If you are ever to get rid of Him, you have to read this and follow what I say religiously. I didn’t and now… It’s safe to say I didn’t give this to you, that you found this either in some book or online somewhere. And if that’s the case, that means He got me. Because it doesn’t matter where you go, if there’s an AC vent in the wall or ceiling or floor, it will find you once you’ve seen it. So if you want to live, if you don’t want to end up like I did, follow the rules and you might just live.

I was six the first time I had the dream. Floating through my childhood home in that liquid way dreams make us move. Down the stairs and into my high-ceiling living room. The sound of breathing – a factory-like chug-chug – enveloped me like a bad hug. I didn’t so much hear it as I felt it in all my molecules. Like goosebumps on my skin that came with their own miserable sound.

Standing in the middle of the living room, I looked up at the AC vent halfway up the wall. A faint emerald light throbbed from behind the slatted grate. It beckoned me like Pennywise’s deadlights. And I think now, writing this, that that is what they are. When he shows them to you, it’s too late.

Because this was a dream, I crawled up the wall with a fluid grace, crawled towards the AC vent. The closer I got, the deeper that breathing sound resonated through my essence until it was so loud and powerful that I thought it would cause my soul to vibrate apart into nothingness. But still, I couldn’t stop climbing towards the vent. Even though I was six, the ease with which I pried the cover off the vent was inhuman, like the Hulk picking up an infant. And I didn’t throw the cover away – my flesh absorbed it. As if this moment was becoming apart of my DNA, as unbreakable as genetic coding.

Like I said before, I couldn’t stop. Once the emerald light finds you, there’s nothing you can do to not see it. You will have to look in its eyes and then find a way to break the curse – and this time you don’t get seven days… it’s maybe two or three at most. But I think that’s what it wants. To challenge you, to make you find this “cure” and taunt you when it knows you won’t. Most people don’t. I did, but I didn’t have enough time to cure myself. It was more important to pass this on to you for when you see Him. Maybe it’s selfless, or maybe I’m hoping by saving others I can save my soul from Him, atone for all the terrible things I did when I was alive.

In the dream, I peeked over the edge of the vent, down into that metal throat leading deeper into the house. Something dark blocked the way, filling out the space in the vent like Spam in its can. There was a hiss, like a snake underwater. Like a herd of insects screaming on a summer day. I couldn’t look away because those lights don’t let you. And slowly the shape shifted, turned itself towards me like a gelatinous thing from space. Nothing human – or of this earth. A head formed in the dark and it shot up to narrow its yellow-tinted eyes at me.

Dan Aykroyd’s face stared back at me. Those ghost-finding goggles he wore in Ghostbusters sat like a second pair of spider eyes on his forehead. He smiled at me, the smile that in the movies was charming, but cramming in the AC vent was the very look of eternal madness. Dan Ackroyd slithered through the vent towards me, his body undulating like an earthworm. That goddamn smile pointed at me like a witch’s crooked finger.

My mouth stretched open and I tried to release the scream that choked me, looking like Danny Torrence in The Shining. But I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t let anything escape my body. He wouldn’t let me. His smile grew, stretched across his face like a jagged incision until it oozed past his nose, his eyes, and up almost to his hairline. I knew that smile would open into a portal that would pull me in and never let me go, tumbling me down into an eternal pit that fed its emerald pleasure.

I don’t remember waking up. That reality was too long ago. I know I did, but those aren’t the things we choose to remember – or rather are forced to remember. It’s the nightmares that stay with us until we are ready to face them.

That dream haunted me for most of my life. It became a joke that I passed onto my sister and friends and we would all laugh about it. But despite the humor I tried to put on it, something about it felt too real to pass off as a joke.

When my mom broke her hip and my dad needed help taking care of her, I flew back to my childhood home for a week or two. I worked remote so it didn’t matter where I was. I could say that I was there to help, was there to be a good son. But I was there because that dream had gotten louder over the years. My brain couldn’t quiet it, couldn’t pass it off as a humorous story to tell my friends anymore.

