beautifully disturbing

Creepypasta #1095: The Room At The Bottom Of The Stairs

Length: Super long

This is the story of what happened to my family when I was 14. It was the strangest series of experiences I’ve ever had. 

My dad was an abuser. He never really touched me - he mostly ignored me, like I was beneath his notice - but he was terribly cruel to my mother. He never raised his voice or hit her when we were watching, but he would just quietly criticise her in an almost unbroken stream of soft, matter-of-fact verbal abuse. Also, while he may not have done it in front of us, I know he definitely hit her. My mother was - and still is today - a graceful woman. The stories about her tripping on the stairs or slipping on the wet bathroom floor never rang true, and yet we all saw the bruises, the arm in a sling, the band-aids over grazes.

She left him when I was 14 and we were all relieved. I felt no love for him and I had become more and more convinced over the last couple of years that one day he would kill her, and maybe us too. Seriously, he was a frightening man - seemingly soft-spoken, but cold and intense. When stories crop up on the news about fathers snapping and murdering their families, I always imagine my dad could easily have been one of them.

So we left, and I was glad. There were three of us: me, mum, and my big brother Joseph who was a 16 at the time, only a few months off 17. Technically, he was old enough that he could have left home already, but like me he lived in fear of what dad might do without a tall, muscular 17 year old in the house. Joey was a rugby player, a hundred kilos of solid muscle, but the opposite of our father: gentle, sweet, generous. I think it was his growing resentment of our father that pushed mum to leave. She told me years later that she had nightmares about Joey losing it and beating dad to a pulp, ending up in prison.

Mum did her homework as thoroughly as she could. She got the court order in place so dad would be barred from entering the property or coming anywhere near it, and the very next day she had the moving truck and the self-storage unit booked. A soon-to-be homeless unemployed single mother has limited resources, so we had to do all the moving ourselves. That was a long, exhausting day, but it was good, too. Liberating. We knew we were leaving that bastard behind.

Most of our stuff was stored away and we lived for a couple of months with mum’s sister Bella and her husband Steve. Their apartment was small for just the two of them, so with five of us there it was insanely cramped. Mum’s plan was simple enough - get a job, any job, and then find a place to rent - but the job market wasn’t great for a fortysomething single mum who hadn’t worked in almost 20 years.

Thankfully, the government came through with some emergency payments. Between that and Joey’s income from his weekend job, we had enough money coming in that we could maybe think about moving into somewhere very cheap. It wasn’t just the cramped apartment, either. Mum didn’t talk about it much, but she knew that dad knew her sister’s address. A few times the phone would ring in the middle of the night and the caller would hang up without saying anything, so mum was starting to get spooked.

Our stroke of luck came in a matched pair. Mum got a job interview for an office admin position, and it went very well (the interviewer was a sympathetic older woman and mum was very honest about why she was looking for work after such a long break). On the way home on the bus, she saw a “for lease” sign. My mum has always been very spiritual but she was feeling very optimistic and decided the sign was, well, “a sign”. She jumped off at the next bus stop and ran back to check it out.

It was an actual house, not a unit or apartment. Most people in my mother’s position would have walked on, assuming it was out of their price range, but my mother was very observant. The road it was on ran along a kind of ridge between two hilltops, and the house was on the uphill side of the road, nestled in against a fairly steep slope. As such, the back yard was considerably higher up than the street, and the back door was on the same level as the upper storey out the front.

My mother noticed that the exterior of the house - stucco over brick, painted a creamy white - was looking pretty shabby. It was all surface dirt, the kind that would come off easily with a hose and a broom. The fact that nobody had bothered made mum feel certain the house wasn’t getting a lot of love. She took a closer look at the “for lease” sign, swinging from a wooden post in the front yard. Sure enough it was looking very weathered too. She jotted down the phone number and - she confessed to me later - almost skipped back to the bus stop.

Her instincts were good: an unusually frank agent admitted that it had been sitting empty for months and the owners were eager to get a tenant in. The rent they were asking was shockingly low and well within our budget. Mum got the rental approval and a new job on the same day, and we all felt like our troubles were over.

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The Horror of Our Love
The Horror of Our Love

This song has a sweet melody and some beautifully disturbing lyrics…I felt it fitting to the relationship between Sebastian and Ciel. 

“I want you stuffed into my mouth

hold you down and tear you open

live inside you,

love, I’d never hurt you.”

