Welcome to day thirty of the Haunted Hotel Writer and Illustrator showcase!
Come back each day, the entire month of October for a scare! Today’s story comes from room #30!
Looking back, I guess right away I knew something was not right. I was going towards the hotel, a car was coming right at me. I swerved then I arrived at the hotel.
Since I couldn’t recall the rest of the drive the fear gripped me by the throat, choking the very breath from my lungs. I pushed the fear aside as I tried to concentrate on the hotel. I stalked up the steps, noticing the clouds were increasing and hearing thunder starting to rumble off in the distance. I pulled the door to the hotel open and stepped inside.
“Heather,” a voice came from nowhere and everywhere. It made me pause for just a moment.
As soon as my foot hit the interior a crack of thunder sounded directly overhead. At the same time a bolt of lightning arced towards the ground, close enough the sheer power of it almost knocked me to the floor. The wind increased and the leaves which were lying quietly on the ground began to flow and swirl around me.
I walked up to the almost empty reservation desk.
“Name,” a harried looking woman behind the desk barked out at me.
“Heather Douglas. Room 30,” I barked back.
I took the key and walked away, the thunder outside loud even with the doors shut. I thought about going back outside in the wild storm for some reason the wildness of it all seemed to thrill and scare me at the same time.
I walked down the hall to my room still wondering why the hotel seemed to bring out the worst in me, all the anger and hatred ready to burst.
I got into my room and instead of unpacking or checking it out I walked over to the window to stare at the storm. The storm seemed to be a wild animal, the rain lashing at the windows, the wind howling like a wolf calling for his mate. The thunder sounded like wild horses running towards sights unseen. The lightning streaking towards the earth and I figured it wouldn’t take very long for it to find it find someplace to strike.
As the thought crossed my mind the power in my room went out, I know this because the heater in the room grew quiet, I knew where my sweatshirt sat as I had tossed it onto the dresser near the window so if I got cold it didn’t matter.
“Heather,” the voice sounded more urgent as the person felt a desperate need to get me to hear them.
I stood watching the storm hearing the whispers in the room. I thought about saying something but instead decided to listen.
I couldn’t quite make it out, no matter how hard I tried. At times it didn’t even seem to me the voices were speaking English. This went on for several minutes, I was carefully trying to find my phone to try to record the voices. I couldn’t make out a single thing no matter how hard I tried.
I began to shake but it not from fear but anger. I could feel my hands clenching into fists and I knew I had to get out of the room, I felt I could be capable of anything at that point.
I stormed out of the room and locked the door turned and ran right into a young looking girl standing right behind me.
“Oh hell, I am sorry,” I said as she looked at me in utter terror.
“Pardon me, miss.” She was looking around the hall when she spoke. She seemed to be looking for someone but only the two of us were the hall so I had no clue who she thought she would find.
“Are you okay?”
“Oh miss, have you seen Sarah?” she looked around again.
“Who is Sarah, child?” The way she spoke didn’t seem right to me. She seemed as if she had come from a different time or place.
“She is my chaperone, miss. If she is not around Papa will be ever so cross.” She shuddered and I wondered if Papa had shown her his temper.
“Chaperone?” I knew what the word meant.
“Miss, you know how all proper young ladies need to have one with them at all times”
“Can I help you to find her?” I asked.
“No miss, I am sure you have something else to do. I will find her.”
I smiled and kept going.
As I got halfway down the hall a thought occurred to me and I turned to speak to speak to her and she vanished. I knew she didn’t go into any of the rooms since the doors made a distinct sound when the opened or closed so where she went I had no idea.
I looked at the floor because a part of me was too scared to see what might be going on in front of me. Things had been bizarre since I first walked in the doors. I should have run then but I got tired of running away and the pain starting in my head felt as if I hit my head on something. I shook it off and looked down.
The carpet a red and black type pattern which seemed to be changing as I stared at it. The image seemed to resemble a river, the red in the pattern seemed to flow as if moving water. It was fascinating and scary at the same time.
