The waiting room seats were uncomfortable. You’ve been trying to find a comfortable position for the past hour and a half. You have been waiting for almost two hours now and you were getting antsy. You’ve done a turn around the room twice already. You know its features by now.
The room was stuffy and faintly smelled of smoke. Some of the blue wallpaper was peeling and there was a water stain just to the right of the wall clock, whose ticking was starting to drive you insane. It was the only sound in the room, aside from the squeaks and creaks from the chair every time you moved. The cracks on the leather were digging on your skin.
You were debating on just laying down the row of chairs when the light above the door labeled ‘EXIT’ turned red, the lock on the door clicked open and a voice called out in a robotic monotone manner “Next please.” When you enter the next room, the door clicks lock behind you.
This room is painted a dull yellow and it had air conditioning. You are especially grateful for that fact. The chairs were much more comfortable too.
The room was mostly bare with only five chairs, a water dispenser situated in a corner and the stool beside it where a five glasses were stacked high on it. There was no clock to tell the time but by the time the robotic monotone voice calls for you to move to the next room again, you have already taken a short nap, inspected every corner of the room, and drank three full glasses of water.
The next room had a buffet. An assortment of fruits meats and different kinds or desserts was artfully arranged on top of a red table which stood in stark contrast to the white walls and floor. In fact all the furniture was red, even the frame of the painting of tulips hanging on the wall.
You were the only one there though. You’ve began to notice that.
You avoid the food at first, not sure if you’re even allowed to eat it. But after a few minutes, you give in. No one was watching you anyway, you were alone in the room. You sample the fruits first, and then alternate between the meats and desserts. You only take little pieces at first, then walk around the room, just going in circles, to pass the time. You aren’t as bored now with all the food to munch to keeping you at least with something to do until you’re called again. Still, it wasn’t until you’ve finished at least about half the food on the table when the voice alerts you that you now had to leave that room.
Green, The next room was filled with green. The walls were painted green, the chairs were a different shade of green, the wall clock was green, and aside from that, almost any place where you could put a plant, there would be one.
Long leafed potted plants were situated beside the green waiting room chairs, succulents lined the cupboards, and a beautiful flower arrangement, which was the only thing that wasn’t green, was placed at the center of the coffee table.
You look around at first, belly still full, and while checking the time, discover that 6 hours have passed since when you first got here. That means you’ve been waiting for six hours already, and all you did was go from waiting room to waiting room, never meeting anybody yet.
And so, with no other choice but to wait for the voice again and for the exit door to this room to open, you wait and wait and wait and wait. You start feeling sleepy, and slowly and slowly, without your bidding, your eyes fall shut.
You are startled awake by the door sliding open and the monotone voice says its usual line of “Next please.”
Just as you step foot in the room, the power goes off. Just you luck. Everything was just deathly silent. You feel around the place and hope to at least find the chairs. You do find them, fortunately, but you only noticed they were there was because you bumped on them, which was unfortunate. With how much your knee was hurting, it would definitely bruise.
You sit in darkness.
Trying to distract yourself from the fact that you are sitting alone by yourself in a dark room, you start singing the first song you could think of,
Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky
It was at this moment that you look up and see the stars. There were stars painted on the ceiling, they were glowing.
You just sit there, mesmerized, the children’s song playing in loops in your head. You are no longer scared, that is until the lights turn back on.
You are blinded by the sudden flooding of brightness in the room. You almost jump out of your skin as your eyes land on your reflection across the room. There was a ceiling to floor length mirror on the other side of the room. Meanwhile, the voice announces that they are sorry for the inconvenience and that the problem has been already been fixed.
You wait for what it feels like another half hour before the voice instructs you to proceed to the next room.
This room was bare. Except for its beautiful white wallpaper with gold leaf accents, it was completely bare. There were no chairs, no clocks, no tables, no plants, nothing.
Dumbfounded and confused as to what to do, you just stand there for a minute but then decide to just sit at the corner and wait, again.
And so you wait, and wait, and wait, and wait.
You’ve begun to inspect the wallpaper. With what you’ve noticed from passed experiences, you spend about two hours on every room.
And so you wait again.
You wait, and wait, and wait, and wait.
You’ve seen all you could of the wallpaper. There was nothing more to inspect.
You wait some more.
You wait, and wait, and wait, and wait and begin to wonder if you’ve spent more than two hours here as the waiting seems to be going much, much longer than expected.
You wait again.
You’ve migrated to lying down on the center of the room when the double doors burst open. You immediately sit up, and that’s when you see the line of people. It went on and on and on, with no end in sight.
You go up to stand in line. There were metal railings on both sides and a turnstile every few feet to ensure that the people waiting kept their distance.
And so you wait, and wait some more. You wait until your feet start hurting. You wait until you don’t know reason anymore.
Finally, it was your turn. You go up and stand in front of a –mirror? Was this what all this was about? All this waiting and it was just to see your own reflection?
You look into the mirror and your blood runs cold as a black wispy figure curls behind you, its eyes faintly glowing, and its mouth in a Cheshire grin. It raises a wispy finger and loudly declares, in a voice made up of your worst nightmares, “Death!”
You feel the ground give out underneath you and you fall into nothingness, the echo of your screams swallowed up by the earth.