The medicine cabinet was empty. This was the third time he’d checked it this hour. He was hoping that one of the times he rechecked it, he would find all his medications right back in their usual spots. Every time he rechecked it though, they were still gone. He was already having cold sweats, but now his hands were shaking; all the strength had quickly fled from his body when he realized what he was about to go through.
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Why’d you have to sell them? Why did you have to sell every single bottle of them when you know you need them?
He knew the answer immediately. Because he felt like keeping his legs, that’s why he paid the bookie off. Where else was he going to get the money anyway? His paycheck is barely covering rent and he’s scrounging for food. Todd MacIntyre could plainly see that he was struggling to keep afloat, and without his meds, he would soon flounder and drown.
He closed the medicine cabinet and stood looking into the mirror. Dark, purple circles hung under his eyes and his pale skin was glimmering with sweat. The fluorescent light over his head flickered. It was about to start and Todd knew it was coming; he could feel it coming.
He ran the sink and splashed some water on his face. Looking back up into the mirror, seeing the fear on his face, Todd was worried he wasn’t going to make it through the night.
What’re you so worried about? You’re a grown man; I think you can tell the difference between reality and illusion. Besides, how long has it been since you were without meds? 12-13 years? Who knows if you even have a problem anymore, you could be all cured up… He knew he was feeding himself a plate of bullshit, but it helped, nonetheless. He could handle this; he would just grab the bull by the horns. He had vanquished the fear from his face and now, he felt strong enough and brave enough to take this problem head-on.
The fear came flooding back into his face when the buzzing started. At first, it sounded like a swarm of bees, then, it sounded like the bees were multiplying and coming closer. Soon, it turned into a revving motorcycle engine. Todd wasn’t afraid of the noise; why would a grown man be afraid of a revving motorcycle or humming bees. No, Todd was afraid of what came after the sound. He remembered; the sound was only a precursor to the hell he was about to be put through.
It felt like the floodgates had been opened up. Now, the sweat was pouring out of him. He could feel his hooded sweatshirt building up with it. The motorcycles grew in number and they grew closer. The sound overwhelmed him; it crashed into his ears and overtook his mind. He dropped to the floor; the strength had left his body. His arms and legs felt empty and weak. His hands were shaking uncontrollably now. Todd couldn’t hear it or feel it, but his teeth were chattering.
Todd MacIntyre, collapsed on the cold, tiled floor, snapped himself out of the trance he was in. The noise had hypnotized him with fear and had frozen him. He shook off enough of the paralysis to move his head. The sound of the 20 motorcycles revving in between his ears kicked up a notch. Tiny fireworks began to explode off the white tiling and the white walls. They were tiny sparkles of bright pink and green. They, at first, randomly appeared, then disappeared off the wall. They began to stay after they exploded and dance around with the other fireworks. They would entwine together and then, quickly fade out. Todd had his mouth hanging open and was now hypnotized by the beautiful display, but more so by the fact that he was admiring the beauty of something that didn’t even exist.
The wall abruptly lit up as it exploded with fireworks all at once. They jumped out at him and then hung in the air, not entwining, but not fading either. They just hung there.
Then, the dizzying noise stopped. Todd was stunned and he felt like everything was moving in slow-motion. There was a dull clicking above his head. Todd looked up to see the fluorescent light faltering, just before it gave out.
The darkness rushed at him from the corners of the room and quickly enveloped him. Swallowed by the darkness, Todd reached a new level of fear. He was startled out of his catatonic state and began gasping for air like he’d just surfaced from an underwater dive. His pupils were focused outward and were dilated with fear from the new realization that, here in the dark, he couldn’t be completely sure he was alone.
The fluorescent light gave a low humming noise and flickered back on. Light exploded into the room and revealed a large figure standing in the doorway. Todd gasped at the familiar appearance and scrambled away from the door until he was pressed against the back wall. The fluorescent light tapered off but kept the room flooded with a dim light.
It stood just under the doorway (making it at least 7 feet tall) but it didn’t move. Although the dim light was still present, no detail of its body could be seen. It seemed to be a creature made up of the absence of light, but it was tangible as well. It didn’t have a head, or a neck, but it had eyes. The eyes were what frightened Todd the most. Todd’s eyes were locked with the creatures and he was hypnotized by it. There were two red glowing orbs that must have been its eyes located where a neck should be. It seemed to be a shadow, but Todd could feel that it wasn’t, he could feel the evil just emanating through the room with its presence.
Todd struggled to get air down his throat, but it seemed like he couldn’t get enough of it down. It seemed to resist going into his lungs, but still, he kept gasping. He was squirming against the wall, as if he could move back farther if he continued to push against the wall. He tried to scream for help, but he was so out of breath, the only report of his attempt to scream was a gurgling noise that rumbled out of his throat.
Todd didn’t have to see the rest of it to know what it looked like. He’d had enough dreams that he could draw a more than accurate picture of it. He was never really frightened by the wings of the creature; the ten-foot wingspan, the shadow-like appearance, the absence of a head didn’t frighten him. It always came back to the eyes. The eyes were the first thing he thought about when he woke up in the morning and the last when he went to sleep.
The light flickered out again, plunging him into darkness, and then rescuing him as it returned back on. The doorway was empty, but Todd knew better. With the creature, there always came coldness, and emptiness as well, that chilled him to the bone and didn’t leave until the creature did. The light flickered off and back on again, but when it came back on, it was dimmed out like it couldn’t operate at full power. The creature was back in the doorway. Todd began pushing against the wall harder, still gasping for air.
