A long time ago I used to work as a supervisor of the clothing outlets department in a mall in my city but not anymore, not since what I saw there. The mall is a really famous one. I had my own office. My job was to wear my supervisor uniform and name tag, and well… supervise the workings of my department. I would take care of all the shipping, distribution and other such jobs of the department. It was a really tiring job working for eighteen hours a day from eight am to two am the next day morning the entire week. There was a reason why I wasn’t working my usual day shift which ends at five pm. The guy who worked the night shift, Jake, disappeared a week back. Just like that. No phone call, email or letter to say he was leaving. Just gone…
I had waited for him to check in that day, the day he disappeared, to hand over control before leaving but he never turned up. I called his home and mobile but no answer. The manager tried with no different luck. He then, with much frustration and promise of extra pay, told me to take over until he was able to fix the situation by either finding Jake or a new guy. The situation seemed temporary and the money was good. I wasn’t short on dough or anything but who doesn’t like some extra cash. I could save some and go somewhere nice on a vacation, right?
Weeks passed and he was never found, neither was a replacement. The manager filed a missing person’s report. The job was taking a toll on me and six hours of sleep wasn’t cutting it. I went to talk to the manager to take me off the shift but he gave me an order to clean out the Jake’s office and dump his stuff in some good will. I got an eighteen hour job and then I have to do this? Fuck…
There was no arguing with an order like that so I scheduled a slot at the end of the day for the job. The day went on smoothly enough and, surprisingly, the night shift ended five hours early. We were given the day off for tomorrow. A full maintenance check was underway. Everybody was heading home and I got my stuff and was heading for the door when I remembered I had to clean that Jake’s room. I cursed under my breath and rushed back in, leaving my stuff with the security guard.
This is going to be quick and I will not waste a good night on that bastard’s stuff, I thought, moving, towards his office. It was in the far corner of the department supervisor level of the building. As I neared it I realised I forgotten the keys…
I stopped as I saw that his keys were keyed into the door…
What the… How was the key here? Isn’t it supposed be with…
The doubt lasted a second.
Not my problem. The manager must’ve left it for me.
I shrugged and went inside.
He was a total slob. Ended up creating more problems for me to solve in the morning shift than taking care of stuff. He stayed all the time in his office, so I’ve been told and everyone in the whole department loathed him. As I’d expected his room was well… a huge mess. Files lying around open, a T.V. set, VHS player, crumpled paper and stained tissues, unwashed coffee mugs, half eaten donuts and possibly semen stained carpet from whenever this guy had been jerking off in his lonely nights…
This was a job for the cleaning staff, not me…
I felt revolted at this bastard. I used small plastic covers as a gloves I began shoved all the garbage on the floor into a bigger trash cover to dump it outside later. I arranged all the files, got a small broom and dusted the place up. Rest of the stuff was easy and it didn’t look like much was going to go to charity. I arranged the furniture and was emptying his drawers when I found an odd key. The key was similar to a one I had. It was the key to the safe in his office, just like in mine. I was intrigued as to what this guy held in the safe. I dropped what I was doing and keying it in, I opened it. There were some cheesy magazines and a lot of VHS tapes. Looks like I had found this guy’s porn stash. The magazines held no interest for me and proved the fact that he’d been a bored jerk-off. My curiosity was piqued, however, by the tapes. I pulled them out and examined them. They were marked with dates rather than descriptions or names. Some weren’t marked at all, indicating that they were empty.
Now my interest was piqued even more.
What kinda guy marks porn tapes with dates? I set the tapes on the table and pulled up a chair next to the T.V. and recorder. I powered them on and pushed the tape marked with the earliest date. I leaned back in the chair as the recording on the tape flickered on. Little did I know that, today, I had been too curious…
The screen was blank for a few minutes before the video and audio flickered to life. It showed a small rectangular wooden room with a single white bulb in the corner and a small chair on the floor. The camera look liked it was at chest height and from behind the wall. A secret recording… I looked at it with doubt, first, then with alarm as I realised what the room was. They were trial rooms. This guy had probably set one up behind a fake mirror. I turned them off, shaking my head. This guy was a fucking pervert…
Had he really recorded footage of the goings on in a trial room? How the hell had I not known about this guy’s perversion? Then it occurred to me that it shouldn’t be much of a surprise considering his character… I had a gut feeling that this was why he’d disappeared. Had somebody found out about this? I felt obliged to find out what was in the tapes that was the possible cause of his disappearance.
