Paranoia. Short Story.

Hope everyone had a good weekend. Mine was pretty fun, went to a dog show on Saturday morning, first time ever at one of those things. Wen with my sister so she could find out more about Irish Wolfhounds. It was interesting, though I would never enter a dog I owned in one of them. It was pretty cool seeing the Wolfhounds, there were maybe twelve or so of them. All pretty friendly dogs, as expected.

On with the show!


It was following him and it had been for a few weeks now. He hadn’t seen it yet, but he didn’t need to see it to know it was there. He would sometimes catch glimpses out of it, from the corner of his eye, passing through the shadows, staying just at the edge of sight. It was fast, faster than his eyes could follow, it was the only explanation of how it was able to stay out of his vision for so long. He didn’t know what it wanted from him, but he suspected that it wasn’t something good. Most likely he was supposed to be its prey, though it hadn’t yet attacked.

He hadn’t been sleeping well since it had started, which to him was understandable, after all he was living in fear. he would have horrible nightmares where dark twisted things  shredded him apart, feeding on him, but he couldn’t stop it, couldn’t run, couldn’t do anything but feel it tear into his flesh. He would wake up, sweating and panicked, to find himself in his empty room, alone. Once or twice he woke with scratches across his stomach and chest, but they were faint and seemed to be self inflicted. For him it was the waiting that was driving him insane, he wished the damn thing would just attack him already, get it over with. It was difficult to go about his every day tasks with that damn thing stalking him, it was horrific. He could never relax and any time he started, it was there. If it attacked he might have a chance, he could face it head on, maybe even win if he was lucky, but this, this was just torture

He had started setting traps around his house, just in case it tried to break in when he was sleeping. Loaded shotguns facing the windows, spring loaded knives to fire at the doors. The only door he left unprotected was the front door, as it was the one he used. He knew it wouldn’t come in the front door, it was too sneaky for that, it would slink in during the night, breaking in one of the back windows, he was sure of it. If it tried to get in it would be injured, though of course there was the fear that it would be too fast, that it would be able to avoid the projectiles, the buckshot.

He had stopped sleeping. Now he just waited, watching the doors. If it was going to attack him, it would be at night. After he had this realisation, he couldn’t sleep at night. He had quit his job and slept for short periods during the day. He couldn’t afford to have a job at the moment, it was too much of a distraction. He wouldn’t allow it to kill him, he would win. He couldn’t rest until the damn thing lay dead at his feet.

He died, three weeks later. Entering his house through the backdoor, convinced it was waiting for him in the sitting room, forgetting all about the traps he had set. Four officers were wounded while searching his house. There was no sign of foul play or forced entrance, an open and shut case. He was just some crazy bastard who had given into his madness. The world moved on, it didn’t mourn him and soon he was forgotten.

The creature savored its last meal, that was always the problem with feeding on paranoia, it was an endless cycle, once started it would build and build until the victims self destruction. It needed a new food source, soon it would find sustenance. It moved through the shadows, almost too fast for the eye to see, hunting.


About Alan James Keogh

I am a 26 year old writer who somehow tricked U.C.D. into giving me not only a degree in English and Classical studies, but an Hons Masters in Creative Writing too. Visit my blog where I post short stories twice a week (Monday and Wednesday) and an installment of a serialised novel on Fridays. I did consider writing this in the third person, as though it was written by someone else, but Alan is not comfortable writing in the third person as it seems kinda creepy and unbalanced so Alan decided it was probably best to write in the first person. He hopes it went well for him.
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One Response to Paranoia. Short Story.

  1. Marthin says:

    It’s interesting. This would be in the list of my first read 5 Short Stories. I’m gripping on reading stories. Wish you luck in your Creative Writing Program. 🙂

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