Let Me Out | Teen Ink

Let Me Out

September 28, 2022
By Anaklusmos-8-18 BRONZE, Concord, Massachusetts
Anaklusmos-8-18 BRONZE, Concord, Massachusetts
2 articles 1 photo 1 comment

Quick. Hurry. They’ll find you.

Holding my breath the best I could, I fumbled through the drawers of my dresser, all of my current necessities suddenly out of my reach.


My eyes darted across my bedroom to the locked door, paranoia seeping through my veins. I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t speak, couldn’t move, all I could do was imagine the horror scene waiting beyond the slab of wood that drew the thin barrier between my life and my death.

Stop that. Keep moving. Time’s running out.

Snapping out of my trance-like state, I swiftly returned to my nearly impossible mission. I glared around the chamber, impatient fear squeezing my lungs and hijacking my brain.

No. Not now. Get back to the list.

I silently cursed under my breath. How could I let myself get so close? I was practically begging for my panic to take over! I painfully pinched the inside of my elbow, just like Mum would have if she was with me now. That’s when I saw it. The gleaming sliver of a black handle sticking out from behind the foot of my bedside table, its smooth surface fluorescing in the soft glow of twilight. My hands shivered towards it, my breath catching in my throat. When my body made contact with the object, I could finally think again, feel again. Now, I was ready. Now, I was protected. Now, I had a gun.

It took me a mere three minutes to fill my rucksack, but it felt like hours. I had already planned the order of objects so none would get damaged during the escape. I couldn’t risk losing a single one of my acquired possessions. Without just one of them... I couldn’t think about that. Not now. My bedsheet was an easy find. I tore it from the mattress and forcefully thrust it into the bottom of my bag, all the while imploring myself to keep sneaky and soundless. Next went the change of clothes - neatly rolled up and compressed into little cylinders - and the plastic bag containing my favourite book and the locket Mum gave me for my fifteenth birthday. The last birthday I would ever have with her before she- she-. Tears sprung in my eyes, but I swiftly swiped them away, along with the woeful thoughts of my moms. I stuffed the rainbow water bottle, now wrapped in black paper, into the rucksack’s side pocket, and the day-old sandwiches from Friday’s lunch in the smaller front pouch. All that was left was the baseball bat, the flashlight, and the gun. Thankfully, I had thoroughly planned the placement of those items. I grabbed the rucksack’s front strap and connected it with its other end, securing the baseball bat underneath the leather. Slipping the gun into the pocket of my charcoal yoga pants, I swung the rucksack over my shoulder and gripped the flashlight in my right palm. I was ready. But when I tried to take a step, my legs wouldn’t cooperate. I was frozen, fear glueing the soles of my shoes to the oak floor.

Stop it, now. You need to get out of here.

I clenched my fists, sharp nails cutting through smooth almond palms. One step after the other, I slowly approached the door. My clammy hands quivered as they reached for the doorknob. Grasping the handle like my life depended on it, I carefully unlocked the door. Knees quaking back and forth, I shakily stood in place as the door swung open like a book, written with words of ominous horror and heart-wrenching pain.

It took a moment for my eyes to adjust to the dimly lit passage, but when they refocused, a wave of shock crashed upon my trembling little body. My breath caught in my throat, tears springing from my eyes. It was the same. Everything. Like it never happened. Like they were still beside me, holding my hands. I tried to force down a sob, but it came out as more of a hiccup, rising from the deepest, darkest, most secluded section of my heart. I wanted to collapse, to crumble, to burn away, and never rise from the ashes, but I couldn’t. I had to keep going. For Mum. For Tula.

I stumbled down the dank hallway, nearing the secret passage at the very end. Footstep after footstep, I anxiously tread deeper and deeper into my agony and despair. After a moment, I jolted to a stop and slid on my heels, facing the secret barrier. Breathing heavily, water dripped down my cheeks as I gazed longingly at the portrait. Mum in her trench coat and dark green scarf, Tula in their jean overalls, the two of them strolling down Hawthorn Lane with a baby me giggling peacefully in Tula’s arms. Choking on heartache, I reached up towards the painting, my hand brushing against its gold-painted frame. My fingers shivered past the picture frame to a hidden gold switch. Pulling the switch downwards, an eerie CLICK! echoed along the ghostly corridor, making the hair on my arms stand straight up. I anxiously pulled the painting from the wall to reveal a small, shadowed passageway. Hoisting my body into the tunnel, I crawled in ominous silence before stopping once I reached the other end: Tula’s coat closet. My heart dropped to my stomach as I thrust aside about a hundred trench coats, gently placing my feet down onto the plush, sage green carpet. The closet was a peaceful haven, secluded from the horror that awaited me. With the lights turned off, I was forced to squint as I fumbled for my flashlight. Flipping the “on” switch, a harsh fluorescent glow lit up the closet. I ran my hands against the rose-painted wall, its familiar chipped surface soothing my fingers. My heartbeat slowed to a nostalgic, lonely pitter-patter as my feet inched towards the beige door. Hands wrapping around the knob, my chest heaved as it creaked open.

Breathe in, breathe out. Breathe in, breathe out. You’re fine. You’re almost out of here. You’ve almost esca-

My gut contorted in shock, clammy hands suddenly drenched in sweat as my eyes dramatically painted the horror scene before me. Appalling clumps of detached flesh and stray hair littered the carpet. Bright red liquid was splattered across the walls. Trails of soggy guts were splattered across the foul floor, and what I prayed wasn’t a lone bloodshot eyeball hung pinned to the grandfather clock by a corroded dagger. A scream boiled up from my throat, burning the roof of my mouth. But I couldn’t make a sound. It was too much. Everything was too much. The gunshot holes. The wreckage. The blood. It was all too much. My heart clattered around in my chest, but not a beat rang out. My veins seemed to go dry as all the blood rushed to my head. My lungs choked for breath, my legs crumpling to the cracked floor. Eyes fogging up with tears and terror, my head crashed to the floor and I slipped away to the hellish realm of panic and despair.

The author's comments:

This story is about a girl whose mothers worked for a government and were murdered in society's chaotic attempt at overthrowing national leaders. The girl, aware of her moms' murders, must escape her house while unsure if the murderer is still lurking, waiting for her to reveal herself...

TRIGGER WARNING: Gruesome and possibly triggering content

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