Rob Does Words
Treating fiction poorly since 2019


The curtain flapped in a wind that wasn't there.

The curtain used to be blue, or, at the very least, it used to be a colour reminiscent of blue. Now it was a beige tatter of rags that hung over a boarded window. There was one doorway in the room, on the wall next to the one with the window with the ex-blue curtain. It had no door, nor was there much evidence there used to be one aside from what could have been screwholes a long time ago.

The floor was concrete, pitted and chipped from who knows how many years of who knows what things. Not that you could tell from looking, but it was also on a slight angle. Patches of some unknown stain covered the floor near one side of the room. Something scrabbled in the dust and darkness. It sounded big.

Darkness is a funny thing. It doesnt change anything, yet many people are completely and unimaginably disturbed by it. Myths and legends have survived where the hero of the story has to defeat the villain in darkness or suffer through some dark filled torture. All this is, of course, to say that the room was dark. Considering the state of it, it's no surprise to learn the lights, were there ever any, were out. It is, therefore, a safe assumption that the power itself was out.

With the lights out, anyone who entered the room was unable to see what remained of the various pieces of furniture placed haphazardly around the floor.

What used to be a dentists chair sat crooked and broken opposite the curtain. Its frame was bent and rusted. The padding of the upholstery was torn and degraded, bits of it torn out. Something ugly and black sat atop it, chewing something smaller yet just as ugly and black. Small noises were issuing from one of the creatures.

The room was in a house. It was one of many rooms in this house. This room in particular was on the ground floor. It was half of the entire floor, the other half being what was once a garage. There was no car in the garage. There was very little in the garage. Oil stains, rags, the sweet, familiar stench of kerosene. Again, there was no lights or, probably, power. The door had a large bulge in it, as if something large had been slammed against it from the outside. A number of ragged holes had been punctured through the door in the middle of the dent.

There were no longer any stairs in the house. Only the place where they used to be. The floor above had a few more rooms. The kitchen was drab and grey. Like the curtain below, if there had been colour here, it had faded long ago. A small amount of a reddish, water-like substance pooled on the floor at the sink. It rippled slightly in the non-existent breeze. A thick layer of dust covered almost everything.

The pipes in the kitchen rattled a familiar, yet not quite real tune. The noise echoed in the kitchen, but barely passed through into the other rooms.

There were three bedrooms upstairs. The carpet in each was worn down to the floorboards. Child size beds in two of the three rooms. The springs had collapsed, letting the mattresses fall to the floor to rot. Dressers and toys, long ago abandoned, littered the floors.

The master bedroom was dead and empty, in a continuation of the theme of the rest of the house. This carpet, however, had even been torn up and removed, rather than just worn and torn. A few nails sat amongst the dust on the floor as evidence of purpose. The window was the only one in the house that was unboarded. Bits of the frame had been broken away, pushed outward. On the ground underneath, a large dresser sat broken, its mirror shattered. Fresh blood caked it.

The taps in the bathroom were on. Dribbles of the reddish water tapped a strange not-beat from the bath, shower and basin. The unheard accompaniment to the song of the kitchen pipes.

Dead rooms in a dead house that sat on a dead street. Trees had withered away to nothing but rotten husks of what used to be wood. Grass had disappeared altogether and the dirt was a grey mess of nothing.

The weatherboard panels of every house that had them had all fallen off. Or had been pulled off. Blood and scratches covered much of what was left. There were no cars or vehicles of any kind in the streets.

Somewhere, some unknown distance away, something howled.

A wind that existed blew down the street and the deadest of the dead branches of the trees snapped off and landed in the dirt with a silent, grey puff.

A manhole cover lay slightly askew of the hole it was supposed to cover and something alive, probably, slithered its way through the opening. A noise, something horrific and dark, emanated from the hole moments later and water that wasnt water anymore splashed up on to the broken, unused road.

The entire neighbourhood was dead. There was no movement in any backyards. Almost every fence had either fallen over or had been ripped out of the ground. Any surface capable of holding anything held blood and fur and scratches. Bodyless noises were around every corner.

The shopping center, a few blocks west, had collapsed entirely in on itself. Something in the wreckage scritched along the concrete and aluminium looking for a meal, trying not to become one itself. A louder noise from the other end of the ruins forced its foraging to stop, then rush back the way it had come from. Some red glow blinked from behind the old air conditioning grate and then it was gone again.

The sky was black. Totally black. There were no stars, nor were there ever any. The splintered remains of what was moon hung almost precariously high in the sky, its deep red glow pulsated something that seemed to make the Earth itself shake in fear. Somewhere, in the middle distance, a roar, loud and forever shook the silence which only grew deeper in reply.

After a time, the silence came back to its normal state. The silence of whatever was left, trying to survive.

A light, far in the far distance. Yellow, and for only a moment as it flashed across the horizon, as bright as a star exploding. The roar challenged this light which did not back down. The roar retreated, as it always did from this light. And then it softened, and then it was quiet.

Morning had broken.