the dark. I had been at it for about half an hour when I noticed a maintenance van idling towards the back of the building.
I heard the jingle of keyes as two maintenance men came down the stairs carrying something.
"Two more apartments after this. Mistress is making quick progress. More than half already..." the conversation stopped as both men saw me. They were carrying a rolled up carpet between them. But something heavy was clearly weighing it down, slumping in the middle. Both men were gigantic. At least 7 foot and over 250. They both were sweating perfusly. Their tan uniforms darkened by sweat. What shocked me the most as they both looked the same. Twins? It had to be. The only different between them was one man had a fresh scratch going down his left eye, swelling it shut.
"Ma'am," one said as they hurried past me with there heads down. I should have asked them if they had seen Jet, but something told me not to. They loaded the carpet in the van. All the while throwing quick glances at me.
Of course my mind went to the morbid. It looked like they were sneaking out a body wrapped in a carpet. But how cliche could you be? Maybe I've been watching too much criminal minds.
I retired back to my room shortly after. The whole thing had drained me physically and mentally. Sadness crept back in as my head hit the pillow. My poor little guy was all alone out there. I would put up posters tomorrow. A somber sleep overtook me.
The next day at work I printed out flyers with Jet's face plastered all over them. When I got home I ate a lunchable and took a quick shower. I figured I would be out for a couple of hours hanging up flyers and questioning neighbors, and I needed to be refreshed for the task ahead.
I had my stack of flyers and was grabbing my keys from the counter to head out when a heard a soft knock at the door. When I answered it I was met by the landlady Rachel.
Rachel was middle aged, tall, and pale skinned. Her dark hair pulled back in a tight not. She had a toothy smile plastered across her face that didn't show in her eyes. The sight of her was uncomfortable as she stood over me. When I opened the door inwards she didn't step back to give me personal space. She stood just inches away from me on the other side of the door frame. An overwhelming sent of cheap perfume assualted me. She most have dumped half a bottle on herself.
Rachel blinked twice then address me,"Good evening treasured tenant. I heard you were missing a cat?" Her awkward smile still across her face.
"Uh, yah. How did you know?"
Rachel produced a pet carrier from behind her back and presented to me. I actually had to step back to not be hit by it. I bent over to look into the dark inside. I saw two green feline eyes staring back at me. I quickly fumbled with the cage to let him out. I picked up his fat girth to hold him out in front of me.
There are a lot of fat black cats out there, but this one was definitely my Jet. When he was a kitten he got out of the house back at my mom's. He was gone for three days before he returning scared and dirty. He also had a cut on his upper lip that turned into a scar. It made it look like he was giving a humorless smirk. This was one of the reasons he was an inside cat and was traumatized of going outdoors.
"Oh Jet, it is you!" I said as I hugged him. He also smelled funny. Like chemicals. Something strong and pungent. No telling what he got into out there. I would have to wipe him down with a whole box of wet wipes. But as long as I have him back I dont care how he smells.
"How did you know he was missing? I dont think you've ever met him before?" I asked.
Rachel blinked rapidly and froze as the smile fell from her face. She reminded me of an old computer trying to load a heavy program. Her eyes darted around my apartment to finally land on the stack of papers in my hands.
"I saw the flyers," she said. My brow furrowed in confusion.
"Are you sure you just didnt hear it from Ella?" I offered.
"Yes," Rachel replied curtly and nodded. She turned quickly and walked away from me without a further word.
"Okay, bye I guess," I said to myself as I watched her go. I closed my door and returned to cuddling my cat.
He was quiet and uninterested in me for the rest of the night. I figured he was shaken up. He usually was very talkative. I would say something to him and he would meow back nine times out of ten. But he wouldn't even sit on me. He just sat on the other side of the couch and stared. Staring directly into my eyes with his unflinching gaze.
When I went to bed I brought him with me to closed him in my room. I wanted him to know he was safe now. But he just sat on the edge of my bed and, yes, just stared at me. Except he eyes darted all over my body like he was scanning me.
I fell asleep pretty fast that night. Knowing my cat was safe had a lot to do with it. Even if he was a little shaken up. But then I had a nightmare. Sleep paralysis actually. I've suffered from it before, but never this long and this vivid.
I dreamed I was frozen in my bed barely able to breath. It felt like hundred pound weights were tied to each of my limbs. My eyesight was blurry, but I knew I was in my room.
The door to my room would jiggle and I could hear the tickle of keys. Tall dark shadows would step into my room and surround my bed. It was at least five or six of them. I would begin to hear soft chanting and my body would get the sensation akin to when one of your limbs fell asleep.
Then Jet would walk up my legs to stand on my chest. He would bend down to look directly into my eyes. Except they weren't green cat eyes, but blue human eyes. My eyes.
The chanting would grow louder and Jet would put his mouth close to my mouth. I could feel the tickle of his whiskers on my lips. I would begin to panic as I felt my breath leave my lungs. I would try to thrash and get up, but my body would remain frozen. The corners of my vision would begin to fade from lack of oxygen. I managed to get out one word before falling into darkness. It was a plea to anyone or anything.
"Help!" I croaked breathlessly. My vision faded to black. Right before the dream ended I heard a voice come from Jet. My voice!
"Help," It mimicked.
When I awoke in the morning I was still perturbed by my bizarre and suffocating dream. Maybe that's why I began to get paraniod about my cat. As ridiculous as the notion was, I still was very shaken up.
Things only got stranger from there. The dream occured the same every night. Sometimes I could speak, sometimes I couldn't. But the dark figures would return to chant. Jet would sit atop me stealing my breath.
During the day Jet was completely oluf and stoic. No meowing, no cuddling, not even eating treats. Just staring. Searching me with his eyes.
On the fifth day of bad dreams I regretted even coming home to him after work. It felt like my friend was gone. Only an imposter left in his place. An imposter who used a friend's face to violate my dreams.
I had delayed coming home to Jet's deadpan stares by going shopping for a few groceries after work. When I was walking to my door I set down my groceries to fish out my keys. That's when Ella opened her door with Lil Bit on a leash.
We began talking and Ella asked me if I had found my cat. She cheered ecstatically when she heard the news he had returned. She then looked at me questionly when she saw my dour reaction. When she asked me why I seemed sad I froze. I didn't know what to say because I didn't really know what was going on myself. She must have saw my indecisive reaction and offered for me to come over for coffee. I gladly took it. More time out of my apartment.
More and more I was beginning to like Ella. Her coffee was strong and taken dark. A neighbor after my own heart. We began chatting and I soon realized Ella was the information broker for the whole apartment complex.
"Weird stuff has been going on, Glori!" Ella explained over the top of her coffee mug. "First the murders. Then our apartments being broken into!"
I almost choked on my coffee. "What murders?"
"How do you not know?" Ella ask incredulously. " The Washingtons at 111! Maxwhile killed his wife an child!"
"Whoa!" I replied. I didn't know any appropriate reaction to news like this.
"They've been here for 20 years. Max is a engineer. His wife i think was a teacher. Their little boy was-" Ella thought, " sixteen now?"
"Did they say why he did it?"
Ella scrunched her nose, " It was ghastly. In all the papers. He told the police they were imposters. Just came home and freaked out and killed them with his bare hands. They found him in the parking lot covered with blood waiting for the cops. The poor boy and wife must have fought back because Max was taken to the hospital for awhile."
I sat down my coffee. This morbid talk was making me feel worse. I had been over for about an hour anyways. I had to go back home eventually. I told Ella goodnight and she invited me to stop by anytime.
When I opened my apartment door Jet was standing on the counter top, just staring at me.
I took Ella up on her offer to visit for the next couple of days. I have to admit me and Ella were getting kinda tight. I told her all about my divorce and she told me all about how she met her third husband.
Ella had her ear to the ground. Knew all the tea going on. She told me another tenant had come home to find their door open and two ferrets missing. Ferrets! Who the hell steals ferrets? I asked her if the pet mysteriously reappeared or was brought back by the landlady. Ella told me she would have to find out.
We talked about how weird the landlady Rachel was. Ella said Rachel didn't always act weird. She was always quiet and use to live off site. Now Rachel lived in the apartments and her two ogre maintenance men came with her.
I told Ella I hadn't been sleeping well. And in the dead of night I would look out my window onto the parking lot. Those two identical maintenance men were always loading things into a van. Dead body shaped things.
Ella didn't react negatively to my train of thought. She actually looked like she enjoyed the prospect of a murder mystery. So I thought I could tell her what was really bothering me.
"I think something is wrong with my cat." There. It felt great to say. It felt so great that I unloaded everything. Ella just looked more intrigued so I told her everything. How Jet's personality completely flipped, the crazy dreams, the way he watched me.
Ella just nodded unjudgemently and let my crazy flow out. I let all my worries out and found I was out of breath at the end of my tirade.
"Do you listen Coast to Coast?" Ella asked flatly.
"No. What's that?"
"Its a radio broadcast that talks about strange things like what's going on here. It talks about UFO's, bigfoot, purple eyed shadows, black eyed children, and doppelgangers." She put emphasis on the last word.
"Dopplegangers?" I repeated. " Ella, do you believe this stuff?"
Ella cocked her head. "I would like it to be true. You know, even the bad stuff. Even if just 1% of it is true. It would mean there is more to explore, more to discover."
I almost laughed. " So you want to believe?" I asked. Ella just nodded sincerely. Not getting my X-files reference.
"I've experienced some unexplainable things in my life. And Frank has a terrifying story about black eyed children. I'll have him tell it to you when he gets home."
"Oh no!" I said, waving my arms. "I don't need to hear that before I go to sleep." We both had a laugh and I grabbed my purse and stood up. My noneverble cue I was needing to go. Ella stood up with me and grabbed my hand with both of hers before I turned to leave .
"Frank is changing the locks in the apartment tomorrow. Rachel will notice if I change the lock on the front door. But screw her. I want to feel safe in my own room. And he is also installing a camera for inside." She pointed along the roof of the hallway. " If someone breaks in we'll catch them on video. I can get Frank the do the same for you."
I told Ella to price the camera and lock for me and I would think about it. I didn't know if I was fully ready to put on the tin foil hat just yet. But at least I had options.
So I slid into my apartment and fell on my couch. I kicked off my shoes and closed my eyes. But I could feel another set of eyes upon me. I opened mine to see Jet sitting atop my xbox.
So now you know my story. My paranoia. My sleep deprivation. I wondered if I fell asleep on the couch if the nightmare would play out here.
I sit up straight. I fish around in my purse to pull out a new collar with a bell on it for Jet. I was tired of him sneaking up on me. Maybe hearing him coming would let me feel a little more in control.
I slip the red collar over his head. He hates it. He shakes his head furiously and paws at it, jingling all the way.
"Oh so you do show emotion,"I say dryly before I turned to head to my room. Like a responsible and very tired adult, I'm in bed by nine.
I fall asleep slowly. I was in the twilight between conciousness and unconsciousness when I hear it. The bell on the collar. It jingles loud and I hear an impact. The sound of the collar hitting a wall.
Oh well, I think. Dummy must have run into a wall. But it sounded like it was thrown, like it wasn't attached to a fat cat body. Maybe I should go look. But I feel so good in my bed. Sleep is about to take me. I'm just barely awake but not recording anything. Then I hear it, a chilling sound that makes my hair stand on end.
A sickly female moan, and its close. My eyes open and my heart start pounding. I lay frozen in bed unwilling to move. Maybe I dreamt it. A dream you swear you hear out loud.
I hear the subtle sound of my faux leather couch cushions rubbing against something. Was somebody on my couch? I had to check. Or run to Ella's.
I get up and slowly walk down the hallway. I see Jet's red collar snapped in half and laying at the end of the hallway. I smell a pungant chemical smell wafting by me. I slowly make the corner to peer into the livingroom. What I see freezes a scream in my throat.
Sitting on my couch is a naked slim white female with dark hair matted over her hanging head. The woman is slimy with patches of dark fur matted in blotches all over her body. The woman looks up to stare at me with green eyes, and with my face. She stares at me unblinking. When she finally blinks her green eyes turn to my blue eyes.
I can't believe it! This is crazy. Its a dream! Oh, God please let it be a dream! Where is Jet and why does this girl look exactly like me? I refuse to think Ella was right!
My double stands and looks at me. She absently brushes off the clumps of black cat fur. She stares at me then looks down at herself. Stares at me, then down at herself. Comparing my body to hers.
"What are you!?" I demand. She looks at me and copies my facial expression. An expression of terror.
"Wha-are yuh?" She repeats back to me in a low pitch."What...are...you?" She says in a slightly higher voice. She smiles and perfectly parrots back to me, "What are you!?"
Nope! That is enough! I turn and run to my door. I reach for the door knob when it begins to turn on its own. I hear keys jingling. It opens and two enormous maintenance men shove me back into my apartment. They stand as guardians blocking my exit. Without a word they part and Rachel strolls between them and into my livingroom.
What is going on? Why are they here?
"Help me!" I beg.
"Help me!" Copies my doppleganger. From behind me. Rachel smiles and turns to nod approval at my copy.
I begin backing away from all of them towards the far corner of my living room.
"I'm glad you matured so quickly, Lori," Rachel chimes.
"Thank you, Mistress," My copy replies. The copy points at the ground and says excitedly, " We can use the carpet she already has here!
" Yes, good," Rachel replies. She turns to the twin giants and says coldly, "Put her down."
One of the men begins to slip tight leather gloves on and the other pulls a thin wire out of a back pocket . They both begin to stalk towards me. Their massive frames blocking any chance of running around them.
I back up against my window. I turn and look out. Maybe I can jump. I start pulling on the bottom of the window. Its sealed shut!
Then I see it. I almost half expected it. And all hope flees from me. The van is outside idling. My hearse is waiting for me.
I feel powerful hands wrap around my neck from behind. The blood flowing to my brain is stopped. At least it will be quick. Before the life leaves me I hear Rachel.
"I need you to work fast, Lori. Only the neighbor woman is left ."
-ELLA'S END-
Lori didn't come by for our regular coffee and chat for the past two days. I was already worried for the young lady with all the things she told me the last time we talked. Now I was desperately wanting to check on her.
I knew when she came home from work so I positioned myself by my door to listen for her. When I heard her keys jingling I opened my door with Lil Bit on his leash.
"Oh Glori, How have you been?" No response. Lori still had her back turned fiddling with her keys.
"Gloooori?" I sang to her. Nothing. Okay you rude girl.
"Lori!" I shouted
Lori turned to face me with a blank look. Then a fake smile spread across her face. "Oh. Hello neighbor." She just turned back and slipped into her apartment. Closing the door sharply.
What. The. Frick. Did I do something to make her mad? Has she gone mad? Maybe it was me going mad.
I put Lil Bit down. I had been having mad thoughts lately about Bit. He had been acting different ever since I came home from choir practice yesterday. He wasn't his normal shakey self. He was quiet and still. Not even wagging his tale. Just like Lori's damn cat.
I just stared at him and he at me. Everything rushing through my head. The whole complex was changing. All the way from the landlady to the critters. I considered what I told Lori.
Doppelgangers!
"Well. I got something for you if that's the case," I told Lil Bit. And I didn't mean a treat. He just sat and stared.
Days passed with no contact from Lori. Lil Bit still was acting strange. Recording my every move with his eyes. I didn't have any dreams though. But two Ambiens at night may be the cause of that.
It all came to a head a week later. I was taking my afternoon nap when I heard it. The jingling of keys at my bedroom door. I removed my sleep mask and looked at the door.
"Who's there!" I shouted. I knew Frank was at work and he had the correct key to open the door anyways.
There was a long quiet pause. Then Lori's voice spoke up, " It's me, Ella. I need to talk. Open the door please."
I desperately started searching for my phone. I bought more time by asking, " Why didn't you ring the door bell?"
"Oh, I did!" Lori gave a fake laugh. "You didn't hear? Lets visit like we use to."
I found my phone and pulled up the app that showed the feed of my hidden camera. Thank God my Frank was paranoid and tech savvy. I pulled up the feed showing down the hallway from my room. I gasped in terror.
Lori stood by my door with a giant ring of keys in her hand. Behind her loomed the two monstrous maintenance men in there tan uniforms. They were hunched forward like football players waiting for the snap. Further behind them I could see Rachel in the livingroom. I squinted to make out a fifth figure in my apartment.
"Oh lord, oh no!" I exclaimed. It was me. Naked as the day God made me. Peeking over to look down the hallway. I was right. They were changelings, doppelgangers, mimics!
Lori quietly knocked and said something else. I didn't hear her. Grief had overtaken me. This means my friend was gone.
I opened my drawer and retrieved Ole Roland, my .45. I slide the slide back quietly to rack a round. I spoke over it to cover the tell-tell sound of metal on metal.
"I can see you, bitch! You're not Lori! I can see all of you waiting to pounce me! The real Lori knew about the camera!"
Fake Lori looked up into the camera and sighed and continued in a cold voice," We will get in, Ella. The longer it takes the more painful it will be for you. You and Frank are the last ones. No one here will help you."
Oh God! Frank was still normal. I had to get help for him. I may be lost but maybe I could save him. If I did enough damage. Caused enough commotion.
There was a heavy blow to my door. Twiddle Dee and Twiddle Dumb were pounding on it. They would be through in less than a minute.
I cancelled the app and dialed 911. I whispered my apartment address three times to the dispatcher and hid the phone under the bed. The top of the door caved in and a muscled arm reached through to grab the door knob on the other end.
They will have to clear the bed to get to me. I got them stacked up. Mag holds seven and there's five of them. They don't know I have a weapon though. They are cocky and overconfident. Why would a little old lady be packing heat? Maybe two bullets each for the big guys. Yeah, the math works out. Or maybe one for each and three for Rachel.
The door busted open and the goons rushed me. I leveled the gun at the first ones head.
Maybe I kill them all. Maybe the gun jams and they get me. They're all on video and the cops will come when they hear the screams regardless. But God I pray I get to punish at least one of them! They took my friend, her cat, and might take my Frank! But this is not the worst of their sins, I scream as I squeeze the trigger.
"They took my dog!"
submitted by cesly1987 to nosleep [link] [comments]


