I can still recall the strong smell of incense and from outside, beneath the door of the entrance is a fog ominously trying to sneak out from inside. I remember thinking that the Horror Booth staff really did a good job in trying to scare the shit out of people even before entering. I couldn’t wait to see what they have in store for everyone as I lined up with my friend Jenny. It was the University’s Founder’s Day, it’s bound to be a fun day!

I’m not really one who is easily scared, so I was hoping that time I’d be scared af when I get out of that place. I guess, it’s true what they say, be careful what you wish for. The group that went in before us had just finished the entire horror journey and their screaming was replaced with laughter on the other side of the area. The guides were back and started on with the guidelines and such.

Even before entering, everyone behind me had already started to yell. Most of the guys were pretending to be scared and if I’d known better, they really were scared.

Once inside, we couldn’t care less on the scaring tactics of the staff because we were all having too much fun pretending to be scared. There were people trying to grab my feet, I could hear Jenny screaming, and I couldn’t see a thing. I think it would have been better if they’d put on some dim lighting because I could not (at all) make out anyone from inside and I was right behind the first guide, who has a small light dangling in his chest. I just know that Jenny was just right behind me and the guide in front of me because I was holding their hands.

Maybe after about a minute of fooling around, someone blew powder to my face and it itched. My nose itched and my eyes felt some sort of dust get into it. I fought my way out of the guide’s grip as I heard him saying, “Don’t let go.” but the itch was too much so I had to temporarily let go of them both to clear my eyes and scratchm my nose a bit.

I heard Jenny call out my name as she bumped into me.

“I’m here, I’m here. Give me your hand” I said.

We found each other’s hand right away but I couldn’t find the guide so I called out to him. No response. I asked Jenny if she is still holding hands with the person next to her and I need not continue because whoever she is, screamed from behind Jenny. I just laughed. Since I was the first in line and I’m no longer with the guide, I screamed out that the guide was gone but no one seemed to hear me being that they’re having too much fun. Instead, I followed a light, a light that flickers. I assumed it was the guide but he was moving pretty quickly, so I had to hasten my pace a bit while the others had been pushing. Oddly, I couldn’t see the light behind me. The second guide was supposed to be right out back.

I continued to follow the light while dragging everyone with me wherever the light went. Then what seemed to be almost like forever, Jenny had started to complain and all of a sudden, she’s let go. Just like that I wasn’t holding her hand anymore and there was utter silence. All the yelling, the laughing – gone. I called out to Jenny, no response. I called on to anyone, and there was just bleak silence. I turned around hoping to see something but there was nothing. It was like being stuck in an endless abyss. No one is trying to scare me anymore, it’s as if I got pulled out of the horror house and placed somewhere else.

“Where am I?” I kept asking myself as I ran towards anywhere. My palms were up, just in case I hit a wall. The running felt endless so I sat and rested for a bit. Then the room went cold. I sat in a fetal position on the floor and continuously kept rubbing my hands together to keep me warm. It wasn’t this cold earlier. I just thought that maybe it was because I was just stationary. If I move a lot, then I won’t feel so cold. So I got up again and started running again. Nothing. There was nothing. It was all pitch black and what scares me the most is that I have not bumped into anything at all. No walls. Just a lot of floors.

I crouched down on the floor again and cried like a baby. Every part of me was so tired and scared and cold. “I want out. Please, I just want out!” I yelled. Then there was a loud banging somewhere like someone is trying to kick a door down. So I immediately got up hoping it was help. Just as I did though, I could feel a wall right behind me. I barely moved an inch to my right then there was another wall. When I moved to my left, another one. I held my hand up and I could feel a flat sturdy cement. I was boxed in!!! I was so freaked out, I could barely breathe. I was trying to catch a breath of air of some sort, any. But I couldn’t. My hands were sweaty and cold and I had just screamed and screamed and screamed so loud, I fainted.

When I got back to my consciousness, I saw Jenny’s face first. I was so relieved I hugged her right away and was so thankful it was just a dream. When I looked around though, I can see concern in her face and everyone was there… Everyone I went inside the house with.

“It wasn’t a dream” I whispered, still confused.

A professor’s face came into view and she just said:

“We found you screaming so loud in the second floor. It’s a good thing the guard checked it out, we could barely hear it.”

I chuckled at that thought and threw my head back. I thought I might have just accidentally slept inside the building and had a bad dream that’s why they found me screaming. It wasn’t real, I tried to convince myself. The gave me a huge relief that I didn’t really question anything anymore, I just wanted to go home. I said I was fine and asked if I could go home to which the Professor approved. Jenny said she’d take me home on her car instead and I was so tired, I just nodded and held on to her.

When we were in the car, she was looking a little perturbed though.

“Are you sure you’re okay?” Jenny asked.

“Yes. A little light-headed but I’m fine.” I responded calmly.

“That was weird, wasn’t it?” She added trying to chuckle a laugh but not succeeding.

I nodded but said, “Well, I bet everyone gets lost in the dark every now and then. How did you find me anyway?”

“Inside, you let go of my hand and the guide’s hand. I got lost too. After everyone’s gone through the Horror House, they realized that both of us were missing. So the staff decided not to let anyone in the area and turned on all the lights inside.” She said like she’s trying to put it as clear as possible.

“They found me right away. I was circling the room and had one hand in front and the other behind me as if I was holding someone, but really, I was alone. I only stopped as soon as someone approached me and told me what happened.” She looked scared as shit and as if she was about to cry.

“Oh Dear. I’m so sorry that happened. God! That’s scary! It’s good they found your right away though.”

“Yes, At least.” She paused. I thought she wasn’t to add anything to that but she spoke again, “But you… We thought we’d never find you!”

She cried so hard and parked the car at the side of the road, wailing.

“What do you mean? How long were you out looking for me” I asked.

What I heard next was something I could not believe…

“4 hours. We were looking for you for four hours.” She said not looking at me.

“What?!” I was in shock! “What do you mean 4 hours. You found me right away, didn’t you? I was just in the second floor!” I was close to yelling at her.

“Yes, you were. But you weren’t supposed to be. They closed it down and used ground floor only. All the rooms there were locked.” She looked at me still crying, but her stare… It was a little unsettling. Then she added “How did you get there?” She looked at me scared like she wasn’t sure if I was still the same person.

I immediately looked away and said “Please, take me home.”

It’s been 10 years, but I’ve never forgotten… nor have I figured it out. How did I get there when I don’t recall climbing up a stair?

MR @ 2016

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