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It only took one night for me to come to the conclusion that all of reality, everything that we have ever known, is nothing but a myth. One night for me to come face to face with the fact that anything can be distorted, that the impossible is possible. One little visit to one little motel made me fear everything, and now I am sitting here waiting to die.
I arrived in Black Rock, New Mexico early; that's what started it. I was supposed to be there a day later than I actually arrived, where I would meet my parents after they returned from their trip to Vegas. You see, I had moved away to the east coast quite some time ago from Santa Fe, New Mexico and hadn't seen my parents in ages. As it would turn out, my work brought me to New Mexico and I found the time to visit them in their new home in Black Rock. However, my meetings were rescheduled, and so I turned up a day early and, with no way to enter my parents' new home—and taking into account the minute size of the town—I figured I'd be sleeping in my car. However, as I was just about to drift off, I heard the distinct sound of my phone ringing.
"Hello?" I answered in a groggy, dazed voice that would signify to anyone that I had just woken up.
"Frank! Frank, I'm sorry we couldn't make it back early." I could hear my dad on the other end, but it was a bit odd. It was as if he were standing very far away. I figured I was on speakerphone.
"It's okay, Dad. How are you guys? Was your trip fun?" I asked, feeling a bit happy as I had missed my parents, having not seen them for roughly three years.
"Yeah, we're great, Frank. Just great. Hey, I'm guessing you're sleeping in your car? Well, I can't bear to see an important businessman such as yourself uncomfortable!" my dad said with a laugh, one in which I joined him. "There's a new motel just a little north of the town! It's obviously not in a very popular spot but it gives plenty of travelers a place to stay. It's called the Everett; I'm sure they have a vacancy!"
Just like my dad, always looking out for me. I have to say I was not displeased to hear this at all. "Thanks, Dad! Hey, how's Mom feeling? Can I talk to her?" I asked.
"Yeah, we're great, Frank. Just great. Hey, I'm guessing you're sleeping in your car? Well, I can't bear to see an important businessman such as yourself uncomfortable!"
"Dad, you already said that," I said with a laugh, thinking perhaps his short-term memory had taken a hit; poor guy was getting old.
"Did I?" he asked, his voice sounding much farther away now. "I have to go. Now. Everett Motel. There's a vacancy." The call suddenly ended.
"What an odd way to end a conversation...," I said with a mumble. But I was tired, and relieved to hear a motel was close by, so I thought nothing of it.
The Everett Motel was about a mile and a half north of Black Rock, right in the middle of nowhere. It looked pretty shoddy I must say, but, again, my eyelids felt like bricks and I was fighting to remain conscious. The sign was green, and a bit rusty, which was odd for a new motel, but sure enough the red "Vacancy" sign blared bright as day. I parked my car and began my walk to the office. Looking around the lot I saw three other cars parked. There was my black Mercedes rented car, a beat up red Ford pick-up, a green Honda Civic, and a white Chevy Malibu. Obviously, my car stuck out like a sore thumb. I let out a light chuckle and walked in the front door, where I was greeted by the clang of a bell.
There stood a young man behind the desk. "Hello, sir! How are you tonight?" He said in a ridiculously cheery voice. I was guessing that it was some sort of serve-them-with-a-smile bullshit this kid was supposed to do.
Ignoring his question and just wanting to get to my bed, I was rather short with him. "I'll take any room."
"Would you like a double or to die?" he asked with a smile.
What the fuck did he just say? "I'm sorry, what?"
The kid looked back with a frown. "I asked if you would like a double or a queen, sir."
It figured it was just my sleepiness getting to me, so I asked for a queen, charged my credit card and headed out to my room. When I walked out to the parking lot, however, I noticed there was a 5th car parked directly beside mine, an old El Camino that was so covered in rust I couldn't tell what color it should have been. I thought this quite funny, seeing such a terrible car parked against my own. As I proceeded to my room, Room 2, I passed the first, hearing a few kids laughing and a T.V. blaring. Great, hillbilly parents that didn't take care of their kids next door. I was sure I'd wake up to them screaming the next morning. As I inserted my key into the lock I felt quite a shock. I jerked my hand back, cursing and sucking my finger. What the fuck was this place so shoddy for? It was just built. I tried the lock again, feeling no shock, and entered my room.
This was nothing like the high-end hotels I was now used to. It looked like something out of a 70's sitcom, very cheesy and tacky, not to mention out-of-date. Everything had an annoyingly bright orange flower pattern printed on it. I cared not, however, and instead flung the sheets off the mattress and collapsed, ready to welcome a good night's sleep. Just as I was drifting off I heard a voice call from the other side of the wall. "Nice Mercedes you got there!" I decided to just pretend I was asleep rather than engage this backroads hick in conversation and closed my eyes. I again was just about to be greeted with the sweet warmth of a long rest when I heard the voice again, louder this time. "I said, nice Mercedes you got there!"
