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Written by Silence-.


I found counting all the eyes in my room very comforting for some reason and it seems to always ease me to sleep within minutes after. So, I've had this habit for a long while and although it might seem a nuisance to others, I'm just glad I found a way to get to sleep.

When my sleeping problems first began and I told my mother, she worriedly called my father to tell him, even though I protested saying it wasn't that bad. I think, since I had only come out of the hospital from a dislocated arm a couple of days before, she was probably a bit more concerned for me than she needed to be. I mean it was just from falling down the stairs, but they've been very protective of me ever since. Oh well, I guess that's parents for you.

Anyway, I'm in college now, almost halfway through my first year and it's going well so far. I walk there from home, it being only a little over a mile away and I can take a short cut by going through the local shopping district.

Whilst I was on my way back in the afternoon one day, the shopping area was packed and inevitably someone crashed into me and my bag fell to the ground, its contents spilling everywhere.

I hurriedly gathered my things back into my bag and adjusted the clasp. And as my eyes brushed over the crowd of people while turning my head forward, something flashed, and my heart started to thump dramatically harder and it felt as if it was jumping up my throat. There was something that the corner of my eye had seen, but my mind had not.

I looked back in panic, unsure why, I stood there for a few minutes, trying to calm the pounding in my gullet, convincing it that nothing alarm worthy had happened. It pretty much worked apart from a light buzzing of anxiety which stayed with me for the rest of the night.

And like a child I was reluctant to sleep in my own room alone, though my seventeen-year-old pride denied me to act upon those feelings. So, once I'd counted the two hundred and fifty five eyes and shut off my light, I went to sleep, if not a little less easier than usual.  

From then on I began feeling faintly more paranoid; looking over my shoulder every now and then, thinking someone's watching me and walking markedly faster towards my destinations when this sudden uneasiness strikes. I never knew I could be so sensitive about such a small occurrence.  

Sometime later, I had a college trip to a historical library known for its lasting preservation from the seventeenth century, planned out by my history course. We were allowed to separate and investigate by ourselves or with our friends as long as we came back with a significant amount of research.

As soon as I stepped into the library, fear rushed into me, just like before. The smell...musty from age....with some sort of surgical chemical scent, maybe from cleaning products... That smell, that smell...I became breathless again and backed out of the foyer. My friends asked me what was wrong and I told them I didn't know...but urged them to go on ahead while I caught my breath.

Growing considerably dizzier, alongside some nausea building inside my stomach, I let myself slowly sink down onto the grass outside the entrance. And while I buried my head in my hands, trying to will the panic to stop, my tutor approached seeking an explanation. The only thing I could think to say was that I didn't feel well and needed some air; unfortunately, my history tutor wasn't that sympathetic, telling me I could have five minutes rest but needed to join the others after. Well, I didn't see that happening. Just being a few inches away...

Anyway, when he wasn't looking I took off.

Once I got back home I explained what happened to my parents...not the part about me freaking out about a smell but feeling sick and leaving without consent from the tutor.

Subsequent to that, the paranoia got worse, as did my apprehension... I even gave in to them by sleeping downstairs on the sofa rather than in my own room.

Counting the eyes no longer gave me comfort either.

I barely slept.

During one of my free periods, I went down the street from my college into town and wandered into a well-known clothes store to kill some time. Endeavoring unsuccessfully to distract myself from...from what?...I guess my trepidation.

But no, it seems it's not something I can so easily forget...as it follows me.

For while I held a top against my chest, as an insufficient way of trying the size, I looked at my reflection in the store mirror, I saw someone. Someone was looking at me through the window past the mirror. I'm sure...though I only caught their eyes, not their face; I know they were there.

The top fell to the ground and with no intention of picking it up; I backed up further into the store, away from the window.

My eyes kept darting back and forth from window to the door.

Should I leave?

What if they're still there though? ...Waiting for me.

But what if they come in?

No, no, it's fine... There are too many people about for anything... anything to happen.

...Just who am I scared of? Why...why have I become like this? But I know...I know! They want....they want...something...

In the end I just did what came natural and ran. Ran all the way back to college and hid in the common room till next period.

And when the day was finished I ran home.

Later that evening my parents were waiting to confront me, apparently to voice their worries about...well my new sleeping arrangements. There wasn't much I could say that wouldn't worry them, so I attempted to explain. They didn't really understand, which is fair enough, there isn't much I comprehend either. After a few other tries of coaxing me into further discussion about it but failing to get more sense out of it, they reluctantly went to bed.

The next couple of weeks progressed and people other than my parents were starting to notice the change in me. With my friends saying I had become 'intense' and 'no fun', and tutors constantly asking about my well-being.  It even got to a point that my parents tried subjecting me to some sort of counseling which I strongly refused.

It's too much, they're all being too much, and I need them to stop.

They're not even trying to understand...or help me.

They're just throwing the 'problem' somewhere else.

I decided to go back to being 'normal'. How I was.

Even if I have to pretend.

Time passed like that and the commotion slowly faded away. Until, my friend's science tutor, Ms Jean, came by to discuss a project assignment that was due one day. I stood there waiting for them to finish, taking notice of other things. Such as what Ms Jean held in her hands. It looked like some sort of Tupperware box. It was hard to see what was inside cause of the lack of transparency, but it appeared to be something wet from what I could see...maybe squishy? They were round too...maybe...boiled eggs?

They also turn their attention onto the box and my friend asks to see them excitedly, almost giddy-like. I lightly laughed at his antics, looking at him questionably. He smiles at me and asks if I want to see them too. The teacher jokingly sighs and begins to open the lid of the plastic container.

The first corner of the lid popped open a crack.

One, two, three, four, five, six-

Before Ms Jean could open it up anymore, I stumbled backwards onto the floor breathless.

