Camera Feed

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9 min

Mike yawned. He wasn’t use to the late nights yet. It was only his second night shift, as far as I’m aware, and by the time he had crossed the room to grab his sixth or seventh drink of coffee from the machine just outside the office door, I was started to get irritated by him. He was a lot younger than me, about 20 years old, and the age gap annoyed me since he acted like a child most of the time. My usual co-worker for the night shift was on a vacation with our boss, since the two knew each other from college and had remained friends, so Mike was moved from the day shift to join me in the night shift.

Working the night shift as a security guard was easy. Not at first, since– well, you know, night shift. Kind of hard for the human brain to function 100% efficiently with the lack of sleep and dark shadows involved. I had always worked nights. After I had my first child and my wife went back to work, we both knew we couldn’t afford a babysitter or child care, so I stayed at home during the day and worked at night while my wife worked during the day. I had never done the day shift, but I assume it’s probably more eventful than night shifts, watching people trip over and quickly look around to see if anyone had seen them, forgetting about the cameras, or hearing employees gossip in the kitchen over the boss’ daughter’s millionaire boyfriend, or something like that. I wouldn’t know; I’m at home during the day.

Mike returned to sit in his computer chair, spinning around like a child in an ICT class in high school before tucking himself in. Caffeine. He placed his almost tsunamied coffee cup on the desk by his keyboard and stared at the monitor showing the footage of the entrance. “Hey, Luci?”

I closed my eyes in annoyance. “That’s not my name.”

“Yeah, I know,” he joked. “I was just wondering, what kinda things happen at night?”

I opened my eyes, feeling the urge to smirk, but didn’t. “Well, I could ask the same about the day shift.”

Mike shrugged and slouched in his seat. “It’s less boring than this.”

I chuckled, pressing the right button on my keyboard to change the security footage from the hallway outside the bathrooms to the kitchen. “A few things have happened.”

Out of the corner of my eye, I could see Mike sit up slightly in his seat. “Yeah, like what? A ghost, or something?”

Got him. This kid was a nuisance. I had to admit, I was bored as well. There wasn’t any harm in scaring him a little. “Or something.”

“Like what?”

I picked up my own cup of tea and brought it to my lips, smirking behind the mug. “Well,” — I took a sip– “there’s been a few times that some weird things have happened,” I lied.

“Like what?” Mike was upright in his seat now, having lost interest in actually doing his job. I kept my eyes on the screens while I tormented him.

“Well, this one time I just switched to the feed of the west hallway of floor four and I saw a shadow leaving the frame. No one was supposed to be in the building that night, since it was Sunday, and the cleaners don’t work on a Sunday, so I checked the other cameras around that area to see if I could find who it was.”

“Did you find who it was?” Mike asked.

I crossed my legs and lent back. “No.”

“That what caused it?”

I shrugged. “Probably just cars outside, or something.” Of course the story wasn’t true, but Mike seemed to believe it.

“What else happened?”

“I saw a cupboard door in the kitchen open.”

“Really?”

“Yeah.”

“And?”

“And,” I turned to smile at Mike, “one of the screws on the hinge had come loose and dropped out.”

Mike was silent for a moment. “So it wasn’t a ghost?”

I gave a quick bark of laughter and turned back to watch the camera feed, shifting to the next camera. “Nah. I did say ‘Or something’, didn’t I.” I raised an eyebrow. “You seem awefully interested in the supernatural.”

“Well, yeah,” he sheeply said, leaning back some more. “I’ve used a few ouiji boards a few times but I’ve never gotton a reply.”

“Why do you want to contact the dead?” I asked.

He shrugged. “It just sounds interesting.” He smiled. “Do you think I should bring in a board tomorrow and we try it here during the night?”

I chucked and shook my head. “This place isn’t haunted, Mike.”

Mike was quiet for a moment. I could hear him shifting his mug around his desk, trying to fill the silence with something. In the end he sighed and said, “But it is haunted.”

I chuckled. “Why, what have people been saying to you?” I remember the story my usual co-worked had told me. “Are you talking about that little girl who hung herself in the bathroom with her tie? Dude, my primary school was haunted by a girl who hung herself in the bathroom with a tie.” My voice became sarcastic. “Oh, wow, what a coincidence, so did my high school.” I leaded back, smirking. “And so did my college; so did my uni.” I sighed. “Every building in this God damn country is haunted by that girl.”