2020.05.02 09:33 Justwonderinif Timeline X

<<< Timeline IX
2009, continued

2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
submitted by Justwonderinif to Gilliverse [link] [comments]


2019.12.15 15:12 darkcrusaderares Restroom camera hidden mens

First: spoilers, obviously.
So, you know how if you put something in Google Translate, take the result, translate that into another language, rinse and repeat a few times and then translate it back into its original language, you end up with something that barely resembles what you started with? I decided to try it with the dialogue for the first trial of V3 and share some of the highlights.
You'd imagine names would be an issue here and you'd be right. Most of the time, they just lost a letter. But some of them...just became something completely different.
Gonta would sometimes come out as "Shingles," Kaede sometimes turned into "bathtub." Tsumugi became "gun," Miu turned into "Matthew," Shuichi turned into "list" and Rantaro, oh lord Rantaro's name came up more in the trial than anyone else's and was rarely spelt the same way twice.
We got Lantra, Lant, Atlanta, Rentaro, Lantero, Lanter, Latro, Rantar, Rentar, Lanterra and Lantern!
With that explained, onto the highlights. The original text will be in quotes, with Google's translation underneath.

Monokuma: Vote correctly, and only the blackened will be punished. But if you pick the wrong person…I’ll punish everyone besides the blackened, and that person will graduate from this academy!
If you vote correctly, you will only receive a black penalty. But if you choose the wrong person ... then I will punish everyone except darkness and he will go through this academy!
Kaede: Don’t play dumb with me! Who’s the mastermind controlling you guys!?
Don't cheat on me! It dominates you
Kaede: Alright, let’s do this! We can find the mastermind if we work together! When this class trial is over, we’ll know exactly who the mastermind is!
If we cooperate, we will find an employer! At the end of this hour you will know exactly who the champion is!
Angie: Rantaro was alone in the library.
The culprit could’ve snuck up on him.
Atlanta was alone in the library. The culprit was his eyesight.
Ryoma: What was he even doin’ in the library anyway?
After all, didn't he do it in the library?
Maki: Also, if the mastermind had died there, this killing game would’ve already ended.
Kirumi: You are correct…The possibility of him being the mastermind is quite low.
Besides, if the spirit of Master had died there, this killing game would have ended.
You're right ... he's very likely to be the boss.
Miu: So after the mastermind lured Rantaro and murdered his ass…they used Kaediot and Poo-ichi’s hidden cameras to arrange the perfect crime!
After Master seduced Lantra and killed her ass ... they use Pooch's caddy and a hidden camera to prepare for the perfect crime!
Kokichi: You yap about teamwork and all that, but you still think one of us is the mastermind…
You are lying about teamwork and even more, but I still think one of us is the ghost.
Kokichi: Wow…Another reference we don’t get. Heh, you must be a hardcore loser.
Wow ... we no longer have references. Hey, you're definitely a hardware retailer.
Miu: Hey! Don’t be actin’ all cocky, Kokichi! You put my ass in the hot seat earlier! How about you just keep your fuckin’ mouth shut, you lyin’ little abortion!
ABOUT! Do not use coke! I quickly undressed! Why not close your mouth and have an abortion?
Korekiyo: No…not the entire time. At one point, Tsumugi went to the restroom.
No ... not always. At one point a gun entered the bathroom.
Kaede: I don’t think that’s possible. And I know the reason why. Tsumugi can only cosplay as fictional characters.
Tsumugi: That’s what cosplay was supposed to be in the first place! Lately, some people prefer to cosplay as non-fictional characters, which is unforgivable…It’s so unforgivable that I break out in cospox if I even attempt it…
Kaede: Yeah, the cospox was pretty gross…
Ryoma: I see…If that;s the case, then there’s no way you could’ve been in disguise. Sorry about that, Tsumugi. I just thought it was something to check.
I think it's impossible. And I know why. They can wear my father's hands as an imaginary sign.
It was cosplay! Recently some people prefer cosplay as fiction fiction fiction ... It's not cool and you get into cosplay even if you try ...
Yes, the fox was pretty bad
Well ... if so, you can't hide it. Sorry, Gun Here, I thought I should check it out.
Kokichi: Aww, Tsumugi is so nice! She’s way better than Miu!
It's so tasty! It's better than methamphetamine!
Gonta: Gonta is gentleman! Gentleman not hurt people!
Shingles are gentlemen! The Lord does not hurt!
Tenko: Yes! Neo-Aikido even uses wooden swords!
Yes, neo-aikido also uses trees!
Shuichi: The sliding door across from the rear entrance, correct?
Is it a tailgate right in front of the tailgate?
Kirumi: Yes, the act of throwing a shot put ball could lead one to use it as a weapon.
Keebo: Even if a person couldn’t fit through the space, a shot put ball certainly would.
Yes, the bullet can use the bullet as a weapon.
Although no one can cross the universe, the bullet firing is like that.
Tenko: A typical degenerate male excuse!
The common justification of the common man is justification!
Monokuma: Are you stupid or something? I can’t stand people having a good time!
Are you stupid or something? I can't entertain people!
Angie: Supah serious, bruddah.
Tenko: Your Atua sounds like a shady weirdo!
The water wave is serious and unforgivable.
Your attic looks weird!
Shuichi: I don’t think the hidden door was ever used. Whilst investigating the mastermind, I placed dust on the card reader. If anyone swiped their card key, the dust would have fallen.
I don't think a hidden door was used. I did a brain test and pulled out a card reader. If someone scratches the key of the card, the lie disappears.
Ryoma: Rejoin everyone, and we’d be none the wiser.
If everyone gets involved again, we won't be intelligent.
Gonta: Shuichi would never do that. Right, Shuichi?
The list will never do that. It's not like that?
Monosuke: Yeah, but there’s one thing we do know. The line between victim and attacker ain’t as clear as you might think.
Yes, but we need to know something. The boundary between the victim and the r***** is not so clear. (You can figure out the censor for yourself)
Kokichi: Nee-heehee…So the Ultimate Detective is the killer. What a plot twist!
Your ... best spy killer. Really twist my pussy!
Tenko: Umm…I do wanna believe Kaede, but Shuichi does seem pretty suspicious. He has been strangely quiet for a while now...which is classic degenerate male behaviour.
Hmm ... I want to believe in the bathtub, but the list seems suspicious. Still quiet ... it's a classic action for men.
Monokuma: The Ultimate Academy is proud to present its very own morphenomenal trial grounds!
Ultimate Academy is proud to present its referees!
Kaede: From now on, you’re going to carry on my wish! You’re going to protect everyone!
From now on you will always want me! You will protect everyone!
Kaede: It’s important to establish where the culprit used the shot…
It is important to determine where the shooter used the gun.
Miu: What if Rantaro’s corpse moved on it’s own!?
Like, he was standin’ under the vent when the shot hit his head…
What if the tenant's body were operated automatically?
It was as if the attacker had hit him in the head, eating under the sword.
Shuichi: Miu, I recall that during the investigation…You said that you would use your drone to make a floor plan.
Meat, I'm checking ... You said you were going to make plans with the robot.
Kaito: Don’t worry, Kaede! I’ll clear your name!
Don't worry, Cade! I'll delete my name!
Kaito: I refuse to believe that Kaede is the culprit!
I can't believe how guilty I am!
Kaede: Don’t look away from the truth!
Avoid the truth! (No seriously, that's what it came back as after translating several times.)
Shuichi: I had my own plan to find the mastermind, and someone offered to help me.
I was going to find a gentleman and someone offered me help.
Shuichi: After the cameras were set, the culprit and I climbed the stairs to the 1st floor classroom.
After installing the camera I hit the snipers and went to the first class.
And that was about it.
submitted by darkcrusaderares to danganronpa [link] [comments]


