The Group

This story is from my friend’s journal. I know I shouldn’t have read her diary, but now I can’t help but think she’s in some kind of trouble.

Last night we went out for some birthday drinks (my birthday, yeahy) and she ended up crashing at my place. But when I woke up the spare room was empty. The bed still looks slept in which I thought was rather rude and she didn’t even say goodbye. I was so shocked until I saw her diary at the foot of the bed and her bag on the floor.

I deliberated over reading her diary, but I’m glad I did in the end. I couldn’t believe what I was reading I had to read it twice just to make sure that it was real. I’m going to post her entries underneath so that you too will understand how freaked out I am.

I just hope she’s ok.

Tuesday, August 15th, 2017

Typical start to the day, dry toast for breakfast that tasted like cardboard because I ran out of butter yesterday and forgot to buy some more. Should write a shopping list as well as this entry.

Ok done.

My beat up car nearly didn’t start again today, I sat behind the wheel praying to every god that was willing to hear me, praying that it would start. Yesterday at work, Jessie gave me a jump start after my shift I got so embarrassed I nearly fainted.

It’s now 12:05 and I thought I’d quickly write this down while everything is still fresh in my mind, it was so weird that I didn’t want to forget. Lucky I’m on my lunch break so that I won’t get told off.

I was over in the koala pen, the entrance has this lovely archway that’s all colorful and stuff even has the koalas painted on it. We have six male koalas and two females. We rotate them, so they don’t get too distressed with people handling them. I had just taken two brothers that had been getting man handle around a small group to the main cage. So I sectioned the entrance off before I went out and put up the sign saying that the gang was sleeping and that the next show was in 30 minutes. My next step would have been clearing all the mess that the koalas had made and readied the staging area where people can have the photos done was nice and tidy.

But when I came back I saw a guy standing by the stage looking about as if to see where the koalas were. I was just about to shout out that the next show was soon when this weird group of people walked into view.

I say weird because that was my first reaction. There walked in single file but unnaturally close to one another like a conga line. I’ve seen it down before when we watched some guards on parade as kids, showing how precise their unit could be. But still, this was the zoo and not some showground. What I also found strange was they all wore the same clothing, actually that not correct, their clothes were different, I didn’t mean like their clothes were the same like their wore a uniform but rather that all their clothes had seemed to have lost the color. Almost like there had all been sprayed with gray paint and not just their clothes but their skin too. Does that even make sense? I’m starting to think my mind is playing tricks on me. But it can’t be, I know what I just saw.

Anyway, there must have been maybe 15 of these weird people walking in single file towards the guy looking for the koalas when he finally noticed them.

His face was just as shocked as mine as it froze him to the spot. The group circled him and then the last person stopped until all of them had formed a ring around this guy. I can’t believe I’m writing this it all sounds so serial now that it’s on paper and I know I sound like a nut job.

They stood there for what felt like maybe 2 minutes, the guy in the middle first looked about them; he must have been thinking this was some kind of joke. Then I started to hear this whisper. It reminded me of a knife on glass, scratchy and irritable, and it seemed to be coming from the people. The guy must have heard it too because he was shaking his head like you do when a bee hovers by your ear. Then he looked at the one who had been in the lead. I don’t know how old he was but he was a lot smaller than the rest and I’d guess about 6 or 7. He moved toward the guy and just stood there staring at him transfixed.

Now, this is the crazy part. I’m sure the man in the middle was wearing a white T-shirt and a vibrant pair of blue board shorts before the group arrived. However, by the time the small boy stepped back in the circle, his looked just like the rest of them, clothes and all. He had gone kind of slack, his shoulders had slumped, and his chin rested on his chest. Then they all turned, and the guy in the middle walked up to one of the people (I think she was a girl) and joined the circle. Then there all moved off.

