The Haunted Hotel Room

The Haunted Hotel Room

A True Horror Story

In my youth, I’ve been so adventurous (or foolish?) enough to accompany an older friend to a wild goose chase that turned into one of the scary experiences of my life. This story is about an adventure that turned scary within 24 hours and that taught me life is a precious gift from God. No one, not even you, has the right to end your own life. Oh no, it was not me who attempted to commit a suicide but I witnessed a weird scene that could only be described as a prelude to death.

Here’s the start of this true-to-life horror story. Enjoy getting scared!

hotel by the sea

Have you seen the face of Death? I had – twice. The first time was when I was still young and fearless (or foolish haha). The second time was right after I gave birth to my youngest daughter but this is another tale to tell.

This story is about an adventure that turned scary within 24 hours. More than two decades ago, I accepted a friend’s invitation to go to a very far province to see her boyfriend. The guy was a classmate and younger than my friend so I had this idea of giving some piece of advice to both of them. With hindsight, I was thankful for having that genuine but misguided desire to help because if I acted like a free rider that I really was, a life would have been lost forever.

It was a 15-hour of silent journey by bus. My friend was very quiet and I was sleepy. My bottom felt flat and numb from sitting for so long. My legs were stiff but my mind was buzzing as we walked out of the bus terminal. I loved going to different places. My eyes would dart like butterflies everywhere, trying to savor the feel and the texture of the ambiance.

I never imagined that this event would be one of the many weird experiences of mine.

We checked in the only reputable hotel in the area. It was a famous tourist spot but due to a major political upheaval that time, the large hotel lost its glory and became a very quiet and almost empty place.

The first omen was one of the big jars that dotted the wide pathway towards the central building. One particular jar was not in its proper position. It was standing near the center. It was immovable when the porter tried to push, like it was glued on the concrete floor or had a heavy content inside. As we started walking, I heard a low keening sound coming from a deep place. I didn’t dare glance back at the 5-feet tall and 3-feet wide decorative jar.

“It’s only the wind.” The porter muttered but he seemed suddenly in a hurry to move away.

The second omen glared at me when we went to our hotel room. Each door that lined the endless corridor had a lighted bulb, except the one above our door. The bellboy promised to replace the busted bulb the next day after I commented on it.

I still had a thing with a bath tub then so my trepidation disappeared after seeing the bathroom was complete with a tub and shower. My friend opened the sliding glass door connected to a terrace with a few steps on the grey-black sands of the nearby beach. I was about to spread my aching body on one of the twin beds when she shouted hoarsely.

“What is it?” was my anxious question after joining her on the terrace.

“My boyfriend! There’s my boyfriend! He came to see me!” She didn’t even glance at me. Her tearful eyes were staring at the sea.

“There’s no one out there.” It was a windy afternoon. The horizon was hazy because the sea was foaming due to its furiously pounding waves.

“No! He’s there! He’s waving at me!” My friend sounded hysterical as she waved her arms frantically.

the haunted hotel roomI was aghast and horrified when she started running on the wet sand. My eyes still couldn’t see anyone on the beach!

“Hey! Stop! Let’s get inside. It’s raining,” I pleaded as my cold fingers grabbed at her arm desperately. With my free hand, I delivered a very light slap on her cheek.

My friend instantly stopped all movement like a switched-off machine.

“There’s no one out there,” I said gently.

“B-but…” Her eyes strayed towards the long spread of sands once again. “He’s gone…”

“You have his home number. Let’s go back inside and use the hotel phone. Okay?”

“O-okay…” My friend let me guide her but her head kept on turning towards the empty beach.

By the way, the imaginary man by the sea was the third omen.

Why was I counting omens after all these years? While recounting this story, I finally realized that my friend had really been deeply depressed. Maybe, her negative state of mind had been a magnet to something dark. I never expected her to turn suicidal because she was older and more experienced in life. She was pretty, smart, and well-off.

