Aghast - Horror Suspense Thriller Complete Novel

Aghast - A horror suspense thriller novel based on my english screenplay 'Latched', registered with Film Writer's Association, Andheri, Mumbai is starting from 17th April in blog form. The story is again, like the previous novel, is based in the western, American premises. I hope the readers will give the equal response to this novel as they have given, and still are giving to the previous novel 'Zero'

 Ch-1: A horrified Scream. ( Free Novels - Aghast )
It was a dark gloomy night. It seemed like it had rained cats and dogs, just few hours ago. And now, everywhere around in the atmosphere cricket’s chirping sound could be heard. A dog's bark echoed in thick night air, seeming to come from nowhere and everywhere all at the same time. 

A lavish bungalow was standing in isolation from rest of the town locality. On a huge tree, near the bungalow, an owl soaked in the rain water, sat. Its penetrating flitting eyes moved around and settled on a bedroom window through which the light was coming out. It was the only window of the bungalow which was illuminating, as rest of the lights in the bungalow were off. Suddenly a group of pigeons, sat at the window for shelter, flied off fluttering their wings in fear, probably sensing the presence of somebody at the window.
Since the window glasses were opaque and black in color, the interior of the room was not visible.

Was there some invisible being present at the window? 

And if yes  ... Was it trying to enter in? 

But the window seemed to be latched tight from inside.

In the bedroom a silhouette could be seen slept in the bed.  As the silhouette turned around in sleep its face turned to other side. Therefore it was not possible to make out who it was, even a male or female? On the bedside table a round glass spectacle was kept, probably the person slept on the bed would have removed it before going to bed. 

All around in the bedroom bottles of wine, news papers, magazines were spread clumsily around. In spite of all the carelessness one care was taken in particular that the bedroom door was closed and latched neatly from inside. The one and the only one window of the bedroom was also closed and latched tight as it was an AC room. Again the figure slept turned around, bit uneasily, this time turning its face to make it visible. He was Steven Smith, around 25-26, thin build, some sparse stubbles visible on his face,  eyes surrounded with round black spots formed by the spectacle. Now the being present in the room   started to approach Steven slowly and steadily. Steven might have sensed its presence, even in the sleep, because the next moment, suddenly, he got up startled. Whatever it was was standing right in front of him, ready to attack. A thick tint of fear crept over Steven’s face, he was trembling, sweating and was panting within fractions of second. Before he could react, it attacked him without giving him a second chance.  A helpless, horrified scream spread all around. And then it was silence again all over... as it was before. 


Chapter 2

There was the usual morning rush, people hurrying for the office, traffic on the road. Therefore it was quite crowded and compact, excluding a police vehicle which rushed through the crowd. The atmosphere around became tense, as the vehicle was rushing with its ear splitting siren sound. The crowd on the road split immediately to provide a way through. The ones who were walking on the footpath were looking back at the departing vehicle with curious, fearful expressions on their faces. As the vehicle departed it left a notion of tension on the road for a while yet things gradually returned to normality. 

A forensic team member was stood investigating at the open door of the bedroom. He was searching rigorously for any sort of possible evidence through his thick glass lens. Suddenly he heard the sound of shoes, somebody walking with great discipline. 
Before he could turn he heard a stern voice, “Where is the body?’’
“Sir, Here ... here inside...” He stood up straight and regained his posture as a mark of respect.
The man he addressed as 'sir' was Detective Sam White, around 35-36, highly disciplined, height around 6ft 2 inches with a very strong build. Sam went in, in the direction shown by his team member.

When Sam reached the bedroom, he saw Steven’s corpse lying in a pool of blood on the bed. His eyes were bulged out and the neck and head were left hanging to one side. His neck was cut and it was apparent from the condition of the bed that he must have struggled hard to survive. Sam surveyed around. One of his team members was brushing objects in an attempt to find some sort of clue and another other one was busy taking photographs.


His other team member briefed him up -



“ Sir the victim is Steven Smith, 25 ...”

“ Got any fingerprints?” Sam asked him before he had finished his briefing.


