The Follower

man standing on brown pathway
Photo by Isaac Weatherly on

I once found myself in a dark alley in the busy streets of the city one night.

I must have been lost in thought, or had my heads in the cloud that night, but it was incredibly stupid of me to be up and about in a city full of people, and not have my head on my shoulders. I could have been mugged, or my pockets could have been picked.

A loud crashing metallic sound made me spun around. I could not see what it was, but from the corner of my eye, a small, dark shadow scurried into the darkness.

“Rats…” I grumbled. Or it could have been cats, I reasoned to myself as I continued my walk, every so often glancing around at the street signs and lighted business signs that plastered the area.

I had this strange feeling in my gut that I was lost. How could I be lost? I have been a resident of this city for more than twenty years. I have been to almost every inch of the place… well, almost, but there was barely an area that I was not familiar with.

I started to slowly walk and tried my best to trace my steps.

Just how in the world did this happen, and where am I?

The feeling of dread crawled up from my stomach and seemed to choke me.

Breathing became difficult.

I kept walking and walking, and stopped when I realized something.

I was back in the dark alley again.

My forehead crinkled and a scratched my head.

A loud metallic clang made me turn around quickly, and then I saw a rat scurrying in the corner away from a garbage can that it turned over.

My mouth felt dry. I gulped down what little saliva that was gathering in my mouth.

I turned around and ran.

The lights and signs and people on the street were all a blur. I did not care where my legs would take me, I just want to get the hell out of whatever place I am.

I ran and ran and ran, until I could no longer run, and had to catch my breath.

I stood there breathing and sweating.

A few moments and I could somehow no longer hear my heart thumping like a loud drum set in my ears.

I looked around and almost lost the strength in my legs.

I was in the middle of a dark alley. I knew what would happen next and spun around quickly. I saw a large, black rat feasting on the contents of a garbage can. It saw me, and quickly jumped down, knocking the can over, spilling all its contents on the floor.

“What is going on here?”

Then I heard footsteps. It was faint, at first, then grew louder.

It was coming my way.

Who, or what could it be.

The sound grew heavy and loud. It was getting closer and closer.

Friend or foe? I quickly made assumptions, calculations and simulations in my head.

There was no time, I made the best decision I thought I could make at the time… I ran away.

I tried to run into the busy streets that was at the end of the alley, however when my sides began to hurt, I started to wonder how far the exit really was.

I ran and ran, yet saw no end. The alleyway kept going and going. I slowed my pace as I held on to my sides that were starting to be unbearably painful. My speed slowed down to a slow walk.

I probably would have stopped and rested there, however my eyes caught something in the distance, far ahead.

I saw a man running away.

I did not have time to think. I immediately chased after him.

I lost sight of him, but after a brief jog, I saw a figure standing in the distance. I heard  a metallic clang as I saw ahead a trash can fall over when a small dark spot of a figure jumped out from the can.

I picked up my pace.

However, when I came closer, the figure up ahead must have been alarmed by my presence, or my heavy steps, that he decided to turn around and run away from me.

I found myself standing where the man that I was pursuing earlier must have been standing. I lost sight of him. He probably was just up ahead. My mind kept wandering as to how he got away from me, when the entire alley was just  a straight path.

Clang! I heard a familiar scampering sound as the garbage can fell over.

Then I heard it again. My pursuer caught up to me! I ran again…


I hope  you liked this story.

Did you figure who the follower was?

I hope I somehow managed to make it mysterious, and yet somehow enable you to be able to deduce what was probably going on.


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Author: jomz

Web Designer and Developer, Graphic Artist. Writer.

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