“Now, there is a river of what looks and smells like blood in the middle of the hall.”
I nodded as if this happened on a normal day. “If you are trying to scare me then I suggest you try a little harder.”
“Heather,” again the same voice called to me.
I found a small library on the bottom floor and decided to get a book off the shelf figuring I could read for a while then try to get some more sleep.
I wonder if they have my favorite writer here, I thought to myself and then spied the book The Burning by Valerie Willis. I had read of few of her other stories and thought they were amazing so I felt thrilled to be able to read this one. She’s such an amazing writer. I settled down on the small couch and started to read.
I decided to head back to my room, the silence in there deafening and I really felt as if someone watched me and a sense of paranoia was not something I really enjoyed. I also had to take something for this headache, it would just not go away for some weird reason.
I read for a while and felt tired so I climbed into bed wondering if sleep would claim me. I am not sure how I ended up in the hall since I didn’t remember getting out of bed.
The so-called river of blood had gone but a trail of something going from room to room took its place. Also a few feet from where I stood a figure walked, as they got near a room they would try to enter and if the door was locked, they would move on. If a door just happened to be open they would go in, I’d hear screams and they would move on.
I saw the trail getting bigger each time they would enter a room, the hall no longer smelled fresh, it smelled like raw meat.
Even though I was not close to the person I could hear them muttering as if the words alone kept them going. At first I could only make out “rip them to shreds, make them hurt.” It seemed creepy, no other word for it.
“Heather,” the voice practically screamed my name. For a brief moment I thought I could see someone standing near me but I blinked and they were gone.
I thought about getting closer to the person in the hall maybe figure out more what they were saying. What a mistake I should have gone back to my room and moved the dresser to block the door.
“Reach into their chests pull their hearts out and squeeze until they stop beating. Rip out their intestines and feed the hell hounds. Use my nails and pluck out their eyes like a pimento from an olive. Toss the carcasses to the vultures.” With each word the figure dropped something on the carpet. At first I couldn’t decide what my eyes were seeing then when I realized it, I wanted to vomit. The figure was leaving small pieces of flesh which looked as if they had been bitten off. It seemed like a trail of breadcrumbs only made out of flesh.
Hearing those words made me stop and wonder. “Who or what could have made an ordinary person go to such extremes?” I knew when they reached the end of the hall they would have to turn around and I would be in trouble but something in me wouldn’t let me hide.
The muttering started again. “Too long, this is taking too long. I must burn them all, cleanse this place in fire. I need to hear them scream as the fire burns their flesh from their bones. To hear them scream will bring me joy for the first time in a long time.” The voice was full of glee as if the thought of causing more pain gave them a high like a drug would.
The figure stopped as if they sensed someone standing behind them. They turned around at first they were looking down. Their face hidden by their hair but I could tell the person seemed like a female which shocked me since most of the time men freaked out and went on killing sprees.
“Nobody will stop me” the woman said as she moved her hair from her face. “Nobody will stop me, not even YOU.” I saw right away who stood before me and I screamed as I looked into my own eyes.
Then I ended up back in my room, shaking from fear as I sat up in bed. I tried to tell myself that I just had a really bad dream but it felt so real. I knew what I had to do, I had to write all that had gone on and what I’ve seen since. If anything happened to me at least people would know I got driven to the point where murder seemed to be the only option.
I had seen shadows, heard whispering in my room which I could not figure out for the life of me. My head would not stop hurting and I swear I keep hearing a drip someplace and have no idea where it is. Some young girl dressed in period clothing looking for her chaperone and then a river of blood in the hall.
Then seeing myself in the hall talking about burning people and ripping out their insides, my sanity seemed to be in question and I’m not sure how much more I could take.
“Heather” the voice still insistent but seemed fainter than before.
I could feel myself getting tired, it felt as if I something pinned me down causing me pain. It almost seemed, for a brief moment, as if I somehow I hung upside down then the world righted itself.
