Archive for May 11th, 2012

11th May
2012
written by amber

Solomon

The guests at the Mount Solomon Lodge became aware of his presence gradually. When Doreen and Jessica were doing yoga before breakfast, just as they were finishing off with savasana, lying prone and relaxed with their eyes closed, the room’s door creaked open.

“We’re just about done,” Doreen said softly, hoping not to break the peaceful feelings washing over her.

Jessica sat up. “There’s no one there,” she stated. She jumped up and walked over to the door, looked down the hallway. “No one at all.”

“That’s weird.” Doreen rolled over and sat up. “Must have been a draft.”

At breakfast, they joked about their ghostly yoga-mate. Camille reported that she’d heard a knock on her door in the middle of the night, but no one was there when she opened it.

Crystal, the co-ordinator of their meeting, had had her own nighttime experience. “I heard footsteps going by my room, but when I looked outside, I couldn’t see anyone.”

“Oh, I don’t like this.” Camille shivered.

Doreen suggested, “Let’s ask at the front desk if this place is haunted. At least then we’ll know.”

The hotel clerk said, “Oh, you’re very lucky. Not many of our guests have seen Solomon, our ghost.”

“We didn’t actually see him.”

“Well, you might, but don’t worry. He’s completely harmless. We think he’s an old guy, a trapper, who died in this valley and loved this valley, so he’s hanging around.”

That evening, they saw Solomon, or thought they did. At dusk, they were enjoying cups of hot chocolate while sitting in the gazebo and watching glorious autumn leaves toss around in gusts of warm wind.

“Someone’s walking across the field,” Jessica announced.

“Where?”

Jessica pointed.

“I think I see something,” Camille said.

“He’s gone now.”

“It was kind of a fat guy, with a leather jacket, right?”

“That’s what I saw.”

“I didn’t see anything,” Doreen complained, aware that she had somehow felt a sense of ownership of the ghost, having been the first to hear him knocking and the only one to think of asking hotel staff about him. Why hadn’t he revealed himself to her?

Over the next two days, many people in their group had encounters with Solomon. More doors received late night knocking, things in rooms were moved around (although the strong wind could possibly be blamed for moving lighter objects), he was seen in the yoga room (by Camille who’d been looking for Doreen and who fled upstairs in a panic) and on the balconies.

“This is so strange. Months and months can go by without any sign of Solomon. You guys are really lucky,” one of the waitresses told them.

On the last night of their stay, Doreen was woken at 4 a.m. by a knock on the door. “At last,” she thought, and rushed to open it, expecting to look out and see his portly form walking away. Instead, it was Camille, in pajamas with pink teddy bears. She was crying.

“He knocked and he knocked,” she told Doreen. “I’d get up and answer and no one would be there, then I’d go back to sleep and it would happen again. All night long! I know they say he’s harmless, but this is just mean. I have a long way to drive tomorrow.”

“Come in – there’s two beds. You can have the other one. He never knocks on my door.”

But as Doreen stepped outside to take Camille’s arm and lead her into the room, she smelled something. “Is that smoke?”

The fire was small, in some trees next to the parking lot, but it could have been quickly spread to the Lodge by the wind if they hadn’t raised the alarm.

“Solomon was just protecting his namesake hotel,” Jessica said to Doreen as they were driving away the next day.

“And us,” Doreen added.

The May 10 suggestion from StoryADay was to write a story with a ‘hidden protagonist.’  My thanks to our guests at the Black Cat Guest Ranch for suggesting the ghost theme.