“There’s something under my mattress,” you complain to the hotel attendant.
“Miss, this is the third night you’ve come to complain about something being under the mattress. I’ve personally checked the bed twice already and found nothing. Have you looked under the bed yet?”
You’re nervous at being asked that question. You don’t want to find out what’s under the bed. You know there’s something there, and it terrifies you. You’ve barely slept since arriving that rainy night, and the bags under your eyes make that quite clear.
“Miss?” the attendant snaps you back into reality. “Okay miss. I can tell this is really bothering you. Let’s go check under your bed.”
Your heart pounds. This is not what you wanted. “Oh, um, I have to leave for a- an appointment. You’ll have to check it without me.”
The attendant sighs. “Look, Miss- What’s your name again?”
“Pearle. Kirsten Pearle.”
“Okay Miss Pearle,” she says to you. “This will take a minute. It’s 3 AM, you’re not even dressed, so I know you aren’t in that much of a rush.”
You have no idea when hotel attendants became so lippy, but apparently they are. You’re about to say something sharp in return when you realise that she has already walked away. She’s going to your room. Your heart pounds. You no longer have a choice in the matter, do you?
You rush to catch up to the attendant, already at your door. She opens it and holds it out for you.
You stifle your heavy breaths.
She lifts up the mattress.
Bones. A random assortment of bloody bones are underneath the mattress.
“What the fuck!” cries the attendant. She drops the mattress. She scrambles out of the room and begins calling out someone else’s name. You stand in place, shocked.
The attendant’s voice fades into the background. You hear a new voice speak to you.
“My princess… you knew I was here. Only a true princess could feel my presence.”
The sound comes from under the bed. You can’t help but lift it back up.
“Thank you,” the voice speaks. “You have no idea how stifling it is under there.”
You shake your head. How…
“I’ve been awaiting the arrival of a true princess for so long now. Finally, you are here. We can be united.”