The Dead Mistress

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

Spending a night at The Stanley Hotel, two college friends are sent on a bone chilling adventure.

Submitted: November 06, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: November 06, 2017




A cool breeze blew through the air of the concert hall. The wind flew through the open doors, causing the air to become even more freezing. Dead leaves that were laying on the ground  tumbled inside, making a terrible scratching sound against the floor. Taking a deep breath, Melanie softly touched the keys and began to play the death tune.

The wind picked up, as if excited to hear her crappy piano playing skills. As Melanie continued to play the tune, her fingers almost took over. They moved across the freezing tiles as if they’d done it a million times before. The more confident she felt, the more she noticed the presence of somebody inside. Breezes passed all around her, causing her to loose focus.

That’s when she realized her plan worked. But, too well.


(. .)


Melanie sat trembling in her bed, too scared to make a movement. Joanna had just went downstairs to buy some snacks from the vending machine, but she might as well have gone across the country. Sitting in the bed by herself, she never felt so alone, but, at the same time, the room felt crowded. It was as though a presence had entered through the door as Jo left.

The fact that Bennett Scarlet and Bob Andrews both were brutally murdered in the woods behind the hotel the day before didn’t calm her down. Neither did the fact that the hotel had a history of killing young men and married couples ever since it was established.

 It’s all ok, she thought. Nothing’s going to happen.

 Just because she was staying at the most haunted hotel of all times, where about a gazillion guests a year saw the  famous apparitions, didn’t mean one would show up in her room.

Okay, when she started thinking like that, things seemed impossibly desperate. Coming to the hotel had all been Jo’s idea. She guessed her idea for a fun Friday night was sleeping in a hotel where terrifying sights waited for you at each turn. Not exactly Melanie’s idea, but she agreed. Joanna was the best friend she’d ever had. Melanie wanted to show her how thankful she was by doing some crazy ideas that popped into her friend’s mind.

I need to distract myself, she thought. What did I bring with me?

The college student rummaged through her bag, hoping to find the book she’d brought with her. At last, she pulled out the beat up paperback.

In glossy letters, the front of the page read How to Kill a Mockingbird. The letters shined in the light of her night stand lamp. Sure, Melanie had read the book like three times before, but still, if it could distract her from the situation she was stuck in, then she’d read it fifty more times.


“Oh Sh**!” Melanie cussed, dropping her book. What was that? Her heart started racing out of her chest. If the ghosts didn’t kill her, the heart attack the sound gave her sure would.

Woah girl, she mumbled, trying to calm herself down. Just relax. Someone outside probably dropped something. After all, that his where the sound ca-




Melanie fought back another cuss word. Something was outside her door. The fear in her body caused Melanie’s body to freeze in place. Jo had taken a room key with her, so there was no way it could be her. Then who was it?

Or what was it?

Swallowing back more cusses and screams, she silently crept out of bed, toward the door. About half way across the floor, she grabbed the lamp from the dark wood desk and brought it with her. Sure, if it was a spirit, the lamp would probably fly right through it, but it may give her a chance to run away screaming bloody murder.

And if it was a person. Well, that’d suck for them.




Whoever it was, Melanie decided this thing was very impatient.  That’s when she realized a thick, grayish goo that was oozing into her room. Was it ghost’s blood? Did ghosts in have blood? Being careful not to step in it, she hobbled closer to the door.

She reached the entrance to her room and grasped both the cold, metal handle and the turquoise, surprisingly heavy, lamp. Taking a deep breath, she swung the door open.


When seeing a maid who spilled some cleaning supplies, your first reaction isn’t usually Kill her! However, Melanie only saw a figure in white, so she swung her makeshift weapon of a light fixture right at the little hispanic women.


Okay, thought Melanie, a bit relieved, at least I know it’s a person.

What didn’t relieve her was the sound of the maid’s yelp. And man, if you thought Melanie could cuss, you should hear the maid’s interesting vocabulary. She screeched every word in the book as she clutched her nose in one hand, and fanned herself in the other.

All the while, Melanie stood in the doorway too shocked to make a comment.

When the maid finally came back to normal (or at least Melanie thought), the maid looked up accusingly at her. When she spoke, her voice shocked Melanie. It didn’t match her appearance at all.

“Soon!” she hissed. “Don’t worry, the ladies are plotting your funeral right now. They say you’ll make it past the maze of leaves and the concert hall. But personally, I don’t think you’ll make it past the front desk!” She cackled, as if talking about Melanie’s death was amusing. “But,” she continued, her voice sounding like it was being rubbed against sandpaper and needles. “My patron only wants me to tell you your future. So, here it goes. I promised.”