“Ah, the horror of our love,

never so much blood pulled through my veins.

Ah, the horror of our love,

never so much…blood.”

windwardrose replied to your post “Um, so, if you would like to be persuaded into reading Elizabeth…”

Personally I would say start in one of two places: The Winter Prince (if you’re okay with dark, sketchy/disturbing, but beautifully done unique Arthurian legend) or Code Name Verity (if you want dark but hilariously funny sometimes and generally wonderful though sad WW2 fiction).

Code Name Verity is the one I’ve seen the most about, so I’m leaning towards reading that first.

I guess it depends on what sort of “dark, sketchy/disturbing” the book is? A lot of my favorite stories can be considered dark, but I can’t stand those stories that are Edgy, Gritty, and Disturbing  simply Because. And the creator thinks that makes their work cool and realistic. But I hadn’t heard about The Winter Prince before, and I do like me a good Arthurian Legend retelling; so I’ll have to look it up!

Thanks for the recommendations!

Ten Films I Love In No Particular Order - Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind

There are so many reasons as to why I love this film. It’s inspired me so much as a filmmaker and there’s so many aspects of this that I adore. I’m as passionately in love with this film as I am passionately jealous of Charlie Kaufman and Michel Gondry for being able to create it. Usually I can determine how much I like a film by how jealous I am of it’s creators. 

Of course I won’t spoil anything for those of you who haven’t seen it, so i’ll tread lightly. My basic synopsis is; a couple partake in a procedure to delete each other from their memories when things go south in their relationship, but it is only through literally re-experiencing these memories that the characters realise why they were together in the first place. Even from that brief description, you can tell it’s a complex film in some respects but in others, it really isn’t. It’s the most basic yet complex love story. We relate to both Joel and Clementine completely despite the absurdity of the extremes they’re taking to get over a break up. I always love seeing completely natural characters partake in relatively out of this world stuff, and this film is the pinnacle of this. Charlie Kaufman is one of my favourite writers in the industry and this film, in my opinion, is his best work. Here he’s weaved a complex plot with a lot of fun opportunities for interesting visuals and set-pieces, but it never loses sight of it’s characters. The characters drive this film and Kaufman knows that and embraces that. The complex aspects of the story that I mentioned before are nothing short of amazing. I’ve never seen a film where a physical attribute of a character is used to defy our expectations and really shape the intricacies of the plot. Won’t say anything more regarding that because the pay-off is so satisfying and so thought provoking. 

Jim Carrey plays the part of Joel with an amazing amount of nuance and subtlety. Joel is nothing like any other character Carrey has portrayed. He isn’t loud, he isn’t exceptionally funny, he’s the polar opposite. This character is such a vast step away from Carrey’s usual schtick. Joel is likeable, sympathetic, timid and feels so so real. He does the whole ‘socially awkward’ thing perfectly, which is no easy feat because in so many films that kind of character can come off as obnoxious and over the top. For such a quiet and resolved character to be able to carry a film so well is incredibly impressive and this, along with Truman Burbank is my favourite Jim Carrey performance. As for Kate Winslet as Clementine, she also delivers an incredible performance. I mean, come on…..she’s Kate Winslet. Clementine is a chaotic mess who really shouldn’t be with anyone like Joel, yet we love her. There’s a weird mix of naivety and worldliness to Clementine that is conveyed so well by Winslet and oddly works. Both of these characters are so different but work so well together and heck, you really hope everything’ll be okay in the end! Two incredible characters in an equally incredible film. All of the other actors do a great job too, Elijah Wood in particular. Patrick is a beautifully tragic and disturbed character. Very well played.

And finally, Michel Gondry. Michel Gondry is one of my favourite directors and one of the people who inspired me to become a filmmaker. This film is so expertly directed. The cinematography is down-played but different. Everything feels cold and natural, and suits the film perfectly. The film is shot in an incredibly organic fashion. A lot of hand-held shots and very little fancy camera movements. This natural approach to directing makes perfect sense in a film that is just so natural in almost every aspect. Later in the film when we are inside Joel’s mind, the visuals become increasingly more and more surreal. But again, it’s a sort of down-played surreal. Things begin disappearing as each memory is erased and scenes transition from one to the other seamlessly. We really feel as if we’re reliving these cherished moments with Joel and feel his pain the moment they’re taken away. The sink scene is one of the best uses of practical sets in modern cinema. 

So yeah, watch this beautiful film if you haven’t already. If you have, what do you think? Thanks for listening!

