They call it Starlight. It’s a coarse, bluish powder interlaced with little iridescent sparkles, almost like glitter. This drug – if that’s even the right word for it, has been running amok in my town. It’s a hallucinogen, but it’s nothing like anyone has ever seen.

Several people have already died from it, with more still missing, and no one can seem to explain why.

There’s been rumors about it for a while. Kids at school say it’s something more intense than anything else available. One guy who claims his brother tried it called it, ‘soul-reaming’ and ‘more horrible than anything he could’ve ever imagined.’ This only grew our fascination with it.

Now you may be asking yourself; if the effects are so bad, then why would anyone take it? Well, the same reason people eat tide pods and try to swallow spoonfuls of cinnamon, I guess. Ego, curiosity and boredom are a deadly mix. If there’s a demonized substance out there, odds are someone is going to try it eventually. This time, that someone was me and my three friends.

We were in Aaron’s garage about a week ago, just doing what we do best. Ripping bongs, roasting each other and debating upon how to spend a Friday evening. Griffy was hitting the bong, when Daniel pulled something from his pocket and handed it to me.

“Fuck is this?” I asked taking the tiny Ziploc baggie. Inside was about a gram of blue powder. Looked almost like Pixie-stick dust mixed with tiny flakes of metal.

“Starlight.” Daniel replied. I didn’t believe him at first. I had thought the drug was nothing but an urban legend up until that point.

They wanted me to take it with them, but after a very bad experience involving Salvia and dubstep, I had sworn off hallucinogens for a while. I just wanted to smoke weed. Plus, the drug was already rumored to be incredibly dangerous. Heard a story at school that some homeless guy had hurled himself into traffic while he was on it.

“Dude that’s such bullshit.” Daniel clearly wasn’t buying it.

“Let me guess; whoever told you that said he has a friend who took too much acid and now thinks he’s a glass of orange juice too?” Daniel laughed mockingly, but I wasn’t swayed.

“Come on man that’s just government propaganda. They say the same shit about weed.”

“Yeah, and meth and heroin.” I fired back. The tension grew between us as Griffy stepped in.

“I heard it’s like coke mixed with shrooms. Makes you feel amazing and see crazy shit too.”

The four of us continued bickering and arguing back and forth for a while. Daniel continued attempting to play the pier-pressure angle, but I wasn’t about to give in. After all, it would be wise to have at least one sober person if shit went downhill. Besides, half the fun of hallucinogens is watching other people do them.

“Let’s just do a little bump… fuck it.” Daniel popped open the bag, and dug his car key into the blue powder. He withdrew a moment later, and held the key to his nostril. A quick sniffle and the powder shot up his nose. He cringed and put a hand to his face.

“Oh, fuck that shit burns…” His discomfort didn’t seem to sway Aaron, who had already begun reaching for the bag as Daniel held his nose. Aaron held the key but paused as Daniel continued groaning.

“You gonna be alright princess?” Aaron asked him.

“Yeah… yeah I’m good. I think it just went down the wrong tube.” Aaron and I exchanged a look and a laugh as we thought about the stupidity of his statement. Aaron snorted his bump a moment later, and passed on to Griffy. Aaron didn’t seem nearly as bothered by it as Daniel was. Griffy then took his and snorted it, handing the bag to me. I sealed it up and handed it back over to Daniel.

“Pussy.” He shot me a glare, but I just shrugged it off.

“It wasn’t even that bad for me.” Griffy said.

“That’s cuz you don’t have anything up there to damage.” Daniel fired back. Griffy flipped him the bird as I sparked up a cigarette. The smoke lingered in the air of the stagnant garage. Daniel suddenly grew silent and began looking around the room as if following something on the wall.

Before my cigarette had even burned out, Daniel suddenly burst out laughing. Griffy jumped in his chair as Daniel began laughing harder than I’ve ever heard him laugh before. It was a wheezing almost raspy laugh, like he had just witnessed the most hilarious thing he’d ever seen. Aaron, Griffy and I just looked at each other. Both their eyes almost seemed to gleam in the garage light.

“Dude…” Daniel spoke between wheezing breaths. He then stopped, and looked around with a goofy almost manic smile on his face. The three of them then simultaneously burst into a calamitous laughter for no apparent reason.

The three continued laughing profusely for a good two minutes. As things quieted, Daniel suggested going on an adventure outside to embrace the trip. Unfortunately, it was the middle of winter and was probably negative 5 degrees that night. So, we decided to go out back and light a fire.

