Scarlett and Greyson scrambled up and out of the room. Greyson reached the apartment door before her and after unlocking it, yanked it open and stepped into the dimly lit entrance hall. He held up his hand and stopped Scarlett from following him. She opened her mouth to argue, but Greyson was all ready moving off and turning on all the lights.
The hallway and staircase were empty. Greyson turned and went into the other door behind the reception desk. The alarm still continued to ringing out as Scarlett waited for his return. Suddenly the noise was cut off and instead of being deafened by the beeping, silence took over. Scarlett took a few deep breaths then walked into what was the staff area.
Greyson was lent over the desk looking through the CCTV.
‘I don’t see anything,’ he said with a glance at Scarlett in the doorway.
‘But we heard the door…’ she stated.
He nodded, ‘maybe it was the wind or we didn’t shut one in the attic.’
‘How could we hear that all the way down here?’
Greyson shrugged, ‘echo? I don’t know. Let’s wait here for the police.’
Scarlett yawed, ‘I’m going back to bed.’
‘All right. Don’t lock the door.’
‘Okay,’ Scarlett said.
Turning, she went back to their rooms and got into bed. Wrapping herself up and trying to find some warmth still in the bed, Scarlett wondered what was going on. She couldn’t be imagining these things if Greyson was hearing them too. It wouldn’t make sense for both of them to be going crazy with stress either. Shivering, she hugged herself and decided there was no way she could slept till Greyson was back.
Grabbing her book, she tried to read but she could not concentrate. Then the police arrived and disturbed her more. Scarlett listened to the rise and fall of their voices and footsteps. Feeling reassured, she turned back to her book. Turning the page, she felt a cold breeze on her hands. She balanced the book on her knees and put her hands under the duvet.
As the silence settled again, Scarlett thought she heard a soft voice whispering. She looked up and out of the doorway, thinking it nothing more then Greyson coming back or the police. Listening harder, she didn’t hear anything. Shaking her head and putting it down to the house moving, she began reading again.
Scarlett’s head shot up and her eyes darted around the room. The words resounding in her mind. There was no doubting the child’s voice she had just heard. Sitting back, she licked her lips and clutched the edges of the open book.
‘H-Hello?’ Scarlett whispered, her voice slightly cracking.
‘Please,’ the voice said after a few moments.
‘Who are you?’
The question hung in the air, unanswered. Scarlett got up and searched the room. The voice had sounded so close, almost at her ear. She checked under the bed and saw nothing but empty suitcases. Kneeling, she looked around then opened the drawer of her bedside table. The idea that someone was playing a joke or a trick on her came to mind. Closing the drawer, she checked the other furniture and found nothing out of place.
‘I’m not going crazy,’ she muttered, ‘tell me who you are and what you want. I can help you.’
She sat on the bed and listened hard, but the voice did not return. A blast of cold air had her grabbing at the duvet then she heard Greyson’s voice and the rough ones’ of the police. The front door shut and Scarlett breathed heavily. She got back into the bed and was busy trying to get warm as Greyson walked in.
‘Nothing. Again,’ he growled, ‘no sign of anyone breaking in or hiding upstairs.’
‘We should be glad of that,’ Scarlett responded.
Greyson got into bed and punched his pillow before throwing the duvet over his head.
‘I just don’t get it,’ Greyson’s muffled voice answered, ‘why is all this weirdness happening? It’s going beyond stress now. Maybe there’s someone messing with us. A local villager who doesn’t want us to reopen the hotel?’
Scarlett shook her head, ‘no, why? That doesn’t make sense. Surely, they’d be happy for the work and the tourists again. Don’t you remember what the second estate agent said? The villages were hit hard when this place closed five years ago and they have been desperate for it to re-open.’
‘Homeless people then? or a gang of teenagers?’ Greyson suggested, coming out from the duvet.
‘I don’t know. Let’s forget it now and go to sleep.’
Greyson growled and rolled over. He turned out the lights and carried on mumbling, but Scarlett couldn’t understanding him. Taking a last look around the bedroom in the light from her lamp, Scarlett reached over and turned it off. Laying down, she wondered about the whispering voice and though she had never believed in ghosts, she was starting to think it might be the answer all the disturbances.
The ringing of a phone jerked Scarlett awake. She rolled over and knocked into Greyson’s back. Pushing away, she sat up, hand going to sweep back her hair as she looked confusingly around the bedroom. Her brain started to recognize the ringing tone as being Greyson’s mobile phone. She nudged him and saw a hand groping out of the bed and fumbling along the bedside table.
‘Hello?’ Greyson’s sleepy, gruff voice said as the ringing was cut off, ‘Yes…It’s okay. Can I just…Oh…Give me a moment.’
Greyson got up and made to leave the room, phone tight to his ear.
‘What is it?’ Scarlett asked.
‘Why? What’s going on?
Greyson shook his head and left the room. Scarlett got up and trailed after him as he went into the study. She lingered in the doorway and listened to the one sided conversation, but she wasn’t able to gauge much. Finally, he put the phone down and turned to her.
‘Something’s going on with the sell of the B ‘n’ B. I’m going to have to go down and sort it out today.’
‘Wait. What? I thought that was all sorted,’ Scarlett asked.
‘There’s some dispute or confusion over the land next to the car park and there’s some forms or something that need signing,’ Greyson explained.
‘I guess we should go then…’
‘They only need one of us. And there’s still too much to do here. I’ll go, it won’t take long. Though, are you going to be okay by yourself?’
Scarlett paused, ‘I guess so…’
‘Unless you want to go instead?’ Greyson asked.
‘No, no it’s fine. You’re right. The living room and dining room still need sorting and I have to get the jobs advertised too,’ she replied quickly, ‘are you going to be okay?’
‘Yes. I’ll pop into see my parents too, maybe. Right, got to move.’
Greyson kissed her and walked out of the room. She listened to him going into the bathroom then casting her eyes around the scatterings of papers and mess in the study, Scarlett decided she needed to start in there first.
To Be Continued..