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Rated: E · Short Story · Dark · #2205120
A story I wrote for my friends. It's about a daydream that takes a dark turn.
Hey guys, I'm looking for some feedback on this short story I wrote (it's really, really short). I originally wrote it for my friends, so it kind of drops you in assuming you know what's going on. The setting is the right after the homecoming speeches ended, and VHS is my school. Chris, Devin, Cam, and Seth are all friends of mine. PJ is the homecoming host.

Edit: I probably should have mentioned this, but the italics are lyrics from a song my friends and I listen to. I'm singing them in my head.

I based this off a psychological condition I read about called 'maladaptive daydreaming.' It's really interesting, and if you like this story you should check it out!

Again, all feedback is appreciated!

All right then, with that out of the way...

Homecoming was finally, thankfully, done. Everyone stood up, clapping hard. I joined them, bored with the entire thing at this point. At least the speeches were over.
“All right everyone, all right everyone,” PJ walked up the stairs to the stage, his voice echoing through the sanctuary. The clapping died as students began to sit back down. “Give another round of applause for all our homecoming candidates, VHS!”
The clapping resumed, louder this time. “All right, all right, all right,” PJ laughed. “We’re gonna dismiss you guys at this time. So, seniors, you’re free to go…” The seniors surged out of their chairs, quickly congesting the narrow aisles. Behind PJ, there was a bustle of activity as other students and faculty began clearing the stage of its decorations. I sat back down in my chair. It would be a minute or two before I was dismissed.
I thought back to some of the messages the candidates delivered, picturing myself seated in the lunchroom, at my usual spot, everyone laughing at a joke Chris had just told. A song played in the background, presumably from my phone.
He put that hunger in your heart…
The seniors apparently were in no hurry to get out of the sanctuary.
He put that fire in your soul…
That’s okay. I was content to wait. Only a few more minutes.
His love is the reason…
I rejoined the lunch table in my mind. Devin had just roasted Chris hard. Everyone was dying laughing, including me.
To keep on believing...
PJ had stepped down from the stage, lost among the throng of people. The seniors had completely stopped up the aisles. No one was making any progress.
When you feel like giving up…
The people on the stage swarmed like ants, disassembling the setup with all of its chairs and balloon structures.
When you feel like giving in…
My thoughts flicked back to the lunch table. We all were still laughing, mainly because Cam had added on to what Devin said.
His love is the—
The world, the real one, dulled suddenly. I felt something like a vacuum on my thoughts, forcing me to stay in my made up daydream. I felt like I was underwater, the real world faded and strangely muffled.
Love is the— love is the—
The song skipped, reality flickering between the normal lunchroom and a foreign, darkened version.
I sat in my chair in the sanctuary, unable to draw myself fully out of the fantasy, but still vaguely aware of the world around me.
I was alone in a silent, dark, blue-purple tinted world.
“Guys?” I asked tentatively. No one was sitting by me. The lunchroom was empty. “Guys, this isn’t funny.”
I could barely see. All the lights were off in the lunchroom. The atmosphere was disturbingly Stranger Things-esque, with sinister darkness laying heavy on the room.
It was silent, too. Deathly silent.
Until there was the long, drawn out scraping of a chair being pushed back.
I stood up suddenly, blood rushing, heart pounding. “Hello…?” I peered into the blackness by the far microwave, where I thought the sound had originated from.
Squinting into the darkness, I thought I could faintly see a figure, blacker than the shadows around it, shifting in and out of focus. Fear pulsed through me, and a certainty that the figure was not human.
Its eyes blazed to life, perfect orbs of ghostly light, illuminating a figure made of pure undulating shadow, with spiky black hair pointing int all directions.
I stumbled backwards, tripping over my chair and others, barely catching myself before I hit the floor by grabbing the table. I straightened up, just in time to see more eyes blink on in the gloom, one after the other, revealing more of the shadow figures.
As one, they lurched towards me, arms outstretched.
“Juniors, you are free to go,” PJ jolted me to reality. I gasped, heart pounding, the world refilled with life and light.
I got unsteadily to my feet, going through the motions of walking out of the sanctuary.
“Well, that was boring,” Seth muttered to me as we slowly advanced up the aisle.
“Yeah,” I replied, thinking back to the strange turn my daydream took. “Boring…”
As I was jostled up the aisle, another image exploded into my mind, one of me, surrounded by the shadow figures in a stairwell, desperately trying to escape their cold, burning hands…
Someone knocked into me from the side. “Sorry,” they muttered.
“It’s fine,” I replied, thankful that they had saved me from returning. I shook my head slightly, trying to clear the mental fog, and let myself be herded out of the sanctuary.


© Copyright 2019 Ethan Carlile (allswal at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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