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I They Prey

By Fatima Salahuddin All Rights Reserved ©

Mystery / Thriller



Death Has Arrived

Life is full of surprises, we spend so much time planning for the present and the future, in hopes to make a better and brighter outcome for ourselves. We live our lives through the lenses of ignorance day after day, never once thinking or believing that anything could go wrong. That everything in our world is perfect, flawless… huh… I have to say that we are definitely a species who have chosen to live blindly, and every time we do we suffer the consequences.

I should know better than anyone, what it’s like to lose everything… to have your entire life flipped upside down without warning… to be striped of every ounce of hope, and at the same time trying to keep from falling off the edge.

Truth is my mind, body, and soul cannot go any further… my time here has come to an end. The remembrance of me, my beloved and the once brightly lit home full of joy and laughter will be short lived in the hearts and minds of others and then soon everything will go back to normal.

It’s almost as if we never even existed… invisible to the “naked eye” like a ghost lingering in a place it can’t escape from. That is exactly, what I have been experiencing since the day you were misplaced out of my life for three long, dreadful years. It’s been difficult trying to keep my hope alive or at least some shred of it.

But in the end your long absence from this town we used to call our home has sadly, numbed the hearts of everyone here. People began growing bored and tired of the search, as time passed so did they leaving me behind empty as I slowly began to fade into the shadows. Yeah, it’s been really… I… don’t know what to do anymore other than face the worst case scenario, THE HARD… COLD… TRUTH!

So why is it so hard, after all I have nothing to lose right…? Whatever I may have had before that was worth my life, worth everything has already been gouged from my heart, a heart with no longer a purpose or a meaning to live. Just an empty shell slowly disintegrating little by little, piece by piece until there is absolutely nothing left. So why…! I mean, all I have to do is just close my eyes… think of a happy place, then put the weapon to my head and simply let go of the trigger. I don’t understand… why am I still here? What am I waiting for?

I took a deep breath slowly inhaling and exhaling, I began counting to ten when suddenly the ground beneath my feet started to quake and my beloved family portraits started falling from the walls. The ceiling above me began to quickly tremor almost on the verge of collapse.

I turned around to get a good look of what was taking place outside, but before I was given the chance… death had finally, taken hold of me in the shape and form of massively huge waves of water crashing and tearing apart every house before it eventually, swept away mine… Do you think you could ever forgive me for killing you?

"The Dream"

Chapter One(Part One)

It happened again… the dream. It awakened me out of my sleep in the middle of the night like it normally does. The constant huffing and puffing as my body lays hunched over on one side of the bed, struggling to inhale the most liberating element on earth we call “air”. The never ending immersion of bodily secretion soiling my clothes and sheets almost every single night.

So, with that I get up time and time again to wash away the remnants of sweat that has become a mere reminder of my precious past in which I failed to protect. My calamity has bestowed a blighted desolation upon me that I must agree is a just sentence to serve. Why wouldn’t I be anything, but a “criminal” especially after all that has happened? The car accident, the debris and shards of glass covering every inch of the crime scene within its radius or so it seemed.

It’s been three years since then and still no sign of her, no trace of her presence anywhere, nor the sound of her voice or even the shuffling of her footsteps… absolutely nothing. And here I am a killer “scot free” when it’s clear that I should be the one punished by death not her. It all seems so unreal like a “dream” that anyone expects to wake up from, even now.

However, I know that no matter how badly, I want to dissipate the horror of that dreadful day and instead, fill the enduring emptiness with light and happiness. I know that no matter what, nothing will ever be the same nor will I ever be the same man I once used to be.

Every day I ask myself what I could have done differently to change the past. At this point in my life I guess it really doesn’t matter what I could have done differently or not. Truth is what happened has already come and gone and along with it my beloved Leah. Since the day that flipped my life upside down I have done everything possible to bring back normalcy and sense into my life but it was useless.

I don’t understand anything anymore just like my dream that always finds its way resurfacing back in my mind. I’m always standing in the part of the house where fond memories are mostly, made and shared. Where pictures of loved ones are mainly, displayed… in my dream I’m always standing there ready to consume my last breath… ready for all my pain and suffering to be over.

The dream is my mirror that reflects my deepest and darkest emotions buried within myself. There used to be a time when I would inflict my callous mentality upon those whom resorted to madness as a solution to their bottomless void… their way out. “Now look who’s talking” back then I would not have even entertained the thought of such a disgraceful ideology, but now it seems to be my only option to alleviation. People keep telling me things will get better and eventually, I will move on, but I just can’t see that becoming a possibility when Leah… my wife made everything in my world normal and perfect.

Your tear drops on the surface appear to be, so perfectly full as they heavily, stream down your face. However, every drop of those tears you shed from your eyes are as empty and hollow as your beating heart... sweet dreams- Elaine.

"Day Seven"

Chapter One(Part Two)

After The Crash

Mercy Hospital

There is neither question nor doubt in my mind that I would die a thousand times over for you.

Oh really! (She chuckled with a smile of profound excitement smeared across her lips as her eyes laid strongly connected into his) And what makes you so certain with such conviction Mr. … Patterson... after all, we just met.

