It was a grey cloudy Thursday, June 9th, 1998. On the quiet street of Pearlwood Crescent stood a house that resided there as if no calamity had ever touched it. The outside of the house was grey bricked, with uneasy cement between the cracks.
In the house was Jason Sinclare, a normal sixteen year old boy with a puffy long black mullet… like Daryl Hall (the singer from Hall & Oats). Even if the style was old fashioned, he didn’t care because he had an interest in 80s music. His eyes were dark green, the same colour as the pines on a fir tree. He was wearing his favourite black hoodie with flames on the bottom that rose up to his chest.
It was 5:00pm, Jason’s father, Eric, was working in his dark and intense laboratory and Jason was pretending to be his assistant. Meanwhile, in the TV room, his older brother Simon was watching The Outer Limits. It was the revised version. He was 16 months older than Jason.
Simon liked the modern hairstyle that was popular with all teenagers. Simon was a blue eyed, brown haired, seventeen year old. He is a very decent guy, save from his behaviour, as he sure likes to tease his brother every chance he gets. On one occasion, when he put shaving cream in the hood of Jason’s hoodie. Simon laughed when Jason put his hood up as cream poured from his head. He did not like that very much.
As for his mom, Katherine. She was a professional dream enthusiast, and was interested in lucid dreaming.
When Jason was twelve, he saw his mom reading a Houdini book. He thought that was pretty unusual.
Things would happen around the Sinclare house that were always hard to explain. She would say, “It was just nature.” The boys found it very odd when their mom had her lucid dream meetings. They were sometimes afraid to invite friends to stay the night. Jason would have weird visions in his mind that would creep him out.
Eric was a scientist, and he had a habit of going down to his lab to work on various projects in the evening. It’s not that he was crazy or lazy, but he sometimes didn’t comb his hair or change his clothes for a day or two. He would concentrate so hard on work that his eye glasses would fall off and crash land on the hard-bricked floor, forcing him to replace many pairs of glasses, and waste hundreds of dollars. He would get stuck on a project or a thought and stay in the basement for days at a time. He would also be balancing equations and formulas which would give him eye strain and headaches. His meals would have to be taken down into the basement by his wife or the boys. Jason and Simon hated it, but they had no choice considering their allowance was involved.
“Dad? Why do I have to be here? You know this experiment won’t work, right? The others didn’t,” Jason sighed and looked across the lab table at his disorganized, stressed out father. They were in the darkest room of their home with only a small light on the table.
This was where Jason’s father conducted his questionable experiments.
“Now Jason, don’t be selfish. Pull yourself together and help me add ingredients to my potion. This is really important, I must get this done.”
In Jason’s opinion, this was one of the reasons that his father’s otherworldly experiments were doomed to fail. He had a passion for improving the human body... making it faster, stronger and highly intelligent, and was determined to create a super being. Even healing Katherine from her dream-phase was one of his goals. She hadn’t been spending enough time with the rest of her family. He just wanted to spend more time with her, like the old days.
Jason thought about their family crisis, sighed, gave in, and helped his dad.
Suddenly, the lab door crashed open, and Jason’s brother Simon rushed in.
“Jason, there is something on tv you’re gonna like! Something about a Station Hotel.”
Jason rolled his eyes and looked at his brother.
“What? Come on Simon! None of what you're saying makes sense...It sounds like you’re trying to trick me!"
Simon thought his own teasing made Jason worldly. Simon knows that Jason was very rigid in his routines and Simon liked to change things up once in a while.
“It’s true Jason, I swear!!”
Simon could be fairly decent, as far as brothers go, but he made a regular habit of scaring or tricking Jason at every available opportunity.
“You must be watching those stupid science shows again!”, exclaimed Jason.
“They're not stupid..." Simon mumbled. "Er, I mean... you better come and see this.. now!”
Jason moved toward the door. He was about to sneak away and see what in the world Simon was referring to, until his father’s hand touched his right shoulder.
He turned to face his father. “Jason…”
Jason whined as he recognized his father’s tone,“ But..Dad.”
“No buts… You can go after. We’re almost done here, besides I need you for this part. You know that your mother has always been paranoid about my experiments, and she’s far more comfortable when someone else is with me in case something goes awry.”
With a final sigh, Jason resigned himself to witness yet another uneventful experiment.
Jason made the getaway after his father gave him permission to go.
As soon as Jason entered the TV room, Simon was completely hyper focused staring at the television screen.
Simon didn’t hear Jason enter the room, he was that glued to the T.V.
“You wanted to see me, Simon?”
“What are you watching?” asked Jason.
