To start off, I’d like to give you some background to how I ended up working the night shift of a security job at a pharmacy in the middle of nowhere.
Being fresh out of high school with no immediate plans to go off to college, I decided that getting a job would be worth while. I live in a small town just off of a highway in the mid west United States, and when I say small, I mean small. Our population’s no more than 700. As you can imagine, in such a tiny community there aren’t too many well paying jobs, especially for someone with only a high school diploma.
Luckily for me, my grandfather owned and managed his own 24-7 pharmacy/drug store, and was more than happy to offer me a decent salary job as a security guard. He called me up one morning, and said that he had an “opportunity for some cash.” For reference, I’m a fairly mesomorphic guy, and I stand a little over 6’3″, so I wasn’t at all intimated at the thought of doing a hands on job like that. He continued, telling me that I’d have to work the night shift, from 7 PM to 7 AM. I already was sort of a night owl, so I had no problem being fit into the night time shift. He made the job sound easy enough. I’d receive limited training from the senior security guard, a quiet guy named Don, and all I’d need to do is make rounds around the building, making sure no junkies are trying to steal their prescriptions worth, or anything like that. Eager to start, I agreed, and 3 hours later, I started driving to the building.
The pharmacy was in a real weird location. 13 miles down the highway from my town, there was a little strip mall directly off the road. It consisted of my grandfather’s pharmacy, a now-deserted Burger King, a cheap run down motel, and a gas station. The pharmacy was the largest of the buildings in the strip mall. It was maybe half the size of your average Wal-Mart, and it was at the far end of the lot, closest to the woods bordering the strip mall and the highway.
I arrived at 4:30 in the afternoon. My grandfather and the aforementioned Don were waiting out front, and greeted me when I stepped out of my car. After signing some paperwork, establishing direct deposit info, and basic training of how to perform my tasks, use the security equipment, and checking the camera recordings, I was good to go for my shift. All through out the training, Don was very quiet, and seemed distant or solemn. He was constantly looking off into the woods bordering the pharmacy. Whenever I tried to follow his gaze though, I couldn’t see anything. I remember this next part in great detail. Right before it started, my grandfather pulled me aside and told me this in his uncanny country accent: “We don’t get many visitors out here, son. Still gotta keep yer eye out though. If ya see any weird stuff happenin,’ just ignore it. It’ll go away on it’s own.” As soon as he finished speaking, he hopped in his pick up and drove off. Right away I thought this was weird, but didn’t bother questioning him about it, figuring he was just messing with me. With my shift starting in 30 minutes, I downed a red bull to make sure I had enough energy to do the entire 12 hours.
Come 7 o’ clock, only four people were in the building. There was me, Don, who was in the security room working the cameras, Margaret, the on duty pharmacist, and a guy who’s name I forget, so we’ll call him Jerry, who was Margaret’s tech and assistant. I spent my time sitting in the lobby area of the pharmacy at the back of the building, where the desk where you get your prescription filled is. It gave me a good view of the entire store as the shelves in the aisles were very short, and I was content that I wouldn’t miss any “criminal activity.”
4 uneventful hours later, I was pacing around the inside of the building, feeling somewhere between restless and bored. I noticed that we’d had no customers come in yet, but I thought it was normal considering the location of the building and time of day. That’s when my walkie-talkie crackled, and I heard Don’s monotone voice from the other end. “Rick, something moving outside right by the back entrance. Looked like a teenager effing around. Check it out, over.” As soon as what he said registered, I immediately felt off. I’m not normally freaked out, but I couldn’t fathom why a person would be behind an old strip mall in the middle of nowhere, at 11:15 at night. Hoping that either Don imagined it or the camera glitched, I replied with a quick “on it” and headed to the back entrance of the store.
