Fandom roulette usually only counts for one fandom, but I wanted to do this crossover real bad. Since you don't need any pre-existing knowledge on The Black Tapes to read, I let it slide.
If enough people like it I might make this into an actual multi-chapter fic...
Kenopsia: The eerie, forlorn atmosphere of a place that is usually full of people, but is now abandoned and quiet.
Alex Reagan isn't scared of a lot of things anymore.
Not since she's started dealing with the Black Tapes. Murderers that can move through walls, devil cults, online music files that will kill you when you listen to them, devil cults, paranormal entities stalking young children, oh, and did she mention the freaking devil cults?
A few missing kids are hardly frightening anymore.
A whole missing summer camp is something else entirely.
Well, the camp itself isn't really missing. It stands empty and forlorn, doors creaking on their hinges, windows pasted with grime, so dark she can hardly see through them. She pushes through the rotted wood to look inside and it's nothing like she imagines. No tables set for dinner, scattered possessions that would give the impression of a home abandoned.
Instead, it looks unlived. Like nobody has been here for months, years, and yet they assured her people were here just last summer.
And now they aren't.
The cabins smell dusty, the air not circulating for a long time and Alex can feel it in the walls. The tingling sensation down her neck that she now recognizes for the dread of all things not of this world.
Or as Doctor Strand would call it: apophenia.
She opens the door and it's a bedroom. The walls are hung with pictures, vague shapes of humans somehow worn out despite it supposedly not having been long since the inhabitants left, but the bed is made and the table clean. Anonymous.
She can't imagine who might have lived here.
Something moves outside and she stops, feels the burning of curiosity in her gut but the hesitant pull of self-preservation that holds her back. Hasn't she dealt with enough shit, just because of this stupid research? Mental health decline and insomnia aside, was she really ready to risk bodily harm for a few more listeners?
Then it moved again, a shadow, and she was out, running with not a thought at how the floor might break beneath her footfalls.
The camp is overgrown and it's hard to see, like everything is fuzzy. A tent flap swings in the breeze and somehow Alex knows.
She pulls it open with shaking hands, prepared for demons or monsters or worse, but it's just a little boy. Maybe nine or ten years old with curled hair and black-rimmed eyes, skin dark yet somehow paler than it should be. And Alex isn't sure if he's alive or a ghost.
Or something in-between.
He looks at her and he's not scowling or smiling or anything. He's just looking, straight into her soul and that tug of self-preservation is back but far worse. Frozen to the spot she stands, saying nothing and it's so much colder now. The autumn air suddenly feeling like a full-blown blizzard.
It's almost worse than the devil cults.
The boy's mouth moves, slowly and wordlessly at first, until he stops. Looks straight into her eyes.
"Something fucking horrible happened here," he says.
"I know," she answers, not sure why but she does and she knows. Knows that she can't reach them, Dr. Strand wouldn't reach them.
Somebody shouts, a name, but it's too far off to hear and oddly distorted, like it comes from a broken speaker and Alex blinks and he's gone. The spot where he stood dark, like a stain, but fading quickly. Fading as all the other campers did.
Like a rip in reality that folds back into itself.
The air warms again around her, but there are pinpricks on her skin and it hurts, weirdly. Like a sorrow not her own has flooded her body and left her just as quickly.
Something fucking horrible indeed.
David still worries and Max hates it, despises it, because it doesn't matter anymore.
They are untouched now.
But he comes back and David huffs over him like it matters and brushes hands that are cold as ice over his face, as if it could wipe away the blood.
It never does.
"You need to stop doing that," Gwen says, from the corner, where the others huddle brokenly and the crying stopped weeks ago. The desperation and the trying to find a way out.
It would not let them leave.
"It's fine," David tells her, and Max knows it isn't but he'll be damned if he'll say that out loud. "Stay with the others now, please."
"Fuck off," Max breathes, but it's brittle and frail because he's scared. They're all scared. Scared of their taint and scared of never going back and most of all scared of it, that lurks in the woods still. That watches them always.
Scared that help will never come.
Not any that would be able to save them, anyhow.
Let me know what you think?