"Because I'm scared, Martin!"
It's always been there. Watching, waiting to consume. Stories are a part of its… feeding of sorts, right?
It’s been watching him and the Institute since day one, but probably longer.
First day he brushes off being watched as new job jitters. You can blame hallucinations on drugs and drinking. He has a point. But then the feeling doesn't go away. Two days pass, then three, suddenly a whole week, and that gaze keeps following you.
You don't know how long it follows you either. Is it just at the institute, or is that when you're most aware of it? Does it follow you home? Watch you eat and sleep?
Is that why he doesn't sleep? Not just the Prentiss situation, but the watching.
A week passes, then two, then a month, then several months, and that gaze still follows you, still watches you. And you don't know what will happen when you admit it's there, when you admit that these stories are real.
What will it do? Will it do anything? Will it do anything to you? To your coworkers? To Martin and Sasha and Tim? To Elias? To Rosie?
You don't know. Maybe you don't want to know. Knowing seems too dangerous––the thought of risking people for knowledge is too great, too scary. The thought alone feels like too much acceptance of your situations so you shove it down with more statements except they're only getting more and more pointed.
A string, two strings, several strings all tying together from the hundreds of statements you've read, all leading back to––to something. Just… something.
It’s not the something that watches you. Not entirely. But you can tell they're related.
Something wants you. Something wants you to want it,––to admit these stories are real and connected to something. Whatever thing that haunts these people, whatever thing that has taken Jane Prentiss––it wants you to return its want, you know it, so you don't admit it. You play the skeptic because that feels safe, except it doesn't because you still believe these cases. Your words don't match your thoughts and feelings and whatever thing is beholding you knows.
You're going to give in eventually. You're going to have no choice. Unless you up and leave this job, but based off what you've read, that won't stop whatever this thing is. It'll just keep on watching and watching and you'll have to give in, and at least you can buckle and cave around people who will believe you.
So you stay.
And you keep reading.
And you keep dismissing.
And then Jane Prentiss comes through the wall and attacks.
She–– it? ––attacks your work and the people who will believe you when you fall. It's trying to take your support system. Trying to take you before you give into whatever watches, isn't it?
How long until you cave, Jon?
How long until you behold whatever has been beholding you?