The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
All Trevor had to do was find something in Harper Asylum to bring back, to prove he’d gone inside. He was too old for dares, urban exploring wasn’t his thing, but he wasn’t going to give the dicks he went to school with the chance to gloat that he’d chickened out.
It isn’t so bad.
He kept tolling himself that, kept walking, though he wanted to run for the basement door he’d broken into. Wherever that was in the scheme of things.
The place had more hall than rooms. He kept getting turned around. Debris littered the floor, but there was nothing he could easily take with him. Nothing that would scream that he’d upheld his part of the bargain.
How long have I been here? He was grateful for the sunlight – he wasn’t crazy enough to break in at night – grateful the strange cold he’d entered had dropped away.
The unease wouldn’t leave him, though. Neither would the pricking urge that something was off. I’ve got no business here. This is stupid. Stupid, stupid bet. The thought wouldn’t leave him, kept pace with his feet along the dim, dull, continuous hallway.
Something wasn’t right. It couldn’t be. There was no way the hall could match the outside of the building.
As soon as the notion occurred to him, the turn appeared about ten feet ahead. Weird. Trevor braced himself before he turned into the doorway.
More hall. More dilapitdated grey walls. More pipes. More dirty light that made him feel heavier, more depressed. He couldn’t hear his own footsteps despite the quiet. He couldn’t orient himself.
Voices made him freeze. He couldn’t afford to get caught by the cops. Shit. What if those idiots called them just to mess with me?
“I really don’t think we should be here!” a girl’s voice pleaded. She sounded around his age, but he didn’t recognize her when she and her friend came into view at the end of the hall. Which was also odd, given how long it had been a moment ago.
“Relax! No one comes in here. I wanna check it out. We’ll be quick, I swear.” Her friend was taller, brunette to the first girl’s blonde, and obviously braver. She waved a light, but it was on a small rectangular box, no type of flashlight that Trevor had ever seen.
He watched the girls approach, made up his mind to team up with them, though he had no idea who they were and their clothes were a little weird. He didn’t have the energy to judge their life choices. Screw the bet, I’m getting out of here!
“Hey,” he tried, softly to not scare them, but the pair didn’t look over at him, even though they were five feet away. “Hello?” He tried again, louder, but they just kept walking. He jumped right in their path. “Knock it off, this isn’t funny!”
They walked right through him and froze on his far side.
“Hey, did you feel that?” The blonde asked, grabbing her friend’s shoulder.
“Huh? No, what?”
“I dunno. Something. Kiera, I really don’t like it here…”
He broke into a run, didn’t wait to hear any more. He didn’t want to face the obvious or stick around to discover the truth.
No. No way. I will get out of here. I will.
First, he had to find his body.
Trevor turned a corner and the grey hall stretched on for miles.
He started walking anyway.
Fiction © Copyright Selah Janel
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More from Author Selah Janel:
Like many young men at the end of the 1800s, Bill signed on to work in a logging camp. The work is brutal, but it promised a fast paycheck with which he can start his life. Unfortunately, his role model is Big John. Not only is he the camp’s hero, but he’s known for spending his pay as fast as he makes it. On a cold Saturday night they enter Red’s Saloon to forget the work that takes the sweat and lives of so many men their age. Red may have plans for their whiskey money, but something else lurks in the shadows. It watches and badly wants a drink that has nothing to do with alcohol. Can Bill make it back out the shabby door, or does someone else have their own plans for his future?
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Women in Horror Month 10