Tag Archives: static

Static


Another story about places where the borders are thin and things get through, Click on the arrow and let me tell you about it.

 

It didn’t occur to Zachary Mosko that anything was amiss when he awoke to the static and hiss. He felt around the bed for the remote and found it near Margaret’s pillow. She remained sound asleep. He pressed the power button, which shut down the LCD monitor and the cable box.

In the quiet of the darkened bedroom, after setting the remote on the nightstand and lying back down, he could still hear the static in his own mind. There had to be some sort of input for static to occur, a channel number without a channel. Zachary realized that what woke him up might not have been the lack of a cable program and the resulting hiss of static.

In the static was another sound: lip smacking was the description which came to mind; as if someone or something had just taken a taste, licked the flavor off its lips a couple of times. Casually. Repeatedly.

Zachary’s eyes were open, searching—guiding his other senses in that way. He was on his left side, facing away from Margaret, facing the closet. He rolled to his back so he could blindly assess the darkness more fully.

The red LED of the television didn’t light the room at all. It glowed like a single eye peering from the edge of the monitor. It remained unmoving, watching its prey in constant calculation. The rest of the creature to which the LED-eye might belong resolved in Zachary’s mind as muted shades of terror and teeth.

Zachary slowly and carefully propped himself up on his elbows, daring not to make a sound. He regretted the recent death of his alarm clock, the room’s lone nightlight. Mental note: go shopping tomorrow.

With a hand on the chain-pull, he focused on the part of the bedroom most likely to have a lurking presence. He prepared to shed light on the situation.

When he turned on the light, he followed the illumination as it reached walls and corners—a tsunami of light; finally casting shadows where there had only been murk, shades of gray replacing the deep darkness of space. His space.

There wasn’t anything to reveal. All threats disapparated under the illumination of truth. No foe could move faster than the speed of light; his retinal perception had a hard enough time just keeping up.

He turned the light back off before it woke Margaret. She might not understand his heebie-jeebies over a little static. Hell, he didn’t understand his heebie-jeebies. He grunted a little chuckle and paid a smirk into the dark.

Outside, the wind gusted up, sounding like the tide coming ashore. As that sound dissipated, another rose to replace it—a high pitched sound, electrical and faint. It was a sound which would prick the ears of a dog before human perception. But there it was, feeling like predatory tinnitus.

The red LED of the LCD monitor went out showing that it had been powered up and in the darkness of his bedroom he felt alone, utterly alone; left to deal with whatever was lurking in the darkness—something he knew was there even after confirming it wasn’t. He was still propped up on his elbows so he could see what happened next.

japan-static-black-mystery

Static began to show up on the screen. It began in black turned to a deep impenetrable gray as it washed in on the speakers. A few scattered bits of light, mere pixels really, scurried across the screen. More pixels vaguely made manifest a shape. As the head and shoulders of the static-thing resolved, the screen seemed to bow and flex, warp and ripple.

Two hands, then two arms reached out across Zachary Mosko’s dresser to pull the static-thing out as if drawing itself from a pool after a few laps. It yanked once and had its chest resting on the dresser. The hiss of its breathing, shallow yet rapid with its exertions, should have woken Margaret. But she remained unmoving and deeply asleep.

After the short rest, the static-thing took a great inhalation filled with electrical interference and launched itself at Zachary. It grabbed him by the legs and began drawing him back, back toward the LCD display.

Zachary reached to anchor himself in the room. One hand landed on the remote control and he frantically tried to turn off the television—turn off the terrorizing presence that couldn’t possibly exist.

Again, and again, and again—he stabbed at the power button.

When that didn’t do anything for him, he dropped the remote on the bed and grabbed at the footboard in a last ditch effort.

The electrical discharge grew louder as Zachary’s feet and legs passed through the surface of the LCD monitor. Pixels parted in fluid motion, engulfing Zachary and taking shape around him.

He inexplicably uttered no cry of help, too busy in the attempt of staying alive. He flailed in desperation as he was drawn in; denial written plainly on his face.

And then he was gone.

He had passed on to another where. A looking glass made by Samsung.

Margaret Mosko woke up then. She felt around on Zachary’s side of the bed and came up with the remote. She used it to turn off the television which was reduced to a light static anyway. She figured Zachary had gone for a snack when the cable went out.

Irony in that. Think about it.

Later, the police didn’t believe her. The spouse is always the first suspect.

But the surveillance video was pretty clear.

So now you know what happened to Zachary Mosko.

I understand it’s going around.

Convolution

First; I’d like to tell my subscribers to visit FlashTold to listen to the audiofeed. The email link only provides for a download. I’m not sure about making the whole shebang clikable in a subscriber email.

For the rest: let me read this circular story to you by clicking on the arrow below. I think you’ll like it…

Dennison woke with a hitching inhalation of air and peeled himself out of the corner of the door pillar and the seat. He noticed the garish combination of blood red, pale yellow and black in the flannel shirt Owen, the driver, was wearing.

