September 30, 2007
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I gaze up, warily, at the aged Victorian. Stone gargoyles perched on either side of the entrance glare menacingly at passersby and I feel my skin begin to crawl. I peer through the wrought iron fence, a sliver of fear piercing my heart and settling into my veins. The manor conjures images of Vincent Price and I can almost hear the organ music playing in the background. As if on cue, the skies break open and a bolt of lightening strikes the bat-shaped weathervane. The house seems to groan and shudder before settling back into the landscape.

Mustering up the courage, I step over the threshold and shuffle towards the house. As I step closer to the manor, I notice a large mausoleum, covered in ivy and shrouded in darkness. Like the rest of the house, it seems unkempt. However, the gothic beauty overpowers my senses and I barely notice.
I reach the stoop and take hold of the moss-covered railing, beginning my ascent. A large brass knocker in the shape of a dragon’s head adorns the wooden door. I don’t bother using it, who would live here?

The door creaks open and I enter, timidly. I step into the foyer and notice a spiral staircase descending into the bowels of the house. My mind begins to warn me of the imminent danger I could be in. I try to stop, turn around, anything. But, my legs won’t obey and I continue my journey into the darkness.

Reaching the landing, I notice the only thing visible is a green light shining through the gaps of an ancient doorway. Stepping closer, I reach for the handle, turning the knob and entering the shadows.
Right away the source of light is revealed. Large, glass chambers are filled with a thick, murky viscous, lining the walls. The chambers are lit by neon green orbs and inhabited by something horrific.
I stare into the glass, my mind scarred by the terrifying images. Humans fill the chambers. Each body set in a different pose, like putrefied mannequins. The decomposition on each corpse is fetid and far worse than the one before.

I try to draw back, out of the doorway, but my feet are propelled forward. I stare into the glass, mouth agape. Who would do this? Why?

These questions pour from my mind and I decide to make my escape. I turn to leave, but the door that was once so close is now nowhere at all. I stare at my surroundings and it seems that the chambers are closer than before. I begin to feel discomfited, but not understanding why. That is, until I stare closer at the most repulsive corpse and come to a startled conclusion. It’s staring at me. Hard. As if this…thing is looking in to my soul, and I become entranced.

I hear a scratching sound. It takes a moment to realize what I’m hearing. When the realization hits me I become transfixed with fright. They want out. They aren’t as dead as I had originally thought, and now they want out. To roam and prowl to their rancid hearts’ content. I back as far away as possible, before hitting a wall.

I look around, seeking a way out of this nightmare. My eyes fix on a passage that wasn’t there before. I rush to exit this grisly test of courage, but as I approach, the passage seems to dwindle into nothingness, sealing my fate. I hear a sickening sound. A plopping, crunching thump invades my ears and I can no longer stand. I know what is waiting for me in the darkness. My feet give out and I tumble into an abyss of pitch black nothingness. I awaken and I am one of them. I am encased in a chamber of my own. I seek freedom, hungry for an escape from this horrible darkness. I am cold and I yearn for the warmth I once felt. There is nothing left except a bleak despair that I call home.

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