Friday, November 12, 2010

The Rake

During the summer of 2003, events in the northeastern United States involving a strange, humanlike creature sparked brief local media interest before an apparent blackout was enacted. Little or no information was left intact, as most online and written accounts of the creature were mysteriously destroyed.
Primarily focused in rural New York state, self proclaimed witnesses told stories of thier enounters with a creature of unkown origin. Emotions ranged from extremely traumatic levels of fright and discomfort, to an almost childlike sense of playfulness and curiosity. While their published versions are no longer on record, the memories remained powerful. Several of the involved parties began looking for answers that year.
In early 2006, the collaboration had accumulated nearly two dozen documents dating between the 12th century and present day, spanning 4 continents. In almost all cases, the stories were identical. I’ve been in contact with a member of this group and was able to get some exceprts from their upcoming book.
The Rake
A Suicide Note: 1964
As I prepare to take my life, I feel it necessary to assuage any guilt or pain I have introduced through this act. It is not the fault of anyone other than him. For once I awoke and felt his presence. And once I awoke and saw his form. Once again I awoke and heard his voice, and looked into his eyes. I cannot sleep without fear of what I might next awake to experience. I cannot ever wake. Goodbye.
Found in the same wooden box were two empty envelopes addressed to William and Rose, and one loose personal letter with no envelope.
‘Dearest Linnie,
I have prayed for you. He spoke your name.’
A Journal Entry (translated from Spanish): 1880
I have experience the greatest terror. I have experienced the greatest terror. I have experienced the greatest terror. I see his eyes when I close mine. They are hollow. Black. They saw me and pierced me. His wet hand. I will not sleep. His voice (unintelligible text).
A Mariner’s Log: 1691
He came to me in my sleep. From the foot of my bed I felt a sensation. He took everything. We must return to England. We shall not return here again at the request of the Rake.
From a Witness: 2006
Three years ago, I had just returned from a trip from Niagara Falls with my family for the 4th of July. We were all very exhausted after a long day of driving, so my husband and I put the kids right to bed and called it a night.
At about 4am, I woke up thinking my husband had gotten up to use the restroom. I used the moment to steal back the sheets, only to wake him in the process. I appologized and told him I though he got out of bed. When he turned to face me, he gasped and pulled his feet up from the end of the bed so quickly his knee almost knocked me out of the bed. He then grabbed me and said nothing.
After adjusting to the dark for a half second, I was able to see what caused the strange reaction. At the foot of the bed, sitting and facing away from us, there was what appeared to be a naked man, or a large hairless dog of some sort. It’s body position was disturbing and unnatural, as if it had been hit by a car or something. For some reason, I was not instantly frightened by it, but more concerned as to its condition. At this point I was somewhat under the assumption that we were supposed to help him.
My husband was peering over his arm and knee, tucked into the fetal position, occasionally glancing at me before returning to the creature.
In a flurry of motion, the creature scrambled around the side of the bed, and then crawled quickly in a flailing sort of motion right along the bed until it was less than a foot from my husband’s face. The creature was completely silent for about 30 seconds (or probably closer to 5, it just seemed like a while) just looking at my husband. The creature then placed its hand on his knee and ran into the hallway, leading to the kids’ rooms.
I screamed and ran for the lightswitch, planning to stop him before he hurt my children. When I got to the hallway, the light from the bedroom was enough to see it crouching and hunched over about 20 feet away. He turned around and looked directly at me, covered in blood. I flipped the switch on the wall and saw my daughter Clara.
The creature ran down the stairs while my husband and I rushed to help our daughter. She was very badly injured and spoke only once more in her short life. She said “he is the Rake”.
My husband drove his car into a lake that night, while rushing our daughter to the hospital. He did not survive.
Being a small town, news got around pretty quickly. The police were helpful at first, and the local newspaper took a lot of interest as well. However, the story was never published and the local television news never followed up either.
For several months, my son Justin and I stayed in a hotel near my parent’s house. After we decided to return home, I began looking for answers myself. I eventually located a man in the next town over who had a similar story. We got in contact and began talking about our experiences. He knew of two other people in New York who had seen the creature we now referred to as the Rake.
It took the four of us about two solid years of hunting on the internet and writing letters to come up with a small collection of what we believe to be accounts of the Rake. None of them gave any details, history or follow up. One journal had an entry involving the creature in its first 3 pages, and never mentioned it again. A ship’s log explained nothing of the encounter, saying only that they were told to leave by the Rake. That was the last entry in the log.
There were, however, many instances where the creature’s visit was one of a series of visits with the same person. Multiple people also mentioned being spoken to, my daughter included. This led us to wonder if the Rake had visited any of us before our last encounter.
I set up a digital recorder near my bed and left it running all night, every night, for two weeks. I would tediously scan through the sounds of me rolling around in my bed each day when I woke up. By the end of the second week, I was quite used to the occasional sound of sleep while blurring through the recording at 8 times the normal speed. (This still took almost an hour every day)
On the first day of the third week, I thought I heard something different. What I found was a shrill voice. It was the Rake. I can’t listen to it long enough to even begin to transcribe it. I haven’t let anyone listen to it yet. All I know is that I’ve heard it before, and I now believe that it spoke when it was sitting in front of my husband. I don’t remember hearing anything at the time, but for some reason, the voice on the recorder immediately brings me back to that moment.
The thoughts that must have gone through my daughter’s head make me very upset.
I have not seen the Rake since he ruined my life, but I know that he has been in my room while I slept. I know and fear that one night I’ll wake up to see him staring at me.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

