Spooky Stories: The Hallway

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Based on real life events…

The man knew that the next 100 feet were going to feel like the longest walk of his life…

The hallway seemed to stretch right in front of him, making the walk towards the brightened door seem even longer. He had heard stories and he had prepared himself as much as he could, but he still couldn’t get rid of the acidic taste in his throat, and the feeling that his life, and those of everyone he knew, would change as he walked into the unknown.

One step… two steps…

He could feel his heart race. He clutched his bag like it was a life preserver in the middle of the Atlantic. He could now make out the people sitting quietly in the room. Another step… “it will be alright,” he thought, not sure if he fully believed his words. “This will all be over… soon…” Another step… each step felt like a mile. He half expected to find that the world was frozen in place. “Just remember,” he thought, “remember what they told you.”

The people in the room became clearer. “Breath in…” he had to remind himself. He caught a passing waft of odor that seemed to calm him; it seemed… familiar. His brain was trying to search for the smell as he continued down the hall, briefly distracting him from what was about to occur.

When he snapped back to the reality, he realized he could hear a soft murmur coming from those who were now seated in the room. That’s when he noticed there weren’t just two of them… there were more. His mind raced. “Not this… no… this wasn’t in the plan…” His heart raced and it felt as if it was going to leap from his body. The only thing that kept him from trying to escape from the dark hallway was the reminder that he had prepared himself as best he could.

Then it hit him: he had heard of this type of thing before. He remembered her… what was her name… telling him, boldly, that this could happen. “Be prepared for anything…” he remembered, the thoughts flooding back to him. He noticed that there were small cups containing some sort of liquid in front of each shape in the room. He tried to stay focused but…

There was that scent again… alluring… but… no… he couldn’t… “Keep focused,” he reminded himself, realizing that his life depended on it. “Stay focused… there will be time for that later… maybe…” He thought. He tried to think of what would come after this, how his life could… would?… be different.

Before he could finish the thought, he was now at the doorway, face to face with those in the room. His present… his future… this was it… this was the moment… one of them made a sudden movement and he noticed a hand quickly coming towards him…

Ten minutes later, he emerged. It happened… so fast. He remembered all of it, yet couldn’t 100% agree that it actually happened to him. “Did that happen?” he thought to himself. As he walked, the hallway that once seemed so long suddenly seemed so short. This was the other side of the rest of his life, he thought. His thoughts never seemed so clear. Did he actually feel himself smiling? Not fake smiling, but joyous smiling.

Before he could decide, he heard his name and suddenly could sense one of them behind him. His heart beat; his body froze; he thought it was over. As he turned, he could feel his body tense…

“Before you leave…” the person behind him said. “… we wanted to let you know that we think your qualifications are outstanding.” The man was looking directly into his eyes. “We wanted to schedule you for a second interview on Monday afternoon, can you make it?” The smile returned to the man’s face, and he answered with an emphatic “Yes.”

Once the follow-up interview had been finalized and one final handshake occurred, the Hiring Manager turned to leave but quickly turned back with one last question: “Oh, by the way, you might have smelled that we are having a pizza party here. I know it’s after lunch, but would you like to take home a slice?”

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