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Wrong Place

Wrong Time

By Gerald HolmesPublished 2 months ago 8 min read
Photo by Author

The mirror showed a reflection that wasn't my own.

Or did it?

Maybe it was a different me–the one that lives in the dark corners of my dreams–the other me that always felt close to the surface, lurking around the edges of reality and waiting.

Standing above the toilet, staring at the strangely compelling reflection, I wondered who the last person to look into this mirror was. It looked like no one had lived in this house for over thirty years. It seemed to be falling down around itself and smelled of rotten wood and mold.

Why did I come here? My life was going fine right up until the nightmares began about a year ago. My shrink had said that he believed something from my past was triggering the dreams. He advised me to look into my family history in an attempt to understand what was happening to me.

Being adopted at a young age, I knew this would be a difficult task but felt somehow compelled to try. At first I got nowhere as the adoption agency refused to tell me anything. I gave up for a little while but the nightmares only got worse. Finally, after one of my worst nights ever, I woke up with the idea to contact one of those online DNA companies and within a few weeks I had an answer that led me here.

My earliest memories are of the only place I’ve ever called home, Canada’s largest city, Toronto. I had no idea that I was actually born on a small island off the coast of Newfoundland called Fogo Island.

Bang! Bang! Bang!

The mirror bounced on the wall, shaking me from my thoughts.

The cold damp breath of the north Atlantic shook the clapboards on the back of the house. It sounded like a playing card in a kid’s bicycle spokes. I could hear the wind and rain increasing in intensity as I looked down at the toilet that looked different now. It didn’t look like the filthy, unused, piece of garbage that it looked like just a few short minutes ago. It looked almost new but, somehow, not really there.

Reality seemed to be shifting, or moving, as I looked back up into the mirror, trying to understand what was happening. What I saw in that glass shook me to my core.

There were two faces now. Not two distinct faces but two faces that were melding, or morphing into one grotesque caricature of reality. One, which I was sure, was me, exuded confused fear. While the other, which looked like me but not exactly, smiled from ear to ear and looked back at me through cold dark eyes. Chills ran up my spine as I stared into those eyes and sensed him pulling towards me. I could feel him trying to join with me as sure as I could feel the piss exiting my body.

Overwhelming fear overtook my soul as the sensation of being pulled towards the mirror grew stronger with each passing second. As if we were in a tug of war, it felt like there was a rope wrapped around my body and he was using it to pull me in. Fighting for my life, every time he pulled me forward I would pull back. Each time I pulled back the mirror would swell but shrink again when he pulled. Hopelessness set in as I felt I was fighting a losing battle.

My strength depleted, I couldn’t fight anymore and with one last pull, from him, the mirror exploded into a thousand pieces. At that exact moment I felt something snap and the connection between us was gone. I felt myself falling backwards into nothingness, almost like a dream, and screamed at the top of my lungs, “Wake up! Wake up! Wake up!”


I couldn’t breathe–the wind was knocked out of me.

It took a few seconds to catch my breath before opening my eyes to realize I was laying on my back in complete darkness. There was next to no sound, only a faint sound that resembled rain from a long way off. Quickly, I tried to sit up but smashed my forehead on something just above me. Something warm was running into my eyes as I turned side to side only to find that I was completely enclosed in something. My mind tried to lead me to the obvious answer but I didn’t want to go there. Slowly I started to smell it. The smell that confirmed my worst fear, was all around me. That smell of damp earth broke something inside me and I started to scream.

“Help me! Please, someone help me.”


Glass from the broken mirror crushed under his shoes as he walked out of the only home he had ever known and into the cold rain. He didn’t feel cold, if anything he felt warm. After thirty years the time was here and he would finally get his revenge. He warned them that night that he would kill them all but they got to him first. They called it an accident as he somehow drove his car into the harbour and drowned. But it was no accident. His only brother had done it, with the help of his three buddies. It was the day after he had confronted his brother about the gang rape of the only girl he had ever loved.

Looking towards the lights of the small fishing village he could see the only pub in town and knew those pieces of shit would be there.

Annie had taken her own life two years after giving his brother's baby up for adoption. She couldn’t live with the constant disgusted looks and whispered name calling from everybody in town. After the lies that were told by his brother and everybody else in the bar that night, she was no longer known as Annie.

Slut, Whore, Pig, would be the names she would wear after that night.

A fire of rage burned inside him as he thought of the hell that Annie had endured but a smile crossed his face as he thought of the hell on earth he would bring to them tonight.

Before beginning the walk down the hill and into the village, he turned back to the house and said, “I’m sorry it had to be you, Gerald, but you should never have been born anyway. You see, the only way I could cross back to this side was if someone that carried my family DNA came to me. I thank you for that.”

Then he started to laugh before saying, “I guess it’s a case of wrong place, wrong time.”

Photo by JF Martin on Unsplash


The caretaker, Old Bill, as everybody called him, stood at the gates of the oldest graveyard on the Island trying to gain the courage to do his job. It had been almost two days since he discovered the bodies and he couldn’t get the scene out of his mind.

