Estimated reading time — 20 minutes
It was a cold and lonely night as I drove mile after mile on barren roads that seemed to drag on forever and lead to nowhere. I had been driving for hours since i left home and ran away with my dad’s car. I don’t know what i was thinking, or where i am going. All i know is i had to get away. I had to get far away from home and never turn back.
After driving for another half an hour or so i finally came across what looked like a lot of farm land, and ranches. The road became more rugged, and dusty. It soon became a desert. Eventually I came across a flickering sign that read “Jack’s Motel.” I figured i would call it a night and get a room for myself to get some rest before continuing any further on the road to nowhere. I pulled up into one of the few empty parking spots and shut the car off. Before getting out, I took a good look around and didn’t see a single other car, so i wondered if anyone was even inside the motel. It did seem to be in pretty rough shape but that wasn’t going to stop me from taking shelter there for the night.
I stepped out of my Dad’s car and took a look down the road to see if any cars would be coming from either direction. But there was nothing. No headlights and nobody for miles beside the farm i had just passed. I shook off the feeling of lonely dread and walked up to the door of the shabby, run down Motel. As soon as i grabbed the door handle it broke off and the door slowly creaked open on its own. A chill shot down my spine as i glanced inside the dark, dusty motel and coughed a few times from dust as soon as i stepped inside. I started shivering and realized it was colder inside the motel than it was outside. I looked frantically back and forth around the motel and saw stains everywhere, from the ceiling, to the walls, to the floor. There were rats scampering about and garbage thrown here and there, the place was obviously abandoned and not fit to stay in.
I took a few more steps into the disgusting establishment and came across the front desk. There was what looked like dry blood splattered on the desk and walls, a painfully putrid aroma arose and i started choking and coughing. I covered my mouth and nose with my coat then started jogging towards the front door. I felt like i shouldn’t be there, like the place didn’t want me there.
And that smell…. it was like something burning…like flesh… and the blood..
I collapsed on the floor coughing more because of the dense fog of dust and the rank smell emitting from the foul building. I couldn’t take it anymore. I held my breath and stood up. I was dizzy, i couldn’t see straight. I felt like i was about to pass out. I slapped myself and tried to make it to the door, but i froze. I stood there staring out the door into the night sky frozen, as i felt hot breath on my neck. I heard a snapping sound, and then a growl. I didn’t want to know what it was, i just wanted to run for the door but i couldn’t move. And just as i was about to turn my head to see what was behind me, the front door slammed shut, leaving me in total darkness. The sound the door made as it slammed echoed through the building and its walls shook for a moment. Then everything fell silent. Everything except for my accelerated heart beat and frantic breathing.
I could not see a damn thing. I tried to calm my breathing down by taking in 3 deep breaths through my nose, but it didn’t help much. I reached my right hand into my pants pocket and dug my iphone out of there. I quickly turned the phone on, got past my passcode, and turned on the flashlight app. The phone’s flashlight was barely helpfully, since it only gave me enough light to see 2 feet in front of me. But it was good enough. I went to the front door and started banging on it, but it was no use. There was no doorknob now, and it just wouldn’t budge. The thought crossed my mind that maybe whatever was here actually wanted me to stay, rather than to leave as i previously thought. Another chill ran down my spine thinking about it so i shook my head and slapped myself a few times to make sure i was not dreaming. Of course, i wasn’t.
Using the phone’s small light i made my way back to the front desk and covered my mouth and nose using the neck of my shirt so i wouldn’t choke on the rancid smell again. I searched around the desk looking for a key, or anything useful. But all i could find was shattered glass and more blood stains. Just what the hell happened to this place? And why did i have to come in here? A creeping sense of paranoia came over me as the thoughts crossed my mind. I had to find a way out of this place.
