Darkness. Silence. A light mist forms from the ground and up in between the shapes of trees. Moonlight gives out a ray of light to a small mud ridden path surrounded by bushes and overhanging tree branches. Twigs snap. Heavy breathing is heard, panting desperately for air. Panic. A shadowy figure dashes from the distance down the path. The figure stops and leans against a tree, taking a much-needed breather. The figure is woman, her name is Jessica Marie Mackie, 28. She is a slim woman, a child is holding on to her as tight as he can, his name is Ricky James Mackie, 5. She is very much afraid for Ricky and herself, her hands trembling as she grips to the tree, looking back in fear from where she has just come from. She takes out a small crucifix on a golden chain from around her neck, with shaking hands and grips it tightly. She is exhausted. The sky starts to flash.
Lightning rips through the night sky, as the barren tree branches whisper and dance in the wind. A heavy rain beats down hard on the ground. Jessica runs past the reaching branches, a Ricky in her arms. Her breathing comes in panicked gasps. She steals time for a quick glance over one of her shoulders. “Help me! Please somebody…” she screams her pleas for someone out there that is willing to help her and her child, but not loud enough to reach civilization.
“Please God… please help us, we don’t want to die out here alone.” She whispers to herself, horrified she screams in terror, “Oh God… somebody please help us, he’s trying to kill us.” still there was not an answer to her plea for help, panic is taking over, there is something out there, but she couldn’t pin point which direction he was coming from anymore, the sounds in the woods.
The heavy rain, made it sound like he was coming from all directions, the only thing that she knew was he was trying to kill her and her child, she’s afraid she might run into him again she did her best to focus. Thunder blasts, the rain drenched woods, drowning out her pleas. The lightening lit up the woods enough for her to catch a glimpse of the shadow of the stranger with something in one hand moving quickly.
Off in the distance, a light shone through the storm and woods, the woman ran toward it. Hoping to make it before the man could reach her. So far, she was able to divert him, but she knew that would not last too long. The woman could see the shadowy outline of a house just in front of her, not much further, the rain made the ground mucky and slippery making it hard to get any true speed built up, being careful not to fall, yet trying to get away from the danger that lurked from behind her, her will to live kept her going. She was almost to the door of the grand house. Just a few more steps.
The Woman barges through a side door and into a kitchen. She throws it shut and locks it. The child begins to cry. A large knife on the counter. She grabs it. “Shh... It’s okay baby.” She looks out the window. A man bulls out of the trees. He holds something in his hands. A glint of steel. An AX. He passes a shovel jutting from the ground near a partially dug hole and heads straight for the house. The Woman turns. Flees with the child into the foyer and mounts the stairs. As she reaches the top she hears an explosion of wood and glass as the Man kicks in the kitchen door.
She makes it upstairs she finds a place to crouch in the corner as she comforts the child.
“Be quiet and wait for mommy... OK?” The child nods his head as she kisses him. Hugs him. She moves with stealth into the upstairs hallway and closes the bathroom door behind her. She tip-toes down the hall, screams, “Up here, asshole!” and runs noisily down into a one of the bedrooms where she ducks behind the door and brings the knife up. From where she hides she hears the man stalking her with heavy feet. On the stairs. Down the hallway. He bursts into the room. The Woman lets out a crazed scream and throws herself at him.
In the bathroom, the child kneels before the closed door. He stares through the crack under the door and into the hallway. Crashes come from other rooms in the hall. Footsteps move back and forth. Shoes pop into view and the child scurries to the far side of the bathroom. Cringes behind the tub. He sees the shadow of the Man standing outside the door. The handle turns slowly. Without warning the door flies open with a loud crash. In the kitchen stands a man at the sink. Scalding hot water pours out of the faucet. He stares at his hands, dirty and smeared with drying blood. Somewhere a clock chimes the half hour. He plunges them into the water and scrubs furiously. Lightning flashes outside as he dries his hands. He turns to the table and grabs up the long black object laying there. A shotgun. The Man moves towards the door. His body fills the frame until all is black. When he emerges on the other side, walking away, he is in an upstairs room. He sets the shotgun on the edge of a large wooden desk. Opens an ancient record player and drops the needle in place. Vinyl barks out, scratches and settles into an old fifties tune. The song is “We Belong Together” by Robert and Johnny.
