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The Secret

Updated: Jun 24, 2022

“Everyone has that one relative they’d rather not talk about. Whether it’s a drunk uncle or crazy cousin, we can all relate to the goal of trying to avoid them at family gatherings. My weird relative is my grandma. On the outside, she seems like the perfect, normal grandmother. She loves baking, knitting, and she owns an antique store downtown. But she’s wacky. She speaks in riddles and switches from overly paranoid to creepily welcoming. I have made it pretty far in life without having to talk to her for long periods of time, however today that comes to an unfortunate end. My mom had a meeting out of town, so I had to stay with my grandma for a few days until she returned.

The dread in my stomach did not leave during the entire week leading up to her departure. That morning she dropped me off at the store with my suitcase and drove away. I sighed and opened the door. My grandma stood behind the counter beaming. I almost felt bad for talking bad about her, she seemed so happy. We exchanged a few pleasantries and she took me upstairs to her apartment. Apparently, she told my mom she had a spare room…she did not. She laughed at this like it was an inside joke we had, I gave a huff and plopped down on the couch that would serve as my bed for a few days.

She gave me a quick tour of the apartment, nothing seemed amiss. Just a normal granny apartment. The one thing that caught my attention was a door with a giant lock on it. When I asked her what was inside, she hesitated, “W- well those are just my family antiques. I lock them up so they don’t get stolen in case someone wanders up here or breaks in. Both are bound to happen at some point.” With that, she dragged me back downstairs to help with the customers.

I’d never been here before, so I took the time to wander around. Pursuing the isles I saw some creepy stuff, but nothing you wouldn’t expect from an antique shop. You know, a creepy doll here, a weird-looking candle there, stuff I could brush off as unusual. The one thing that freaked me out was the collection of teeth jewelry she had. When I asked her about it, she claimed that someone donated a giant collection of them and now she’s desperately trying to get rid of them.

The rest of the day passed slowly but quietly, which I appreciated. That night I was getting ready for bed when grandma came to say goodnight, “Make sure to lock the doors and windows,” she said, “this part of town is known for its murders and we can’t have anyone getting ou-I mean in. Goodnight dear” and with that, she went to her room.

I was creeped out, but went to bed and tried to sleep. However, the ocean of dreams evaded me and I laid awake for hours. Thinking, listening, anything to occupy my mind. However, my heart spiked when I heard a door thump. It came from the door with the lock. I was about to get up to investigate, but pretended to be fast asleep when I heard grandma’s door open. I felt her come up to make sure I was asleep, and I guess she was convinced because she unlocked the door.

I couldn’t see what was inside but I heard her whisper, “Do you want to end up like them? I keep you here for a reason, but I will not hesitate to find another and send you with your friends.” I heard the door close and her footsteps to her room. When I heard her door close I waited a minute before peeking a look at her door. Eventually, I heard her snoring again and felt it was safe to investigate.

The wooden floor creaked under my feet as I approached the door. I had forgotten about the giant lock though…I looked around for where the key could be. Thankfully grandma was used to living alone and had the key hanging up next to her T.V. I carefully opened the door and slapped my hand over my mouth to keep from screaming. There was a girl in chains. Her mouth was stapled shut and she looked like she hadn’t eaten in days. She looked terrified when she saw me and began to scream through the muffled noises she could make, “No no no! I’m not going to hurt you! Please stop before she hears you!” The girl stopped screaming, but still backed away. I didn’t blame her when I looked around the room I almost screamed again. There was an operating table, next to it was a cabinet full of jars. When I saw what was in the jars I gagged. Organs, teeth, fingers, anything you could think of from a horror movie, it was here. I hunched over and had to take deep breaths not to throw up.

“We’ve gotta get out of here.” I reached for the girl and although she flinched she didn’t fight me. I noticed her feet were bound to the wall and looked for something to break them with. I ended up using a nearby brick to break the shackles. As I got her up I noticed writing on the walls. The wallpaper also changed color in different spots. I looked closer and this time I actually threw up. Every time the color of the wall changed, there was writing.

Emily Hader 4/15/18

Samuel Thatcher 10/3/18

Isabella Welsh 1/19/19

Names….and the date of their death. It didn’t take me long to figure out what it was and threw up again. It wasn’t wallpaper, it was skin. I could only assume the dates were the dates of their deaths. This girl must have known she was next.

I grabbed her hand and together we ran out the door, we ran out of the store and down the street. We ran and ran until we reached the police station. And now here we are. I looked at the police officer who was writing all this down. He looked as sick as I felt.

Through the window I could see my grandma being pulled down a hallway handcuffed, she looked at me and smirked. Then the siren sounded.

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