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2021.10.17 23:07 Sniper_boi9371 [XB1] H:legacy’s W: legacy offers
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2021.10.17 23:07 CR0UCHJR I live in Canada, is it worth underoiling/undercoating/krown rustproofing my 2015 Golf?
2021.10.17 23:07 timscream1 I want to brew a gluten free beer for my friend with CD, is this recipe going to work?
As the tittle says, one of my friend has CD and is kinda tired of alcohol free, low carb, gluten free beers (which is the only thing we find easily here). I was thinking that making an actual gluten free beer would cheer him up.
He does eat gluten free oat. As far as I know, gluten free oat is oat free from cross contamination (correct me if I am wrong!) So the idea is to use only malted oat, new hop bags (that never saw any bit of gluten), extensively cleaned equipment and to add Clarity-Ferm to chop down any bit of gluten that would have sneaked into the brew. Does that sound reasonable? I don't want him to get sick for many days for that one beer.
submitted by timscream1 to Homebrewing [link] [comments]
2021.10.17 23:07 Turpen_the_savior A couple of recent builds I haven’t had the chance to post!
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2021.10.17 23:07 Drag0nkn1ght24 Question. Is there other SCP's that are human like but have a get up like 049?
I'm wanting to know other SCP's like this cause 049 is the go to for something like a Halloween costume. Is there an SCP like 049 where they have a whole get up and uniform other than just being human or some sort of child with no unique costume/uniform on?
submitted by Drag0nkn1ght24 to SCP [link] [comments]
2021.10.17 23:07 000NemesisPrime000 do you think momoshiki was scared of ishiki?
2021.10.17 23:07 lowrancemapupdates Volvo map Updates +1-866-946-4895 Free Download 2021
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2021.10.17 23:07 k9006 these style influencer default outfits are getting ridiculous (swipe for my updated version)…
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2021.10.17 23:07 mattyromano1998 Looking for an help ID’ing some backyard shrooms?
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2021.10.17 23:07 Cropitekus Belmarsh prison - 16 October 2021 - Free Julian Assange!
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2021.10.17 23:07 dmitriya is vashj hardest boss of tbc?
2021.10.17 23:07 ApatheticEnthusiam Need reassurance. Listening to extreme hunger. Freaking out.
I'm trying to recover. I've started to respect my physical and mental hunger and I was aware of extreme hunger but it's hitting me for the first time today and it's scary. I'm eating everything that's on my mind (mostly junk) and I just keep wanting more food. I've eaten so many sweets today and I'm about to go pick up a pizza because I CAN'T STOP THINKING ABOUT PIZZA. I feel so unhealthy. I just needed to vent. Am I doing the right thing? Part of me says this is okay but I just feel like such an unhealthy slob and if I was a normal weight this wouldn't be okay behavior.
submitted by ApatheticEnthusiam to AnorexiaNervosa [link] [comments]
2021.10.17 23:07 Mrsoh1979 Not sure about this one, seems a bit far fetched?
2021.10.17 23:06 lickmastrr One more Holy Hill pic!
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2021.10.17 23:06 WatercressNo4542 What Raw Is Better
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2021.10.17 23:06 ToffiProto IT: Sadistic or Animalistic?
So, after seeing a few people argue that IT is an misunderstood Animal, and others arguing otherwise, i would like to compile the evidence for and against the argument.
Note: i will regard movie IT and book IT as two different characters because of their changes from personality. I also will be going on my knowledge of the book and movie, so if I get something wrong please correct me.
Please Note also that this is MY opinion and you are free to disagree. I am not the author and so this is only my interpretation
ALSO SPOILER FOR THE BOOK AND MOVIE
Evidence that IT is to be regarded like an animal:
IT chooses mostly animal forms
ITs not human and our rules don't apply to IT
The Spider being "pregnant" (debated on IT really was. i don't think this is an real argument however it was brought up as one)
Evidence that IT is to be regarded to be an sadist:
IT Kills for fun multiple times
IT tortures ITs victims and their families
IT is Presumably a Narcissist
IT uses people to do ITs dirty work
IT enjoys and actively laughs at ITs victims familys pain ....................................................................................
Verdict: Book IT is without question a sadist. ITs little regard for any life and ITs enjoyment in the pain of the relative's is evident enough. The fact that IT killed multiple people just for the fun of it doesn't help the argument.
Evidence that IT is to be regarded like an animal:
IT doesn't seem to kill for fun
ITs in general more animal like behavior
IT seems to kill IT's prey quickly
ITs lack of self control (drooling, growling...etc)
ITs uncanny "vibe" (Book IT has the same trait, but i think that's on purpose) .....................................................................................
