Claire finally makes it to Ralford Observatory, but what she finds there will change her forever. Meanwhile, whilst the brothers race to escape A:7.
Explicit content// This is a horror audio drama, intended to scare you and make you uncomfortable - Discretion advised//Content Warnings at the end of show notes]
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SPOILERS BELOW - Do not read these credits until you have finished the show if you wish to avoid spoilers. //
Written, directed and produced by Shaun Pellington //
With voice acting from:
Kieran Walsh as Professor Ryan
Adele Cliffe as Jess
Shaun Pellington as Elliot
Lee Pellington as Roman
Carol Pellington as Sarah
Brianne Leeson as Claire
Harlan Guthrie as Jim//
Intro theme-"Phantasm", Outro theme - "Shadowlands 5 - Antechamber"
Kevin MacLeod [incompetech.com]
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0
Both pieces are reduced from their originals with fade out effects/Character voice-over/Radio static SFX. //
Sound FX: Soundsnap.com // Additional sound effects from https://www.zapsplat.com//
Morse Code SFX from: morsecode.world //
Cover Art: Original picture taken by Emily Fitzgerald @emily.fitz_photography with 'Wake Of Corrosion' title design by Matt Fair//
Full credits can be found at: https://wakeofcorrosion.carrd.co/ //
[Content Warnings: threat, despair]
Thank you for listening and remember...don't wander in the dark.
[Intro music - 5 sec]
Narrator: Wake Of Corrosion Season 2 - Episode 8: Convergence
[Muffled sounds can be heard as someone switches on a recording device and moves it into the correct position]
Prof Ryan: [spoken in a solemn voice] This is Professor Ryan of Bunker A:12. This is a public broadcast to any Survivors out there. Before I begin, please be aware that I advise listener discretion going forward, as some of the content of this broadcast can be unsettling or disturbing.
[SFX: Morse code]
Ryan: Welcome back listeners, I’m going to begin this broadcast quite promptly as Claire live with us via radio.
[SFX: Radio click]
Are you still there Claire?
Claire: Ready and waiting Ryan. You broadcasting this?
Ryan: Aye. Just to clarify here, for our listeners, you’re currently outside the main building to Ralford’s control room beneath the Campion Radio Telescope, is that correct?
Claire: Well unless this sign has been placed here as a cruel joke!
Ryan: [laughs nervously] Sorry, I...it’s just that I’ve been waiting an awful long time for this moment Claire. Have you tried the door yet? Is it locked?
Claire: It’s open, I’m gonna go inside
[SFX: Door opening, creaking, footsteps]
Ryan: Alright, there should be some pretty clear signage leading you to the main control room, this’ll be where they’ll keep the data that we’re interested in. Now the doors to that section may be locked but if they’re still the same as last time they shouldn’t be hard to get through, if you know what I mean.
Claire: [mock shocked] You want me to vandalise somewhere so sacred to you? Ryan, I’m shocked!
Ryan: [laughs] I wouldn’t suggest it if it wasn’t such a dire situation Claire, you know that.
Claire: Oh I know, I know. I’ll see what I can do.
[SFX: Footsteps, wind howling]
Claire: Okay, so it seems like there’s something still open around here, a door or a window maybe? The wind’s rushing through pretty harshly. So...main room, main room….Ah, there we go. This place looks like it was built in the 80s. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much decorative wood. It’s all in pretty good condition though Ryan. Other than being completely abandoned it almost feels normal here.
[SFX: Footsteps, doors etc]
Ryan: No signs of any deterioration? That’s good. I have to say I was quite concerned.
Claire: Although, it’s definitely giving me the chills a bit. It’s almost too quiet here.
Ryan: Don’t worry, you’ve done the hard part Claire. Now, the reward.
Claire: For you maybe...Sorry...I guess suppose whatever I find here could really change things. I’ll keep looking….Ah, control room entrance, alright, looks good. And...Yep. Locked like as you said.
Ryan: And the doors, still the old style locks?
Claire: I’m assuming so...just give me a second.
[SFX: Rooting around etc, some metallic noises then a click]
Ryan: Claire, is everything alright?
[SFX: Door creak]
Claire: There we go. Open. Staircase leading up yeah? That the right room?
Ryan: [shocked] Did you just...ah, nevermind. Yes, that’s the one. There should be a series of computers at the top with a row of screens in a U shape around the centre. Large glass windows overlooking the pavilion in front of the Campion telescope that rests above the control room.
