You're standing in your bathroom, checking your fit in the toothpaste spattered mirror. It's five o' clock, Eastern Standard Time, and you've got thirty minutes before you're supposed to be out the door. No openers, just their new album, back to front. You can already almost hear the choir sing. You take another look at the flyer-- "august 14, 7pm doors 8pm show, all ages BYOB, venue is gloryglorylive.com. $7 entry at the door but no one turned away for lack of funds." Finally. You've been waiting all summer, and the night is finally here.
You've got some time to kill before you head out.
Do you [[head back into your bedroom to continue agonizing over yr look]] or go [[meet up with yr pals?]]You glare at the pile of black t-shirts on the floor, each bearing an equally indecipherable logo. For most metal shows, you're happy to blend in, adopt the uniform, jockey for the most obscure and faded tour shirt. Maybe this show is special, though. Maybe this time, you'd like to stand out?
Do you [[wear the black t-shirt and jeans you've already got on->Your Outfit]] or [[go with something brightly colored, maybe sequins?->Your Outfit]]Everyone's gonna be at the show but-- were you supposed to meet there? You check your phone but all your friends are maddeningly vague in the group text. Do you [[kill time, and bike to the show on your own]] or [[clarify plans in the text, and set up a carpool]]?You look and feel amazing. Now you're ready to [[meet up with yr pals->meet up with yr pals?]].It's shaping up to be a beautiful night. The sun is starting to set, but you've got your bike lights on, and high-vis strips on your backpack. Of course, safety on a bike is often completely out of your hands, but tonight isn't the night to dwell on that. Instead, you luxuriate in the sense of your body in motion, blowing through the streets & the valleys of your town. You're halfway to the venue when you think "Shit, should I stop and grab drinks for the show? Did I remember earplugs?" You take one hand off the handlebars and pat your pocket-- yup, good on earplugs. Do you [[need a beverage]] or will [[your ever-present BPA free reusable water bottle]] get you through the night? You furiously text, and set up a plan. One of yr buds has a van, everyone's gonna meet at their place. You hop on your bike and [[get moving]].BEVERAGES OBTAINED. On your way out of the store, you notice a flyer. You're in a bit of a time rush, but your eye is caught by the phrases "help wanted", "haunted", and "large reward." Do you [[head off to the venue]], or [[slow down to read the flyer]]?Ah, your trusty non-branded reusable water bottle. It's covered in faded stickers, and is mostly mold-free. No time to admire it, you've [[got to get to the gig!->head off to the venue]] It's shaping up to be a beautiful night. The sun is starting to set, but you've got your bike lights on, and high-vis strips on your backpack. Of course, safety on a bike is often completely out of your hands, but tonight isn't the night to dwell on that. Instead, you luxuriate in the sense of your body in motion, the wind whipping past your face, and the smells and sounds of a summer night in your town. It's a short ride to yr bud's place, and everyone's already there by the time you get there. Y'all pile into the van and [[head off to the venue]], with maybe [[a stop along the way to pick up drinks->need a beverage]]. You're finally here. All your friends are here, milling around the parking lot, and you're all about to watch Vile Creature play through their new album, "Glory, Glory! Apathy Took Helm!" A surly but polite enough security guard checks your ID and takes your $7 at the door, and all of a sudden, you're inside the venue, angling for the perfect vantage point. The band's equipment is all set up on stage, and you can see their merch table in the back of the room, ready for perusal during a quiet moment. All of a sudden, the crowd noise raises from a murmur to a commotion, and you realize KW and Vic and their special guests for this show are taking the stage. You made it! <a href= http://www.gloryglorylive.com/show > The show is about to start! </a href>"HELP WANTED. MY GRANDFATHER HAS RECENTLY PASSED, AND LEFT ME HIS PALATIAL ESTATE. UNFORTUNATELY, THERE IS ONE CONDITION. I MUST SPEND THE NIGHT THERE, AND IT IS RUMORED TO BE DANGEROUSLY HAUNTED. I AM ASKING FOR TOUGH INDIVIDUALS TO ATTEND THIS POTENTIALLY PERILOUS PYJAMA PARTY TO GUARD ME. LARGE REWARD OFFERED." There's an address and a date at the bottom of the flyer. Eldritch thoughts fill your restless mind. Looks like you can [[just show up, if you've got the guts]]. Or you can [[head to the show->head off to the venue]], for an assured delightful evening filled with riffs, instead of vengeful visions. Still... there is that large reward... You arrive at the address printed on the flyer. The mansion is straight out of a Hammer film, and while it's not raining, you swear you saw lightning strike somewhere in the backyard when you pulled up. Still not too late to [[make it to the show->head off to the venue]].
The door is open, and the lights in the foyer appear to be on, but you can't see any other signs of life. Do you [[enter]]?The air feels... wrong, as you step over the threshold. The foyer is as opulent as expected, but you can just feel the decay under the gilded surfaces.
[["Hello?"]]You wake up with a start, and check your watch. What a weird dream.
Shit! It's 4:55! You better get ready for the show! You dash to [[your bathroom]] to get ready.You'd expect your voice to echo in a space this large, but it doesn't. Your query is a little flat noise swallowed almost instantly. There's no sign of anyone else, and the lights are decidedly not on in the rest of the building. Just here. Only in the foyer.
You try again, a little louder. "I'm here about the flyer! Hello? Anybody there?"
Something responds-- there's a noise in the darkness, a heavy thud. It sounds like it came from the adjourning room to the west, uncomfortably close. At this point, you feel drawn to the darkness, you have [[no choice but to investigate]]. You slowly and carefully shuffle into the pitch black room. While sound was muffled and dulled in the expansive foyer, every breath and bump feels impossibly loud here. You smash your shins into a coffee table, barely managing to stay upright while hissing in pain. The unexpected obstruction halts your movement for a second, and in that moment, you hear a faint whisper from deeper into the darkness.
[["I am home..."]]The voice is like nothing you've ever heard, a degraded approximation of human speech. You look back, considering a hasty retreat, but the light of the foyer is... just gone? The darkness has become absolute.
"You have come seeking wealth, but you will not leave," the voice continues. In fact, now all you can hear is this voice, whispering horrific entreaties. You can't hear your gasps for air, your cries for mercy.
Just the voice, only reduced by an [[ever increasing darkness wiping away your consciousness]].