Our latest Staircase short story is a subtle play at a satire. Hope you like it. The backdrop is set in today’s technological age where life is reduced to social media and mobile phones.
Sliding through her pictures on Facebook was his favorite pastime. Angie was Steve’s weakness. His lifelong crush who had consumed his life unknowingly. Even though she was with someone else now, it was hard for him to shake her off. Was it him, or was it her who was responsible for that?
It was just another night for Steve as he flipped through her latest posts. Things appeared to be going fine with her new boyfriend. She looked….what’s the word we tack against a smiling face…..happy!
Just then the messenger shouted out loud. It was a sad smiley emoticon coming from her crush.
He didn’t waste a second to respond.
It showed typing….as he waited patiently, thousands of thoughts going through his head.
“Rob and I had a fight.”
There was a pause and then the sentence was completed with a –
He wanted to say a lot of things. But all he could manage was,
“I need you.”
It wasn’t the first time that had happened. He would always cave in, as a friend.
“You know what time it is?”
An angry face was slapped this time on the messenger. He knew he shouldn’t have said that. So he rectified himself.
“Alright, I am coming.”
A smiley happy face showed as he got up from his bed.
Steve put on his new pair of clothes he was saving for the party next weekend, dug himself deep under the sweet yet contrived miasma of the deodorant, and grabbed his keys to his room. He locked the door behind as he made his way out towards the staircase.
It was a three storeyed building without a lift. Steve lived on the top floor. He started his descent.
He was so accustomed to the stairs that he didn’t ever pay attention to the lights that were never switched on at the second floor. With “her” thoughts in his head, and what would he when he would see her at her place, and with a smile on his face he started alighting from the stairs.
He was already three floors down when he found a landing instead of the bottom floor. He was surprised. Towards the right side, his door 303 beamed.
“Didn’t I just reach the bottom? How did I end up here?”
Or was I just imagining things? This time he decided to pay heed as he once again started the descent. To his surprise, he was there at his own door yet again.
“What is happening?”
He checked the stairs up good. He peeked through the top to find the bottom floor. It was there. A light bulb flickered.
“Why am I not making it then?”
He once again started the journey but this time he had hardly covered a floor that his door showed up towards the right.
Confused he ran up this time. And the door was there as well. He didn’t understand what was happening to him.
He pinched himself to confirm if it was a dream. It wasn’t.
He once again decided to go down but this time in the darkness he found somebody sitting on the stairs. It had white eyes that reflected in the darkness. Steve at once hit a button on his mobile to check what it was. But it was no longer there.
At this point, any sane man would have decided to return. But Steve was blinded by love. He couldn’t stop thinking about Angie. He climbed down further slowly, this time convinced that it was a mere hallucination he saw. Surprisingly this time his door didn’t show up to the right. Towards the right was 203. He relaxed a bit, and decided to move on. But just then as he turned to make the second-floor flight he saw that silhouette once again there. Its eyes shone bright, and it growled this time.
He relaxed a bit, and decided to move on. But just then as he turned to make the second-floor flight he saw that silhouette once again sitting there face forward staring at him. Its eyes shone bright. It growled this time.
Unable to move, Steve tried to go for his mobile once again, when the thing charged at him.
Steve ran up stumbling through the flight, as his door showed up to the right. He could feel the monster close behind as he turned around with the flashlight to check what it was that followed him.
But there was no one.
He stumbled with his keys as he burst his door open and closed the door behind. Locked it tight. He stared through the keyhole for a second but it all seemed quiet.
He decided to call Angie this time.
Angie’s voice crackled from the other end.
“I am trying to come to you but there is this thing, this thing at the staircase…..”
Just then he heard the same growl coming from his phone and the phone fell from his hands.
He left it there and jumped into his bed. He dug himself under the blanket scared shitless.
Steve listened to himself breathing for a while and then decided to peek through. He lifted his blanket up slowly to see his mobile phone. But it was no longer there. He lifted the blanket more and found the mobile sitting right next to his pillow.
Just then he heard the mobile phone ring. It was Angie!
As soon as he lifted his hand to pick the phone up to respond, to talk to Angie, a hand caught his. The growling rang in his ears, and he saw the monster standing right at the corner of the bed overlooking him. It jumped at him to hunt as shrieks resounded in that empty room.
Did you like Staircase? Check out our other fictitious work as well.