“Staring” Alice thought to herself “Why is this woman staring at me?” It was early, and Alice commuted to work by bus. It was often busy, and many looked at their phones or the windows without giving much mind to their fellow commuters. However on this trip, the elderly woman who recently sat across from her would stare at her wordlessly. Alice gave a nervous “Hi” but was not greeted back. So she sat there, tapping her feet, looking at her phone, doing anything not to look back at the petite white haired old woman. Once her stop neared she quickly pulled the yellow string that signaled the driver to stop and got up. She barely waited for the bus to open its doors before jumping off.

Working at a restaurant was stressful enough but it always felt like the other staff where out to get her. Often stealing her tables, or gossiping behind her back. She once asked her manager about it, but only got a “Work it out between you” as a reply. After clocking in, she could hear her coworkers giggling behind her, she turned towards them and they turned and walked away. This went on through the night. Her paranoia was made worse when as the tables she waited acted strangely. All day she caught the costumers staring at her from the corners of her eyes, they would quickly look away once she made eye contact. She could feel eyes on her constantly. The anxiety was becoming too much as she retreated to the bathroom. Washing her face and taking deep breaths. The noise of footsteps turns her attention to the door; she moves into a stall and locks the door.

Her blood boiling Alice holds in a scream of anger. She can hear the muffled sounds of voice outside the restrooms. She know they had to be talking about her, she felt like she could feel there uncaring hate. Her breathing was growing heavier and her head pounded in pain. She wanted to cry, but that only give everyone more ammo to insult her. She slowly gained the courage to step out of the stall, when she noticed something, or someone ahead of her. The creature looked humanoid in shape and size, but hideous growths where on its face.  She remained still for a moment before noticing the sink under the monster, it moved with her as she touched her face. The glass of the mirror shined with the lights of the bathroom. She quickly ran to the sink and tried to wash them off her face, the dark wart like objects would not wash away. Panicking she started to dig her nails into her face cutting and ripping at them. However the objects now looked worse than before.

Alice burst out of the bathroom with one arm trying to cover her face; she felt the eyes of everyone in the restaurant as she ran for the kitchen. She could hear the yelling of a chief, but ignored it as she grabbed a knife off magnetic strip that kept it in place. She ran back to the bathroom, this time with panicked looking cooks after her. Once in front of the mirror she hurriedly started to cut her face, peeling chunks of skin off like the shavings of an apple. She felt a force tackle her to the ground and yelling “What are you doing!” Her mind soon went blank; before her sight went black she watched a hand pull the knife out of her clenched fist.

Alice was unsure how long she been out, her face itched. She went to scratch but could not move her arms. The room was bright, and she could see straps holding her hands down. Looking around she noticed an older woman in a light blue uniform, and a white coat over top of it. Alice felt defiant towards her current situation. Her mouth was dry, and it hurt to speak. However she managed to speak “Did I get them off? I just wanted to stop them from staring at me. Did I get the things off me?” The doctor frowned at her and pulled out a needle then injecting it into an IV feeding into Alice’s arm. “Am going to give you something to rest” She said with a pitying look on her face.


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