String Theory

Have you ever had an experience that suggested someone else was in your house, and just thought “I don’t wanna know” and left it? Sometimes, fear of the unknown just seems like the preferable option than facing a real, concrete danger. Normally it’s nothing, though. One time, the beeper function of my wireless housephone went off, when I was the only one home. It could only be called from the living room. Another time, I swear someone took some change from my desk. They’re all probably just slightly disconcerting tricks of the memory.
But what would you do when something truly suggestive happens? Would you run, or just ignore it, like I did?
Last Monday was a normal day. I got up, brushed my teeth, changed into school clothes… All little parts of my morning ritual. It seemed like it would be another totally un-noteworthy day, until I saw the strings.
There were three or four thick twine strings in my room. They criss-crossed between the walls around my bed, one attached to the door. No way would I have missed them before; I should have tripped over them. They were tied to pins in the walls, which had also not existed before ten seconds ago.
Nobody could have been in my room while I was in it, let alone set this up. It was early, and my brain wasn’t processing correctly. I simply discredited the sight, untied the strings and left for school, leaving them balled up on my desk.
It didn’t get any better later. Outside my house there were hundreds of them, tied between houses, around cars, across streets… This had to be some super elaborate prank. One of those hidden camera shows, or a comedy improv blog. They had gotten everyone else to play along too; passer-bys were tangled in them, tying them to objects they were walking towards and away from, as if they had been and were continuing to follow the course laid out for them.
I nervously continued my journey to school. On the bus, every except me was tied to the door. At school, groups of friends were tied to each other; teachers were tied to their desks and boards. Oddly enough, at this point all I could wonder was why I had been left out.
When my friend Lucy sat beside me in first period, she simply plonked her bag down on my lap and rested her chin in her hand, looking right past me to the window outside.
“Hey Lucy.”
No response.
“Come on, I didn’t expect you to be in on this too. “
She sighed and started taking books from her bag. All the books were tied to her hands. I grinned, and yanked one of the strings off a book. She didn’t seem to notice, instead simply disregarding the book completely, letting it drop to the floor without a moment’s hesitation.
“Um.” I leaned down, picking up her book and placing it back on her desk. She took no notice.
“Well, if that’s how we’re gonna play it.” I smiled, trying to look playful, but really just trying to hide my nervousness. I bundled all the strings attached to her together with one hand, then pulled them all free.
She blinked, turning to stare at me.
“Holy crap, Martin. You’re like a ninja or something.”
“I’ve been sitting here for maybe ten minutes.” I smiled again, relieved my friend had finally “noticed” me.
“Where did all these strings come from??” She gasped, seemingly noticing for the first time.
“I assumed you were all fucking with me…”
She stood up, backing into a corner. No one else in the class noticed.
“They weren’t here just a minute ago! Do you see them too??” Her tone made it clear she was genuinely scared.
“No. Didn’t you-. “ I was interrupted by my teacher slamming the door behind her. Everyone except me and Lucy murmured a good morning, and still, no one seemed to pay either of us any notice.
“People have been ignoring me all day.” I said to Lucy, before turning to our teacher. “Hey! Dumb bitch! You can’t teach for shit!”
No reaction.
“I’m getting away from all this shit.” Lucy pulled a few strings aside and left the class. I followed, and surprise-surprise, no one else noticed.
We wandered the corridors, leaving and entering classes as we saw fit. Whenever we untied a chair or book from someone else, it was like it suddenly didn’t matter to them. It didn’t exist.
I showed her the street outside; there were more strings than when I came in this morning. Twice as many. We carefully picked our way through the tangle, making our way to a nearby coffee shop. Not particularly grand, I know. But what would you do in our situation? As I said, fear of the unknown sometimes seems like the safer option. On a few occasions, I suggested we untie a few more people. Lucy was opposed to it, remembering how terrified she’d been.
