Thursday, February 19, 2009

For whom the phone rings...

So this is what happens when I am forced to watch a Steven King movie. (FYI if you don't know who Steven King is you probably shouldn't be reading this story :P)
For whom the phone rings...

Ring, ring! Ring, ring!

The neon green phone rang its hot pink charger as the young blonde walked in the door. She wiped her brow as she threw her headband down, and plucked the iPod earphones from her head, draining the last of the water in her water bottle before tossing it on the table too.


"Hey Jenny, its Brent. I was wondering if you were gonna come to the party tonight?"

"Brent. I already told you! Not tonight! I have to study for my psych final. Maybe next weekend."

"Fine. But, hey, listen. Did you just get back from your run? What are you wearing?"

"Good night Brent!"

She dropped the phone back in its charger and walked over to the refrigerator of her small apartment. It was all neat and tidy, perfectly set up and organized. Jenny was a self diagnosed obsessive compulsive and a creature of habit at that. She grabbed the orange juice, placed between the mango and the pineapple juice (alphabetical order) and a glass from the cupboard, arranged from tallest to shortest.

Ring, ring! Ring, ring!

She rinsed the glass out and placed it in the dishwasher, then walked over and grabbed the ringing phone.


"Hello, I'm calling for a Jenny M." said a low, soft male voice.

"This is her." Jenny said as she wiped a bit of juice from the kitchen table.

"I'm calling on behalf of your safety." said the man with the smooth voice.

"My safety? What do you mean?" Jenny asked confused.

"Did you lock your front door?" asked the man.

And then there was a dial tone.

Jenny was still holding the dead phone as she walked to her front door, which she had left wide open. She closed the door and turned the small latch to lock it. As the latch clicked into place, something thudded hard against the door. Jenny jumped and yelled with shock, dropping the phone. She was shaking as she picked the phone back up and walked towards the door.

This was one of the times she wished she had a peephole. Slowly, she waited a few seconds, holding her breath as she listened to the sound coming from outside. She reached for the door handle and slowly undid the latch. She placed her hand against the door and pushed it open carefully with a creaking groan. And she stepped outside of her apartment door, into the dim light of the porchlights.

But there was no one there. She looked around and nothing seemed out of the ordinary. So she turned around and closed the door, not seeing the large indent on the wooden surface. Jenny latched the door again just to be on the safe side.

A few minutes later she was in the shower. As she washed the cares of the day away she began thinking of the caller again. She tried dismissing the call, tried reasoning with herself as she logically assessed the situation. She even tried psychoanalyzing the caller and herself and their strange relationship from a psychologist perspective. And as she was still thinking, she heard it again.

Ring, ring! Ring, ring!

She stepped out of the shower and wrapped a towel around herself as she picked up the receiver. It was not the man with the smooth voice. The callers voice sounded hoarse, almost parched, as he wheezed out his words between long, heavy breaths.

“You… didn’t… close… the water… all… the way…”

A dead dialtone.

Jenny was shaking as she walked back to the bathroom, hoping against all odds that she had closed the water all the way. But even before she reached the bathroom she could hear it. The sound that brought a sickening feeling to her stomach. The dribbling sound of water still barely coming out of the shower head.

She grabbed the phone and jumped into her walk in closet, closing the door and leaning against it as her heart pounded. She tried to think. Tried to reason it away. But even reason was aginst her. Someone was watching her. There were no windows in her bathroom. Which meant someone must have been in her apartment at that moment.

She pulled slacks and a t-shirt on as she tried to find a place to hide in her closet. Wiggling into a spot in the corner she quickly covered herself with clothing, her heart beating like a drum as she tried to still her breathing.

Ring, ring! Ring, ring!

She nearly dropped the phone that time. With quaking fingers she pressed the answer button and held the phone to her ear. The voice that greeted her was the smooth voice from before.

“Did you cover yourself up all the way?”

“How do you know what I’m doing? What’s going on?!” she cried as tears began flowing down her cheeks.

“It’s complicated. What I can tell you is he’s close. He’s watching. He’s listening. He’s waiting. If you call the cops, it’ll be too late when they get there.”

She whimpered as another tear rolled down her cheek.

