This was a short story I posted to r/nosleep on Reddit.
I’m on reddit a lot. I’m sure everyone here is, so you’ve all heard the term: a “risky click”. I know people use it like it’s a joke, but I’m really not laughing. Not tonight.
I was browsing reddit and got into a thread about snuff films. Don’t ask me how, I don’t really know. You know how this site is. You just jump from one thing to another, and tonight, I found myself in a fucking thread about snuff films. It was mainly just a bunch of back and forth about if snuff films were real or an urban legend.
About halfway down I found my first blue link, marked “Extremely NSFW”. I wasn’t at work, so of course I clicked on it. It opened up a new tab and immediately a grainy video started streaming of an empty room. It was pretty unremarkable, looked like a college dorm maybe. I could see a bunk and a school banner just outside of the frame. The page had nothing else on it, and the URL address was just a string of random numbers, letters, and symbols.
Before I could close it a young man sat down in front of the camera. He wasn’t looking at the camera, but at someone off to the side–I could see the second person’s shadow in the background. The man’s mouth started moving, but I couldn’t hear anything despite having the volume cranked all the way up; there probably wasn’t an audio feed at all. He’d say something, then stop and nod, then speak again. I should have shut that video off right then and there, but I don’t know–I was curious.
The conversation went on for maybe a minute, and I had no reason to suspect anything dangerous was happening . . . until I saw a black sack go over the guy’s head. The other person in the room finally stepped in front of the camera. A big woman in a purple kimono, her face hidden behind a mask. I recognized the get up immediately since I studied Japanese history. The mask was made of porcelain with small eye holes and a partly open-mouthed smile; the lips were painted a vibrant red, and long, black hair hung from it. It was a noh mask used in traditional Japanese theater, and this particular one was supposed to represent a young woman–the thing about these noh masks is that they are creepy as hell. Google it real quick, and I think you’ll understand.
Both the woman and the man turned their faces to the camera, looking directly at me while standing completely still. I watched the woman pull out a small knife hidden inside her kimono and raise it over the hooded man’s head. There wasn’t much time for thought. The knife came down in the side of the guy’s neck. I’ve never seen so much blood; it just spurted out rhythmically, getting all over the woman’s kimono, running down the man’s shirt, staining the room around them.
I almost fainted, I think. I looked down and focused on breathing to regain my composure. When I finally looked back at the screen the man was gone and only the woman remained. Her face was pressed up to the screen, close enough for me to see a pair of eyes looking out through the eye holes. I then noticed the red light on my laptop’s camera. On. It was fucking on–my camera was on. I closed the whole browser, but it just reopened. I didn’t have time to react and watched as a progress meter zipped across the bottom of my screen and save a file to my computer. I hurried to bring up the downloads folder, but my hands were shaking so bad, and whatever was happening on my computer was going faster than me.
A second window blew up on my screen and a map of the US came up. A red dot blinked over my state, and I knew right away it was showing my home address to somebody. Then it all disappeared. I tried to find the mystery file, but found nothing out of the ordinary sitting on my computer. I went back to the reddit thread and couldn’t find the link either. It was like the whole thing never happened.
Except I know it did. I’m not crazy, and I know what I saw. I’m not sure if it was real or not, but I do know someone out there has my address now. Christ, I hope this is all just an elaborate prank. All I know is I’m never clicking anything on Reddit again.