There once was a teenager named Asa. She lived with her mother in a farmhouse way out in the country. The house was hundreds of years old, and while Asa was reluctant to live there at first, she had grown used to it now, turning the basement into a playroom with her mother’s help. They were happy.
But that was before her mother was stuck in a wheelchair.
Asa’s mother, whose name was Donna, suffered from a bone disease called osteogenesis, which meant her bones were very brittle. A few weeks after they moved in, her mother had fell down the winding staircase that led to the basement, breaking many of her already fragile leg bones. They had rushed to the hospital, and, after the doctor had set Donna’s bones, they went home with Asa’s mother in a wheelchair. She was adjusting slowly, but, as she said, she’d rather be alive in a wheelchair than unable to move at all.
A few months after this incident, Asa was reading in her bedroom when she heard her mother call from the basement. Wondering how Donna had wheeled down the steps, she put her book down and made her way to the door leading to the basement. But as soon as she took a put a foot on top stair, she felt her mother pull her back and whisper, “Don’t go down there, I heard it too.”
Asa jumped. “Mom? I thought you were downstairs!”
Donna shook her head. “No, I was doing laundry.”
“Then who…” Asa looked down the stairs. It was too dark to see anything.
“I’m going down there,” Asa said rather braver than she felt. She grabbed a flashlight from the tool drawer in the kitchen, ignoring her mother’s protests. She clicked the faulty light switch, hoping against all hope that it would work.
Of course it didn’t.
At least I still have my flashlight, Asa thought, turning it on. The beam was powerful, and it worked rather well until she reached the bottom stair.
That was when it it turned off as suddenly as if someone had clicked it off. Darkness engulfed her. Asa swore loudly and stumbled onto the floor of the basement. But the floor was no longer the fuzzy blue carpet of her choosing; it was like someone had filled it with an inch of water, if not rather thick water.
That’s when her flashlight beam turned on, but she wished it hadn’t.
Asa was kneeling in an inch of dark red blood.
Screaming incoherently, she splashed around and tried to find the stairs, but they were not there anymore.
“Asa, Asa, Asa.”
Asa’s flashlight turned off again. She fumbled for it in the pool of blood, but, like the stairs, it seemed as if someone had taken it. No. Not someone. Something.
The voice was sharp, like metal, like a knife.. Asa stumbled back, crawling away from the voice.
“Help, Help, Help…”
She could hear footsteps sloshing closer to her in the blood. Closer, closer, closer…
Something fell in front of Asa, splashing her with blood. She reached out: her flashlight! She hurriedly clicked it on and shined it in front of her.
Before her stood a young girl with wild black hair and pale skin. She was dressed in a drab gray dress. It’s front and hem were wet with blood. She smiled; her sharp teeth were black as oil, her gums red and bleeding.
“Hello. My name is Ida.”
Asa screamed and threw her flashlight at her head. But the girl just laughed, showing a thin pointed pink tongue that flopped out past her chin.
“Don’t try and hurt me, Asa,” she giggled in that terrible sharp voice. “You’ll only embarrass yourself.”
Asa snarled and barreled her over. Asa landed on top of Ida, their noses almost touching. Ida’s eyes were inky black, the color of her hair. Ida smiled thinly, her chapped, cracked lips splitting. Blood trickled down her chin.
“You think you can kill me,” Ida whispered. Her breath smelled like dirt and blood and death. Asa coughed and rolled off of her.
Ida sat up, calmly placing her hands on Asa’s neck. Asa struggled trying to break free, but Ida was to strong. Ida’s fingers constricted. Asa started to choke.
“W-why are you doing this?” Asa wailed, coughing, spluttering, hands flailing─
Asa’s fingers curled around the handle and she swung it as hard as she could at Ida’s head. Ida gasped and slumped over unconscious. Asa sat up, gasping for breath. Then she looked at Ida- or what used to be Ida.
The thing that was Ida was stretching, changing colors, losing hair, growing extra legs. Asa watched it become smaller and smaller, until it turned into simple black spider. Asa immediately got up and squashed it.
Asa whipped around. There her mother was wheeling down the stairs, looking terrified. “Where have you been? I've been looking for hours!”
Asa looked around. The basement was pristine, no blood.
Asa didn't eat dinner that night. She laid down on her bed and tried to work out what had happened. Eventually she fell asleep, dreaming of spiders and blood.
Asa never forgot her experience with Ida. But she got over it. She lived years in that house. But sometimes, when she was playing alone in the basement, she would hear a whisper.
"I’ll come back for you, Asa. I will."
A whisper, sharp and cold.
A whisper, nothing more.
Just a whisper.