Jackson and I were sat in his attic, smoking... well, let's just say we were smoking and not get into any details, yeah? It was probably a bit after nine, the cuckoo clock in the front hall had just burped, and I was feeling mellow. And a little bit light-headed, but not so much that it mattered, right. Jackson had got the munchies and was looking for the ladder to get down from the attic and go and raid the fridge, and I was laughing at him not being able to find it.
"Shut up!" he said, stumbling over a pile of old school-books and tipping them over. "It was over here, earlier, I know it was."
"Dude, the ladder's in the corner, right behind you," I said, pointing off at random.
"Where?" he said, looking where I was pointing, and tripping over his own ankles. "Jeez, you can be a dick sometimes."
"Shut up!" I said, knowing I was wittier than he was any time.
"What is this?" he said, standing up and looking at his hands. "Jeez, I think its a dead bird or some shi--"
He stopped, something rank dripping off his hands, staring away at something in front of him.
"Nah, it'll be a dead spider," I said, because I knew he was scared of them. "That'll be spider-goo on your face."
Jackson half-turned, and I saw that he'd gone as white as powder, and that there was a sobriety in his eyes that hadn't been there just seconds earlier, and then he bolted like he'd just seen a spider. He darted across the attic and dropped down through the trap-door without the ladder. I heard the thump of him hitting the floor, and then running.
"Dude, like, I was just kidding! Bring me some snacks!" I yelled, and sat back. Something in front of me, a little way off from where Jackson had been, got bigger and darker.
I stared. It felt like my blood froze in my veins, cold just ran all over my body. My head cleared, and everything in the room came back into focus again. Just like when I get a new glasses-prescription, everything was sharp. And horrible.
The black shape, a bit indistinct, but definitely having four arms and something leathery like wings, started moving towards me, and I could hear the junk in the attic crunching underfoot as it did. I scooted backwards, still on my butt. I got to the back of the attic, where the roof slopes down and there's nowhere else to go, and realised that the thing was now between me and the trap-door out of there.
I grabbed the first thing that came to hand, that turned out to be an old silver letter opener that Jackson couldn't have known was up there or he'd have pawned it for... something to smoke. It wasn't much.
The thing lunged at me, foetid breath hissing in my face, a leathery rustle of wings, and four clawed hands grabbing at my head and body. I stuck my arm out and stabbed at it with the letter opener. The letter opener stuck into its top shoulder and slid in like a hot knife through butter. The clawed hands squeezed my head, and I pulled the letter opener down.
Silver light seeped out from the letter opener and cracks opened up all over the thing's body. I started seeing details of decay, rot, and tiny little screaming faces where there shouldn't be any, and closed my eyes. The pressure on my head fell away, the claws scraping across my skin, and then the thing had slumped to the floor in front of me, horribly dead.
I sat there shivering, trying not to breath the miasma of death and decay that was rising from the thing, and staring at the letter opener and the strange runes engraved on its handle.