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Lakewood Times

Lakewood Times

“Deja Vu”

My snug corner in the living room, which I begged my mom to let me make into a reading nook, was my place of comfort. My books sat on a shelf just right of me, and I had an accent table to set my drink on to my left. I rested my feet on the square tufted ottoman before my recliner. I closed my eyes. 

I opened my eyes after I felt a warm, tickling sensation at my feet. My socks were tattered and burned, and there were flames aggressively licking at my feet, slowly climbing up my legs. Strangely, it didn’t hurt. 

I opened my eyes, startled at what I just envisioned. I stood up from my chair, my breath felt short. I felt incredibly lightheaded, so I went around the corner to the kitchen to get water. 

I rounded the corner only to stop in my tracks suddenly. On the kitchen floor sat an old lady who I recognized. I whipped my head around to look at the fireplace mantel where my grandma’s urn and a framed photo of her sat. I turned back to her, her eyes meeting mine. 

“Wait… Grandma…?” My voice was a sort of trigger for fire to erupt all around her. She began screaming, but she sat there still, her eye contact never breaking. 

“What the fu-” I felt a strong urge to vomit, my hands covered my mouth and I shut my eyes tightly. When I opened them, it was gone. The fire was gone. Grandma was gone. What is happening…? I carefully walked over to the fridge, avoiding the spot on the kitchen floor where it was sitting. I opened it and grabbed a bottle of water. I twisted the cap off of it and shut my eyes to take a sip. 

I opened my eyes as I drank the water. There was a little vent above the fridge. In it, I saw a small grotesque red thing with small beady black eyes riddled with wrinkles.  
“Hey.. he-y-y what are you doing…? Do you thi—nk you coul-d help meeeee with some–thing?” 

I had no control over my mouth contorting into a strange shape, and my expression switching from uneasy to disgusted. 

“No.. no I can’t. Go away.” Why is it talking to me??? Who’s voice is this? I opened my mouth to scream, but the creature beat me to it. It screamed, almost screeched, gurgling between them, as if mocking my fear. I couldn’t scream anyway. Every time I tried, my voice failed me. I dropped the water bottle and to my knees. I curled up into a ball. What is happening to me…. The mutilated creature in the vent continued to scream and yell obscenities.

I found myself chanting into my knees the word “demon.” It was the only word I could think of. Has this happened to me before…?

All of a sudden the screaming stopped. 

I heard a knocking at the door. Mom? I got up from the floor. My legs were shaking and my hands were trembling. What if it’s not her?



I went over to the door and unlocked it. She opened it after hearing the lock unlatch. 

“Mom I can’t even… explain what just happened to me.”

“What do you mean? Are you okay?” 

“I think I’m having hallucinations or something…” 

“Have you eaten today?” She said as she stepped into the house. “Drinken any water? I know you struggle staying hydrated.” 

“No… No, I have eaten and had some water. Mom, how did Grandma die?” 

She paused in the middle of taking her jacket off. 

“Why?” She said in a hollow tone. 

“I saw her.”

“What did you see?”

“She was in the kitchen. On the floor. And when I said her name, she got set on fire. And the weird thing is, before that, I was sitting in my chair, dozed off, “woke up” and my feet were on fire. And it felt so strangely familiar, and calm. But each hallucination got weirder and weirder, and then it was terrifying.” 

“What do you mean familiar, Amelia?” She had a serious look on her face.
“My mother died in a fire. I watched her burn, there was nothing I could do to help her. I haven’t told you about it because it was,” her voice cracked and she broke into tears “so mortifying. The entire time she screamed at me to run, and that there was a ‘demon’. I can’t believe she continued saying those falsities even while she was in such pain.” 

My throat tightened.

“What..” I managed to choke out. “Mom, you can’t be serious. She wasn’t lying.”

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