2019.11.13 19:40 AsCloseAsICanGet [HR] The Outfield - part one

I've been writing short fiction for some time, but never posted on Reddit until now. Thank you for reading.
Submitted in two parts.

THE OUTFIELD
I am in a cafe called “The Vault,” named because the building was once a bank before someone turned it into a restaurant. The eponymous vault must have been too unwieldy to disassemble or remove or strip down piece by piece. (I’m not sure how one removes a bank vault from a building.) The retrofitter-redesigners just left the vault inside. They don’t have tables in there, nor do they keep ingredients and stuff in the vault.
The cafe, in a three-story building of burnt clay brick and iron-gated entrances to upstairs apartments, is not clean. But it’s not “unclean”--the windows are grimy and have neon signs sucker-stuck to them advertising the name. This is one of those cafes where the grime is the point: the thick particle cloud of cooking potatoes is as embedded as the bank vault. Hot, salty oils hit my nose when I walk in; potatoes cooked in spices I can’t identify, massive Sunday-newspaper-size piles frying from opening to close.
The owner meets me at the door when I walk in. A small Korean woman in a Chicago Bears sweater who recognizes me instantly, the I know you from TV! smile that’s all teeth and dark, spotty gums. Anywhere between sixty and ninety-nine years old. There’s no hostess station or even a sign that says whether to seat yourself or wait to be seated. Just the owner, whose name is Claudia.
The I know you from TV! is in her greeting, too. “Mister Campbell! Thank you for coming! Thank you!” I almost want to apologize in advance. I smile like my producers would want me to. I don’t need the “total jerk when the camera’s not rolling” stories from a local business owner making it onto the internet. I tell her that I’m grateful she’s made the time to see me. “My aunt and uncle ran a restaurant for 17 years. There’s really never a dull moment, I’m sure.” I say this to every restaurant owner, and also mention it to the hotel owners for good measure.
Claudia doesn’t say anything else immediately, but nods and gestures toward the booth I would have chosen if given the option. It’s by the window facing a shadier side of the street with a lot of foot traffic and people watching outside. I sling my laptop bag, complete with my digital recorder and a legal pad, into the booth and slide in after on one side. Claudia sits across from me.
A flower pot-sized mug of coffee is brought immediately by a young Mexican guy with an impeccably-pressed white shirt. Whether he brings coffee without me ordering because (1) on the hit show “Beyond Perception With Aaron Campbell” my reliance on coffee now borders on a running gag as of Season Eight, or (2) whether this is just how the restaurant gets down, I can’t be sure. But I like the place. I’ll feel good about this episode.
Claudia Rhe raises both eyebrows like the magic trick is already over. “So?”
After eight seasons and traveling hotels, restaurants, bars, hunting lodges, amusement parks, state parks, and correctional facilities around North America and Europe, I know what she wants right now. She wants me to say:
“I’m definitely feeling something here. But you already knew that.” Or:
“I am… glad… you called me.”
And I’m supposed to say the words like I’m impressed by some quality not apparent to the naked eye, like an appraiser on Antiques Roadshow.
I have a ton of these throwaway mysticism comments, but I don’t use any of them right now. I use them on camera; saying them in real life makes me feel like a huckster.
So tell me all about your restaurant!” We’re going to do this again on camera, obviously. My production people have already told me the stories about The Vault Cafe, and while I’m sure there are “travel shows” where some production assistant, and not the on-air talent, does the legwork of meeting a cafe owner, this show is different: I’m not the host. I’m the ‘paranormal investigator.’
And yes: apparently “Beyond Perception” is listed under “travel shows” if you DVR it.
“So when we first opened? I did not believe in ghosts.” People tell me this because they believe it gives them unimpeachable credibility. “The person who showed us the space, she said, you can make a restaurant, but do not use the vault. She told me how…”
Claudia Rhe is about to get into the stories about the little girl who died in the bank vault back in either the 1920s or the 1970s, or the regular customer who (one assumes) got shot within a quarter-mile of the restaurant. She referenced more than a few spectral origin stories in her first email. I stop her, as politely as I can.
“No. Restaurant-wise: how long have you been open? How many employees?” I glance down at a paper menu in a thick plastic case with green stitching on the edges. “Best thing to get on the menu?”
Fortunately, Claudia Rhe doesn’t seem disappointed. She points me toward a green onion and mushroom omelette. As expected, she recommends the home fries.
“I’m not trying to capture ghosts on film, or prove their existence with changes in static or temperature,” I once told an interviewer in Us Weekly. “Science requires observable things that can be detected using the same methods over and over. ‘Ghosts,’ or ‘spirits,’ or whatever words you want to use for what people are describing, can’t be observed whenever we want to look. So using a static-detecting wand or a really sensitive thermometer isn’t going to one day prove that ghosts exist. What I’m saying is this: there are things in the human experience that no one understands, despite spectacular scientific tools available to us with which to understand them--consciousness is the most obvious. What we understand about the universe and what’s actually playing out are two totally different things. Across cultures and periods of history, people describe the deceased communicating with the living in strikingly similar ways. My show is a part of that: cataloguing the places and people who have connected, and telling their stories.”
The Us Weekly article ran only the last two sentences of what I’d said in a narrow column of text next to a photo of me in an abandoned diner in Salton Sea, California. In the photo, I wore an oxford shirt without a tie, sitting at the counter with a smashed jukebox caked in dust behind me looking like wreckage from a nuclear blast. I was holding my signature cup of coffee with a finger looped in the handle and a Fox Mulder the-truth-is-out-there expression on my face.
So, yes: it was cheesy as hell and maybe ought to be embarrassing. However, the article is framed in the living room of my house. It was Us Weekly--how often in your life do you get to be in a glossy magazine?
Of course, I didn’t tell the interviewer the truth: the reason I don’t carry around ghost hunter “e-meter” wands or temperature readers is only partly because they make you look like someone’s crackpot uncle. I don’t carry any “ghost hunting” tools because there are no ghosts to hunt, and no afterlife tugging fervently at those lost souls with unfinished business in the mortal realm. Our scariest ghost stories aren’t as scary as what actually happens. I suspect most people telling ghost stories (and leading sermons) know as much on some level.
The point of my show is this: everyone loves being scared, and with a little bit of spooky music and night-vision photography, my show foots the bill. But more than that, I love road trips and travel and a good bite to eat. While my show features creaks and unexplained glass breaking from time to time, I try to feature out-of-the-way locales that are worth a visit. Regardless of how gruesome the history or how high the body count “our team of researchers” discovers for a particular locale, our producers are careful to shoot hotel rooms and plates of food to make everything look comfortable as your living room sofa or savory-like-Mom-used-to-make with steam rising off the plates.
My goal is to drum up enough business for the places where we shoot to make it worth their while. I have nine framed letters--also in my living room, and more prominently displayed than my glossy Us Weekly--from five hotel owners and four restaurateurs, thanking me for saving their businesses.
So I sleep pretty well at night. Or I would if not for all that late-night coffee. Hardy-har-har.
Claudia Rhe and the Vault Cafe are going to make for a great episode: the line cooks are a pleasant bunch of guys who wear baseball caps while they cook and bark good-natured banter back and forth with a couple of regulars at the counter who sport VFW shirts and caps. The food itself is well-seasoned; egg and potato dishes are spiced with fresh oregano and peppers cut in tiny squares of bright, high-contrast confetti, and the home fries are tinged gold from seasoned oil that crystalizes on the cut faces of the spuds. For the show’s purposes, I don’t give two hoots about how the food tastes, but my producers harp on me enough about how the food has to have the right look such that I have an eye for whether a Denver omelette will pop in HD or not.
As for the ghost story? The aforementioned “team of researchers” will get a few historical photos of gangsters from the 1920s or spooky girls in dresses that call back to Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, and they’ll dissolve an establishing shot into a mugshot of some schmuck who robbed a bank within a mile and a decade of Vault Cafe’s antecedent life as a savings and loan establishment. Our producers will sit me in a booth across from Claudia Rhe and any faithful patrons who noticed a stack of napkins getting knocked over or a dish breaking that no one owned up to. Put the two together, and put me at the countertop with a cup of coffee at “3:30 a.m.” to shout at a few pre-recorded banging sounds? As my father Brian Campbell would have said: you got yourself a ballgame.
I gather up my laptop bag and say my goodbyes to Ms. Rhe. Our production staff will be in touch next, I tell her, but I keep my language unambiguous: “We’re 100% a go. We could start shooting in a week if that works for you.”
She hugs me as tight as her tiny frame will allow, which amounts to a pythonesque cinch on my chest that shortens a breath. “Thank you.” This show is going to be good for business; we both know it. Eight seasons later, I don’t get tired of the everyday graciousness people offer me when I visit the bars and hotels and restaurants: I’m not much of a celebrity--no illusions there--but strong handshakes when I meet the owners, a fancy chocolate on my pillow from some local sweet shop a few blocks away? A good cup of coffee sometime between 5:30 am and 1:30 am?
Sometimes I think: This is actually my job, and I know that life is every bit as good as advertised. I excuse myself to use the restroom before I leave and part ways with Ms. Claudia Rhe.
Walking to leave the Vault Cafe, a guy sitting at the countertop who looks about my age--this is to say, some age between hard-living 31 and well-preserved 44--gives me the you’re on TV eyebrow raise with his coffee cup at his lips. His plate is already pushed away from the eating edge of the counter with a wadded napkin sitting in the middle like a blooming flower. He tips up the mug of coffee and cranes his neck to get the last dreg as I pass him. I put my palms on the pushbar of the better-traveled of the two swinging doors and step out into a Chicago summer so hot that walking out onto the street is like walking into a block of microwaved bubble gum. My car is two blocks away, and already I can tell the distance will be oppressive because of the heat.
The guy from the counter at the cafe is walking beside me before I know it.
“So I like your show, but if I can say: the concept of ghosts? Inherently racist.”
I have two blocks to travel, and yes, the words that just came out of this man’s are those of a paranoid schizophrenic, however my fellow cafe patron has a lilt to his voice that hits me the right way, and he’s dressed in a smart pair of almost-black blue jeans, a clean grey t-shirt, and a throwback Cubs cap. If insane, he hides it reasonably well.
“That I don’t know about,” I offer back. “But the ghosts? Realize that most of these ghosts were from the early twentieth century at the latest. So yeah, most ghosts are probably racist, if you get down to it. I don’t get to have much by way of a ‘dialogue’ with them about social issues.”
“No. I mean the concept of ghosts that you present in your show is racist.”
Our shadows amble alongside one another’s, stumps of equal length bobbing along the sidewalk. The concrete under my feet so hot I could feel it through my shoes. I wondered if feeling the heat through the soles of his shoes bothered the stranger beside me or if this was something a person could ever get used to. “I’ll bite: why is that?”
“Your show has been on for like ten years, right?”
I pause as though measuring his answer. “About.”
“Number of black ghosts on your show?”
I thought about it. There have to have been. Gettysburg, right? The trips to New Orleans?
While I was thinking, the stranger snorted. “Right? Probably never thought about it, even. Ghosts are little white girls in dresses looking for their mommies and their dollies. Ghosts are Civil War soldiers trying to be reunited with their brides, or businessmen gunned down in a bank holdup from the 1930s.”
I nod and smile my thanks for watching smile. “You may have a point here. This might be something we have to take up with our producers. Seek out places with more,” I catch a moment of white-privilege-political-correctness before I choke out the word, “black ghosts.”
He talks with his hands, his body language professorial if he weren’t too young. One in the pocket of his jeans, the other hand he holds up emphasizing a point with his thumb and index finger gripping an imaginary piece of chalk. “What I’m saying is that the ghost stories you tell have the common theme of someone with unfinished business on earth being unable to move on to the next world. Someone’s earthly business is so important to themselves, or their family, or their worldview-existence-ka-whatever, that when left unfinished at the time the body expires, a soul can’t float up to heaven in the natural course of business, but is anchored to the ground and tied to the spot of their death with chains made of neodymium magnets.
“The way you’ve presented your program has already made a statement on race: all the business in the world so pressing and important so as to shackle a soul by its little Casper-tail is being done by white people.”
He’s smiling while he says this, so I venture a smile back. “You’ve got me there.”
“But the statement is bigger: by framing your show on the lens of ‘souls taken from the earth before their time,’ then when those ‘souls’ are exclusively white, you’re saying that black people dying young--tragically, unforgivably, violently--you’re saying that’s just the natural order of things. That black people dying young and violent deaths is ordinary and natural; white people dying in the same circumstances is unnatural.”
We’re close to my rental car, so I need to wrap up what has the makings of a B+ undergraduate thesis at Northwestern. But when I speak I find myself concerned about being misquoted later, so my words come out in a halting rhythm only after being internally vetted: “Okay, I’m not making a statement on race. At all. My show. Is about ghosts. Not race. Our locations are brought to us by business owners who contact our production crew. We don’t even select the possible shooting locations.”
“Do you ever question how long a soul will linger on the earth? Bound by their unfinished business, how long is it until a ghost is either able to finish up their mortal task--what’s the average time it takes a ghost to avenge a death? Or, if not up to the lingering challenges of the corporeal realm, how long until a ghost just gives up and floats away like a mylar balloon?”
My rental car is a Dodge Charger. I rent cars so often the desk will just give me the flashiest sedan they have on the lot. It’s not even the car I would have picked, but whatever. I double-tap the key fob and the hazard lights wink at us twice to say that my role in the conversation has reached a terminus.
“I’ve never thought about it that way.”
“You, who’ve hosted a show about spiritual matters for almost a decade. Never thought about the hard logistics of the hereafter?”
“Unanswerable questions don’t keep the lights on.”
“While you’re staying in Chicago, would you have any interest in encountering a ghost that is not confined to an airport Howard Johnson or a Shoney’s?”
I’m around the front bumper of my Charger, and though I guarantee my meter expired twenty minutes before, the windshield remains mercifully ticket-free. I look back at him with a smile as I approach the driver’s door. “Thanks for watching the show. And thanks for the conversation.”
The stranger’s feet are planted firmly on the sidewalk, shoulder-width apart. I could have sworn the day was a hundred degrees, cloudless sky, a second ago. A single cloud is rolling over the sky like an errant cueball, casting us in a green-grey light and sweeping trash along the sidewalk in a small gust. The man I’ve been speaking to is no more than five-foot-eight, standing in a pair of Adidas soccer shoes. For a moment, his skin looks blacker than black, like an arrowhead made of volcanic glass, or the black of a black hole swallowing up the surrounding light, and I’m struck by the sensation that he’s looking down at me from a few inches, as though my ankles have been swallowed up by sand.
“Proof of life after death. If I could offer it, to your satisfaction, without any reservations or you giving me anything other than the hour it would take to prove it, would you want it?”
My ankles. Swallowed up by sand.
It might be that he’s saying the words again for emphasis, or it might be that my lunch left me lightheaded. But I hear the words again. Proof of life after death.
I don’t stay at anything less than a four-star hotel. First four seasons of my hit show “Beyond Perception With Aaron Campbell”? I stayed anywhere. This meant hundred-dollar-a-night-if-I’m-lucky spots near convention centers or the fourteenth-story stack Holiday Inn’s they’ve started building next to every airport in America. This meant the same anonymous burnt plastic odor in the walls and the sheets; the kazoo whine of a vacuum running somewhere on some floor that wasn’t yours. Small showers in cheap tubs with the occasional used bar of credit card-sized soap left behind by the last occupant. A breakfast, offered on the premise that there was nowhere else in immediate walking or driving distance from which you could obtain white bread, bananas, or packets of peanut butter and jelly.