Evidence that IT is to be regarded to be an sadist:
IT still uses Henry for it's dirty work
IT mocks Bill about Georgie's death
IT still seems to enjoy Bills pain evidenced by IT laughing in an IT chapter two scene
IT takes a child in front of Bill just to spite him ...................................................................................
Verdict: here it seems to be a mix between the two. Movie IT Shows Sadistic behavior, but then it could be argued that it's only against the losers club which, IT sees the losers club as a threat and that's why.
Here, IT seems to be more weary about eating than torturing, which could explain ITs animal more like behavior.
A mix between the two with leaning more towards animalistic .......................................................................................
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2021.10.17 23:06 Grayly Best team in the AFC. Top 8 AFC QB.
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2021.10.17 23:06 bandz_up I think I may have adrenal fatigue/hpa axis dysfunction
This began after a month of working 12 hour shift 6-7 days a week overnight, during this month I wasn't sleeping well during the day and abusing coffee during the night, I was sensitive to cold and peeing frequently, racing heart also had very bad hypotension/pots when standing, but I've had that for a few years. My gut was terrible also with food passing right through Everytime I ate I would need to rush to the bathroom. all of a sudden after a month of working these hours my body crashed, and all of my emotions are completely flat I can't feel anything at all. The low blood pressure and pots as well as racing heart is gone though weirdly also now I have bad constipation when I was suffering from the opposite before. Need some advice and comments would be appreciated thank you
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2021.10.17 23:06 Max_the-Bear Software for analysing chemical structures.
I was wondering if there egsists a piece of software that analyzes imported chemical compounds and can tell what kind of properties does it have? (Acid/Base , flammable , energetic , explosive) or will it be possible in 2050s ?
submitted by Max_the-Bear to chemistry [link] [comments]
2021.10.17 23:06 fairfaxas Saturday night out 😉⛺️Ulriken Bergen, Norway
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2021.10.17 23:06 endi1122 Goldie Locked - "Because you ate the forbidden food."
|submitted by endi1122 to customhearthstone [link] [comments]|
2021.10.17 23:06 loockzyee Which AIO is the best right now?
This quiestion has been propably asked thousands of times. Which AIO should I choose?
I have a 9900k OC@ 4.9Ghz and I'm cooling it with Dark rock pro 4 right now. For a while I've been thinking about switching to an AIO to keep the CPU cooler and move up to 5Ghz just because I want to. I've been thinking about Arctic freezer 360 but the rad is thick and I don't know if it will fit at the top. I have Cooler Master H500P mesh case, in specs it's listed that I have 55mm of clearance for top AIO and Arctic would be 63mm thick with fans, but I might be able to squeeze it in?
I've watched many "reviews" for AIOs and they are all kind of similar. In some cases I saw NZXTs kraken z73 or x73 beating arctic 360.
Which AIOs are best now?
submitted by loockzyee to buildapc [link] [comments]
2021.10.17 23:06 Vamoooss Les gars soyons solidaire envoyer moi des nudes de vos potes
2021.10.17 23:06 Cryptid-Echo I’m a Paranormal Investigator for the U.S. Government. Part 4: Post Traumatic Doldrums.
I’m A Paranormal Investigator for the U.S. Government.
Part 4: Post Traumatic Doldrums
It’s been a little while, hasn’t it? Shit, almost a year, in fact. After Alyssa’s little stunt at the bottom of the ocean floor, the Agency decided to put a lid on my publishable case files for the time being. That, and being the only survivor of a catastrophic exit from this dimension that tanked a submarine and an entire deep sea research facility kinda puts a damper on things.
To say I was put through the ringer was an understatement. What, you thought they’d pat me on the back and say “You tried your best, Echo!”? Pfft. The days afterwards sucked something fierce. I was put on administrative leave for the foreseeable future as was agency policy when an Agent had too much of an encounter at once. It was a bullshit rule considering the amount of things I’ve had to go through, but my Boss was pretty insistent. The ‘bullet through the head’ kind of insistent.
My Agency doesn’t necessarily allow us to just up and retire or ghost out. There is a specific process we have to go through before we can say we washed our hands of it, though the aftermath isn’t exactly pretty. Once my interrogati- uh, my debriefing, was completed, my administrative leave began. I was given a small apartment in a decently sized city under a million people, just enough for me to drive myself insane with boredom. As you hopefully have figured out by now, all names have been changed because instead of saying “redacted” all the time, I get to come up with funny monikers for the places I visit. That and some of you smooth brains flooded my messages saying how much you didn’t like hearing the word redacted.