Walking along the wall since the phone’s light could only illuminate so much, i came across a door. Room 101. The door would not open, and i still haven’t seen any keys around. As i continued tracing the wall all the way around the lobby i came to understand that there were 6 rooms and this, the lobby with the front desk, and that was it. A bit small for a Motel but then again i had no idea where i was or even what state i was in. I jumped suddenly when i heard a scratching sound and a rustling, only to realize it was just more rats digging through a bag of garbage in the corner. I walked back over to the front desk and went behind it to look around a little more. I got on my knees and waved the phone around as i looked and looked for something that could be of use, but there was nothing. Until finally, i spotted a small red switch hidden on the under side of the front desk. I pressed it gingerly and gasped as a door hidden in the wall opened up to my right. I stood up and crept over to the opened door and inspected it, taking in how well it was designed and hidden within the wall. I shone my light into the newly opened area and it was a hallway, so i went ahead inside and slowly made my way down the dark hall.
It wasn’t any brighter or better smelling in here, and the walls were tight, the ceiling low. It would make anyone feel claustrophobic. But i treaded on anyway, moving my phone’s light back and forth scanning the walls. At least there weren’t any stains on the green wallpaper that hugged the walls of this narrow corridor.
After walking down the hall for a few minutes i turned to look back at the way i came in but i couldn’t see anything behind me but blackness. So i just kept heading forward into the darkness. Every so often i would hear a drip drop of water, or a creak of old rusty pipes. But besides that it was just silent and still. My heart beat had calmed down a bit but my eyes still frantically scanned everything in every direction hoping that i would find a key, or something. Anything. Well, i got my wish. I stopped walking and a lump formed in my throat as i stood before a big, rusty, metal door that was at the end of the hall. There was a button to the left of it, so i pushed it. The door slide open slowly, the scratching noise it made was as bad as nails on a chalkboard. Once it finally opened i peeked inside and realized it was an elevator. So i figured i might as well see where it goes and i stepped into it. It moved and swung slightly as i stepped aboard, it must be old and not in proper working condition. But i didn’t care. I had no choice. No where else to go. I waved my phone light around until i spotted the panel of buttons for each floor. There was 1, which I’m guessing is the floor I’m on, the ground floor. Then there was a B1, and a B2. Two basement floors for a motel? Sure, why not. I pressed B1 and the door squealed shut. The elevator starting moving downwards, it made so much rattling and squealing noise that i had to cover my ears as I descended down into the unknown darkness that lay below.
The elevator finally reached the first basement floor and came to a sudden stop. The door squealed open, i of course was still covering my ears and had my eyes closed until i heard the silence again. I slowly let my hands down from my ears and opened my eyes to see what new darkness lay before me. I saw nothing but blackness, except for a glowing, pulsating red door that was about 20 feet from where the elevator was straight ahead. I stepped out into the dark void and moved my light around to see if i could illuminate anything in the room but there was nothing there. The darkness seemed to stretch on for eternity. Theres was nothing, but the red, infernal door. I had no choice but to check it out. So i slowly crept towards the door, tip toeing, trying to make as little noise as possible in hopes that nothing would jump out at me. I reached the door and was hesitant to reach my hand for the handle, so i took a deep breathe first and rest my hand on the middle of the door. It was warm, but not hot. The warmth was strangely comforting. But what happened next was entirely discomforting. I slowly moved my head towards the red door and pressed my ear against it for a brief moment. And what i heard shocked me beyond belief. I stumbled away from the door and fell onto my back, then started crawling away from it frantically. I had to get away from it. I got to my feet and bolted to the elevator. I crashed inside it and sat down, i buried my face into my knees and desperately tried to hold back the tears that were welling up inside my eyes. I sat there shivering, panting, panicking for a few minutes. I finally caught my breath and calmed down a bit then stood up and frantically mashed the B2 button. Id rather hear the screeching elevator than what i heard behind that door.
The sounds emanating from that wretched door were like thousands of voices, screaming, tortured voices. Yelling in agony and pain as they were burning in hell thats all i could picture in my head when i heard it. I shook my head and slapped myself again, telling myself it was all a dream, and that i would wake up from this nightmare soon. But i new better.
