The Hole in the Closet
by William Quincy Belle
Table of Contents|
parts: 1, 2, 3
Jack pulled himself into his apartment and lay on the floor as he caught his breath. That had been a close call. He rolled over. Sure enough, there in the floor of his closet, just inside the door, was an opening. He had opened the door, and instead of stepping into the closet, had stepped through this hole. He looked at it totally perplexed by the incongruity of the situation.
He cautiously moved close to the opening and looked down. There was the bush. There was the toppled tree. He could see the vacuum creature wandering around.
Lying flat on the floor, he put both his hands on the edge of the opening and put his head through it. He turned his head to look around and stopped. In one direction there were no trees, and he could look off in the distance. He could see other openings. There were several of them close by, with more spread out in the distance.
Just as he started to count them, something fell through an opening. After taking a moment to process what he’d seen, he realized it had been a body. Somebody just like him had taken a step and pitched forward through a hole. Shocked, he continued to stare in an attempt to see any movement.
Jack turned his head to look in the other direction. He stopped. He had the answer as to whether others who had fallen had escaped. A couple of hundred feet away was another opening, and just underneath it was a body of what looked like a man. There was a big hole in his chest. He was certain the man was dead.
Beside the body was one of the vacuum creatures. As Jack watched, the animal began to suck up one of the man’s arms with its trunk. The trunk reached all the way to the shoulder, and then the animal turned and waddled over to a leg. The arm was gone.
Jack pulled himself back into his apartment and moved as far away from his closet as he could get. He stood shaking trying to understand what this was all about. It didn’t make sense. It was crazy.
He looked at the time. He had been gone only an hour. Suddenly he felt very tired, so he lay down on the bed. Just give me a moment, he thought.
* * *
Jack woke with a start. What time was it? Damn, had he overslept? He glanced at the clock. Oh God, he was late for work. He jumped up to go the bathroom, where he quickly brushed his teeth and shaved. Back in his bedroom, he tore off his pyjamas and grabbed some socks and underwear from a dresser drawer.
His spied his cellphone on the dresser. He picked it up and checked for messages. There were none. He set it back down and pulled open the closet door. Just as he began to take a step into the closet, he panicked. He shifted his balance and moved his leg all the way to the back of the closet and stood there doing the splits, with one foot in the bedroom and one foot under his hanging clothes.
He looked down at the floor. It looked perfectly normal. He grabbed the door jamb and pulled himself back into the bedroom, then got down on his hands and knees and began to touch the floor of the closet. It was solid. Nothing looked unusual.
Jack stood up and, balancing himself, put one foot on the floor of the closet. It seemed to be okay. He tentatively lowered his foot to the floor and slowly put more weight on it. It was holding. The floor was really there. Standing there for a moment, he stared down at his closet floor. He doubted his own eyes. Had it all been a dream?
Shaking his head and chuckling, he started grabbing clothing. He hopped up and down in front of the closet as he pulled on one pant leg and then the other. He had some shirt buttons to contend with, then a belt, and he was good to go. There wasn’t any time for a coffee, so he would have to grab something on the way. He picked up his cellphone, keys, and briefcase and headed for the door.
Just before he opened the apartment door, he glanced at his phone and scrolled through his various news feeds. The same old, same old was trending. Cat found in tree, film at eleven. As he scrolled down, he saw somebody had written about a mysterious hole. What the heck was that? He scrolled some more and found two more entries that mentioned strange holes. Were they the other holes he had seen?
Jack opened his apartment door as he studied his phone. This was incredible. Other people had experienced the same thing, going through a hole into another world. He had to find these people to see if he could figure out what had happened to him.
Jack took a step, then pitched forward and fell out of sight. There was a moment of silence in the hall before Jack’s muffled voice from somewhere below said, “Ah crap, not again!”
Copyright © 2014 by William Quincy Belle