There's a strange newspaper that's only delivered at midnight

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Familiar Face
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Hey guys. It's been a while. I know that some of you may have been wondering where I've been. The truth is that I've had a hard time processing my father's writing. Because I did something that I maybe shouldn't have...I read ahead.

I'll do my best to transcribe his writing, though I know that it'll be hard to relive the events he describes.

Here goes nothing:

After my failure to grab the Midnight Paper from my neighbor’s porch, I decided to hold off on trying to interfere with the Paper for a while. I felt like it knew me somehow, knew that I’d tried to stop it before, and was trying to distance itself from me as a result.

My only course of action right now is to keep reading and see if there are any clues in my dad’s journal that may help me understand the Paper more, and maybe find a way to stop it.

This is my father’s next entry:


Your mother and I sat in my office, the Midnight Paper sitting between us.

“You can’t read it?” she asked. She was incredulous, even then, even when I’d told her about Ty’s Paper in Vietnam. I think that she thought I had made the whole thing up. That I’d made a copy of the Paper to scare her or something. I wish that I had.

I looked at the page in front of me once again, just to humor her. Once again, the words were all jumbled up. All I could make out was the header.

“I can’t read it,” I said finally. “I’m not making it up. I really can’t.”

“Who delivered it then,” she asked. There was a sly smile on her face as if she knew that that would stump me. It did because I didn’t know the answer then. I still don’t.

“No idea.”

“You better not be pulling a prank on me.” She didn’t sound convinced though. There was something creeping into her voice then. Something like fear. Something like the cold realization that she knew me, that she knew I would never write something like that.

“This is really effed up. The stuff about families killing each other like that? Who comes up with that?”

I shrugged. “Who came up with Tree Head? Ty said that it just shows up. He also said that the articles in it come true somehow.”

Now your mother was smiling again, it was the kind of smile that says ‘now I know you’re pulling my leg.’

But I wasn’t smiling. I hadn’t stopped pacing since she’d read the article out loud to me. She’d only seen me like that on my bad days, on the days that I get to thinking about Ty and the rest of the guys that we lost in the jungle…about how it could’ve happened to me.

We didn’t talk about the Paper much after that. We just rolled it up and tossed it into a plastic bag with the rest of that day’s trash. We were busy then, it was easier to forget things. You had school. We had work. We all brought work and worries home.

Now that I’m alone, and no longer working, it’s different. It’s as if all I do is think, all I do is remember. I wish I could forget. I wish that this damn house wasn’t so empty, so prone to echoing my thoughts and my memories and throwing them back at me. But it’s better that you’re not here. It’s too dangerous. Because I’ve been getting the Paper too.

A few days after we’d thrown that first Paper away, your mother and I were lying in bed. This may come as a shock to you, but we didn’t exactly go to bed at 9 PM like you did. We had a little TV set in our room, which I’m sure you’ve forgotten. Your mother loved watching movies. She had seemingly hundreds on VHS and Beta. Sci-Fi movies were her favorite. Anything with aliens and space and laser beams. She’d sit there, staring at the tiny screen with a cigarette in her hand, with this little smile on her face. “That’s cool,” she’d say, and I'd turn around and there was a guy with a laser sword or a guy in a robot suit. I wish I could remember her like that forever. I wish that she’d had the volume up too loud, loud enough so that we would never hear the knocks on our front door. But she wouldn’t do that, because you were sleeping in the next room.

So we heard it. It was impossible not to. Whoever was knocking, it was like they knew exactly how to hit the door so that we would hear it in our room. I don’t know if you heard it in yours. I hope that you didn’t.

Your mother wanted to call the cops. She thought that the Paper was being delivered by someone who was dangerous. Someone who wanted to scare us. I think…I know, that she was right.

We decided against calling the police. If they couldn’t read the Paper, like I couldn’t, they wouldn't be as alarmed as we were.

I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to throw it away, but your mother said that we should read it. That it might give us some insight into who, or what was doing it. “If there’s a reason they’re targeting us, we might find out by reading it.” I agreed. Part of me was curious too.

Now I wish that I hadn’t. Whenever I think about that moment, that choice, it’s as if every fiber of my present being is screaming at my past self. Screaming at him to never let your mother read another Paper again. But he can’t hear me. So I remember myself opening the door, bringing the Paper inside, and handing it to your mother.

We sat in my office. The door had a lock, and as soon as your mother and I were both in, she locked it. Even then, it was as if we knew that this was dangerous, that you could never get involved with it. Why we knew that and still kept going is a mystery. Maybe that’s how the Paper works, how it grabs people and pulls them in. Curiosity can override common sense if something is intriguing enough.

Your mother cut the black strings holding the Paper together and we watched it unfold itself slowly. She grabbed it, held it up under the lamp on my desk, and began reading:


Interesting text, you could write a book or make a short movie about it, would be cool!
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