Owen looked at him in the rearview mirror and said, “Welcome back sleepy head.”

The radio was playing softly, an old Dave Matthews tune titled Crash Into Me. Chris had shotgun and he shifted his body around to look back. Nodding in time with the music, he said, “Wish I could just drop off like that.”

Dennison straightened and then arched his back, all while taking in the passing scenery. Everything was green but had a look about it as though tired of growing and maybe ready for the next part of the cycle. It was mid-September. Occasional outcrops of granite could be seen, just as they had been left by passing glaciers a thousand lifetimes ago—or maybe a thousand thousand. The song on the radio started giving in to static as it so often does on road-trips though New Hampshire.

Owen said to Chris, “See if you can find something good on that thing, will ya?”

Chris nodded again, began pressing the search-up button. What he got for his effort was mostly static, with vague hints of distant radio stations mixed in. Then, clear as a new CD, one station came in with the opening riffs of an AC-DC tune, Highway To Hell. Cranking the volume, Chris said, “Awesome.”

Dennison put his hands over his ears and began rocking in place. “No, no, no, no, NO! Not again! I can’t do it again!”

Chris looked back at Dennison in alarm. He turned the volume back down some, and asked, “What’s the matter, Den? You all right there buddy?”

Owen’s eyes darted between the windshield and the rearview.

Dennison said, “It’s the same dream every time and I can’t do it again. There has to be a reason for all this.”

On the radio, Brian Johnson rasped about not needing a reason because there’s nothin’ he’d rather do.

Dennison continued, “It’s the same dream over and over. Don’t you see? There has to be a way to stop.”

Owen said, “It’s okay Den, you’re awake now.”

Dennison said, “But I’m not. That’s what I’m trying to tell you. THIS is the dream. Right now. Right here. And you guys are in it.”

Chris said, “Awe, come on Den. That doesn’t make sense. You saying I’m dreaming you too?”

“No, you only exist in my dream. I made you up. I don’t know where you came from originally, probably someone I met at the gym.”

Chris gave a furtive glance at Owen who was listening but saving his opinion for the moment.

Dennison said, “Take this car. This is the car my dad owned just about the time I hit ten. That has to be why I’m always in the back seat.”

Owen said, “Not to burst your bubble there, Den, but this ain’t your dad’s car. I just bought it a month ago. It might be used, but I’m sure it wasn’t used by your dad.”

“You’re not getting it. Everything in this dream is from parts of my life. It’s all cut and paste.”

“Look,” Owen said while Dennison lip-synced, “We’re just going up to Franconia Notch, take in the sights, check out Flume Gorge, maybe see if there’s anything left of the Old Man on the Mountain.”

Chris cut in by saying, “Gawd, how do you do that?”

Owen said, “What?”

Chris said, “He lip-synced everything you just said. Perfectly. Like it was coming out of his mouth.”

Owen gave Chris a worried look and Dennison said, “That’s just it, see, I’ve done all this before. I know what you will say, what you’ll do, and how it’ll all end.”

Chris said, “Yeah? How will it end?”

“We crash. I die—or maybe we all die. Then I wake up in this dream to start over again. So I don’t die, or— I’m caught in the middle of a dream and a nightmare.”

Chris said, “What do you mean ‘we crash.’ Crash into what?”

“A truck barrels through an intersection and rips this car in two.”

Owen said, “I think I can avoid a truck. It’s not like I’m drunk. Aye?”

Chris smiled at that.

Dennison looked dreamily out the side window and said, “There’s no stop sign to see because a tree limb hangs in front of it. We’re doing, like fifty-five, sixty. The truck is really screwing along—more like eighty. I look up just in time to see the driver’s face and we almost make it through the intersection. Time slows, stretches, and niblets of glass fly at my face. At the very moment the cool chrome grill touches the skin on my face, I wake up here, in the back seat again.”

 “Jeez,” Owen said. “Sounds like you’ve done this before.”

Dennison laughs a little maniacal laugh. “Yeah,” he says, drawing it out to a whisper while nodding. “Last time, the trucker was my eighth grade English teacher. Little things like that change.”

Dennison’s eyes get big as saucer plates. “This is it. STOP. Not again, please?”

Chris and Owen look at each other as they pass through the intersection and miss the stop sign just as a truck smashes into the car. Dennison notices the driver is the local pastor. The back of the car crumples, glass flies, and just as the chrome grill touches his face—

Dennison woke with a hitching inhalation of air and peeled himself out of the corner of the door pillar and the seat. He noticed the garish combination of blood red, pale yellow and black in the flannel shirt Owen, the driver, was wearing.

Owen looked at him in the rearview mirror and said, “Welcome back sleepy head.”

The radio was playing softly, an old Dave Matthews tune titled Crash Into Me…

******

That’s the story. Feel free to leave a comment and let me know what you think; and thanks for stopping by!