They came to my side worriedly, bringing those-those things with them.

And once again I fled to my home. However, this time I intended to stay there.

My family tried, my friends tried but to no avail, I would not leave. I will not leave. Other people, shrink types, came to the house too; 'to help me' is what they said.

It's been three weeks since I left the house...and frankly I'm tired, so tired of always being afraid, haha afraid of what? I still don't know. I-why?

So, with what lack of pride I had left, I decided to sleep in my own room, my own bed. And even though it didn't help last time, I counted the eyes.

There are two hundred and fifty six pairs of eyes in my room.

"...fifty-six?" I mouth.

"M-maria..." A strained, uneven voice groans almost inaudibly. My ears twitch...

I would of shot out of my bed but I was too scared, too scared that if what I heard was real, it would notice me. It's silly, because it clearly knows I'm here. How could it not?

And I don't know...I don't know why but that voice, It's called out to me in the dark once before... My eyes had opened the widest they have ever been, letting a vicious rushing flood of retentions into my mind...

It's coming from the furthest corner of my room, and as my eyes are pulling out of their sockets, adjusting to the dark, I see...a mass of a misshapen slump and a form of a sagging smile.

Then he extends himself out towards me...one last time...

END

04:53, March 7, 2014 (UTC)~~
A magazine clipping three years prior...

In the early hours of 7th July, Elizabeth Meadow was found and rescued three days after her parents had reported her missing once she hadn't returned from college one evening. She is the fourth female to have gone missing in the last month around the Ames area.

On the 6th, around 11:30pm the Ares police station received a complaint of an ungodly smell coming from their neighbor's home.

Officers Jeane and Resses were the ones who responded to the call and went to the scene where they received no answer as they pounded on the door several times, until they heard a loud smashing of glass and irregular thumping coming far from inside the residence.

The officers decided to take the initiative and broke into the house.

"The smell as we opened the door was like....strong chemicals...such as disinfectant and after we stepped further into the house, something fouler filled the air..." Officer Reeses described.

Later, these chemical odors were identified as antiseptic, and the embalming fluid, formaldehyde.

The officers defined the house as 'tidy enough except everything was coated with a thick layer of dust. Like it was abandoned although to the contrary there were framed photos of the supposed house owner with his late wife,'

As they went further into the house, no one could be seen, and everything was quiet again. They searched in every room, and the garden but it seemed deserted. However, they kept on their investigation.  

"Suddenly, another thump was heard again and then a strange disorientated, screeching voice, gender unidentifiable, viciously shouted," to the officer's best knowledge, "Give back Maria's eyes!"

"Then we heard 'thump, thump, thump', just below us but there was no evidence of a basement, well, that we'd seen anyway."

What the police later discovered was that there was a set of double wooden doors back in the garden which had been hidden by newly laid grass, which looked extremely out of place, around the back of the house.

"When we reached the bottom of the stairs we found a grotesque sight... Weird carving instruments that were rusting; that we later found out was covered in human blood,-"

The blood samples were later found to include all three previous missing girls DNA as well as some of their limbs that had belonged to them.

"-clear bagged body parts and jarred eyes everywhere. There was some sort of operating table in the middle of the space...splatters of dried, old blood decorated it.

The victim was found curled up in a ball underneath the operating table, huddled and quivering, holding her arm in a strange angle. The victim's arm had been dislocated during an attempted escape, which was unfortunately thwarted by the pursuit of the abductor.

In later investigation, they found books on body preservation and alchemy, and bottled chemicals mentioned before as well as sterilizer.

Regrettably, the abductor was nowhere in sight and had managed to struggle out through a small window that leads out back into the garden. Unexplainable bloody scuff-marks on the wall just below the window, and drag marks of the same variety were shown through the garden but stopped abruptly which indicates he may have begun to carry whatever object he possessed.  

The investigation is still ongoing with the search for the offender. More information will be released to the public immediately.

04:53, March 7, 2014 (UTC)~~
Medical Progress Report
Patient: Elizabeth Meadow
Dr: Phoebe Kellson, Physiologist
Diagnosis: Psychological Trauma
Treatments: Hypnosis, Propranolol drug trial.

Due to this being my last report, for the patient is being discharged tomorrow, I will give a small summary of the progress since the patient was put under care.

The kidnapping gave the patient severe psychological trauma with symptoms such as nightmares, distancing self, easily startled and frightened, getting confused, reliving the event, incoherent mumbling about blood, hands, and severed body parts, especially eyes. The victim has suddenly become obsessively scared of them as well as becoming exceptionally protective of their own.

The management I've chose to run in dealing with Miss Meadow's ailment are, to start, regular hypnotic treatment from a Dr F. Barner, a specialist from the Juron Medical facilities in Olkshire.

The hypnosis was to help null or at least minimize her fears from the flashes of images that torment her because of the abduction. She had to attend a one hour session, every day, for a month. Unfortunately, no noticeable outcomes showed.

Although the results were poor, we still continued the hypnosis along with her appointments with me. I then mentioned to said patient about a drug trial that is made to help her kind of condition. I informed her all the information she needed from the ingredients to how long the trial will be. She agreed to it and the trial commenced after permission from their parents.

Propranolol, a beta blocker, has been recently used to be able to suppress traumatic memories, and become a drug trial for such incidents. The trial lasts for three months.

It appeared to be another futile attempt, making no progress whatsoever.  

However, not a week after the trial, remarkably the treatment seems to have had another result entirely, we don't know if it's from the hypnosis or Propranolol or maybe even from her own will but she seems to have forgotten the whole incident.

Her parents are very happy by this conclusion but...I fear it may be temporary, and it might come back even worse if they're not cautious. I will voice my worries tomorrow when they come for my final progress report...

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