The Man takes a seat behind the desk. Pulls out a large book from a drawer and begins to write something in it. With a deep throated roar, he clears the desktop in a fit of rage.
The sky is choked with dark clouds. Far below, a car motors past a final stop light and merges onto a large four lane highway. It leaves the sprawling metropolis in its wake. All is silent but the soft sound of the wind whipping past. Still far below, the car moves through the divided countryside on a modest two-lane. Dismal and gray, the weather hasn’t improved. The wind still whips past. Calm and soothing. The car appears closer as it scoots down a poorly paved country road. The occupants still remain hidden beneath the faded roof. A tunnel comes into view. A black mouth in the side of a small mountain. It swallows the car with a gentle asphalt hum.
The car sits at a crossroads. Turns left. Wheels whisper over loose dirt. It begins to rain and windshield wipers jump to life. The car approaches an old covered bridge and disappears inside. A soft thunder of old boards echo as the unseen car crosses over. The car pulls up in front and stops. Windshield wipers still beat back the rain as the engine dies. Everything is calm and quiet. Rain gently patters across the roof of the car.
Meanwhile inside of the house upstairs hallway, The Door stands ajar at the far end of the hall. Light spills out across the wooden floor. The song plays its last, replaced by the - swish - swish - swish - swish - of the records end. A grandfather clock ticks loudly nearby. Its hands slow down. Gears grind to a halt. Lightning washes over everything and grows in brilliance until all that is left is a blinding whiteness. A car door slams loudly and
Inside the car, Kevin wakes with a start, eyes blinking off sleep. He sits up and grabs his gauze wrapped head. Winces. Groans. “Oh, god...” He stares out the windshield at the wipers. They play a familiar tune on the wet glass, - swish - swish - swish - swish -. Stretching across the seat he turns them off. In the rearview mirror, he catches his reflection. With his hands, he inspects his face as if seeing it for the first time. Kevin looks at the driver’s seat. Empty. Into the back. Empty. With a frown, he opens the door.
Ancient Victorian rises before Kevin, eerie and monolithic. He pushes his way through the overgrown grass towards the porch. Looks around. “Hello?” The sun peeks through parting clouds, shedding light on the dreary landscape. Kevin fumbles through his jacket. Finds two Polaroid photos with names written on them. -- Of a woman with My Wife Jessica written at the bottom. -- Of a young boy with My Son Ricky written at the bottom. He smiles. Puts the photos back and pulls out two slender pill bottles. He studies them. Takes a pill from each. Pops them in his mouth and all of a sudden there was a loud BOOM, The blast seems to start in the house, spreads outward and ends in a crackle of thunder.
He jerks toward the source of the noise. The House. “What the...?” Mounting the stairs, he peers in through the front door. A dark shadow moves inside. He knocks. “Hello?” Tries the handle. It moves freely but the door doesn’t budge so he pushes harder. It cracks open slightly but instantly slams shut as if by someone on the other side.
“I see you. Open the door.” Nothing. He puts his shoulder into it. The door flies open with a BANG and Kevin sprawls into the foyer. A soft, white noise hum blankets the house. Furniture hides under moth eaten sheets like dirty ghosts frozen in time.
Kevin picks himself up. Eyes glide across the features of the house. He sniffs at the air and furrows his brow. He peers into the room on his left. A fireplace. Cold and lifeless. Something shuffles on the stairs. He looks up as a shadow merges with the deeper darkness of the second floor.
“Stop this. Right now,” The room falls into gloom as the sun goes back into hiding. Kevin mounts the stairs. A large grandfather clock leans against the wall. Kevin stands before it. Stares up into its lifeless face. The hands are frozen at 11:34. He flicks a light switch but nothing happens.
The hall is wide and divided by a deep red carpet runner that ends at the foot of a massive door. Several smaller closed doors line either side of the hallway. He creeps forward. Halts. Muted whispers are coming from behind this large door.
The door has a large brass doorknob with an elongated figure eight engraved on the face. Carved into the dark oak is a two-faced depiction of the Roman god Janus. He reaches out and tries the handle. Finding it locked, he pounds his fist against it.
“I know you’re in there... Open the door.” Something whimpers behind him. The eerie sound jerks him around and he follows it back the way he came.