Despite the shortness of time that we’ve known each other, I know standing here before you that my heart is surely in the right place.

Well Mr. Patterson, I guess we will have to see about that.

I will definitely, take that as a challenge and by the way it’s Jack… my name is Jack.

Mr. Patterson… Mr. Patterson… I’m detective Paul Wilson and this here is my partner detective Ron. We would like to ask you a few questions about your wife…

“There is neither question nor doubt in my mind that I would die a thousand times over for you”.

Excuse me… I don’t understand... (Detective Wilson)

I laid everything out for her… that statement to my beloved Leah was proof of my love, loyalty, and devotion that I would effortlessly, bestow upon her if in the end she decided to choose me. All that hard work I poured into those words that came from within me… I planned that day so perfectly, to go to her place of work around 1:30 p.m. which at the time was my lunch break. I would normally, grab a good magazine to read from Gram’s selection. Gram…?

Do you mean that public library on Pear Street?

Yes… (Patterson) she worked there as a librarian… I waited for her to show up for a while, until my lunch break was over. When there was still no sign of her presence anywhere in the library, I felt completely heartbroken with no hope left that I would ever see her again.


Look Mr. Patterson, I don’t mean to suddenly interrupt you on your journey down “memory lane”, bu…

As I was on my way out, a glimpse of “something” or rather “someone” abruptly caught my attention. Now I’m beginning to think that if I had just kept walking towards those doors regardless of my curiosity, we would have never met… nothing would have bound us together. B-but now she’s... (He cries and hyperventilates)

Now hold on a second, if you think that getting yourself all unraveled is going to help us in your wife’s investigation then you are sadly, mistaken.

What…? Investigation…? I thought the reason for you and your partner coming here was to inform me of my wife’s death…?

Wait… (Detective Wilson) Why would you assume her death? (Long pause) Mr. Patterson…!

She was in the car with me… the day it happened… we were heading to our sacred meadow with a single over grown tree, which always hung above us with its long branches extended out as if it were comfortably embracing our anniversary celebration. Unfortunately, as you both can see we never made it there… (Short pause) So detective Wilson what do you want to know?

How about you start from the beginning of your relationship with Leah, I want to know everything that went on between you and your wife, EVERY… DETAIL!

It was hard letting in a bunch of strangers into my world filled with beautiful and precious moments I shared with her, moments that was never meant for the outside world to see. Yet I had to divulge everything to the detectives at the time in order to help find Leah, three years later and still an unsolved case… which for me…meant that all of my hope in seeing my wife alive would be short lived and slowly, but surely that horrid realization came to life.

Another day begins at the break of dawn with its rays slowly, bleeding through the sky… that’s how we used to always begin our day completely, mesmerized by its view as we sat together outside on the porch, sharing a sweet cup of coffee that brought more than just warmth to us from its steam, but rather love and closure.

I haven’t step foot on it since then, which really doesn’t make much sense when every day that I live, eat, breath, and sleep in our house… it’s only to merely, relive the dead memories of her. I guess that porch really weighs more on my heart than I had realized, given the fact that it hasn’t been touched in a while.

I’ve done my best over the years to maintain the up keep of this house… I know she wouldn’t have wanted it to go to ruins, much less being given away to someone else. Man…! She really fell in love the first moment she laid her eyes on the house.

I didn’t care for it at all in fact, I wanted the house that was sitting on the Cole sack. My brain was more focused on having little children running around in and out of the house, so I figured that buying a property on a Cole sack would have been the better choice since it only attracted young couples with kids.

There I go again talking as if she’s still here… alive no less, none of what I’m saying matters anymore. So why do I keep going as if any of my words has any relevance… (The doorbell rings) It has been so long since I’ve heard the bell ring, while its sound resonates through the entire house, indeed it has been long… too long perhaps. Yes… just like an alarm to ward off burglars except this is to invite the outsiders in with permission to grant entry. I grabbed the door knob firmly as I slowly, twisted it to crack open the front door so I can get just enough of a glimpse, to make out the identity of the person standing before me.

In the slightest glance through the cracked front door, I was able to instantly make out the individual’s appearance. Almost immediately, my eyes widened with shock and my bottom jaw dropped to the floor as if a ton of bricks was weighing it down. It has been so long since the last time I’ve seen and spoken with him, three years to be exact the same length of time that Leah has been missing.

“Well… long time no see detective Wilson”! “Yes it has been awhile since the last time we’ve seen each other Mr. Patterson… may I come in”?

Today, you will awaken to a world of truth and destruction… What will you do about it?

"The Call"

Chapter One(Part Three)

Wow! I wasn’t expecting your house to look so… well kept especially, after everything you’ve been through.

Well… I know its what she would have wanted, she fell in love with this house deeply which is why I never sold it, nor neglected the up keep.

Except for the front porch…

I beg your pardon…

The front porch… it doesn’t look like its been used in awhile… it definitely hasn’t been kept that’s for sure. Has it been difficult?... To except the cruel facts…

What are you talking about?

My vision of him slowly, started to become blurred and so distant as if he wasn’t there in the same room with me. However, his voice was crystal clear every word that uttered from his mouth pierced my ears like daggers.

