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Author: Scott (Page 1 of 12)

Daniel’s Gyroscope

“Thank you for coming,” he said, “I didn’t think you were going to.”

“I almost didn’t. You’ve been in a spiral and I was afraid of what you might do to yourself. You sounded really out of it on the phone. I’m worried about you.”

My words were kind but came out in icy whispers. I sounded distant and more heartless than I had when I practiced this in the car on the way here.

“See that’s just the thing,” he said, “I’m worried about you. I’m worried about you worrying about me. You want me to leave you alone but I don’t know how.”

I sighed, “what does that mean, Daniel? What does that even mean? You just stop. You just do what I’m asking you to and leave me alone. We had a good run and it was fun, but we’re wrong for each other and this ended in March. You need to move on.”

“But what I did to you…it’s torturing me.”

“I don’t need you to apologize. I just need to be away from you. What is so hard about that to understand? Frankly I only came here because the way that you were crying I was worried you might do something if I didn’t.”

“Something like what?”

I sighed long and hard deciding if I was going to sugar coat this for him or not, “something like kill yourself you fucking asshole.”

The words came out louder than I intended them to, reverberating off the warehouse walls as though we were standing in an empty room, but the room was far from empty. The lights were out but I could see his face clearly in the pale glow of the moonlight that filtered in through the high windows. His face, streaked with tears, pulsed between the pale clear moonlight and the blinking indicators of the LED lights on the machine behind me. The last time I was in this warehouse, that machine wasn’t here.

It was something new.

In the center of the room, cobbled together out of spare parts, stood a centrifuge like you might see at a carnival…this thing, three sets of concentric rings with a chair at the center was more industrial than the spinning ride that the carnie might strap you into. It looked like the product of one of the manic episodes that he was prone to. Wires trailed from it in three directions to three computer banks set apart from each other in a triangle with the centrifuge at the center. Not a centrifuge. What was this thing called?

The name came to me.

It’s called a gyroscope.

“Look, I’ve asked you to leave me alone, but you keep doing this. You keep pulling this bullshit and frankly, I know it’s because you don’t respect me and I keep putting up with it, I keep coming when you call and I keep worrying about you because I don’t respect myself.” I said, “it’s over Daniel. It’s been over for months and this is literally killing me inside. Why can’t you just leave me alone and let me move on?”

“That’s the whole point. That’s why I’ve brought you here. I respect you. I just can’t leave you alone because I don’t know how to do that… Or at least I didn’t. That’s why I built this. It’s for you.” He paused and licked his lips and walked toward the machine with his arms outstretched, presenting it. “It’s for us. It’s the solution.”

“This is fucking bullshit, I’m out of here.” I turned and started making my way to the door of the studio warehouse where Daniel made his art. He was never very good and had only sold a few pieces in the years that we were together.

“Wait! No!” He wined, “come back. I need to show you what it does.”

“I don’t care.” I said without looking over my shoulder.

I put my hand on the door handle and pulled. It didn’t budge.

“I had to! I had to! I knew you would leave before I could show you! I’m sorry!”

“Daniel. Unlock. This. Fucking. Door.” I said through gritted teeth. “Now!”

“Just let me show you…” he said, closer than I expected him to be. I could hear the rage of my blood pumping through my ears. He touched my shoulder and I flinched and ducked away from him.

“You want me to let you go. And to leave you alone. That’s what you said.”

Turning to face him, I pursed my lips together and didn’t reply. His green eyes shimmered with tears in the darkness.

“Remember I said I don’t know how to do that on my own?” He said with a bashful grin spreading across his face…a grin I found so charming once but now it only seems wicked and tortured.

He continued: “It’s called an aerotrim and I built it myself. They use them to train pilots. This one is different though because it’s quantum. A quantum aerotrim. I can’t leave you alone but I want to. I want to do like you’re asking me to, but I can’t. It’s too hard. So I built this…so I can go away. It’s going to send me to another dimension.”

Before I knew what I was doing, I’d begun laughing. I’d seen him manic before but this thing was going to send him to another dimension? It was held together with duct tape and thoughts and prayers. He’d begun moving toward one of the banks of computers and flipping switches. The circles of the machine lit up with a harsh white light and the room was slowly filled with the sound of humming.

“Please, come down from that thing and unlock this fucking door! I want to fucking go, Daniel.”

He was mounting the steps and taking a place in the seat. With the addition of the bright lights, I realized how dangerous this thing looked. The circles of the gyroscope were flecked with rust. The pilot’s chair was the passenger seat from his Toyota. I recognized the rip on the head rest. Between his legs, he’d mounted a joystick. He pressed the button at the top of it and the machine began spinning.

“I’m going now.” He said, taking the key from his shirt pocket and throwing it to me. It fell about 8 feet shy from where I stood and clattered to the floor, a noise barely heard against the whirring and whooshing of the machine which was growing louder and louder each moment.

“I’m not going to bother you again. I only wanted you to be here so you’d know. So you’d be the last person I saw before I went. I’m doing this for you. For us. So you can have peace, finally.” All of the rings were spinning now and finally the chair began to spin as well.

The rings of the gyroscope slowly built speed. The lights began to flicker as the machine accelerated. Then at the center, near the level of his heart, a ball of plasma began to slowly flicker into existence and pulse with electricity as it grew.