Half of Melanie was hoping she’d drop whatever act she was playing and order to help clean up the soap on the floor. But, with her luck, it didn’t happen. The demon maid spewed out some different words than planned.


In the dark shadows, the mistress hides,

Becoming visible to human’s eyes,

In a maze of leaves, you shall find the lase

As well as the keeper in it’s case

In the tunnels, let the lace be your guide,

Let it lead you to the place where they hide


Then, along with her cleaning cart, the beast vanished, luckily taking the soapy mess with her. After hearing that, Melanie wasn’t in the mood to clean up a spill. Her mind drifted to the weird prophecy sounding thing the monster had told her.

Who was the mistress? She didn’t really sound very sweet.

Maze of leaves? What the heck could that mean? A forest?

And the keeper? As well as the mistress, they didn’t sound like the kind of person you wanted to run into on the streets. Or in a maze of leaves.

Before any more terrifying thoughts flew into her head, Joanna turned the corner of the hotel and casually walked toward the door. Her short, dirty blond hair. Her intense green eyes met melanie. The way she looked as she walked made Melanie jealous. From her viewpoint, there was no fear in her eyes.


“What’re you doing out here, Mel?” she asked.

“Oh, I, uh. I was just waiting for you,” she mumbled. It sounded less creepy in her head.  “Um, did you get the snacks?”

Jo pulled out bags and bags of chips, candy, and pretty much any type of movie snack you could imagine. But, after getting attacked by a demon maid, Melanie lost her appetite. The only thing that sounded good to her was packing up everything and driving all the way back to her dorm in Fort Collins.

“Great!” Melanie said, with absolute fake enthusiasm.

“Yeah, but let’s get out of the hallway before the ghosts get us,” my friend joked. She might’ve found that funny, but Melanie didn’t.

They walked into the room, but Melanie’s nerves didn’t settle. She couldn’t shake the feeling that something else was in their room. Actually, she felt like there were hoards of people in their room. Maybe all the ghosts in this dumb hotel figured Jo and her were going to watch The Other Women and they were like Oh my gosh! I absolutely love that movie! Let’s crash their party and make Melanie want to die from fear! #girls night!

 “You okay?” Jo asked. “Your face is whiter than a ghost.”

Would she just quit it with the ghost jokes?

 “I-I’m fine,” she said. “Just a little creeped out.”

“Oh, c’mon!” Jo said, acting angry. “Would I do anything that would be dangerous to you? Sure people have seen ghosts, and they lived to tell people about it! I’d never do anything that could be harmful or unenjoyable to you!”

As much as Melanie wanted to agree with her, she knew the truth. There had been many cases in which they (not they, Jo) decided to do some crazy things. Cough, paramotoring (Melanie crashed into a tree), Cough, Iceland (she got black sand in her eyes and couldn’t see clear for a day), Cough, An overnight at Grand Lake (she fell out of her canoe and into the freezing mountain water).

 Okay, so maybe the fact that Melanie was a total clutz was part of the reason some of those things happened. But still, picking twigs out of your hair from a paramotoring accident wasn’t fun. She looked like a cross between mother nature and the victim of a car accident. Which was ironic. She was not one with nature. Infact, this one time when she went hiking with Jo…

In all of the incidents, Melanie had been hurt in some way. She had a feeling that this time the results would not be as good as looking like Gaea for a day.

As the movie continued, Melanie started to let her guard down. It was almost a reminder that there was a safer, less scarier world than inside the Stanley. But of course, her luck didn’t last.

As Kate started looking for the other mistress, weird things began to happen. First, the lights flickered. After taking some deep breaths, Melanie didn’t suspect much. Lights flickered all the time. It probably meant nothing. Then, weird noises came from the floor. They sounded like someone breathing. But, the breathing was so loud, it was as if the earth itself could be responsible for the sounds of inhaling and exhaling. Even Jo admitted it was odd, but she didn’t look frightened or alarmed.

After a bit, Melanie decided to just sit back and enjoy the movie. As Jo would say, Who knows when you’re going to be here again? Make the most of it!

And Melanie tried. She did her best to just enjoy herself and relax. Which, as you can imagine, didn’t work out.


Her relaxation didn’t last long. The TV flickered, and all of the sudden, they were not watching The Other Women. Instead, a girl with long dark hair and glowing eyes stood on the screen, her eyes so bright you couldn’t make out any of her facial features. In a deep, yet somehow still girlish voice, the girl gave the warning.

