Short Story: Part I: The Portal

Spencer drove into the school parking lot and parked his truck. Leaning his head back against the headrest, he thought about how happy he was that morning when he woke up and saw the freshly fallen snow. The meteorologists had been promising that snow for the past week. The snow was finally here, but his highly anticipated ski trip had to be postponed ‘til tomorrow in favor of a Digital Circuits lab. His project was due at the end of the week, and since the lab was busy all last week, he hadn’t had a chance to work out the demonstration part yet. So, here he was, ready to work on his project. 

Spencer got out of the car, grabbed his backpack, and headed to the lab, determined to get the demonstration part done tonight so that he could go skiing tomorrow. Spencer was happy that he would have the whole lab to himself. After all, it was a Sunday night before a holiday. No one was thinking about schoolwork tonight. 

As he walked across the snowy campus, he smiled. He felt like he was in a fairytale. The snow was absolutely perfect. Not even a footprint. 

“One would think that no one lives on this campus,” Spencer thought. Spencer kicked the snow on the sidewalk, and it flew everywhere. He smiled again and continued kicking the snow as he walked to the lab. He felt exhilarated. 

Suddenly, two figures caught his eye. Something seemed off. Spencer froze on a little bridge between the trees from where he could watch as they crept up the dark road. They seemed to be heading towards the dining hall. He couldn’t put his finger on it, but something about those two figures did not feel right. He tried to shrug off the bad feeling as he rushed to the building and quickly scanned his card. With big relief, Spencer closed the door behind him. 

“That was really odd,” Spencer thought, heading down the hallway. “Why do I feel like something is wrong? They were just going to the dining hall for a late dinner, right?” 

The creepy feeling still hovered in the back of his mind as he opened the door to the classroom and walked towards a desk. 

“Buckle up! This is going to take a while,” he said to himself and started to work on the circuit. 

After what seemed like an eternity, Spencer was ready for a test run. He put his USB stick into the computer and opened the program he had written the day before. 

 “Time to see if this will actually work,” he said. He typed the “run” command into the program to start the whole charade. 

He turned the circuit on only to be ejected from his seat and slammed against the wall a few seconds later. He was not expecting that. Spencer got up from the floor. As he was checking his body for any broken bones, he looked towards his circuit, hoping that nothing had happened to it. He saw that the circuit was still intact; he was not expecting to see a gigantic black hole hovering in the air above it and a pair of eyes staring directly at him. His instincts took over, and he quickly turned the switch off. The hole and the eyes disappeared. 

Breathing heavily, Spencer quickly gathered his things and left the building. He rushed back to his truck. 

“What the heck just happened?” he asked as he drove into the dark and away from the strange hole in the air. 

To be continued…

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