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- Witch tips (or really if you have a witchy blog)

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It’s 5 O’clock In the Morning

Title: it’s 5 O’clock In the Morning

Characters: Steve Rogers x Reader

Summary: An injured Steve comes home to you.

Based On: Who’d Have Known by Lilly Allen

Warnings: None (I wrote this at 3:AM so it’s probably shitty, oh well)

Tagging: @jostuns @shayara (ik Caps not your fav but this is really fucking fluffy)

Rain was softly falling onto the window balcony lulling you into a sense of safety. The soft buzz of the TV keeps you awake just enough so that you’ll hear the jingle-jangle of keys in the lock when he gets home.

It’s 5 o’clock in the morning when you hear the lock turn and the door open. A warm smile crosses your face when you hear Steve trying to quietly sneak into the room without waking you up. Your eyebrows crinkle together just slightly as he comes to lean forward on the back of the couch. He doesn’t smell of vintage aftershave, or mint shampoo. No, he smells like gauze, and antiseptic. He’s injured, you realize.

You hear him chuckle lightly as a hand comes down to hold your cheek, “I know you’re awake” he mumbles to you, voice quiet as if he doesn’t want to disturbed the beautifully domestic scene of you in your fluffiest PJ’s, curled up in a blanket, with Parks and Rec on in the background, and a class of red wine on the coffee table. Your response is to nuzzle your face into his hand, and send him a sleepy smile.

“And I know you’re hurt.” A pointed look in your eyes. Steve sighs, and hangs his head, hand never leaving your face as his thumb brushes your cheek repeatedly in a soothing motion. You pull the warm blanket from your form as your body yelps in protest from the sudden cold air, and stand. You walk around the couch, and put your arm around his shoulder, leading him to the stairs up to your bedroom. You sigh as you can see the outline of gauze around his stomach from under his shirt.

Once you get him into bed, you lay down on his other side, and start drawing patterns on his chest. He seems to be about to dose off to sleep when you ask your question.

“Who’d you save this time?” He raises his eyebrows a bit, but doesn’t question you about your reasoning for asking.

“Barton. Rolling away from a switch blade to the gut. It’s just a flesh wound though.” You sigh, and shake your heard, laying your head down on his shoulder continuing to trace outlines on his chest, trying to match it’s rise and fall.

“You save everyone, that’s your thing, I get it.” You look up at him through worried eyes to find he’s already staring back at you, “But who saves you?”

“You do.” He replies without even hesitating. You laugh a little, but it’s dry, no real humor in it.

“I’m being serious,” you tell him. “You’ve seen me fight, I’m shit. I work in IT for crying out loud!” He chuckles lovingly, a peaceful smile on his face, and a look in his blue eyes like he coming home for the first time in years tells you, that he is, in fact being serious.

“Maybe, but I don’t need another fighter. Maybe sometimes I just need a little peace.”


The opening video to ROR is long, like Matt said, but I want to make sure you all watch it. It really gives you an idea of the beautifully disturbing story you’re in for, and the song is just so haunting.

My Top 20 Films of 2013 (Part 1/2)

(Because 10 is just such a limiting number and 30 just seems excessive)

Here’s part one of my top 20 films of 2013. Starting from #20…

20. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller)

I’m a sucker for LIFE magazine covers—the cover photos are either stunning, heart-wrenching, iconic, or all of the above. Add in the sweeping sounds Of Monsters and Men, along with some inspirational text (which, according to the film, turns out to be LIFE’s motto), and you’ve got yourself a winning trailer. Yep, this film was one of the most anticipated films of the year for me, yet, here it sits at #20. 

Yes, it was an entertaining film—and beautifully-shot. However, it required me to suspend my disbelief so much throughout much of the film’s duration, that even in the moments of vulnerability and realism, I found myself feeling little beyond mere entertainment. And for a story centered around a company whose motto includes as life’s purpose “[to] find each other and feel”, I found myself not feeling much beyond being entertained.

But hey, I took my family to watch it on Christmas Day (my second time watching it, my family’s first), so it must’ve been entertaining enough, right?

19. The Grandmaster (Wong Kar Wai)

Admittedly, it’s been a while since I’ve seen this film (this applies to some other films on my list), but one scene that sticks out to me in this film is a fight sequence between Ip Man and Gong Er, soulmates from two different schools of martial arts in China. As they’re fighting mid-air, there’s a moment where their fingers graze each other. By the end of the movie, that scene nearly broke my heart. 

