What I found on the SD card

This is my terrifying story.

So, a while back I went to the department store. I sat down on a bench to have a smoke after I was done shopping when I looked over at the rubbish bin next to me. It was pretty clean and mostly empty, but someone had thrown away a mobile phone in it. I probably should have left it there, but I picked it up anyway. The fold up part was twisted so the whole thing was broken.

I went to put it back in the bin, but on a whim I checked the memory card and there was a 1GB mini SD card in there.

‘Lucky!’ I thought and took it with me. How stupid I was.

When I got home I put the card in my PC. Naturally, if you found an SD card you’d want to know what’s in it, right? I got excited, wondering if there might be any nudes or anything, and saw there were over 100 photos in it.

I opened the first one, and as I clicked through them, I realised they weren’t very interesting at all. There was a middle-aged woman and a young girl, presumably her child (not my type at all), and then some photos of tourist spots in Tokyo, Fukuyama, etc.

It was probably some old guy taking photos of his family and their outings, I figured. Just like that my excitement vanished, but as I kept clicking the next button, a strange photo popped up.

It was a dark room, and in the middle there was a woman with long, black hair standing with her back to the camera. Anticipation rose within me once more. She was naked, you see.

Excited, I clicked next, and the girl was looking this way.

But just her head.

‘Huh?’ I thought. Her body was facing the other way, but her head was facing this way. It was like The Exorcist, but even worse than that, she had no eyes! Like, they weren’t hidden or anything, the place where her eyes should be was just skin. It was smooth, like a cheek.

‘What the hell?’ I thought, but I clicked next again. The next photo was pitch black. So was the next one, and the one after that. The last three photos were entirely black, and then that was it. They ended.

They creeped me out, but I thought maybe the old guy (I don’t know whether it was actually an old guy or not) was just playing around, maybe he took them to steel his nerves so he got scared less easily or something.

I decided not to think about them anymore and formatted the card, but as soon as I clicked ‘format’ the lights in my room turned off. All of them. I lived alone in an apartment, and in the five years I’d been there that was the first time it had ever happened.

It was around 10 pm, so of course it was dark. The PC light was still on though, so it wasn’t pitch black. I look outside and the supermarket across the street still had its lights on, so it wasn’t a blackout.

‘Maybe it was the breaker?’ I thought, and when I went to go to the entrance, I heard a noise coming from the kitchen. I froze. I lived alone; there shouldn’t be anyone else there but me.

I took a deep breath. It was just my imagination. That’s it. I went down the hallway. I used my PC (laptop) for light in the darkness.

Kashi kashi kashi. I heard something in the kitchen again. It sounded like heavy foots walking across the floor. That wasn’t just my imagination. I most definitely heard something.

I screamed and ran for the entrance. I heard something chasing me from behind. I flicked the breaker switch, about ready to burst into tears. The lights flickered a few times before turning on, and I could see the hallway, white as always. Nobody was there.

The TV roared to life in the room I was just in. I timidly retraced my steps. The TV was on at full volume. The TV wasn’t even on before the lights turned off, and the volume should have been at a normal level, regardless. I turned it off and sat down, realising I was still holding the laptop. There was a message on-screen informing me that the formatting was finished. When I saw that, I don’t know why, but I felt like it was all over. I decided that sound from the kitchen and the footsteps must have just been my imagination after all.

I decided to go to sleep, but I was scared so I left the lights on. I don’t know how long I slept for, but at some point I was having trouble breathing so I woke up. It was like I was about to stop breathing. I breathed in and out a few times and went to turn the lights on when I remembered; I left them on when I went to sleep. Now they were off.

As soon as I realised, I heard a sound from nearby. Kasakasa. This sound wasn’t coming from the kitchen, it was coming from inside the same room.

Kasakasa.

It sounded like an insect, maybe a cockroach or something. I hated cockroaches, but they didn’t scare me. At least I thought it was one, but I realised the body was probably too long to be that.

My heart started beating so fast I thought it was going to explode, and it was like my ears were blocked. I thought about getting up to turn on the lights, but if it was the breaker again, I didn’t like my chances of reaching it in time this time around.

I closed my eyes and tried to go back to sleep. But the noise kept getting closer and closer, and then something brushed my face. I knew what it was immediately. It was hair. Then I heard something close by my ear.

“Who are you?”

It was quiet, but I most definitely heard it. It was a woman’s voice. ‘That’s my line,’ I thought, but I remained silent. Then I heard the kasakasa sound again, and the thing moved away.

At some point I must have fallen asleep again, but when I woke up in the morning and looked in the mirror, I was shocked. My face was covered in welts. I thought about taking the day off and going to the hospital, but before that something drew me to the PC, so I turned it on. I opened the SD card, and even though I formatted it the night before, the data was back again. I felt like crying.

I didn’t want to look, but I was concerned about the previous night’s events. As I went through the photos again that girl without eyes was still there. As I went to the next photo, the pitch black one, I noticed something. I didn’t notice it the day before, but in the darkness there was a small light. Like a small rip.

The next photo was the same. Towards the edge the black lightened up, and through it I could see something skin-coloured. I started to think that maybe, just maybe, someone’s hair was wrapped around the camera lens. What I could see through the darkness was perhaps the woman’s missing eye area.

I could have been wrong, but the moment I thought it I felt sick. I took the card out, put it into a charm I received from my mother, and ran to a nearby shrine. I buried it in the corner of the grounds and then ran home again at full speed.

I took the day off work, went to see the dermatologist and got some medicine for the welts. I relaxed at a spa for a bit, and by the time I got home I felt stupid for how worked up I’d gotten over the whole mess.

But as I stepped inside my chest began to hurt, and my ears felt strange as well. ‘Huh?’ I thought and checked the PC, but of course the card wasn’t there. Maybe I was just being oversensitive, but when I looked at the screen I saw a folder in My Documents that I had no recollection of.

I had a bad feeling, and as expected, when I opened the folder I saw that photo. All of them were there. But, I never copied them…

Unable to deal with it anymore, I took the PC to a secondhand store to trade it in. I told them my personal information was still inside, so they overwrote the entire operating system for me.

I’ve been so scared that I haven’t owned a computer since. I’ve been typing this whole story on my phone.

The welts on my face went away, and I stopped hearing strange noises. Every now and then I find a long hair in my pocket, but I think it’s just my imagination.

Everyone, you should be careful of what you pick up.

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