Chapter 5 – Insomnia
Landon walked through the door of his house, happy to be home. He put down his suitcase, took off his jacket and threw it on the couch. He could hear birds singing through an open window. He felt relaxed just standing there and listening.
‘Honey, I’m home!’ he yelled smiling.
There was no answer. He figured she was probably upstairs. He gently walked up the stairs, careful not to make any noise. When he got upstairs he looked around and saw light coming from beneath the bathroom door. He smiled and went toward the door. Gently turning the knob, he opened it. Candles filled the bathroom with a dim, relaxing light and steam was coming out of the bath tub, which was filled with hot water.
‘Landon! You’re home early!’ said Chloe from the bath tub.
‘Hey, want some company?’ asked Landon while taking off his clothes.
Chloe smiled and arched her index finger twice, calling him. He gently got in the tub with Chloe and laid his head back, tired from a hard day’s work at the office.
‘Another one of those days, huh?’ asked Chloe as she took his hand into her own, comforting him.
‘Yeah, all that paperwork drives me crazy. I wish I had a more exciting job.’
‘Come on, lighten up. What can I do to make you feel better?’
‘Being here with you already makes me feel better,’ said Landon smiling.
They both leaned toward each other and kissed. As Landon closed his eyes, he felt as happy as he had ever been. He wished this moment would last forever. He wished this kiss would last forever. As he opened his eyes, he found himself in an old, dirty bathroom. The candles were unusually bright and an unearthly stench filled the room. It smelled like death. The bathroom looked as if it was taken right out of a horror movie, which made Landon feel uneasy. Chloe’s hands around his neck felt strangely unfamiliar. When he turned his head to look at her, he realized he was holding a decaying corpse in a bath tub filled with blood.
Three loud bangs made Landon jump out of bed as if thrown out of it. The hotel room still smelled awful, despite both the windows being open. He had managed to convince Chloe to let him stay in the room for the night. For some reason, he felt it was the only way they could get an insight on what had happened at the hotel. Although skeptical, Chloe finally agreed to let him stay ‘one night and one night only’. Landon heard three loud bangs on the door.
‘Agent Miles, are you there?’
It was Mr. Morrison. Landon opened the door and invited him in.
‘No, thank you, I won’t stay long. I just wanted to check and see if you were alright.’
‘Well, as you can see, I’m okay, thanks for checking.’
‘Good, good. Did the janitor manage to wipe out the… – he hesitated, trying not to say blood out loud – stain?
‘Yes, he did a great job with the room, thank you.’
‘Good. Alright then, I guess I’ll head home for the night. I hope you’ll manage to get some sleep. Good night, agent Miles, God be with you,’ said the owner giving Landon an odd look.
‘Okay, good night!’
‘Yeah, God. May He be with me,’ thought Landon to himself, sarcastically. He had stopped believing in God a long time ago. In his line of work, it was hard to keep your faith intact while witnessing horrors you never thought possible.
It was 06:19 PM. Landon sat down on the bed and sighed. He thought of the nightmare. ‘Jesus Christ, what was that?! I’m already starting to hate this room.’
All he had to do now was wait.