“ No sir... not yet” 


“ Make sure everything is covered” Sam instructed the photographer passing by.


“ Yes sir” he promptly replied.


Suddenly Sam’s attention was caught by something odd. 
He went to the bedroom door. The latch and the portion around it was broken.
“The killer must have entered in by kicking open the door. ” Sam said.
Then came the voice of Jeff, another member of the  team. Jeff was around 35, very short, fat and had a less than distinguished appearance. 


“No sir, actually I broke it. When we arrived, the door was locked from the inside.” 


“ You broke it?” Sam said in surprise.

“ Yes sir” 


“ Back to your old routine then Mr. Bell” Sam said jokingly, but not showing so on his face.


“ Yes sir, I mean no sir.”

Sam turned and threw a glance at the room’s only window. It was closed, naturally, as the room was air conditioned. 


“If the door was locked from inside, and the windows were closed, then how did the killer enter the room? “ Sam asked, almost to  himself. 


Astonished, everybody looked at each other. Nobody had an answer.


“ More importantly sir, how the hell did he escape?” Jeff said.

The detective simply gave Jeff a stern look.
Suddenly everybody's attention was caught by an investigating officer who  had recovered some pieces of hairs around the bed.


“ Hairs? Bag them and get them to the labs.” Sam instructed.



Chapter 3

Detective Sam sat in his office at the police station. An officer, Craig, then walked in and handed him over the post-mortem documents. Sam leafed through them and the officer sat beside him, briefing him in between about the post-mortem report.

“ It says that the neck cut is the cause of his death, but the post-mortem did not reveal any information about the actual weapon used for the murder”


“ Amazing?” Sam said, again, almost to himself, “And what about the hairs found at the site?” 


“ We examined those ... but they were not human hair.” Craig said.


“Not human hairs?” 


“Maybe the killer is inhuman.” Just then another officer came into the room and,  jokingly, joined their conversation. 


And although what he said was meant to be humorous, they didn’t speak for a while, rather, they simply looked at each other. There was an awkward silence in the room. 


“ I mean it must be from a coat or clothing.” Craig commented, trying to normalize the atmosphere. 


“Any clue about the motive?" Sam continued, asking Craig and completely ignoring the other officer.


“ Everything valuable in the house was intact, and we found no fingerprints other than the victims.”


“Well, if the suspect is inhuman, they don't need any motive”, the officer intruded again jokingly. 


Again few seconds passed with an awkward silence.


“ Look officer, this is an extremely serious matter here, so please, for God’s sake don’t talk nonsense like this. It’s not even funny” Sam warned the officer. 



The officer looked slightly embarrassed and Sam returned to his previous conversation.


“I've been reading the victim's file, he's got quite an impressive record. We could be dealing with some sort of revenge from an old enemy”

“If he only kills criminals...” The officer again tried to intrude between them. 



Sam looked at him with an angry glare.

“ I mean ... If he only kills criminals, at least it makes our job easier.” The officer said with no humour in his voice and using his words carefully. 


“ Remember it's our job to protect and serve...” Sam said.


“ Even to criminals?’’ the officer asked bitterly.


Sam did not speak anything; in fact he probably didn’t have an answer to that.
 
Chapter 4

Paul Roberts, a 25  year old with black, curly hair, around height five feet ten inches tall and average build, was sleeping in his bedroom. The room itself was not at all well kept with empty wine bottles, pornographic magazines and all sorts of distasteful items littered around. The bedroom walls were plastered with posters of naked or semi naked models of his choosing. His bedroom was quite similar to the Steven's, the only difference was that his bedroom had two windows, although these were also closed and latched. The windows were not closed due to the air conditioning but rather as a  form of protection. He was sleeping on a thick, soft, silky bed, and held a similar, thick, soft silky pillow tightly at his chest. He was stirring restlessly. When he felt that he could no longer sleep, he got up. He seemed to be disturbed. He strolled around the room, uneasily. He put on the slippers which he religiously kept in the corner of the room and then left.

What to do now? ...