I remember when the ratings came back for the fourth season--the single line I added to the rider list I made with my executive producer over dinner:
Aaron Campbell stays at four-star accommodations unless impossible to obtain because of production demand.
I’m reading my Kindle on a white down comforter of a king size bed, with a floor-to-ceiling view of Wrigley Park a hundred feet below me. My room is dead silent.
In the pocket of my jacket at the desk across the room, one of my headshots is folded over on itself hamburger-style, with a cell phone number written across the back. The man I spoke to this afternoon offered his number with a 773 area code. His name was Jay, but wrote it out as “J--” above the number, so I don’t know what his name actually is.
The air outside has cooled considerably to the low seventies. I’ve taken my jeans off, but my t-shirt is still on, so getting dressed again wouldn’t be much trouble. I do not know where “Jay” would want me to travel tonight, anyway, or how long it would take me to get there. Or, if I pulled out my own phone and texted him, if he’d still even take me along to show me iron-clad proof of the hereafter.
I stay at nice hotels nowadays. But like I already said: the only reason I got this job in the first place is because I’m somebody who likes to see the sights.
“Did I miss my window?”
“Nope. It only just got dark. Wouldn’t be until after eleven that things really get cooking anyway.”
“Okay, so you’re still in? You still want to show me a ghost?”
“I don’t think you’ll just see one. And I don’t know what you’ll see per se, but you’ll get more ghost than you can handle.”
I laugh. “Where do I meet you?”
“Baseball diamond off Exchange Avenue. It’s on the block between the YMCA and the Walgreens.”
I pause a second and almost ask, “What have you seen there?” “Whose ghost is there?” and, most ridiculously, “Is this a scam?” as though that would yield a useful reply. I pause for long enough that Jay responds to what I haven’t said:
“It’s different for everybody. But you’ll see. You’ll see, I guarantee you that.
The drive over was mostly freeway and I drove most of the way listening to a best-of Dire Straits album on Spotify. When my phone told me which off-ramp to take, I had to hit the brakes almost immediately to account for three tattered Coleman tents set up at the base of the intersection. Two men in white t-shirts with large airbrushed lettering stood along the solid white line separating my lane from the shoulder. I caught eyes with one man and then looked dead-ahead. I drove past him with his eyes on me the whole time, like he was stunned anyone was using the off-ramp at all.
And now, with my doors locked and my engine running I’m parked across the street from a baseball diamond ringed by a chain link fence maybe twelve feet high. Candy wrappers and gatorade bottles are mortared into every conceivable inch where the base of the fence meets the sidewalk. The street is potholed like a roadway in Dresden. If I need to drive fast to get out of here, I’m worried whether the car could survive it without damaging the undercarriage.
It takes me a second to confirm with Jay that he’s here, and when I see his phone light up about forty yards away, I unlock my car door and set my foot down on the concrete.
Inside the baseball diamond, shadowed in bugzapper streetlights, the grass is spotted and shows history since the years before when someone went through the trouble to sod and delineate an outfield. Scars in the dirt show lingering trace evidence of violent juvenile cleats rounding second with abandon. The oppressive heat and the lack of regular maintenance has left the grass brittle, white. Where I parked my car, a steel garbage can that’s bolted to the sidewalk has doubled over, smashed along one side like someone hit in the stomach spilling their lunch onto the street.
Jay is standing outside the fence, close to the first base line. He gives me a glance when I park and another when I close my car door to head his way, but otherwise his eyes are fixed at some point on the baseball diamond I can’t make, with fingers laced into the fence and hands up as high as his head. As I walk toward him I notice the house across the street from where he stands. It’s a Victorian with faded lavender paint and white trim. A low picket fence of unpainted wood rings a bare front yard. Someone has spray painted the slats making up the gate of the fence with black paint, one letter for each of the four boards of the gate:
M R D R
“In the last three years, eight people have been shot in a block of this spot. Three were shot right here.” Jay is talking to me while I’m still in the middle of the street. When I get close and stand beside him, he nods to the outfield. “No lights, you know. So when people want to settle anything without being seen they do it here.” That’s all he says by way of greeting. He hasn’t looked at me.
“If you’re looking for the freezing haunt of souls taken from the earth before their time, you could go to Gettysburg. But that’s like going into King Tut’s tomb if you want to take a whiff of a rotten onion or a dead rat. What’s out there,” and this time he just nods with his eyebrows, “would be like sticking your head in a dumpster after a three-week garbage strike. This is fresh. This all just happened.”
“So we just stand here?”
“No. If you want, you walk from the gate near the coach’s box onto the field. Just walk from first base out to the foul line of left field and walk back.”
“That’s all? I’ll meet a ghost if I walk, what, a hundred yards?”
“You’ll get a whiff.”
“Can they hurt me?”
He doesn’t say anything for a long while, and his eyes avoid mine like he’s embarrassed by something. He finally speaks with a little bit of disgust. “They hurt everybody. But you won’t die.”
I turn toward the hinge in the fence and the horseshoe-shaped latch that’s keeping it closed. There’s a chain hooked through the fence near the latch from when someone wanted to keep the field closed after hours, but even in the low light I can see two busted links. The chain is so powdered thick with rust I make sure to avoid touching it. Before going onto the field I catch sight of a U-haul truck that looks like someone is or once was living inside it. The side of the truck shows how bats use sonar to guide themselves through the caves that make up the midwest. Across the side of the truck someone has sprayed foot-high letters in white paint:
COME ON OUT FAGOT
KILL YOU
As I lift the latch, my stomach is in knots. I am not thinking much about ghosts.
Walking from first to second base is longer than I imagined. First base is an actual first base--a rubber tile set into the dirt with a hole for a peg if someone wanted to install a real bag there for a game. Second base, from what I can see, is just a hole. I walk the line between first and second, struck by the compulsion to break into a dead sprint. It’s the same, I suspect, as when I once did a charity run a few years ago in Los Angeles: they’d closed down a whole section of the 405 but I spent the whole run checking over my shoulder for cars.
Your gut knows what a place is for, even if your brain wants to say it’s something different.
Every step I’m expecting a ghostly landmine, or that a porthole to hell will open below my foot if I don’t step lightly. I’m a few feet away from second when I’m struck by thirst. It takes me back to being thirsty the way you are as a kid, standing in line for the drinking fountain. If I don’t drink water right now I’m going to die--that level of thirst. The pain in my throat is sudden, arresting, and so dry that the space where my uvula meets my tongue tastes like pennies and in one insane moment I pat myself down for a stashed-away bottle of water. As though I would have brought something like that and just forgotten it.
I whirl around to look for somewhere to get water. Like I’ll go for a garden hose at my feet, but there isn’t one.
Jay is gone, and as I’m about to yell out for him, I realize my thirst is gone, too, like a cloudburst.
I walk back toward first base, scanning between the coaches boxes, and then out to the cars in the adjoining street. I cannot see Jay. Where the hell is he? I’m about to yell but realize that yelling might not be a smart move, given what he’s said about this park.
What I’ve seen. M R D R kill you
From behind me, I hear myself scream at the top of my lungs:
“Jaaay! You here?”
I come close to tripping myself on my heel as I spin around to the voice from behind me. There is, of course, no one there: just the dirt leading to second base and the dead grass marking the outfield.
Nothing, of course, except the hole marking second base. I give the hole a side-of-my-eye inspection as I pass by, heading dutifully toward the outfield. I could have walked closer to the hole, but I don’t. The grass crunches when I take a step onto the outfield. An uncomfortable idea crosses my mind: that the sound of my own voice was coming from the hole in the ground. It takes some effort, but I keep moving away from the hole, and moving away from the idea too.
I spend the trip to left field on high alert. I hear myself again Jaaay you here in my head, expecting to hear it again, but I don’t. The most unnatural thing I encounter along the way is a wrapper for a package of chocolate gem doughnuts. By the time I’m at the fence, my nerves are shot by fears that I’m going to find myself in a conversation with a demonic version of myself, or that the second base hole will start vomiting spiders, or--because my survival instincts are still intact--I’m still afraid I’ll be straight-up mugged in the middle of a field. Nothing, though.
Just the wrapper for the gem doughnuts. Nothing out Jaaay you here of the ordinary.
At the fence that runs ten feet wide of where I’d mark the foul ball line, the fence runs just as high as it runs on the other side. I approach it but do not touch. Some deep part of my brain--the part that doesn’t want to step on cracks and probably would have made a formidable hunter-gatherer--tells me that if I touch the fence, then the whole flood of supernatural forces kick off right then and there and I’ll be up to my neck in caustic spectral phenomenon and the like. This triggers the intellectual counter-reaction you’d expect: I resolve to touch that chain-link fence and run my fingers across it.
Stick out my hand Jaaay you here and I touch the fence. When I run my fingers along the chains it makes my fingers reverberate with a pleasant numbness.
“You made it.” Jay is on the other side of the fence, closer down by the third base line and running his fingers along the chain as he saunters toward me. His smile is warm and energetic enough that for a moment I’m not on a haunted baseball diamond, and he seems like someone approaching me to ask, hey, a buddy of mine had to work today, would I fill in as shortstop?
I smile back and tell him about hearing my own voice coming from behind me, and as I tell it, my enthusiasm kicks up in a way it hasn’t in years--the feeling of meeting up with friends who’ve spent the day separately touring the same amusement park.
Jay’s face lights up: “People see weird stuff here, man.” He’s almost giggling; happy, maybe, that a bona-fide ghost hunter has been through his baseball diamond and seen the appreciably-unsettling sights. This enthusiasm he’s got, this amusement park feeling, is so charged in the air between the fence and our eyes that we might catch sparks: proof of something bigger than a walk in a baseball diamond; something real I’ve found after eight years of people pointing me at empty tombs, empty nests, rat-trap motels with mothball sheets and grease spot diners with nothing more haunting than the stink of overcooked eggs.
Jay’s face has something bigger in it; the excitement catches and runs from the top of my head down to my heels and I’m smiling ear to ear. And with my waking mind in this new amusement park with Jay, I almost don’t catch the wisp-thin trail of a thought somewhere in the brick and mortar of my brain:
How did Jay manage to walk around the perimeter of a baseball diamond in the time I cut straight across it?
I’m looking at Jay and it’s like he’s caught sight of an old girlfriend or the smell of last week’s trash sitting under his nose; the spark and the smile and the amusement park flame are all snuffed out under his shadowed brow, the shadows so deep I can’t see his eyes now.
“Why didn’t you ever get married, man?”
Jay is speaking to me, looking right at me. My hands aren’t on the fence, but at my sides like a kid being scolded in the principal’s office. And with my tongue too numb and paralyzed to answer I can only think: I am married. Shauna and I have been married six years. I’m wearing a damned wedding ring.
Jay shakes his head slowly. “Not in your heart, you didn’t get married. That’s why you travel so much. You know it won’t work out.” And his voice, a good-spirited black guy from Chicago, is gone now. It’s Shauna’s father speaking, North Dakota-cold and drinking hoarse. The words he said when he’d pulled me aside at our wedding, walking together underneath an oak tree on the country club where we got married: “You hurt my Shauna and I’ll kill ya.” I never told anyone that Shauna’s father said those words.
Jay is gone, of course, like a set of car keys--I knew where he was and then he wasn’t there at all. I was wrong about him ever having been there in the first place.
And the fence, two feet in front of my face, has grown thirty feet in height in the last three seconds. It is an upsetting thing to see, of course, but my mind accepts it easier this time like the second dose of nasty medicine: if this baseball field could play tricks with my sense of sound, of course, then why couldn’t it play tricks on my eyes too?
Playing tricks. That’s all this is. I touch the fence again for good measure, just to prove to Jay--or Satan, or the ghosts from Field of Dreams or whoever--that I am going from first base to left field, and back again. Just like Jay said I’m supposed to.
Turning around, I can see the infield is an easy three hundred yards back to the gate where I’d come from originally. My throat goes dry all anew, but not thirsty. I don’t pat myself for water or look for a hidden cache of gatorade in the outfield this time, because now I am, if not certain, then at least respectful of whatever eyes might be on me right now. Being afraid, or showing that I am afraid, is the wrong move. The old saying: approach dogs with confidence, not fear.
Probably applies to ghosts, right?
Having turned my back to the fence, Jay speaks to me over the shoulder again: “Eight people have been shot here, dude. Of course this place is haunted.”
My phone rings and the shock of it pulls my skin snug across my whole body in goosebumps, wringing a few drops of piss into my pants.
The ring isn’t my ringtone (classic guitar riff from Purple Haze) but is a standard mid-90’s Nokia ring. I pull out my iPhone and see the words NO CALLER ID at the top of the screen, with the coin-sized red and green buttons for answering and rejecting the call at the bottom.
I click the green button to answer, and as I lift the phone to my ear, I hear static.
On my phone’s screen, the green button for “talk” has changed to purple.
I hit the button to answer the call again and hear a sound like a radio tuning, a voice barely audible like a radio that hasn’t quite been tuned to the right frequency:
--known at this time and authorities have not speculated as to the origin of these spacecraft. And then nothing. I look down to see that my phone’s screen is so black that the glass no longer has a reflection. Black like a mineshaft in the middle of the night. I try to tap the screen with my thumb and my thumb plunges through the space where the screen ought to be. A feeling like I’ve put my hand in a meat freezer races up my arm and I yank my thumb back. I’m afraid to drop the phone for fear of it exploding or turning into a phone-shaped spider.
Aaron, honey, oh please god pick up baby.
“Mom?” I shout into the phone, aiming my voice down the pocket-sized wormhole in my hand. The glass screen on my phone, of course, has returned. It was never gone.
Aaron, there’s a man in the house. He’s downstairs and he says he’s going to burn the house! Oh God, baby, I can smell gasoline. What do I do?
I sputter the words on top of each other: “Mom Jesus you need to call nine one one right now Mom call the police.”
My mom’s voice is raspy, like she’s sick. Aaron he’s in the house, but it’s going to be okay, she says.
“Mom, call the police right now.”
Aaron, it’s okay, because he’s in the house, but I’m not. I’m so fat that when I sit around the house I sit around the house!
I can’t take the chance that this is a joke. It’s her voice. It’s not her. But I start to fall into the loop in my mind. I know it’s her voice. I know my mother’s voice.
Aaron, baby, authorities are asking citizens not to panic. Three more craft arrived this morning. Seven unidentified aircraft, Aaron. Each one a quarter-mile long. They’re going to kill us all, Aaron. Nuclear weapons have been used on four American cities.
I stare at my phone now, for a moment hypnotized. The weightless feeling of low blood sugar or a severe headrush rocks me onto my toes and for a moment I tip over, knees locked. I’m on my hands and knees. The thirst is back now, but the dryness at the back of my throat has been replaced with a stabbing sensation, as though I’ve swallowed Halloween candy with an inch-long sewing needle and realized it only after I’ve already swallowed it whole.
I stop breathing: the stabbing sensation begins to crawl like an inchworm or a finger--a tiny needle in my throat scurrying toward my tongue. My cell phone has fallen a few yards ahead of me, nested on a lattice of dead grass gone stiff as hay. I hear the radio announcer coming from the wormhole of my phone and try not to think about the words.
--unconfirmed reports that a fourth plane, United flight 93, has struck the White House. President Bush was visiting a an elementary school outside the Washington DC area this morning and was not on White House grounds. Again: the President was not injured in the attack.
I look past my phone, the screen displaying old TV static, and the sight I see gets my breath starting up again, giving fresh energy to whatever the hell is in my throat.
First base. Maybe twenty or so feet in front of me.
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2019.07.17 14:28 JenniKinoShimatta Mens restroom hidden camera

