There is nothing on the streets but the chilling wind that sings a familiar sad song as it greets the tired man it wraps itself around. He doesn’t know how many times he has experienced this exact scene. He doesn’t know how many times he has experienced a lot of things. Still, there is nothing on the streets but the wind, and this is what he repeats to himself over and over again.
This particular time of the day is the worst for Ryan, right when he is leaving work, the end of the afternoon. It feels like an invisible veil of some other universe that is mingling to this one just for a few minutes, until it goes back to it's original route of different direction. It is not afternoon and it’s not night, it’s something completely different.
It feels like the way purple looks. Like summertime and the feeling of waking up and not knowing what time it is. It makes him the most vulnerable to… the things. He keeps walking and ignores everything that looks funny on the corner of his eye, sighing.
“It’s going to be a long night, isn’t it?”
An unusual amount of hair in the corner. Ryan stares at it with only one eye, avoiding a terrible accident involving shampoo… Again. The hair was not there when he showered the night before. And he tries his best to keep his eyes open to see if the thing is actually moving or not but the sleepless night’s weight in his eyelids is proving the task to be rather difficult. There is the faint smell of something metallic in the air that not even soap can mask.
It’s safe to say he does not sing in the shower.
He shivers a little as the memories of the eternity of last night come all at once. He remembers the feeling of something standing in the corner of his bed, something staring for hours in the dark while he pretended to sleep.
The worst part is that Ryan is aware that this whole thing is happening in his head, believe it or not. He is. At least, all of the books he has read about types told him the same thing: The mop of cold, wet hair is not real. But Ryan knows that if he touched it, it would feel just as real as his own.
The way he sees the world is not real, but it sure as hell feels like it. Quite literally, in his case.
And he is still so fucking tired.
He has heard about others, people like him. People with Horror Movies. -It’s kinda hard not to, everyone knows a story or two. There are few books about them, but people always tell. They talk about people who got so trapped inside their own minds that couldn’t bare to live anymore. People who had hallucinations so deep that their minds couldn’t accept it.
In his world, and in the particular way he is living it, there are worse things than his Supernatural Horror status (he says to himself in the dark while he tries to still his breath and ignore the soft touches of something old.) There are people with Slasher types, who become completely paranoid of leaving their houses -and even staying inside their houses. Sometimes, they mix ways with Criminal types. Not knowing the difference between reality and hallucinations can be fatal. They end up dead too many times to even bother writing about, Ryan guesses.
His type is politely ignored by science, focused way more on the violent tendencies, superpowers or the crazy, obsessive murderers of Stalker Romance types. The Supernatural people are usually loners and forgotten, living alone in the hidden places of the universe. Most of them don’t get to their thirties, anyway.
He discovered his type at a young age, at the same time he learned he needed to do everything possible to hide it. He smiled politely and told everyone he was a Coming of Age, boring and not really visible, and faked annoyance when people didn’t bother asking for more information. If they saw the bags under his eyes or the way he flinched every time a light was turned off? Well, everyone is afraid of the dark, in one way or another.
His mother was a Romantic type and his first memories are filled with the smell of baked sweets, sunshine and all of those fluffly things he likes to pretend he doesn’t envy. She told him all about the great gift of seeing only the best in the world. Even after her husband left her, to be with some girl half his age, she always reminded him about how romance doesn’t have to wrap around a single person. Ryan would deny to everyone who asked, but he did dream of becoming one himself growing up. Dreamed about becoming a Romantic type, finding the beauty of the universe and having it smile at him in return.
Instead, it trew nightmares at his face.
Shane is having a perfectly comfortable dream that somehow involves hotdog witches and evil eggshells when a noise that could only be described as “hell is real and it's playing drums on your door” wakes him up.
“SHANE!! GET THE FUCK UP, WE´RE LATE!” Andrew bangs on the door, yelling like a dying goose. Honestly, what the fuck.