Let me try and explain it because it was utterly bizarre. So the guy walked up to the girl and stood centimeters behind her and then they moved together to the next person, and he joined the group, and off they went to the next until the small boy at the front led them out of the enclosures.

Does that even make sense, I’m sure he wasn’t part of the group, and this didn’t seem like a prank because nobody else was there and who would want to play a joke on me.

At home now on the sofa watching some Netflix and I thought I’d finish the day’s entry. I’m still baffled about what happened in the koala enclosures today although nothing else out of the ordinary happened throughout the rest of the day I still felt a bit uneasy with the encounter. My car didn’t start again, and fortunately, Jessie was there to lend a hand again. He’s soo cute I was blushing the whole time. Jessie even asked if I want to go for a drink something. I agreed and told him he could pick me up in his car on Saturday as I joked that mine wouldn’t make it.

Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

I woke up to some pain in my hand, not sure how I hurt it. The nail on the middle finger has turned somewhat blackish gray. I must have squashed it against something although I don’t remember doing it.

The car started again (yeah) off to work I go.

Because of yesterday’s weird happenings, I put my diary in my bum bag and carried it around with me all day, but nothing happened. My hand has been hurting, and the top of my finger has gone the same as my fingernail. It’s like a dull black. The first aider at the zoo said that it isn’t a bite so I’ve tried booking appointments at the doctors but can’t get anything in my time frame until next week. Grrrr.

Birthday drinks with —— tonight, can’t wait. It’s been a while since I’ve seen him and I’ll get to hear all about the wedding arrangements.

Thursday, August 17th, 2017

I bought some strawberries on the way home last night along with some other fruit from the side of the road. A huge punnet for like $10, so it’s a healthy breakfast for a change this morning. Fruit salad.

My finger has stopped its discoloration. Pleased that it’s not spreading anymore and that the pain has gone away, but still really nervous that it might be something more sinister.

Oh my god. I’m so glad I brought my diary with me again today because I saw that same group of people again. This time it was at the crocodile enclosure, and there were loads of people around.

Now I’m not entirely sure, but I think it was only me that could see them because I didn’t see anyone else reacted to their strangeness. You would think that at least one person would have responded to them, right? These aren’t your ordinary group of people and even when we have entertainers in the zoo people stop and to see whats going on. But no one did?

This time a girl about my age (23) was looking at Boris, our resident 660kg saltwater bad boy when they came shuffling around a corner toward her. I was cleaning out his cage at the time knee deep in water but could see clearly out the glass window. She turned around as they encircled her and she looked scared as she twirled around, probably wondering what was going on. The little boy stepped forwards again, and although I couldn’t hear that horrible sound, she must have because she put her hands to her ears and fell to her knees.

That’s when I noticed my whole hand had gone grey; I was so shocked I dropped my mop in the water and had a hard time trying to retrieve it. When I looked back up at the walkway, she had already joined the group and walked off.

I’m petrified about my hand, the discoloration has gone all the way up my arm and stopped below my elbow. I think I might go to the hospital on my day off on Sunday, and I’m defiantly going to have to either wear gloves and a long sleeve top to have drinks with Jessie or cancel on him altogether, but I don’t want to.

Just got ready for what I hope will be a fab night out. I’ve decided to dress more on the casual side so I can wear a big hoodie. It will help cover my arm and my hand. If —– asks about it, I’ll just tell him it’s a bite, and I’ve already seen the doctor. Seriously hoping it will be a good night, my nerves are shot as it is and I could really use a good drink.

Friday 18th August

Ok, Slightly still drunk but something just woke me and I’m sitting freaking out. It was like a sound in my head, a buzzing that I know not from the drink.

Omg, they here, the strange group from the zoo. Someone was banging on the door to —— place, and he’s still asleep, so I took a look out the window. I’m sure they’re here for me, it’s weird but I can kinda feel them, its the buzzing, it’s a part of them. I think that’s what woke me up, they want me to join them, they’re lonely.

I’m going to open the door.

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