My mistress awaits, she boomed. She’s under this hotel right now, watching your movements. I’m the remainder of what’s left of her. I have done my work without showing myself to humans. But, the closer she gets to rising, the weaker my essence is. I can’t stay invisible forever, but I can still kill you!

With that, the TV returned to our movie. Joanna and Melanie were already terrified. They screeched their heads off, jumping out of the bed and running around the room. By the time they stopped, a breeze of cold and musty air swept through the room.

Blurs of white appeared around the room, twirling around them so quickly it looked like a giant cyclone of white. The circle got tighter and tighter, closing Jo and Melanie in. As the spirits whisked by, Melanie could make out some of the faces of the spirits. All of them had long, flowy black hair that flew behind them in the wind of the cyclone. Their eyes were black and hollow, and their mouths opened wide, as if they were ready to swallow them whole.

And the sounds?

The apparitions made a sound as if they were being tortured. They wailed and screeched with agony so loud that the only other sound she could hear was Kate from the movie saying the word mistress.

Shut up, Kate.

Just when all hope was lost, the door flew open and in walked an employe. As fast as the ghosts came, they vanished into the cold air.

“Sorry to bother you,” he mumbled. “But we heard screaming coming from down the hall. It’d be odd not to check it out.”

“Oh,” Jo said, her face paler than the spirits. “We- uh- saw a spider.”

“A spider,” he repeated, as if he wasn’t buying it. Melanie didn’t blame him. Personally, she loved spiders. And all animals. If anything, she’d be screaming with joy. “I don’t see a spider.”

“Oh, we, uh, killed it, though,” Jo lied. As terrified Melanie was, she couldn’t help but to get annoyed. Melanie would never kill an animal. Seeing one being hurt or killed purposely would be her absolute worst nightmare. There was the other fear of course, but she wouldn’t mention it.

Never would she mention it.

Animal abuse is your worst fear, a voice in her said. Good to know.

Just when the employee was closing the door, he stopped. He began to choke, doubling over and gagging a terrible gag. It started to sound feminine, as if his soul was swapping out from someone else’s. When he looked up again, his eyes were glowing a pure white.

“Your time is running out,” warned the voice. “I await you in the earth, just past the tunnels of damnation. Come, find me. I want to feast on your flesh. For years I have watched you from the shadows, coming so close to swallowing you. But now, I’m taking on my physical form. I will rip you apart with my own hands. You’d better start your journey now, before it’s too late.”

With that, he vanished into the shadows.

“Sh**!” Melanie yelled in alarm.

Before the rest of Melanie’s vocabulary could slide out of her mouth, the cyclone of spirits continued to roar toward them. They slid out of their door and sprinted down the hallway, tears filling up Melanie’s eyes. She began to slow down, but Jo grabbed her wrist and pulled her along the old, red carpet.

They swerved around the corner, entering another corridor just to be stopped by a man.

His bangs covered his eyes, but the knife in his hand and the evil grin on his face told Melanie the knife wasn’t for cutting fruit.

They whirled around and continued down the hallway but were stopped again. In Front of them, the  silhouette of two girls began to fill. Their reddish colored hair and baby blue dresses made them look like innocent little girls. But, when they ordered Jo and her to Come, play with us, they sprinted the same way they came from.

Literally sobbing in terror, they sprinted through corridors. However, the hallways seemed to become a maze of confusing corridors, all leading the opposite place that they wanted. At last, they spotted the old wooden elevators, their only chance to escape the third floor. About five feet away, a little girl appeared in front of them and began to scream. Her eyeballs fell out of her socket and spiders began climbing out of where her eyes should’ve been.

Jo and Melanie threw themselves into the elevator car and collapsed. Pure terror remained in their bones, causing them to break down. At last, they collected themselves.

“W-what now?” Joanna asked.

“Well, that weird poem thing the demon maid said mentioned a maze of leaves,” Melanie said.

“Wait, what?” Jo asked. “Like the one in The Shining?”

Melanie had never seen The Shining, but she had heard enough to know about the Twins. The fact that she just saw them probably meant the maze was similar. “I guess. We should go.”

The elevator doors rolled open, and Melanie half expected to see a spirit of yet another girl gazing at her. But, the lobby of The Stanley Hotel was completely vacant.

Completely Vacant.

The duo crept along the old, wooden floor, heading for the back door. Their hearts began to beat out of control the closer they got. Melanie could swear she saw spirits whisping through the air in the corner of her eye, trying to make her insane. So far, it was working. At last, they swung the beat up door open.