This place is really messing with my head and it has to stop soon, I thought to myself then decided it was time to really take matters into my own hands.
“Do you really think this is going to work? The mind games, trying to drive me over the edge? I am not your puppet so why don’t you admit you are scared. You cannot come right out and tell me what you want because you know I won’t do your bidding so you figure you will wear me down and then when I am no longer strong enough you will take over.”
I heard some whispering and knew whatever thought it could control me was paying attention to what I said. I am not sure how I knew but I did.
“I am not sure how you think you will take over but I have to assure you it will not happen. You may think you have won but let me remind you, I have been through so much in the last year your little mind games mean nothing to me.”
I had the urge to get out of the hotel for a few hours so I headed towards the front door. At the door a man standing there and he put his hand on my arm.
“Running away are we?” I looked at him and his face didn’t look right. It looked as if he was put together by someone who had never seen a human being before.
“No, now kindly remove your hand.” I knew my tone sounded haughty but after all, who would be nice to someone so rude.
“Maybe you should.” He released my arm and I left the hotel.
I decided to check out the small strip mall close to the hotel. The sky looked so very dark as if waiting to unleash the fury hidden behind the storm clouds.
I found a small thrift store. It had Halloween costumes in the window and I opened the door and was met by a loud sound which reminded me of a car horn. I cautiously walked into the store not knowing what I would find. An older woman standing in front of a small box which had to be emitting the sound. She kept hitting it with a small hammer I guess she picked up off the counter.
“My grandson set this up it is supposed to play scary music when someone comes in but all it wants to do is make an awful noise.” She got so mad.
“Why not turn it down?” I found the volume button and turned the volume down. It got nice and quiet again.
“Now since you helped me what can I do to help you?” she smiled.
“Well, I came in for a costume but decided I’d rather get something warm it seems rather cold today.” I walked toward a sign which read “sweaters.”
“You look rather chilly my dear, let me get you some tea. Be back in a moment” she patted my arm in a blink gone.
I saw a couple sweaters, they looked warm and comfortable but then I saw one I knew I had to have. It was plain but looked warm when I picked it up and tried it on I knew it had to be mine. She came back in with the tea and invited me to join her for a while.
By the time I got back to the hotel the weather had gone insane. The wind almost blew me off the steps, the rain felt like small knives slashing at my skin. The thunder sounded like boulders being pushed off a cliff.
“Wild weather we are having,” an older woman said as I burst in the door.
“Very,” I smiled at her and went to my room. Since the vision or whatever occurred on Halloween I planned on spending the next 2 days in my room. I tried to figure out where the attacks started so I could avoid the areas. I decided staying in my room sounded like my best bet, since I had no idea what could have set me off enough to want to kill a bunch of strangers and in such a gruesome way.
“Heather,” again the same voice called to me.
I had this urge to find the person who kept calling to me, they sounded so upset. I had no idea how to get to them to make them feel better.
The next couple days passed rather quiet. Sure when the room got silent I could hear the voices whispering, I saw shadows under the door which should not have been there. My head kept pounding no matter how much medication I took for it the pain would not stop.
“I need to get this head checked out soon,” I said at one point, then felt faint. I guess I passed out because when I opened my eyes again several hours had passed.
The pain was less but the storm still raging. I decided to try to get something to eat since I couldn’t remember the last time I ate.
Going down in the elevator, I heard the same voice calling my name. I wanted to go to them but again I had no idea where they were or why they were calling my name.
I decided to get out my notebook and write more about what kept going on but of course I left it back in my room so I went back up.
As I came back out of my room, I saw something on the floor. It looked like mud leading from the elevator to my door. I didn’t see it anyplace else, just there.
“Curious,” I said out loud. My stomach hurt a little bit but I told myself the pain could just be hunger. I decided to call room service since going downstairs no longer appealed to me.
There was a knock at the door then someone screamed. Part of me didn’t want to open the door since I knew what would be on the other side.