The elevator screeched and squealed as it took me down deeper into this hell hole. I really did not want to see what was down on the next floor, but i really had no choice. The elevator stopped when it reached its destination, my final destination. And when the door opened i nearly puked my lungs up at what i saw. There was no B2, or even a B1. There was nothing, but that damn door. That red, burning, screaming, pulsating door that was just there in the darkness. I had no way out. The only way left to go was in. Into the hell that was behind that door, and that for some reason was hidden beneath this cursed motel. I closed my eyes and took 3 deep breaths then made my way across the darkness and towards the bloody blazing door. I started feeling angry. Frustrated that i ended up in this situation. I was pissed at my family and thats why i left home. And now im pissed off at this motel for being so fucked up. I grabbed the door handle and threw the door open then rushed inside screaming my head off. “Get away from you stupid fucking demons! Screw this place. And fuck all this crazy bullshit! I just want to be alone in piece and quiet!”
I had my eyes closed as i entered the door screaming and was afraid to open my eyes. But when i heard the sound of people talking, the rustling of shoes on the wood floor and the creak of loose floor boards, i quickly flipped my eyelids open and stood there with my mouth agape as i saw where i now was. It was the motel. I had just come in through the front door. There were two people in line at the front desk waiting to get a key for the rooms they were renting. I slowly walked forward towards the front desk and gazed back and forth, looking at the clean, fresh and new motel. It looked like it had just opened. There were no stains, no blood or trash or rats. I couldn’t believe what i was seeing. I got in line and waited until the other people got there keys and went to their rooms. The man at the front desk was tall and slender, he had greasy, slicked back black hair and a short mustache. He wore a crooked smile, and had on a nice red suit with a black tie.
“How can i help you sir?”
He asked in a casual tone.
“Uhm, ill take a key to a room, i guess?”
I said nervously and sounded unsure. I was unsure of anything at that point.
He turned around and grabbed the last key that was available.
“Here you are, room 106. That’ll be 10 dollars for a night’s stay.”
He held out his hand with the key in it and the other to take my money. I reached into my pocket and pulled out my wallet then handed the man a 20 dollar bill. He took it with a grin then said, “Please enjoy your stay.”
He said it in menacing voice and chuckled afterwards, then he walked away and disappeared from sight into the bathroom. I looked at the key in my hand with a red tag that read, “106.” I took a look to the left, then the right and found that the room was the last on the right, next to where the secret passage was. I walked over to the room and opened the door with the key then quickly entered and shut the door behind me.
I looked around the room and was astonished at how clean and orderly it was. I searched around the room for any clues about what the hell was going on but didn’t find anything out of the ordinary or anything helpful. Until i checked the drawers of the night stand next to the bed, that is. There was a nice crisp newspaper in the top drawer. I pulled it out and gasped when i read the title of the article, “serial killer on the loose in outskirts of Nevada.” I blinked a few times and stared at the newspaper for a few moments, “so i made it from Florida all the way to Nevada? Damn what a drive.” The article went on about missing peoples and victims of the serial killer, no lead on his identity or anything much more about the whole thing. But then i saw what the date on the paper was and nearly had a heart attack. Somehow, some way, i was back in 1969. “How is this possible!? Did i travel through time or something?” I sat down on the bed still holding the paper, shocked and in disbelief of how I could be back in time.
After pondering and wondering for a few minutes I got up, tucked the newspaper into my pants, then exit the room and walked around the motel lobby inspecting it, looking around for any signs as to how it could be possible to have gone back in time. But of course, I couldn’t find anything helpful. I looked outside through the window and gazed into the starry night sky. I figured i would just get some rest and look around more for answers tomorrow. So, i went back to my room and opened the door, glancing at the front desk before entering. It seemed strange that the guy from the front desk wasn’t standing there now and was no where in site. I wondered if he had gone through the secret passage way, but i didn’t want to think about it any more right now. I just needed to get some sleep. I walked into my room closing the door behind me gently. I took the newspaper and set it on the night stand then leaped onto the bed and sunk right into it. I nearly passed out as soon as my eyelids shut.
I was awoken at 2:13 am by the sound of a woman shrieking. It was a bloodcurdling scream, of panic and fear. But then everything fell silent again. I sat up in bed and listened carefully for a moment but heard nothing more. I shook it off and thought maybe it was just some girl screaming outside being chased by a coyote or armadillo or something. The thought made me giggle a little, but then i yawned and laid my head back down closing my eyes once again drifting into slumber.