The cold, mountain air hit them like a wall. Immediately the two girls shivered uncontrollably. It had to be under twenty degrees. After they got over the cold, they realized they were surrounded by thick, green brush, making walls that were impossible to see over.

The maze of leaves.

They began to creep through the forest of pathways and overgrown plants. Both began to think that other than them, the maze was empty. As you could imagine, they were wrong. The made a right turn and there standing before them, was Melanie’s complete and utter worst fear. It’s white makeup shined in the midnight light. It’s eyes sneered viciously down on them, hungry for blood. In his arms laid the corpse of a dead cow. How the terrifying clown could carry a dead cow so easily, they didn’t know.

Melanie was too terrified to move. Seeing the two of her worst fears combined made her paralyzed in fear. If it weren’t for Jo pulling her away, the clown would’ve swallowed her whole. Jo lead the way as Melanie sobbed in despair. They rounded another corner and ran smack dab into a clown slaughtering a dead chicken.

“See Jo!” Melanie screamed, as they sprinted away in horror. “This is why I became vegetarian!”

As Melanie continued to cry in terror, they ran into the what seemed to be the middle of the maze. Dead animal corpses littered the ground around them, making Melanie want to fall to the ground in despair. In the center of the circle stood the most terrorizing mime in history. Blood covered his face, making it look like a failed attempt to apply makeup. His dark, hollow eyes were hard to meet.

“Haha,” the mime boomed, grinning evilly. His voice was dark and threatening, nothing like how his appearance would make you assume. As he began to speak, the clowns entered the center, blocking all the possible escape routes.

“Let me guess,” Jo commented, pure anger in her eyes. “You work for the mistress?”

“Observant,” commented the mime. “Unfortunately, the mistress has never treated me well. It’s probably because how she has this thing against men ever since her husband cheated on her and killed her. I honestly only abide by her rules because she was the one who created all of us,” he gestured to the clowns. “We’re made purely out of your fear. That’s the thing with the mistress, she can make you see the things you don’t want to see.”

“What do you want from us?” Melanie squeaked, her confidence fading. After hearing the mime talk, a plan was forming in her head.

“Well, I would like to eat you for dinner. But, if you couldn’t tell, I seem to be stuck in, um, this case.” The mime tried to walk forward, but was stopped by an invisible force. “My mistress informed me that if my clowns kill the two people in this maze(that would be you), then I’d get free from my cage.”

The keeper in it’s case!

As if on cue, the clowns dropped the animal carcuses and began to close in on Joanna and Melanie. Melanie took a deep breath and put her plan into action. These clowns were made of fear. If Melanie didn’t have fear, then the clowns wouldn't exist. She tried and tried to tell herself the clowns wouldn't scare her. But, what finally got her was telling herself that the clowns didn’t exist. She peeked open her eyes to see nothing but a small piece of white lace sitting on the rough, frozen ground.

In a maze of leaves you shall find the lace.

 I grabbed it and shoved it in my pocket.

“H-how did you do that?” Jo asked, a look of shock painted on her face.”Never mind, we don’t have time for that. Let’s go!”

As they plunged into the maze, Melanie couldn’t help to notice the lace was guiding her. Whenever they came to a crossroad, the direction that they needed to go popped into her mind and she veered the direction needed. Pretty soon, they were out of the maze and standing before their next obstacle.

The concert hall had always been in the back of her head. Just the name of it sent shivers down her spine. But, when she got there, it seemed less grand. Maybe it was the fact that Melanie had just banished hoards of clowns, but their situation didn’t seem that hopeless.

They pulled the old, wooden doors open and in front of them wasn’t what any of them expected. Foldable chairs sat in messy row, as if the person who had been in charge of setting up the chairs didn’t give a crap about what it looked like. At the front was a small stage with an old yet grand looking piano.

Though Melanie doubted she had an answer, she asked Jo what next. Surprisingly, she had a guess.

“I’ve heard stories that if you play the piano, it sometimes attracts the spirits,” Jo answered. “Maybe we can attract the mistress. From there, I guess we fight her?”

Melanie had no clue how you fought a ghost, but she decided not to think about. Slowly, she made her way toward the piano. A cool breeze blew through the air of the concert hall. The wind flew through the open doors, causing the air to become even more freezing. Dead leaves that were laying on the ground  tumbled inside, making a terrible scratching sound against the floor. Taking a deep breath, Melanie softly touched the keys and began to play the death tune.