I pulled my truck into the parking lot of the Shady Acres Apartment complex. It was decent enough on the outside, with white walls and balconies that middle aged women with 12 kids dumped cigarette ashes off of while standing there in pajamas. I shut the truck off and banged my head against the hard steering wheel, groaning in frustration at the current situation. The Boss had hand picked everything about my admin leave, and even this shit hole apartment was his doing, knowing that this would aggravate me far more than any true administrative discipline would.
I stepped out of the truck and slammed the door, the aging vehicle closing with the sound of steel on steel. I liked older vehicles. Simple, easy to work on, not as much stuff to break, and I could offload it pretty easily since some teenager with a mullet would pay double what it was worth. I slung a black backpack onto my back and reached into the bed to pull out my suitcase. Setting it on the rollers, I pulled it along and went inside.
The interior was obviously nothing like the Ritz. A few dingy chairs sat against the wall to my right, with questionable stains marking and discoloring them. Across from the chairs was a reception counter, complete with an actual receptionist behind it. Father back we’re two offices, for the property manager and whoever else had an office. I rested an arm on the counter and looked down to the woman , most likely one of the aforementioned balcony cigarette smokers. Her hair was done up in a beehive straight out of the 60’s, with gray hair peppering the obvious blond dye job. A few kilograms of makeup covered her face, so much so that when she smiled into her phone, the makeup stretched. My brows lifted slightly in surprise. The placard on the desk said “Barbara.”
However, they lowered once again to a normal position. “Hey. Names Anna, I’m here to sign for an apartment. It was set up a week ago.” I said in a pleasant enough voice. See? I could be nice if I wanted to. My brows lowered slightly when she outright ignored me. Not like, looked at me and said nothing, but acted like I wasn’t even there. “Hello? Helloooo.” I waved a hand hoping it would grab her attention. Maybe she was deaf or something.
She looked up at me, an eyebrow cocked in one of those “really?” looks that instantly got her on my bad side.
B: “I can hear you just fine kid.”
“Then say something earlier next time. Anna. Apartment. Keys. Need.”
She scowled, and was about to say something when a male voice shouted from one of the back offices. “BARB!”
She winced slightly. The voice sounded like a dog being beaten with an ashtray, even making me look for the source. I couldn’t see it, but whoever it was made that kind of sound from inside of a closed office. For a second we just paused, then Ol’ Barb started slapping things together. Literally. A paper here, a set of keys there, haphazardly tossed into a folder, placed on a binder and slammed onto the counter. “Good luck.” Barb wheezed out at me. I took them without a word and wandered into the apartment building and down the hall. I looked at the apartment number and sighed. 33. At least it wasn’t 666 or something like that.
I walked through the hall and passed the smell of skunk weed, vomit, old pizza and cigarettes. Signs on the wall said no smoking, but obviously no one followed that here. The elevator that looked before me had graffiti on it, and the door didn’t seem all the way closed. I pressed the yellowed button and stepped in when the door opened. It closed soon after hitting the third floor and rattled its way up, stopping with a ding, a groan and what I could swear were the stretching of a wire that was already to its limit. I stepped out into the hallway and made my way down the corridor to my room.
After unlocking the door and stepping in, I surveyed my surroundings. The place was surprisingly clean, and didn’t smell near as bad as the hallway. The apartment had a single bedroom with a living room and kitchen combo. The bathroom was right next to the bedroom door with a door of its own. A crucifix was nailed to the wall, and the Boss had provided some basic furniture and a TV. I locked the door, chucked my suitcase into the corner and fell back onto the bed. I probably should have put a black light on it, but honestly some things are better left unknown. I fell asleep soon after.
My awakening was unexpected. I looked over at the cheap alarm clock on the bedside. 1:13 AM. I blinked, then immediately froze. Getting woken up at specific times of the night was a huge red flag, and it usually came with a very unsettling feeling- there it was. The feeling crept over me, almost suffocating with the thickness of it. Holding my breath, I turned my head slowly to look up at the ceiling, only to be greeted by the face of an absolute monster just inches from mine. It was a bloody mass of flesh with few discernible features. A large, wide mouth with flat teeth was definitely what drew the eye first. It’s head was easily twice the size of mine, with a jaw that looked like it could open a couple of feet wide. The hollows where it’s eyes probably should have been looked like they were blown out with a shotgun, then filled with a strange bloody white concoction. It’s breath smelled terrible, which was unfortunate because it just kept breathing on me. Sitting there and breathing, waiting, breathing…
After I was sure I was about to pass out, I blinked and the creature was gone. Just gone, no sound or anything. I took the chance of sitting up and looked around at the dark bedroom, searching for any sign of forced entry. Of course there was none. Standing to my feet, I went into the bathroom and kicked on the light, immediately going to the sink and splashing water on my face. After I was done, I paused and looked up slowly at the very bottom edge of the mirror. It was red. Blood fucking red. I let my head fall a bit and banged it on the faucet in frustration. “God damn it.”
