Black cats are bad luck. Don’t walk under ladders. Don’t open umbrellas indoors. Don’t break a mirror. Throw salt over your left shoulder when you spill. Common sense. Easy to learn. Easy to maintain. Keep you safe. But those are basic. Simple for a reason. They do the minimum required to keep things out of your home and out of your life. Minimum, though. Other things, smarter things, they can slip in unnoticed if you’re not careful. That’s why you have to be careful and do more.
Salt spread in the doorways. Ash mixed with blood smeared above doors and windows. Sleeping with your bed pushed up tight against the wall so that you can only be approached from one direction. Those are better. Those are smarter and can fool the majority of the creepy-crawlies that would enter your home and take from you that which you value most. The majority doesn’t mean all, though, and the real danger still lurks, waiting for you to make a mistake. You can’t make a mistake. You don’t want to do that.
You have to be smarter than that. You have to take extra precautions so that they don’t get you and they will get you if you don’t. Sharp wire mesh over the windows so anything trying to get in will either cut itself and bleed or has to cut through the mesh, which makes noise. Broken glass spread over the floor. Wait, that only stops those things that walk. What if it floats? Stupid! Damn it. Try again. Glass on the floor AND tied to strings dangling from the ceiling. Better. That covers both of those bases. It doesn’t account for incorporeal things, but we’ll get there. Fans blowing cold, wet air should help in that case. Rig up a system to blast holy water through the fans to get the air nice and damp. That should do it.
People may come to check up, but ignore them. The really smart ones, well, they can take the form of people you love. It could be your partner or your mom or your work friend, but you can’t trust that any of them aren’t either possessed or an actual disguise being worn by the smartest ones. Don’t let them in. Refuse them entry. They can’t get past the door if you don’t open it and if they push through it, the glass should stop them.
If they get in, somehow, you don’t have much recourse. Go for the stake and go for the heart. You should be able to catch them off-guard and you only need one chance. Make it count. Drive it in as deep as you can and ignore their screaming. It’s a lie. It’s all a lie. You have to keep yourself safe and sometimes that means killing.
Above all else, though, do not let anyone try to confuse you. They’ll say you’re sick and need help, but they just want to make you easy prey.
Don’t let them.
Here is where I''ll post random stories that aren't, as of yet, in a larger book. Call it a free ride into the mouth of madness, yo.