Jay didn’t know what to do, he was frightened and alone in the dingy, darkened. concrete radar station. The plastic chain wouldn’t let him move more than five or six feet in any direction. He scanned the room again looking for anything he could use to cut the chain. There was a workbench covered with electronic components and a soldering iron that was still plugged in, but it was across the room. He was in a small stall facing the televisions, there was nothing on the floor except dirt. Jay stared at the pyramid of televisions, it reminded him of a shrine like he had seen in church except the shrine in church had been made from white candles. The T.V’s were plugged into a series of power strips that led away towards the back of the room. He could tell from the glowing red lights that the powerstrips were on. He wondered where the heck the power was coming from way up here in the middle of nowhere. The teen also had no idea how long the man would be gone or when he’d be back.
Jay sat down, he was exhausted and his fingers stung from the abrasions caused by the concrete wall. He put his fingers in his mouth and sucked at the stinging scrapes. Suddenly the televisions flickered on to a blue screen. Jay looked around wondering how they had turned on by themselves. He pulled at the zip tie chain as hard as he could again hoping to break free, but it still wouldn’t budge. The only thing he could think to do was to chew through the plastic. The teen put the thick braid that connected his two hands together into his mouth and worked the plastic back and forth against his front teeth. After working at the plastic for a minute or two Jay pulled it out of his mouth to check his progress. He had barely dented the hard plastic and his teeth had started to hurt, like when he was in first grade and he was dying to lose a tooth. He had tried to wiggled them to impress his classmates, but none of the teeth had been ready to come out.
The buzz of the televisions had started to give Jay a dull headache. part of him wished that something would come on to change the monotonous noise. He walked all the way to the right to increase the angle of the chain and pulled again, but it hadn’t made any difference. The teen leaned against the wall and slid down until he was sitting. The sound coming from the televisions started to change. A rhythmic beep came from the speakers followed by a man speaking in a foreign language. Jay couldn’t understand the words, but it sounded like names.
“Natasha, Mikhail…Anna, Ivan.” The voice was followed by static and a man speaking some kind of hard, eastern European gibberish. The tone sounded like the emergency broadcast thingy that always interrupted Jay’s cartoons. The scared teen stared at the televisions, but there was no change in the picture. It was still the same blue glow like a DVD player that hasn’t been given a movie to play. The blue screen remained for twenty minutes, before it changed to fuzzy, static and snow. All the screens were the same, the sound was still set to the man talking, but the picture was just fuzz. Jay closed his eyes and prayed he’d fall asleep, but every time he started to drift off the tone would blare and startle him awake. He began to panic again.
“Help me Somebody help me !” He screamed, standing and pulling at the chain wildly. The teen felt like he couldn’t breath he needed to get out of the foul smelling, musty room. The whole place smelled like rotten eggs, he need to get out, his mouth tasted coppery and he thought he might pass out.The teenager took some deep breaths, in through his nose out through his mouth. Slowly he calmed himself back down and sat against the wall again.
The picture finally changed now it was a black and white image of an old man stepping up on a brown wooden chair. The man was looking at the camera, he reached up out of the frame and pulled something down from above him. It was a yellow plasticy looking rope, which had been tied in a hasty looking knot, the yellow cord formed an open circle like a noose. The sound was the same…
“Beep, Yuri, Vladimir…. Beep.” The shaking teen watched in terror as the man on the screen smiled and placed the noose over his head. Jay had never saw a smile like that, it was as if the man had just been told a sick joke by evil itself. His teeth were brown and snaggled, at least they appeared brown on the black and white T.V. The old man moved in jerks and stops like he was being filmed with a strobing effect, taking his time enjoying the moment, enjoying the act, and enjoying the distress he was causing the viewer. Jay started talking to the screen, talking to himself.
“Don’t please don’t, I don’t want to see this.” Jay closed his eyes, but the image inside his head seemed worse than the image on the screen. He also had a strange fascination like he needed to see what was coming next. The elderly man tightened the knot around his neck. His white hair was squed in curly puffs at the side of his head, He licked his hands and matted down his hair making sure the gray, part in the front was divided perfectly. He smiled again into the camera, Jay knew he would never forget that smile, never erase it from his mind. It was like the smile had been branded with a hot iron deep inside him.
The old guy took his time and then pointed at the camera, pointed at Jay. then he stepped forward off the front on the chair. The rope held tight and the man swung back knocking the chair over. The man was like a pendulum on Jay’s grandmother’s old clock swinging back and forth struggling and gyrating against the rope. The old man’s face turned dark, Jay could only imagine that it was deep red or purple. The senior citizens eyes bulged out, like they would pop from his skull. After a few seconds of the old man kicking and fighting Jay watched as his body went limp. The camera focused in on the man’s pants and Jay could see a dark spot spread over his zipper and down one leg as the old man emptied his bladder. The camera pulled back showing the entire scene in full view. The man was dead, hanging like a slab of meat in a slaughter house. The picture went back to the static snow and then changed again to the blue screen. The sound never switched up, the same tone and static followed by the deep voiced man.