Immediately turning away from the mirror, I walked out of the bathroom and turned off the light and shut the door. My adrenaline was flooding at the moment despite my lack of sleep, and decided some brain killing Telly action was in order. I walked into the living area of the apartment, turning the crucifix right-side up as I passed it since that was invariably a requirement to my survival. I plopped onto the couch and pulled a blanket up around me- wait, I didn’t have a fucking blanket. “Fuck!” I balled it up, opened the window to the apartment and winged it out into the into the night air. Again I went and plopped onto the couch and now was able to get the TV to come on to some brainless show that soon lulled me to sleep.
I woke up again to the sun shining in the window. I got up and shut the curtains, then went over to set a pot of coffee. After a quick shower and getting dressed, I filled a cup with coffee and opened the binder to look inside of it. It was typical apartment shit, nothing in it about creatures, bloody mirrors, shit appearing that wasn’t mine or dipping crucifixes. I threw the binder out of the window and looked through the folder. Nothing. I grabbed the holster and 9mm from my bag and affixed it to the belt of my pants, then walked downstairs with coffee in hand.
Barb was sitting there in her weird lycra outfit and shitty hair. I walked up to the counter and slapped my hand loudly atop it, scaring the shit out of her and making her jump. She looked up at me and a look of horror came over her face, as if she was surprised and terrified.
“Shocked to see that I’m alive? Rules. Give em up.”
Barb hesitated. “N-no I gave them to you-“
I walked around the counter, grabbed her hair and wrenched her head backwards, forcing her to look up at the ceiling. My free hand pulled the pistol free and I jammed it under her chin.
“Give. Me. The. Fucking. Rules.”
I said through gritted teeth. I released her head and stepped back, waiting. With trembling hands she pulled out a piece of paper from behind her computer. It was printed, almost memo format, with the name and signature or the building manager on it. I snatched them from her hand and left the apartment, shoving the pistol into its holster and pulling my coat over it. I jumped in my truck and drove off.
I came out of the grocery store a little while later and tossed some bags of supplies in the back. Food, drinks, that kinda crap. As I sat in the truck, I pulled out the list of rules that Barb was nice enough to give me after a bit of persuasion. It read thusly:
Greetings, and welcome to Shady Acres Apartments. We are glad you chose us for your living needs…
(I skipped to the rules.)
Rule 1: Don’t leave your apartment after midnight.
Rule 2: Always lock your door, no matter what.
Rule 3: The crucifix is there for your protection. If at any point you see it turned upside down, turn it up again. Do not remove it.
Rule 4: If you see an item in your apartment that you know you didn’t have, get rid of it, or the owner will come looking for it. Please do not throw it out the window for the safety of passing pedestrians.
Rule 5: Do not enter the bathroom after 1 AM and turn on the light. If you accidentally do, don’t look in the mirror, or you will be inside of it.
Rule 6: This is rare. If you wake up at 1:13 AM and there is a creature standing over you, hold your breath and do not look away. If you do, it will eat you slowly.
Rule 7: If you hear someone knocking on your door between midnight at 6 AM, do not open it. Whatever is knocking isn’t human.
Rule 8: The basement is off-limits to all tenants for safety concerns.
Rule 9: If you answer the door before midnight and there is a tall man who says he has a delivery for you, accept the delivery. Invite him in and answer his questions truthfully.
Rule 10: The TV may start showing disturbing scenes and figures, and may even include your loved ones. Do not look away from it no matter what.
Rule 11: If you suddenly lose power in your apartment, hide quickly. Do not come out until the power comes back on.
Rule 12: If the crucifix is anywhere except for on the wall, leave your apartment and run as fast as you can out of the apartment building. Do not use the elevator.
This contract is binding until the end date specified. We hope you enjoy your stay!
I knew if, I fucking knew it! For the third time, I let my head drop and I banged it against the steering wheel a couple of times. I let out a scream of sheer frustration. The Boss knew what this place was! The worst part is that I was going to have to spend a whole fucking year here! Fuck! Double fuck!
I shifted into first and peeled out of the parking lot.
Back at the apartment, I walked past Barb without so much as a glance in her direction, and went back to my apartment, making sure to lock the door. I flipped the crucifix once again and set about making dinner. It was quick but filled me up, and I thought about the apartment building for a minute. Had the whole thing been a cover to try and get me killed? I didn’t think so. The Boss should have known that I’d gone through this before, so what was the deal? I turned the TV on for some background noise and continued my pondering.