“I wasn’t talking about that.” Mike shifted in his seat. “I saw something.”

“In the day shift? Ghosts only come out at night, Mike.”

Mike shook his head violently. “No, I didn’t see a ghost.”

I looked at him from the corner of my eye. “What was it then? A demon? A vampire?” I heard him huff in frustration. “Or was it a fairy?”

“Oh, shut up, Luci–”

“That’s not my name,” I reminded him, flatly.

“I saw a guy drop dead in the IT suit.”

I stopped for a moment to think. A death in the IT suit? I hadn’t heard of this. Maybe it hadn’t caught the media, or our boss kept it under tight wrap. “What do you mean, he dropped dead?”

Mike stared at me in disbelief. “You seriously don’t know about him? It was first thing in the morning. I just sat down in here to start my shift and I saw him collapse. He died in hospital later.”

For some strange reason, the tables felt like they had turned. Was this guy tricking me? Was this guy trying to spook me out? “What was his name?”

Mike looked up and thought. “Dan Brown, or something like that.” He was lying. I chuckled. It was obvious he was lying. It didn’t matter anyway. I had the upper hand. Yes, it was true that neither of us had any real experience with the other’s job, but the night shift was obviously a more scary setting for a spooky story. I had been there longer, anyway. He was twenty; he couldn’t have been here long.

“When did this happen?” I asked.

He thought again. “About a year ago, or so. Everybody knows about it. Seriously, do you not chat to anyone?”

I shrugged. “Nah, not really. Must have missed that convo.”

“Seriously? For like a month afterwards, everyone avoided the IT suit as much as possible. They said the dude was poisoned, but they thought it was suicide since he had just declared bankruptcy since him wife had claimed all his money in the divorce.”

“You can’t claim all of someone’s money in a divorce,” I stated. “Knock it off, Mike. Haven’t you got work to do?”

Mike pouted, but reluctantly turned back to look at his monitor. He was younger than me at 20 years old and less experienced at the night shift, so I had control over him. Dan Brown wasn’t real.

Mike flicked his camera feed to the IT suit. “See?”

“See what?” I asked, looking over.

“That’s where he died.”

I sighed. “Knock it off.”

He pointed to his screen. “And there’s the doorway to the kitchen just behind.” He pointed to another door. “And there’s the west corridor. It’s on the forth floor. They’re all by where you said you saw things.”

I placed my hands to my face. “Dude, I was lying. I was trying to spook you out. It’s your second night here, and I wanted to give your the chills, or something.”

He looked at me with a confused face. “So, you didn’t see a shadow or the cupboards move?”

I huffed. “And you never saw someone die.”

There was silence for a brief moment. Mike turned away from me and took a gulp of his cooling coffee, flicking through some feed. This was frustrating. I wasn’t sure whether I liked Mike or not. He annoyed me, yet toying with him was fun, yet he pissed me off.

“I did actually see someone die,” he commented. I closed my eyes in annoyance, but didn’t say anything. He was just trying to have the last word. “I saw a man get hit by a car near where I used to live.”

Okay, so it wasn’t relevant to our jobs. “What happened?”

“His seven year old kid fell off his bike while trying to ride it for the first time and got caught under it. The dad saw the car speeding around the corner and jumped out to wave the car down but the car hit him. It stopped before it went near the kid, but the dad died a few hours later in hospital due to internal bleeding.”

I pursed my lips. “So you didn’t see someone die? You just saw the accident that led to his death.”

He shrugged. “Yeah, I guess you’re right. It just creeped me out, though.” He took another sip of his drink. “The kid didn’t have a mother. She died when he was born. No siblings either.”

I sighed in pity. I flicked through a few cameras. “What happened to the kid?”

“Went to a orphanage. Got a job.”

Something flickered on my screen as I clicked on the camera feed in the west hallway on the forth floor. A shadow. Just a car. “Got a job? How long ago was the accident?”

“About 13 years ago.”

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Glittercloud avatar
Glittercloud
10 days ago

I need an explanation please it’s going to drive me crazy, but great writing style! Thank you for the story.