Aaron’s parents own about 3 acres of land, and his backyard is basically just an open field. Surrounding it is a decent sized forest, and about a quarter mile away is a small reservoir.

I got a fire going in the pit since Daniel, Aaron and Griffy were already beginning to trip heavily. I sat by the fire, and the three of them eventually did as well. It was then that I noticed their eyes. They were wide as dinner plates, with their pupils so heavily dilated that I couldn’t even see the color of their irises. What I did see in them though, was little sparkles, almost like those in the powder.

I lit another smoke and just began to observe them. Griffy was glancing around and giggling at random shit. Daniel was just silently looking back and forth, a goofy smile plastered on his face. I looked to Aaron and saw him frozen in a deadlocked stare. His expression seemed fearful, and his eyes didn’t so much as blink.

It looked like Aaron was staring up at the roof of his house. I turned around to see what he was looking at, but I saw nothing. I asked him what he was looking at, sure he would give some ludicrous, nonsense answer, but he said nothing. He just kept staring.

“Whoa dude…” Daniel blurted out as he suddenly rose to his feet. He started quickly walking away from the fire, and Griffy rose to follow. Aaron didn’t move a single muscle, and it started to kind of worry me.

“Aaron… dude you alright?” I asked quietly, not wanting to alert the other two. Aaron just continued to stare as I got closer. I noticed as I sat in the seat beside him, he was crying. It was silent, but tears had begun to drizzle down his cheeks.

“Aaron… what’s wrong dude?” I turned to see Daniel and Griffy crouched down some fifty feet out in the yard. Aaron slowly turned to face me, eyes glistening with sparkles. He then spoke in a whisper.

“God doesn’t want us here.” I chuckled, but then I noticed there wasn’t any trace of hubris in his voice. His eyes were pinned wide-open, and face seemed to be drained entirely of color. I felt a cold chill slide down my spine.

If you knew Aaron like I do, you’d understand why that’s such a strange thing for him to say. He’s a staunch atheist, always has been, and he has reiterated that to me many times. He might’ve just been joking, but I’ve never seen him look so scared for anything.

Aaron refused to budge from his spot, and he refused to say anything else. He just kept slowly looking around, until his gaze locked back on that spot on the roof. Finally, I broke away to check on the other two.

Daniel and Griffy were knelt down in the yard, and appeared as if they were studying something intently. I got close behind them, and found the two of them giggling to each other.

I watched them both, and they appeared to follow something on the ground with their eyes. There was nothing there as far as I could tell, and yet their eyes seemed to follow and react to the same point at the same time.

It was like they were seeing the same thing. But something like that would be impossible right? Hallucinating the same thing? Multiple times I tried finding anything that held their attention, a bug or small animal moving around. But there was nothing.

Suddenly they both giggled and hopped back to their feet, their gaze seeming to follow something towards the treeline. Neither of them seemed to even acknowledge that I was there. Daniel then scurried away towards the forest.

Griffy smiled, but then paused as his gaze rose to the tree tops. His smile then crumbled, and his eyes grew wide.

“Daniel…” He spoke, but not loud enough for Daniel to hear. Daniel was looking back and forth around the treeline.

“Daniel look out!” Griffy suddenly shouted at the top of his lungs. Daniel began to turn back, but paused as something above him seemed to catch his attention. He looked up, then screamed and began to run.

He hadn’t got more than five feet when he was suddenly and inexplicably hoisted up off his feet and suspended almost five feet in the air. His legs flailed franticly and his body moved side to side. His head and left arm vanished, as if they suddenly didn’t exist.

He was being held by nothing, there was nothing fucking there.

Suddenly I heard a sickening crunch noise, and Daniel went limp. His body was then released, and plummeted back to the ground. It hit with a squelch, his head, left shoulder and arm missing. A conglomerate of blood and shredded viscera sprouted from his wounds.

Griffy screamed at the top of his lungs, almost crying as he took off running. I didn’t know how to process what I had just seen. I finally seemed to snap back to reality, to see Griffy far from the house on the opposite side of the yard. I called out to him and gave pursuit as he continued screaming. As I passed the house, I noticed Aaron was no longer sitting by the fire.