I heard screams. Breaking bones, tearing flesh, moans. It was god awful. I wondered what would happen if I ignored it? My answer came in the form of a large gash on my left forearm. I cried out and turned to the TV, arm bleeding profusely over the little table I sat at. Keeping my eyes on the blood orgy, I reached around and pawed at the table top until my fingers closed on the remote. I pressed a button or three before finally hitting Power, and let out a breath I didn’t know I was holding when the screen went to black.
I tapped the code into my phone and hit a speed dial number, then put it on speaker while I rummaged through a small first aid kit I kept in my bag. The phone picked up while I was cleaning the cut on my arm.
“Hello?” A mild mannered voice came through the speaker.
“Boss. What the fuck is up with this apartment.”
B: “It’s an apartment that happens to have a Cryptid infestation. You’ve done this before, what’s the big deal?”
“I dunno. I was supposed to be on admin leave, so I figured I’d have a day or two of normalcy.”
B: “Admin leave is on my time, Echo. You’ve been suspended from the case regarding Dr. Lyndt, not from everything else.”
“Okay, so why not just take me off the case and shift me to another one instead of sending me in blind?”
B: “This is part of your evaluation, and the powers that be want your status to be offline. Not sure why, but that’s what it is.” He paused, as if wanting to say more. It didn’t last long before he continued. “You know the drill by now. Take care of whatever is causing the infestation. If you can’t, burn the place down.”
Click. He hung up, and I let my head dip to the table. He wasn’t going to give me anymore information, so I decided to at least start the investigation portion of my job, now that I was unofficially off of admin leave.
I walked around the building, starting from the top floor all the way down. Met a few people, most of them eager to ignore me and go on with their miserable lives. It was almost as if I radiated an aura of constant annoyance that made people want to stay away from me. Funnily enough I was fine with this prospect; when you are in a field that many don’t know of or understand, it’s hard to relate to others. Soldiers, healthcare workers and the like probably know what I’m talking about, relating to the general populace and all.
I didn’t go into the basement in accordance with the rules, as I really didn’t want to get mauled to death or something like that depending on what was in there. I chatted up Barb a little bit, trying to get an answer out of her as to what the deal was with everything going on. Obviously she wasn’t really a talker considering I had my gun pressed against her jaw earlier in the day, so I turned to leave.
“Kid. Come here.”
That voice from earlier, the dog and ashtray one, came out of the back office. I looked at the door as it swung inward, and sighed. I walked in and the door shut on its own.
The man stood to greet me. He was about my height, maybe 5’5 or so, but probably four times my weight. He wore a wifebeater that was stretched to its absolute limit, tucked into a pair of black pants. Suspenders sat on his shoulders and hooked onto the waist of his pants, and a tremendous gut poked out significantly farther than his chest. That wasn’t the draw to him though. His arms were absolutely gigantic, his hands of similar proportions. He stuck one out to shake my hand, and I accepted, watching his fingers dwarf mine. After our shake was done with, we both sat in unison.
“Names Tony. Now, I should probably call the cops for what ya did to Barb…” He had a mobster accent, one of those thick New York ones. It fit him. “…but honestly I don’t like cops of any kind. I prefer to take care of things myself, know what I mean? So I’ll make a deal with yous. Don’t fuck with my staff again, and I won’t break your fucking legs, capisce?”
With those arms, he looked like he could bend steel. Jesus. “Yeah.” I nodded. “Capisce.” I leaned back in my chair and crossed my legs for a moment. This guy was direct, and I liked it, so I decided to reciprocate. “I’ll stop fucking with your staff when you tell me what the hell is going on here, Tony.”
T: “Ah, them rules. Shits been happening for as long as I can remember. Just started up one day. A first it was small, ya know? TV started showin nasty stuff, lights would flicker, then people started dyin. So I spent a few nights in the rooms to figure stuff out. Wrote them rules and now things have been mostly settled. If that answers your question, then get outta here.”
I stood and turned for the door.
T: “What’s yer name kid?”
T: “I don’t buy it, but whatever. See you around Anna.”
A search of the exterior of the building revealed little to nothing besides weeds and cigarette butts. What a pain in the ass. I made my way back inside of the apartment complex and through the lobby, but stopped at the top of the stairs that lead down to the basement door. Tony was going inside, and shut the door as soon as he did. I heard the click of a lock and watched for a few moments. He wrote the rules, but was going in the basement? Huh. I checked my watch and left Tony and his basement to head back up to my own room. The day had gotten away from me and I needed to get back.
Standing outside of my apartment was a woman, who I would learn was in her mid 30’s but looked to be in her 50’s. She had upper back length dirty blonde hair, and when I say dirty I mean actually dirty, unbrushed and unkempt, like she had stayed miles away from a bottle of conditioner. Eyes were sunken in, bags under them, as if she hadn’t slept in months. Probably hadn’t. A little girl stood behind her, the spitting image of her mom, clad in a light blue dress. Unlike her mom, she was perfectly clean.
