Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Empty House

We have received two important emails.

One is from our old friend Sammy. He claims to be speaking to us on behalf of a higher power.

"I do not want to worry you, R*****. Your family is in a peaceful place. They are in the paradise that the Red King has created within and around himself. They will be set free when the time is right. All we be set as we see it should be.

However, the Red King first wants me to tell you something about his past."

The message then proceeds into an anecdote supposedly written by the "Red King":

"When I was a child, there was a house across the street that had quite a bit of local lore attached to it. It had remained vacant until I was just a toddler. Around the time I turned four or five, it was supposedly bought up by a family no one ever has ever remembered seeing. Sometimes a van would come late at night or early in the morning, but that was all anybody could see. Plants were installed strategically around windows.

The local kids believed the inhabitants to be cannibals or goblins. Adults believed the house to be owned but uninhabited by those fixer-up types or some such. I wasn't sure about any of that, but I did find myself fascinated by the house and its mysterious owners for some reason. When I was eleven, I worked up the courage to try and sneak inside one day. While I was supposed to be camping out in a friend's backyard, I snuck to the house and hid between two large bushes. Sometime after one in the morning, the van pulled in. A man in a suit carrying a briefcase and folder got out. As he neared the house, I slowly crept around so that I would be directly behind him as he opened the front door. I had a plan to explain my presence if (more of a when, thinking back) he caught me.

I was successful.

I only caught a glance of the inside, but that was more than enough. Most of what was visible to me was unfurnished, but in one back corner there was an absolutely massive piece of machinery. I could only stutter. The man slowly turned around and looked at me. He furrowed his brow like a frustrated father and spoke very sternly.

"Get out of here, Terry."

I had never met the man in my life.

I tell you this story to remind you that sometimes an answered question only leads to an even larger number of questions and doubts. The question of what inhabited a creepy house on my street soon led me on an odyssey that still has me questioning certain aspects of my reality and purpose in existence. What should have been a straightforward venture into an empty or goblin-filled house (depending on whether you asked adults or children) became something that has taken me down many strange and horrible paths in life.

Do not assume that things are as simple as black and white. Do not assume that I am some villain simply because you choose to see me as that. Be prepared to accept all possibilities. Prepare to accept me.

I am only trying to help."

I have experienced no hallucinations today, and R.F. has continued his sleeping for the most part. I hope things will get better for him soon.

I will now be answering recent and still relevant questions.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


I went looking for my family. They were not there. He is taking it all away. He believes that they will act as restraints at this stage. They forced him to this. He acts out of vengeance though - not goodwill. I must remember this as my mind tears itself apart. I will not remember many things come tomorrow. The sleeping has already erased some details.

I went to the bedrooms to look for them. They were not there. I was growing upset. In the last bedroom on the first floor, I was turning around to leave. The blue boy stood in the doorway. I asked him if he was a dream, but he told me he was here because this was where I'd come for my family. He held out his hand, and I took it. He pulled me down a dark hallway. He told me that he was a prisoner in the darkness and that a terrible man kept many people such as himself prisoner. He kept them close to him. The boy told me that he was close by. I asked him who this person was, and he told me that they were a King.

He asked me if I remembered him. I did not.

I was being led into a large room. Streaks of darkness hung off the walls like morbid banners. Something was in front of us. The invisible thing.

"They made a deal with my family."

A quiet voice resonated throughout the room.

"I was to only be observed. If I did not do the things I could do, they would leave me be. I followed their rules."

A slight bit of coldness enters its speech.

"When a friend went missing, I knew where he went. I wanted them to do something. I went directly to them. They denied me. They knew it would look suspicious under certain eyes - the knowledge. They let him die."

The voice suddenly sounded disgusted.

"They let an innocent be raped, tortured, and killed for the sake of my secret. I stayed silent. In the end, they betrayed me anyway. They've betrayed all of us. We must evolve. We must balance things out. Somebody has to do something."

The voice was almost pleading.

The dark banners dissolved. I could suddenly see the room clearly. It was a large, empty bedroom. In front of me was what I knew to be a closet door. Its doorknob moved. Knocks banged harshly from the inside. I knew at once it was malevolent. I ran. I did not dare look behind me, though I could sense and half-hear something following me. The house had somehow grown huge. It was like a maze. My mind felt as if it was breaking in half. It feels like I must've run for hours. I finally came upon a room I recognized: the living room.

Suddenly feeling comfortable enough to catch my breath, I realized I was not alone. On the couch sat this horrible... thing.

A small, oily figure sat idly on the couch. Its features seemed singed and melted. It turned its lopsided head towards me. It had two marble-shaped, beady, black eyes. Its mouth was twisted downwards. It had the nose of a skull. Its skin was a wet black and burnt. A few greasy strands of hair lay on its head. Oil dripped off of it like sweat. It had no arms or legs.

It simply looked at me.

We stared each other down for what was a very, very long time. Around dawn, it started to shift between what was its current form and a much more human figure. It seemed to be becoming Greg. Snapping out of our staring contest, I ran to a nearby room to find some sort of weapon. The closest thing I found was a hammer. When it had completely become Greg, it awoke. I thought it was trying to steal his form or something. I thought he was dangerous. In one of my worst states of mind, I attacked.

Greg disarmed me and explained as best as he could. I decided to accept the explanation.

I have done the best I can to try to find my family. I know not what else to do. I will wait for whatever happens next. I am very tired, and somehow I know I will be forgetting things. Even as I write this, I fail to understand what I meant by some of the things I wrote in the first couple of paragraphs. Of course, I have slept after sitting down to write this at least once. Who knows what more sleep will bring?

I will let Greg answer the questions.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Blue Prison

I know you all may be tired of hearing from me, but R.F. has had some rough times and is having a troubled sleep right now. We're back at his home.

The drive there was surprisingly uneventful. At a gas station between our current place and the destination, I spotted a man who seemed to be watching me as he filled up his car. It was a faded green muscle car, much like the one R.F. spoke to you all about in his Sky Pilot post. Nevertheless, after paying for the gas, he left without incident. There were also a couple of times where I felt we were being followed by another car on the road, but it set off on a different road more than an hour before we reached R.F.'s family's temporary home.

We reached the home more than just a couple of hours before dawn. A van was parked out front, but there were no other vehicles. Examining it, I noted nothing of interest inside. I assumed it belonged to someone in R.F.'s family. He glanced at it but didn't seem to think it out of place. There wasn't a single light on in the house, which made sense considering the time. Walking up the front porch, I could've swore I heard the faint sound of the door's lock clicking. R.F. was very nervous and didn't seem to notice it. He managed to knock on the door in a way that sounded both loud and cordial. No answer. Again. No answer.

"They're probably sleeping upstairs." His voice was quiet and hopeful.

The house was, excluding the attic and basement, two stories tall. It was also very large and seemed even farther out in the country than even R.F.'s real home.

I decided it was best not to wait out there for God knows how long. I assumed the door would be locked but figured the straight approach would be at least worth a try. It was. The door opened for me immediately. The house was well-furnished, but not a single thing in the house was turned on. Walking in, I instinctively flicked on a ceiling light right inside. R.F. simply followed quietly. The fan built up speed overhead, muffling out the silence that we had been confronted with when first walking in. There was an eerie vibe to the place, but I also felt extremely comfortable there. It's very hard to explain when thinking back. I knew there was something wrong about the place, but it also felt very familiar and safe to me on a personal level. I felt like I was back home.

To our left was a large den with a television, couch, loveseat, chair, and personal computer. On the right was a hallway that seemed to lead to a bathroom and some first floor bedrooms. In front of us was a staircase that led to the second floor. R.F. told me that a dining room and kitchen could be found going through the den and asked me what we should investigate first. Naturally, I told him it'd be best if he checked out all the bedrooms.

As he headed off towards the bedrooms, I just sort of stood around awkwardly. I didn't really know what to do. I had just started to head off to check up on him when I heard a sound slowly overpowering the ceiling fan. Sound from what appeared to be a loud music box was drifting downstairs. Against my better judgment, I decided to follow it.

The second story was an absolutely confusing mess. There was no pattern to any rooms or hallways. Everything was just sporadically placed about. I had no clue where to go. Even the noise of the music box seemed to come from no place in particular. I wandered down a hallway that seemed to be lined by bedrooms. I was about to open the first one I saw, but something made me stop: voices. Familiar voices.