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five
Part Six A
Part Six B
Part Six C
Part Six E
Part Six F (History Section)
Part Six F (Hunt Section)
Part Six G (History Section)
Part Six G (Hunt Section)
Part Six H
---
Sorry for the late update but the history section of this part got out of hand! And I got trapped in a network of records and articles in the newspaper morgue that took me down a lot of rabbit holes. Miss Angie also tipped me off to some things. Hopefully you guys will appreciate this extra-long update. I promise the next part will be up faster.
---
After a pleasant night and another deliciously greasy breakfast we returned to Frazier Lake via the toboggans and packed into the vans. Despite the disappointment at the Sanitarium we were in high spirits, even our nighttime expeditions back in Castleton weren’t truly overnight ghost hunts so this was a great opportunity. It took about 2 and 1/2 hours to drive around Frazier Lake from the eponymous town to Cold Spring. The trip started with tremendously picturesque scenery until about half-way around the lake, at which point we entered the farthest edge of Cold Spring. Miss Angie used to live in Cold Spring – or at least lived there for a time – and she warned me that the town had a bad feeling, no window-dressing or anything, she told me point-blank that if there were any truth to the rumors of places absorbing the emotions of its residents over time, Cold Spring was Exhibit A.
It was gray. As far as the eye could see it was gray buildings, gray land, even the lake shore looked drab and colorless. We drove for 30 minutes down Route 2, through the main drag of the town, and only saw a handful of people. It was dour but also somewhat exciting – I mean, what better place for a ghost hunt than a ghost town?
We’d taken 2 vans from Precipice Bay since we’d needed room for people and equipment. I was in van #1 with Ken, Jamie, Alice, Downie, Meg, and Terri; we had the computers, cameras, and night equipment. Van #2 had Steve, Kitty, Cecily, Jimmy, and Alex along with the ‘command post’ table, food/water, and camping gear.
We rolled up in front of the bar around noon and pretty much everyone got out to stretch their legs, use a bathroom, or smoke. Jimmy’s dad had connections in Cold Spring since he would sometimes do demolitions or minor construction for the town at cost so when Steve brought up the idea of visiting The Hole we already had an in. As it stood we weren’t supposed to meet the building supervisor until 1 so we had time to kill.
---
[⸰] Bar, Cold Spring
The Hole Bar squats between two taller storefronts on Lem Street just off Main in the center of Cold Spring. The sign doesn’t actually spell ‘hole’ but instead has a fat black circle on the marquee followed by ‘BAR’ in all caps. There’s a goodwill store on the left and the Lucky Dragon chinese restaurant on the right. The history of the bar is, like everything in Darabont County, complicated and a curious mix of facts and folklore. Thankfully, since this was a public business (unlike the secretive nature of the Esther Cavitt) there are a lot more records and let me just say…it isn’t anything good.
Here’s the overall business history of the location:

Okay, so the location has changed hands a lot but that isn’t really surprising considering Cold Spring is something of a ghost town and has been for as long as the town has existed. The town has constantly whiplashed from feast to famine and back again. It was one of the original 8 towns in the county, the furthest Southern town in the county and made a name for itself in logging and trapping. It sits on the opposite side of Frazier Lake and a derelict boardwalk/amusement area lies in stark contrast to the bustling water park of Frazier Lake town. The town was built on logging and prospered for about 50 years (the town was incorporated in 1792) then suffered when the industry moved North, boomed again when it was on the main road to the steel mills to the South, fell again around the Great Depression, rose during the post-war period, then fell again to its current state. The population of Cold Spring hovers around 300 and the average age is 56. It’s a dying town but there isn’t any other settlement nearby to absorb it so it sits, slowly rotting to nothingness.
Titticutt’s Saloon was a bar and card den with a history of violent drunken fights. During one of the town’s better periods the chaos sewn by the establishment proved too much and it was forcefully shut down in 1897 for “violence and a general air of venereal proclivities”.
Garand’s Game Room was a bar and brothel disguised as a card den cum lounge during the days of prohibition. Needless to say it was discovered and shut down after nearly making it to the end of the dry era. Miss Angie told stories of the extensive basement complex where Stuart Dowd, owner of Garand’s, made his own hootch – shunting fumes through the chimney of the laundry next door to disguise his bootlegging. According to local legend, the constables were keen to turn a blind eye to Dowd’s operations – especially given his supposedly exorbitant bribes – until his homebrew began poisoning the clientele.
Reynold’s Saloon and Sap’s Taphouse don’t really have any seedy stories attached to them, just the stink of failed businesses exacerbated by low points in the town’s history.
The Glory Whole was where everything started going to hell. Opened by an enterprising man named Colby Dufresne from Montreal, The Glory Whole was his reaction to Studio 54 and the club scene. Reasoning that Cold Spring was close enough to Montreal and Canada for party-goers yet distant enough to avoid a lot of the public criticism aimed at sex-positive/drug-positive clubs in New York and the like, Colby poured a tremendous amount of money into extensively renovating and updating the building, adding a third floor and extending the back of the building out into the municipal parking lot. Miss Angie remembers the club and even had a flyer from New Years 1979 – a garish metallic gold slip with a sloppily-printed logo and date. She said it was a wild place full of uninhibited souls untethered from the rigid constraints of civility. Coke, pot, heroin, and LSD were all over and the club was drowning in alcohol; my estimation of Miss Angie grew when she told me about the LSD parties they’d have in one of the private rooms and how her father had disowned her when she’d come back high as a kite from partying at the club. Of course with all the drugs and alcohol there was plenty of furtive, seedy, embarrassing sex.
Unlike some of the other times when Miss Angie would talk about ‘window-dressing’ and ‘bastardization’ of the facts surrounding a story, she confirmed that orgies would happen in the basement of the club and that a sub-basement did indeed have a fully outfitted S&M dungeon. Looking at the police records and archives of the Cold Spring Register it became clear that by 1981 – the year The Glory Whole was shut down – there had been 16 ODs, 47 arrests for public indecency, a raid that resulted in 21 arrested for drug use/possession, and 12 deaths due to ‘sexual misadventure’. The club was shut down in February of 1981 and Colby was run out of town following public accusations of pederasty.
The Bear Basket opened in September of 1981 under the ownership of John Steig. Hoping to capitalize on a repressed subset of the previous clientele, Steig reopened the business as a discreet gay sex shop. The front windows were blacked out, the front entrance was converted into a snaking corridor to prevent anyone from the street seeing the patrons, and it operated in a strictly word-of-mouth capacity. Like the Esther Cavitt, discretion was assured by the workers and the strangely named property quickly caught on in the closeted county.
Now unlike the previous watering holes that occupied the building, ‘The Basket’ was technically classified and registered as a ‘specialty’ store – in other words, a sex shop. The majority of the ‘storefront’ was high-end S&M gear, toys, etc. but it was the private rooms upstairs and the video booths in the back that really paid the bills. Miss Angie was a friendly patron of the store – she says that a lot of the merchandise on sale was unisex - and gave me all the salacious details.
Unknown to city hall (for good reason) and casually ignored by the single deputy stationed in Cold Spring, The Basket had an underground bar operating out of the back room and an upscale saloon upstairs for the more distinguished clients. The Club Room upstairs was also what ended Steig’s life as a free man. He was found guilty of manslaughter, procurement, kidnapping, and sex-trafficking and is currently serving several life sentences in federal prison. You see, he was ‘employing’ young men from around the county and as far afield as New York to work as entertainment for his more affluent customers. Miss Angie told me that the mayor of Cold Spring would occasionally pop in and drop 500 bucks for a few hours with a couple of young men. I suppose that all places have someplace you can go for some paid fun, it just so happened that Steig was plying his employees with heroin and, at one point towards the end, essentially kidnapped a boy from New Hampshire.
Anyway, the backroom had a series of video booths and you could get booze from the counter if you knew the code phrase (Miss Angie didn’t…she says she didn’t like the smell of the video booths…take from that what you will) and if you really were in the mood there were private playrooms in the basement. What Miss Angie didn’t know at the time was that the basement held a secret wall leading to even more extreme playrooms. Now she acknowledges that some pretty nasty stuff went down in The Basket but warns that most of the tales are bastardizations thought up by ‘stuck-up prudes’.
The end of Steig’s operations came on Wednesday, April 24, 1985 when a fire began in the video booths and quickly spread to the rest of the store. The fire raged for hours since Cold Spring at the time didn’t have any local fire station and engines needed to be sent from Frazier Lake. By the time the fire was extinguished the building’s top 2 floors had been totally obliterated and 7 people were dead. Steig was placed under arrest when the drug-addicted young men from upstairs had to be carried out by their clients – too high to even walk. 3 of the 7 victims were Steig’s boys from the Club Room, the other 4 being ‘upstanding citizens in the wrong place at the wrong time’ according to the Cold Spring Register. Miss Angie says that one of the victims was the comptroller for the Copper Mine (more on this later) and another was the town clerk for Frazier Lake. The next day was spent interrogating Steig while the Frazier Lake Fire Department tried to sift through the skeletal wreckage but as the region experienced three days of torrential rain and horrible flooding little headway was made.
It wasn’t until Monday, April 29 that the crews were able to go back to their investigation and made a grisly discovery. 6 men had been using the secret rooms in the basement when the fire broke out and were trapped when the video booths upstairs collapsed the floor. With the entire roof and most of the walls down the rain flooded the space, drowning anyone who hadn’t already asphyxiated from smoke inhalation.
With 13 dead, the mayor arrested, Steig facing serious jail time, and authorities from Canada and the US converging on the town you’d think Cold Spring would forever be tainted with the stigma of the ‘killer gay sex dungeon’ but I’m sorry to say the whole affair was forgotten in less than 5 years. Since Steig was an outsider (he was from Utica) and most of the dead were out of town workers the dirty business was quickly swallowed up by the collective malaise built up by Cold Springians.
Six years after the tragedy, the Cold Spring Beautification Committee decided that the condemned husk of a storefront had to go and through some creative financial wrangling, Perry Colchek (one of the executive chefs at the Silverlode at the time) was gifted the land by the town with a promise of wholesome reconstruction. Municipal records state that it was registered as a bar and grill only with no residential occupancy – meaning the resulting 1-story business would blend with the rest of the establishments on the street and not the sprawling monstrosity Colby Dufresne built. Building plans kept the basements since it would be far too costly to fill them in but eliminated the top two floors.
[⸰] Bar opened its doors on March 16, 1991, proving that the current generation’s hipstegentrification movement doesn’t own the concept of ridiculously asinine names. The grand opening had little fanfare and within six months the bar entered its death throes The Cold Spring Register glowingly reported the food ‘as delicious as any available in the county or beyond! The hand-formed burgers pair wonderfully with Chef Colchek’s homebrew lager and the ambiance of the restaurant is sure to draw admirers from all across the state.’ The Frazier Lake Crier was less enthusiastic, stating that ‘the food is good and the beer is cheap, locals would be hard pressed to find a better place to grab a burger and brew’. Needless to say it didn’t last a year, closing its doors permanently in February of 1992. With the town economy in the toilet and virtually no one living in the center of town the location’s been empty ever since.
---
Once the building supervisor arrived, an obsequious brown-noser named Jon Lerch, and the conditions of our ghost-hunt clearly understood (no fire, no booze, electricity and water were on, etc.) we started unloading the vans.
The bar was a large rectangle and consisted of a large open space in the middle with square tables and chairs, booths lining the right wall, and the bar on the left with restrooms and the kitchen at the back. A doorway between the bar and kitchen led downstairs to the basement. It was surprisingly clean for a restaurant closed 27 years ago, I’d assume that Lerch or his cronies cleaned it up after Ken made the arrangement. We moved all the middle tables against the booths and set up base camp before making a 200+ dollar order from Lucky Dragon.
Now there were several ghost stories surrounding the location and we’d made an itinerary to maximize the roughly 12 hours we’d be actively investigating. We weren’t being locked in, we weren’t going to end up like Grave Encounters, so some of the night was going to be spent where the Glory Whole’s disco floor used to be and was now a little park with an ivy trellis in the back parking lot.
The stories associated with The Hole fell into 4 categories: sounds, smells, sights, and direct action. It was that direct action bit that really made Ken excited. Supposedly, according to Steve this time, objects would move when you weren’t looking, bottles at the bar would mysteriously organize themselves, doors would open or shut, and boxes in the backroom (previously the video booths area of The Bear Basket) would topple down despite being carefully placed on sturdy shelves. People reported the sounds of people screaming for help, pounding in the walls, the heavy scent of burning, and ghostly people walking through the kitchen or basement.
So we divided into 4 teams of 3: Alice, Downie, and Ken were Group 1; Alex, Jamie, and I were Group 2; Steve, Jimmy, and Cecily were Group 3; and Meg, Terri, and Kitty were Group 4. 3 groups would investigate an area of the building while the last manned the control center. There wasn’t a time limit involved but if something began to happen in one place we’d converge and try to get the most coverage we could. Ken had the thermo-cam and we’d set up night vision cameras all over the place. If anything happened we’d know about it. And we kind of needed to catch something after the let-down at the sanitarium.
The food was done and delivered about 430 but we waited until Ken and Steve did a drink run to the nearest gas station – an overnight hunt doesn’t run without caffeine. It was around 5 when we all sat down and started eating. It was a fun meal and it was good that everyone got on so well with one another. I could tell Steve was getting flummoxed by all the attention from both Meg and Terri while Cecily and Kitty laughed at his predicament. Jamie, Alex, and I got along rather well considering we were the most soft-spoken of the group. By the time 6 rolled around we were loaded up and ready to roll!
We started off in the kitchen. It was a fairly large and well-outfitted kitchen in keeping with Perry Colchek’s history as a chef first and restaurateur second. We did some EVP in the main room then went into the walk-in. That was when things started going south.
We heard a rapping in the walls before we even got all the way through the swinging doors. It was insistent and seemed to be reverberating in the far wall, punctuated with a more forceful pounding like a sledgehammer. Alex and Jamie were looking suitably impressed that we’d gotten something worthwhile by 15 minutes into the hunt but that feeling quickly evaporated when I rested by ear against the cool metal wall.
People were shouting faintly in Cantonese and there was the inescapable hiss of frying oil. Lucky Dragon’s kitchen shared a wall with The Hole. No doubt we were just hearing them butchering a duck or chicken. It was a bad job all together and we returned to the command center after recording more EVP. I warned Kitty about the noise from the Lucky Dragon and group 4 shared a laugh. So far no one had seen anything serious. Group 1 was outside and group 3 was in the basement – all quiet with nothing on the night-vision either. Despite Lerch’s warning, Ken & Steve had brought beer and hard cider from the gas station, so we partook and grazed on the leftover Chinese food.
It was about 645-7 when the other two teams came back in with a whole lot of nothing. Group 1 needed to take over the command center since the thermo’s battery drained obscenely fast – a fact Ken hadn’t know until it crapped out in the middle of the parking lot – so we swapped around, my group ending up outside.
There was a municipal parking lot behind the row of storefronts, the area used for public parking not only for the front stretch of businesses but also a group of one-story shops opposite The Hole’s backdoor. There was a discount furniture store, a CVS, and a bowling alley that all had seen better days. It really made me wonder if the parking lot had been around when The Glory Whole was open since the disco floor had extended out double the length of the original storefront. It was definitely something to ask Miss Angie about (she later told me that there wasn’t a parking lot, just a dirt field). The play area was nice, covered in the mulch chips that really hurt when you land on them knees first, with a swing set, slide, and ivy-lined trellis. It was still light so the place didn’t have a spooky vibe. We didn’t feel anything but recorded EVP just in case. We ended up sitting on the swings while Alex told us some stories about Cold Spring (more on this later – Alex is very knowledgeable about the weird happenings around here).
Sometime later, Steve’s group came out and we swapped, returning to command first before heading downstairs. It was about 9 when we stepped into the basement.
It was clean, recently painted (or at least was before The Hole closed), and keg taps dangled sadly from the ceiling. The basement was the full length of the restaurant and made from thick stone blocks and bricks. At the far end, where the booths were upstairs, was a wide entryway that led under Lucky Dragon and further down: the hidden dungeon area. A row of fluorescent bulbs flickered dimly in the rough-hewn room and smaller doorways led to narrow tall closets with metal vents in the ceiling. There were four rooms and each was easily 8 feet tall, tapering up to the metal pipes. It wasn’t hard to imagine bootleggers brewing bathtub gin and moonshine in the claustrophobic stone cellar or to imagine randy men trapped in the tall cubicles choking on smoke and water. The place gave me the chills and not just because the stone room was cold.
Unlike the main basement there was significant water staining and damage on the walls. The floor was dirt underneath a thin layer of plywood and linoleum and small puddles of dark muddy water surrounded 2 sewer grates spaced equally along the floor. The room smelled of rot and earth and something sweeter I didn’t care to contemplate. I could tell that Jamie and Alex weren’t too thrilled about spending too much time there so we shined our flashlights in each cubicle, recorded about 10 minutes of EVP, snapped some chemical and digital photos then got the hell out of there.
We all got together and shared our findings before finishing off the food and drinks. The thermo was fully charged again and Ken suggested we go full dark with only our NV cameras. It was a good idea and we were committed to doing an overnight so we prepped, went to the bathroom or outside to smoke, then dove back in around midnight.
Group 1 was investigating the kitchen, 3 was outside, and 4 was in the basement while we manned the table. The NV cameras we’d set up in the basement were doing pretty good with a great view of the ‘hidden’ room and the main room at the bottom of the stairs. Despite not having much evidence we were still in good spirits – the night was still young and we hadn’t yet reached the witching hour.
It was around 1230 that I started seeing a fine fog creeping along the basement floor. Given that the day was hot and humid, the night more than a little cool, and our close proximity to the Lake it was not exactly unexpected. I radioed Meg, asking if they saw it too. Terri responded that they saw it and the mist was warm. It was slowly creeping up from the drainage grates in the hidden room.
It was around 1-ish when Alex grabbed my head and turned it to the monitor. It looked like Downie was pacing back and forth in front of the walk-in.
“So?” I responded while I pulled my head out of her grip. “He has restless legs.”
She pointed in front of the table and my eyes followed her finger to show group 1, Downie included, standing in front of the kitchen doors. My eyes darted back to the monitor and sure enough someone was certainly still pacing. I looked to the side when the door to the parking lot opened and group 3 walked in – we were all standing in the room yet there was a person in the kitchen.
Ken dashed into the kitchen with a crash. We saw him run around the service counter and straight through the man.
“Did you see him?” Ken called on the radio.
“He’s right in front of you,” someone shouted.
“There’s no one here,” Ken replied, “do you still see him on the monitor?”
The figure, dressed in light colored slacks and a dark t-shirt, stood stock-still just behind Ken on screen. “He’s right on top of you…”
On screen, Ken jumped up and spun around, waving the thermo cam every which way. The figure disappeared. I’m not saying it faded or ‘popped’ out of existence, it just disappeared as if it never was and the whole lot of us screamed when Ken blasted through the kitchen doors, white as a sheet.
He immediately rewound the thermo and we watched as the ambient warm hues of the kitchen swung around to a manlike shape of pure, purple cold before ending with the burning colors of our group gathered around the billowing heat of the command center. Ken and Steve whistled in appreciation before high-fives were exchanged. Real, verifiable evidence after only 7 hours! We were riding high now and we all reorganized ourselves with renewed vigor. My group returned to the basement.
The fog was halfway up our shins and that was just in the finished part of the basement. The unfinished part was about a foot further down from the finished concrete floor so our legs completely disappeared. Terri was right, it was warm, and moist enough to leave droplets on our clothes.
“…there’s people in there…” came Kitty’s lowered voice from the radio. The three of us stopped barely a foot into the hidden room, I was in mid step with my left foot hanging in the air.
“Where?” I asked.
“They’re standing in the doorways,” was the reply. I looked around but didn’t see anything on the NV. I looked at Alex and Jamie; both looked with their cameras and shook their heads. “Wait…they’re moving towards you now real slow…”
The hairs on the back of my neck stood up. Suddenly the fact that I was standing on one leg in the pitch dark with only the green glow of the camcorder to see overcame me. I could feel the blood in my arms and leg start thrumming and a faint pins-and-needles feeling began – the one you get when you’re on the verge of throwing up or passing out. My right leg was starting to tremble and burn but I didn’t want to dare put my other foot down in the fog The wet heat of it felt sweltering but I was shivering with a chill that started at the bottom of my spine and ran straight to the top of my head. It felt like my hair stood on end. I was losing the battle…
“There are six of them…they’re almost touching you…” Kitty’s whispered transmissions weren’t exactly helping the situation. I looked through the viewfinder and saw nothing but the fog and the darkness with the sheen of wet stone from the walls. The fog wasn’t moving around us so whatever she was seeing upstairs wasn’t making physical contact. The bottom of my stomach had fallen out long before but hearing they were so close was the last straw. I lifted the SLR camera around my neck and spammed the shutter, swinging the lens around the room. Taking that as the signal, Alex and Jamie jumped back into the basement and ran up the stairs. I was hot on their heels.
Once we were back, I saw the playback from the cameras. Six darkened silhouettes of people stepped out of the shadows of the cubicles as soon as we entered the rock cellar. There wasn’t any sound but I could see my arm swing the radio up when Kitty called. The shadow people converged slowly around, almost touching us, before the camera was blinded by the flash of my camera. The figures were gone when the lens recovered. Now the stationary cameras were NV so why did they pick up the figures and not the NV on our handhelds? Why did we see the man in the kitchen but Ken didn’t? The figure was clearly there in the thermo and we saw him on the monitor. Likewise, the shadow people were defined clearly in the basement but we didn’t catch anything, not even a swirl of fog…
The figures in the basement were clearly shadow people as well; the man in the kitchen looked normal – I mean, we mistook him for one of us at first – but the shadows downstairs had no features, just black definition.
At that point Ken and Steve went on another drink run, bringing back whisky and brandy. We didn’t go back down to the hidden basement room again that night and we turned on most of the lights. As soon as anyone set foot on the basement floor from the stairs the shadows appeared in the other room. If you stood there long enough, they would stand at the doorway between rooms but never entered the finished side. My photos showed a panicked mix of gray fog and shadow with nothing clear and certainly nothing human shaped.
Nothing happened for a long time after that. We were all frightened and excited and the booze didn’t help. It was just starting to get light out when Ken said he was going to go back down to the basement with the thermo. I don’t think anyone thought it was a good idea but Ken treated it like a walk in the park and I guess that kind of infectious, reckless bravado got to us.
No sooner had he stepped down onto the floor than the shadows people appeared from their alcoves.
“Are you seeing them? The thermo is showing them clear as day against the fog.” Ken’s voice was a little shaky.
“We see them,” Downie responded, “they’re moving to the doorway.”
Despite our cries of disbelief and alarm, Ken stepped towards the doorway. The shadows remained still.
“They don’t have any definition, just an outline, and they’re uniformly cold.” Ken stopped about 2 feet away from the cellar edge. “This is incredible! They’re absolutely invisible to the naked eye!”
Suddenly, a smaller, thinner, shadow sprouted from the middle of the basement floor barely a foot from Ken, pulling itself along the floor like Sadako from The Ring.
“Get out! There’s one behind you!” Someone screamed.
Ken spun around, looked down for a fraction of an instant and dashed through the apparition and up the stairs. After that we decided to start packing up and get the hell out of there as soon as Lerch arrived at 6. Around 5 the fog started receding, either back into the drainage grates or up the bootlegger chimneys.
We made sure the fog was gone before we retrieved the cameras in the basement rooms.
submitted by JenniKinoShimatta to nosleep [link] [comments]