Mom was fumbling with some keys, and I looked over. Track marks ran up her arms, scar tissue had formed on the backs of her hands. I let out a silent sigh and went over, deftly taking the keys away from hands that no longer had fine motor control. I slid the key into the lock and opened the door for her. She looked up at me and just…stared, with hollow, dead eyes.
“T-thank you…” she voiced after a long, long pause. Her accent was French, and thick
I took the trail at the end of her sentence and just ran with it. “Anna. I’m across the hall from you.”
“Uh…Tracy…this is Marie.” She waved down to the little girl, who curtsied towards me. “Allo. Thank you for helping my mama.”
I nodded. She too had the same French accent, and it was absolutely endearing. I looked down to her for a moment and nodded. “Take care of your mom, k?”
She blinked. “I always do.”
That broke my heart, what was left of it, but outwardly I remained stoic. I looked at my watch. 9PM. “If you need anything, I’m across from you. Good night.”
“Bonne nuit.” She replied, and went inside after her mother, closing the door and locking it. I shook my head, unlocked my door and entered my apartment, locking it back. I turned the TV on and had just enough time to step away from the door when there was a knock at it. I hung my head for a second. Fuck.
I glanced at my watch, then opened the door. A man stood outside, clad in an old delivery man uniform. Though, I hesitate to call him a man since his face was decomposed, his flesh rotten and muscle exposed. His voice was demonic, otherworldly, and I sighed.
“Come in, take a seat.” I answered.
He did so. For being decomposed, he didn’t smell thankfully. He sat down in one of the two chairs surrounding my little round dining table. I figured this was going to be a long night, so I brewed two cups of coffee from a keurig and set one in front of him. He took it and held it in his hand.
“[Redacted] [Redacted] [Redacted]. This is your name?”
This shocked me to my very core. One thing all of these Reddit stories get right, and even a lot of works of fiction is the power of a Name. This is why I could count on one hand the amount of people who knew my first name, and fewer still who knew my full name, but this cryptid had rattled it off like it had been plastered on a damn billboard.
Without thinking I blurt out “Nope.”
“Be…honest…” He croaked out. I was about to snap back when a searing hot pain went through my chest, like he had grabbed my heart and gave it a nice form squeeze. My actual heart, not what remained of my messed up personality. I fell to the floor out of the chair, banging my head and tending my body into an arch, cries of pain the only thing I could manage.
“F-fuck, alright! That’s my name!!”
I managed to get out. Suddenly, the pain stopped. I was left on the floor panting, trying to get over the pain. Eventually I did so and pushed myself upwards, using the table for support.
“Rude.” I spat, and climbed into my chair, glaring daggers at him but knowing it would do no good.
He asked me a few questions, and indeed I answered truthfully, knowing the pain and possibly death that would come if I did not. His last question really sent me through a loop.
“Why do you hate humans so much, but try to save them from us?”
“That…that is an oddly specific question.” I held up my hands when he started to shift. “Alright alright. I don’t hate humans…they just don’t understand or get what really happens. To be honest, it’s as much an escape for me to save them from you.”
Of course. “Six years ago, our agency was bigger than we are now. We had more of a presence in the government meetings and such, but we were infiltrated and partially destroyed.”
“By who?” He asked, still holding his cup of coffee, not even trying to drink it. I hadn’t expected him to.
I groaned softly. “The FBI. Their agents had been recruited into our organization under the guise of cross training agents to better deal with cryptids. We already have better training than they do, but they’ve always been the larger organization, so it made sense at the time to get more of them on board. Shitty thing is, the FBI has a real problem with territory. As in, they believe everything that happens within the U.S. is their jurisdiction. We made it plainly clear that they would never be able to fully deal with the things we dealt with. After a while, a year or so, our Director at the time and theirs got into a spat concerning a joint operation. Instead of letting us call the shots, they decided to kill everything, including us.”
I paused and took a sip of my coffee, bile rising in my throat as I thought back to those days. I continued.
“The agents we were training turned on us, and it became the largest interagency conflict in history. After the dust settles, they had killed 18 of us, while we killed around the same number of them. This was all during an operation, mind you, and the cryptids involved had no problem taking advantage of the disarray and began feasting on the bodies, then making some of their own. After the cease-fire, we agreed to stay out of each other’s way. There’s more to it obviously, but that’s the gist of it.”
He seemed satisfied with the answer. The rest of his questions were simple but still deeply personal, and eventually he stood and left. The small package he delivered remained, and I set it on the counter next to my coffee pot. I turned the crucifix right side up, took a shower and went to bed.