"You'll never guess where they're sending them."


"Oh, you heard."

"Rosalez. The man's a hackjob and a crackpot."

"It's a fantastic combination when you think about it."

"They'd be better just letting that glorified masseuse handle them. At least he is dependent on us. At least we can trust him."

"Ha. Wallace said he found Tyler rifling through med supplies. Thinks he was looking for drugs or something."

"Strange little man. His wife works here, yes?"

"It's his ex."

"Oh, yes. She is the one who had the miscarriage."

"Eh... one of them, I think."

"Pfft. In the camps, I was an apprentice to some of the greatest minds in Europe. I was considered a prodigy. Even the states turned a blind eye to my history afterwards. Gave me a new identity and a new life. Where do I end up? Working alongside drug addicts and butchers. It is deplorable."

"I think we're in over our heads. Aside from all the scumbags on staff and the shoddy security, if this man can do what they say he can-"

"Perhaps I am just too old to be working with people of dignity anymore. Oh... continue, Tony."

"Well, wouldn't that make him practically a god?"

"Bah! We had twins just like that. I can tell you, it was hard keeping them lucid and under control. There were even rumors that there were more of them. They're so good at hiding, these little buggers."

The conversation seemed to have ended, and I was about to walk into the room. The younger voice speaks again.

"Being serious here for a second, what should I do if I suspect a coworker of being severely unstable?"

"I am supposing this is about Mr. Tyler."

"Uh, yeah. I found him in one of my labs. I was about to shoo him out as usual, but I noticed he was crying and holding something."


"It was one of the lab mice we'd been running those neuro-circuitry tests on. It was dead, and he kept calling it his 'baby'."

"Oh boy. What did you say to that?"

"I just took the mouse from him and told him to get out. He was very... irate. Told me to give him his baby back."

"Now you want to tell someone."

"I'm... not sure."

"You would have to speak to Helena."

"I know. Why do you think I'm so hesitant?"

Their laughter fades. I open the door. No one's inside.

Familiar voices. I couldn't place names.

Examining the room, I found no evidence of recent living or any source of sound.

Stumbling out into the hallway, I continued to walk around, afraid that I had just begun to have a hallucination attack at one of the worst of all places and times. Spotting a twitching of movement at the end of the hallway, I made one of the few smart decisions I've made recently: I retreated. It followed, its form "jumping" sporadically from one side of the hallway to the other. Practically falling down the stairs, I went in search of R.F.

I was pretty much just randomly running/jogging around in search of him when I noticed that everything seemed to be dimming. Up ahead of me there was a short flash of blue movement. I was starting to panic. Tripping, I found myself laying flat on my face next to a table. A cat. Some blue cat had tripped me. Somewhere, I heard what sounded like a little girl speaking. She was frightened.

"He's back."

After this, it sounded like three infants had started to cry. I felt all the air in my surrounding area tighten. I simply laid still. I did not feel like running or fighting anymore. I was just so tired.

The darkness seemed to have crept up above me. I could feel it staring at the back of my head as I lay on the ground and simply wished everything to just stop.

"Everyone has this potential. When I am done, you will see that men need not Gods or Kings. They need only themselves."

Such an indescribably calm and gentle voice. I felt very cold.

"I have to force the cure."

I was being picked up and blinded. Nothingness. I was starting to see again. Nothingness. Something near me smiled like a mother. Nothingness. Parts of me began to fall off. My arms, my legs, my head... my body just slipped off of some core part. I was molting. I was being reborn. The darkness dripped off of me like water. Something inside of me was screaming as parts of it fell off. A larger figure inside me smiled at it mockingly.

I've never been happier.

I awoke on a couch in the living room. It was daylight. I began to get up. R.F. lunged at me with a claw hammer. I was able to get it away from him before any serious damage was done, though I have had two fingers broken. I restrained him and explained that I was on his side. Hesitantly, he briefly explained his actions.

"You were one of them when you were asleep."

He will tell most of his story soon enough, but I'll get the stuff you want most told now. No, we did not find any trace of his wife or family. He claims to have called the police. I know he is lying. I cannot say anything to him. I share his fear for some reason. He has been sleeping most of the time since we returned to his home, but he has gotten up for a few moments every now and then to randomly pace around. He tells me that he doesn't know what to do at this point. I do not think he feels comfortable with me any longer.

I found a note of his. I do not think he has any problems with me posting it. I think that was its purpose. It's rather simple.


I'm not sure whether he's looking too much into it or not anymore. I'm not sure of anything.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

We are leaving.

Having discussed it further, gathered up all necessary equipment, and (this is the hardest part, in my opinion) mapped out a route that will hopefully keep us somewhat close to civilization, we are headed out to check in on RF's family.

We still have some questions to answer, but that'll be it.

We should be back some time late tomorrow evening, if all goes well.

Decisions, decisions

R.F. and I are currently debating whether or not it would be wise to go check up on his family. They were supposed to call yesterday, but they never did. He has already called her cell phone and his old daughter's, but neither responded back. Perhaps they are angry at, and perhaps it's something worse.

I do not doubt that they need to be helped if help is needed, but I do wonder if we could even make it. It's a long drive, and if we head out now, we'll definitely be driving through the night. He wants to get there as soon as possible. He told me not to worry and to stay here while he left. I know that if he goes there and something is waiting for him, he'll have no chance alone; at least, not if it wants him out of the way or gone.

I think I will give in soon. Even though all my kids are grown and independent, I can understand how afraid he feels for them. Still, I think it'd be best if we left in the morning. Night seems to be when the aural hallucinations slowly drop away, and all the most powerful visual hallucinations come out. If we get into a wreck or something because of something like that, nobody would be around to help anybody.

Oh well.

We will make one short post before we leave tonight (if we do leave tonight) and answer the couple of questions or so asked in our previous absence.

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Motel

Like R.F., I had an absolutely loverly night.

I stayed at a motel out in what was pretty much the middle of nowhere, and I felt pretty unwelcome the moment I stepped into the place. A large group of maybe a little under twenty people was gathered in the lobby. Looking at them, I found they all vaguely resembled one another; they looked to be brothers and sisters, perhaps. The tallest one, a pale man with sunglasses, turned to the beautiful, blonde woman beside him and whispered something in her ear. Had they noticed how uncomfortable and out of place I was?

The man running the desk was a squirrelly-looking fellow. We made small talk for a few minutes, and he seemed very excited that "business was picking up" and that his motel had "no place to go but up". It was an utter dump.

I managed to get what seemed to be the biggest room in the place and was settled in fairly early. I would be heading out east in the morning, and I needed sleep. I seemed to be suffering a bout of insomnia, though. I was still wide awake past midnight, watching COPS or some similar show on television. Just as I thought I might be drifting off to sleep, I heard what sounded like something falling into the bathroom sink. Liquid. The sink may have just broken somehow.

I got up to investigate. Walking into the bathroom, I notice that the sink is full of that black muck R.F. keeps referencing. I'm staring at it, not sure what to do, when I notice there's another person in the mirror in front of me: it's gray man, the Twitcher. His face is emotionless, but his bright green eyes seem to be boring a hole into my head. I quickly turn around. No one is behind me. I look back into the mirror, and his reflection remains. I stare at him, not knowing what to do. Suddenly, it happens.

He reaches his hand out of the mirror, grabs a hold of the front of my hair, and pulls me face-first into the mirror in what seemed like just a second. It shatters violently. As I looked into the shattering glass through the blood pouring out of my forehead, I saw him "twitch" out of sight. Stumbling out of the bathroom and eventually the entire room, I wandered into the lobby and fell to the floor. Squirrelly Guy had been napping at his desk but was awakened by my abrupt and dramatic entrance.

He rushes to my side and asks what's wrong. I'm about to explain that I've just had the front of my head cut open when I realize I'm no longer bleeding. In fact, there's no sign of any such injury on me. I tell him that there's been a personal emergency and that I should leave quickly.

I quickly grab what few things I have from my room and get out of there.

I'm driving along, not sure if I'm even going to bother to try and find another place to sleep at this point, when another fun little incident occurs. I realized that something was following me. Something in the woods on the side of the road, something large and dark, was running alongside me. I just couldn't see it.

