Jack Face Janitor by Jayden Rhodes

Everything was new, and nothing was going their way. They were stuck in a strange world outnumbered four to one. All the while the leaders did nothing to help or protect them from harm. This was the reality for the three friends that had just finished their previous tour. Even though they had familiar faces with them, they had to stick together so that they could survive and thrive. One friend spoke to the other, “Hey Zophia, how did you do on our first test in English class?” The skinny girl replied, “Probably better than you, doofus.” 

“You are probably right, ol’ Nick here ain’t the brightest box in the crayons as they say”, as he let out a chuckle at his own hilarity. The girl joined in on the laughter as they began walking down the hallway to their next class. 

In the next class another boy sat down next to the two friends. He began to mumble under his breath. It was apparent that he was stressed and not doing so well. Nick leaned over and asked in a concerned tone, “Leon, you doing ok bud?” The boy just looked up and shook his head, Nick noticed that he had a slight bruise on his shoulder. He then asked, “What happened here?” as he reached over to point it out. It was then that Zophia became concerned for her friend and their wellbeing, she walked over to Leon and sat next to him. She put her hand on his forearm and looked directly at him and asked, “Leon, what happened to you?” 

He looked back at the table and said, “I don’t want to talk about it.” She persisted and he eventually said that a group of seniors had held him up against the wall as they berated him and stole his packed lunch.

Two weeks later the three of them were sitting and talking about anything and everything under the sun. They had a substitute teacher today so they were not going to get anything done for that period. An upperclassmen, most likely a sophomore, walked over and asked if they wanted to hear a story about the school. Zophia and Nick said sure and Leon just looked down at the table to avoid any sort of interaction with the older kid. He began with his story, “Many years ago in this very school there was a quiet janitor who was a little odd. He always showed up early and always left late. Many kids stayed away from him because he had a nasty scar on his face, which unnerved many who saw it. Even the teachers didn’t really want to be near him. Sometimes when kids would get back from lunch, they would notice that something of theirs would be missing from their room. Usually it was food or drinks, but sometimes it was a deck of cards or a jacket. Many people suspected him of stealing from them, and eventually he was confronted by a couple of students who beat him up a little bit. After that, the missing things began to reappear, seemingly out of nowhere. As for the janitor, he became even more inclusive and just generally stayed away from people. Then one of those kids that beat up the janitor went missing. No one thought much of it because the boy was known to disappear from time to time, especially to some girls house. 

Things began taking a turn for the worse however when another boy went missing, and this was especially concerning since this one never not once did he miss a football game. So they began searching the school since he was never seen leaving, and they found the two boys. They were unconscious, hidden under some junk in the basement, behind a locked door. From then the whole town started blaming the janitor for what happened to those boys, and they were out in full force for blood. They chased the janitor out into the woods and he just kept going. He went miles into the deepest darkest corner of the woods where nobody could get him. Even though they never found his body, everyone was certain he would die out there. From the bears to the weather he didn’t stand much of a chance. 

Then everything just seemed to go back to normal, for a little while at least. Next thing they knew stuff started to go missing again. Since they hired a new janitor that everyone knew and trusted they were unsure what was happening. The next school year some of the new seniors were walking down the hall when they saw the jank face janitor, as they called him. They yelled and he just looked over then took off running into a room. The group gave chase and went into the room, but what they found was something of a shock. The room was empty, only one way in and one way out and he was definitely not in the room. Puzzled they all just went to their respective classes unsure of what to do or what to say. Eventually they started telling their stories which broke out over the town, about the ghost of the dead janitor that was still taking stuff from the students. So when you are walking these halls beware for you might see him and he will steal your soul. Also keep track of what you have on you because if you have three things go missing it means he is coming after you next.”

From that the friends began to be a little paranoid of their possessions and looked out vigilantly for a janitor with a scar on his face. However after about a week they seemed to forget their paranoia and the story in of itself. The only member of the group who was still afraid was Leon, who would constantly check his belongings for anything as small as a missing pencil just to confirm the existence of the jank face janitor. He was always looking for things out of the corner of his eye and would generally avoid being alone in a room when at school. After seeing his paranoia Zophia and Nick tried to comfort him. Leon started to roll back his actions and began to feel comfortable in the school again, even when he was alone in a room. He was doing well up until one day when all of his progress was set back by one little event.

Zophia and Nick were sitting in class talking about a new game that had come out when Leon walked in. He seemed distraught and somewhat in shock as he shuffled over to his seat and sat down. Nick saw this and quickly asked “Hey man, what happened? You ok?” 

Leon then said in a monotone voice and an expressionless face, ”my book went missing, and the next thing I knew it came flying out at me from a dark classroom. I caught the book as it hit me in the chest and I saw the face of the janitor appear out of the dark and stare at me. After that I just got up and ran to get away from him, I was going anywhere I could but I noticed he never followed me.”

The group decided that as they were going to lunch they would go into the empty classroom and look around to see what they could find. As they turned on the light and searched around all they could find were boxes upon boxes for storage. Then Zophia was walking along a wall when she felt a cool breeze along a bookshelf. She called everyone over and showed them the cool air coming from around the sides of the shelf. They decided to push it out of the way to see what was behind it. What they found was a dark staircase leading down into what seemed to be the basement. After some deliberation and convincing they all got out their phones and turned their lights on to head down into the abyss. With Nick leading the way down the dark stairwell. They began to go deeper and deeper into the darkness which soon enveloped them completely. It just seemed to be a bunch of supports and pipes going everywhere in a big empty damp basement. Then Nick stopped and the rest of the group looked to see what he had seen, there in front of them was the face of the Jank Face Janitor slicing through the darkness. But the face never moved, even as the group began walking forward again toward it. As the group got closer they could see other things starting to appear around the face. First a couch, then old food wrappers, empty bottles and cans. As they got closer they noticed things that have gone missing such as pencils and books, and even some hoodies and jackets. When they got right in front of the face they found out it was just a mask and hood propped up on a shelf, that their lights had made appear to glow in the dark basement.

Knowing that there was no ghost they had to figure out who had been scaring people, as well as stealing all of their belongings. So the three friends decided to wait in the dark and see who would come down into the basement. After about ten minutes they heard a door open on the other end of the basement with a light shining at a person’s feet. You could also hear about four or five sets of steps walking forward toward the little hang out spot. Just as they got close Zophia, Nick, and Leon put their phones on strobe, they saw that the people in front of them were the ones that beat up on Leon and the upperclassmen who told the story of the Jank Face Janitor. As the group was disoriented the friends made a break for the door so they could get out and tell an adult. Nick and Zophia stayed behind to hold the bookshelf closed and keep them trapped in the basement stairwell.

The adults came in and got the two to stop blocking the bookshelf, then they went down to get the kids who were trapped in the basement. They were taken out of the basement and were all put in a year’s worth of in school suspension for the thefts and the harm they have caused. Leon, Zophia, and Nick were congratulated on finding the source of all the disappearing items, and getting things returned to their rightful owners. And that’s how a group of three friends took on the myth of the Jank Face Janitor and the perpetrators behind the mask.

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