“Hello?” He peers into a bathroom. Empty. “Where are you?”
“Down here.” A woman’s voice answered. Kevin moves to the top of the stairs and sees a woman standing in the foyer. A young boy looks in through the front door. It is Jessica and Ricky from the Polaroid photos.
Kevins eyes light up, “Who are you?”
“Kevin, it’s us.”
Her eyes glowed. He shakes his head. “Us who?”
Jessica grins and shakes her head, “Your wife and son.”
Kevin snatches the photos from his pocket. Studies the images. Letting out a loud sigh. “Jessica.” He rushes down the stairs into the foyer and throws his arms around her.
“Oh, thank god.” Kevin sits next to Jessica on the porch. An opened photo album in his lap. Ricky stands in the yard under a gray sky. He stares intently at the house.
“I thought I was having a nightmare.”
Jessica looks at him tilting her head to look at his face, “Why?”
“Because I woke up here. I knew where I was but not how I got here.” He rubs his bandaged temples. “Everything is foggy.”
“Because of the accident.”
Jessica shrugs her shoulders. “We were gone when it happened.”
“I don’t remember.”
Jessica lets out a brief sigh. “That’s not the only thing.”
“I don’t even recognize myself.”
“You have amnesia. Give it time.”
They sit there in uncomfortable silence as Jessica writes on something. “Here this will help you.” She holds up two sticky name tags. Which reads: HELLO, my name is: Jessica, and the other, HELLO, my name is: Ricky. “We’re the only ones here, remember that.” She peels off her name tag and sticks it on her shirt. “But just in case.” Kevin watches his son. Trying not to feel humiliated, he changes the subject.
“I had bad dreams about this place when I was his age.”
“I remember someone saying, ‘Stay away from that door. Evil lurks inside.’”
“Who would say something like that?”
Kevin shakes his head. “I can’t remember.”
“Had to be your grandpa. It was his house.”
“And that gave you nightmares?”
“No. Something else. Why won’t my brain work?” Banging his head with his palm.
“Now stop that. You know why... or will, I hope.”
Ricky moves across the lawn to get a new perspective on the house as Kevin changes the subject again.
“He’s acting strange.”
“Losing a father, the way he has will do that.”
Kevin looked to Jessica in shock. “He didn’t lose me.”
“No, but you’ve forgotten certain things. You’re a stranger to him.”
Kevin looks at her with guilty eyes and sighs heavily. “I know stuff.” For the first time, Kevin finally looks at the photo album. He traces the empty space between the photos with his finger. “I almost remember the photos, but the things that happened in between...” He shakes his head.
“They’re gone. When will those come back?”
“Soon. With a little help, of course.”
“I screwed up.”
A phone begins to ring inside the house. Quietly at first but builds in intensity. Kevin rubs his temples and rises from his chair. “I’ll get it.” At the door, he turns around. It has just begun to rain. Jessica bends next to Ricky in the yard. She whispers in his ear as they both stare at Kevin.
Kevin heads into the kitchen, a large table dominates the center of the room flanked by chairs. An old rotary phone hangs on the wall, ringing. Kevin steps in and answers. “Hello.” The phone spits out static and he jerks the phone away from his ear. Hears a voice saying something, but he can’t understand it.
“Get out... get out of my house.” A man’s voice say abruptly.
“Who is this?”
The line continues to crackle. The voice comes back yelling this time.
Kevin jumps. Begins to sway. Kevin becomes weak starts to shake, but he stands as strong as he could. “I don’t know who you think...”
The man’s voice cut in this time stronger than before, with more authority. “If you don’t... I’ll kill your family and then I’ll...” Kevin slams the phone into its cradle and stumbles into the table. Collapses into one of the chairs. Jessica started to head into the kitchen.
“So, who... Kevin!”
He glances at her as she enters. Jessica saw blood running out of his nose.
Kevin reaches a hand up and wipes away blood. He stares at it. “Not again.” He moves to the sink and cleans himself up.
“Who was on the phone?”
“I don’t know. Crank call maybe, I hope.”
“What did they say?”
He grabs a glass from the cabinet. Fills it with water. “Get out of my house.” Kevin drags the pill bottles out of his shirt pocket. Looks at them. Shakes his head and puts them back.
“What?” He turns to face her.
“Get out... or I’ll kill you.”