9C: Brandon Mazurski.
Move-in date: 8/24/2009
Move-out date: 1/29/2010
I wasn’t scheduled to work in the staff office until Friday, when I typically had the afternoon free of classes. The office work at Hynes Hall was pretty boring; it mostly consisted of answering the phone and processing invoices from utility companies to submit to Commonwealth’s finance office. As a student administrator, rifling through dormitory residency records and student profiles wasn’t really part of my responsibilities. The files weren’t off limits, exactly. When there was a huge blow-up between two female roommates on the fourth floor during the first week of school, Flynn had asked me to pull their files so that he could begin the process of transferring one of them to Endicott Hall. But still, when my curiosity got the better of me fifteen minutes before my shift ended at six, and I connected to the university’s residence database, my heart began beating a little faster.
Brandon Mazurski’s record in the database matched Leigh Anne’s story. He moved out of Hynes Hall just a week into the second semester of his freshman year with no explanation given. I nervously checked over my left shoulder to see if anyone in the office was watching me as I let my computer mouse hover over the link to view the residency history of the room. Mr. Flynn was on the phone with the laundry repair guys, as usual. There was a problem with one of the dryers; the lint trap was loose and had been causing problems all semester. The other student who was working the shift with me, Ashley, was brazenly doing her homework at the other desk.
Semester after semester, listed in reverse chronological order, the names of Room 9C’s past residents loaded on the computer screen. Hailey Warwick’s name appeared at the top alongside her move-in date of August 25, 2014. The service order I had requested last night was the only one filed during her time so far in the room. The resident who had been assigned to 9C the previous year, who according to Mason had moved out in the middle of the winter, was a guy by the name of Nicholas Tabari. His record suggested he had moved in at the beginning of fall semester and remained in the room until the end of spring semester, although I guessed if what Mason had said about him moving in with his girlfriend at Lynn had been true, his record wouldn’t have indicated an informal move-out. There were six service requests filed by Nicholas during his fall semester about dripping faucets, clanging coming from the radiator, a window that kept opening on its own, and an overhead light that seemed to turn itself off.
I shuddered. Dripping faucets and a clanging radiator in an old building with steam heat were normal service requests, but the windows and light switches moving on their own? Not normal. There were no service requests filed during the spring semester, which certainly seemed to suggest that perhaps Nicholas had simply given up on the room and moved himself out, just like Mason had said.
As I clicked further back through the room’s history, it began to feel like the office around me was spinning. The year before Nicholas Tabari lived in 9C, a girl named Amanda Hanover moved in at the start of fall semester. She filed two service requests about the dripping in the bathroom, and a third about a noise that she only heard when she stood in the doorway between the main area of her room and the bathroom. The noise sounded, in the words she had printed on the service request form, like heavy breathing. Amanda moved out in mid-November, and a student who had been fighting with a roommate in Endicott was moved in. That girl, Ellen Carlyle, filed similar service reports until she moved out in April… a month and a half before the end of the semester. Presumably the room remained empty until the next fall.
What the… I was aware that my breathing had grown so ragged that I was practically panting, but I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.
Year after year, the service reports all detailed complaints about similar strange occurrences in the room. Windows winding themselves open. Lights turning on and off. The sound of heavy breathing. The faucets dripping endlessly. Then, in the early Nineties, there appeared to be a five-year gap in students living in that room. The last student to occupy the room before the five-year pause was named Stephen Clayton. He checked in on August 29, 1994 and according to the records, never checked out.
YOU ARE READING
It’s the middle of fall semester at Commonwealth University, and Cara Oliver is the resident assistant on the ninth floor of the Hynes Hall dormitory. Being an RA means she’s exempt from paying for her private room. Better yet, she earns a stipend i...