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He's In There With You

May 21, 2021

Word Count: 516
Genre: Horror; Suspense

"Hello? I hope I have the right voicemail. Listen! He goes into your apartment when you're not home."

Her voice was gravelly, muffled almost, as if her mouth was pushed up against the receiver, like she didn't want anyone to hear her besides you.

"I needed you to know. Call me back!"

There was an urgency in her voice now, a richness there of authenticity, and then a deep gasp before the line disconnected.

You pull the phone away from your ear quizzically and look down at the unknown number and then up at your front door, the one you were about to unlock.

"How can I call you back if it's blocked?" you say, rolling your eyes at the phone. "What a joke."

But an eerie feeling envelops you as you open the door for the first time that afternoon. You look around, expecting something to be different. While nothing appears to be out of place, you can’t shake the feeling that something is. You go about your normal routine after work, but something in you forces you to open up a bathroom cabinet you haven’t opened in six months. After your shower, you go into the guest room just to check the closet.

You can’t get her voice out of your head either. The tone, the urgency. She needed to tell you that someone goes into your apartment. And now that you know, what else could you do with that information but dwell on it?

For the rest of the evening, your mind spirals in any idle moment; a reloading screen while gaming pops up and you think you see a figure pop up behind you, you instantly whip around, but nothing is there. While making ramen, the floorboards creak in the living room, and when you look up there’s a hint of a shadow in the reflection on the microwave, again, you twist around to see, but there’s nothing there.

Brushing your teeth before bed, you go around and double check all the locks, the chain on the door, the slider to the balcony, close all the curtains, and turn off all the lights. When you’re done spitting, gargling, and setting your toothbrush aside, you have that feeling of something watching you - goosebumps raise up on your forearms, the hair on the back of your neck stands up, but you shake it off and go to bed, closing the door behind you for good measure. 

Before turning out the light, you double check your closet, close the door, and lay down for the night.

Your phone rings, jolting you out of a fitful sleep at -- looking at the alarm clock on your nightstand -- 2:00AM.

“Hello?” it was her. “Hello? Can you hear me?” Her voice was just as rough as the voicemail. You thought maybe the recording had made it worse, but no, her live speaking voice was just as scary. “He’s in there with you. He never left. You need to get out of there.” Before you can ask any questions, the line disconnects again.

Again, your mind starts to spiral.

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