“WHAT THE FUCK?” Shane sits abruptly, staring at the phone. “Oh, Jesus Christ.”
Typical. He doesn’t know why he even tries.
He stands up, putting on his pants faster than he probably should, if the way he hits his nose flatly against the floor is any indication. Great, blood on his cool, expensive white shirt. This is going to be a long day, isn’t it? They manage to leave (almost) on time to catch the bus, and Shane thanks God for Andrew’s existence, because he knows he wouldn’t be so lucky on his own.
Life hack: When your whole life is april fools, surround yourself with regular people and suck their normal-peopleness like a ridiculous little vampire.
It helps that people actually change their ways whenever they see Andrew (Shane can’t blame them, he is quite intimidating), so they do manage to get to work on time, against all the odds. It's their first day at the company and Shane still can't believe he managed to bullshit his way through interviews enough to get here, but he made it.
It's not that impressive, they are interns and they don't exactly “earn any money (yet)”, but it's a beginning and the blind optimism of a first day of work is a thing he digs. Hard. Just like his nose on the floor.
The company itself is pretty average: They have a news website and a regular, old-fashioned newspaper. There have been rumours about dropping the newspaper for a few years now, but some columns are famous online and offline, so the managers are doing their best to make it work. Shane’s personal favorite is a small, frequent little segment about horror movies. The guy who writes them, some dude nicknamed “R. Goldsworth” makes sure to leave just the perfect combination of information and his personal devious little comments to make his day every single time.
Shane is almost certain he has found someone like him. A specific category of Humor type that he has never found in anyone, ever. He is not the kind of guy who obsesses a lot about his type, yeah, it would feel nice to have someone who related to his struggles, but it’s not like he is completely miserable. Sure, being a Superhero type is like… his biggest dream, but no amounts of flying would be enough to be worth almost living on hospitals from having crazy birds flying in his face every time he tried to.
He already has to deal with the occasional crazy bird, and he is constantly on the ground.
“Hey!” A nice-looking guy (yeah, in all of the ways you can understand this) approaches them. Shane thinks about how the word “approaches” makes it looks like a pokemon game, but then again, he can’t control the narrative. “You two must be the new guys! I’m Steven!”
He sort of looks like a puppy.
“Hey.” He says because he is pretty sure Andrew is not polite enough to do it, but, against all his previous prejudice, the man in question smiles politely at Steven.
What the fuck.
“I’m Shane, and this is Andrew. He is the reason we are late, so, sorry about that.” Smile about this, fucker.
No shoving, no ‘fuck you’, no ‘yeah, as if’ comes from Andrew.
Shane almost expects to look at him and see a fucking ghost there on the spot because he is sure his friend just died. Andrew is looking at Steve and smiling (s m i l i n g) as if to say “Honestly, can you believe this?”
Oh, for fucks sake.
He awkwardly walks away without being noticed and makes his own way around, muttering to himself about ‘useless coworkers, useless friends’ all the way to his table. Yeah, if he can consider that small piece of plastic full of other people’s crap his table.
But, hey, first day optimism!
He wonders about the proper behaviour for like… 2 seconds before taking all of the bags and books from his table and placing them nicely on the ground. He knows it belongs to him (or suspects it to) because of the little nametag on the table. Yes, it does say “Shane Madege”.
Old pal Madege. Let’s go, punks!
The world is strangely peaceful in the morning as Ryan leaves the house for what will be his last day on Earth. Just kidding. By the end of it, he will wish it was in fact his final point. But life (or death, in this case) is rarely this merciful. No cars stuck on traffic, full of people with morning-anger yelling and cursing each other like they normally do. He checks his phone for the time and he is, in fact, not late. None of this has any importance for the development of the story, but it does start off nicelly, doesn’t it?
Yeah. If you are still here, is probably time to introduce our lovebirds, or else my audience will inevitably die of starvation caused by extreme slowburn.