Griffy tore through the treeline and disappeared within the dense brush. Seconds later I went crashing in behind him, feeling a flurry of branches and twigs assault me. Griffy had gone silent, but I could still hear branches crunching further within. I kept running, but ended up trapping myself at an impenetrable tangle of trees and thistle bushes.

I finally pulled out my phone and found the trail, but by that point Griffy had gone silent. I continued down the trail, calling out to him and searching around. I called Griffy and Aaron’s phone several times, but neither of them answered.

Police sirens shrieked in the distance a couple minutes later. I stayed out there for at least twenty more minutes. I didn’t see or hear any sign of Griffy, and regrettably I decided to head back. On the way back, I found a single shoe on the trail. I called out to Griffy again, but again he didn’t reply.

The cops had already begun scouring the property when I returned. Officers searched throughout the woods, shining flash lights all around. They spotted me as I walked up, and commanded me down to the ground. I didn’t resist. Everything had all happened so fast.

They questioned me, but all I managed to convey was that my friends had disappeared. I was about to ask about Daniel, when they did it for me. I had hoped that somehow, I hallucinated or simply imagined what had happened to him, but that wasn’t the case.

“I don’t know…” They pressed me for more, but I just told them I hadn’t seen anything. Even if I would’ve tried explaining what I saw, they never would’ve believed me. Then they asked a question which really caught me off guard.

“Where did you last see him?” I stared back at them confused. Had they not seen his mutilated corpse in the backyard? Eventually, they revealed that they hadn’t actually found Daniel’s body. All they found was a spattering of blood and bits of torn clothing.

Cops continued to try and extract more info out of me for the next few days, but I didn’t say much. What was I supposed to say? They would’ve thrown me in a loony bin if I told them anymore. The only thing I did tell them was about Starlight. Their expressions didn’t even seem to register a response from them.

A day later, a local churchgoer stumbled upon a gruesome scene. There was a pile of blood, shredded clothing and viscera along with a single severed finger at the front of the auditorium. They’re still waiting on DNA results, but I’m pretty sure it was Griffy, as no one has seen him since that night. They found one other thing too. The matching shoe to the one I had found in the woods.

All of this happened about a week ago, and no one has seen Aaron since. I hope he’s okay, but honestly, I don’t expect that to be the case. I was sure the cops would lock me up for the rest of my life, and they still might, but for now I’ve been allowed to return home as they investigate the case. There’s an officer stationed 24/7 outside and they won’t let me leave, but at least I’m not in jail… yet.

A couple friends have sent me texts asking what happened to Aaron, Daniel and Griffy, but I don’t know what to tell them. They told me that they’ve been seeing unmarked black vans driving around town. A lot of guys in suits, and even claims of seeing a hazmat team.

It’s probably not a wise idea for me to post this here, but I haven’t seen anything in the news about any of this. I haven’t been able to find out anything about this Starlight either. No one seems to have heard of it before, let alone know where it comes from or what it even what the hell it is.

I wasn’t planning on going public with this, but something happened about an hour ago to make me reconsider. I feel like I no longer have a choice in the matter.

One of the cops who had previously interviewed me stopped by. He was almost frantic, and asked to speak to me privately. Once we were alone, he told me they had gotten calls from a local about some old dude screaming at the top of his lungs and running around in their backyard.

Once the cops arrived at the scene, they found the man in the backyard wailing in agony. Both of his legs had been severed from just above the knee, and he was beyond consolable. The cop said it looked almost like they had just been bitten off. The leg bones were mangled, and fleshy bits of skin dangled off the wounds.

The cop almost broke down then. He swallowed hard and told me he had watched as the man’s head suddenly vanished while they were speaking with him. He was then lifted into the air, his arms and bloody stumps still flailing about, before being eviscerated by something unseen.

“There was just… nothing there. He was torn to pieces by nothing, like by something invisible.” He almost shook as he explained it.

“He said something before he died though…” The cop swallowed hard and spoke softly.

“They’ve seen us, the gate is open.” Neither of us knew what that was supposed to mean.

I’ve never been much of the preachy type, especially considering my chosen lifestyle. But it may be wise to avoid any sort of drug use for a while. The man that died was a well-known coke head.

cocaine22-569fe6d03df78cafda9f001dCops aren’t sure yet, but they believe his latest batch had been cut with Starlight. They haven’t found the dealer yet, but it appears as though whoever is supplying the coke, is intentionally trying to spread the Starlight. God help us all if they are right.