I had to know, had to see for myself if Dan Akyroyd was really in the vent or not.

After my mom had taken her pain meds and fallen asleep and my dad had left for the store, I went into the garage and came back to the living room with a step ladder that would put me at AC vent height. I wasn’t a child anymore, didn’t need to climb the walls in a dream to see what was out of reach then. A few steps and I was face-to-face with the grate. But like my dream, the grate came away from the vent easily – as if it wanted to, as if it had been quivering for someone to strip it off the one thing keeping it contained.

There wasn’t some grand build up, a time-stretch filled with tension that A24 movies love to force on the viewer. This was bone-snapping quick.

I looked in the vent and Dan Akyroyd looked back at me. Spider eyes on his forehead. That wicked smile across his face. He held me in his emerald light gaze long enough to say something to me. It wasn’t anything I understood. It was like a language that this reality didn’t understand yet.

I stumbled back off the ladder and fell to the floor, knocking the wind out of my lungs. I didn’t wait to get my breath back before I was up on my feet, scrambling up the ladder to put the grate back on the vent.

So you know I’m dead. I won’t spare you the details of what happened in between because they are unimportant. What I will say is that I finally understood what he said to me. It wasn’t some alien language. It was English, but it was warped through the barrier of whatever separates our world from the void beyond. I kept saying his phrase to myself over and over those first two days until I decided to record it on my phone. I had to hear it for myself without saying it. And on a whim I tried to mess with the audio and ended up putting it in reverse. That’s what it was – he spoke to me in a reverse language, as if his timeline and ours were running opposite each other. I think that’s why he can’t be stopped, because he’s not operating on our version of reality. Whereas we are progressing forward in time, always moving towards death – of ourselves, of the universe – he is moving the other way towards renewal. Growing stronger.

When I put the audio in reverse, this is what he’d said to me:

Let the ghost suck your dick. Let the ghost fuck you.

I remember seeing that scene in Ghostbusters and always thought it was weirdly out of place. That it was trying to convey something more than just a funny little perverted scene. A part of me wondered if someone making the film had seen Him in the vent and happened to let the ghost suck their dick, realizing that there was a way to break His gaze. And that putting it in the movie was their way of passing on the only way to break through those emerald lights.

A scene like that could be passed off as funny, but when faced with the truth, that scene might help you understand that what I’m telling you isn’t a lie, isn’t a joke, isn’t just something written to be consumed and forgotten. It’s a warning – just like that scene. You have to choose to believe it, even if that might be impossible.

I think the ghost only comes to you those first two days. After that, all you can do is accept that whatever end he has planned for you will happen. I wish now that I would’ve figured out what he was saying earlier. Now I’m just waiting, doing what I can to pass this on to you.

Don’t worry about finding the ghost. It will find you. Just like Him, the ghost becomes a part of you once you’re in the emerald lights. I ran from it, thinking it was a part of his trap, a way to hold me still long enough for him to put his total protonic reversal on my essence. But now I know that the ghost is attached to him – just as he’s attached to us. The ghost wants him to stop, wants him all to itself.

A part of me wonders if the Dan Akyroyd we see in movies is some kind of avatar meant to lure you into a sense of safety, to make you familiar with the shape that this AC-dwelling entity has taken. And if it’s moving in reverse time, I wonder if once it gets to the beginning of time it changes direction and moves forward, rubberbanding back and forth between the beginning of reality to its end. An eternal cycle so that it’s always here, always taking those that see it and don’t break the curse.

I’ve made mistakes. I’ve done bad things in my life. So I’m hoping I can make some of this right by passing this on to you, by saving your soul should you even see Dan Aykroyd in your AC vent and he sets his emerald lights on you. Because he’s in every house, waiting. Because he finds you when you don’t want him to. That’s what he does. That’s all he’ll ever do. Forever.

 

END… or is it?