That kind of thinking was wrong and the only excuse was my young age.

Returning back to the story, that long afternoon was punctuated by emotional and stilted telephone conversations of my friend to her boyfriend’s various family members. The whole clan was clearly and loudly against the relationship between my friend and my classmate.

And I was just there sitting on the bed while watching and listening to her crying and pleading for just a word from her boyfriend. Strangely, I also felt detached. I should be crying along to share with my friend’s grief but my eyes remained dry. Maybe I was disillusioned after discovering the whole truth about the two people that I thought I knew.

My friend was a thirty-two year old divorcee with 2 daughters. My classmate was only twenty and still in college. I was definitely disturbed with these facts. I thought their thing was just a regular May-December affair between two single individuals with no baggage involved…

The guy’s parents went on panic mode when they heard about the girlfriend’s arrival in their town. After listening to my friend’s threats of taking her own life, it was no surprise when the family sent a pastor as their spokesperson and counselor rolled in one. He was also the fourth omen.

The pastor was very eloquent in his expression of the family’s point of view about the unusual (and maybe destructive) relationship. He stressed repeatedly about the bright future waiting for a young man.

He was also articulate in giving inspirational talk about love and God. Although it turned out later that I was the only one listening to him…

When my friend excused herself to go to the bathroom, the pastor resumed his spiel about religion since I was evidently a more interested listener. But thanks to my strange mood of detachment, I had been subconsciously counting the minutes. Maybe I had an unknown third eye or sixth sense, but I was really grateful to whatever force that suddenly pushed me onto my feet and sprinted into the bathroom after knocking down the door.

Up to this day, I still refuse to think why my friend did not bother locking the door. I am just very thankful. Why? She used my long and sturdy nylon shoelace to tie around her neck and to hang herself from the shower curtain tube, that’s why! Unknown to me, she removed the lace and pushed my shoes under the bed.

In a split of a second, I saw myself languishing in jail as a murderess!

But even though I had the pastor as strong witness to my innocence, I would dread facing my friend’s parents. I wouldn’t know what words to say. Nothing on this earth could give comfort and help appease the grief in their hearts for the untimely death of their beloved daughter.

The scene inside the bathroom was like a scene in a horror film.

I wasn’t sure if it was a trick of the light or just a product of wild imagination. I doubt if it was hallucination due to lack of sleep or hunger. I slept in the bus and we ate some late lunch in the hotel’s deserted restaurant.

True or not, real or just a bad dream, the horrible scene that slammed in front of my eyes was forever imprinted in my mind. Even after so many years, I could still see my friend surrounded by darkness as though inside a cave.

There was reddish glow so I managed to see her pretty face distorted by pain. Her eyes were bulging and her tongue hanging down to her neck. A large figure wearing a dark cape was looming over her. Framed inside the black hood was a white skull instead of a face. A glinting object shaped like a new moon was hovering near her head.

It was Death preparing to take away my friend’s life!the haunted hotel room

I screamed.

Suddenly, the darkness was replaced by the glaring brightness of the overhead light. I quickly embraced my friend’s legs to lift her up while the pastor untied the lace from her neck. Together, we carried her outside the bathroom and gently laid her shaking body on the bed.

I forced myself to examine her face and was relieved to see that she looked almost normal again, aside from the red-rimmed eyes and the red welts around her neck. She resumed crying and pleading for her boyfriend.

The pastor was badly shaken so he relented. He called the guy’s parents and advised them to let the two lovers speak to one another.

I was shocked, too, and yet I still feel oddly disconnected. I felt a momentary pang of disappointment and resentment when I finally discovered about the shoelace. After an absent-minded apology from my friend, my impassive mind took over once again.

But maybe, it was just my own way of dealing with such a traumatic experience. I remembered having uncharitable thoughts about my friend but I kept them private. She needed support and I gave it freely, for the sake of our friendship.