He thought and went towards the kitchen
. He walked into the kitchen and switched on the light. Then he went to the fridge, opened it, and took out a water bottle. Quickly, due to his insatiable thirst, he drank the whole bottle in a few gulps. Holding the empty bottle in his hand, he went to the foyer.

The foyer was in complete darkness. Paul sat on a chair.


Let's watch TV...

He pondered this idea and then picked up the remote which he kept on a side table. As he switched on the TV, his eyes went wide, his face became pale and sweaty, and he started shivering dreadfully. He saw the stream of blood slowly trickling down from the top of the TV and beginning to run down the TV screen. Suddenly he got up, fumbled, and switched on the light in the room.


There is nobody in the room..


Then how did it happened..


He looked at the TV
Shuffling he ran to the telephone and dialled a number. A big piece of fresh flesh was kept on the top of the TV, which was still bleeding.
He picked up the telephone and began to dial a number with his trembling hands.
 
 
Chapter 5

Children were playing in the playground without a care in the world. Suddenly the sirens of police cars roared into the air, scaring the youngsters who ran back to their parents. Police cars were driving ferociously on the road. The cars departed with the speed with which they came and turned to the right on the next turn. 

Police cars stopped by the house, making an ear-splitting siren noise. As soon as the cars stopped, the team, under the leadership of Sam, left the cars and ran towards the house. 

" The two of you go and look around the house", Sam ordered to his two teammates.


They left behind the group and started investigating, one from the right side of the house and the other from the left. Detective Sam and the other members assembled at the front door. Jeff pressed the doorbell. It rang, but no movement came from inside. They waited for a while before Jeff rang the doorbell again before knocking also. 

" Hello? Is anybody there? Open the door!", Jeff exclaimed.


One of them knocked the door again. But there was no movement inside. Sam was becoming annoyed.

He ordered, “Kick it open."

Jeff and his two colleagues were literally banging on the door.

" Here. Push here with force", Sam advised.

" No”, replied one of the colleagues, “the latch would be somewhere here"

" Forcefully”, Jeff advised. “Give it some more force"

" Everybody just don't just be pushing. Somebody keep a guard on us", Sam instructed.
 
At last they kicked the door open. As the door opened, the team rushed in. Detective Sam was entering cautiously holding his pistol straight in front of him. The others followed him guarding each other. As they were about to spread throughout the house, they caught sight of a dreadful scene in the hall. Their facial expressions faded away. It was Paul's corpse lying on the sofa, his neck cut, eyes bulged out, head turned to one side, and the things in the hall littered around. He was also murdered in almost the exact same way as Steven Smith. It was evident from the littered things that he too had put up a fight for survival. 

" Search around in the house" Sam ordered. 

Three-four members of the team spread all over the house. 

" Search in the bedroom too" Sam continued.

Detective Sam looked around in the room. He saw the TV screen spotted with a blood streamlet and the piece of flesh lying on the top. Sam signalled for one of the investigation team members. Immediately he went to the TV and started to collect the evidence from there. Then Sam’s attention was drawn to the windows of the hall. Again, the windows were locked from inside. Suddenly something odd on the sofa caught Sam's attention. 
He reached out and touched it. It was a collection of hairs lying on the sofa, beside the corpse. 
A strange silence filled the air. One of the investigation team members came forward and bagged the bunch. Jeff was looking at the bunch and the piece of flesh alternatively. His mind... not only his mind, almost everyone’s mind was filled with so many unanswered questions. But to whom they should ask was the next immediate question.
 
 Chapter 6

 Sam was sat sipping a coffee with his associate officer, intently the serial killer case. From their gestures it was evident that the discussion going on in between them was of extreme importance. In between their speech, they were taking small swigs of the coffee in order to stay alert. Suddenly, a TV news report grabbed their attention.

“ The body of a second victim was found today, the similarity and brutality of this murder being identical to another body found earlier this week. Such connections have lead many to feel that we are faced with a possible serial killer. It is believed that the bodies have been found in rooms which have been locked from inside, however the police are unwilling to comment upon this. Whilst the city braces itself for the news of any further killings, residents near the crime scene, although shaken by the events, have been comforted by revealing the information that both victims had extensive criminal records which may be the motive for the killer's actions, although the police are at present not willing to comment upon this.”

