Anna stepped out of her house. She is waiting for a friend who was supposed to pick her up. It is 10 p.m., and the neighborhood is all empty due to Christmas. It is exceptionally cold outside, but Roger asked her to wait for him near the main road. While waiting, she takes a quick glance towards the dark, locked and lonely house behind her. She had heard stories about it, but at that moment she could remember none. Nevertheless, she got a bad feeling about standing so close to that house.
She glanced behind her more than a few times. She could feel the hair on the back of her neck standing. She wanted to go away but couldn’t make herself walk away from there. It was like someone or something was pulling her towards the house. She felt like entering the house to explore it. She knew that Roger would be late. He was always late. She then thought, why not? May as well explore a little and make the queasy feeling go away.
With no second thought, she stepped in through the main gate. That voice which had been shouting moments ago had suddenly gone very far away. But the will to explore had grown stronger. So, with quicker and bigger steps, she advanced towards the door. Knocking would be an act of stupidity, so she thought she would give just a little push. If the door opened, then she would enter, otherwise she would retrace her steps back to the main road. The door seemed locked, but pushing wouldn’t harm. To her surprise, the door did welcome her in. She entered with excitement, without first observing how the house looked inside. It was after she entered that she started noticing around. All the things had been left as it is by the previous owners, even though the house had been locked the past 10 years. However meek it was on the outside, the interior gave no less than an impression of a grand palace.
She wondered why there were so many mirrors hanging from the walls. But whatever the reason might have been, it only made the hall shine in the weak moonlight coming from the open door.
She glanced back at the road through the door. The street seemed empty and she couldn’t hear sounds of any approaching vehicles, so she walked towards the house leading away from the hallway. She approached the first door on the left. When she opened it, she found a bedroom which was decorated nicely. She was about to step into the room when something caught her eye. She could see the image of a person in one of the mirrors in the hall.
Her heart shuddered for a moment. She stopped at mid track, looking at the mirror. After a few moments she realised that it was her own image reflected from other mirrors around her.
With a sigh of relief she proceeded into the room. The dust under her feet muffled the sound of her footsteps. The dark room was lit by the moonlight coming from outside. There was a lamp to the right of the door, and a shelf to the left of the door. The wall opposite the door contained only a single window. That wall seemed to have been designed very artistically to give it a very beautiful texture. She wanted to touch the wall and feel what it was made up of. It would look beautiful in my room too, she thought. When she touched it, she felt that it was very smooth, though she couldn’t figure out what it was made up of. She touched it again and again, and finally she realized it. It was human skin. She was shocked. She pulled back her hand as soon as the realization hit her. She ran out of the room into the hall. But this wasn’t the hall she had entered. It was a different room. And this room had many shelves and racks. Placed on the racks were human heads.
Dazed and shocked, a new realization hit her. They were not mirrors but the glass cases reflecting the light, and the thing that had startled her earlier had really been one of the heads blinking. The shock of the moment was too big to contain. She attempted in vain to push herself towards the door, but her legs had started swaying, and her eyes had become dizzy. At one scary moment, she had this awful, heart wrenching feeling that every head in the room was looking at her.
She turned her head and looked around to locate a door. The feeling of many eyes watching her was still there, but she could not muster the courage to look up and see any of the faces. She found a door to her right but as soon as she took a step towards the door, she heard a wail coming from that direction. It was a woman. She could not stop herself from running into the room, forgetting all about the heads. As soon she opened the door and stepped in, she remembered that this house had been empty for 10 years… then how could she hear the cries of a woman!?
She had acted way out of her common sense. She turned back, but now there were two doors instead of one, both looking identical. Blood started rushing through her head and her heart started attempting to break free. In this horror situation, she heard sobs coming from behind her, and with every sob the presence seemed to get closer to her. She couldn’t dare to turn around. Oh why did I have to come here when I could simply have left the house from the main door, she thought. But it was too late. The sobs had stopped, and now she could feel a heavy breath on the back of her neck. A finger started tracing her spine. Adrenaline rushed through her body and she sped out through the right door. As soon as she stepped out of the room, the door closed behind her, and this thud gave her a feeling that this was not where she had meant to escape to. Looking back, there was no door but a stretch of blank wall. This scared the hell out of her. But when she turned to face in front of her, she only felt immense relief on seeing the main gate. She dashed out to freedom.
But as soon as she stepped out of the gate, she realized it. Something simply wasn’t right. She looked back to see, and the house was gone. The place where she stood now was exactly the same as where she had been waiting for Roger moments ago. But something still didn’t feel right.
Just then she heard the sound of a car approaching. It was Roger. She took a deep breath, feeling relieved that tonight’s events were finally over and she would be in the safety of her house in sometime.
The car stopped and Roger stepped out. He started looking around. Anna could not understand what he was doing. He looked right past her when he looked in her direction. She tried to move her arms but realized she was frozen. She could only move her eyeballs. She could not understand though why Roger could not see her.
She attempted to move again, and looked down. She had no body. And then Roger gasped. He was looking straight at the house which was visible now. And the topmost point of the house’s triangular roof wore Anna’s headless body like a crown.
Anna closed her eyes at this horrible sight. And when she opened it again, she was watching Roger from the window through the glass case that preserved her head.