Prompt: An angry knock on your door has you peek out of the mail slot to see an unfamiliar person. “I am sorry, do I know you?” They stare at you angrily. “How many more times are they going to wipe your mind?”
“What do you mean they wiped my mind?” I asked, still hunched over and staring through the mail slot at a pair of oddly familiar teal eyes.
“Ugh, just— just can you open the damn door? My back’s hurting like a bitch,” the man spat.
I straightened, and opened the door just a sliver, keeping the chain lock in place. The man stood, hissing, rubbing his lower back. He wore a black overcoat with a stained white t-shirt underneath, and a pair of faded blue jeans. His ruffled hair was dirty blonde.
“Thanks,” he said and tried to open the door more to find it still locked. “C’mon, seriously? We’ve known each other for this long and you still can’t remember who I am?”
My grip on the doorknob tightened. “Years? I’ve never seen you before.”
“Ah shit, they musta’ got you good this time,” he scratched his stubbled cheek, “it’s me, Chuck. We go way back, elementary school and all that. We were in Mrs. Jowls class together, English, yeah? Double-dated for prom? Joined that shit-show of a ‘club’ after high school, the fuckers who wiped your memory.”
Images flashed through my mind. Mrs. Jowls with her beaked nose, the green chalkboard written on by someone he knew… Prom, his father’s suit because they couldn’t afford to rent one, his date’s bright blue dress, her friend’s bright pink and her date with a white bow tie… The club… The headquarters out in the abandoned warehouse on the outskirts of town… The rusted walls, the coppery smell when they light fires… The black robes and golden embroiled symbols…
“Chuck?” I whispered.
“Yep, there you go… Comin’ all back to you now, isn’t it?” He grinned, revealing yellowed teeth.
I shook my head as I undid the chain lock and allowed Chuck in. I stepped away and sunk into the couch, as he peeked outside, shut the door, and locked it. “Got anything to drink?” he asked, striding towards the kitchen.
I waved my hand towards the fridge. “Yeah, juice, soda, iced coffee…”
I heard him rummage in the fridge, then he came back with a bottle of orange juice.
“So,” he said before taking a drink, “remember anything else?”
The absolute darkness in the warehouse… The machine in the center, lit by an overhead light… People sitting in it… Wires and pads attached to their temples, their chest, some on their groin… Screaming, blood, ghost-like tendrils seeping from eyes…
I shook my head. “Some, but not everything…”
He sat on the chair to the side, set the drink down next to the stack of coasters on the coffee table. “Yeah, that happens, bastards just keep doin’ it.”
“Using our fucking brains,” he poked his temple, “to summon some asshole from who-cares-ville in space.”
“To do… What?”
He wiped his lips after taking a drink. “I don’t fucking know. Destroy the planet? Make their little dicks bigger? Does it matter, really?”
I rubbed the crook of my nose. “I guess, it doesn’t.”
“But you better go get something to eat there bud,” Chuck said, finishing off his OJ.
“Because they keep fuckin’ with us, the ones who got out of that shit-fuck club. Drugging us in our food, taking us back to that shit-hole warehouse, using our minds and wiping them in the process. Every time it happens, little by fucking little, it’s likely we won’t remember anything anymore. I use to be able to remember what my first girlfriend’s tits looked like, what they felt like, but now— fuck, nothing, nada… I can’t even remember her damn name or face. Shit’s fucked, really.”
“But… but—” I closed my eyes and shook my head. “What’s that have to do with me?”
“Jesus Christ, they really did a number on you. It has to do you with your dumbass because we’re the last two who even remembers the fucking warehouse, the club, all of that shit. They got enough of our mind energy. The thing they have been trying to summon is on its fucking way, and we’re the only two who can actually do something about it.”
It felt like someone had step on my chest. I sat back into the couch, breathed out. I knew what he was going to say before he did.
“So we’re going to go fucking stop them, now go get some food in your tummy, drink some of that horrible vanilla ice coffee I saw in the fridge, and let’s go. The cars running out back, filled to the teeth with shit I got from some pyro-junkie yesterday.” I didn’t hear him get up, but I felt him slap my knee. “C’mon, get up, we don’t got fucking time daydreaming.”
I opened my eyes and inhaled deeply, then nodded. “Fine, I’ll come, but don’t slap me again.”
He grinned. “Deal, now let’s go burn up some shit.”
Read my previous prompt, “The Cure of the Moon.”
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