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The Game

By Stevie Chandler All Rights Reserved ©

Mystery / Scifi

Chapter 1: Prologue

I scrolled the computer screen past one more image as the soft background of the TV echoed through the dark room, with only the light of the screens to give any visibility to my world. I sighed rubbing my tired raccoon eyes with an annoyed yawn. I’m not even tired yet. My eyes glared slightly off the dully lit screen across the messy desk. Empty soda cans and dirty bowls that I just haven’t gotten around to picking up, stacked, cluttering the silk wood. A clock written in headache inducing red intrigued my short attention for a moment, 3:28 AM.

I rolled back in my chair taking off my large headphones given to me last Christmas. There’s supposed to be the best in cancelling out noise. Well I don’t have to worry about that anyway. Is not like anyone will come into my room.

I stood from my chair walking sluggishly over to my bed. Another day gone and past, still nothing to show for it. I rubbed my temples in a circular motion to end the throbbing in my head. I need to stop these all-nighters.

I yawned laying across my red sheets staring up at my white ceiling with a tired sigh. Seems like these days are just on repeat. Nothing really changes, there’s nothing new or exciting. My attention turned to the TV. Late night crime and most wanted reports. Who done it and why? So many questions and reasons that don’t entirely make sense. I think they’re just crazy. To be honest, I think all people are crazy. Eventually everyone meets their snapping point. It’s all just a matter of time until all of our names are up on the late night wanted lists.

“Please be on the lookout for the wanted Unknown assailant, commonly called ‘The Cellphone Killer’. Teens between the ages of fifteen and eighteen are advised to be indoors before sundown. It is suggested not to leave the house if possible if you or a loved one is between these ages. If you hear anything please call local police. Do not approach, for he is considered armed and dangerous.”

I remember when The Cellphone Killer first started appearing on the news. It was two years ago, when five kids went missing all from around the same area. Three of their bodies were found a few months after with their cellphones in their hands. All with the same message, game over, typed across the screen. Since then, over thirty kids, all between the same ages, have disappeared from all over the country. Each teens’ cellphones also went missing, even if they didn’t have it with them. Sixteen bodies have been found with various wounds and bruises with almost no similarities. Nine of them were found on their twenty-first birthdays.

Sick. That’s what it is. I guess he figures they’re games. But, in a way it’s true. Life’s just a game. A game that we all need to learn how to play, or just die.

A creek echoed through the house. I closed my eyes pin pointing the source. I’ve lived in the same place all my life and after a while, you know every bump and crack. I think it’s coming from the garage door, if I’m not mistaken.

I stood from my bed, stretching my back with a groan. I guess Dad is finally home. It’s about time. I walked to my door lazily with a shuffle to my step. I walked down the darkened hallway to the stairway making my way down to the first floor of my home. I yawned again; it’s dawning on me just how tired I really am.

“Dad?” I called aloud making my way to the kitchen.

The house held an unsettling stillness. I began to awaken from my sleep deprived consciousness into a sense of worry. I carefully moved to the light switch on the wall to my left. My Fingers grazed the white switch flicking to an up position. Nothing happened. Ok, now I’m worried.

I pulled my cellphone from my pocket giving me a small path of light extending no more than two feet in front of me. My heart beat increased as I walked into the open living room. I scanned what I could, nothing. Maybe I’m over reacting?

I sighed with relief to see that the room was indeed empty. I’ve been playing too many horror games lately. I moved with a swift movement over to the garage door. I shined the light across the metal handle, worn over years of ins and outs. A smile reached my lips seeing that the door was still locked.

My shoulders de-tensed as I unlocked the door walking into the warm garage. I walked carefully through the clutter of boxes and decorations, which stack up until I’m forced to put them up on the roof. My target soon appeared in the dim blue light of my phone. The power box hung on the wall. I walked over moving several boxes making my way to the metal. I opened the door tracing my finger down to the label Kitchen. I switched the button from off to on. That’s weird. Why is it off?

I turned to walk back into the house only to freeze. My eyes widened as my mouth merely hung in disbelief.

“No…no th-this can’t be happening,” I whispered for only the two of us.

My heart beat became the only audible noise as I stood in total fear. I could feel the skin across my hands shaking against my own whim.

He just stood there in the darkness just out of sight but, I still knew he was there. Oh God, he’s here. Why him? Why me? He took a step forward only slightly causing me to jump against the wall. Why can’t Dad be home? I need him, now. God.

No, I’m not dying here. I’ll fight, I’ll live.

I ran with a tight face pass the man into the house. I turned quickly to close the door in an attempt to stop him. I pushed the door as hard as I could against him. The sound of wood chipping caught up with me. I looked down to see a crowbar against my living room wall. I pushed off the door running into my kitchen sliding against the tiled floor. I have the upper hand here. I know my house inside and out, light or dark. I will-

Owww…. Or not. My face met with the floor. I looked over to see a pair of worn out sneakers in the center of the hallway. Damn, how many times was I told to pick those up again? Doesn’t matter. I stood quickly catching eyes with him again. My breath felt heavy and rapid.

The man walked closer and closer to me. I began to back up with each of his steps. I will not die here. I can’t. There’s so many things I haven’t done yet.

“I’m over eighteen,” I lied with a cry.

He shook his head slowly seeing through my lie.

My back met the wall. I feel like I’m going to vomit. I can’t, I can’t be here. “Please don’t do this,” I begged.

He said nothing only continued walking in a slow and deadly manner. I could feel tears forming in my eyes. I can’t, I can’t, please don’t let this be it. I can’t let it be the end but, I don’t have a choice. He finally reached where I stood. My nails clawed into the cream paint of my hallway. My heart beat became a nauseating fast pace. As I squinted my eyes forcing out the gathered salt water that lay along my eyelashes.

Crack.

What was that? I gasped hitting the back of my head against the wall. My body slid down the wall with a hiss. I opened my eyes with a drowsiness. I met with his crowbar that now dripped onto the blue of my holed jeans.

Eyes gazed up onto the face of the killer with dizzy vision. A white flash filled my sight before black.


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