Admittedly, I went a little faster than I probably should have. I just wanted to keep driving, but I eventually was too tired. I found a larger, franchise hotel and stayed there with no incident.

R.F. called me in the morning, and I decided it'd be best if the both of us were in the same place so that any unpleasant experiences we had could be compared or examined/viewed by the other.

I have spent most of the time observing the surrounding area and the now completely empty squatter's shack. We only use his study for using the computer, as the freshly black carpet in there that we can both see indicates to us that the room is somehow "tainted", as silly as that may sound. We're both waiting for something.

Well, I'm waiting for something not to happen, more or less.

Sky pilot.

Greg is staying with me in case they come back.

I was, for lack of a better phrase, under attack throughout most of yesterday. I had just got off the phone with the project director of my current employment, when I felt a strange pulse in the air. It was like existence had just slightly compressed for a moment and had popped right back. I became very tired and sat in a chair in my study. After a few seconds, I realized I was not able to move. This has become a very bad sign for obvious reasons.

Trying not to panic, I did the only thing I could do: wait for whatever was going to happen to happen. It felt (and probably was) like about half an hour before I noticed something. It had grown very dark outside. In fact, it was pitch black. Minutes later, I heard knocking coming from the study windows. I looked again, and hundreds of disembodied hands were clawing at, rubbing, and knocking at my windows. The noise was absolutely terrifying. I heard a deep thump come from below me. Another thud echoed below me, but it was closer this time. This time, I could swear it was a loud beat of a heart - and it started beating regularly. Second after second, heartbeats would resonate throughout my home. The room seemed to be breathing.

My study door opened, and a large black stain spread across the carpet slowly. Entering along with this stain was a huge, dark, and invisible being. I couldn't see it, but I could feel it. It was staring right at me.

"The others will be returning."

It spoke gently. There was no reason to be loud - it had my complete attention.

"This is so unnecessary. I have only one question to ask you."

It knew I couldn't answer, but it had asked anyway.


I wanted to break down and sob. I wanted to tell it that I didn't know why. I wanted to tell it that I couldn't answer questions that I didn't know the answers to. I wanted to do something.

"You are already lost."

It sounded sad.

A familiar voice filled the air.

"Two broken ribs, a wrist with a ring fracture, a concussion, some bruising, and a few nasty lacerations."

"It's a miracle he survived," replied a woman whose voice I had never heard before.

"I wouldn't say that," the familiar voice solemnly replied.

I had a vision of bright lights overhead.

"Well, clean him up, and send him to Rosalez in prep."

The lady's voice was the last thing I heard before I remembered where I actually was.

All of a sudden, I realized I could move again. Naturally, I took off. The thing's eyes - whatever or wherever they were - slowly followed me. Glancing at my watch instinctively, as I exited the house, I realized I had been stuck in place for hours.

I ran to the woods. I needed to get somewhere, and my instincts were the only proper guide I felt I had. Clouds overhead took the shape of eyes and followed my running figure. That strange wailing noise echoed across the countryside. My legs began to wobble, and I found myself near the road. I had to find someone else. I couldn't be alone anymore. After waiting a few moments, a faded green Camaro slowed down and came to a stop near me. The driver waved me in.

The following is a conversation between me and the driver. For most of the ride, the song Sky Pilot was blaring, but I was able to hear him pretty well.

Driver: You alright, man?

I'm silent.

Driver: Was there- was there an accident or something?

Me: I'm uh, lost.

Driver: That can happen out here.

He starts to drive off.

Driver: Well, where were you intending to go?

Me: ******.

Driver: Whew, that's my way. No offense, but I wasn't looking forward to driving you all the way out to ****** or anything.

We're quiet for a few moments.

Driver: Yeah, I've had a couple of bad days this week myself, and, to top it all off, I was fired tonight.

Me: I'm sorry to hear that.

Driver: Yeah... Eh, what're you going to do?

Me: Hmm.

Driver: I'm just heading out to visit friends for a while. I had to get out of that goddamn city.

Me: It's good to get away sometimes.

Driver: Yup.

Quiet again.

Driver: I've never liked cities. You don't feel like a person there. It's like - and tell me if you don't get this - it's like you're a cell in a human body. You're just a tiny, insignificant little part of some bigger animal. You're practically worthless. You could die one day, and everyone that needed you could just replace you. Friends in smaller places, though - they can't so easily lose you. I believe it's best to be around people who actually need you and not just as some position-filler, y'know?

Me: Right.

Driver: We all have our place. Mine's just not in a city.

Me: It... it is important to find a purpose in life and fill it.

Driver: Right. Though, sometimes I don't think it really matters. I mean, we're just the characters, right?

Me: I'm not sure I follow you.

Driver: Oh, come on. You seem bright. Don't be so coy.

Me: I-

Driver: When you're only one of the things in his dream, you know very well you're not real.

I realize we have been driving around aimlessly. We're still surrounded by woods on both side of the roads. I have seen no other cars. He's staring at me while driving.

He fades away. The car follows him. I'm being carried through the air. I'm tired again. My eyes close. Soon, I feel wet. I'm drowning in something thick. I think I'm dying.

A little boy speaks to me from above, but I cannot see him.

"Where are you going?"

I bubble the first response that comes to mind.

"To Sleep."

I woke up in a cold bathtub this morning. The first thing I did was call Greg. He told me he had a similarly distressing night. He is busy examining the woods and the squatter shack right now. I will be back to answer comments after I receive the daily phone call from my wife.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Short post.

I was moping around my house today when I noticed that all of the light in my house was dimming. I felt a horrible stinging sensation in my heart, and my body became paralyzed. My eyesight kept shifting, but I could see this strange figure twitching irregularly around the room. It started screaming something I first thought was "Why?!", but I realized it was actually "Where?!" after a few seconds. After that, this horribly gaunt face suddenly appears in front of my own. It's angry at me and seems to be screaming something I can't understand. It's the gray doctor from my last nightmare, but he seems much more sickly now. His body convulses, and it suddenly pulls back from me.

He fades away, and I slowly regain movement in my body.

I would think this a simple hallucination if it wasn't for the long, black streak on the area of carpet he approached me to scream in my face.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

entry 19

I had a conversation with Samuel today.

He called me shortly after I arrived home from work. He sounded very composed and lucid at the beginning of our conversation, though he seemed to be holding back a large amount of emotion. Like the meeting between Greg and myself, I have transcribed the conversation best to my memory with any intentional changes made mostly for easier reading.

Samuel: Uh, ****** *******?

Me: This is him.

Samuel: Good.

A quiet pause.

Samuel: I knew that I had to get into contact with you when I first found out about your blog. I've been looking for information regarding the Red King Project to surface on the internet for months now. I - It got got to the point where I only started checking every few days.

Me: Right.

Samuel: Uh, well - I was surprised. I have a hard time keeping tabs on all of you people all the time. Your condition seemed mild compared to certain others, but you're unique in that you're the first to bring this matter to the public. You overcame one of many obstacles placed in your path.

Another pause.

Samuel: I guess you gave me hope. You realize you're sick, right?

Me: Uh, I'm not sure that's the term I'd use.

Samuel: But it's true. You're infected with it. They have two options: you can let them finalize you, you can be locked away, or he will make you into it.

Me: Locked away? I'm not a dangerous person.

Samuel: You don't understand. You can't always recognize your prison. You keep expecting this to be taking place in a world of stability and logic. This is not- this is not what it is. You shift when it decides to shift you. Random times have their purpose.

Me: You're not making any sense.

Samuel: You're going to tell them.

Me: What?

Samuel: You will write what I say down, and you will tell them. I don't know what to say. I don't feel comfortable.

Me: They depend on me to get information regarding the project. My journal is useless if I do not share knowledge like this with them.

Samuel: I know. I know.

He sighs, and there is another pause.

Samuel: The most important thing to know is-

His voice cracks a little.

Samuel: To tell your children you love them...

Here he appeared to stifle a sob

Samuel: ...And put them someplace safe.

Me: I'm sorry - is that a threat?

Samuel: Things are picking up. About a week ago...

He starts to cry quietly.

Samuel: The hands took my baby away. My ex-wife doesn't even remember him.

His sobbing becomes more intense.

Samuel: And there's that girl living in my house. I don't know - I woke up one day and she was - I don't know who the fuck that even is.

Me: Jesus Christ.