In the coffee shop, we grabbed a couple of sandwiches and drinks from the fridge. We found a table, untied all strings attached to the chairs, and sat down. We both ate in silence, both of us too scared, both of us distracting ourselves by watching the strangers in the shop, oblivious to the strings.
After twenty minutes, Lucy spoke up. “Now she’s gonna take that sandwich.” She said, pointing at a woman across the shop. Sure enough, she walked to the fridge and took the plastic wrapped sandwich she was tied to. “She pays for it and leaves.” She did so, according to the prophecies of the strings. “That guy doesn’t intend to pay.” I watched as a man took his coffee and ran out of the store, the two servers just looking too exasperated to go after him.
“This is horrible.” She whimpered. “Let’s go. Please.”
Outside wasn’t much better. Everyone just followed the strings’ instructions, going about their daily lives. Lucy announced she was going home to sleep this off, and I agreed to walk her home. She only lived ten minutes away.
Away from the busier part of town there were fewer strings. It was nicer; we could pretend it wasn’t happening.
When we turned onto Lucy’s street, she stopped, her mouth falling open.
“What now?” I broke the silence, my voice sounding surprisingly small.
”Look.” She pointed outside one of her neighbours houses.
I saw it clearly, and I’ll take my memory of that moment ‘til the day I die. A little dark imp, maybe three feet tall, walking along with its knuckles on the ground, almost like a monkey. It had two bulbous yellow eyes taking up about half its face, and no mouth or any other facial features. It was holding a hammer and a ball of twine, which it was letting out behind it.
It walked quickly and quietly from the front door of the house to the mailbox. It stopped, hammered a nail into the side of the box, and tied it’s string around it. It turned to face us, and stopped when it spotted us.
My bottom fell out even further than it had already been, but it just stared with a look of surprise and curiosity. You could almost say it was the more frightened one. Suddenly, it beckoned to us with its tiny hand.
I looked at Lucy, she hadn’t moved. I looked back at the imp, which stared at me.
I halved the distance between us, and then halved it again. This wasn’t fear of the unknown anymore; it was fear of this little guy. Didn’t seem like anything to be scared of. When I was a meter away from it, it extended its hand.
“Uh. Hi.” I shook it. It nodded in approval, blinking its massive yellow eyes up at me.
“So you’re the ones in charge of the strings?” It nodded eagerly. I called Lucy over, but she stayed where she was.
“There are more of you?” Another nod. I wanted to ask it so many questions, about what it was and where it came from, but it seemed for now I was stuck with only yes or no questions.
“Do we even have free will?”
It just looked at me, almost sadly. I immediately felt sick to my stomach, and couldn’t bear looking at the little monster anymore. I grabbed Lucy, who had been listening to our exchange, and now sat on the curb with her head in her hands.
“Come on.”
We entered her house, and I made her a cup of tea. When I found her in the living room, she had untied her dog and was curled up with it, crying. I set the tea down and sat beside her.
“I’m so scared.” She whispered after a good ten minutes of sobbing. I didn’t answer. I couldn’t.
“I’m going to sleep” She mumbled suddenly, and was under within the minute. Sleep was starting to sound pretty good all of a sudden, my eyelids suddenly felt like they were being weighed down.
I collapsed to the rug, and the last thing I heard before I fell asleep was the scurrying of several sets of little feet nearby.
I felt much better the next day, as if the whole affair had been a dream. I’d probably have believed that if I hadn’t been awoken by Lucy’s mother that morning, wondering what I was doing sleeping over without permission or something.
Over breakfast, Lucy asked me why I looked so pale and nervous. I turned to her and smiled, mumbling something to her about feeling sick.
But the truth was, I was scared because I couldn’t see any strings, and was wondering whether my actions were truly my own.

