She took a wrong turn somewhere and found herself at the door to a funhouse. The kind full of wonky mirrors and doors beckoning to be opened. There was no sign that said to enter at your own peril. or to not enter at all. So she took that as a sign to simply go ahead and enter. The lights flickered weakly to life the moment she stepped inside, like fire flies on their last breath. When the door closed behind her she heard a soft click. It was subtle but undeniable, and she knew there was no turning back. This house was larger on the inside than it was on the outside—the kind of thing she probably should have expected. It was full of long, narrow corridors, flanked on both sides by numberless rooms full of nightmares and wonders. The very same that always appeared in her dreams—rooms full of messy beds, abandoned playthings and unswept floors. The odd thing was, though, that these rooms had no doors. It made her a bit uneasy, to think of all the things that could enter and leave at leisure. Of all the hands that could reach out and grab her. The hallways were slightly crooked, the carpet a faded forest green and the floors uneven. As she made her way up one way and then down another she could feel the tug of something sinister pulling her farther and farther down the line. Her heart rang like a warning bell inside her chest, but Curiosity was her middle name and she just couldn’t leave until she’d seen what was inside every room. Even though she knew the last room at the end of the hall—the only one with a door—would be her Last. Somehow she also knew that the room at the end of every hall was one and the same, and that it was just the House’s way of having a little fun. Of giving false hope. The illusion of choice. The promise of something evil behind Door #1 but perhaps something good behind Door #2. She peaked inside each room as she went, holding her breath so as not to disturb any grumpy monsters or sleeping dust bunnies. Everything had once been lived in, played with, loved. Everything was now forsaken, forgotten, uncared for. Everything now had that faint mocking gleam of ice cream, sunshine and sparkling delight, but everything was now too dusty to inhale or savor. Every color of every wall, rug and blanket was now just an echo of how bright things used to be. But even so, she could still feel it—how good things had once been. How pink, yellow, green, blue and white things had been—so clean and ready for life. How everyone had laughed, how the piano had played, the tea and sugar stirred, and the stories passed along a neat little conveyor belt of timeless imagination. She probably could have made a home out of any one of these rooms—if she had really wanted. But she just kept moving along, poking her head through each doorless doorway until she realized something odd. She wasn’t getting any closer to the Last Room at the end of the hall. It was almost as if the hallway was playing a trick on her, extending itself into infinity as she kept accepting its crooked invitation. She stopped dead in her tracks and looked. Stared as hard as she could as far down as she could. And it was as if, the door was there but then it wasn’t, and the lights were on but then they weren’t, and the house was laughing but then it wasn’t; and it was like she wasn’t dreaming—but then it was like she was.