Thunderingthought OP t1_j49bw44 wrote

Have you ever seen pictures of those flooded rooms, so full of water the floor beneath them warps and forms a hole? There is one picture where the floor is so full of water that it breaks the wood beneath, and protrudes into the basement. They're almost scary to see. They look unnatural. And I suppose neglect is unnatural. It's unnatural to let a problem compound long enough for it to look like a monster.

Lies are a lot like that. When I felt the first orange lie slide out of my mouth, I caught it in my hand and slid it into my pocket. I told her that I just had a little bit of a cold, then I had to turn and catch another lie that plopped into my hand. I loudly coughed, trying to make my feigned illness convincing.

I caught another lie in a paper napkin in my mouth after I told her that her cooking was good. I didn't want to hurt her feelings like the burnt, undercooked fried rice hurt my mouth and throat.

She is special to me; my lies are mundane, routine, even. Each day I come home with bulging pockets full of orange, soft lies, and each day I hurriedly place them in my closet. But lately I have been having trouble closing the door without a couple of them spilling out. For each lie I cram and kick in, another tumbles out.


The air conditioning in the Home Depot is too high. Chills caress me as I grow small goosebumps. I pick up a plastic five-gallon bucket. One won't be enough. I pick up two more. The cashier tries to make small talk as I check out.

"Whatcha planning?"

"Just a fun little project." I nod and turn, and a lie falls out of my mouth. It plops as it lands into the bucket. This project was not going to be fun.


I'm going to have to get rid of these lies someday. Someday I'll tell her she's awful at cooking, that my pockets aren't full of trinkets I find on the ground, they are full of lies, and someday I'll say to my co-worker that he is an asshole. And someday those lies will dissolve way. But there are a lot of lies that will stay forever. Inconsequential, short interactions, like the Home Depot Cashier, or the barber I went to once and never again (for good reason). And eventually, my lies will pool up, rancid and rotten, and maybe they will form into a terrifying thing that looks like a monster. I mumble that I will deal with it when the time comes. Another lie rolls out of my mouth. I put it in one of the buckets in the closet.


Thunderingthought OP t1_j498btz wrote

I always felt like I was being observed, ever since I was a little kid. I could feel eyes on me. Adults said it was stress or pressure. I knew better.

When I was a kid I used to naively picture some sort of ghost or ghoul, following my every footstep, breathing every breath with me. I imaged a cartoonish villain, a boogeyman I could point and scream at.

When I was eleven I wanted to see my specter. To make it know what it felt like to be seen. I wandered out into the fields. Tan, rolling hills, as far as the eye could see. The straw-colored grass collapsed under the dusty blue sky stained with dull clouds. It made a little swish, swish as I walked through it. I felt like I was walking down an aisle in a church, towards an altar. Or towards a casket.

I walked for about 30 minutes until it was just me and the hills. I spun around, looking for my audience. There was no one there. There were thousands of eyes on me. There was no one there. Panic seeped into me through my skin. There was no one there. Terror jolted me, there had to be someone there, there had to be someone looking at me, how else could I be watched? There was no one there. The eyes observed me, simultaneously impersonal and engaged. There was no one there. I spun around again and again, then I started running through the hills, frantically searching for what was watching me. There was no one there.

I don't know how long I ran, but it was long enough to make little eleven-year-old me collapse to the ground. I laid on the crunchy grass, looking up at the murky blue sky stained by grey clouds. I decided to stay there until I caught my breath.

No words can describe what happened next. Whatever you are picturing in your head, is not what happened. It didn't close then open, it didn't flicker, it didn't have an eye like us, it didn't do anything you are thinking of right now. The cloud blinked.

I stayed frozen. Time started to melt. I couldn't say how much later it was, but later, another cloud blinked.

They were all watching. All the clouds were watching. The sky was a cacophony of eyes. Constantly observing, constantly watching, silently staring at everything. Clouds were a witness to everything. Everything.

There was no one there, and there were so many watching me.

Nowadays I avoid open spaces. It's easier to cope with being watched if you can pretend someone is watching. I usually wear hoodies or hats, but I know it doesn't make a difference. The clouds will see me no matter what I do. They have to. I can't go to my car, go to my office, go to the grocery store without them knowing. They bear witness to everything we do. Everything you do. They know all of us.

The clouds have eyes. And they're watching.


Thunderingthought t1_j21uirg wrote

It’s been 36 days since I’ve last seen a living person.

I see dead ones all the time. More often than not they’ve been dead for days or weeks. Torn open and left to rot. Rotting organs spilling out onto the pavement or floor, deep red or dark brown, or beige grey, depending on how old the corpse is. Flies swarming like bees swarm a nest.

Do you know what happens when necrotic tissue rots for long enough? It melts. It turns into an organ goo and melts into the nearest porous surface. Usually, their old clothes, but occasionally a carpet or couch cushion, depending on where they died. Then it dries, like paint, and the liquified organs act like glue.

The worst part is the smell. The stench of thousands of bacteria colonizing and making homes for themselves. The gut bacteria, released into the open air, an offence to your nose and an attack on your senses. It can be smelled from hundreds of feet away. It’s the type of smell to make your eyes water, and to make you gag thirteen times as you use your blunt kitchen knife to try to separate the more palatable cuts of meat.

sigh But it’s worth it. The taste of your brethren is divine. Maybe it’s the disease that makes it taste so sweet, or maybe it’s something that’s been in me my whole life. But when I cut those tender, marbled strips of muscle off of the bodies, I feel as though dukes and royalty of old times would envy me. The way the meat just falls apart in your mouth, the slime of rot sticking in your throat after, is borderline orgasmic. The rot juice iss nature’s finest sauce, naturally formed on this first-class cuisine.

I’ve lost control a while ago. I know I have. I tell myself I’m acting, roleplaying, just pretending to be one of the undead. I tell myself I’m playing along, trying to ensure my own safety and survival, lest the undead detect and consume me. But when they do detect me, in the rare occasion I do see one, another stumbling former person. They detect me as one of their own, and leave me be.

I tell myself that’s great news, that I must be such a great actor, that broadway stars and shakespeare himself would be proud of me. But I know they would be horrified.

Going insane isn’t like the movies, where there is a definite crescendo, and then a snap and a bang. Going insane is like falling asleep. It definitely happens, but there’s no one point where you can say, ‘ah, that’s when it happened’. You slowly fall into it, so slow that you don’t even realize it. You’re gently lulled into undead scavengery, the disease’s fingers coaxing you into doing worse and worse things.

Geez, I should listen to myself. I’m such a great actor. No wonder the undead think I’m one of them.