Sunday, March 27, 2011

"The Package"

Jonathan was in his bedroom. The sun was shining in through the window, casting a shadow as the light hit the cardboard box on the floor in the center of the room. This box had just arrived in the mail; a label on it stated it was intended for him. No address. Just his full name, Jonathan Lauder.

He opened it up and found, inside, a pistol. Next to the pistol, he found a photograph. Under the photograph, there lay a videocassette. Throughout the box, there were many little 'bits' of something. The bottom of the box held a piece of paper, soaked with blood.

First, he read the note:

"Dear Jonathan Lauder,

You no longer have any reason to live. In the photograph provided, you will see Rhonda Lauder (maidenname DeFang) just before she died of asphyxiation. In the videocassette provided, you will see Michael Lauder as he dies of pneumonia. In the box, you will find what is left of Rhonda's stomach. This paper, you will find, is soaked with what is left of Michael's left eye. You will get to see them again."

He couldn't believe it. He grabbed the photograph and looked at it.

The photograph showed a naked woman in the local pond. The photographer seemed to have been watching from nearby. The woman, who Jonathan refused to accept was his wife, was quite deep underwater, and seemed to have her feet snagged in what looked like vines...or tentacles.

He took the videocassette to the nearest video player and watched it.

The videocassette was a still feed from nearby. The same pond. A little boy, naked, was screaming for help, complaining of the water being "really cold." The recorder of the video just breathed heavily and stood there, filming. Towards the end, the boy stopped screaming. The video was exactly three minutes long.

Jonathan didn't believe it was really his son. He couldn't.

He looked around. He had to do something. Call the police? Upon trying the door, he was shocked to find it was locked from the outside. He felt a shadow passing over him, from the window. The room went dark. He turned. Someone had moved something in front of the window. From the looks of it, something large and strong. Beginning to get a little desperate, Jonathan turned his light on and took a deep breath.

He thought things through. He looked through the box again, trying to ignore the little 'bits' that were supposedly from his wife's stomach. There was nothing else.

He scanned the letter over again. He discovered there is something written on the back, just noticable past all the blood:

"Pull the trigger and the nightmare stops."

Jonathan Lauder stands outside, in front of the local pond. It is the middle of the night. He is in a daze. Unconscious while still standing. A large splash is heard, the sound of something very large rising out of the water.

Jonathan put the letter down. He took the pistol in one hand and placed it to the side of his head. As tears came to his eyes, he slowly muttered, "Pull the trigger and the nightmare stops." Then he pulled the trigger...

In front of the pond, Jonathan suddenly wakes up. He's not in his bedroom anymore, it's not light outside anymore. His eyes then focus on the tentacle, as wide as an elephant and stretching still higher into the air, coming out of the pond in front of him. He does not even notice the mass of string-like tentacles coming out and grabbing his feet...

...and the nightmare starts.

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