It was early morning when he walked into Murphy’s pub, to do his regular cleaning, and discovered a scene straight out of hell. There were bodies everywhere, fifteen to be exact, and they looked to be torn apart by a pack of wolves. Some were decapitated, some were eviscerated and some were, well, hard to describe.

But the worst by far was Billy Holmes. He was naked and it looked like his eyes were gouged out and his hands were cut off at the wrists. There was a pool cue shoved half way up his ass and his manhood was cut off and stuffed in his mouth.

Old Bill was nothing if he wasn’t dependable and knew he had to get this job done today. He’d been scheduled to do the, semi-annual, headstone cleaning for two weeks now but the North Atlantic had other ideas. He pushed the gate open and walked inside the graveyard hoping the hard work would free his mind a little. His first stop would be the Holmes family plot that had five graves but would soon have six. They were laid out in a straight line that showed the history of the family from the early 1800’s up until the most recent, which was a little over thirty years ago. They had all died natural deaths except for the last one, Gerald, who had died in a tragic accident, at the young age of twenty-two, when his car slid down the embankment and into the harbor.

As Old Bill started to clean the bird shit off of Gerald’s name he thought he heard someone calling out. He stood and turned in a circle but couldn’t see anyone near him. Just as he got back down on his knees he heard it again. It sounded like someone was saying, “Help.” The sound was muffled and weak as if it was coming from a long way off. With fear rising in his throat he placed his head closer to the ground and heard the words again, only this time much clearer.

“Help me! Please, someone help me.”


About the Creator

Gerald Holmes

Born on the east coast of Canada. Travelled the world for my job and discovered that kindness is the most attractive feature in any human.

R.I.P. Tom Brad. Please click here to be moved by his stories.

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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  1. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  2. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  3. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

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Comments (31)

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  • Audrey Lush7 days ago

    Excellent story telling! Visceral build up of tension right from the start! Well done!!

  • Caroline Jane2 months ago

    The changes in POV was a fascinating dimension to this story. As I read it I felt like I was being exhumed and placed somewhere else. It all amalgamated well and that ending was quite disturbing!!!

  • Thavien Yliaster2 months ago

    I read this yesterday and needed to make sure to comment. At first I was confused at what was occurring, but as I progressed through the story it all started to put itself together rather quickly for me. I am glad that Billy Holmes got what was coming to him. That the men who also committed such hateful crimes were also disposed of like the trash that they were. Still, I am sad that Gerald was born of such circumstances. In all honesty, Gerald's birth reminds me of two characters in fiction. The first being Jack Hanma, son of Yujiro Hanma and Diane Neil. The second being Tanis Half-Elven from the DragonLance series. Years have passed, but the resentment has grown Atrocities unleashed will thoroughly be shown Looking into the mirror a shade may bother A blood relative, for sins of the father Misdeeds of the past will be made known

  • Vivid Masonganyika2 months ago

    what a nice art!

  • K. C. Wexlar2 months ago

    Love this piece - great writing sir!

  • Christopher Juba2 months ago

    Quite daunting but a nice read

  • Heather N King2 months ago

    Whoa! This story was wild! So many twists and turns! Paranormal revenge! I’m so into this! Totally caught me off guard. Loved it!

  • C. H. Richard2 months ago

    Wow! Excellent horror piece. Each scene was well described and transitioned smoothly. Very daring to put your own name as one of the characters😊 Well done and congratulations on your top story ❤️

  • Call Me Les2 months ago

    Wow that is spooky. Really vivid. I was on the edge of my seat! Great job 👏

  • Muhammad Ali2 months ago

    This appears to be a creative writing piece, likely a short story or excerpt from a longer work. The story appears to be about a man who is experiencing nightmares and decides to investigate his family history. He discovers he was born on a small island off the coast of Newfoundland and goes to investigate. While there, he experiences a strange and unsettling encounter with a mirror, and is pulled into some sort of alternate reality where he is in a tug-of-war with his own reflection. The story then abruptly switches to a different perspective, that of a man seeking revenge on those who caused his girlfriend to commit suicide .

  • Shane Dobbie2 months ago

    Good stuff.

  • Saad Shah2 months ago

    i saw this story as it was a top pick, and now that i have read it, now i know why it was in the top picks. it deserves it, its very well written, love it

  • F.crick2 months ago

    please like,share and subscribe my article

  • Kendall Defoe2 months ago

    Yikes! This one got to me.

  • shariq2 months ago


  • Dana Stewart2 months ago

    So creepy good! Congratulations on Top Story!

  • R. J. Rani2 months ago

    Congratulations on Top Story!!!

  • Donna Renee2 months ago

    Congratulations on your excellent top story! 😁😁

  • JBaz2 months ago

    Freaking creepy, very well written. This was so deserving of a Top Story. Congratulations

  • Heather Hubler2 months ago

    I loved the change in POV! Kept me guessing and the revenge part was a nice twist. I was invested from the beginning to the crazy ending! Great work and congratulations on Top Story!! (Also, the names were fun, lol!!)

  • Nice❤️Congratulations🎉✨🎉🎉🎉🎉

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    Congrats on the well deserved Top story

  • Congratulations on your Top Story

  • Quality work as always. Great story with a lot of depth.

  • Served them right! This was such a fantastic revenge story! Well done!

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