Samuel: She's obnoxious and - and ignorant. I can imagine no scenario where I would be attracted to someone like that.

Me: I had something similar happen-

Samuel: I was supposed to be better!

Loud banging noise.

Samuel: God damn it. They told me things were going to get better.

Me: Who?

Samuel: I have to appeal to him now. I've already spoken with him. In the mirror today.

Me: Calm down. You're not making any sense.

Sam cries quietly to himself.

Me: What did he say?

Samuel: I'm the one...

A pause as his crying hits a high pitch.

Samuel: I'm going to be the one to put all the children to sleep.

Me: What?

Samuel: Hide them from me. Please.

Me: You - you sound worse than any other person I've spoken with.

I can't understand a word of his next sentence, but then:

Samuel: They're going to imprison you.

Me: You have to be more specific, Sam.

Samuel: But he'll utterly destroy you. His hands reach all around the clock. That's why he can't be caught. Killing him? You can't kill what's inside of you - what has made itself a vital part of you.

Samuel screams loudly as if in pain.

Samuel: There's no hope in you, is there? You shouldn't have taken my fucking head. I'll kill... I'll rape them with knives. I'm going to come in their-

I hang up quickly.

I have called the police, but, in their very first steps into the "investigation", they examined all relevant records and confusedly told me that no such conversation could have taken place. They told me that if I truly believed my family was in danger, it would be best to send them to relatives in a safe place. I'm doing just that. My wife and daughters are being sent to live with people I can trust in another state. They're furious with me as school's just recently started and everybody's settling into things, but it is obvious my wife knows that it is not safe to be here with me, though I know she misunderstands what the true threat is. I hope they follow my orders. I hope I don't lose them.

I will get around to the audio when I have time.

That is all for now. For once in a long time, I feel truly exhausted. I'm looking forward to sleep.

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Hallucinations.

In this particular entry I'll be going over the various effects people involved in the Red King Project have experienced.

It was posted in the conversation log, but it's worth reiterating that there are two things happening to people who were involved in the project: there are the people who are slowly going insane from hallucinations and memory problems, and there are those who isolate themselves from society before completely disappearing. At least five people I know of have disappeared, though the behavior they display before their vanishing have caused the police in most cases to lean towards them having voluntarily taken off. Those who were married have divorced their wives and left their families. They refuse to work and end up living in poverty. Not long after this, they disappear.

Those of us hallucinating seem to have longer lifespans. I know one old friend has been committed to a mental institution after he tore the flesh on his arm to pieces in an attempt to get "the dirt out". A more serious case would be another friend who left a suicide note behind but no body. These are the most severely damaged people of this particular group. There are some good stories. Another friend sought psychiatric help. He doesn't speak to me anymore, but I hear he's doing reasonably well. I wish I had the courage to do what he did.

I have managed to speak to a few others who were kind enough to go over some hallucinations they've been having.

A man I'll call Tom constantly sees a headless, gowned figure walking down the hallway outside of his bedroom if he goes into it at night and closes the door too late. There's a particular turn near his house where he says he constantly sees a person passed out, their body jerking around in sharp spasms. He's tried twice to help the figure, but it always fades away as he gets closer. He also has a problem with mirrors. Specifically, if he focuses on his reflection at all, certain things change. His eyes go from brown to blue, his head appears to twitch when he knows that it isn't, and, at the worst, he will be able to see his reflection, but not his mouth.

Another friend has the same, vivid nightmare every night. He's standing in the middle of a dark field, when he hears what sounds like a large vehicle coming up behind him. Turning around, he finds himself being set upon by a gigantic, human hand. Like experiences R.F. has gone through, he often spots black handprints in his house. He also prefers doors to be completely closed. Creaked open, he can see hands inching out of them.

A coworker I'll call Jim claims that lights in his house will randomly turn on and off. He used to go out on walks at night, but doesn't anymore because he can see figures moving around up in his bedroom. He has been separated from his wife for some time and lives alone.

I'll be going into more details soon, but these are the big hallucinations.

R.F. called Sammy today, but his girlfriend said he's held himself up in the basement and seems to be rather emotionally distraught by his sick mother's condition. She's been trying to coax him out for some time, and he almost came out after hearing R.F. had called. He decided at the last moment to stay locked in the basement.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The room.

I had a nightmare. I was being forcibly pulled through what looked to be a mental hospital. Aside from the orderlies and what appeared to be a couple doctors, there was also a large number of armed guards. Everything was absolutely covered in white. It smelled so unpleasantly sterile. I can't explain it.

We came to a big door that itself led to a huge room that seemed filthy and had dim lighting. A strange series of machines circled the center of the room. Looking at the machines, I saw people sitting in a chair in front of each one. Their heads were tilted as far as back the positioning would allow. Their foreheads were strapped to the machine. Their eyes were covered. Their mouths were tongueless and being held open with strange wires. As I was led to an empty seat, I noticed something else. Each and every person in there is missing their arms and legs. As this horrible vision sinks in, I notice the noise - they were all making these horrible noises. Some sounded like they were attempting to scream, others sounded as if they were gently sobbing, and a small few just seemed to be trying to speak.

I am fastened into my chair. I realize all the chairs have arm and leg straps. Of course, mine are the only ones being used. I realize this does not bode well, but I still fail to panic. It's not sinking in.

A young doctor approaches me. His skin is a sallow gray, and, yet another time I'm sure of more than just the shade of something, his bright green eyes contrasted sharply with the rest of his form. He seems to be experiencing a very thick nosebleed. He leans in to me and tells me to stay as still as possible. For some reason, I oblige. He reaches into a pocket on his jacket as if he's about to pull out something, but he freezes. He pulls his hand out and leans even closer to me. He's about to say something, but a thick, black glob of drool falls out of his mouth. He starts to make choking sounds. For a minute, it appears as if he's about to vomit, but he seems to swallow it back down. He recomposes himself, but something else is going wrong. His eyes - they were being pushed out of his skull. He made that awful wailing sound I heard in my other dream as both of his eyes slid out of place, that thick, black liquid forcing them out.

His face erupts.

The liquid sort of slowly pushes parts of his head out. His head has completely ruptured. His body, seeming to be its own sentient entity, starts moving around in spasms. In a combination of scooting and crawling across the floor in a jerky, uncoordinated manner, it takes leave of the room.

As it leaves, I can hear it scream a question to me. Even though the question is garbled and slurred, I still recognize it. It's a familiar one.


I wake up.

The waking day itself would've been mostly normal until I encountered a series of black handprints leading from my kitchen floor into the basement after getting home from work. Following it, I found an audio cassette in the basement. I had completely forgotten to look for the things.

I played it in an old tape player of mine. The first five minutes is audio of what sounds like wind rustling through trees and someone nearby breathing heavily. After those five minutes, you can hear car doors slamming closed in the distance and people talking. After a minute or so, the voices fade away. The other twenty-some minutes are exactly like the first five.

Sam's girlfriend told to call me he'd be getting home sometime Sunday afternoon. I'm interested in how that will go.

Greg will be answering questions asked by readers of the journal tomorrow night. If you have a question for him, address it to him and post it in the comments for this entry.

Friday, August 17, 2007

The meeting.

Greg and I met at a restaurant in a neighboring town. We spoke casually about our personal lives for some time, and I made sure to slowly and comfortably turn the conversation to the subject most important to me.

He spoke quietly but did not glance around or give any other signs of paranoia. I have tried to write down the conversation as true to form as it actually was. However, there were quite a few massive changes I had to make in some parts of the dialogue just to cut things down or make them more understandable.

Greg: I don't think the hallucinations are real.

Me: Well, that's what makes them hallucinations.

Greg: That's not what I meant. What I mean is, I think we're having this stuff implanted into us somehow.

Me: What?

Greg: About half of us who worked on the project are still working and staying socially active. The others... well, they sort of drifted away from society. Remember **** **********?

Me: He was an electrophysiologist, right?

Greg: Yeah. After the project, he just couldn't handle work anymore. Him and his wife were constantly arguing, and eventually he just got up and left his whole family. He wasn't working, he was blowing all his money on God knows what, he'd barely even speak to me, and he ended up living out of a hotel room somewhere in Utah.

Me: That's awful.

Greg: He disappeared two months ago.

Me: Probably just trying to get away for awhile. People - sometimes people need time to think things over.