Like I said, today, I had been too curious…
I played it again and it showed an empty trial room for the first few minutes so I just kept skipping frames until there was some activity. The door opened and a woman, holding a few dresses to try walked in. My doubts about his reason for disappearance shifted more to the tapes now. She undressed and changed into the clothes she’d brought with her. I’ve got to admit, she did look pretty hot and I felt myself aroused. Then she looked dead straight at the camera. Shit. I froze expecting her to run out screaming and call the manager but she just looked into the mirror. I laughed when I remembered that I was watching recorded video and that the camera was probably behind the mirror. She tried on the other ones and left. After that room was empty for some time and then more women came in, tried on their clothes and left. Some looked hot and some not so much. Some of them felt frisky and sat on the small chair there to pleasure themselves. Some came in with their partner. After about an hour of video the tape came to end.
I flipped it with the next one in order and watched. The same thing… I watched on, progressing from tape to tape as the women undressed and change into the clothes, admiring their figures in the mirror. Some of them never wore anything under their dresses. Some just draped the dresses across the front to look at it. Some would just change into them, price tags and all, and walked away. But then I started getting bored so I picked up random tapes. More recordings.
At the same time I wondered how this guy had retrieved the tapes from the recorder. It’s not like he had regular access to the store’s trial room and these tapes couldn’t hold more than an hour of video. That’s when I noticed the wire running from the player into a tiny hole in the wall. The camera recorded the video and transmitted it to the player here. Which means that he probably could view them live as well as record them here in the safety of his office. That smug sonofabitch! All this time the whole staff and manager thought he’d been a dumbfuck… Who’d have ever known he’d be this cunning…
Just then the tape cut to black and auto-ejected itself. I picked up another tape and shoved it in. The screen was empty for a few minutes and then it came on. The door opened and a young woman walked in. Damn she was hot! She was wearing a simple hooded shirt and jeans. She was carrying a bag. Her red lipstick shimmered in the light of the bulb. She held up a dress over her body and looking straight into the camera. I’d watched every woman who’d come here. They either had the gleam that women have when they try out new clothes or the disappointment when the clothes don’t fit or the naughty look when they come inside to pleasure themselves. But she didn’t have any emotion in those eyes. Just blank, dead eyes…
She dropped the clothes and her bag to the floor with a huff and began undressing. She pulled off her shirt and let her hair free. No brassier. She cupped her soft succulent breasts and she began removing her pants.
Just another frisky woman…, I thought.
She’d removed her pants and dropped aside and she started running her hand over her curves. Then she moved further towards the camera and smiled slightly. It was the first emotion her face had shown and it made her look prettier. I heard soft clinging of metal in her bag. What the hell is she doing?, I wondered at the metallic sound. She pulled out a bolt-cutter and stood up. She shuffled it between her hands feeling the weight and she smiled even wider now. My expression went from one of mildly amused to one of pure fucking terror. I thought back to Jake disappearing. Had she figured out she was being recorded? Was she going to break the glass and expose Jake? Was this why Jake had disappeared? Had I stumbled into a possible evidence in a missing person’s case?
My imagination was running wild and heart racing. Then suddenly she turned around and I sighed relief. None of what I’d imagined was going to happen. This wasn’t some major thing that caused Jake’s disappearance. Then it clicked. What was she going to do with the bolt-cutter?! I watched more intently now, trying to figure where this was all going. But I hadn’t imagined everything she’d do…
She sat down and faced away from the camera. She’d stopped shuffling the bolt-cutter in her hands. Was she waiting to attack someone from the inside?
Suddenly, with a scream that toppled me off the chair, she jerked her hands as though she was pulling something, something I couldn’t see. Whatever she was doing was hidden from me but the way she threw her head back in pain, I knew… Then I heard more sickening screaming as she twisted something with the bolt-cutter. I puked violently by the side, in contrast to how little noise her little finger made as she tossed it to the side. I could see the crimson red blood spouting from her fingers. Then she did something I didn’t expect in all my life.
