Putting the Pieces Together

By: Amber Lam

I don’t get scared easily. Sure, I’ll freak out when a spider crawls out of nowhere; but when it comes to monsters or the supernatural, I’m unfazed. Maybe it’s because I don’t really believe in the horror being presented to me. Or perhaps it’s because I don’t empathize enough with the victims.

It’s amusing when I’m watching a horror movie and I’d sit there and laugh at all of my friends screaming in terror. But sometimes, I wonder if it’s strange. Being afraid is only human.

So far, the Dionaea House is the only horror story that really resonated with me. The interplay between the modern platform and the storyline added to the thrill. But reading about the effects of the house really got me thinking about my own house.

Back when I was in first grade, my family and I moved from a one-story ranch to the two-story suburban home we live in now. Ever since I can remember, something was always off with my room.

When we first moved in, I noticed strange furniture prints in the carpet. I didn’t notice any other prints in the house; only one in what was going to be my bedroom. The print I found was a small rectangle, divided into eight identical squares, directly in the center of the room.

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The piece of furniture was probably two feet long and one foot wide, placed perfectly parallel to the walls. At the time, I didn’t think too much of it. I was too busy being excited about moving into a bigger house and a nicer neighborhood.

When it came time to furnish my room, we placed a queen-sized bed over the lines. Growing up, I didn’t think very much of them, despite how often I’d glance at them every time I looked for something I stored away underneath my bed.

Another thing I could never wrap my head around was the access to the attic. It was just a square in the ceiling of my sliding door closet, but the cover always remained a little cracked. No one has gone up there since we’ve lived there. I’d always look up at it every time I went to pick out an outfit. That tiny sliver of darkness had my imagination constantly running. It looks exactly the same now as the way I first remembered it.

Other than the kitchen and bathrooms, my room was the only room in the house without a ceiling fan. Just a simple light fixture, like the following:

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I’ve never paid much attention to these things. Not until recently, anyways. Coincidentally after reading the Dionaea House, my mom mentioned to me how she’s been hearing some noises late at night. She’s the only one living in the house now. My brother and I are away for the school year, and my dad recently passed away. She told me he used to always come home early to ensure he was there for her when night came. He knew she was afraid of ghosts and monsters.

All of this new information had me reflecting upon my life thus far. There were times I thought I heard things, or thought I saw things, while trying to fall asleep at night. These occurrences happened more frequently when I was younger and smaller, when the world had seemed like such a big place to me. They say that children are more susceptible to the supernatural, so maybe that’s why I noticed these more of these oddities then.

But most of all, I’ve realized that someplace in my subconscious, I’ve been always been afraid of knowing too much—of discovering something I wasn’t supposed to uncover. I always brushed off the abnormalities as if they were nothing out of the usual. As Cohen said in his monster theses, “Curiosity is more often punished than rewarded.” Somewhere along the lines, I picked this up from the horror movies I’ve seen and scary stories I’ve heard.

With my dad gone, my mom wants to move out. Knowing that we’ll be saying goodbye to my childhood home soon, I can’t help but want to explore the very unknown that I grew up running away from.

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3 thoughts on “Putting the Pieces Together

  1. This is very interesting to think about! It’s amazing how we can go day to day not thinking about random lines in the carpeting or something peculiar in our house because we grow so used to routines and forget to notice details after a while. However, when you actually focus your attention on something in particular, you realize it is off. There are many horror movies and other books and readings we have studied in this class that make me question certain happenings in my life. I would definitely want to explore your hidden attic more before you leave.

  2. First off, I’d like to say that this is an extremely reflective and insightful post. The idea that you have discovered a desire to “explore the very unknown that I grew up running away from” stuck with me. Ultimately, this post is not really about horror but about fear. It speaks to the fact that it is human tendency to deny the sources of one’s fear and ignore delving into their roots. Although for me this doesnt take the shape of supernatural fears, as it ultimately did for you, I can identify with the feeling of running and returning. On another note however, it is interesting that Dionea House was the most frightening text for you yet. Although I very much enjoyed it, it did not disturb or unnerve me. It’s interesting how people react differently to horror.

  3. When it comes to creepy stuff I react in the same way. If there is something off, I choose to ignore it or assume its normal. In most cases people who find get into trouble with the supernatural its there fault. They either venture out too far due to their curiosity, which leads to them being in the center of supernatural problems. However, for people like us, there is always that what if question. That’s what makes the curiosity worse then ever now that your family wants to leave. It takes a certain type of character to go looking for solutions that deal with the supernatural genre.

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