I was dumbfounded. Could this machine actually be capable of doing the thing he claimed? It was out of science fiction. Unheard of.

The machine picked up speed and he began to scream. Uncontrollable, horrified wails and as his shirt began to smoke, I realized he’d caught fire. He spun and did backflips belted to the chair from his Corolla as he slapped at the flames bursting from the level of his heart.

When the chair came loose it threw him violently to the left. The gyroscope was spinning so quickly that it broke apart and as it scattered itself in all directions I cowered away from it on the floor.

Daniel kept his word. He was gone…and he was everywhere.

His blood splattered every wall and I pulled one of his teeth out of my hair before I began to hear the screaming.

At first I thought it was the sound of Daniel’s horrified wails, still echoing on the warehouse walls.

But then I realized the screaming was my own.

The NoSleep Podcast!

Season pass members can listen now, but for everyone else, “A Letter To My Husband, Jack” is on the NoSleep Podcast episode (S14E03) this Sunday and I can’t wait for you all to hear it. It sounds great! I’m scratchy datchy with how it’s come out! It gives me the squiggles.

Diary

I

“The day I first saw you, I knew that my life was forever changed. It was love at first sight. Life was always so hard before that, and in that moment that I first saw your face, I knew that things were about to be different. It’s hard to explain. If I didn’t know you as well as I do now, I would never have admitted it at the time. It was like magnetism. I was drawn to you.”


We bought the house at a county auction, my husband and I. We saw potential there from the moment we passed by. It was old, falling apart. Abandoned for many years. On a hunch, I did a bit of research on it. The taxes hadn’t been paid in a long time. The county seized it and would be selling it off with a few others whose taxes were derelict on a Thursday morning. The weather predicted sun, but that didn’t happen often in winter. That Thursday, years ago now in December seems just like yesterday. The sky was overcast, looming, and gray. There was Frost on the ground but no snow and the sunshine that the weatherman promised sunshine never showed itself through the low-hanging clouds… But this was our first home and we were happy.

Read More

The Dreamers

They shone in the moonlight, scattered all directions on the sand. Glistening with the borrowed shine of distant stars.

Some came in their slippers. The majority forged their way through the howling dark in socks or the bare feet they rose with. Abandoning their beds in the quiet dead of after-midnight, the hordes of somnambulists shuffled through the drifts of New Mexican desert sand, painted black by dark. From every compass point, the masses shared one destination.

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Choice is an Illusion. Your Only Choice is to Accept That

I used to think reality was made up of choices. A hundred little choices made every day in a row, strung up like a necklace of pearls. You probably think reality is something like this too, each thing that you do could go a hundred different ways, and the only way it goes is the way that you choose for it to go…but that’s not how it works at all. That’s not how anything works. Reality is manipulative, just like people are and it’s manipulating all of us. It’s even manipulating you. You might not think so. Choices are only binary. Yes or no. True or false. There’s no great big gray areas like they tell you.

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Kariann Is Missing

I

A little over a week ago is when Kariann Rose Nathan went missing. In the photo they used, she’s holding a stuffed giraffe and smiling wide. A towheaded girl who’s hair is a vibrant yellow, almost white, cascading messily down her shoulders. Adults with teeth missing tend to smile with their lips pursed together but Kariann is beaming, the dark gap of a lost baby tooth in the bottom row on proud display in that way only children with missing teeth can do.

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Daddy Come Get Me

“Daddy come get me.”

It’s four words a parent never wants to hear. I’ve always been worried about these calls. Being her father never gets easier. I don’t even ask her what is wrong. I don’t need to because she’ll tell me what happened when I get there.

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Escaping Eden

I


“Hello!” I said as I approached the bench.

The man’s eyes shot up with a start looking up over the thing he held in his hand. “Are you talking to me?”  He asked. He looked tired and agitated despite the placid mask of emotionless empty the rest of his face conveyed. I felt my insides lurch, instantly regretting the interaction. I had to keep going so I kept smiling until he smiled back. There was no way he could be like all the rest. If he was, there was no hope. Finally, he did smile and I felt my stomach fall. His smile was exactly like the ones I’d left behind. Fake. False. I felt my heart racing a bit in my chest.

everything in this world is for show.
the worst part is there’s no way to know…

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The Raffle

There’s a Raffle that’s been going on in my town ever since I was a little boy. They started doing it in the 90’s. People seemed to have a lot of opinions about it. Everyone’s always said it was stupid and they hated it. I think some of those people are lying. People say we should get rid of The Raffle but they never do anything to actually change it. It’s all a bunch of talk and no action. The Raffle’s been going on so long I was numb to it for a long time but I’m starting to feel some way about it again. I started to read between the lines and understand what was actually happening in our city. If you live here too, just be glad you haven’t won yet.

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‘Jeffrey Dahmer’ is My Neighbor

My husband Daniel is the type that keeps to himself. He doesn’t talk to any of the neighbors whereas I’ve always been outgoing. Even as a kid, I liked to get to know people so I could understand them better. Understand what they’re feeling better. I can learn so much about people by striking up a conversation…occasionally, I’ll meet someone I’d be best off avoiding…

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