2019.04.04 15:00 alleybetwixt Camera hidden mens restroom

BURNING MOLKA ARCHIVE WIKI will contain all future updates for this listing.
This post was last updated on 190915 at 6:55PM KST
This is a compiled list of all the significant figures involved in the Burning Molka scandals. It is our attempt to make an easier-to-read breakdown that focuses on the Who's Who of these cases and what they did.
⚠ TRIGGER WARNING: This will be the only warning in this post. The contents of many of these stories and notes may be triggering. If you are sensitive to straightforward mentions of criminal activity, especially regarding sexual assault/rape, do not continue. ⚠ There are two primary threads to follow in this story. One thread is Burning Sun and the general club culture of Gangnam. This includes illegal activities (drug use and dealing, gambling, entry of minors, sexual assault, illegal hidden cameras set up to film sexual abuse, tax evasion, embezzlement) and police colluding to cover up and/or participate in these activities. The other is the celebrity members of chatrooms sharing molka (illegally filmed videos, especially sexually exploitative in nature). They are intertwined as they involve some of the same people.
The ever-growing web of these stories are happening concurrently with a widespread spy-cam (molka) epidemic (hidden cameras in hotel rooms, public restrooms, etc) as well as a feminist movement (#MeToo) where awareness is being raised of the patriarchal culture of South Korea, which has facilitated sexual harassment and abuse of women as a 'norm'.
Throughout all cases, there are authority figures (police, politicians, celebrities, chaebols) committing crimes. Due to their wealth, power, and the entrenched corruption of those that could bring them justice--they get away with it.
(190503 Expansion) The two primary threads of Burning Sun and molka-sharing chatrooms have split into a few further threads through the investigations. As it stands now, there are essentially five threads.
CedarBough T. Saeji wrote an excellent piece introducing these threads and the ways they are connected within the larger cultural context of South Korea. Highly recommended reading!
KOREA EXPOSÉ - South Korea’s Corruption, Exposed by the Burning Sun
 