Moaned like she was pleasuring herself. I was watching the video of a woman pleasuring herself by self-mutilation and I was petrified, unable to move or clean the vomit from the side of my mouth. It was pointless as I puked again and again until my stomach had nothing to throw up. By then she’d pulled most of the fingers off of her left hand leaving only a bloody stump. All the fingers were lying on the floor next to her and the wall was sprayed with blood. I couldn’t even scream at the horrific way she moaned by hurting herself. I thought to maybe switch this shit off and go home but I couldn’t move…
I thought she was going to begin on her right hand but she actually turned towards the severed fingers and admired them as a curious kid would and smiled widely. Things turned worse here…
She pulled out a butcher’s knife from her bag using her right hand and she grinned at her legs. Casually, as though all this was normal, she hacked at her thighs… Like she was a born butcher or something. The knife began making deep cuts in her thighs. Blood spurted out like she’d hit an oil line. Of course she didn’t cut through completely. The bones were too hard. She seemed disappointed at that and flung the knife at the camera. I actually shit my pants. The putrid odour of faeces permeated the air and I felt even sick to my very core… She picked up the knife, with a determined look on her face this time, went to work on the other leg too. By now, my senses had taken over and I wondered why she wasn’t dead from the blood loss or pain. Gut instinct told me that whatever she was, she probably wasn’t human.
Having completed the legs she turned her attention back to the bolt cutter. She opened up the bolt-cutter and place her small supple jaw between its gleaming metal ones. I closed my eyes. I just… couldn’t watch it and I turned away from the T.V. screen and tried to block it out. Block it all out. It didn’t work. I could still hear her screaming like a banshee, making my ears ache like hell. She moaned again. I turned to look as she did and I could see that bolt cutter had pulled away the teeth from the front part of her upper jaw and she was holding them out, examining and playing with them like little trinkets. Blood was dripping onto the floor like water from a broken tap.
I began to feel dizzy as I watched her clamp into the clamp the bolt-cutter into her lower jaw. Her mouth slid into a smile, awkwardly prevented by blood-stained the bolt-cutter and this time the screams were even more deafening. She was forcing me to watch. I don’t how or why but I felt myself being forced to watch as she mutilated the rest of her jaw. I could feel it. The pain. It felt as though my own jaw was being ripped out.
Then abruptly she stopped. She dropped the bolt cutter and her head snapped towards the camera! This time, for sure, she knew she was being filmed. She smiled again and I felt my heart race. I was crying from the sheer horror and I felt my strength drain. Even now she looked beautiful except for the fact that she was awash in blood and that she was missing fingers. Her grin grew wider, revealing her toothless mouth, as she proceeded to bring her mutilated hand towards the camera like she was reaching for me only to be obstructed by the mirror.
She placed her hand on the glass and brought her mouth closer and…licked the glass, leaving a trail of saliva and blood on the glass. She licked again, and again. I could see the evil in her eyes from this close. She wrote on the glass, using her blood as ink,
And I blacked out.
All I could remember afterwards was suddenly flickering my eyes open to see someone over me screaming. I smiled. It wasn’t as bad as her screams. I felt hands. Many hands circle my body and lift me up. I heard more people shouting. Everything was a blur. I blacked out again.
This time I woke up and realized I was in a hospital. I was in bed and there were people surrounding me. Doctors, nurses, my boss, my co-workers, two policemen. I need to talk to them about what I had discovered last night. I tried to say something but I couldn’t form any words. All I could do was mumble some words out. The doctor on my right just stared at me as though I was some freak at a show. I tried to speak again but failed.
“You need to rest. You have been subjected to…” I looked at him confused. The policeman interrupted and said that they needed to ask me a few questions. The doctor nodded and ushered everyone out. I was alone now with the policemen. So I tried to sit up to talk. But then I realised that I was too tired to move. I shrugged and lay back on the hospital bed. There was some tasty looking fruits on my right next to my bed, presumably for me. I picked up one and tries to bite into it. All I felt was unexpected, brutal pain. I probed around my mouth with my tongue. They sat down next to me and said, “Sir, we’d like to ask a few questions.”
“Go ahead, officer.” I said with some difficulty.
“Do you have any recollection what happened?”
I told them what exactly happened.
They looked at me puzzled. “Sir, the evidence suggests otherwise. There’s no Jake who works in your mall…”, they looked at each other and continued, “Sir you’d been found lying in front the mirror ,drenched in my own blood and faeces by the security guard who’d come looking for you. You’d cut out your fingers and teeth with a bolt cutter. You’d hacked away most of your legs with a knife. You’d written “HI!” on the mirror using your blood.”
I was completely shocked.
“But you must look at the tape! It’s in the recorder!!” I pleaded.
“We did, sir. It was empty.”
It’s been hard… the past few days, trying to get up and out of bed, when nobody is there. Crawling toward the laptop on the far side of the room. Finding out a good place to post this. Typing all this with one hand. To get the word out. Of what happened to me.
They don’t know. They don’t know what I saw. They have no idea that the woman that who I saw in those tapes is here, with me, with her mutilated body. They don’t know that she…no, it follows them too. And that it’s been showing me who it’s gonna play with next.
They don't know.
But you do.