[SFX: Footsteps, stairs]
[SFX: Metallic breathing fade in]
Claire: Oh God…Ryan, do you hear that?
Ryan: Jesus Christ, I do Claire. Can you see anything? Be careful, please.
Claire: I’m not at the top yet, just give me a moment
Claire: It sounds different than what we heard before. More...I don’t know. Oh...Oh God. I...I’m going to stop here and tell you what I can see. Just in case anything happens, alright? Against the back wall, around what appear to be a selection of electrical components and maybe perhaps servers? I’m not sure. But there’s this mass of gray, it looks kinda like...well what I imagine Roman saw at our house in our home, but it’s so much larger, it’s nearly the entire wall.
[SFX: Metallic breathing]
I’m going a little closer.
Ryan: Claire...Claire please, tell me you’re doing this of your own accord. Remember what happened to your husband!
Claire: I’m still me. Don’t worry. [SFX: Footsteps] This thing is enormous. The late evening light that’s pouring in through the tall windows on the opposite wall is doing nothing to illuminate this vast mass. The sound has stopped now...but it’s...it’s moving. [audible breathing] It’s like the thing is breathing.
Ryan: We should really get that data whilst we can Claire. I’d hate for anything to happen when we’re so close.
Claire: You’re right...okay. Which computer do I need to access?
Ryan: If they’re still set up the same, you’ll need to access the one in the centre. At the bottom of the U shape. Do you see it?
Claire: Yeah, I got it. Alright. You said this place used solar power specifically, right? So…[SFX: start up] There we go. Okay, let’s hope your old log in still works Ryan!
Ryan: It’s been about a year...we can only hope at this point.
Claire: [laughs] Well, we’re in luck. Alright, what am I looking for here?
Ryan: There should be a program called starlogger. It’s a bit cheesy I know, but it’s a generic note taking system for astronomers. Anything that happened before all of this should be on the master system.
Claire: Wow. I have no idea what any of this means. Okay...so we’ve got some constellation names here...I recognise some of them but not all...No idea what the listed magnitude means…[SFX: Scrolling mouse wheel] Hold up…
Ryan: It’d take me a good deal of time to explain what all of this means over the radio. There should be some notes written in plain English to go with each section. Look for the subheading ‘General Observations’
Claire: Yep, that’s where I was heading…Alright, got it. Ryan..some of this has been redacted.
Ryan: What? That can’t be right...All of this data is shared across the system. There’s nothing the Campion telescope observes that would need to be redacted.
Claire: It’s about the Andromeda constellation. It lists all of these star names and…
Ryan: Yes, there should be 9 named ones.
Claire: Does the Orb? Is that short for orbit? Orbit is that short for? Does that stay the same?
Ryan: The degrees, yes. Why do you ask?
Claire: This suggests that they changed, were changing…There’s so much missing but one word keeps cropping up. Confluence...
[SFX: Loud alien sound]
Claire: Holy shit….
Ryan: Claire, are you alright?
Sarah: [heavy echo sfx - Thinks she’s on the phone to Claire] Confluence! It’s happening quicker than [gargled sounds]. It’s impossible. [gargled sounds] imminently, on a set path[gargled sound] Hello? Hello? I can hear you, can[gargled sounds] Claire, I don’t know if you can hear me anymore but please don’t[gargled sounds] come for me.
Claire: Sarah? Sarah, where are you?
Sarah: [heavy echo sfx] Confluence! It’s happening quicker than [gargled sounds]. It’s impossible. [gargled sounds] imminently, on a set path[gargled sound] Hello? Hello? I can hear you, can[gargled sounds] Claire, I don’t know if you can hear me anymore but please don’t[gargled sounds] come for me.
Claire: Sarah, I’m right here! Tell me where you are.
Sarah: [heavy echo sfx] Confluence! It’s happening quicker than [gargled sounds].
Claire: [frustrated] STOP! [getting upset] Just stop saying that.
Sarah: Convergence. Convergence. Convergence.
Claire: [heavy sigh] Ryan...Can you hear her? Or am I finally losing it?
Ryan: I can Claire...I can. It sounds like she thinks she’s talking to you. But, it doesn’t sound like she knows you’re there.
Claire: The phone call! When Roman saw the video of me at home, I said that Sarah called me and mentioned that word...confluence.
