I received a strange text

This isn’t about anything especially strange that I once saw or heard, but I have had a weird experience that left a bad taste in my mouth. Let me tell you about it.

This happened about a year ago. I was going out with someone, for convenience’s sake I’ll call her Y. There was a run of consecutive holidays so I went to Y’s apartment to drink and hang out. We were just messing around and that night I ended up staying over.

When I woke up the next morning Y was gone. I found a note scribbled hastily on the back of a leaflet on top of her desk. I don’t remember exactly what was written on it, but it was something about some documents she needed to settle at work, so she was taking them back to the office. I could help myself to whatever I wanted in the meantime and she’d be back by lunch.

I looked at the clock and it was exactly lunchtime. I remember dull light shining in through the window; I don’t know whether it was cloudy or raining outside. I was kinda hungry, but the note mentioned she’d be back by lunchtime so I figured I’d wait till she got back and we could eat together.

I went to watch some TV while I waited, when suddenly my phone went off. It was a text from Y.

I ‘ l l b e t h e r e s o o n
W a i t f o r m e

The texts I received from Y were usually more lengthy, but this time it was just that. Maybe she was in a rush, or maybe she was in the car and, fearing reprisal from prying eyes, that was all she was able to get out. Y was rather timid, so it wasn’t entirely out of the range of possibility. I smiled.

10 minutes later another text arrived.

I ‘ m h e r e.

That was it.

Not only did Y like to send lengthy texts, she was fond of using difficult kanji as well. It was strange to see a message from her entirely in hiragana. Not only that, it felt a little odd for her to say “I’m here” about her own place. Something wasn’t right. Just like the first text there were unnecessary spaces between all the letters as well.

Morever, if she had already arrived, why didn’t she just hurry up? Why send another text? Putting that aside, I sent her a quick reply, “I’m waiting.”

A third text arrived.

S o r r y
O p e n t h e d o o r

Had she forgotten her key? I forgot to mention it before, but Y’s apartment building has an autolock at the entrance. You can either open it with your own key or contact the residents inside over the intercom and have them open it.

Y was a little careless and often forgot things, but why didn’t she just call me over the intercom to open the door?

I was beginning to feel more and more uncomfortable about the whole situation. Maybe it wasn’t Y waiting at the entrance at all… If she just rang over the intercom I’d be able to see her face and confirm that it was her. The autolock system had cameras in place for security reasons. In addition to that, the apartments were unable to open the lock unless someone rang first.

I sent her a message, just in case. “Did you forget your key?” If it really was Y the message would probably come across as rather obstinate, but I was worried.

S o r r y
O p e n t h e d o o r

A fourth text arrived. There was no way it was Y, it had to be some weirdo. But the name on the texts was Y’s. It crossed my mind that Y might be playing tricks on me, but that wasn’t like her at all.

My mind was running around in circles. If it was some weirdo I couldn’t let them in, but if someone else living in the building came home, the person might be able to get in that way, too. What should I do? Call the police? But nothing had happened and it was embarrassing, and it would just cause more trouble for Y and the other residents.

Two, three minutes passed. Maybe even more. I froze. A fifth text never arrived.

I heard the lock open, then the door opened. From the apartment building entrance you could see the door to Y’s room dead ahead.

It was Y.

“Why didn’t you open the door?” Y asked me angrily. I was dumbfounded. “I rang the intercom… what’s wrong? Were you watching something weird on TV?”

My face went pale. Y looked at me and laughed.

As planned, we went out for a late breakfast after, but I wasn’t particularly hungry anymore. I asked Y about the texts but she said she didn’t know anything about it. My mood soured and I opened my phone to show her the texts as proof, but when I did they were nowhere to be found.

Y laughed and told me that if I was trying to scare her I should try with a better story next time, but it was no laughing matter to me. Then she muttered that, come to think of it, she did see a woman on the first floor that she’d never seen before.

Ever since then I stopped going to Y’s apartment, and we slowly drifted apart. We don’t see each other at all these days.

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