"Thanks! But apologies, I'm very tired. I'd gladly talk to you about it in the morning, however!" I called out. I waited for a response but no response came. So again, I decided to turn over and go to sleep.
"NICE MERCEDES YOU GOT THERE!" I heard the voice scream from the other side of the wall.
"SIR, THANK YOU, BUT I AM TRYING TO SLEEP!" I yelled back.
"NICE MERCEDES YOU GOT THERE!" That was it. I stormed out of my room and pounded on Room 3's door. I kept pounding until a middle-aged man answered the door.
"Sir, I am trying to sleep. Can you please stop being rude and we can talk cars in the morning?" I said. The man rubbed his eyes and nodded in response. It was a bit odd, it looked as if I just woke him up and he wasn't really registering what I was saying. I allowed him to close the door and began walking back to my room when something caught my eye. The green Honda Civic was now parked next to my car, and the rusty El Camino was parked where the Civic once was. That's odd, why the switch? Why didn't I hear or see who switched them? I shrugged it off, now more annoyed than anything, and stormed into my room once again collapsing in bed. I glanced at the clock—it was 1:48 a.m. -- and I drifted off shortly after.
I awoke to a very loud bang, making me shoot upright. I looked over at the clock, 2:44 a.m. Looking around my dark room I saw nothing, so I flicked on the light to see what had happened. As I leaned over another bang rang out through the night. I jumped onto my feet and instantly readied myself for a showdown with some backroads thief who saw my Mercedes and decided I would have money on me. "NICE CHEVY YOU GOT THERE!" I heard the man from Room 3 scream. I stormed out of my room and once again proceeded to pound on his door, only this time there was no answer. I glanced over to my car and, to my shock, saw the Malibu parked where I once did. What the fuck!? I began to freak out, scanning the parking lot and quickly finding my own to be parked where the pick-up once was. In fact, all the cars were switched around. I pounded on the man in Room 3's door for a bit longer and then decided to go and see the manager.
I walked in the front office and began furiously ringing the bell. A groggy elderly gentleman walked from the back room. "Hello?" he asked. I proceeded to explain to him all that was going on and he looked back with a frown. Finally I caved and asked him what was the matter.
"The cars haven't moved at all, sir, and Room 3 is vacant." No, I demanded he follow me to the proof and, grabbing Room 3's key, he did. Outside, however, I was shocked to see the cars were all in their original positions. The old man gave me a concerned look and we continued to Room 3 which he unlocked and, after looking around it for quite some time, found it to be empty.
"I'm sorry... It must've been a dream, sir." I apologized.
"No, it's quite alright. Have a good night, Mr. Danning," the old man said with a smile and then left for the front office.
Now that I was wide awake, I decided to take a shower to clear my head. The clock now read 2:30 a.m., which made me come to the conclusion that I did, in fact, dream the entire confrontation at Room 3 and moving cars. I proceeded to strip free of my clothes and step into the very warm, relaxing shower. All was well until I heard my T.V. begin blazing from the front room. "Hello?" I called out. There was no answer. A bit worried now, I opened the curtain and tried my best to use the mirror to see into the room, but it was to no avail. I closed the curtain and quickly turned the shower off, then proceeded to put on my boxers and step out into my bathroom. "Hello?" I called out again, stepping over to the doorway cautiously. As I stood in the doorway I came face to face with the young man who had checked me in. "What the hell are you doing in my room!?" I asked, rather angry at this point.
"I can't be in your room?" he asked with a rather puzzled look on his face.
"What the fuck? No! I'm trying to sleep! Do you do this to everyone's room?"
"Well no, but this is my room, too, isn't it?"
At this point I was getting real tired of his shit. I stepped towards him but suddenly, he jumped forward, pushing me back into the bathroom and slamming the door shut. I let out a slew of threats and curses and threw the door open as hard as I could, ready to wring his scrawny little neck, when I stopped dead in my tracks. The front room was upside down. I stood on the ceiling of the room and, looking up, I could see the bed, the blaring T.V., all my possessions and the furniture seemingly suspended in mid-air. I began to pinch myself, to try and slap myself awake, but nothing I did worked. I closed my eyes very tight, and suddenly I was falling, slamming onto the ground.