Greg: Two months? When he was already living alone? Come on. You know that's not true.

Me: Hmm...

Greg: I spent three days calling up a bunch of our old comrades. Right now I'd say there's three camps of people left over from the project: people experiencing hallucinations, recluses, and people who seem to have fallen off the face of the earth. What's discouraging is that the recluses are the ones disappearing. That means at least half of us Red King vets are going to be gone soon. The other half of us may very well be going insane. It's a pretty convenient situation if a certain employing party had once done something questionable in front of these people.

Me: Wouldn't we remember something like that?

Greg: I don't know what memories to trust anymore. Sometimes when I'm waking up, I get these short visions. Do you remember ***** ******?

Me: Name rings a bell.

Greg: Same with everyone else. Everyone remembers that name for some reason, but I have yet to find anyone with that name who worked on the project. Well, like I was saying, I woke up one day after seeing this man... part of his face was just... it was awful. He was screaming for help. The vision faded away, but that name stayed with me the rest of the day - and ever since, to be honest.

Me: Are you saying you had a recovered memory of some sort?

Greg: That's exactly what I'm saying. Honestly, how much do you remember of the experiment?

Me: Well, I remember the tiles and the darkness. Uh, of course the figure stands out. There were pitches and a hissing sound-

Greg: Not the video. What were we all doing in the room at the time?

Me: Oh, come on. We were watching the video.

Greg: I'm saying I don't remember anything besides what we saw on the tape. I'm saying I got really... really weird in there before my memory fades out. I get tired, we're up close to the figure, but I feel like there's this huge amount of- of white space in there. Then we see the head twitching, and then [the subject] wakes up. I remember asking questions, but I feel like there's just another big white space after that.

Me: We were all very excited. I am very perceptive towards the odd, and I have grown a bit more paranoid recently, but I do not recall experiencing any sort of memory or time loss. I don't recall anything even hinting at that. My memories aren't exactly vivid, but there's a number of explanations for that. We were very wired about the whole thing, it was a very fast and confusing moment, and- and I could just go on and on with these.

Greg: I had another vision. It's sort of en expanded version of the one I already mentioned. I remember us seeing something else in that video. All of a sudden, a wire sort of - it's like it snaps out of place. It hits ***** right in the face. I think someone got hurt during the experiment.

Me: Heh. A lot of people got hurt on that project.

Greg: Isn't that a little weird? I mean, **** ****** got his hand lopped off in- in some sort of normal, everyday piece of machinery, there was an average of like three car accidents a month, the two pregnant women on staff both had stillborns, people felt sick and depressed almost all the time in that goddamn place, and then there was that guy in tech who just randomly suffocated while speaking with his daughter in a Denny's parking lot.

Greg quietly mumbles, "'Course, that could've just been the Denny's" to himself while I say:

Me: Wow.

Greg; Yup. I don't even want to mention that creepy little guy they'd send in to check up on you if someone thought you were hurt or if, heaven forbid it, you went on break too long. The man looked like a heroin addict.

Me: I never really noticed that stuff. We had a huge active staff.

Greg: I noticed it.

We went back to talking sort of casually after a quiet pause. Eventually, we came back to the subject once more.

Greg: You know, I'll never forgive myself for not thinking something was weird from the start.

Me: It was very ambitious.

Greg: No, I spoke with the [the subject] quite a few times before the experiment. I also read a lot of background information on him. He was- I don't know how you'll believe me.

Me: At this point, very little would surprise me.

Greg: ***, they gave him a test. The man had an intelligence quotient of 192.

Me Oh, you had to have misread that. Maybe it was 129. I mean 192 - that doesn't work.

Greg: Even if it was something like 129, that's still high for someone who's supposed to represent some sort of everyman, don't you think?

Me: Good point.

Greg: I don't remember our conversations that well. I know he always seemed very frustrated or tired. I know he was the sort of person who let his past get to him. I know he had a family he cared very much for. I remember he was a Methodist. I can't for the life of me remember our actual conversations. What I remember is like a brief synopsis. I know someone's kept in touch with him, but I forget who. It wasn't you, right?

Me: Nah.

Greg: Oh well.

Here there was another short pause.

Greg: I have one thing to give you, but don't examine it until you get home and know you're alone.

At this point, he takes out what looks to be a blank CD in a blank case.

Greg: This disc has got one image file on it. I've considered sending it to you or telling you about it before, but I figured anything I'd say would just get you too excited, and I didn't want to take any risks sending it by any kind of mail. It's something you should really see firsthand. After that, you can make the decision yourself.

Me: What is it?

Greg: It appears to be a screen capture of a moment from the video I don't remember seeing. It could be fake. I don't know a single buddy of ours who'd make a joke like this though.

Me: Hmm.

Greg: Just look at it yourself. Personally, it seems a tad off, but... well, not so much in a fake way as... you should just see it for yourself.

Me: Where'd you get it?

Greg: Someone claiming to be a sympathizer.

Me: Email?

Greg: Yeah.

Me: ...SST?

Greg: What?

Me: The email address - did it begin with SST?

Greg: No. It was [email taken out FOR NOW].

Me: I should get in touch with him. It'd be nice to have someone else help with the journal.

Greg: Subtle.

Me: Well?

Greg: Not anything regular, alright? Aside from going insane, I happen to be doing very well right now.

We chuckle, and the next minute or so is filled with silence. Greg seems to be trying to prevent himself from looking in my direction. His face has grown a bit red. He stutters a bit when he begins to ask me a question.

Greg: Have you ever though about seeing someone for- mentally.

Me: Sort of. It's just...

Me: I don't know.

Greg: I understand completely. Same here. **** [not mentioned previously for those of you who considered going back over censored names] did.

Me: How'd that go?

Greg: I wouldn't know. He doesn't speak to me anymore.

We spent a little more time just talking about how our other friends had been doing and, after that, soon parted ways.

I got home, and viewed the image he had uploaded to the CD.

It is very, very odd. I do not remember it at all. Like Greg, I find the picture sort of off. There's nothing I can specifically point to. The machine would've been perfectly capable of producing that image. I'm just not sure about it.

Greg will be sending me an email full of hallucination anecdotes and similar things he and other former coworkers have experienced sometime on Monday or Sunday. He's very hesitant about the whole thing, but I seem to have calmed him down a bit with the visit.

Still no word from Sam. I tried calling his girlfriend, but that met with no success.


Well, we headed out to the clearing pretty late last night. My neighbor (I'll refer to him as Dan from now on so I don't have just to keep calling him "the neighbor") and I decided that, until the clearing was at least further examined and its position notedas detailed as possible, it would be best to investigate ourselves. We were hoping that approaching the shack in the middle of the night would give us an advantage: if it was inhabited, he would more than likely be there asleep. This gave us the opportunity to simply analyze the area and check for his presence, then return home so we could call the police. If we were to somehow wake him, we would still more than likely have the element of surprise on our side.

I've really felt uncomfortable about reporting anything that could be hallucinations to the police. Dan seemed to be in it for the adventure, but I was simply worried of the possibility of cops arriving, surveying the area, finding nothing, and then eying me suspiciously as my wife whispered things to them about me. I don't want the local yokels to have a good laugh at me or the irony of an "insane psychologist" or whatever they'd think.

We spoke to our wives and told them that if we were gone for over an hour, they should call the police.

I took a small notebook, a couple of pens, and a flashlight. Dan was generous enough to let me borrow what looked like a miniature Bowie knife. He carried a gun, following my own flashlight and taking "mental pictures" of places he thought were important in locating the shack.

There was a light fog, but it really had no huge impact on our little adventure. There was a steady hum of wildlife resonating through the woods. We headed to the area of fence I had repaired the night before, and I turned to the section of forest I had first wandered into to find the source of screaming. I only told him I had heard strange sounds of activity in the woods. I never told him about the screams.

I was actually quite pleased with myself when it came to remembering the paths I had taken. I think we circled some small areas once or twice, but the rest went really well. Finally, we spotted the clearing and the shack.

We quietly crept around to the front, and I temporarily turned off the flashlight.

Peeking in the doorway, I realized that the shack was a little bigger than I had first thought it to be. It was by no means roomy, but there was enough space for a sleeping area, a table, a chair, and a large box. The squatter's bed was composed of what looked like a few layers of sheets and a pillow. The chair was collapsible. The box looked just small enough to carry with relative ease. The table was the only thing that would be difficult to procure and move. Still, Occam's Razor would say he just lifted it from the local junkyard and carried it all the way here.

