“Hey, I need you to get off of Netflix, we’re trying to log in.”
It wasn’t really an unusual text, definitely not the strangest I had been sent (yes, random citizen of Illinois I am referring to you and that somewhat disturbing picture you sent me of someone you evidently saw at Walmart… Typical Walmartian). And considering the fact that I had recently made a deal with my older brother that I could use his Netflix account as long as I logged out whenever they wanted to use it, the text didn’t seem strange at all.
But, as I gazed down at the pathetic flip phone in my hand (which also came from Walmart), a frown spread across my face and I furrowed my eyebrows. Slowly rising from where I was lying on my couch, I fixed my eyes on the dark screen of the tv and the red light glowing on the Wii console.
My eyes darted back down to my phone, reading the text again. Something was wrong here. Clearly, I wasn’t logged into Netflix. Not only were the tv and Wii off, but our wifi was still patchy, and at the moment completely gone.
Of course, how had I not noticed this before! I jumped up off of the couch, my phone falling with a small thud to the ground where it lay still illuminating the fateful text.
Without so much as glancing over my shoulder, I ran up the stairs from my basement to the upper level. As I reached the top step, I noticed the eerie silence that filled the house. All of the lights were off and I fumbled for a moment, trying to regain my senses in the darkness. I considered turning on some of the lights, but I decided against it and crept forward.
Snatching my keys from where they hung on a green paracord lanyard, I continued tiptoeing forward until I reached the front door. I disengaged the deadbolt and then slipped outside, not taking the time to lock the door again. Breaking into a run, I rushed down the sidewalk to the curb where my black 1987 Chevy Impala, a gift from my father, was parked.
Turning my key in the ignition, I started the car and then sped away from my house. I gripped the steering wheel tightly, my knuckles white from the tension. After I’d been driving for about ten minutes, I let out a heavy sigh and reached down to turn on my radio, the rock music that poured out relaxing my grips.
It was almost a two hour drive to the apartment where my brother was living while attending college. But, if I was going to make it in time, I would have to get there in no more than 1 hour, 47 minutes, and 23 seconds. I glanced at the digital clock, making a note of the time, and then pressed my foot on the gas a little harder.
When I finally pulled into the nearly empty parking lot, I looked down at the time again. I still had ten minutes to spare. Turning off the engine, I sat for a moment thinking through my plan again. Then, I opened my door and slid out of the car. Walking along the side and to the trunk, I opened it and considered the options there thoughtfully.
I traced the contents carefully with my fingertips, contemplating, before finally grabbing a pure silver knife, a rifle that shot rock salt, some silver bullets, and a little holy water just to be safe.
I walked briskly across the parking lot and up the stairs to the door of my brother’s apartment. Standing with my back against the wall to the right of the doorway, I cautiously turned my head to look in through the distorted glass window. There was a faint red glow coming from the back of the room, the source hidden behind the walls inside.
Reaching my hand out, I tested the knob and found it turned easily in my palm. Quietly easing the door open, I slipped inside without a sound. I held the rifle loaded with rock salt, and I could feel my knife securely held against my ankle. Slowly letting out a breath of air, I continued forward. I paused again when I reached the corner, bracing myself to face the demon or the avenging spirit that would surely be waiting just around it with my brother lying unconscious and most likely bleeding on the floor.
Silently counting to ten, I did my final preparations and then leapt out into the open. The red glow was overwhelming and my eyes struggled to see clearly, but I just managed to make out a looming, dark figure. It spun around, turning to face me, and I instantly pulled the trigger releasing the salt into it’s face. A loud, rage and pain filled screech filled the room and the figure began madly clawing at it’s face and fell to it’s knees.
As it dropped, the red glow became unobstructed and it was then that I noticed the large, white letters that stood out in the center of what I now saw was the flat screen of my brother’s tv. Shifting my attention, I saw that the figure who I now clearly recognized as my brother still lay crumpled on the floor rubbing his eyes that were surely full of salt.
Without a word, I hurried out of the apartment and back to my car.
And it was at this moment that I realized I had watched far too many episodes of Supernatural last night.