“For now, stay where you are, and don’t open the door, no matter what you hear.”

Jenny gave a sniff and nodded her head, then remembered she was on the phone and spoke shudderingly, “Alright.”

The phone went dead. Jenny sat in the oppressive silence of the dark closet for several minutes. She still had enough sense to turn the volume of the phone off. Now all it would do is light up its display when someone called. After a few minutes that dragged on like lifetimes, she heard it.

There were footsteps coming from outside. The wooden floorboards creaked and groaned as someone walked across them. The shadow could be seen under the door as the person walked past the door, and then, halting, turned towards it. Jenny’s heart stopped as the door handle rattled.

“Jenny, are you there?” It was Brent’s voice.

“Brent! Oh my god! Its you!” Jenny said, getting up.

The phone’s display lit up as a call came in.

“Don’t do it! Remember what I said! Don’t open the door no matter what!”

“Jenny? Are you in there?” Brent asked from outside the door.

“Jenny! He’s trying to trick you! Don’t answer! Hide! Stay away from the door!” came the smooth voice over the phone.

Jenny whispered into the phone, “How do I know I can trust you?”

The phone died. On the screen it said “battery power out”.

Jenny walked up to the door, placed her hand on the door handle, and tried to draw steel from it. Taking a deep breath she opened the door outward. No one was there. She walked towards the bedroom.

“Jenny!” A voice yelled behind her.

She screamed as she turned around, swing the phone and flinching away from the hands that grabbed her.

“Hahahah! You should have seen your face!” It was Brent. “That was priceless! Hahaha! Good one Toby!”

Next to Brent was the one he had called Toby. He was one of Brent’s friends from the basketball team, long and lank and holding a cell phone. When he spoke she recognized the smooth voice from before.

“Hello Jenny.” He intoned, then burst out laughing with Brent.

“You two idiots! You nearly scared me half to death! What’s wrong with you morons?!” she yelled as she punched both of them on the shoulder repeatidly.

“Come on Jen! Its just a joke.” said Brent laughing, “I mean, you’re the one who fell for it. Besides, you’re kinda cute when you’re angry like this.”

Jenny scowled as she said, “Brent, some things are funny and some are just plain wrong! That stunt with the bathroom was sick! I mean, how dare you two spy on me when I’m in the shower!”

“Hey! Don’t go getting all high and mighty. I mean, yeah, you’re right. Normally I would be the first one to spy on you in the shower, but I didn’t okay!” Brent said, getting flustered.

“What are you talking about Jenny?” Toby asked confused as they all heard a sound coming from the closet.

Ring, ring! Ring, ring!

Jenny turned pale as she heard the ringing phone. Brent went and got it while Toby walked to the kitchen. Jenny’s mind was spinning as she thought about what the two had said.

“Hey, there’s something wrong with the door.” Toby said as he jiggled the front door handle. “It won’t budge.”

Brent walked back to the three and answered the phone, putting it on speaker phone. The phone which was suppose to have been on silent. The phone which was suppose to be out of power. A voice crackled over the speaker. A voice Jenny recognized from before.

The low wheezing, the hard breaths, the gravelly tone.

“Hello Jenny. Or should I say Jenny, Brent, and Toby was it? Good, the more the merrier. Hehehe. Toby, put that cell phone down. Even if you called 9-1-1 by they time they find what’s left of you there won’t be much left to find anyway. Now, for some mood lighting.”

And then the power for the apartment went out.


  1. Dude, I shouldn't have read that. Now I'm freaked out... This is exactly why I don't read of watch anything Steven King does.

    Great writing though, I honestly thought someone was going to grab me from behind. Nice job :)


  2. So I read it and was really "scared", but then it was her friends and relief flooded my system!
    And then when suddenly there was someone else *gasp* and they were
    all doomed! But the end wasn't scary at all. I don't know what it was (P was scared BTW). Maybe it's because I was so relieved that she was spared (even though she wasn't), it overtook my emotions. However, I have always felt that if writers can make you change your mind about the situation completly, and be totally satisfied with the ending, they are truly wonderful! (Even if the happy ending was short lived)
    But, all in all, I loved it!
    Just don't make a habit of writing like that. I won't be able to handle it! ;)