by Leandro Almeida

Have you ever gotten the feeling someone is watching you? Those chills down your spine? That sense of unease, or the prickling on your neck? Objects no longer in the spots you left them in? If you have not, I envy you. I constantly live with these feelings, and let it be noted. I live alone. I do not blame this on the supernatural, on the contrary. I believe it to be a physical person, to be exact, my neighbor, Victoria. A short, round, blonde woman, who always finds a way to insert herself into my life and I into hers. Today, however, I plan to find out if my suspicions come with reason. 

I sit by the window and watch as she gets in her car and leaves for work; as she always does. Six days a week. From nine in the morning till five in the afternoon. As soon as her car turns the street corner, I head out of my house and over to her front door. I reach into the flowerpot next to her door and grab the spare key she leaves there. I unlock the door and walk in, taking a moment to look around at my surroundings. I will give her one thing. Her house was as clean as it could get. Her vinyl floor was spotless. The painting and pictures on the wall were all centered and evenly spaced. Not a spec of dirt to be seen on her white couch. Everything in their proper places and in proper order, as all things should be. 

I head up the stairs and down the hall, stopping at the second door on the right. I walk into her bedroom and look around. Her bed was pushed back against the back wall, facing the door. Two sliding doors leading to her closest, were on the left wall, and a small desk, with little knick knacks on it sat at the right corner of the room. Nothing had changed. I walk over to her closet, sliding open the door. I met with, as usual, neatly hung clothes, a few cardboard boxes on the ground, and some undergarments folded on the shelf above, but now there was a new addition. A shoe box labeled memories also sat on the shelf. I grab the box and place it beside me as I sit on her bed.

I open the box and find that inside contains a journal and multiple polaroids, each one with a label on the back. I pick up the one that said first date. I turn it over to find a picture of myself sitting at a restaurant with a woman, except her face was crossed out by a marker. The next picture was labeled third date with a smiley face after it. I turn it over. My heart skips a beat. My hand begins to shake, and I can no longer control my breathing. The picture was of me and Victoria lying in bed together, naked, as she clutches my lower half in one hand. I flip the box over, the pictures scattering on the ground. Each and every one was of me. In the shower, at work, even at my parent’s house. My stomach began doing flips as I look towards the journal. I open the journal to a random page and begin reading.

Dear Diary, Today I decided to be a good little housewife and help my husband around his house. I washed his clothes, making sure to squirt some of my love juices on them so he can always have my sent. I washed each of his dishes today, licking off any leftover food and giving it a good old spit shine. I also…,
The list went on and on. I cover my mouth with my hand as tears begin to form in my eyes, “ This. This is be-”

“Beautiful,” interrupts a voice from behind me.

 I let out a gasp as I turn around to meet the voice, but before I manage to see who it is; I feel a sharp pain against the side of my head. My vision goes dark and I lose consciousness.

My eyes flutter open and I find myself staring up at the ceiling. I attempt to move, but feel the sharp pinch of the rope around my wrists and ankles. I fight the throbbing pain in my head and look around noticing I was in my bedroom. The bedroom door opens and I see the familiar round siluet of Victoria walk in. 

She walks over placing a hand on my chest. “Good morning, honey. How was your nap?”

I stared at her at a loss of words not knowing what to say.

She lets out a slight giggle and says, “Oh, you must still be shocked by all the photos and from what your read in my journal.” She places her hand on the spot she hit me. “I hope I didn’t hit you too hard, to ruin that brain of yours.” She pulls away from me and walks over to my closet. “Well, I don’t need you to say anything right now anyway, so just listen. You and me, we are going to leave this town and go somewhere they won’t ever find us. To where I can have you all to myself. So let’s make your bag.” She opens my closet and begins to pull out some clothes, but stops when she sees a box labeled memories. She holds it in her hand. “Funny you have one of these too? Let’s see what’s inside.” As she opens it and starts looking through each of the labeled polaroids and reads each of the journal entries about her, her eyes grow wide.

She snaps her head towards me, the look of surprise. written on her face“W-why are you smiling?”
A sinister grin spreads across my face. “I’ve been watching too. Darling.”

About the Author:

Leandro Zorzetti-De Almeida, lives in Sacramento, California and enjoys playing videos games, playing with his dog, and reading.