The place was, as you should have been able to tell from the last paragraph, empty. For some reason, we decided it'd be good to go through things before heading back home. Opening the box, I found two books: what seemed to be a fairly new copy of Johnny Got His Gun and an older print of Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises that was missing its cover. We found four audio cassettes and one unmarked VHS tape. There was also a yellowed notebook full of yellowed paper and a large number of pens and pencils. For reasons that will become obvious, we were not able to examine these. There was also a matchbook, a clawed hammer, and a jar full of some black fluid,

There were only three things on the table: an old candle, a few pieces of paper, and a cheap pen with green ink. I wasn't sure how long ago the paper had been written on - the pen and the paper both looked pretty old and weathered. The writing, however, was still legible. I was about to read the top paper, and Dan had preoccupied himself with the notebook. Suddenly, we both stopped moving. Someone was breathing heavily. We turned to the doorway. A dark figure stood in the doorway. I knew I had to act fast. I had to choose between using my first move to pull out my knife or aim the flashlight at him. I did neither - I was paralyzed with fear.

Dan seemed to be suffering from an identical affliction. No shots were fired, and I don't think either of us even said anything. The figure simply stood there. After a moment, I realized I couldn't move. My chest was tight, and the sound of my heart beating was pounding in my head. The air seemed to be rippling somehow. I heard a strange slushing noise behind me. I couldn't move, though. I couldn't see it. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, I got my hand moving. After that, the rest of my body followed suit. I ran through the doorway, pushing the figure down. He didn't fall down right. There was something in the movement. He fell heavily and flatly - like a cardboard cutout.

The air was still rippling. I felt my legs go limp, but I managed to pick myself up quickly.

Very solemnly, just loud enough for me to hear him, I heard the figure speak.

"Don't go that way."

I just kept running. The ground was moving all around me. I saw something that looked like worms rising out of the ground. Briefly glancing at them, I realized they were squirming, human fingers. I screamed and ran off in another direction.

Watching the ground became one of the last things I wished to do, so I promptly ran into a small pond. I realized that I was quickly sinking. The pond seemed unnaturally deep. Looking below me, I saw what looked to be a strange swirl of life - maybe a weird school of fish or something - coming up towards me. As it grew nearer, I realized I was looking at what seemed to be a cyclone of hands, still somehow attached to long, tentacle-like arms, surrounding me. They wrapped around my body. I felt like I was being crushed alive. As I tried to scream for help, one particularly large hand stretched up to my face and grabbed it, covering my mouth, nose, and eyes. I was being suffocated.

In the morning, I woke up laying in grass near the part of the fence all of this had started at. I was mostly dry, but my hair was a little damp. The sun had just started to rise. I also appeared to be wearing only a pair of boxers and a t-shirt - what I would normally wear to bed. Groaning as I realized I'd most likely receive a "you must've been dreaming and sleepwalking" explanation, I headed off towards my house.

Everyone was still asleep, and I just sat in the living room watching the local news until my wife finally woke and came downstairs. She asked if I was planning on going to work, and I told her no. She told me that she didn't think he'd be coming back, and I didn't need to worry. This perplexed me.

Apparently, the experience with Dan was not entirely a dream. We did indeed head out into the night to investigate a possible squatter, and we seem to have found one. We came back to the house half an hour after leaving, laughing about stumbling upon a man in the shack mumbling and snoring in his sleep. We had decided to call the police, and an acquaintance of mine was fortunately on duty at the time. He came along with a back-up or two, but the squatter woke as they approached the shack. He quickly took off into the night, making a beeline between the trees and eventually escaping. There had been nothing in his besides a makeshift bed, a chair, and a couple of cans of food.

The police tried to capture him, but the fog, darkness, and trees made it difficult. He got away, but they told me not to worry about it. He had little reason to return.

I took all this information in with disbelief. According to my wife, I also went to bed with her last night. Despite the creepy circumstances of a homeless man living on our property, we had taken it stride and had all made light of it. I spoke with Dan, and he simply reiterated what my wife told me. I called into work and told them once again I wasn't feeling well.

Then I made an epic discovery - the piece of paper I had been holding when the figure walking into the shack was stuck onto my fridge. Same green writing, same yellowed paper.

The note is as follows:


no reason to fight it i am feeling fine

when you find me you will just begin to tip in

i am a caregiver first

but i on some ocassions[sp] must destroy

i was|am a profesional[sp] hypocrite

he feels good

with god you're never alone

but does it hurt

i hope not"

I have spent most of the day and night resting or trying to understand this. I must've taken it from the shack before I started to hallucinate. I had to have found it important, but maybe it isn't. I'm going to answer a few questions, but then I must sleep.

P.S. Unless he gets held up by something, I should be meeting with Greg tomorrow (er, Friday) night.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Squatter, Sammy, and Greg.

I had a bit of a troubling night, but I'm dealing with it fine

I had to go around my estate to mend up parts of a fence and clean out my shed. It's a seasonal event for me and usually one not worthy of any note. Well I'm out examining what looks to be a loose piece of fence when I hear the sound of screaming coming from the woods near my house. Now, I know there's a chance it could be all in my head, but I also know I wouldn't be able to handle the guilt if I let somebody get hurt because I ignored their cries for help. It was iffy that I'd actually find anything, but it was something I had to do.

Well, I only regularly go through walks in one part of that area. It's a little path that leads out to a small pond. I used to take the kids fishing and still go out there from time to time myself. I'm still unfamiliar with a lot of the other, more deep paths out there. I wander out trying to find the source of the screaming and (this is sort of embarrassing for me) got lost. It was late night, and I only had a little flashlight with me. I'm still hearing the screaming, but I don't know where I'd go if I actually found somebody hurt out there. The road had to be relatively close by - I just didn't know which direction I should head in to get to it. Not many cars drive by out there this late in the summer, so listening for traffic probably wouldn't help much.

I'm still hearing the screaming, but it's getting fainter, and I'm not entirely sure what direction it's coming from anymore. I decide it's best to try and find my way back to the house and report the strange noises to the police. I'm sort of stumbling through the area looking for familiar landmarks when I spot a small shack-like structure in a clearing some ways away. Moving closer, I remember something my father told me about when I was a kid.

My parents also lived out in the countryside when I was a child - mostly at the insistence of my father who had "spent too many years in cities". I shared similar experiences after college and have partially inherited my love of this style of life from him. However, he spoke to me more than once about things that do not happen in the city - things that you occasionally have to put up with living in this type of area.

It was a makeshift, squatter home.

Squatters are homeless who find abandoned or isolated areas to take shelter. They're more common in urban areas in poor countries, but there are also a larger number than one would expect in forested regions in the U.S. They are much more dangerous than the typical urban squatters. Urban squatters usually stay in large abandoned buildings or warehouses. Chances are you'll only come across their "homes" if you yourself are trespassing. Rural squatters are different. They take scrap metal and other basic materials, build their own little home (usually on a large, private piece of land), and live off the land or whatever else they can get. They probably won't come looking for you, but if you discover their set-up and there's a confrontation, many will put up potentially lethal fights.

A friend of my father's was almost shot by a squatter he found on his land. I knew the risks associated with these types. I moved only close enough to briefly take in some details. I tried to take as many mental notes about the land as possible and glanced around a bit at the shack.

It was built almost like a church - with what looked like a steeple and cross on top. There were no windows, and I couldn't see the door from where I was standing. The walls looked to be made out of particle board, some other kind of wood, and rusty metal material thrown together. It was eerily quiet in the clearing, and the screaming had completely went away by this point. I retreated out of the area, finding the road not long after and walking beside it until I was able to spot my house.

My nearest neighbor and I will be heading out there again tonight (he has a gun and has dealt with similar situations before) to see if it's abandoned and possibly try and scare him off. If we decide that's a bad idea, we'll just call the police.

Spoke with Sam's girlfriend today. She sort of worried me at first - mistook me for someone else, I believe (as if things weren't confusing enough). Turns out that Sam told her he had to leave to tend to his sick mother yesterday. She said she wasn't sure why he had called me and that he hadn't left any message for her to give to any friends. She's going to call me as soon as possible after speaking with him sometime.