“Alexie, Galina, Vitaly…..Beep.”
Jay tried to close his eyes and sleep again, but the combination of the tone and the image of the old man’s face caused some kind of sensory overload jarring him awake every few moments. Jay felt like the fuses inside his brain were blowing, some electrical signal in his synapses had accepted too much stimuli. After a few minutes the strange feeling decreased to a diluted hum.
Just as his head had begun to feel normal the static returned to the television screens. Jay begged for the sound to change to anything other than the foreign names, but it hadn’t. The picture came into focus, but this time it was in color. On the screen was a large woman with a bizarre contraption on her head. Jay could tell it was a woman, because she had gigantic, fat breasts. She was wearing a flowered dress and covering her face was a mechanical device that looked like a silver metal box with heavy clamps attached to screws on the sides. The clamps were connected to jumper cables which ran down the sides of her arms and out of the picture. Another rubber cable came out of a circle in the front and led down to a black remote control with a big, round, red button in the center. The woman held the remote control in her hands which was lying in her lap. The room behind her was stark white, it resembled a doctors office sterile and bright. She was sitting in some kind of black leather dentist’s chair which had foot rests at the bottom that were connected by rusted metallic bars. Her feet were covered in tied burlap sacks that seemed badly out of place and much too big; they didn’t fit with her pink, yellow and blue flowered dress. Hanging on the wall behind the woman was a lighted box with X-rays of a skull lit up in fluorescent green. Beside her were counters which looked like they were full of medical utensils, an assortment of scissors and tweezers.
Jay watched in dread as the woman raised one hand, balled it into a fist and then pointed one finger down toward the red button. The woman started to move in jerks and stops just like the old man in the first video had. She slowly moved her pointed finger downward directly in line with the button. Every few seconds she would move her finger down a couple inches. Again every movement was clipping and strobing almost in perfect timing to the man on the speakers. For Jay it was excruciating, it was like being tortured slowly by some chinese water method that he had read about in one of his war books. The chinese would drip water on a man’s forehead slowly at one minute intervals for days on end, by the second day each drop of water would feel like a sledge hammer slamming down. That’s what the teen felt like now, he thought he might go crazy if this didn’t stop. He closed his eyes again trying to block out the image, the problem was he didn’t know what would happen when the woman’s finger hit the button. He could assume and imagine, but what whatever he envisioned seemed far worse than the reality on the screen. Curiosity won out and jay opened his eyes, the woman’s finger was only a few inches above the button.
The woman’s hand had begun to shake and slowly in jerky hitches she pushed the button. Her body tensed up as an obvious electrical current raced through her body. Her legs thrashed wildly splashing water out of the burlap sacks tied around her feet. Thick blackish red blood flowed down her neck from under the contraption. Her body was frozen in some tightly shaking seizure. Then as quickly as it had started it all stopped, the lady’s body went slack and for a moment nothing happened in the picture. The camera was still and continued to be focused on the woman’s body when the intense charge raced through the woman again. This time a yellowish smoke drifted up from under the mechanical device and what looked like gallons of blood poured down from the mask staining the bib of her dress crimson. The woman had tensed up again, but then like a light switch flipped off it all ended. The picture was just the woman sitting in that chair covered in blood. A pool of pink water that had mixed with puddles of blood had formed on the floor beneath the black leather foot rest. The picture on the television stayed that way for what felt like hours all the while the tone and strange speaking continued in the background.
Jay turned his head and stared at the wall, he found himself reading the bizarre graffiti out loud.
“Conn-Fusion” he said “Mix-Rix, Government, Hubble telescope, Megahertz, Mega-hurts.” Nothing made sense, Jay turned his head and looked at the far wall, this wall was covered with crazy quotes that were painted in rows like a mad-man would stencil a border on the wallpaper in his bathroom. Jay read the quotes out loud, it kept his mind off the picture of the bloody woman on the screen.
“If your hate could be turned into electricity, it would light up the whole world.” Jay said then looked to the next. “If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.” Reading the quotes actually seemed to ease the corroded feeling within Jay’s mind. As he read the television switched back to static, which was followed by the familiar blue screen. The teenager ignored it.
Jay could hear movement and screaming outside. The Man With the White Face must have returned with Jay’s “Company.” The heavy particle board door slid back allowing a full view of the white faced gluebag. The bright sunlight from outside hurt Jay’s eyes forcing him to squint. The white faced man was carrying a kid under each arm, like two sacks of wheat. The kid’s looked so scared, Jay knew the feeling well. The man hauled them in kicking and screaming just like he had carried Jay in.
Jay was confused, the story had always said that the Man With the White face only took two victims per summer…