Not to generalize, but a lot of American films tend to make a moment (and then some) of two lovers and the emotional sparks that fly between them. In The Grandmaster, however, the romance between Ip Man and Gong Er is handled with such subtlety and suppression that it makes it matter all the more (and by the end, all the more heartbreaking). Mix that in with the sense that our battle with time is probably the greatest battle of them all—and one that even some of the strongest succumb to—and it makes for a hell of a beautifully heartbreaking film. 

Plus, Zhang Ziyi is a bad bitch in this film. #workbitch

18. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Francis Lawrence)

I’m a rabid fan of the books. To illustrate this point, Shanna Henderson introduced me to the books during The Glee Project and I read it tirelessly between our homework assignments, music video shoots, choreography and eliminations. Reading about a game where only one emerges victorious through a string of brutalities and murder DURING The Glee Project… I guess I’m a really intense person. Anyway, I digress. 

It’s rare that a movie franchise is anything more than entertaining, especially the sequels, but Catching Fire is one of the rare exceptions. Yes, it has the eye-roll-inducing moments (like when Peeta hands Katniss a pearl from an oyster he shucks moments before and smiles - refer to my issue with this in my Grandmaster post), but it’s also Katniss’ coming-of-age story where she begrudgingly accepts her role within the coming revolution as a symbol of hope for the people. It’s a satirical piece on society’s insane obsession with pop culture and its ridiculously distorted love affair with fame in all of its costs. It depicts the media’s ability to subvert the status quo in such a powerful way that people can rise in upheaval to something they had just cheered for moments before. In all of its imperfections, Catching Fire is ambitious, especially for a franchise whose target demographic is young teens. 

My favorite part of this film, however, has to be Jennifer Lawrence. Personally speaking, I think she’s overhyped to the point of frustration, but in Catching Fire, her spark burns bright. She carried the high stakes of this film throughout its entirety and brought me with her on her journey. And in the film’s last minute, as her eyes burned through the screen with everything from sadness to rage, I couldn’t help but eagerly await the vengeance that the Girl on Fire was about to lay on the Capitol (coming in November 2014). 

17. The Great Gatsby (Baz Luhrmann)

Besides the film being critically panned and some pretty blatant imperfections, I think this is a pretty faithful adaptation of the novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald—and yes, I’m aware that Beyonce and Andre 3000 were not alive in the 20’s, so, let’s just get that out of the way.

I watched The Great Gatsby in 3D and in all of its vulgarity and excess, I thought it was appropriate (hello—the roarin’ 20’s, anyone?). More than anything though, what I personally loved about the film was its portrayal of an impossible love that became possible, even if it was just for a fleeting moment, because of one man’s belief that he could be anything. You say you can’t repeat the past. He would beg to differ. He would not only repeat it, but change it, if the stakes were high enough.

We do this everyday. We tell ourselves it will get better; that we will make it one day; that we’ll prove the world wrong. We repeat what is a lie in the present until it becomes true in the future.

I could go on and on about what the aforementioned notion of delusion versus power or how the story of hopeless and unrequited love broke my heart. But for the sake of brevity, I’ll leave you with this: if “Young and Beautiful” by Lana Del Rey does not Best Original Song at the Oscars, I will be pissed.

16. Stoker (Chan-Wook Park)

Are people born evil or is the nature of evil birthed through a series of life-changing events that force us to leave our conscience at the door and pick up a weapon in its stead? And do I really find this eerily disturbing piano scene between uncle and niece sorta-kinda-hot? 

Those are just two of the many questions that ran through my head after the film. It’s beautifully shot by the acclaimed Korean director behind the original Old Boy and true to his style (I haven’t seen Old Boy, but I hear some… things about it), it’s dark and disturbing, but beautifully so. Some of the shots in Stoker are some of the most visually striking shots I’ve seen all year. 

But that’s all I’ll say about it. Not because I don’t have much to say about it, but because there is an underlying tension and sense of conflict throughout the entire film that can’t be described, but just has to be experienced. Plus, maybe then you won’t judge me for being mildly enticed by an incestuous scene that takes place at a piano (and no, no sex takes place in this scene).

Side note: Matthew Goode is so creepy in this film. His performance was definitely the standout performance for me.

15. The Place Beyond the Pines (Derek Cianfrance)

Another one of those films that I haven’t seen in a while, so bear with me. 