The wind picked up, as if excited to hear her crappy piano playing skills. As Melanie continued to play the tune, her fingers almost took over. They moved across the freezing tiles as if they’d done it a million times before. The more confident she felt, the more she noticed the presence of somebody inside. Breezes passed all around her, causing her to lose focus.

That’s when she realized her plan worked. But, too well.

She had attracted not one spirit, but at least twenty ghosts. Luckily, they didn’t seem interested in harming her, but just hearing her play. When the song was completed, Melanie felt the largest presence of them all behind her. She slowly turned her head around to see the pale image of a kind woman looking over at her. Somehow, Jo and Mel both understood who it was.

“The mistress,” they both said in disbelief.

“I’m only a vision,” oddly enough, the voice was nothing like the terrifying one they had seen earlier. In fact, it sounded kind. A trap door flew open and the women continued. “Find me in the tunnels. We have much to talk about. But beware, the corridors you’re about to enter are full of your worst nightmares.”

With that, she vanished.

There were so many questions in their heads. Why was the mistress being so nice? What did they have to talk about? But, they could only climb down the creaky stairs into the tunnels of horror.


They couldn’t describe the terrors they came across. If you were to enter that tunnel, you’d be confronted by every single one of your fears, pretty much pushing you to the edge of insanity. Who knows, maybe Jo and Mel saw different things, maybe they didn’t. But, it’s safe to say when the arrived at the doors of the mistress’ residence, they were shell shocked. Right before Melanie raised her hand to knock, the door swung open. There in front of them stood the mistress.


Imagine getting sent on this long and painful journey all to find out that you were wrong all along. The mistress explained to them. “I’m afraid you’ve been tricked. All my maids had gone missing and weren’t answering my calls to them. At last, I hunted down one of them and they told me the truth. Tanner was sending visions to you guys from “me”. He made them you think I wanted you dead.”

“Tanner?” Jo asked, starting to smile. “That’s the name of my ex. Makes sense he’d do something like that.”

Melanie held back a laugh. If what the mime had told them was true, even mentioning a guy was a bad idea. However, that was probably another lie, because the mistress laughed. “But in all seriousness, who’s Tanner?”

“You’ve already met him. Tanner the mime.”

“But why would he do that to you?” Jo asked.

“Well, Tanner was honest about one thing he told you: I had a tragic love life. I fell in love, but then was cheated on and killed. That was back in 1954. All while I thought I was happy with my man, Tanner flirted with me, and crossed the line when he tried to kiss me.. When I became a ghost, I turned him as well as all his family into clowns, to expose who they were. And, to make sure he caused no trouble, I put him in a case for eternity. Harsh? Yes, but I’ll bet he was going to overthrow me. He saw you as a threat and tried to kill you while he could.”

There was a moment of silence before anyone spoke.

“Wait, two things that’re unanswered. Why would he murder all young couples and young men in the hotel? And also, why did that demon maid say In the shadows, the mistress hides, coming visible to human’s eyes?”

“As for the first question, and I can’t answer with total confidence, he felt bitter toward those who found love. As for the second, I’m afraid that line is true. The older I get, the weaker I become. I can no longer keep Tanner in his case. When he breaks free, my curse will lift. He will be human. Plus, it’s only a matter of time before I can be seen by humans. That’s why I’m down here, hiding from the mortals. But enough, girls. I’m afraid it’s time you confront your ex- um, I mean Tanner.”

The world began to spin around the two girls and suddenly, they were standing in an all too familiar place. The ground was littered with animal corpse’s. Right next to her though, sat an item that gave her hope.

“Well girls,” the clown king greeted them, acting confident. However, Melanie could see fear in his eyes, “you have figured me out. And, I’m afraid you’ve walked right into my trap.”

Quickly, Melanie formed a plan into her head. It was stupid, insane, and most likely would get her killed.

She stuck to it. She grabbed the item that the mistress had given her and charged at Tanner. The closer she got to the monstrosity, the angrier she got. The more angry she got, Tanner seemed to shift into all the people who Melanie wanted revenge with. With all her might, she launched herself at Tanner and in two seconds, her makeshift weapon of a lamp that had protected her earlier, was at the Clown King’s Throat.

After taking a few breaths, Melanie mumbled the words she wanted to scream at all the terrors they’d seen tonight.

“Go away.”

“Wait, do you really want to kill me?”

Melanie gave him an answer.


© Copyright 2018 Frank Simms. All rights reserved.

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