I woke up at 1:13 AM again to the same creature. Same thing happened, and he eventually went away.
The next morning I slept in, not bothering to set an alarm, and reported in to the Boss, making sure to let him know what had happened. Honestly, the next couple of days were a blur. I took the liberty of going out and doing a few things during the day, only to return at night and make it inside to face the witching hours.
One night, I heard shouting from inside Tracy’s apartment, and made it near the door just in time to see Tony come out of it, with a man held under his arm.
“Figlio de puttana! Think you can come in here and mess with my tenants!? Eh!??” He paused when he saw me, and a grin spread over his face. “Ey, Anna! How’s the apartment treating you? You ain’t dead yet, good things!”
He was in a much more chipper mood today, probably from the guy under his arm, when I mean under his arm, I mean he was holding a skinny dude under it like a bag of potatoes. “Not bad besides the weird creatures and shit. Watcha got there?” I inclined my head towards his captured miscreant.
“Ah, some wise guy thinking he can sell drugs. Tracy don’t do that no more, you know? Gotta keep her on the up and up, poor thing. Specially since her little girl died a while back, ya know?”
I paused. “Wait, what? You mean Marie?”
An equal look of shock came over his face. “You know her? What you ain’t telling me, little Anna?” His visage began to look…dangerous. I held up a hand.
“Couple days ago I helped Tracy into her apartment. She had a little girl with her named Marie, but was decidedly not dead.”
He mused over this explanation. “Normally I’d call bullshit, but with this place? Marie was a cute little thing, used to help her mama a lot after rehab. She used ta come around and sweet talk that old suitcase Barb for some candy or some stuff. Died about 3 years ago during a police chase after being kidnapped.”
I nodded to him. “Sorry about that. I know what I saw though, Tony. She was real as day.”
He nodded. “Be good to her. If you see her again before midnight, tell her to visit old Tony, eh?”
I nodded again. “Will do.”
“Thanks kiddo. Now if you’ll excuse me, imma go and break this guys legs. You wanna come?”
I laughed, an actual, genuine laugh. “I’m good Tony. Have fun.”
“Suit yourself! Come on bastarda, we gonna go have a sit down, you an me.” He walked off like a kid who had just gotten some candy. I stepped into my apartment.
I must have a bad luck streak, because I turned the TV on and immediately it showed some nasty crap again. I turned it back off, flipped the crucifix once more and took a shower. As I stepped out and got dressed in something more bed time appropriate, I heard a knock at my door. I looked at my watch. 12:30 AM. For a moment I didn’t bother to care, but then something pulled at me. I walked over to the door and pressed my head against it. “Who is it.”
I paused, searching for the right words. “You aren’t human, are you Marie.”
“What happens if I open this door?”
A few seconds went by, like she was hesitating. “Then I will kill you.”
I couldn’t help the chill that went down my spine. Of course, Marie was already dead. I knew Tony wasn’t lying, but for some reason I had to ask.
“Why would you kill me if I opened the door?”
“Because she wants me to.”
I blinked. Never got this far with an apparition like this. “Who?”
She waited again before answering. “The lady who used to give me candy.”
Barb. That bitch was the cause of all of it. Had to be, all the pieces fit. Not wanting me to live by not giving me the rules, hating me for getting her in trouble with Tony, my earlier actions involving a pistol and her head. I shoulda doused her with holy water earlier.
“Sorry kiddo, I’m not going to let you in.”
“I understand, Anna. You may want to put some clothes on, you will be leaving soon. Good night.”
For wanting to murder me, she sure was polite. However, that sentence really stuck out in my head. I’d be leaving soon? What the fuck did that mean? Erring on the side of caution, I got dressed and packed up what I could, then laid back on my bed and fell asleep.
I woke up a little later, and looked at my clock. 1:13 AM. Fuck. Looking upwards, I saw a now familiar face staring down at me. Except now, it’s mouth was wide open. Something was different. It started to rise, as if about to get off of me again when I caught a piece of metal out of the corner of my eye. The crucifix. It moved.
An oppressive darkness began to seep into my apartment from the ceiling, covering it and beginning to slide down the walls. The creature above me hadn’t left…oh shit. I rolled out from under it just in time, for its head and body had shot downward and attempted to bite my head and shoulders clean off. It got a mouth full of mattress instead, and the shriek at losing its meal made me cover my ears. The darkness, like oil began crawling down the walls, and I barreled out of the apartment at a full sprint.