Credited to Tesla.

Playing With Sound

Does anyone remember talkboys? They weren’t anything special, just a nifty looking tape recorder. They came out roughly around the same Christmas that Home Alone 2 was released, there was a whole load of hype over them, remember the trailer where Kevin plays back his hotel order down the phone after recording it? He uses the function that let’s you slow down the voice, posing as his dad. I thought that was awesome, I figured if I had one of those I’d be able to fool adults with ease, calling people up and ordering a new TV and stuff for the house…maybe my dad would even keep it, he’s pretty forgetful - you never know!
I never got one that Christmas, never really knew why but the huge collection of presents that Santa did bring me were enough to distract me from it’s absence, I was pretty happy with my new bike, that was the obsession of the moment. I forgot all about asking for it, actually, although I do remember seeing the ads on TV for a while. Instead I just let the snow clear and spent the next few months obsessing over the toys and games that I was given.
My birthday came in November much later the next year, I remember turning eight and having a party thrown for me at the house. Thankfully, the talkboy came too - along with Home Alone 2 on video of course. It was great unwrapping it, I mean I was never selfish and I didn’t really demand much as a kid but getting what you’ve asked for is a fantastic feeling. I ripped it out of the box straight away, tore off the packaging and carefully lifted it out in front of my friends. I was so pleased with it, it even looked cool. The microphone was extended towards you and it was so easy to hold, I grinned and laughed and pressed the record button.
“Hello!” I yelled into it before rewinding and playing it back.
My voice sounded so odd, I’d never actually heard myself speaking before, it was such a strange sensation to hear how different it seemed. I looked at my dad, puzzled, and he laughed. Everybody laughed and I eventually joined in. I remember that Andrew reached over and tried to take it off me, demanding a chance to play with it but I pushed him away and shook my head.
“Nuh uh, I’m not done yet.” I lifted the receiver again and spoke into it:
“Andrew smells!”
He huffed and folded his arms, pouting and looking angry with me but I wasn’t phased, this was why I’d wanted it so badly in the first place. I rewound quickly, flicked that little black switch to make the talkboy repeat what I had said in the slow, deep voice like in the movie, I held it up so that everybody could hear me insulting Andrew in slow motion.
”Yes, he does,” said the talkboy.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Suicide King