“It looks like the local news,” answered Simon. “But something about it is reeeeaaally strange. They’re talking about this building called the Station Hotel just 5 miles outside of town on Shadowman’s hill.” “But, they’re not really sure if this hotel exists or not..”
“What are you talking about, Simon? You serious?!”
“Yeah! They say that sometimes the hotel is there, and sometimes, its not.”
“I think you’re crazy!”
“It may sound crazy. But the weirdest thing is these news guys, don’t seem to think there is anything odd about that.”
Jason and Simon continued to watch the television. A news reporter was on the scene.
“Good afternoon, I’m Kurt Chester and I am here with Stefan. Stefan, can you tell everybody what you saw?”
The camera turned to face Stefan, as his face was blurred, but they could still see his lips moving as he talked.
“My face better not be on here, can you blur it for me?” requested Stefan.
“Of course we can.. anyway, what do you know?”
“Well, this Station Hotel is not usually a place to have things that can be stolen. The building is completely secure and should not be bothered with."
“Are there any residents inside the Hotel?” asked the reporter.
“Well to be honest, we only have the employees here, but we've only had visitors a couple of times!” said Stefan.
“Do you think the Station Hotel should be demolished?”
“Heck no! I think it deserves a second chance, as far as I know!” said Stefan.
“Hmm well the builders are sure thinking about taking it down and replacing it for a new spa.. how do you feel about their idea?” the reporter asked again.
“We don’t need that! I mean… we as the people should vote about it. Besides, maybe renovating it would be a great start.”
“Thanks for chatting Stefan..”
“Now we are back to the studio with Susan… Susan?”
Just before the camera transitions back to the studio, Stefan mouths, “Help me Jason.”
“What was that?!” said Jason.
“What was what?”
“THAT! Did you see that?”
“That Stefan guy said something to the camera.. well he mouthed it!”
“He was probably telling the camera man to keep things confidential. You're crazy!"
“Am I Simon? Not only that he was looking at the camera, but it felt like he was staring right through me.. calling my name.”
“You hang out with mom too much.. she’s right, your imagination is SUPER active!” smirked Simon.
“I’m not lying,” Jason muttered.
“Well, okay then. Let’s say that it did happen.. what do you suppose it means?”
“It means that someone is trying to communicate with me.. This Stefan guy needs my help,” said Jason.
“I wonder why...Anyway, do you want an iced tea?” Simon smirked as he walked towards the fridge with his back towards Jason.
“Why not.. I am in need of a cold one!”
“Coming right up!”
Simon reached into the fridge to grab one iced tea, and grabbed the other one out of the freezer.
“Oh Jason, you think you knew about my previous prank, how about this one?!” thought Simon.
While Jason was watching the entertainment part of the news, his vision blurs. At first, he thought something was in his eyes, but then there was a vivid vision.
“Oh no, what the?!” Jason said instantly.
His felt his hands transitioning into pins and needles. This vision seemed different compared to when he was a kid. Of all the visions Jason has gotten over the years, this one became the most strangest. What he saw first was a high school memory of a classmate getting mad at him for not getting the volleyball.. he looked to his left as his past self.. and saw a blurred, cloaked man with red glowing eyes with blue spiky flaming, hair…
Jason had a migraine.. bad timing for Simon as he crept behind Jason and put his iced tea to his neck. He bellowed throughout the whole house, with Simon snickering in the background!
The vision ended.
Jason felt his adrenaline boost to the highest point.
“That was not funny, Simon!! I was having a serious moment! Why would you do that?!”, shouted Jason.
“Oh come on, Jason! I was goofing around! Don’t be such a jerk!”, Simon shouted back.
Jason pushed him. “I’m no jerk!”. Simon pushed back and Jason flew back into the pale white concrete wall. Luckily, Jason was not hurt in any way.
Katherine was in the living room reading her book, and heard a loud BANG. “Oh no! Was that one of Eric’s experiments?!”
She dropped her book and ran into the TV room.
She met Eric as she entered the room.
They both heard Jason yell, “Simon, are you out of your mind?!”
Jason shoved Simon as he collapsed, making a mark on the hard floor.
The boys' hearts were pounding out of their chests, eyes were tearing up, they were breathing heavily and sweat dripped down due to exhaustion.
“What is going on here, boys?!”, shouted Katherine as she intervened.
“Simon pushed me while I was having a moment … oh no,” Jason explained.
“Jason, I thought your visions had stopped when you were 14!” said Katherine.
Jason stood there quietly..
“By the way Mom, Jason was being stupid.. he pushed me against the wall”, Simon countered.
"I didn't mean to. I was only having a vision!"
“You boys are both grounded for two weeks because of your fighting.. your mother and I are tired of it..”, Eric said .