When I opened my eyes, I found myself lying on the side of my bed. I jumped up, the room looking normally, the clock reading 2:50 a.m. It took me a little while, but I finally came to the conclusion I must have been dreaming. I must have fallen out of bed during a crazy dream. However, my nerves were definitely getting the best of me. I decided I needed a smoke, but realized I left the pack in the car. I let out a heavy sigh and stepped out into the night. I walked towards my car and fumbled with the keys, pressing the unlock button and reaching for the handle of my Mercedes. However, it wasn't my Mercedes. I looked up to see myself staring at the door of the Civic. What the fuck? I pressed the unlock button on my Mercedes' keys again, hearing the doors to the Civic unlock. What was going on? I looked around to see my Mercedes parked across the lot, where the Ford was once parked. Who the fuck moved my car. I jogged over to it and hit the unlock button; however, my Mercedes remained locked. Instead I could hear the Honda behind me unlock once more. "Haven't you figured it out?"
I shot around to come face to face with the young smiling man who checked me in. "That's your car now." he said with his ridiculous smile.
"What the fuck are you talking about? This is my car. What did you do?" I asked.
"Nothing, sir." he said smiling, swinging my Mercedes' keys on his finger. How the hell did he get them? I looked down to see a set of keys in my hands, but not the ones I just had. They were definitely the keys to a Honda. I looked up to see he was a few steps back now, still swinging my keys.
"Give those back, you asshole! I'm calling the police!"
He looked at me and his smile began to widen. It grew and grew, far surpassing anything his face could possibly make, becoming something hideous, almost cartoon-like. As I stared inside the monstrous gap his smile had created, all I could see was blackness. I stumbled back; this was no man. He took a step towards me and I began quickly shuffling back. Another step, arching his neck. I began to sprint, hearing him walk behind me. Looking back, I could see him walking towards me, but his steps were impossibly huge, almost cartoony, as if his legs were expanding with each. I turned my head to face in front of me again and smacked right into him, falling back on my ass as I stared up into that endless abyss formed where a mouth once was. His neck began to grow, longer and longer and I closed my eyes tight, fearing whatever end I would surely meet.
When I opened them I was on the floor of the office building. I shot up and spun around, seeing the old man and the young boy standing behind the desk. I backed up, choking out "What the fuck are you doing to m--" I cut myself short however because that's when I saw something rather difficult to explain. I suppose it'd be hard to imagine, but as I spoke... I could literally see the letters of whatever word I was saying float from my mouth. The words floated away from me, spinning randomly about the room. I looked on in disbelief.
"What's a matter? Don't like the decor?" The old man asked, his words spinning around me, the "R" of the last word jumping from my nose.
I didn't want to speak; I didn't want anything else in the room. Instead I took a step back towards the door. "Leaving so soon?" the young boy asked—his letters expanding, becoming massive—the words halting behind me, becoming solid and blocking the door -- "What's wrong... Frank?"—my name slithering out like a snake and soon circling me, over and over and over. He took a step forward, and yet another thing I cannot very well describe happened: as I looked at him, I could clearly see the face of the young boy, but I could also see the face of the old man. Both were present at exactly the same time, yet neither were overlapping each other. I fell back and began to cry, having nothing else to do. "Do you believe in reality, Frank?" the words of the creature—as I am certain it was not human—falling around me, 'reality' looking as if it were chipped rock while the rest was black as night. It bent over me, staring down on me with its two sets of eyes at once. I cannot properly portray my fear at this moment. "Do you know why you're here, Frank?" it asked.
"No...," I squeaked out, my letters falling on the floor and soon spreading like water.
"Because I asked you to come," it said, now in my father's voice. It sounded very far away, just like in the phone call. "Because I like you." Now it was using my voice. Suddenly, the creature opened it's mouth and a cacophony of different voices began to spring out. Words just pouring into the air, I could hear everything. Every conversation I'd had the past few days, everything I'd said or that had been said to me. I began to feel myself being crushed beneath all the letters. "NICE MERCEDES YOU GOT THERE!" "I'M TRYING TO SLEEP" I couldn't bear it. I began to drown in the letters, my breath leaving my body. Was I about to die? I squeezed my eyes shut.
I opened them only when everything fell silent. I was sitting in my Mercedes on the side of the road. I looked around, no hotel in sight, nothing in sight. I fumbled around for my phone, seeing the time was 1:28 a.m. Was it all a dream? Where was I? Checking my GPS, I found myself to be about a mile and a half north of Black Rock. Why did I end up here? If it was a dream, what was I up here for? Suddenly, my phone vibrated. I checked it, one text.
"NICE REALITY YOU GOT THERE."
I never saw the Everett Motel again; in fact, no one in Black Rock claimed to know of its existence. I don't really know what to think or what to say. I tried calling the number that had text me but it comes up as nonexistent each time. I tried searching exactly where the motel had been but never even found a trace. Still, I know what I saw. I don't understand it, and maybe I don't believe it was even in our reality, but I know. So I sit here questioning it all, not knowing when it will return or what reality I will find myself in. So far it hasn't ever left our own since that night, but who knows when it will? I'm sure whenever it does, it will be waiting. So I sit here, waiting for death, and hoping death comes in this reality.
Written by Icarus88