A young college student's first attempt at an audition doesn't go as planned
|The Truman College drama/theater department put on a new production every three months, alternating between plays and musicals. Maggie had never auditioned for anything before. This was something out of her comfort zone but that was okay. Truman College was a new start for her. She was jittery with nerves and excitement. She could only hope she did well on her audition. The young woman would have been happy with even a small part to start off with. She was glad one of the girls in her dorm was a drama major. When Maggie had expressed interest and asked questions, the other girl had answered all her questions and encouraged her to audition.
Of course, the day she goes to audition happens to cloudy. The morning had been a little sunny but the clouds had rolled in around noon. The weather said to expect a storm to start that evening. With bad weather on the way, Maggie was glad that the auditorium wasn’t far from her dorm so the walk wouldn’t take long. Since the entire walk took only ten minutes, Maggie arrived at her destination just before five. The auditions didn’t start until five-thirty but she wanted to make sure she was on time.
The hallways of the drama department were deserted and silent when she entered. Maggie frowned as she walked forward towards the auditorium itself. She didn’t hear anyone or anything. She knew she had the right date, time and location, having double-checked before she left. Even if many students had shown up yet, the head of the department should have been there getting ready. According to her dorm mate, Mrs. Oslo was always the first person there when they were auditioning. The crew sign-up had been the day before so if Mrs. Oslo couldn’t make it for whatever reason, usually the assistant and casting directors usually handled it. This was also according to her dorm mate, along with several other drama students.
The woman opened one of the theater doors and poked her head inside. The theater was mostly dark, with only a single spotlight on center stage. There were no voices, no signs of anyone being in the theater at all. She stepped the rest of the way into the large room. There was something eerie about being alone in a building that was usually full of people.
“Hello?” Maggie called into the shadows.
There was no answer. She really didn’t know what she was expecting. There was no one there. It shouldn’t have been unusual, as there were no evening classes that day but none of the production crew was there when they should have been. Maggie took a few steps down the walkway and looked down towards the orchestra pit. Of course, there was nobody in the pit. She didn’t know what she was expecting. She didn’t understand why there was a spotlight on if there was no one else there. She was starting to feel a bit creeped out. She took a few more steps toward the stage before she heard a door creak open in the hallway on the other side of the theater, opposite of where she’d entered.
She shook herself and walked back to the theater doors. It would be better to wait by the front doors. That sounded like a good plan. As she reached the doors, she thought she heard thunder and rain. She stepped back out into the hallway outside the theater, shutting the door behind her and crossing her arms over her chest. When she turned to the entrance doors, she could see the rain coming down. It didn’t look like it was a down pour yet, though it was going to get worse. She looked around and still saw no one in the hallway. She rubbed her hands up and down her arms, feeling cold. Maggie debated whether she should wait longer or not. She wanted to get back to her dorm before the weather got too much worse.
As Maggie paced around the hallway, her mind kept going back to the creaking door. There had to be somebody else there. Was it a crew member or somebody from the cleaning staff? She waited another few minutes but no one came in. She checked her watch. It was now ten minutes after five. Had they cancelled the auditions due to the weather? Had they made an announcement about it that she had missed? Maggie dug through her bag for her cell phone. There were several missed calls and messages. There were two about the auditions being canceled and were going to be rescheduled. She groaned in annoyance, though she was more annoyed with herself. She’d missed them because she’d turned her phone’s volume down. She was disappointed but it wasn’t the end of the world. She’d just go to the rescheduled one. At least she didn’t have to stay in the building alone for any longer then she had.
Maggie was returning her cell phone when the sound of something hitting the tile floor startled her. The sound echoed through the hallways, making them sound even more cavernous then before. It sounded like somebody had dropped a folder full of paper. With the echo it was hard to determine where the sound was coming from. The hallways were dark and ominous. The lights had timers and sensors.These caused the lights shut off after a certain time if there weren’t people around but any movement would activate the sensors, turning them back on. The storm clouds and rain only added to the darkness. She was even more creeped out than she’d been earlier. Had the sound come from the other hallway? Was it Mrs. Oslo gathering her things after the canceled audition? She swallowed hard before walking the hallway that passed in front of the theater and connected the two opposing hallways that way. There was another connecting hallway behind the theater as well.
Maggie turned the corner and had only taken a few steps down the other hallway when she saw it. A dark figure was leaning around the theater from the other connecting hallway. She froze in place, staring at the figure. There was a mess of paper scattered in front of it. She couldn’t make out any details of the figure as it stood at the head of the hallway. It started at the mess in front of it before laughing a grating, maniacal laugh. The sound of the laugh echoing against the walls snapped her out of her stupor. She took a several slow steps backwards toward the other hallway. It turned to look at her haltingly. The figure tilted its head before deliberately stepping over the papers into the connecting hallway between them. Despite the figure’s movements, the light sensors in that hallway didn’t trigger.
Before it could take another step, Maggie sprinted for the door she’d come in. She could hear the figure behind her, laughing as it followed with the same slow deliberate steps. The young woman hit the doors hard, slamming them open as she ran outside and up the path away from the building. Once she was outside she no longer heard it behind her. She paused and turned back to see nothing. It was gone. There was nothing behind her now. She saw nothing in the windows and no lights coming on. Still freaked out, Maggie hurried back to her dorm to calm down and relax. She was glad she had the next few days off.