Don’t waste time trying to open the window.
Do accept the dog food in the bowl because it also contains a drug that is somewhere between a sedative and a psychoactive. It will make what is happening easier to bear.
You are correct in your suspicions that the howling at night is not dogs; rather, it is your peers who have chosen to eat the dog food.
In the first week, I didn’t eat the dog food but then hunger got the better of me, and I ate the dog food through week two and three. I only stopped when the Captain turned the hose on me.
The Captain is making a child out of us, using the night to mould the materials we give up. Think of the Captain reaching through a shielded wall and into a pair of black rubberised gauntlets so that he can manipulate isotopes of 4AM dread.
The Captain doesn’t like to be interrupted when he is mixing the ichor and ink that will animate his child. Especially not by howling.
Howling is like soiling yourself or gibbering: the closest we have to entertainment round here.
You should try the door because sometimes the Captain leaves it unlocked for sport and then you can roam around this labyrinth, and maybe you’ll come to a room where you find a yellow shape that used to be a man and I want you to shake the hand of that thing because it’s probably me, and you owe me big style for these instructions, but if you don’t find me, then you will come to the centre of the labyrinth, a bedroom prepared for the unfinished child.
Take solace in memories of home, the roar of the stars, the footfalls of a stray cat, the rip and crunch of the grass growing.
If you discover ink leaking from your fingernails, store it in the tupperware container by the door. The Captain collects it twice a week and as long as you produce it, you will endure.
By Matthew De Abaitua.
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