What cruel facts?... Come on answer me… What cruel facts?

He sat there for a moment looking adrift in the midst of his menacing laughter aimed right at me for his own amusement, but at my expense.

None of what’s been happening has never resulted into a logical explanation , ever since Leah has been missing steadily all the way up to this very point.

It all feels as if I have been living in a dream that has no end. Even now in this mysterious moment shared with a strangely, behaved detective isn’t normal.

I knew from the moment I let him in that nothing seemed or felt rightly placed, even I didn’t feel nor respond normally. It was as if I instantly, became numb to all of my humanly senses it’s almost the feeling of being controlled by another entity.

As I became lost in my thoughts Wilson leaned over to me looking dead into my eyes with a sinister grin stretched from one side of his mouth to the other with his asinine enquiry…

Are you going to get that?

His demeanor quickly, transformed itself right before me. The man that I have not only let into my home, but rather into my life to find the most adulated piece to this shattered heart of mine… my wife Leah.

For a while, I had high hopes that this man who called himself a “detective” of the police force that fights and protects the innocent. A defender of the weak and the oppressed, but most importantly a raging voice that speaks for all who are buried in the depths of silence.

There’s no way that this individual such as he, could have been any of those things that I would expect from a police officer. Surely, I have been living with my eyes closed for the past few years just to now suddenly, catch what seems to be the true nature of this beings core.

His eyes are so deep and endless, yet they exude a fulminating chill that I have never seen in his expressions before. What is going on? It’s as if my whole world is spinning out of control, with all of these punctured holes left behind with unsolved questions still looming in the air.

For starters, why has the “supposed” detective Wilson been acting so strange? Why has he been giving me a malignant glare exactly as though, he desires nothing more than to eradicate me.

The phone isn’t going to answer itself you know…

I could no longer with stand the sound of his atrocious voice a companied by that menacing grin. All I wanted was to reach across that table and just knock the “life” out of him. However, I began to realize that I had no control over my body’s movements as it suddenly, started to motion on its own.

I stood from the sofa headed towards the back end of the living room to answer the phone. My vitality was covered in weakness, as I mustered every effort to stop myself from taking another step closer. It was clear that I had no strength left to resist the incantation that my body had succumbed to.

Today, you will awaken in a world of truth and destruction…

The sound of his voice changed… it had more of a mollifying tone to it this time which was in a “strange way” pleasantly disturbing, as he babbled on about a bunch of non sense.

My body steadily, continued to inch closer and closer towards the phone… the fear of being pulled by a force of gravity other than myself is daunting. I just want it to stop… I want everything stop… Before I could take another breath, I rotated my body around in the opposite direction from where I was standing.

He’s gone!… I murmured (in utter disbelief).

Detective Wilson was no longer sitting on the sofa, he just miraculously, vanished into thin air. The house was finally silent, free from the sound of that constant annoying ringing, but most of all, free from the voice of a man that was terrifyingly unfamiliar.

Nothing is as clear as it used to be, everything in and out of my life has become very bewildered. It is not only he (Detective Wilson) who has become estranged to me, but even this place that I, not long ago used to call home it too has become estranged.

The loud ringing from the phone returned with a vengeance, so much so, that without a choice to resist I was forced to answer. And when I answered the voice that oddly, approached me from behind instead of it coming from the phone sounded so much identically like Leah’s voice. I instantly, dropped the phone to the floor completely mortified… I knew that whatever she or “it” was, I knew that she wasn’t my wife.

Today you will awaken in a world of truth and destruction… what will you do about it? Huh…? Jack…! What will you do…? What can you do…? Desertion is out of the question.

She pierced her hand right through my chest like a sharp blade. There was blood everywhere splattered on the walls, the ceiling, and beneath me was a peddle of blood… my blood!

My surroundings in the room suddenly changed, as a mist that glowed blue unexpectedly crept its way in with a chill that penetrated every inch of my body inside and out.

I couldn’t move, the pain was unbearably excruciating to make even the slightest of motions. I was falling apart, my soul barely hanging on to the thin piece of thread known as “life” as I slowly began to disintegrate into nothingness.

Time has split us so far apart that when I gazed upon you (my dear, sweet leah…) you became disillusioned to me. However, it was the shimmer of light that was slowly, fading into the haze… a light that seemed to be reflecting off her neck somehow. I focused my vision closely on her, as I tried to get a clear view… my heart suddenly stopped beating. I knew now just who that dead corps of a woman was sitting in the distance before me.

There was no more doubts in my mind, the that light was shimmering in the faded distance, was the wedding ring I had bought for her. I remember that day, before I came home, I made a purchased on a diamond studded necklace and paired with it a ring that would not only symbolize our dying love and affection for one another, but rather our loyalty. I called out to her several times, repeating her name over and over again, but in the end all I got in return was a dead silence.

Leah wake up…! Please…! Leah…! (Jack screaming)

If I had only seen what was coming… If only I wasn’t so blind, trapt in my own misery… then maybe I could have saved you.

Could ever forgive me for killing you…?

"To be continued"...

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