A few moments later before i was fully asleep, i heard my door creak open, i didn’t want to open my eyes to look so i stay laying in bed pretending to be asleep. A man approached me and once reaching the bed he leapt on top of me, covering my mouth with a rag that i suppose was drugged. I became woozy and dazed and could not struggle or fight him, nor could i scream for help. He threw the blankets off me and shredded my clothes off me piece by piece. He tossed aside the rag since i was already drugged enough and placed a ball gag in my mouth. I was so frightened that i should have been trembling and sobbing but i couldn’t do anything. I was frozen in terror and could only watch the man have his way with me. For a moment my vision became clear and i got a good glimpse of the man’s face. It was the guy at the front desk who gave me the key to the room. The owner of the motel. He was nude and rubbing his erect penis against me ready to rape me, and in one hand he held a large knife. He flipped me onto my stomach and plunged his penis into my hindquarters. Thankfully i could not feel a thing. But still the whole thing was just too much, just too wrong. But when he stuck the knife into my back several times while still molesting me, i felt nothing but agony. So much sharp pain that i managed to let out a loud terrified scream through the ball gag that easily would have woken everyone else in the establishment. And thats when he pressed the cold bloodied knife against my throat, and sliced it open….
I awoke instantly at that moment gasping for breath, panting like a dog, sweating profusely. I looked at my hands then checked my throat and my back to make sure i was alright. There was no cuts, no blood. Nothing ever happened. I thought, “how could that have been a dream?” But i soon had an answer when i turned my head and once again was face to face with the wretched red door. I stood up and looked around into the empty darkness, seeing nothing but the red door. I shook my head and tried to make sense of it all but i couldn’t.
After a few minutes of pacing back and forth in front of the door, i came to this conclusion. “So the serial killer the news paper mentioned was this motel’s owner. And i was his next victim. But if that was the past i just had a glimpse at, i must have been seeing it through someone else’s eyes.” I continued pacing and scratching my head thinking about it more, still in shock that i experienced being raped and murdered. But i was glad it was all just a vision. A vision that this horrid door let me see. And i had no where else to go, but to enter the hell behind that door again.
I took a few deep breaths then reached my hand out to grab the door handle. But i hesitated. I really did not want to see what was going to be behind that door next, but i had no other options. I gripped the handle firmly and swung the door open. I gazed inside and saw pure white. No shapes, no figures, no shadows. Just empty white. I figured that would be a nice change from empty black so i sighed as i stepped inside. But as i expected, the white suddenly faded and now i was somewhere else. I heard distant screaming and pounding in every direction. I looked around and saw cages, cells lining the walls going down for what looked like miles. They’re were what looked like people inside the cells, but they were mangled. Twisted. Contorted beyond belief. One to my right slammed its eyeless face into the bars of the cell and screeched at me. Green ooze dripped from its mouth as it chewed at the bars with its jagged teeth, trying to escape i presumed. I backed away slowly and gulped down the wads of saliva forming in my throat, then to my surprise a pair of hands wrapped around my shoulders and pulled me into the bars of the cell that was behind me. The creature holding me was screaming and howling in my ears and scratching my shoulders up as it tried pulling me through the bars. I started panicking and managed to wiggle free of its grip. I decided it would be best to stay in the middle of the isle and not get close to any of the hideous beings locked in the cells.
“What in god’s name is this place? How could something like this even exist!? “
I started running and just kept my eyes on the floor ahead of me. I didn’t want to look at any of the wretched things i just wanted to get out if there. I ran for what seemed like hours until i wore myself out and collapsed, gasping for air. On my knees breathing heavily, one of the creatures from the cells to my left reached out a long boney finger through the bars and pointed it at me. Then it spoke in a low, gnarled, feminine voice, “flesh…give me your flesh mortal!!”
It hissed and screeched then all the others around started wailing and slamming the bars. They all wanted me, my flesh. I scrambled to my feet and started sprinting again. After another few minutes of running i saw what looked like a big black door at the end of the hall. I cracked a smile thinking it would be my way out but i would soon find out that i was mistaken.