Claire: God damn…[shouting] Sarah? Sarah, where are you?!
[SFX: Metallic breathing]
Claire: I’m sick of this…
Claire: Who’s here? Who’s in here with me?
Sarah: [pained] I’m here...Claire, I’m here...In the wall!
Claire: [scared] What happened to you...I, I can’t see you. How are you in here?
Sarah: I...I don’t know. I can’t see but I feel my body pressed against the wall...it feels so vast.
[SFX: Crumpling sound]
Sarah: [cry of pain]
Claire: Shit, was that me? I’m sorry if it was! You must be close by, somewhere inside all of this mess on the wall.
Sarah: Claire [SFX: Metallic breathing] I think I am that mess. It’s me Claire...Myself and this mess, we’ve converged. A confluence. [monotonous] A confluence of stars and light that seeps through all that you see and consumes everything in its path without knowing or feeling without seeing or blinking or making time for anything other than itself and the confluence of stars and light that seep-
Claire: Sarah! Stop!
Sarah: I am a mess.
Claire: What was that?
Sarah: I...I don’t know. It’s just in my mind. This repeating thought, the repeating signals. Sometimes I can only think it, sometimes I can only speak it. Occasionally I’m granted my own words.
Claire: What do you mean, granted?
Sarah: It’s here, with me. A confluence of stars and light but so dark, so incredibly dark.
Claire: Listen, I don’t know what the hell has happened to you, or what this confluence is. But I need to know what’s happened out here so I can stop it and save you. I think somewhere deep down, you know.
Sarah: [SFX: Metallic breathing] A mass of stars and space and dust. Spirals like great arms curling ever outward, fading never ending always reemerging. A trillion stars like dust in the sky, stirred up by a great convergence. They came together and nothing touched the stars and planets. But something touched us. And it won’t let go.
Claire: Sarah, you’re seriously freaking me out here. [a long pause] Sarah? ….Hello?
[SFX: Unsettling movement noise]
Sarah: [struggling] It won’t….let go.
[SFX: Creature sound]
Ryan: Claire? Are you-
Claire: [interrupting] Sorry.
Ryan: [frustrated] God damn it! [SFX: Desk slam etc] We’re so damn close as well! Why must everything be so arduous! [taking a breath and a moment to calm himself] Apologise Survivors, but I feel as though this uphill struggle is never ending. No matter how much I hypothesise, plan and listen to, I feel so trapped in this Bunker. So hopeless against this….thing! This nightmare…
I need a moment...I need to think about what Sarah said...or at least tried to. [sighs] I’ll play for you the next entry in Roman and Elliot’s journey whilst I give this some thought.
[SFX: Recording click]
[SFX: Muffled recording sounds]
Elliot: We can’t find Jim. Like, we can’t find him anywhere.
Roman: We tried all the rooms, even the one with that weird shrine in it…
Elliot: C’mon, be a bit more sensitive. It’s where people went to think of the ones they’d lost.
Roman: Sensitive? You’re the one who took whatever was in that box from there.
Elliot: People have to know what their friends wanted to tell them. Everyone here has gone, Roman. It’s the least I can do.
Roman: Still sounds a bit invasive if you ask me….Anyway, I don’t care about that. I care about the fact that something could’ve happened to Jim.
Elliot: Y’know he could’ve left? Might explain why we can’t find any of his things.
Roman: Well he bloody packed that quickly didn’t he. And all without saying bye? Didn’t have him down as the abandoning type.
Elliot: Well why don’t we head down that way, toward the door. We’ve got all our stuff together, who knows we might see him or even just something that tells us he’s actually left.
Elliot: And we’ll keep this thing off for a bit longer, no need for it to be on for everything.
[SFX: Walking, muffled sounds]
[SFX: Elliot solo recording, writing]
Elliot: Before we made way to leave A:7 we had one last look around and happened to catch another one of those broadcasts from that Professor Ryan guy, he didn’t stay on for long but he did say that there were other survivors there with him, in Bunker A:12. After hearing that, it didn’t take much to convince Roman that that would be the next best stop. After all, it is the closest Bunker to A:7….yeah I know right, trust them to mess that naming up.
So we resolved to leave for good...head out of the auxiliary section of the bunker and perhaps find Jim along the way. We made it to the blast door that leads to the main bunker before things started to get weird...well more than weird actually.
