2023/03/31 #DailyCreatedOOM

{This is for last week-sixth, when I was unable to post in time.}

The distant bark of a dog in the night somehow brought him wide awake with a beating heart, as it had never done before. The house was quiet but for the hum of the refrigerator, and other similar intermittent or constant sounds. Something had gone wrong, as when one’s mother has died, and you wake, feeling that horrible wound throughout and out of your sleep, but do not remember why at first. He got out of bed, went downstairs, went outside. There was little moon, little clouds, no wind. Going through the front door sounded like going from one room to another in the house.

Too much like. There was a sound that continued, even increased, when leaving the house, which should not have. The hum of the refrigerator, or one of the other sounds, a hushed level buzzing. It was not coming from his car, and there were no other cars in sight. The AC and the metre-box were on the other side of the house. It was coming from “out there”, not far off, nor in the sky.

Images that came to his mind, that his eyes now looked for: the silhouette of a man camouflaged against the dark patches all around; the thin, spreading limbs of some spidery being; a narrow pillar with a minute, sinister light.

What he saw he did not see, till it worked into him that it was not as it should be: a lighted area in the lawn where no light shone on it; rather it was like a door left open a crack, with a glimpse of scene and movement beyond. Foreshortened at that distance, he could discern nothing. The interminable buzzing came from there.

As he drew nearer, the hair of his skin became hot with tension; he shook off a fly with a start, but it was a drop of sweat. The buzzing was clearer, but still quiet; it made his inner ears itch. The thing he approached was a round hole in the lawn, cut as if with a knife, covered over with fluttering tatters of translucent membrane, as though something had torn through from that lighted space into this world. A rising of air through the hole kept the tatters in motion, and kept them hiding what was through the hole, where the moving light came as if from inside a building. A fleshy, raw, metallic smell touched him. He took another laboured and slow step forwards.

And he was lying in his bed, with light coming through the window into the bedroom where the lights were still off, like in late morning. He had not wakened, he had not slept: he had been walking on the indistinct grass, and now was lying here looking at his room. His heart was no longer beating fast. Something had gone wrong, and he still did not know what it was. He felt a pang go through him: if he had overslept, was he then late for work? But that could not pierce him with this fundamental degree of fear. He got out of bed, looked out the window: then in the full light he began to weep, to plead, to pray.

What did he see! What was outside the window!

Above the house, below the house, and in every direction, was empty white, infinite and blank as the number zero.

2023/03/31 #DailyCreatedOOM

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