Down the hall I went, and remembering the rule, I didn’t wait for the elevator. The darkness was seeping into the building itself, and people began to run out of their apartments in terror. Some were not fast enough, and long arms tipped with long fingers began grabbing them, pulling them into the ever-widening abyss. Some were bitten by mouths that shot out from the ceiling, while smaller monsters began climbing into our world to tear the residents apart. The creature I personally had escaped from was hot on my heels, tossing residents into the abyss as it came for me.
I dodged, ducked, dipped, dived and dodged my way down the hall and into the staircase, down three flights of stairs in a few bounds. Screaming could be heard above me, and I knew there was nothing I could do. I burst out into the lobby and was about to run for the door when something collided with my skull and I fell to the ground in a daze.
Someone was dragging me into the basement by my feet. Asshole even let my head hit each step on the way down, and soon I could feel a wet spot on the back of my head. My body felt limp, drained. I was sat up against the wall and looked out to see a pair of legs in garish tights straight out of an 80’s workout video. Barb. She stood over me with a shit eating grin on her face.
“Aw, looks like you got a couple of bruises getting down here kiddo. Don’t worry, the three of us are gonna have some fun…”
“Wait…three of us?” I groaned out.
“Oh yes. I can’t wait to see what he’s going to do to an uppity little twat like you.”
As she said this, the same disturbing creature that had haunted me for days in the early hours of the morning clicked forward. I got a good look at it now. Two big arms ended in hands with long fingers, it’s torso was about six feet tall. The torso sat on a strange bulbous abdomen, like a spider, except it had four legs that ended in pointed tips I knew were probably ridiculously good at stabbing things.
“How did you…”
She cut me off. “Ah ah ah. Don’t you worry about that, sweetie.” She turned to the creature. “Go on hunnie, eat up.”
A roar came and I winced, waiting for the death that was soon to come.
“What!?” Barb yelled in obvious shock.
Tony. Good old Tony, fat Tony with the tree trunk arms. He blasted through the door like a cannon and speared the creature. No fear, no care, just did a football tackle that could have shattered cinder block. I felt bad because I knew Tony would be overpowered, but I couldn’t move as well right now and I had to find a way to burn this place down. Almost like a cliche, I looked over and saw a backup generator with a gas can next to it, and I began crawling over to it. I made it to the gas can and took the lid off, then pushed it over to spill the contents.
Barb’s knee rammed into my back when she jumped on me, causing my breath to immediately leave my body. She grabbed my hair and forced my face down into the floor. “I don’t know what she sees in you, but I am fucking done with it!”
She stopped. “Didn’t? Didn’t what? Come on sweetie, spit it out before I kill you.”
I turned over slowly. “You didn’t…take my gun…”
Her eyes widened as the pistol I held in my hand went off with a quick pull of the trigger, sending a 9mm straight into her brain. She went limp immediately and I rolled her off of me. I looked up to see how badly Tony was doing.
Remember when I said earlier that you won’t be out-muscling a cryptid? That didn’t apply in Tony’s case. To my complete shock the man had not only subdued the creature, but was currently smashing it into the ground with a sledgehammer. I laughed.
“What?” He looked back to me, confused.
“Lighter, match, torch, fire god dammit!”
He grinned and produced a lighter, and jogged over to me. He lit the fuel and for a second watched it go up instantly, then he tossed me over his shoulder and ran out of the basement.
We sat outside watching the building burn. The time said 6:20 AM. Tony shared a cigarette with me and we just existed for a little while.
“Hey. You probably know I’m not just a random person by now, right?”
He nodded, taking a drag off of his cigarette. “Yeah. Kinda figured from the beginning when yous took care of Barb like that.”
“You’re pretty handy. Wanna coke work for us?” I said as I handed a card over to him with my information on it.
He chuckled. “Nah. Don’t want none of that, but I’ll keep this in case I need yas.” He passed over his own card, and I pocketed it. He stood and stretched. “See ya ‘round, Echo. If’n ya need a place to stay, gimmi a call. I’ll have my mother cook ya the best meal you ever did have.”
He didn’t wait for me to respond, just left. When he did, I felt a presence next to me, and looked over to see Marie. It was after 6, so I assume I was safe. “Hey kid. You’re free now, what are you going to do?”
“Free?” She asked, puzzled.
“Yeah, the lady that gave you Candy, Barb, she is gone now.”
She shook her head. “She wasn’t the lady who gave me candy. Not the first one.”
I shot up from my supine position, and groaned as my body reacted negatively. “W-wait, what?”
She produced a small package. The same one the delivery man had given me. “She asked me to give this to you.” She handed it over.
I took it and looked down at it. “Who?” By the time I looked back up, Marie was gone. I opened the box and looked at what was inside. A skeleton key and a note. I opened the note and dropped everything upon reading it.
“I am always in control, Echo.”
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