It began with the door itself. It was as though it hadn’t moved for a hundred years, the amount of pulling force it took from both of us to get that thing moving was immense. My hand is still saw, I think I’ve torn of the healing skin on my hand. Haven’t looked yet though and I kinda don’t want to. As the door creaked open on it’s corroding hinges, we were greeted by a musty waft of air and a tunnel of darkness. Gearing up with our head torches we soon realised how the air was contaminated with drifting spores, much like the ones we’d seen in the tunnel a few days ago. Once again I found myself utterly defeated. By the time we’d noticed they’d already been floating around us for long enough for the damage to already be done and we weren’t exactly going to close the door and lock ourselves up in here for the foreseeable future were we?
Although, it very much seemed like Roman planned on doing just that. He swore angrily and immediately began shouldering the heavy blast door closed again. I tried to speak to him, to stop him but he couldn’t hear me over the almighty creaking sound that reverberated around the metal frame and empty corridors. Even when it had stopped he simply exclaimed ‘Be right back! Wait here’ and ran off before I could get a word in.
After waiting for a good 5 or 10 minutes, twiddling my thumbs and hoping that something awful had happened in the short time he’d been gone, I finally heard his footsteps racing down the metal staircase back toward me. In the yellowy light of the auxiliary bunker I couldn’t quite make out what was in his hand, at first it looked like two deflated fly-away footballs...I almost laughed, especially when he threw one to me.
They were gas masks. He seemed so proud of himself and immediately began adjusting the straps to fit. ‘Get it on’ he said ‘I’m not breathing in that stuff any more than I have to’. Said he found them on the first night when he’d had way too much to drink, only remembered cause they scared him half to death thinking they were faces. Of course...Of course the bunker has gas masks. Obviously! I’m not going to hide the fact that I was a bit miffed at myself for not remembering that. Luckily Roman didn’t pull me up on it.
Before long we’d were pacing through the main bunker corridor and of course, before long, we found ourselves lost in a maze of warped tunnels. In many places, some far worse than others, that wasp-nest like growth had started to set in. Had it followed us from the tunnel? Did we bring it here? I still don’t know. But whatever had happened, this had grown at an alarming rate. I started to wonder whether it had even grown, or if instead these were all the outer shells of some other-wordly creature that had settled in like a hibernating mammal.
It felt as though nothing we passed through the day before was the same...I know it was only the husk making it feel this way, but there were times I’d truly believed the tunnel had been rearranged around us.
All the while we explored and argued about the way out, we were haunted by echoing cries that I can’t begin to describe. Their presence like that of a mocking spirit, watching us squirm. Hard to tell if it were some sort of ventilation being on an automated schedule. The sound warped by the tunnels and our masks. Hard to tell if it were the cries of Jim or some other unfortunate soul, far away and trapped by whatever has been stalking us for the past half an hour.
I would’ve dismissed it as my imagination had Roman not seen it to. The corner of your eyes are the most dangerous corners of all, I’ve found. They make things up, create phantoms out of inanimate objects. Do you ever get that feeling when you’re walking down the stairs and you feel so strongly as though something is stood at the top watching you? ...Sorry, I’m getting distracted. Gas masks. They’re not helpful when seeing things in corner of your eyes. And with the added pressure of the mask itself paired with the limited visibility, they make everything more claustrophobic - more sinister. Every time I go to look behind me, there’s a millisecond or so leeway as I have to overextend past the blindspot of the mask to see what I would normally be able to. Everytime there’s just an outline, every time it’s nothing more than a shadow. But in reality...in reality it must be so much more. The silhouette of the thing is enormous, wall to wall enormous. Every glance it was impossible to tell where the entity stopped and the all consuming dark of the tunnels began. It makes me uncomfortable to think how something so hulking could move so silently, so swiftly.
It follows us like a cat, like an apex predator. Any time we stop and look it’s gone...but only just. Any time we move and progress, it silently stalks us, always on the edge of sight. The power of its gaze so strongly fixated on us its palpable, boring into the back of my head. I can almost imagine it, just eyes and shadow. I’m terrified that if I turn around the creature will be upon me, it’s shadowy form milimetres from my own.
