• I wake up from a dark, black sleep. ‘Where am I?,’ I wonder as I stand, and look around. All there is, is stairs. Thousands of them, it seems. They lead upside-down, sideways, and over, making random paths to doors that I had not noticed before.

    “Hello? Is anybody there?” I call out. I wait, but to no response. ‘Do I dare step onward? Or should I wait until someone comes?’ I sigh, but feel something pulling inside of me to search. I hesitantly take a step, and start on my way.

    After what feels like hours of climbing, twists, turns, and upside-downs, I finally reach one of the doors. My hand shaking wearily, I turn the hand, and push the heavy door away from its frame. Music blasts out in a wave, and shakes me to the bone. I pull the door closed and press my ear against the wood, yet no sound escapes.

    I open the door again, ready for the sound this time, and walk inside. The bass pounds through my body as I look around the room. Across from me, I see another door. ‘Maybe I can get out of this mad place,’ I think to myself and press onward into the wall of people.

    The crowd thrashes wildly to the beat of the song, making it difficult to go anywhere. “If you want to get through, you have to dance,” a voice whispers in my ear, somehow heard over the crowd. “Who’s there?” I yell, but my voice is drowned out. I try to push my way through, ignoring the voice, thinking it was just noise around me. “Come, my dear, trust me. I wouldn’t lead you wrong,” the voice says. I look around for a voice, but all I see is a DJ that looks focused on the music.

    I decide to trust this voice, that comes from this messed up dream, and start to dance, slowly at first, then faster as my mind gets lost in the music. Almost immediately as I started to dance, the wall of people began to split apart, giving me access to the door. I start to walk towards the door, and find the people grouping together again.

    “Ah-ah-ah. That’s not how this game works, my pet. Continue to dance for your passage.”
    I set my face in a scowl, but start to dance again, and again, the crowd separates. In a series of twirls and jumps to propel myself across the room, I make it across the room. When I look back, the party, people, DJ, and music, are all gone, leaving the room scarily quiet after the mind-numbing sound.

    “Alright. I’ve done what you wanted, now you have to let me go,” I demand angrily, using it to try and mask my confusion.

    “I can’t let you go yet. There are so many other things to do and see. You will find many doors. Each room with it’s own challenges, and they will frustrate you...but also teach you. After you reach the end, you get to choose to go home, or to stay in this world.”

    “That sounds ludicrous. This is just a dream. A cruel, odd, figment of my imagination. I am more than sure that I will wake up soon.” I roll my shoulders back and stand as tall and proud as I can before walking through the door.

    “We shall see, pet, we shall see.” I hear a laugh and a loud click as the door shuts, and locks behind me, before a small “poof” and the door is gone.