“ Well if its media attention the killer wants, he's certainly starting to get it” Sam told his associate.

 But the officer seated across from Sam did not comment, fully absorbed in the news report.

There was panic everywhere in the city. The serial killer was openly roaming around and the police were unable to catch him.

How many more names were on his list?

Who was his next victim?

And why he was killing these people?

With some purpose? Or without any?...

Nobody knew the answers.
 
Chapter 7

Ronald Parker, aged around 25, a stylish and handsome man, was slept in his bedroom. He was stirring impatiently indicating that he was disturbed. For a while, he tried to sleep, stirring, moving, but sleep would not come. He got out of his bed, took a look around and then sat down again. He took a magazine from beside the bed, lied back and leafed through it. There was a nude figure on the front cover. 
Sex is the best way to relax, he thought to himself.
 Suddenly a loud ‘THUD’ sound came from the other room.
Startled and disturbed from his pleasurable thoughts,  he got up. 

What sound is it?

I’ve never heard it before..

Why am I so afraid and disturbed?...

Probably because of the mood I have been in today...

He went to the bedroom door, and unlocked it. He slowly opened the door and peeked outside.

After he looked around in the house, he entered the foyer, switched on the lights, and looked around. There was nothing odd or out of place. 

Everything is as it is...

He switched off the lights and went into the kitchen. 


In the kitchen, it was also dark. He switched on the lights and glanced around. Again, everything was in order.  Now he seemed to have overcome from his fears. 

There is nothing there.

Unnecessary I got scared...

As he was about to return to his room, something in the sink caught his attention. His eyes widened, fear crept over his face and he began to sweat. He started trembling. 
He saw a severed piece of flesh on the sink with blood swimming around it. Without losing a second he ran from the kitchen. He was not sure what to do next. He went to the bedroom, slammed shut the door and latched it from the inside.
 
 Chapter 8

Sam was playing golf. It seemed that it was his daily practice to play golf in order to overcome his daily stress and tensions. He placed his ball on the tee, swung back and hit the ball hard. It then shot through the air, travelling directly for the green. When the ball eventually landed, it bounced three times and trembled slowly towards the hole stopping around six feet away. Sam went to the ball. He began to read the green, estimating the slope of the ground as he had done a thousand times before. He placed his putter behind the ball, slowly pulled back and then made perfect contact hitting the ball in the right direction with the right force. It treakled up to the cup face and dropped right into the hole. Sam's face beamed with triumph. This moment of pleasure was temporary though as his mobile rang. He saw the display caller. But the number seemed to be new. 

He pressed the button and attended the phone, ''Yes'' 

" Detective Baker here" came the voice from other side.

" Yes", Sam said, placing on his glove, preparing for the next hole.

" If I am not mistaken, you are in charge of the serial killer case ...'' 

'' Yeah" 

As there was the mention of  the serial killer case, Sam abandoned the thought of continuing his game.

" If you could come down and meet me, I've got some information about the case which might be useful." Baker said from the other end.

'' Yeah, Sure" He motioned his caddy to begin walking back to the clubhouse.

Sam fixed with Baker the time and place to meet and accompanied the caddy for the walk back.
 
Chapter 9

 Sam was sat across from Detective Baker. Detective Baker was in charge of his particular police station. As soon as his phone had rung, Sam had lost all desire to play golf- this was more important. Immediately he had left and came to Detective Baker’s presinct instead of going to his own. As they completed their ‘Hi.. Nice to meet you’ formalities, Sam sat across him to listen to the information he had about the case. Detective Baker took a long pause. Though Sam did not show it on his face, his curiosity had reached to its peak. 


Detective Baker started to reveal the story, “A few days ago a case came to me.....


.... It was a beautiful town, beautiful green grass and quiet houses all around. The groups of houses seemed to be like groups of twinkling stars spread everywhere in the sky. And in the middle of the house groups was an ancient college building nestled in the town. 