Unfortunately for her, the boyfriend was not in the vicinity. His family had brought him to a faraway place days before and it was impossible to bring him back physically. I slept fitfully on one of the bed while they talked all through the night.

To make sure that my shoelace would remain safe, I tied them in so many knots repeatedly until the length was shortened.

We checked out in the wee hours of the morning. The pastor waited outside in his car and he brought us to the bus station. My friend was in a better mood so I surmised she and the boyfriend had a good talk through the telephone.

After a short chat about our destination, we both fell silent. We sat near the back, several seats apart from the rest of the other passengers.

So when the fare collector offered three tickets, instead of two, the fine hair on my nape stood up at once.

“We’re only two,” I said.

The collector glanced at the seat right behind us and frowned. He scratched his head then nodded.

“Okay. Two tickets for two ladies.”

My friend slept deeply while I remained awake. Once, when the bus stopped for gas refill, I dared a glance at the rear part of the bus. There was no one but when I turned away, my side vision caught a dark shape hulking in the shadowy seat next to us.

When we hailed a taxi, the driver looked behind us and asked: “How many are you?”

“Only two.” This time, I replied with a frown. Since we were surrounded by many people, I had enough courage to look around.

No one was standing right behind us but when my head turned back, my eye caught a shadowy shape near my friend. And yet, I saw nothing when I looked at her directly.

It was dawn and the skies still dark. She didn’t want to go home yet so I invited her to our house.

There was a big window on one side of the bedroom. The glass was old and scratched but still solid. For some reason, I found myself glancing at the windows frequently while we lounged on the bed and talked about her future plans. My guess about the reconciliation with boyfriend was accurate. Although I did not approve of their relationship anymore, I remained silent.

We dozed off for a while. When I opened my eyes, the sky was starting to lighten. The old glass windows framed the clouds that slowly passed by. I was staring with half-closed eyes when a familiar shape started to form on the glass — a looming shadow with a long stick that had a sharp object on the tip.

I opened my eyes wide to make sure I was looking Death on the face again. It was really there, as a reflection on the glass.

“Oh Lord, he’s following her!” I exclaimed to myself as I glanced fearfully at my sleeping friend.

Without thinking, I drew several signs of the cross around her with my two fingers as a childish attempt to protect.

My lips moved to say prayers silently. My eyes stared at the shape fiercely while my mind screamed ‘go away, she decided to continue living!’ repeatedly.

As the sun continued to rise, the clouds were turning whiter and the skies bluer. The windows were once again the scratched old glass.

A new day was officially born and, hopefully, a new lease in life for my friend.

It was midday when I accompanied her to get a taxi. My eyes were sharply observing the driver. When he didn’t even threw a glance behind us, the heavy feeling inside my chest was instantly gone.

“Goodbye, my friend. Always take good care of yourself. Good luck to both of you.” My tone was light but my intent to stay away was serious.

It was a mean decision. I had no business over other people’s choices in life but I could always ‘un-friend’ those who had given me the greatest fright of my life!

After we separated that day, I had been bombarded with domestic problems. I was forced to leave school. About a year had passed when I bumped into my former classmate. He was speaking with my former friend on the phone.

I asked if I could speak with her for a moment. Her refusal did not surprise me although a bit disappointing. I had been a witness when she was in the lowest point of her life. Of course, she wouldn’t want a reminder of her saddest moments when happiness was currently in her hands.

“Is she okay now?” I asked the boyfriend.

“Yes…” The tone was hesitant.

And after seeing the reluctance in his face, I guessed the girlfriend could still be using the same old tricks to keep him on his toes.

I just wished I shared with her the ‘omens’ to look out for. I also wished to tell her to avoid going back to the hotel where a guest had committed suicide in the very same room where we stayed on that fateful night, according to one talkative bellboy…

Several years have now passed. I never knew what happened to both old female friend and old classmate. I can search for them on Facebook but I don’t want to see part two of this horror story!

Lesson learned: “Don’t play games with death. He doesn’t like losing and won’t let go easily.”

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