Modern playing cards are filled with layers of meaning and symbology that can be traced back centuries. The four kings, for example, are based off of real rulers: the king of diamonds represents the wealthy Julius Caesar, the king of clubs is the brutal Alexander the Great, Spades represents the strong but kind David of Israel and Hearts represents the… emotionally disturbed, shall we say, Charles VII of France. It is this king that we will be dealing with today. It should also be noted that Charles was the only one of the four who was actually there to see the day that his face was printed on a playing card, which may rationalize why he acted apart from the others.
Charles’ visage was put on the king of hearts at the very beginning of his rule, but he never really got a chance to come into contact with playing cards until many years later when he became very ill with a fever and was informed that he would be bedridden for the rest of his life. It was during this period that Charles began learning card games to pass the time, such as an early version of black jack, “vingt-et-un” (twenty one).
Charles lay in his bed for two years, constantly fiddling with the cards and always getting weaker. As time continued to pass, there were reports that Charles had begun obsessing over the idea that the king being the thirteenth card in a suit was causing him bad luck. He talked about how he was starting to see the number pop up everywhere and that he was close to figuring out its secret. Of course, his ramblings were blamed on the fever, and by the end of the second year, he had been declared insane, and his son Louis XII took over the thrown.
One day, several months after the end of his reign, one of Charles’ physicians went to his chamber to find the frail old man standing in the middle of the room wielding a large sword. Before the doctor could react, the king said, “Ils m’ont montré la vérité de treize, et il n’est pas signifié pour les yeux mortels.” which roughly translates to, “They have shown me the truth of thirteen, and it is not meant for mortal eyes.” Without hesitation the king proceeded to ram the blade in through the left side of his head (between the ear and temple) until it came out the other side. He wavered a moment, before collapsing to the floor dead.
After the incident was announced and it was made public that the king had gone mad, the image of Charles on the king of hearts was altered to show himself offing himself. Although the picture is now shown significant-ly less graphically, the image of Charles thrusting the sword into his skull can still be found on modern day playing cards. Perhaps the strangest part of the whole story, however, is the day that Charles chose to kill himself: 7/6/1462. Whether or not it was intentional of the king, the facts that 6+7=13 and 1+4+6+2=13 can only be explained as coincidences.

Friday, August 27, 2010

La Nuit

In France, a young ambient musician by the name of Charles undertook an interesting new project. He was going to record the sound of himself sleeping, and release it under the name “La Nuit” (The Night). Charles lived alone in a rural area, which would remove things like car alarms, traffic, and such from being recorded. He planned his project for many months, acquiring the sensitive equipment to capture all outside noises as well as his own during sleep.

Finally, on the 27th of September, he decided to execute his plan. He set up all his equipment, and fell at sleep at midnight.
The next day Charles reviewed the recording. For the first hour, the recording played his own tossings and turnings as well as some distant dog barks and a few car alarms (So much for his plan to distance himself from cars). These continued throughout the 2nd hour as well, until Charles heard something that horrified him.
For at exactly 3 hours and 24 minutes in, the recording played the sound of his bedroom door opening.

Guess I'll post some creepypasta here then.

Subject: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

Does anyone remember this kid’s show? It was called Candle Cove and I must have been 6 or 7. I never found reference to it anywhere so I think it was on a local station around 1971 or 1972. I lived in Ironton at the time. I don’t remember which station, but I do remember it was on at a weird time, like 4:00 PM.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

it seems really familiar to me…..i grew up outside of ashland and was 9 yrs old in 72. candle cove…was it about pirates? i remember a pirate marionete at the mouth of a cave talking to a little girl
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

YES! Okay I’m not crazy! I remember Pirate Percy. I was always kind of scared of him. He looked like he was built from parts of other dolls, real low-budget. His head was an old porcelain baby doll, looked like an antique that didn’t belong on the body. I don’t remember what station this was! I don’t think it was WTSF though.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