(see footnote in comments about all the Kims and repetitious names)
Directly involved: Victims speaking out: Indirect connections: Further investigations: People on the case: submitted by alleybetwixt to kpop [link] [comments]


2019.02.22 14:53 virgiltempleton Hidden camera mens restroom

"Yo Jimbo, I found one of your little spook things on the floor in the men's," Virgil thumbed a quarter-sized, nondescript silver disk through the air. Jimmy snatched it with one hand before it thumped him on his forehead. Then he immediately slammed it down on the work desk.
"Aw man. The bathroom floor? Did you wash it? Shoot...," Jimmy wiped his hand on the thigh of his khaki Dockers, then plucked a wet-wipe from a dispenser and had a vigorous rub.
"No I didn't wash it. What is it? Is there a camera in there? Do you have any in the women's restroom?" Virgil entered the Information Technology room and stood next to Jimmy. The work desk was an jumbled mess - computer parts, cables, disks, used coffee cups and wadded up food wrappers everywhere. A picture of Shia LaBeouf in a heart shaped frame sat off to the side. The silver disk rested on an almost clean area. Jimmy flipped his used wet-wipe away and tapped the disk.
"I have no idea what this is," he said. "It isn't mine."
"Don't bullshit me," Virgil said. "These things have been popping up all over the office. I know y'all are spying on us. Personally I could give a shit; but in the bathrooms? Creepy, Jimbo. Tres Creepy."
"I'm telling you, this isn't mine."
"It isn't yours?"
"I don't even know what this shit is," Jimmy held the disk between thumb and finger and turned it around. Smooth silver, maybe twice as thick as a quarter, with no visible marking or stenciling on the surface whatsoever. He held it to his ear and shook it back and forth.
"Okay, come on then," Virgil lead the way. They left the IT room and went towards the elevators. Virgil was tall and fat and Jimmy, even being a small man, had to walk slightly behind him as the hallway was rather narrow.
"Where are we going?" Jimmy asked when Virgil entered the lobby and pushed the button to call the elevator.
"Nowhere."
"Then what are we doing here?"
"I just want you to see something."
The elevator arrived with a ding and opened to an empty cab. Virgil placed a hand to stop the doors from closing then leaned in and pointed to another one of the disks, exactly the same, that had been affixed to the control panel. It was in the bottom corner, unobtrusive, where a person wouldn't normally look to notice. Jimmy scrapped his finger against its edge. It was stuck firm.
"Bizarre," Jimmy said. "Has this always been here?"
"No," Virgil answered. "Last week it just kind of showed up."
"How can you be sure?"
"Follow me, faithful companion." They left the lobby and went to the break-room. Virgil directed Jimmy's attention to the side of the refrigerator, top back, where there was another nondescript, unobtrusive disk.
"Whoa," Jimmy said.
"There's more."
The complete tour took them to the copy room, conference rooms, perimeter halls and cubicle farm. In each area, Virgil pointed out another disk attached to a vent, cabinet, or metal frame where it would be hard to notice.
Back in the IT room, Virgil explained, "I don't mind being spied on. They want to hear me pass gas or watch me pick my nose while I'm putting in my eight hours, fuck it, let them. But when I found that one on the floor of the men's...."
Jimmy had cleared off a section of the desk to give the mystery disk a respectable amount of space. It sat there, doing nothing.
"I don't see how it could be a camera or even a microphone," Jimmy considered. "Too small and there's nothing... to it." He tapped the surface with a screwdriver.
"Are you going to open it?" Virgil asked.
"How? There's no ridge or seam that I can see."
"Maybe it's hidden?"
"I still wouldn't know how, or if, it can be opened."
"Smash it with a hammer," Virgil suggested.
Jimmy thought for a moment, then said, "No, it probably belongs to the building. Maybe it's some sort of motion sensor to track how often areas are used?"
"You asking me?" Virgil replied. "I still think it's some sort of super spy pervvy camera. Well, whatever. I've nothing to be ashamed of; somebody wants to watch me hold it steady while I fill up a urinal, that's their problem. You going to be at McCarthy's tonight?"
"No. Can't tonight."
"Another thing with your wife again?"
"Yeah...."
"Bring her!"
"Yeah, no...."
"Come on man, you can't hide her forever." Virgil went to Jimmy's personal desk and picked up a framed photo: Jimmy and his new bride in their formal Indian wedding attire. Jimmy looking stunned; the bride looking scared. Pretty, but scared. "Eventually she's going to learn what a big mistake she made. I might as well be the one to tell her."
"After I fill her with babies," Jimmy replied.
Virgil nodded. "Then what can she do about it? Makes sense."
"Five thousand years of culture, we've learned a thing or two."
"Namaste." Virgil looked perfectly ridiculous as he bowed out of the room, hand's clasped in front of his huge belly, bent at the waist.
With Virgil gone, Jimmy paced the room; scanning every vent, cabinet, box, and desk for one of the disks. He ran his hands over the backs of the computer racks, feeling for anything out of the ordinary but found nothing. He rubbed his chin, shuffled around nervously, then dropped to his knees and looked underneath the office desks. Still nothing.
He stood over the disk. Tapped it with the screwdriver. Whistled low. Then, in a flurry of decisive action, grabbed his keys and unlocked the equipment cabinet. He went in for the toolbox and noticed it: another silver disk; affixed to the roof of the cabinet.
Jimmy reached up and touched it; cool, metal. Nothing out of the ordinary. He tried prying it loose with his fingers but it was good and stuck.
"...fuck this...," Jimmy muttered and grabbed the toolbox. He set it on the worktable, opened it, and took out a hammer.
***
"Oh fuck this," Jimmy reiterated ten minutes later. He'd been trying to hammer the disk open with no success, not even a scratch. He shuffled through the toolbox until he found an awl; placed the tip in the center of the disk, held it firm, then brought the hammer down hard.
The awl gave a fraction of an inch. The disk was penetrated.
Jimmy set the tools aside and studied his handiwork. The disk now had a pinprick sized hole in its center. He leaned down to have a closer look and a thin vein of grey smoke rose from the disk. It smelled like electricity; like lightning.
Jimmy fanned it away.
Tiny black bubbles emerged and hissed around the hole. They popped and spread out in a slimy ooze. Jimmy almost touched the disk with his finger, then thought better about that, and retrieved a screwdriver. With it, he poked the disk. It collapsed on itself; becoming two separate pieces. Still using the screwdriver; Jimmy separated the pieces.
There was nothing between them; only a thin glaze of black slime and the smell of ozone.
"Fuck," Jimmy concluded. And then he swept it all into the trashcan with a wet-wipe.
***
Jimmy sat in his car for a few moments after parking it in the garage. He'd told Virgil he would be busy with his wife tonight, and that was technically true, but in reality they were just going to sit around and watch TV before going to bed. Awkwardly going to bed.
They'd been married four weeks now and had yet to consummate the union. Yeah, I'd call that fucking awkward, wouldn't you?
It had been a quasi-arraigned marriage. Their names hadn't been written in ink - not even Indian ink - in a book when they'd been born, and his family hadn't received a cow for dowry from hers; but pressure had been applied, his advancing age had been relentlessly commented on, and pictures emailed back and forth so here he was - married to a stranger.
She seemed nice. Quite. Shy. And there was the problem - Jimmy himself was pretty shy, at least around women. He could crack up and make merry all day long with his homies, but with attractive members of the opposite sex? His mouth filled with grass and his hands became balloons. He was not, strictly speaking, a virgin, but his limited, generally humiliating sexual experiences hadn't exactly emboldened him with confidence.
So he would go inside the house, make small talk, agree on whatever program she was interested in, eat while watching TV, then, eventually, settle into the king-sized bed; her on one side, him on the other.
Maybe tonight, Jimmy caught his eyes in the rear-view mirror. Soft and brown. He narrowed them, trying to infuse steel into the irises. Tonight I'll ask her if she wants a back rub....
Jimmy quit the car and entered his house through the mudroom. It opened to the kitchen where he called out, "Hello? Sikta? I'm home."
From the opposite side of island counter-top, Jimmy noticed a puddle of reddish brown, viscous liquid seeping across the floor. He moved into the room and, advancing, saw a pair of small feet soaking in the pool.
"Sikta?" he said?
Behind him, the door slammed.
Jimmy jumped, turned, briefly saw the shape of a man lunging at him, and then everything went dark.
***
Sitka was dead. Throat cut ear to ear. Bled out like a slaughtered pig on the kitchen floor. The smell was nauseating.
Jimmy was strapped to the dining room table with bungee cords, unable to move. A dish rag crammed in his mouth to prevent any yelling. Still, he squirmed and whined and thrashed as best he could until fatigue overtook him. Then he lay there and cried.
After a few hours, a man entered the room and pulled the rag from Jimmy's mouth. Jimmy sputtered and the man said, "Quite. You scream you die."
The man sat at one of the dining room chairs. He was average looking, dirty brown hair, Caucasian, dressed in a polo shirt and denim jeans. The only striking thing about him was his eyes. They were icy, arctic blue. So blue they were almost inhuman. They locked on Jimmy and he suddenly felt as cold as if he'd been dropped into the bottom of the ocean.
"One question: why Shia LaBeouf?" the man asked.
Jimmy's mind went blank. He shook his head and sputtered.
"On your desk? At the office? Shia LaBeouf in the heart frame? What? Are you gay for Shia LaBeouf?"
"Nuh... no," Jimmy answered. "No, that's a joke."
The man sniffed and looked at Sitka's body. He shrugged.
"I don't get it," he said. "What's so funny about Shia LaBeouf in a heart frame? He's a terrible actor, you know."
"Who are you?" Jimmy asked. "What are you... doing?"
"I'm going to kill you. Soon. As soon as get this LaBeouf thing straight in my head. Why is it a joke?"
"Kill me? Did you kill...?"
"Her? Yes. 'though if you're gay for Shia, she's better off dead anyway. He's not an attractive man by anybody's standards."
"No... Why...?"
"You messed up today. The hammer? With the awl? That was a stupid mistake. So you have to die, if for no other reason than as an object lesson for anybody thinking of destroying our property."
The man tapped his chin and looked at the ceiling.
"Well," he continued, "we wouldn't be entirely incorrect to label it murder instead of destruction of property, would we? Anyway, you have to die. But first: what's with Shia LaBeouf?"
Jimmy thrashed and opened his mouth for a good scream but the man viciously slammed an elbow into his gut, knocking all Jimmy's air out in a great, weeping whoosh.
"This can go easy; it can go hard. Tell me why it's a joke? The LaBeouf photo?"
It took Jimmy a few moments to catch his breath. When he did, he said, "I was in Temple of Doom. As a kid. I was in that movie."
"Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom?" The man asked.
"Yes. At the end. When he brought all those Indian kids back to the village? I was one of those kids."
"Really?"
"Yes. I don't even really remember it now, but you can see me if you pause the right frame. My parents knew somebody who worked on the movie and they got me in that scene. I don't know why. I don't remember how. But...."
"Ah," the man stood up and paced the room. "I think I see now.... Growing up people must have teased you for being in that movie - because it was so bad."
"Yes," Jimmy agreed. Tears freely flowing from his eyes.
"Well," the man considered, "in all fairness, it isn't too bad a movie, but for the longest time it was the worse Indian Jones movie. Until that Crystal Skull abomination. Truly a bad movie by anybody's standards."
"Yes, yes...."
"So the picture of Shia LaBeouf in a heart frame is your appreciation for him... 'taking the heat' off you, as they say."
Jimmy nodded and sobbed.
"Hmm," the man considered. Then his lips curled up in a smile. "Yes. I see the humor."
The man took a razor from his pocket and used it to slice open Jimmy's neck.
submitted by virgiltempleton to shortstories [link] [comments]