Excerpt for The Warehouse Tour (Short Read) by , available in its entirety at Smashwords





THE WAREHOUSE TOUR

A Short Story


K.A. CUMMINS





Copyright 2017 K.A. Cummins

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed, in any form or by any means, without prior written approval from the author, except in the case of brief quotes, cited, for the purpose of a review or promotion and other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests, contact the author at authorkacummins@gmail.com.

Cover Image: Storyblocks.com

ISBN: 9781370744770


This is a work of fiction. Names, places, characters, businesses, and events are either a product of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or deceased, or real events is coincidental.


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THE TOUR


How did I let him talk me into this? Jill wondered. She hated anything scary but her brother, Josh, had made the haunted tour sound so fun and, after breaking up with her boyfriend, she needed to get out of the apartment.

Packed between the four-story-high industrial building and the edge of an eight-foot-wide sidewalk, dozens of people, mostly teenagers, eagerly awaited their turn to enter the building. All of the voices blended into a loud murmur, drowning out the sounds of the surrounding city. Jill could barely hear Josh and Nick talking.

"Hey, Nick! Did you know she worked here?" Josh shook the shoulder of the lean, dark-haired boy beside him.

"Who?"

"Amber." He pointed to the striking redhead collecting tickets from the group ahead of them. Her translucent skin glimmered in the light of the full moon.

"You don't know what you are getting yourself into with her." Nick shook his head. "You sure you wanna go there?"

Amber had just transferred into J.F.K High School at the beginning of October. Every guy at school wanted her. They were drawn to her golden eyes and lush pink lips, like bees to a flower. Amber always smelled of warm, toasted honey.

Brushing the soft, blonde hair away from her face, Jill straightened her spine and glanced away. She watched the clouds billow out of the storm drain, vanishing into the atmosphere. The musky smell of flesh clung to the rising steam. Jill shivered.

The crowd shifted again, moving them closer to the door. With each step, her anxiety mounted. She should have said no. Tapping her brother on the shoulder, "Josh, I am not sure I'm up for this."

"You'll be fine, Jill,” he snapped.

Jill looked at him, wide-eyed, but said nothing.

With a huff, he softened his tone and smiled, “Just think how much fun it'll be."

"Next!" A deep voice called out, barely audible above the crowd.

“Look, if you don't want to go, just wait outside for us. It shouldn't take more than twenty minutes."

"Where should I wait? I don't see where people are coming out."

"Next!" The large, muscular man standing next to Amber bellowed again. He motioned for their group to come forward.

"We gotta go. Just wait here, and we'll find you."

Josh and Nick hurried off with the rest of their friends. Jill stood off to the side in the shadows beyond the edge of the large crowd waiting to get inside. She watched them disappear into the warehouse.

An hour later, only a group of adult professionals remained in line. Jill paced as they prepared to enter. Josh and his friends had not returned. Surely, it didn't take so long to go through and find the way back to the front of the building. She pulled out her phone and texted her brother again.

Where are you?

She waited a few moments before sending another text.

Going around the block. Wait out front for me.

The warehouse took up the whole block. Streetlights invaded the dark on every side, except one. Jill turned her back on the alley and followed the sidewalk around the building. There wasn't a lot of traffic here at night, mostly cabs looking to pick up fares.

She turned the corner. A few blocks to her right, the interstate passed over the road. The large windows at the top of the brick building continued, but there were no doors, only a giant sign. Its faded lettering indecipherable. She scanned the sidewalk as she made her way to the next corner. Nothing except trash, and most of it the small paper flyers advertising the haunted tour.


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