Hello. This thing happened to me a few months ago; I just need to share it with somebody.
Me: I have the artistic skils of a newborn. I can get ideas but the idea can't be brought to life so I won't be doing any painting although some of the pricey artwork out there just looks like someone randomly threw paint on a canvas. I could do that.
It all started at my friend’s party. He's an artist who rented out a loft in the industrial part of town. If you can picture what a place like Detroit looked like in the 1920s – that’s what this area looks like. A bunch of old turn-of-the-century factories crammed into ten blocks.
Me: On the bright side I'm guessing abandoned tends to be less noisy than not abandoned although there might be creepy crawlies and who knows what.
Most of them are abandoned.
Me: I think I party in my sleep since I keep waking up with a pain in my left hand. Weirdly it never happens to the right. Hey I thought the bad hand was supposed to have bad things happen to it and not the hand I write with. When Dean gets shot it is always the left arm because he's right handed. Anyhoo my party today will hopefully include me finding that hair dye and finally dying my hair so I can stop wearing a hat. Don't worry I have washed it during the two plus years I've been wearing it when going out.
So I partied a little too hard that night and decided to crash on a couch at the loft. I woke up at around 4 am, the sun wasn’t out yet but you could still make things out in the dim blue light. I went to the bathroom, carefully tiptoeing around the people that were passed out on the floor. As I was taking a piss I tiptoed to look out the bathroom window and I saw the panorama of deserted urban decay.
I remembered how much I liked places like this. It was so dark and devoid of life, and strangely serene.
Me: I'm thinking about getting an adorable couch that doubles as a bed. I want to use it for a reading nook. Screw a breakfast nook I want a nook I'll actually use.
So I went back to the couch and tried to fall asleep. After 45 minutes of staring at the ceiling I decided I didn’t want to be there any longer, so I swallowed my pride and decided to wake my girlfriend up to beg her for a ride, since walking around the vacant streets at this time was not an option. Being an awesome girlfriend, she was totally cool with it, and told me she would be there in about a half-hour and that she would give me a call when she was outside. My phone died ten minutes later so I decide I would sit by the window and watch for her car. I sat there for a while and my eyes started getting heavy and I began to doze off.
Me: Once again I heard weird noises coming from behind me while I was in bed and I couldn't blame it on wind causing the tree branches to scrape against the side of the house. Also now that I think about it the sound almost seemed like it was coming from below me and not behind me. I really shouldn't think about it too much because paranoia isn't a fun thing.
A crashing noise outside woke me up. It wasn’t loud, but just enough to snap me into reality. I looked out the window and scanned the area, but didn’t see anything. Across the street from the loft near a mountain of garbage bags and one of those enormous dumpsters I see a computer and a monitor smashed against the floor that hadn’t been there before.
Me: I think I'mg going to start dumpster diving but I need a stool becuase it isn't so easy to get into one. I'm not a flipping Sim who find dumpster diving very easy not to mention very profitable. With my luck I'd end up landing in a bunch of icky food or land on top of a body. They should make a device that's like a metal detector but for a dumpster so you know what you're getting before you dive in.
When my girlfriend arrived I went downstairs and greeted her. Just as I was about to get in the car, I remembered a friend of mine who had blown out his power supply. So I decided to walk over to the dumpster and see what I could salvage. The monitor was worthless, but the tower seemed to have suffered almost no damage, so I put it in the trunk and we drove off.
Me: Eeww but to each their own. Why didn't he do a penis search? He could get a nice penis necklace on Ebay. There's even one with wings which is so bizarre. I did a Story Time about it. Just type Flying Penis in the search box and you'll find it if you're interested.
About a week had passed and I had completely forgotten about the tower until my girlfriend called to let me know that it was still in the trunk and that she wanted it out. That night I brought it home. Before I took it apart I decided to hook it up to my monitor to see if it still ran, and to my surprise it did. It ran Windows XP and it looked like it had been wiped clean. I decided to do searches for words like “tits” and “pussy” in hopes of finding some secret stash full of weird deviant porn the previous owner had forgotten about. Morbid curiosity, I guess. Search came up nothing. Searched for picture Files – nothing. Then I searched for movies and one file came up. It was an .avi inside a folder titled “barbie” hidden in the WINDOWS/system32 directory.
So I played it, now this is where it gets disturbing.
Me: Some random video from a YouTuber perhaps.
The movie was about an hour long, and was made up of what seemed like raw exported footage. The footage was of this woman sitting on a chair and talking against a white backdrop. I skipped through most of movie and it was all the same continuous shot. Then I decided to sit though the footage to find out what she was talking about. Fifteen seconds into the footage the audio goes completely bad and her voice is drowned in harsh static/background noise. I couldn’t make out a thing.
Me: This guy is computery savvy. I'm so the opposite. I'm lucky I know how to type. I blame that bitch teacher in eighth grade who caused me to transfer out of computer class and into the utterly useless wood shop or maybe metal shop. I'm not sure which. I just sat there and did nothing while the teacher always came in singing, "Rolling, rolling get the doggies rolling." Yes he was a super fun teacher. The computer teacher in seventh grade was much better but he stopped being a teacher and started working for the school district the following year. The dumb ass teacher I got stuck with didn't like when you asked questions. Of course I need to ask a question when I don't understand the fucking directions hence me going to another class. Thanks bitch for fucking up my computer skills.
So I imported the footage into final cut and tried to mess with the levels to isolate her voice. It helped a little, but I still couldn’t hear what she was saying. I was intrigued now, and I began to really pay attention to her face and body language. It seems that she's being asked some kind of questions, because she stops at times to listen, and then continues talking.