At one point Roman got so maddened by the creature stalking us he shouted insults to the thing, as though to anger it, to goad it. I knew his attempts would do nothing but they sickened me nonetheless. The thought of shouting insults in English...in any language to an unknown entity that stalked us through the narrow tunnels of this Bunker, a creature which clearly hunts with such a level of intelligence and planning. It was akin to screaming in the face of a tiger hoping to scare the beast. I fear it did nothing but convince the thing more that it should devour us or worse.
I’m not sure how long we spent trying to find our way through the tunnels of this bunker before finding ourselves here. I’m starting to wonder whether we were being tricked or misled somehow. I couldn’t see how we could be completely lost for so long. Despite the singing husks on the walls, despite the dark, we still should’ve found the exit by now.
What we found instead though, was here. The generator room. My head was pounding at this point and my eyes ached. The tight and uncomfortable fit of the gas mask was beginning to wear on me. Combined with the poor lighting, it was a nauseating experience. That’s without the constant fear added in the background. Finding the gen room was like a moment of salvation, a moment of relief. We decided that heading inside was probably a bad idea, there is only one way in and out of there and if that thing wanted us trapped, it’s an awful place to be. What we did know however, was that if we could get the generator working again then lighting up this place may give us a better chance of getting out of here and perhaps even stop that thing from stalking us. After little deliberation, Roman headed in to see what he could do whilst I kept watch behind us from the doorway. There was no way I’d be letting that think I had my guard down. The next few seconds passed slowly as I felt my pulse through my tightening throat and I nearly cried out in shock when I heard Roman curse loudly from inside the room. The generator was dead, broken. Although not rusted for once at least. Then, as Roman finished his string of curses, a familiar and welcoming voice cried out, distressed. It was Jim. My head snapped to look in the direction of him shouting, the light from my head torch following my gaze. There was nothing then. Then, for a brief moment a flash of darkness within the light of my torch. A figure. A silhouette. A shadow...Jim? Before I could call out to him an almighty force struck my left side and sent my body flying through the air like a swatted fly through the doorway until I came crashing onto the painfully solid concrete floor of the Generator room. The next few seconds were a blur as I heard a door slam and several loud bangs followed by an eerie silence...Only the panicked breathing from Roman could be heard over my own groans of pain.
This is where we find ourselves now. Powerless in a room meant for power. How ironic.
I still don’t know whether that was Jim or not...I haven’t heard his voice since. I don’t even know if that thing is still outside the door or looking for another way in. Part of me refuses to believe the creature wasn’t able to open the door. Roman simply slammed it shut and wedged a cabinet between the handle and the floor. I’m already covered in bruises down both sides from the force of which the thing hit me...There’s no way it couldn’t force its way through if it wanted to.
But that just makes me more afraid...Why hasn’t it? Is it toying with us? Are we a game to this thing?
I don’t want to be the prey is something’s game.
I don’t want to be prey.
I don’t want to be.
[SFX: Roman’s voice recorder]
Jim: [comes part way through. Echoey/Distorted] Hello? Who’s down there, who is that?
Roman: There, the same again!
Elliot: Jim?! Jim?!
Roman: The fuck are you doing? That thing could still be there you idiot!
Elliot: It’s not like it doesn’t know we’re in here though does it?
Jim: Just being curious, I’m sorry
Elliot: We’re here. Can you see a creature out there?
Jim: You damn fool, it went poof. Just like that. Right before my damn eyes.
Roman: Why does he sound so weird?
Elliot: Maybe it’s the corridor? Maybe it’s something else out there...Who knows.
Roman: I don’t like it.
Elliot: Yeah me either, but what else have we got to go off? We can’t stay here forever can we?
Roman: Obviously. [To Jim] Is it safe to come out?
Elliot: Roman. The vent. There’s something at the vent.
Roman: Oh Jesus. Grab your stuff.
Elliot: What is that?
Roman: Does it freaking matter? Grab your stuff!
[SFX: Bags. Footsteps. Door open, slam. Rapid footsteps]
Jim: [distorted, cracked]
Elliot: Oh fuck-[sudden cut off] [SFX: Crackle. Static]
Ryan: [tired, still frustrated] I need more time. I need more time. I just need more. Survivors, please. Help me through this. Our collective knowledge is incredibly vital. Whatever Claire is experiencing at Ralford. Whatever the brother’s went through. It’s all linked, it’s all one event. I’m certain. We’re so close.
I’m leaving it here, for now.
Keep yourselves and those around you safe and warm and I implore you...Don’t wander in the dark.