As soon as i reached the door i grabbed the big metal handle, turned it and threw the door open then ran inside without even looking into the room first. The door slammed itself behind me and everything fell silent. The screaming and pounding stopped, finally. But now i was in total darkness again.
Suddenly a bright white light above me blinked on nearly blinding me. Next thing i knew i was laying on a steel table, strapped to it. This looked familiar, the big light aimed at me laying on a metal table, strapped at the wrists and ankles… where have i seen this before?
Suddenly i could hear voices around me, mumbling. A man in a blue outfit with a surgical mask over his face approached me out of the darkness.
“Shall we begin?”
As he said this, numerous other doctors surrounded me, putting on latex gloves, about to perform surgery…on me!?
“W-wait.. w-w whats goin on here?”
I became frantic and started yelling and squirming, trying to get away but i was bound. One doctor pulled out a large needle and injected it into my arm. It stung like a bee, i screamed louder but the injection quickly took affect and i became tired. I drifted into a trance like state before blacking out completely. Before my eyes shut i saw a dark, black figure standing behind one of the doctors. It had horns on its head and fire in its eyes. I went unconscious.
I awoke in an empty hallway. Once again shrouded in darkness, and in complete silence. I breathed only through my nose to keep as quiet as possible as i stood up and dusted myself off. The walls of the hallway were pure gray, no texture, no definition. Just pure gray. They seemed to stretch on forever ahead of me, and there was a blank wall behind me. So i started treading down the hall softly, staying as quiet as i could, making sure i could hear if anything was going to come at me. As i continued walking down the blank gray halls, i noticed things began to change. The walls slowly were gaining texture, though it looked pixelated at first. But as i continued onward they became more solid and life-like. They stayed gray but became faded, and rustic with brown spots of rust and grime here and there. I gulped the wad of saliva forming in my mouth down and continued quietly making my way through the endless ever-changing hallway.
The further i went down the hall the more gruesome it became. The gray became taken over by rust, the walls getting more rusty, brown and dusty the farther i went. I started noticing things changing more, like the walls were warping, no longer straight and the floor became crooked and curving. The walls were pure rust and pieces of rust were flaking off the ceiling, some landing in my hair. The air became so thick and dusty i started coughing and choking. I had to cover my mouth and nose with my shirt, which seemed to help a bit. I became dizzy, trying to focus and navigate through the twisting rusty halls, but it became increasingly difficult. The walls were curved and bending, the ceiling seemed to dip down in spots making me have to crouch, the floor shifted in spots were i would step so i would end up bouncing from wall to wall until i got straight again. I began panicking, my heart was racing i could barely breathe so i started running. I ran down the twisted path the best i could but it wasn’t easy staying stable. I stumbled a few times but kept going. I noticed the walls and floor begin to straighten out and suddenly i was once again in a straight normal hallway. But the walls were still complete rust and the hall still seemed to stretch on for an eternity.
As i continued walking, i let my shirt down and took in some refreshing deep breaths which helped calm my nerves, but it didn’t last long. The walls began oozing blood, it dripped down from the edges where the ceiling met the walls. I started running again, i needed to get out of there fast. I kept looking back and forth, from wall to wall as i ran. More and more blood poured down the walls turning them into solid waterfalls of blood. Yet, the floor did not accumulate any and stayed solid. Without even noticing i had reached the end of the hall and slammed right into a dead end. I was paying so much attention to the changing walls that i hadn’t even been looking straight ahead. I fell back and landed on my ass with a thud. “Oof! …ow dammit.”
I shook my head then got to my feet and rubbed my cheeks to make sure my hip was still intact. I turned around and saw that there was another wall now from where i had just come from. I was boxed in, walls on each side of me. They seemed to close in on me, and i became frantic.
“N-no, this cant be happening!”
I pounded on the walls screaming as the box i was in slowly shrank. It became tighter and tighter, and got so hard to breathe. My vision blurred and i collapsed to my knees, then blacked out once again.