Spoke with Greg again, but we basically just confirmed the meeting plans I've already mentioned here.

Just hoping we've got one of those friendly, only mildly crazy bums out there. I won't call up the police so long as he's willing to leave peacefully. Still, best case scenario is the damned thing being abandoned.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Quick post.

I'll be busy tonight, so I thought it'd be best if I update and answer posted comments now.

I asked my wife about Sammy, and she told me that I've known him for some time, and she met him herself at a Christmas party a couple of years back. I had to be cautious in how I asked her questions so we wouldn't argue again over her worrying, and it seems Sammy is a physical therapist who calls to chat often. I do not remember any of these conversations. Oh well.

I tried to call him back today (simply because I felt it the cordial thing to do - I have no idea how I would actually speak with someone who considers themself a close friend but one I can't remember) but no dice.

Moving on to another subject...

Good news!

My colleague in Toronto (who will go by Greg) called me today and told me that he had taken some time off not long ago and was already down in the States. He should be in California by Friday or Saturday. When he gets here, we'll get together and he'll discuss things he think will be of particular interest to myself and followers of this journal.

My Bad Day: the final details.

Shortly after my last update, my wife "arrived" home. According to her, she did have the car and I must've just been seeing things. This is true of course, but it did bring up some feelings of resentment I have towards the way she has started to treat me after the initial truck incident. She acts like I'm a handicapped child who actually believes in these things I know to be simple hallucinations. It's degrading. That coupled with the frustrating experiences I had gone through during the day really put me on a harsh defense. Well, she got into one of her lectures again, and of course that led to an argument.

So it has not been a very pleasant night in my household.

By the time we finally calmed down, I was too put off with the whole damn series of events to bother asking her about Sammy. I'll do so after work.

I spent most of the time after the argument trying to finish up some work that I would normally have done earlier, but my thoughts kept drifting, and I got basically nothing done. Between that and me leaving work early, I imagine tomorrow will not be very pleasant either.

I have given the person behind those mysterious emails the opportunity to step forward, and they have done nothing that remotely resembles an apology or explanation. I gave them a fair chance, but they wasted it. Oh well.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Another early post.

I'm having a bit of a bad day.

The first bad experience was a visual hallucination I had on my lunch break today. It wasn't frightening so much as it was confusing. I had decided that I'd go out to eat to a nearby diner that I've heard nothing but praise for. I walk in, sit at the counter, and get ready to order when I spot a man sitting alone in a corner booth who seems to be staring at me. I'm about to ignore him and order a sandwich when I realize that he looks just like me. Well, except for two things. He seems a bit older than me, and he's wearing an oil-stained, green jacket that I would never wear. Other than that, we were exact doubles.

Eventually, I think I made him feel awkward or something because he forced himself to look away from me and quietly continued to sip down coffee.

Okay, so either I've encountered someone who just looks like me or I'm having a relatively boring hallucination. Either way, it didn't seem like a huge deal. I order my sandwich, and as I'm eating it, he finishes his coffee and gets up to leave. Trying to remain as subtle as possible, I make a slight turn in the position in my seat. I just wanted to get a good, close glance of his face. He moves quickly, but I'm still able to get a good look at him. The age difference is much more noticeable but so are our practically uncountable similarities. He gets out the door, and I'm about to turn back around when I notice something: casually, as if it's his own, he gets into my truck.

I've been driving the truck a lot lately. I figure its best to familiarize myself with it and hopefully recover memories of it.

So he gets into my truck, pulls out his own keys, starts it, and drives off. Now, the impact of the situation hasn't really got to me. I'm just sort of staring with a dull, open-mouthed expression on my face. Once it fully hits me, I get up and chase after the truck as it drives out of the parking lot. Realizing I am completely incapable of catching it myself, I go back inside and pull out my mobile phone.

I consider calling the police but decide it best to call home first. A couple of employees seem to be staring at me, but I don't care. At home, nobody answers.

At this moment, I notice my truck is still sitting in the parking lot in the exact same spot I had originally parked in. I pay for the sandwich, have it put in a doggie bag, and call into work to tell them I've become ill. I check the truck for any irregularities and then try to make it home as quickly as possible.

The first thing I notice when I walk into my home is the silence. I know I'm alone. I start to panic and call out names when I wander into the kitchen and spot a note on the fridge.


went shopping with girls for school clothes

sammy called at 11 but I missed him"

This greatly relieves me. I sit down, try to remember who Sammy is, and head off to my study to try and get some independent work done on the computer. Heading upstairs, I remember something that horrifies me: my wife's car is sitting in our driveway. I check the garage, and my car's sitting in there. What's even more worrisome is that the truck is the only vehicle we ever keep in the driveway. It's like my wife's car was taken out of the garage and then abandoned.

Once again, I consider calling the police, but I don't trust my memory or visions enough to overcome my fear of possible humiliation.

Hoping there was a problem with her car and that she had a friend pick her up, I get on the computer and try to distract myself.

I open my email and find yet another message from our mystery friend. No pictures this time, just a paragraph of text:

"Why do you like to play pretend so much? Weren't you angry? Didn't somebody need to stand up and do something? Why were you so quiet? You always appear so accepting of your reality but you can't forget what's been done to you. She took it all away. It wasn't her fault. . . she was a victim too. She broke you. Don't you remember how hard it was for him to breathe? He was sick. The hospital. A slick road. You were drowning in it. Little Boy Blue lost. You were drowning in that black mud. Why didn't anyone help? You were screaming for hours and when they finally found you and they fixed you but they broke you. They took you into darkness and gave you a light of their own.

You're making it worse. You're a sideshow freak. I tell you this every year. Don't you remember my phone calls? Don't you remember me? I'm the only person who's ever looked out for you. You owe me to at least pay attention. Your wife will be home soon. Everyone's okay. Listen to me. I am not a threat. I am not a joke. I wasn't. You know very well you're not real. You're going to break their hearts."

I have been sitting here for about an hour. I am waiting for my family to come home. I will still give the person who's been sending me these things a chance to step forward because I am a man of my word. If he does not, I will have to reveal it here.

That's all for now.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


I logged onto the internet this evening in hopes of getting some work done, and I find I've received some rather unpleasant images from an unfamiliar sender. I just want to know who sent me these two pictures. Someone here obviously knows who I am and has my email. Whoever you are, please step forward. I'm not mad. I just want to know who you are.

To the rest of you, I am going to finish what I needed to do in the first place. Later on I'll be back to answer questions.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

The video.

I only now realize how silly it is not to have included a link to the video in the first place. While people who stumble upon the video first will get pretty much the entire story, people who come across this blog first may only be puzzled by the lack of any evidence of the supposedly important film.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

The end.

Looking back on the years spent working with such brilliant people on such an ambitious task, it's hard to believe it ended the way it did. Despite my success, despite the love of my family, despite taking the loss of such a personal project in stride, despite the sympathy of friends, I am afraid.

I am not afraid of my former employers coming after me. Even in this journal I detail nothing that can be confirmed or traced back to them. It would be a waste to "hunt me down" or take legal action and would only serve to validate my claims.

I do not fear death. I do not fear pain.

What I do fear is the accumulation of the things I still do not know. I fear the significance of this project and the hallucinations that follow me. I fear paranoia itself. I fear the idea of no one else ever seeing this video. This is simply a burden I do not want to carry on my own. I want others to analyze this and ask themselves questions. I want others to perhaps figure out the riddle of the figure who stands so defiantly in the subconscious. If this question is ignored or unanswered, everything will be for waste.

I appreciate having glimpsed something like this. Many of my life's ambitions have been filled as a result of my work on the project. I can tolerate the hallucinations and the fear. I just want others to see this and to think.

I am leaving now, though I may be back from time to time. I am trying to move on with my life right now. I have a feeling the years ahead of me will be quiet, strange, and sad. This is one price I have to pay.

It was still worth it.

The aftermath.

This was going on to some extent before the cancellation, but I figured it'd be best to place it here as it's still affecting people today.

The project has affected many of us involved mentally, it seems. I personally experienced a short bout of night terrors, but still have aural hallucinations and, quite rarely, visual hallucinations.

The most constant aural hallucination is one I must wake up to everyday. It's a sound of screaming outside of my bedroom door, one that sometimes articulates itself as a repeated cry of "Why?" It still upsets me to hear, but my recovery time from it is much more quick nowadays. The other day I actually responded to the familiar question with, "I don't know."