The seven-foot tall shadow began to emit a high screeching noise. It dizzied Todd as it crashed through his heads like a pack of wild bulls through the small streets of a Spanish town. He held his hands up to his ears and began thrusting at the wall behind him, but still to no avail. Todd’s vision began to ripple and shimmer like the surface of a pool. The screeching came to a halt and Todd immediately removed his hands from his ears and looked up at the creature.
“It began here…” The creature said. Todd found that the red eyes were no longer the feature that terrified him the most; it was now the voice that froze his blood. When it spoke, it was as if three different voices, in different octaves, all spoke at once, but each was a little off from the others. The result was a high pitched eerie chorus produced from one being.
Todd discovered he was no longer in the bathroom in his little apartment, but he was in the car…with his father.
I must be the only son to ever receive a posthumous visit with his father.
He found he wasn’t in control of his body, but he was only along for the ride. He could see out of his eyes, but he definitely could no move his body or use his voice. His eyes drifted down and Todd saw that he was no longer 33 years old, but he was in the body of his 8 year old self. As if beyond his control, he looked up to his father and smiled, and his father smiled back. Todd wanted to scream out and warn him of what was ahead, but he could not, with any amount of effort, take control of his body.
I’ve got to stop it; otherwise it’ll happen all over again. I HAVE to stop it.
Todd’s attempts at screaming were quickly dispelled as he saw one headlight appear through the dirty windshield. Leaves were lodged in the wiper-blades and they littered the two-lane road. The oncoming car began to accelerate quickly and began weaving back and forth across the double yellow line. Todd’s dad warned him to buckle his seatbelt and he sped up to get passed the man in the car with one headlight.
The only source of light was that one headlight as it grew closer and closer, weaving back and forth across the road. Todd began to get scared, and he followed his father’s orders and buckled his seatbelt, never removing his eyes from that one headlight. There were no other lights in the rear view mirror or up ahead, not on this deserted road. Both of the cars were still accelerating when it happened. The man with one headlight had veered over again, but this time, he couldn’t get back over in time. Whether it was slow reflexes, distractions, or loss of traction on the leaves, that night Todd MacIntyre’s life changed forever.
The man with one headlight crashed the side with no headlight straight into the left headlight of Todd’s car. The impact brought Todd out of his seat, but the seatbelt caught him. His neck snapped forward and his head connected with the dashboard in front of him. He was instantly knocked unconscious.
Here, the memory is only in a few pieces. He regained consciousness and the first thing he thought about was how warm his head was. He felt dizzy, light-headed, numbness and an extreme amount of warmth on his head and in his ear. He was leaning over his seatbelt and when he opened his eyes, he saw his father crumpled underneath the steering wheel in a position that left no doubt in Todd’s mind that his father was dead. The last thought in Todd’s head was that this was the last time he would ever see his father again without having to look in a coffin or through 6 feet of dirt and grass. His vision slowly faded out to black.
His vision returned and the first thing he saw was a pair of arms reaching in towards him. They felt around and found his neck and he noticed that he could barely feel the hands on his neck. The hands stayed there for a while, and then slowly retreated back out the window to the owner. Todd, then, saw the seven-foot shadow, wingspan fully outstretched, walk in front of the one functional headlight. As soon as it stepped into the light, two large red eyes reported back from where its neck should’ve been. It walked very slowly, staring at Todd the entire time, and then disappeared out of his view.
The owner of the hands was pulling at Todd’s door until he finally got it open. He looked down at Todd through thick glasses, looked hesitantly into his eyes, and then closed Todd’s eyes with his fingers. Todd felt his seatbelt unbuckle and felt the man with the hands catch his body before it fell out of the car. The pain pricked at the back of his mind, but he was still numb. Todd felt skull cracking, teeth shattering pain as the man dragged him across the deserted road and into the underbrush on the side of the road. He tried to say something to the man, to tell him the excruciating pain he was going through and that he needed a doctor badly, but his throat only gargled in response. He pulled Todd into the underbrush and laid him down.
“Just let go…” he said to the boy as he knelt over him.
He looked down at his hands and wiped the blood off on his jeans. He stood up, brushed a strand of greasy hair out of his field of vision, and headed back to the car. Todd lay there; still unaware of what was happening. Todd watched the man cross in front of the one working headlight and over to the drivers side door. He then watched the man hoist his father out of the car and proceed to drag him over to where Todd was laying. The way his father fell limply against the man’s arms, especially the way his head hung loosely off his shoulders, were obvious signs that he had passed on during the accident. The man dragged his father through the underbrush, and laid him in front of Todd, so the two were face to face.
Todd just stared into his father’s open eyes as the man climbed into their car and drove it off the side of the road and into some underbrush. Todd was looking into his father’s face, hoping for some miracle to bring him back. A tear rolled down Todd’s face as the man killed the headlights and the engine, threw the keys away, and ran towards his car. He hopped in, peeled out, and Todd never saw that man again.
Amazing how one asshole can change my life forever and I never have the “pleasure” of even meeting him or congratulating him for stealing my father away from me, stealing my life from me, and putting me through the most intense torture I’ve ever endured. Before the car was completely out of view, Todd’s memory was forced to recall the creature as a shadow began to walk out of the underbrush across the abandoned road, red eyes glowing in the moonlight. The creature slowly made its way toward him.
Suddenly, Todd was back in his bathroom, scrambling against a wall to avoid the creature that had been there when it all started. It had been there in the beginning, it was there through the years of physical therapy, it was there through the mental therapy, it was there through the discovery of his schizophrenia, and it was here now.
“It ends here…” The creature began to expand slowly across the doorway, blocking out all light from outside the room. A sharp, screech burst through Todd’s head just before the creature flew toward him and enveloped him in the darkness. The last thing Todd MacIntyre witnessed on this plane of existence was the two red eyes of the “Mothman”.