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The Whispers

in the


Vol. I

Stories by Pendleton Mane

First, some legal nonsense:

©2017 Pendleton Mane

All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced in any form without permission from the author, except as permitted by U.S. copyright law. For permissions contact:


Table of Contents

Deja Vu

Somewhere on Dulvey Lane

The Man on Route 199

The Fate of Ronald Schultser


Deja Vu

I woke up this morning and I could hear a woodpecker echoing off in the distance beyond my bedroom window. I eventually pulled myself out of bed and begun the mundane minutiae of the day: brushed my teeth, rinsed my face, those kind of things. As I looked into the mirror, a strange familiarity welled inside me. I waved the feeling away, I did the same thing, in the same order, everyday. Of course it would all seem familiar.

Breakfast was two pieces of toast with a thin layer of peanut butter on both. I ate my breakfast while sipping at my coffee. I drank my coffee this morning the same way as I did every morning: black with one teaspoon of sugar. The television played in the background; the news was on, the reporter in the salmon skirt was warning viewers about some series of murders. I tried not paying attention, it was much too early for such macabre things. But as I reached for the remote to turn the volume down, the strange familiarity welled inside me again. I chalked this up to the same coffee I had everyday. There had to be a day in my past that I barely remembered that I did the same thing: one hand on the remote and one on my coffee mug. Merely a coincidence. I tried not connecting it to the grisly news splattered on the television screen. I'm not the superstitious type.

The drive to the office was uneventful, as usual. It wasn't a work day but I had a few accounts to close out and emails that needed to be received before the beginning of the week. Being a Saturday, the office was rather bare. There was a few diehards wandering the building alongside me, Lynn from Accounting and Hanson from Human Resources were talking about string of murders as we rode the elevator. I got out as soon as I could, marching through the doors to avoid being caught up in such a conversation. I made it down the hall and took a left. I fished out my office keys from my pocket, pushed it through the lock and as I felt the tumblers click into place the same strange familiarity rose up in me again. But this time my muscles tightened and the hair on my arms stood straight on end. I looked around, down the dimly lit halls and behind me to the rows of locked office doors: there was nothing, I was alone.

I sat at my desk, the echoes of tapping keys and the clicking of my mouse filled the room. The sound of creaking and loud footsteps just outside my office door shook me from my concentration. I looked up to see the blurry shadow of a figure standing on the other side of the privacy glass that made up the middle of my office door. I got up from my chair but before I could reach the door, the figure moved away. I glanced down each hall but no one was there. For some reason this truly jarred me. I couldn't shake a feeling like I shouldn't be here, that I needed to leave. I turned off my computer and locked the office and rushed down the hall and out the building as fast as I could.

I stopped by the grocery store. “Comfort food would make me feel better” I must have thought to myself as I collected hotdogs and spicy mustard along with popcorn along with other of my favorite snacks but the haunting feeling of familiarity surged inside me again. I could feel the fear causing me to sweat and breathe erratically. I left my car and ran from the store, surely looking mad.

Next I tried the movie theatre, bookstore then the park. It didn't matter, nothing I did could shake the feeling. I kept watching the strangers I passed, kept glancing behind myself. I paced, I was drenched in sweat, I begun to feel sick. I decided that I needed to head home, gather my thoughts and get a cold glass of water.

I pulled into my driveway. Ran up to my front door and slammed it behind me. I double checked that it was locked and then sunk into my couch and took a deep breath. My muscles loosened and I begun to feel relaxed. I felt silly to allow myself to ruin an entire day to some shivers and superstitious feelings. A warm bath, that would calm my nerves, I decided.

Each step I took down the hallway returned the sparks of familiarity that had been haunting me all day. I tried to shake the feelings. I turned to the bathroom door and standing before was a large hulking figure. A small ceramic mask covered most of his face. I tried to turn and run but he tackled me to the ground. He grabbed the back of my head and slammed it into the wall, again and again. I could feel the crunch of the cartilage in my nose caving in. When he threw my body against the floor it was hard to focus my sight, only seeing the stranger as a hulking blur in my vision. I didn't need to see to feel the horror of what he would do next, I could hear it: the mechanical whirl of a power tool started up near me. I could feel pressure against my head, he was holding me down and the mechanical sound of the power tool slowly got closer and closer until I felt the sharp pain against the side of my head. It was a drill, and it was pulling and ripping the flesh of my ear and temple. I tried to scream but nothing was left. All I could hear was the echo of drill boring into my skull as everything went dark. It felt as time slowed as I took my last breathe.

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