I opened the back door, feeling slightly nervous, and didn’t see anything. Not at first, anyway. A single strip of fluorescent lights from above the back door illuminated the parking lot, and I looked it over to make sure nothing was out of the ordinary. That’s when I saw it. Standing maybe 60 feet away, right at the edge of the woods, there was a man, or at least what looked like a man. It was barely illuminated by the light, so I could just make out it’s silhouette, but man, it was tall. It was at least a foot taller than me. My stomach dropped, and I felt really unsettled. I did, however, want to do my job, and get this impossibly tall dude off the premises. I called out to it with a simple “hey!” Immediately after I said that, the thing took off straight into the woods, dissappearing from my sight almost instantly. Trying to rationalize it, I told myself it was probably a bear or something like that, even though the way it moved and stood looked nothing like any animal I’ve ever seen. Being very unsettled, but wanting to get the shift over with, I headed back inside.
This is where things take a turn for the worse. About 45 minutes later, it was exactly midnight. I remember because I was on my smartphone when it happened. I was back in the lobby of the pharmacy, when suddenly I hear loud noises all around me. I look up, and I see easily the scariest thing I’ve seen in my life. All the windows, which lined nearly the entire store, exploded. At once. Like they were all being crashed through at the same time. There was glass flying everywhere. I felt like I was in a war zone. Thankfully, It only lasted a few seconds. I couldn’t see anything that could have caused the event through the now empty window panes. I pinged Don. He didn’t answer, and once I confirmed that Margaret and the tech were okay, I ran to his office. Once I got into the security room, what I saw chilled me. Don was lying on the ground, with broken glass everywhere. His face was covered in blood. Apparently, when the glass explosion happened, it also affected all the monitors in the security room, sending massive splinters of glass into Don’s face. The monitors all looked like someone threw a grenade at them. They were all totally wrecked.
I called an ambulance, and they immediately took Don to the hospital. When the county police showed up, I explained to them what had happened. They would’ve thought I was crazy if it wasn’t for the pharmacy team backing me up. They took statements, did a quick search around the area, and left, assuring us through forced smiles it was “nothing to worry about.” Obviously, me and the other pharmacy staff decided to call it a night. With all the windows busted, the building was entirely freezing, and definitely not presentable to customers. We all were unsettled by what happened. I called my grandfather, leaving him a quick message, all though I imagine it was somewhat incoherent as I had no way of properly explaining what happened.
I might’ve been able to forget about the incident entirely, if it weren’t for what happened next. After locking up, as I was leaving, getting into my car, I noticed there was a figure standing across the parking lot from me, right by the dilapidated burger joint. Since this area was lit with proper street lights, I could make out the figure far more clearly. I know it was the same one from before cause of the height. In the light I could make it out easier. It stood around 9 or 10 feet, towering over the entrance to the Burger King. It was bipedal and looked human, but it definitely wasn’t. It wore a massive, tattered trench coat, with large tears and gashes in the fabric. The best way I could describe the coat is Aiden Pearce style, (cheers if you get that reference). Through the tears, I could make out its skin. It was pale grey, like heavily watered down cement, and leathery. It looked almost wet, even though it wasn’t raining. It was walking slowly, deliberately, with oddly bent joints. It looked horrifying. I instinctively turned the key in my car, and as soon as the engine flipped over and the Charger roared to life, the thing turned to look straight at me. Dead center. I swear, I made contact with it’s black, beady eyes. Seconds later, it turned, and took off sprinting at lightning speed. The way it ran, it moved it’s legs like a bird, but it was impossibly powerful and fast. It dissappeared from my view within seconds, and as soon as it was gone I floored it home.
I drove straight home without stopping, all the while paranoid about the thing following me. I got into bed and had a very sleepless night, the entire time imagining footsteps and scratching outside my window. Never again did I return to that strip mall. To this day, I have no idea what the thing was. I haven’t found a single matching creature from science or urban legend that fits its description. I do know that that thing was not human. I think it’s a fair possibility that the creature was responsible for breaking the windows and monitors, though I have no idea how, and I don’t care to find out. If there’s anything to take from this, don’t be a security guard for an isolated place like my granddad’s pharmacy. There’s no telling what might happen, and what you might see when you’re on duty.