The Room at the End of the Hall

Photo by Thomas Wolf.

Photo by Thomas Wolf.

You followed your normal bedtime routine last night: teeth flossed and brushed; pets taken out for their evening walk; cellphone muted; 15 minutes of reading a pulpy mystery before you slipped into a dreamless sleep.

It came as a surprise to you, then, to wake up on a cold, hard, marble floor. A white wall stands behind you. There is no other direction to move other than forward.

The corridor is so quiet you can hear your heart thumping as you stand up and start walking.  You glance between the columns, but none of them reveal doors or windows.

About hallway down the corridor you realize there is a room at the end of the hall. A warm, yellow light spills out of it as you draw closer.


No answer.

You walk a little faster now, eager to see if you can find a phone or friendly face.

What do you discover in the room? Leave your answer in the comment section below!





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4 Responses to The Room at the End of the Hall

  1. Michael Mock

    The room is large and circular, with a domed roof rising high overhead. The golden light emanates from a long, eight-sided crystal which hangs just below the apex of the dome; the crystal appears to be rotating slowly. The marble walls are smooth and undecorated, but a slender sword hangs on the far wall.

    Turning your head, you see a book suspended from the wall on your left, while the wall to your right holds a wide metal disk with raised edges: almost certainly a shield.

    You realize then that the doorway has vanished behind you. The wall curves unbroken, completing its circle, and a length of dark cloth hangs down where the doorway used to be. Looking more closely, it becomes apparent that the cloth is in fact a hooded cloak.

    What do you do now?

    If you approach the sword, turn to page 33.
    If you approach the shield, turn to page 57.
    If you approach the book, turn to page 116.
    If you examine the cloak, turn to page 72.
    If you examine the glowing crystal, turn to page 43.

    • Is this a dream?

      You’re surprised you haven’t woken up yet, but decide to pick the most adventurous option while you’re still asleep.

      The sword is much heavier than you would have imagined something so slender to be. It takes two hands to lift it smoothly. No sooner is it in your possession than you hear a small, scuffling noise behind you as a light breeze brushes ayour face.

      You spin around wobbly. The room looks more or less the same as it did a few moments ago, but you can hear birds chattering in the distance faintly now. And why is there a field mouse scurrying over your bare feet?

      The walls begin to shiver. There isn’t much time.

      If you pick up the shield, turn to page 84.
      If the mouse bit you, turn to page 103.
      If you drop the sword, turn to page 88.
      If you try to reach the shield in time, turn to page 114.

      • Michael Mock

        Running with the sword is awkward (and didn’t your mother always warn you not to?) but the marble of the walls and floor is no longer smooth. Each new crack sounds like a gunshot, and the golden glow is growing painfully bright. You make it just in time to grab the shield and slide your arm through the straps. A chunk of marble the size of your fist bounces off the smooth metal surface and shatters against the floor. It didn’t fall; somebody threw it.

        Squinting against the light, you see a figure waving frantically from the center of the room. The walls are covered with layers of spiderweb cracks, the sound of breaking stone has grown to a stead roar, and the light is so bright that it’s starting to burn your skin.

        You barely have time to wonder who this and where they could have come from before the figure gestures towards the floor… and jumps… and disappears down into some sort of hole or well. You catch a glimpse of fluttering cloth, and realize that whoever this person is, they’ve collected the cloak and possibly the book as well.

        If you jump down the hole in the center of the floor, turn to page 12.
        If you look for another way out, turn to page 76.
        If you stand there gaping stupidly until the light immolates you and the falling marble buries your ashes, put the book down now.

  2. Michael Mock

    Oh, come on! Somebody choose a path and write the next bit! I want to know what we find…

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