Me: I'm not happy with my skin or at least my hands especially when I'm having a fun flare up. Who doesn't love have hands that look like you have leprosy?
About 15 minutes into the footage, her face begins to redden and contort as if the questions are bothering her... But she continues to answer them anyway. Shortly after she begins to cry. She sobs hysterically for the duration of the film. One of the few words I could lip-read was “skin”. She repeats this word many times throughout the footage and at one point she even pulls at the skin from her arm and mouths the word. She seems to be unhappy with her skin.
There is much more I have to get off my chest, but it is getting late and I can't go on. I will share the rest tomorrow. God save my soul.
It kept on building and building, and about 40 minutes in she's crying so hard she can barely look at the camera. She stops talking at this point and the rest of the footage is just her crying with her head down. Oddly enough she doesn’t get up or move, the screen just fades to black.
I was fucking dumbfounded.
I played the whole thing through many times that night, trying to find inflections and nuances in her movement that would reveal anything else about what was going on. I felt so dissatisfied, I wanted to know more. That’s when I noticed that there was about 10 more minutes left on the timeline after the screen went black, and about 2 minutes in there was more footage.
Me: That just made me think of Fire Walk With Me. I think that's the name of the Twin Peaks movie or it has Twin Peaks in front of the Fire Walk With Me. It makes me think of Ronette stumbling her way across the bridge and yes I'm not sure about the spelling but don't feel like checking.
The footage was extremely shaky, almost unwatchable, and depicted a pair of legs walking along train tracks. my guess is that camera was accidentally left on as it was being carried somewhere. The person in this footage walks along the train tracks for about 6 minutes and then turns into the forest and walks over what looked like foliage flattened by a piece of plywood. The person continues on this makeshift plywood road until the movie clip ends.
Now my heart started beating with excitement because there were train tracks a few miles away that looked very similar to the one in the video. I had to check this out.
Me: Sounds like a good guy to call up. I'm not exactly scary at least in the sense of don't mess me with I can kick your ass. Seriously does the thumb go in or out when you make a fist? I'm not sure that was a good idea. Couldn't you just wake for him to wake up and go later?
I called up my friend Ezra; he's 6’4 250 pounds of mostly muscle. I convinced him to go on a little adventure with me. I’m no pushover myself, but I felt if was to go wandering in the woods looking for god knows what, extra muscle couldn’t hurt. This whole idea of investigating this video had me so excited I couldn’t sleep.
The next morning on a sunny Saturday, I took my flashlight, my camera, and my 7 inch ka-bar with a matte black finish and serrated edge and went to pick up Ezra. When I got to his house he wasn’t even awake. When I woke him he pretty much told me to fuck off. I was already packed and I had mentally prepared myself to do this so I decided to go through with it without him. I parked my car at the train station, took my stuff, and hopped onto the tracks.
After walking for about two hours, I saw a broken piece of plywood and my knees almost buckled with excitement. I searched the nearby foliage, and there it was: a little plywood trail leading into the forest.
I walked slowly along the trail, paying close attention to everything. I would stop occasionally, kneel down, and listen for anything or anyone… but it was so quiet. This was one of the most nerve-racking things I've ever done. I didn't know what to expect at the end of this trail.
Me: I guess even the forest gets hungry so why not start snacking on the abandoned house. Why have I never seen an abandoned house? There is a house not too far away that gives me weird feelings. I'm not sure if anyone is living it or not. I think there might be because they do shovel or someone is using it. I always have this weird urge to go inside but of course I don't because Stand Your Ground is legal here and if I'm going to be shot I want to make sure it is done in a way that is instant instead of me bleeding all over some stranger's living room rug.
The dense tree line gave way into a little island of grassy field, and then I saw it, a house being consumed by the forest. From the looks of it no one had lived there for 20, maybe 30 years. I got my camera and snapped a few pics. A few yards away from the house was a tool shed made of rusty sheet metal. I just sat there among the trees for a while, absorbing everything.
I didn’t want to go into the open field, I had this bad feeling that something would see me.
Me: I'm sure I wouldn't be as graceful but I would have done the same thing but I think there would be some screaming to go along with that jumpiing because that's how I roll. Hey that's not a scream when I kill a bug that's a battle cry. Bug Slayers don't scream when doing a job.
It took me a while to muster the courage to up to the house. The door was partly opened. I pushed it in with the flashlight and was relieved that the inside was actually very well-lit. I put my flashlight away, got my camera and took a few more pics. There was no furniture. The floor was riddled with bricks and wood and rubble, and some of the walls had huge holes in them. When I went in further to explore, I saw some things that I didn’t pay much mind to in that moment, but now that I think about them in hindsight, they greatly disturb me.
The first thing that seemed a little odd was that one of the doors in the first room, that I presumed led to the basement, seemed a little too new to be in this house. It was also the only door in the house that was locked. Also, when I made my way up to the second floor, I saw some chairs and a fold-up table that also seemed a little too new to be there. But what disturbed me the most for some reason, was the bathroom. The dust on the mirror had been wiped away, and in the bathtub, I saw a clear plastic tarp that still had water droplets on it from, when I presume, it was washed clean. That’s when I heard something moan really loud, and that’s when I jumped the fuck out of the second story window and ran back to the tracks.
Halfway there I realized the moaning was most likely a water pipe expanding or contracting, and that little moment of relief gave into the horror which I felt when I wondered why the water would be running on an abandoned house in the middle of the fucking woods.
It's been a little more than 2 months since this happened and I haven’t gone back there, nor do I plan to.
Me: Written by Barbara Desmond.