“Two weeks?”, the boys protested.
“Well, there goes my chance to go to the 2nd annual Summer Fields festival with my friends tomorrow!”, Jason complained.
“Thats no way to talk to me, Jason!” said Katherine. “Maybe next year for the festival!”
“Why is this my fault?!” said Jason.
“Oh, you're not the only one being punished,” said his mom. “Simon, you’re grounded two weeks, and you have to help for a month with the extra chores for that ridiculous prank of yours!”
“Now go to your rooms, and think about what you've done,” their dad added.
They both stomped toward their rooms, with Simon leading the way.
“At least I don’t have extra chores..”, said Jason.
“Oh shut up”, Simon countered. “I don’t want to talk to you.”
They opened their bedroom doors and stared at each other across the hall.
“Best big brother in the world? Yeah. Right," said Jason disappointed.
They both slammed their doors.
Simon kicked his wall and left a white mark on his dark red wallpaper.
Jason jumped on his bed and covered his face with the pillow. He lifted his head to speak, “Why is he such a pain all the time? First, he scares me, and then he pushes me,” Jason said to the pillow.
“Why is he stronger than me..?.. why am I talking to a pillow?”
He rolled on his back, and at that moment, an idea occurred to him. “What if… I had… his strength, and his trickery…? Yeah! See how he likes it!!”
With all the excitement and fighting his eyes got heavy and he dozed off just for a moment.
Suddenly, he shot awake, “Hey! Dad made a potion to help Mom!….. I should sneak down to his lab tonight..... and drink it. Maybe not, Dad would be pissed at me! I can’t imagine how mad he would be! … Wait, what my dad won’t know.. won’t hurt right?? I’m going down.”
He looked up at his favourite poster of the Bee Gees.
“You’re right Barry, Robyn and Maurice. I’m staying alive”, Jason muttered.
It took forever for his parents to go to bed, so he waited patiently as the night grew darker and the moon started its rise.
Jason peaked one eye and looked at his clock.. 4:30 A.M. He shot out of bed quietly. “It’s time,” he whispered.
He walked toward his door, playing with the knob.. slowly, of course. Turning it back and fourth. It turned it all the way, and pulled the door open. He was surprised his door was not locked like with other groundings. He found it confusing and unusual, but he kept going.
The door opened slightly as Jason slipped through, and then closed it behind him. He snuck down the stairs without making a sound, and made his way through the house… Climbing down the basement stairs, Jason approached a vault door you would see in a bank, but thiner. Left of that was a pad of numbers.. he studied and stared at it. He figured he had to enter the passcode in order to go into the laboratory. He typed the code, which, coincidentally was the date of his parents anniversary. 01-24-77 … “It must be that one!” Jason thought.
Jason waited a few moments until he heard a THUNK.. he put both his hands on the door… and the next thing he knew, it opened.
“Do you think I don’t know the date of your own anniversary mom and dad?” he said to himself.
As Jason entered the laboratory, there was a big shelf of all different types of potions his dad made over the years.
Jason began to look for the recent potions. He could recall his father making a really powerful potion. He closed his eyes as he tried to remember which coloured vial was his father’s most powerful creation. The red liquid vial? The one that had a black string on it? Or was it..the one in mom’s old perfume bottle... no, wait! The glacier blue vial, thats it... with the shadow black liquid! He reached for the vial, his hand shaking and hot with sweat.....
“Come on Jason!” he thought. “Don’t be a chicken! Just do it!! You want to be like Simon, don’t you?!”
He grabbed the vial, twists off the lid, and began to drink… the taste… that flavour… it tasted like... a blend of his two favourite things, garlic aioli and pumpkin pie. The two flavour together did taste horrible! But then he began to feel weak and dizzy... he dropped the vial on the floor, as he started to lose his balance.
“Is this supposed to happen when you drink potions?” he thought.
The world started to spin really fast. Sweat was dripping from his forehead and he felt a sharp pain in his back. All his past visions returned in a faster pace, like it was his own life flashing before his eyes.
“Bad mistake, bad mistake, bad mistake..!”
Then... suddenly, everything was still... as though time had stopped. His heart racing, and a difficulty to breathe, Jason looks at his hands. Shaking and still feeling weak, he grabbed a chair and collapsed into it. As his head falls into his hands, his eyes focus on the floor to the empty vial, unbroken.
“What? Why didn’t that thing break? It sounded like it broke... Oh no! I hope I took... the right potion!”
Jason heard footsteps coming towards the lab. The light in the lab was very dim. Jason could see a shadowy figure under the lab door.
Jason was in big trouble.