As usual I opened the door, I never did learn to leave well enough alone. I didn’t see a bloody killer on the other side of the door holding the waiters head while the body flopped on the floor like a dead fish in fact I saw nobody which to me seemed even more scary.
I stepped out into the hall and the door slammed behind me and I heard the lock. All around me the doors were shutting and I could hear the locks engaging.
“So I am alone,” I said out loud then heard the elevator doors open and knew what just what could be happening.
A figure emerged from the elevator, hunched over and dragging something as it got closer to me. I could hear the storm still raging, to me it seemed as if it would never stop.
The mud back on the floor this time I could see tiny streaks of blood. It really did look as if something got dragged through the muck.
The figure from before came towards me, this time they were not muttering just walking toward me but I was terrified just the same.
As they got closer the dripping got louder, the pain in my head increased and it blinded me. I told myself to fight it since I really didn’t know what really was going to happen to me if they got close enough.
“Heather,” the voice called out to me again. I could feel my arm trying to reach out to them but it seemed to be pinned at my side.
“This makes no sense. How can my arms be pinned when I am standing in a hallway?” Again and again I tried to move my arms but they wouldn’t move.
The figure getting closer and I found I could not move at all. The light in the hall too bright and I could hear something moving around me but I couldn’t see anything. I am not sure if the blindness could be from the pain or the fact of the bright light. I could feel something on my face as if something kept dripping on me.
“Heather,” the voice said again, this time almost demanding I answer.
“What?” My voice sounded weak and feeble.
“She responded. Keep cutting,” another voice said.
“Cutting.” Why did the one word reverberated through my head. I had no idea what or why they were cutting something. I expected the figure to whip out a huge knife and start cutting me.
I could hear something roaring to life and thought to myself, Great now a damn dragon in the hotel wonder if they charge extra.
“Heather,” again I got called. Now it was starting to make me mad. For days now this voice has been calling my name and when I go to respond I can’t find it.
“Stop calling my name and not telling me where you are,” I finally yelled and to my shock I heard laughter.
“She is getting mad, keep it up. It might be the only way to keep her with us,” a male voice said this time.
“I told you before I’m not going anyplace.” I could feel myself getting tired. “Ok maybe I lied, I think I will go in my room and get some sleep.”
I turned around and there in the hall sat my bed waiting for me. I didn’t stop to wonder why my bed appeared in the hall or why I would want to lie down and go to sleep when a lunatic kept coming after me.
I closed my eyes figuring when I opened them again I would either be dead or dying. I could feel something cold dripping on my face, the wind blowing the leaves in my room all over the place.
Wait a minute, I thought. How did leaves get into my room? It took me a while then I realized could not be in my room but in my car which at the moment sat upside down between two trees. There were lights and people all around me.
“Umm what?” I felt so confused . My head hurt so bad yet I felt warm for some reason. When I first headed to the hotel I had my sweatshirt off since then it felt pretty warm.
I looked and I had on the nice warm sweater I had bought at the thrift store. At least I think it looked like the same one. “Did I crash?”
“Heather,” a female was leaning in the car and holding my hand. She looked as if she felt cold.
“Yes. What happened? Did I hurt someone?” I felt so scared that the vision came true and I could be running away.
“No, someone hit your car as you were going to the hotel. We have been trying to get you out for several hours now. The storm has not being very nice to us.” She told me she put the sweater on me since she thought I would be cold with all the rain.
“So all I saw could still be a dream?” or quite possibly a nightmare, I couldn’t believe.
“You hit your head really hard,” she told me. The ambulance stood waiting and as soon as they could get me out they would.
“I didn’t kill anyone, what a relief.” I smiled and she said as soon as the doctors released me, the hotel would hold my reservation until the time I could get there.
“They are just sorry you will be missing the huge Halloween party. This year I hear they are putting on a murder mystery which should be great.” She smiled as I winced.
“I may not go after all.” I was thinking about all that had happened.
“I don’t blame you at all,” she smiled as if she knew something I didn’t. I closed my eyes and tried not to think about the cold look she gave me as she patted my arm.