Sorry to ressurect this old thread but I know exactly what show you mean, Skyshale. I think Candle Cove ran for only a couple months in ‘71, not ‘72. I was 12 and I watched it a few times with my brother. It was channel 58, whatever station that was. My mom would let me switch to it after the news. Let me see what I remember.
It took place in Candle cove, and it was about a little girl who imagined herself to be friends with pirates. The pirate ship was called the Laughingstock, and Pirate Percy wasn’t a very good pirate because he got scared too easily. And there was calliope music constantly playing. Don’t remember the girl’s name. Janice or Jade or something. Think it was Janice.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

Thank you Jaren!!! Memories flooded back when you mentioned the Laughingstock and channel 58. I remember the bow of the ship was a wooden smiling face, with the lower jaw submerged. It looked like it was swallowing the sea and it had that awful Ed Wynn voice and laugh. I especially remember how jarring it was when they switched from the wooden/plastic model, to the foam puppet version of the head that talked.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

ha ha i remember now too. ;) do you remember this part skyshale: “you have…to go…INSIDE.”
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

Ugh mike, I got a chill reading that. Yes I remember. That’s what the ship always told Percy when there was a spooky place he had to go in, like a cave or a dark room where the treasure was. And the camera would push in on Laughingstock’s face with each pause. YOU HAVE… TO GO… INSIDE. With his two eyes askew and that flopping foam jaw and the fishing line that opened and closed it. Ugh. It just looked so cheap and awful.
You guys remember the villain? He had a face that was just a handlebar mustache above really tall, narrow teeth.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

i honestly, honestly thought the villain was pirate percy. i was about 5 when this show was on. nightmare fuel.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

That wasn’t the villain, the puppet with the mustache. That was the villain’s sidekick, Horace Horrible. He had a monocle too, but it was on top of the mustache. I used to think that meant he had only one eye.
But yeah, the villain was another marionette. The Skin-Taker. I can’t believe what they let us watch back then.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

jesus h. christ, the skin taker. what kind of a kids show were we watching? i seriously could not look at the screen when the skin taker showed up. he just descended out of nowhere on his strings, just a dirty skeleton wearing that brown top hat and cape. and his glass eyes that were too big for his skull. christ almighty.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

Wasn’t his top hat and cloak all sewn up crazily? Was that supposed to be children’s skin??
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

yeah i think so. rememer his mouth didn’t open and close, his jaw just slid back and foth. i remember the little girl said “why does your mouth move like that” and the skin-taker didn’t look at the girl but at the camera and said “TO GRIND YOUR SKIN”
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

I’m so relieved that other people remember this terrible show!
I used to have this awful memory, a bad dream I had where the opening jingle ended, the show faded in from black, and all the characters were there, but the camera was just cutting to each of their faces, and they were just screaming, and the puppets and marionettes were flailing spastically, and just all screaming, screaming. The girl was just moaning and crying like she had been through hours of this. I woke up many times from that nightmare. I used to wet the bed when I had it.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

i don’t think that was a dream. i remember that. i remember that was an episode.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

No no no, not possible. There was no plot or anything, I mean literally just standing in place crying and screaming for the whole show.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

maybe i’m manufacturing the memory because you said that, but i swear to god i remember seeing what you described. they just screamed.
Final episode of Candle Cove
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

Oh God. Yes. The little girl, Janice, I remember seeing her shake. And the Skin-Taker screaming through his gnashing teeth, his jaw careening so wildly I thought it would come off its wire hinges. I turned it off and it was the last time I watched. I ran to tell my brother and we didn’t have the courage to turn it back on.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?

i visited my mom today at the nursing home. i asked her about when i was littel in the early 70s, when i was 8 or 9 and if she remebered a kid’s show, candle cove. she said she was suprised i could remember that and i asked why, and she said “because i used to think it was so strange that you said ‘i’m gona go watch candle cove now mom’ and then you would tune the tv to static and juts watch dead air for 30 minutes. you had a big imagination with your little pirate show.”
Hi bbbbbbrothers.