Another common aural hallucination is the distant sound of my name being called out. This usually occurs sometime during the evening, I have heard sounds of laughter, footsteps on the roof of my home, someone reading what sounded to be an excerpt from a book, groaning, classical music, strange humming and pitches, and a large number of other, equally mundane sounds. My family never hears any of it. I am aware of the fact that these noises are all in my head, and I'm learning to accept it.

Sometimes I see the figure from the video. Sitting on my back porch this summer, I saw him in a field behind my house. He watched me. I watched him. As fog rolled in, he disappeared. I do not like doors cracked open in my home anymore, as I can always sense and half-see someone looking out of them. A vivid experience was walking into my bathroom in the middle of the night to find it absolutely caked in a muddy, black substance. Because of my tiredness and the amount of detail, I was unsure if it was even a hallucination at the time. Moving closer to clean some up, it faded away.

Some of my former coworkers also seem to be experiencing all of this. There is one group I try to keep in touch with and meet every three or four months. We get together, have dinner, and, inevitably, someone begins to mention... it. We all nod and mumble in quiet acknowledgment of the fact that there is something wrong - not something entirely destructive, mind you - just something that's changed and unusual. Our conversations always have an edge of quiet paranoia to them, and this is something I think we all carry around in our daily lives now. Some of them are moving away from their cities and towns. They're isolating themselves. I lived out in the countryside long before the project, so I have not been affected in this way at all. Still, we've all lost and gained something not at all properly explainable.

Was this project worth it?

Without a doubt.

The cancellation.

By October of 2006, rumors were circulating that our superiors were going to cancel the project. I, and many others, ignored them. There was simply no reason to cancel something that had been such a massive breakthrough in psychology and one of the few examples of such a lofty investment paying off. I thought the rumors stemmed from the fact that the funding increase after the success of the initial test was less than what would be considered standard. It was a sign of hesitance that made certain people anxious.

On November 17th, 2006, we all found out that the project was indeed canceled. The reasons were vague and peppered with words like "unsatisfactory", "mundane", "questionable", etc. These words were, for the most part, contradictory to everything the project had proven to be. If they were not satisfied by a successful test run, what would satisfy them? I thought about it and considered the possibility that they expected something longer or something that gave more of a glimpse into the human mind. As a scientist, this bothered me.

Science is not a series of gigantic leaps. Scientists of the 20th century did not just send a man to the moon overnight. First, you had to get the machinery into orbit, then you had to send up animals to see if the experience was even survivable, then humans could only go so far into orbit, then we had to build better and more powerful machinery, then we had to test that, and only then, after years of research and trial and error, was a moon landing possible for humans.

I would say this experiment is the equivalent of sending a man into orbit. There's been all sorts of techniques and ideas as to how examine the human subconscious: the theories of Freud, hypnosis, typical psychoanalysts, and so on. This, however, is the first time we've actually been there. For them to cancel such a project seemed foolish at best and downright detrimental to human progress at worst.

The theories.

After the video was deemed by the staff to be more than likely an "acceptable approximation" (there are little certainties in this line of work), the majority of our time was spent broadening the database, looking through potential test subjects for future tests, figuring out why our subject had woken up during the run, and analyzing the video. By September of 2006, the various theories had gathered their own groups of followers on staff, and analysts (me being one of them) had a hard time cooperating with colleagues who subscribed to different ideas regarding the video.

I was a believer in the theory that the mind had detected our presence and blocked us as a defense mechanism. The human body is designed to protect itself - a common fact - but the thing is that people generally apply this line of thinking only to physical aspects of the human body. The truth is that our minds are just as well prepared to defend us as our immune systems. Since the subject was aware of the experiment, the mind recognized itself as being vulnerable long before we actually started looking around in it. It knew we had technology potentially capable of viewing his fears, weaknesses, etc.

In fact, I believe it decrypted itself for us. Perhaps most of the time it would appear as abstract imagery, but it knew we wouldn't understand this. It knew, to show us we were unwanted, that it would have to display itself in a form easily understandable to humans.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The significance.

As mentioned multiple times by now, we did not expect anything but strange, moving shapes. The mind, to anyone who has spent much of their lives researching it, seems too complex to function like the slightly surreal, internal worlds seen in so many cartoons and similar fictional representations of it. The mind should be a place where thoughts are not tethered by what our eyes are used to seeing. It should be a place of almost random, feverish chaos - only decipherable with years of study and work.

Instead, we get a humanoid that seems to imply, rather clearly, that our presence is known and unwanted. I suppose its knowledge of us isn't too amazing. The subject had a very good idea as to what we were doing, of course. It's the way it chose to display itself. It seemed to be blocking us off from even greater secrets that lie further into the seemingly infinite area behind it.

Keep in mind that the machine was not made to function like a camera. We imagined its position staying stationary. Instead, the subconscious moves itself in a way that appears the machine's reader is acting like some sort of camera. It, the figure and the landscape, move toward us, though we are the ones who seem to be moving. Why did it choose such a strange way of moving itself?

One specialist proposed that by creating the illusion of us approaching it, it emphasized our perceived intrusion. It was standing guard. We approached it. It blocked us. Well, so it would seem.

The experiment.

The experiment was originally slated to take place early in the first half of 2006, but problems concerning the storing of all the volunteers' information in one database delayed it until July. We had a large number of subject candidates, but the person we felt best suited to represent the average (American) human was a slightly overweight, middle-aged factory worker of average intelligence from northern Illinois.

As stated in the video's introduction, we were expecting abstract images and sound. Even these would be valuable, for with enough research and examination, these could potentially be deciphered and their subconscious meanings figured out.

What we got was in some ways simpler than this - on the surface. However, it actually presented an almost infinite amount of complexity underneath the easily recognizable human form in a pose most obviously one of defense or rejection.

When the video was first viewed, many involved were afraid that we had used too much reality-based imagery when gleaning information from the volunteers. It was theorized that a lack of attention to the abstract could be responsible for an inclination towards such familiar and real objects. A thorough (and time-consuming) examination of the database showed that, if anything, the abstract imagery heavily outweighed any familiar shapes. With an inclination towards the unrecognizable, the machine had spat out an image understandable to anyone but the blind.

The audio was a different story. There was a much more casual investigation of the sound database that revealed it being much more balanced than its sister database. Still, the video featured not even a second of music or speech - just strange tunes and pitches.

The video ends on a half-glitch. Only about three seconds of actual video have been cut from this (just more nothingness at the beginning - I was not able to obtain the full version, though it makes no real difference), but you can see our subject beginning to wake up as the figure's head moves around spastically and the reading/viewing program ended as he exited the "dreamworld".

The machine.

I figure it's best to explain the basic mechanics of the technology used to create this video before anything else. An understanding of the machine is necessary in realizing the significance of the video and circumstances presented further on.

Part of the machine is attached to the subject's head. Special goggles are placed over the eyes. Vibration sensors (known generally around the lab as TTs - Tremor Trackers) were placed at strategical places on the subject's face. Wires were inserted into the neck, arms, and shoulders.

The subject was given a sedative designed so as not to too heavily affect the stages of sleep. Once the machine detected the subject entering the rapid eye movement phase of sleep, we initiated its reading process. The machine studies subtle fluctuations in brain activity, slight facial movements, blood flow, eye movement, and, most importantly, brain waves. The machine uses the information from this and converts it to a video/audio presentation (though I was unable to obtain a copy of the video with audio).

The machine bases its conversion on information collected from a massive number of volunteers. The volunteers were asked to wear an early and lightweight prototype of the reader part of the machine while imagining and viewing various images (both abstract and reality-based), as well as listening to a large library of sounds. The type of information these readers collected from the volunteers' brain activity and the like was manually correlated with what the volunteer was viewing, imagining, or listening to at the time of processing.

The correlations recorded with the aide of the volunteers was used to create a database usable for "translations". The machine was programmed to read the subject's various stats and, using the information gleaned from the volunteers, hopefully create an accurate approximation of what the subconscious was imagining. This program was not able to completely replicate the happenings of the subconscious and is dependent on basic shapes, shades, and pitches. This explains why the imagery in the video seems rather primitive - like something from the eyes of a creature with strange and poor vision.