Even if the results beg to differ, I think that most of us mean well (most of us). However, as we’ve learned at one time or another in our lives, even some of our best laid plans—and the intentions that drive such plans—can lead to some pretty horrible outcomes that repeat themselves in an endless cycle that seems inevitable, no matter how hard you try to escape it. 

I remember being really impressed by the opening scene—a long tracking shot done in one take. It’s ambitious and it establishes the tone of the film: risky, ambitious, dangerous. And by the final scene, I remember feeling heartbroken because sometimes, even taking risks and being ambitious in making things right can sometimes not be enough. 

Side note: Ryan Gosling is the only person who can still look good with all of those tattoos and that ridiculous bleach-blonde hair. 

14. Mud (Jeff Nichols)

Part coming-of-age story, part love story, part thriller.

But the biggest thing I took from Mud (that is all-too-well portrayed through Matthew McConaughey in the GIF above) is, you gotta know what’s worth keepin’ and what’s worth lettin’ go. 

13. Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón)

What this film accomplished on a technical level is beyond remarkable. I watched Gravity in IMAX 3D not once, but twice, and I can say that I wasn’t just watching the film—I was experiencing it. In this case, it was a terrifying experience (for those of you who don’t know, I have a huge fear of anything “endless” - e.g. the open sea, OUTER SPACE, etc), so bravo to Alfonso Cuarón for helping me experience high levels of anxiety for over two hours. 

But upon watching Gravity for the second time, I lowered its position on my top 20 way lower than it was originally ranked. Why? Well, there are a few things: 1) the novelty sort of wears out after the first time, 2) I have an issue with Sandra Bullock’s near-great performance, and 3) the screenplay is not just simple, but weak at some points. I could go on, but I don’t want to take away from the film’s accomplishments, which are out of this world. Get it? Out of this world.

12. 12 Years A Slave (Steve McQueen)

12 Years A Slave was, by far, the most difficult film to watch in 2013, but it is a film that, I believe, everyone must watch. It holds nothing back in depicting the racial cruelties of America’s history and after the film, I couldn’t help but feel disgusted by the innocent blood that’s been spilled on this land. 

Being in this industry as an Asian American, I’ve realized more and more  that racism isn’t dead; it just disguises itself in sheep’s clothing. 12 Years A Slave strips away all of the cotton and wool to reveal the injustice that was, and still is. All debates regarding the authenticity of the memoir aside, it reveals an element of truth—and the truth is something that we sometimes have a hard time facing. Maybe that’s why it’s so hard to watch. 

Side note: Lupita Nyong'o is remarkable in this film.  

11. Dallas Buyers Club (Jean-Marc Vallée)

Ron Woodroof, a Texan whose womanizing and drug-abusing ways lead him to being diagnosed as HIV-positive, starts a “buyers club” after discovering alternative methods of treatment in Mexico. It’s a story about one man’s refusal to just go sit in a corner and die, but instead, fight the pharmaceutical industry who just drags their heels in the face of an epidemic. 

Just because I don’t want to be the millionth echo raving on and on about McConaughey and Leto’s performances, I’ll just say that both of them were absolutely amazing in the portrayal of their characters. 

One thing I particularly liked about this film was how Ron Woodroof didn’t just become a saint after being given a 30-day death sentence. Yes, this film is about how common struggles can unite even the most different people, but Ron’s intentions behind his buyers club weren’t completely selfless, especially in the beginning. He wanted to make money. He was a raving homophobe and that wasn’t about to change overnight just because his new business partner was a transgender woman. The internal discord was evident even as he was slowly “changing” and I loved that because change, even in the face of death, is sometimes never easy, especially when there is a lifetime of experiences that have made you who you are in the present.

And that, ladies and gents, concludes Part I of my “Top 20 Films of 2013” list. Part II is coming tomorrow, but for now, what do you think? Agree? Disagree? Any additional thoughts?

So I had already seen Crimson Peak (like 4 days ago) but needed time for my brain to stop giving me flashback images of Tom every flipping second and for my heart to stop bleeding everywhere over the GODDAMN floor!  


I don’t know if I was just mentally attached to all of Tom’s characters, but I felt all my emotions being ripped out one by one SLOWLY and by the time I came out of the cinema I was BLOODY EXHAUSTED I needed a sit down and a hug! 

Please go and see it, it’s a beautifully disturbing and breathtaking story :)