In the college corridor there was a rush of students, as it was break time. Some students were chit chatting in groups while others were roaming around. John Carter, age around 22, smart, handsome, and his friend Anthony Clark, also aged around 22, were walking in the corridor, making their way through the halls like every other college students. 

John had told his friend, “Anthony, let’s go and sit in Dr. Albert’s class.”

“Are you sure? “ Anthony said back in surprise, “I mean, you ok?”

“Just, let’s go and check. Is he still here or did he leave already?” John must have said. Both of them burst out laughing as if remembering some incident.

Suddenly, while he is walking, John hints at a boy passing by. Anthony looked at him quizzically. 

“ That's the boy who's been stealing from the dorms.” John told him in low voice. 

By that time the boy had crossed them. Anthony looked back at the boy. Anthony also had lost a few things from his room. 

“How do you know? “ Anthony asked. 

“Just look at him.. Don’t you feel like he is a trained thief “ John said.

“That’s not sufficient enough! We need some proof” Anthony said.

“Alex also told me... He's seen him loitering around in the dorms late at night.” John said.

“ Really? Ok then. Let's teach him a lesson.” Anthony said enthusiastically. 

“ Yeah, one that he'll remember forever. “ John added.

“ If he lives that long.”  

Both of them laughed.
 
 
Chapter 10

It was dark in the corridor. The lights that should have been there were either stolen or broken by residents. A shadowy image walked down the corridor, slowly. And a few steps away from it were John, Anthony, and two of their friends; all crouched down, hiding behind a pillar. It seemed that they had decided today was the day to catch the thief, whatever the outcome. They were hiding behind the pillar for what seemed like forever, waiting for the thief to appear. As soon as they saw the shadow, their faces filled with delight. Finally, their efforts were going to be paid off, they thought. A joyful whispering started amongst them. 

“Careful.... this is going to be a our best chance to get him.” John murmured in a low voice, in order to encourage quietness.

They moved forward and hid behind another pillar. They were fully prepared and had preplanned, distributing individual tasks amongst them. One friend carried a black blanket with him. 

“ He's stopped... “ John said in low voice. 

The shadow stopped at one of the rooms. 

“ Whose room is that...? “ One of them asked.

“ Mary’s....”  Anthony answered.

The figure stood in front of Mary’s door, placing the key into the keyhole.

“ He has the key?”  Somebody whispered.

“ Must be a master key”

“ Or maybe a duplicate key. He seems well prepared”

“ He can’t deny it now ... we've caught him red handed.” John said enthusiastically. 

John and Anthony glanced back and signaled their friends to move forward. 

“ Come on... Let’s do it.” Anthony said.

The figure was trying to open the lock. 
Suddenly all of them rushed over to him. Anthony covered the thief with the blanket. John held him firmly. 

“ Hey first let’s beat him’’

His other friends started beating the thief.

“ Asshole...”

“ Show us where you have hidden the stuff.”

“ Uuuu ...Aaaa...” From under the blanket a trapped voice was coming, 

Suddenly the front door opened. Mary came out in confusion. She must have heard the noises going on in front of her room. As the door opened it illuminated the trapped figure in the blanket. 

“ What is going on here? “ Merry asked scared. 

“ We have caught the thief” Anthony said.

“ He was opening your door with the duplicate key” John said.

While holding the trapped thief, John felt something odd on thief’s body. In confusion, John put both his hands inside the blanket. As he put his hands inside, his grip eased and the image immediately came out. 

“Oh my God Nancy? Mary cried.

Nancy Collins, around 22 was a beautiful girl from their class. John was confused, still holding her breasts. She released herself and slapped John hard as she could.

Johns was clueless not knowing what to do next, he blurted out “I'm sorry. I'm really sorry”

“ We're sorry “ Anthony promptly apologized

“ But what are you all doing here at this time of the night? “ Mary asked in surprise, approaching Nancy and helping her to get up.

“Idiot... I was trying to surprise you. I came to wish you a happy birthday”  Nancy said in irritation. 

“ Oh, thank you... I mean sorry... are you OK?” Mary asked in confusion.

She then took Nancy into her room. As John tried to enter the room to apologize her, the door slammed shut in his face.

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