I awoke suddenly, still in a panic. I checked every part of my body to make sure i was still alive and pinched myself a couple times. I was ok, so i stood up, took in some deep breaths and tried to calm myself down, keeping my eyes shut because i didn’t want to see any more of the nightmare i was experiencing. I finally calmed down and gathered the courage to open my eyes, then gasped and shuttered when i saw where i was. It was where i started, the blank, gray, never ending hallway. I was so frustrated that i slammed my fist into the wall, but my hand just bounced back and didn’t even put a dent into the wall, just left me with aching bruised knuckles. I sighed and started once again walking down the bleak gray hall of despair. I was loosing hope, loosing the will to go forth. But i had only one choice. I had to keep moving and find the end of this damn nightmare.
The walls stayed the same gray and never seemed to change this time, no matter how far i walked. Eventually i could see a wall at the end of the hall, a dead end. Before even reaching the end of the hall i decided to turn around and start heading back the way i came, maybe that was all i needed to do, i wondered. But i was met quickly with another dead end wall, the hall was still changing, but in a different way. I turned around and started jogging back down the other way, and again hit another wall. I continued this for a good 10 minutes. Running back and forth from wall to wall, the halls continuously becoming shorter, and thinner. Until eventually the hall was so narrow i could barely fit in it, and the hall was only about 20 feet long. I stood at one end of the hall backed up against the wall staring down at the other end. I silenced my breathing for a moment and listened closely. I could hear a distant buzzing sound, like a whirring of a machine or something. I stayed still and listened as the noise seemed to grow louder, and closer every second. I heard a few thuds in the mix and the buzzing became louder and closer like a swarm of flies coming towards me. At the other end of the hall an image of a pitch black face appeared, with empty eyes and a hole for a mouth. I could see the gray wall behind the floating black face through the eye holes and mouth, but the rest of it was just solid black. I began panting, my heart pounding in my chest. The face just hovered there as the noise grew louder and louder, making my face cringe it became so deafening. The face screeched and flew right at me from across the hall, it passed right through me and it felt like it ripped my soul right out of me. I was shrouded in total darkness and blacked out, AGAIN.
I opened my eyes and blinked a few times, looking up at the white ceiling of my room. I felt the warm blankets over me, and the sweat leaking from my pores. My bed was soaked and i felt nauseous, i threw the blankets off and sat up in a daze. My head hurt like a drill had just been ran through my skull, but i shook it off and looked around my room confused for a moment. Then it all came to me.
“M-m-my room… im in my bed…i…im home…”
I got up from the bed and smelled the fresh smell of eggs and bacon being cooked for breakfast, my dad’s usual. I checked everything in my room making sure it was all there and that it was real, then I pinched myself and squealed when I did. I was back. I was home and alright. It was all just a stupid dream. A nightmare. Yet, why when I pinched myself in the dream had i not woke up? I felt it in the dream, and everything there seemed so real. Was this even real? Was it really over?
I ran downstairs and through the living room and stormed into the kitchen, finding my dad and little sister there eating breakfast. I smiled and hugged my dad tighter than i ever had, almost making him choke on the eggs in his mouth.
“Ggaahgg, jeez son what has gotten into you?”
I didn’t answer him and went over to my sister doing the same to her and kissed her forehead.
“It’s finally over, im finally back home!”
“What the heck are you goin on about son?” My dad asked.
I answered with, “n-nothing dad. I.. i just had one hell of a nightmare.. but its ok, im ok.. its all alright now.”
I sat in an empty chair at the table and joined them for breakfast.
So in the end, what i had experienced was nothing more than a dream. But i have never had such a strange, surreal, and vivid dream ever before. Maybe my subconscious traveled somewhere, or something someone experienced was shone to me in a dream. Whatever it was, i was just glad it was over. As the days went by, more and more of the nightmare faded from my memory and i continued my everyday life as normal. The one thing that never left my mind, though, was the motel. The owner, and how he raped and killed me. It was all too real and i just couldn’t shake it off. At night i could never fall asleep, i just stare at the ceiling and wait for monsters to come out of the darkness to eat me, but they never do. My dad had me start taking zquil and other sleep meds but it didn’t help much. Ill never have another sound night’s rest after that dream..
CREDIT : John Zanger