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Insomniac

By Kilonova All Rights Reserved ©

Thriller / Horror

I

Have you ever wondered why yawns are contagious? Everyone has questioned it at some point in their lives. It's just always been one of those mysteries that no one understands. So simple, yet so elusive. Until now...

It began with an innocent yawn.

The monotonous, endless tick tocking of the clock seemed to echo against my skull, each vibration gnawing at nerves. My window was cracked open, offering a suffocating warm breeze and the infuriating buzz of cicadas. It was almost unbearable...the blandness. The redundancy. My eyes longed to close. My mind ached for release from reality. But neither would ever happen...

I don't remember much from the beginning, truth be told. I don't think many people do. Memory; one of the first casualties as the brain shuts down, as the grey matter begins to shrink, the cells lazily commiting harakiri. A haze begins to form...a murky shadow cast across your thoughts...and nothing remains but ever-persisent grogginess. The only thing I ever think about now is sleep. The only thing I crave is release...

No one really understood what was happening in those first few weeks. No one understood that the incessant yawning was actually a virus, once dormant, but now unleashed on the world. People still went to work, ableit with dark circles under their eyes. But their routines became slower, mired in exhaustion. Their steps looked dragged down by gravity. The skin on some began to sag and droop with scaly patches of dead cells. It was like witnessing the living dead...

And then the deaths started happening. Freak accidents. Pedestrians struck and smeared into the pavement. Surgeries gone horribly wrong, organs ripped apart by the flick of a sleepy wrist. A pilot even crashed directly into a skyscraper, but this time the calls of terrorism were quieted. There was something much fouler at play, and people began to realize this was much more than coincidence.

The first theories involved the Sun - something about the magnetic field flipping and reducing the amount of melatonin, destroying our circadian rhythms in the process. But this was quickly ruled out by researchers. Next, they attempted administering chemical tests on people, trying to force the brain to sleep. One such "test" included gassing an entire crowd of restless people, but rather than going unconscious the subjects simply died. When this failed is when the real panic began. At that point it had been three weeks, and the symptoms of infection were beyond typical insomnia. The world was becoming a literal waking nightmare...

People roamed the streets chasing shadows, conversing with schizophrenic voices in their own heads. The freak accidents became more than unlucky circumstance - they became targeted. Violent psychosis was spreading. There was murder rampant everywhere. Corpses lined the roads. And how lucky those corpses seemed...they were finally at rest. Finally at peace. I don't remember much now, but I do remember this insanity unfolding...

...and now, as the monotonous, endless ticking of the clock continues, I can't help but long for death. I crave that eternal sleep, release from this endless cycle of despair. I don't know how much longer I can endure...how much longer before my sanity gives out and gives way to the creeping death inside of me. I can already feel it beginning...not with a yawn, but with the incessant, psychotic sound of a laugh...

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Dinzy: I actually liked it although I did not find it fit to be a horror story at all. It was a lot more mystery and fantasy than horror but it was very interesting and a good read.

Deleted User: This is a very clever story in the style of 19th century (and turn of the century) Gothic writing, very reminiscent of Stevenson's The Body Snatchers or even of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (less so of Frankenstein itself, since the author is more minimalist than Shelley's florid, Romantic rhetoric). ...

europeanlove: I gotta hand it to you. I love reading. I read books everyday. When the book is good I can read it in probably 13 hours. Your story was amazing. Great prose, very imaginative. Incredible dialogue. I am deeply impressed. Keep it up.

Deleted User: (A review in progress). I like this. It's sparse, gritty and atmospheric - reminiscent of the classic Golden Age of American detective fiction of the Thirties. I've only read the beginning, but I'll definitely be back. This writer knows their stuff and has done their homework on detective work. T...

harry142018: This story was gripping and very professionally written. With lots of twists and slight of hand tricks, the author deceives the reader until finally showing their cards at the end. With several subplots all intertwining to create the main plot, this really is an interesting and engaging read.

Kiz16: After a truly shocking start to the story, I found the style and content slowed down as the author introduced a varied group of characters who I thought were fleshed out very well. After a slow couple of chapters, I found this story difficult to leave with the tension growing within the house. Yo...

kim: This is great! Maybe it could just be a little more specific. One of the keys to great writing is describing things in detail. I think you're off to a great start. I wish you much luck.

Dinzy: To begin with,If you have not read this story yet; well what are you waiting for... Go and read it. The best part of this story is how each character is describing the story in their own words. For example, my favorite parts are chapter 38 and 39 when we start reading what Ava says then it jumps ...

Jan Imonti: Loved the story, but didn't like the delivery...had to read this on my computer on line. Wasn't able to download it to my kindle. Excellent story, lots of twists and turns. Fairly quick read. Love the versitility of Mitchell's writing. Keep up with the great mysteries.

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