I love existential horror and the Cthulhu mythos, you could say it's my favorite setting for... anything. Whenever I read stories or novels set in that reality, I can't help but feel that the world around me is becoming strange and unfamiliar to match what I'm taking in.
It's my favorite feeling. I love to inhabit that space where absolutely everything feels foreign and strange, sinister. Despite his obvious character flaws, the extreme racism and whatnot, you can kind of understand how Lovecraft saw the world when you get into that headspace and understand where the stories come from.
So, I'm reading a collection of current stories, Gaiman, Meiville, folks like that have stories in the anthology. I read on the train and listen to ambient music to really get in there.
When you are on the train regularly, you just start to sense people entering and leaving your space, and can somehow even get a feel for who or what the person is without ever directly looking at them, I dunno how it works, you catch little flashes of color, movement, bits of clothing, your mind pieces it together.
I'm sitting and reading, and behind me sits an old man, I do not look at him, I just know that it's an old man, I see a shock of blondish red hair as he sits down, I continue my reading. I can sense him there though, he feels closer to me than most people sit.
As I'm getting deeper into the story, the outside world begins to take on that foreign, subtly evil quality I was talking about before. Light seems strange and flickery, the movement of other humans seems cartoonish and theatrical. As we reach my stop, I stand up, the dark ambient soundtrack of Out There humming in my ears, I decide to take a peak at who has been behind me, invading my psychic space.
He is an old man, yes, terribly skinny, wearing what I would call "80s" headphones, with the foam ear covers, and he is leaning forward staring straight ahead, large, gold wire framed glasses, his head positioned and looking at about where my head had been for the train ride.
His face is blank, his jaw slack, his eyes looking at nothing, he wears a large tan trenchcoat, and seemingly nothing else, his chest visible in the parting at the collar, his pale bare legs ending in black socks up to his calves, and into sandals on the ground, the coat parted such that you can see most of the way up his thighs, and still see nothing that would indicate, pants, shorts, underclothes.
I stare at him as the train pulls to a stop, he continues staring ahead, at nothing, and I feel the world press in around me, the inherent mystery of existence becoming apparent, my skin feels tight, and I wonder what drove him mad, and who does he serve. There is a darkness out there that we rub against constantly, that we do everything in our power to pretend isn't there, but sometimes, someone touches it, and is consumed by it.
For a moment, I get it.