Day Three: Kate
Kate woke up and saw that she was in the same thing that she had worn the night before. It was a nice dress, and it was definitely one she would like to wear again in the future, but she was not fond of repeating wardrobes in this fashion as often as some people were and she thought it would be worth changing. So, rather than wait until the last minute before changing like she did yesterday, she decided to do it right away. As she showered she sang to herself and smiled at the thought that she and the bellhop had ended a successful first date with a kiss. She might have pressed for more, but she realized he was a shy person and it was better not to move to fast, especially since they had who knows how long to spend together. He had been in this hotel a long time, so she was sure that they had many future dates to enjoy, so long as she could keep her friend from screwing everything up. She was sure that Ashley could be kept from that, as she seemed to have no idea of interrupting them or anything like that. With this thought, she showered herself clean and toweled herself off. She had to use the same towel as yesterday, but that wasn’t a problem to her. She wondered if they would get fresh towels. She might have to talk to the bellhop about that, as she was sure that he would be the one managing that task.
She looked outside the room after having dressed in some nice slacks and a blouse, and saw that the “Do Not Disturb” sign was still hanging on the door. She was sure that she had taken it off last night as she opened the door, but perhaps she had been to ecstatic about the kiss to do so, and perhaps Ashley had not been outside and realized that there was a sign on the door that was keeping them from getting fresh towels. If someone as relatively laid back as she was could think that perhaps fresh towels would be good, she was sure that Ashley would be very interested in having fresh towels. After moving the sign back inside so that it would not hinder her laundry service, she sat back on the bed and thought to herself. She had so many questions about the place that she had not been able to get answered, and she didn’t want to bother the bellhop. She remembered that he had given her a number to call for an information line, so she picked up the receiver from the somewhat archaic device–who had home phones anymore, after all–and she dialed *411 like the bellhop said. She waited for the automated response she knew was coming. “Thank you for calling the La Hotel Espero information line. Please clearly state your question.” The voice didn’t sound altogether like Siri. She hestitated a bit, but only a bit, before she started asking her questions.
“Where am I?” She asked. “You are at La Hotel Espero,” the computerized female voice replied helpfully. “What country am I in?” There was a pause. “I do not understand your question” was the reply. “What is the location of this hotel? Surely it has an address, right?” There was more silence on the line. “I am afraid that I cannot answer that question.” She was a bit more concerned. How in the world could she be at a place where giving the physical address was a problem? Surely this hotel belonged to a place on the map, right? She continued. “How many hotels does your chain have?” “That information is private, sorry,” the voice intoned. “How many employees does your hotel have?” “That information is classified, but there is one employee for the location you are staying in.” It was she had figured, then, that the bellhop had been all alone just as he said he was. Why was so much classified information that she couldn’t get. Wasn’t this an information line? There was supposed to be information here. “What sort of internet does this hotel have.” “We regret to inform you that there is no internet access at your location.” What sort of place in this time didn’t have internet? It was rather mysterious. “Where is the nearest airport to this hotel?” “The nearest hotel is in Portland, Oregon,” came the reply. She was taken aback. Now that is mighty mysterious indeed, she thought. “Who paid for my hotel room?” “You received a complementary week’s stay from our management.” “Do I know the management of this hotel?” “You likely will,” came the reply. Now she was deeply puzzled and troubled. Who were these mysterious people?
She put down the phone with considerable reluctance. How could she see where they were? Was there anything that would give them some kind of clue? She was still a bit bored and it was early in the afternoon and so she tried to turn on the tv with the volume low so as not to disturb her sleeping roommate. She didn’t see very much of interest on the television. All of the shows and movies dealt with rather odd and somewhat disturbing themes. There were a lot of films about ghosts. There was a documentary about the Dia De Los Muertos, but she wasn’t very interested in that. She saw the costumes and makeup and thought to herself that she hadn’t dressed up for Halloween or enjoyed any such costume events for a long while. Maybe Ashley was more into that she was. Perhaps a good masquerade ball would be nice, but in their present company it wouldn’t be hard at all for everyone to figure out who was behind the mask, so it wasn’t worth even trying to disguise one’s identity. Although it would be entertaining for the three only people in the world, so far as she knew, to try to disguise themselves, she figured that it would be difficult to have all of the supplies for a masquerade, and so she put the idea out of her mind, however amusing it was.
She finally settled on something to watch to distract her mind a little. She had always loved music and saw that there was a documentary about musicians on a channel, whichever one it was, as this hotel did not have very many. What was in common among all of these musicians is that their lives had all ended too soon. There was the 27 club, made up of all of those musicians who had died at the age of 27, and there were a lot of them: Brian Jones, Amy Winehouse, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain, and a lot of less famous musicians whose names she did not recall. The subject matter was, in her mind at least, rather morbid. She tried to remember what time of year it was, but she had not seen any yellow leaves in the car ride here, and she had not seen outside at all since she got here. Suddenly a thought came to mind. If there was one person here who would be able to help her get a good view, she knew that the bellhop would have some idea of where a view could be seen. Perhaps one could not get a great view from walking around the grounds, although that might be fun to do at some point, but if there was a place where one could get a great view, he would definitely be the person who would know about it.
She picked up the phone and called the other number, a bit uncertain about what to say, and dialed *153. The phone was answered promptly. “Hey, it’s Kate,” she said. “Good afternoon,” he replied thoughtfully. “I was thinking about our date tonight.” “Alright, what were you thinking?” “Would you mind eating a little bit early and eating something light?” “Sure, no problem. I’m sure I could whip up a salad and sandwich pretty quickly. Was there anything you wanted to look at today?” “Well, is there any sort of view here?” “There is one place we can look at for a view, if you’d like. But we’d probably have to finish eating by about 4 to 4:30 in order to see much of anything.” “What time is it now?” “It’s about 3PM.” “I’ll through on something and meet you at the lobby.” “Sounds good to me. See you soon,” he said. “You don’t mind going out in your work clothes tonight, do you?” “No, that’s fine with me, as long as you don’t mind it.” “Of course I don’t mind at all,” he replied, smiling to himself a bit even though he knew she couldn’t see it. “Alright, I’ll get ready and see you in a few,” she said before hanging up the phone.
Now, what was there to do, she wondered to herself. She didn’t have a purse to carry with her, but one thing she did like about this pair of pants is that unlike so much clothing that she saw, it did have a pocket, and so she slid the key into the pocket and got up from bed. She looked once again to see that her roommate was still sleeping, as she thought it would be nice if they were able to have a conversation at some point. She thought of how weird it was for someone to share sleeping space without having a conversation. Of course, they had talked a bit last night, but she was asleep right away, it seemed, and she wondered how nocturnal of habits Ashley had. She hoped that Ashley was alright–she usually wasn’t asleep at 4PM. She pondered to herself about how this place was so closed in. How come there weren’t any windows? Perhaps she could ask the bellhop if there was a customer suggestion line to go along with the not very informative information line, but there were many things to talk about and a good deal of time to do it, she supposed, so she wouldn’t sure if she would bring up the question today. Perhaps it was something that would come up in the moment. A lot of things were like that, she said to herself as she walked to the door, opened it and then closed it behind her, and walked to the lobby. She saw the bellhop standing at the desk and giving her a friendly not. “Are you ready?” “Let me sign out,” he said, quickly punching his clock a bit early for once, and then it was off to the restaurant for their date.