The Restroom, part 8


THE RESTROOM, by Joseph Simmons
Part 8


Carl screamed again, then it was muffled. The man was still screaming but something was covering his face. Sam could hear his coworker struggling and trying to scream and felt like a coward for not rushing out there and helping.

I’ve got to do something, Sam thought.


A loud and unmuffled scream surprised him. Whatever had covered Carl’s face had moved. Maybe they weren’t in as much danger as he felt.

As he opened his mouth to say something, the room filled with flickering white and blue electric light. Sam began to cover his eyes until he saw the shadow on the ceiling. The light was coming from the urinals, where Carl had been standing. The flickering and flashing blue light cast a huge shadow on the ceiling. The shadow faded in and out, jumping into different positions on the ceiling as the light flickered.

The power’s trying to come back on, Sam thought. His mind was racing. That’s all, just the power. Be back on in a minute and…

The light stopped as something heavy and wet slammed into the wall. All of the walls in the restroom shook. The door in the stall next to Sam’s banged open. Sam thought he heard Carl scream again but it sounded like he was under water. Inside something? Is something on top of him? I need to help.

A drop of sweat ran into his eye and he faked courage to take a step in the direction of the stall door. A thick, suction sound came from the urinals. There was another flush as the thing that had fallen from the ceiling moved. Sam knew, he just knew, that it had stuck to the wall somehow and was pulling itself off.

But I still have to get out there and help Carl, he thought.

With another step, he hoped his heart would build some honest courage. It didn’t come and never had the chance.

The whatever-it-was slammed itself into the first stall. Bolts tore loose as the wall crashed into the stall. A piece of something hard tinkled across the floor in the dark and bounced off of his foot.

It was moving. The air was thick and hot and Sam dug the balls of his feet into the floor to press his back into the wall. A toilet, it must have been the one in the first stall, broke away from the floor. Fast water began pouring in the restroom and he could hear it running onto the floor around him.

And the thing was still moving. It was sticking to the walls. He listened to the sticky smacking as a heavy, thick weight peeled off of the surfaces as it moved.

When the door in the next stall slammed open and the toilet flushed, Sam refused to close his eyes. Even though he couldn’t see, he was too afraid to not look.

It’s not real, Sam thought. Not real, not real. None of this is fucking real.

He feared if he closed his eyes, he would lose a perspective on that pitch black reality and accept what was happening as a fact. If the lights blinked back on and Carl said something, he’d listen to the guy talk forever to make sure this wasn’t real. Please be alive, be alive, Carl Please, I never thought I’d ever say this, but please start talking.

Drywall cracked and ripped as the thing pushed against his stall. To his right, he heard a small sound, an innocent, thin sliding. Before he guessed that it was the lock turning, the door opened with a creeeeeek in the darkness. Then the sticky thing slid off, slamming the door into the wall.

Oh shit, Sam thought, this thing’s not moving, it’s growing. It’s a big pile of something that fell out of the god damned ceiling and it ate Carl and it’s getting bigger and it’s coming after me. Please let the lights come back on. This has to be some kind of joke. Come on, lights, come on assholes with the jokes. Time to turn ‘em on and let me go home terrified and take a shit and never use a public fucking bathroom ever again.


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