Someone Dies In This Elevator is a spoiler-driven anthology podcast. We hope you enjoy this episode. It’s Halloween night, and you agreed to explore an abandoned amusement park with your friends, in Ride of A Lifetime.
This episode contains coercion, possession, ghosts, and death in an elevator. It is written in second person, and the character who is possessed is you.
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AlliMaria Dauphine (she/they) as Mel
Josh Rubino (he/him) as The Ghost of You
Leslie Gideon (she/her) as Annie
John Y. Kamara (he/him) as Sam
Tal Minear (they/them) as The Narrator (and voice of the intro and outro, as always).
Written and Directed by Tal Minear (they/them).
Script editing by Jesse Schuschu (they/he).
Dialogue Editing, Sound Design, Scoring, and Mastering by Tal Minear (they/them).
Executive Produced by Colin J Kelly (he/him) and Tal Minear (they/them).
Artwork by Tal Minear (they/them).
Marketing by Ali Fuller (they/them)
Someone Dies In This Elevator Series Trailer is their Collective Work under Sound Escape Productions, a profit-sharing podcast collective.
Please support Audio Fiction Creators so they can continue making content and telling stories.
Transcript for Ride of a Lifetime as follows:
(OUTSIDE THE GATES OF AN OLD AMUSEMENT PARK ON A RELATIVELY QUIET NIGHT, Four pairs of footsteps on grass or gravel walk up.)
SAM: We made it!
ANNIE: I’m not so sure about this…
MEL: Annie, you promised!
ANNIE: I know I did, but, ugh, do we really need to come here?
MEL: The gate isn’t even locked. Hell, it isn’t even fully closed. Look.
NARRATOR: It’s Halloween night, and you agreed to explore an abandoned amusement park with your friends.
(The gate squeaks open.)
SAM: Aw, I wanted to jump the fence.
MEL: Well technically you could still do that, Sam. Nobody’s stopping you.
ANNIE: No, let’s just… walk in and get this over with.
NARRATOR: It’s as easy as Mel promised it would be. The gate is open, and the four of you can walk right in.
(Under the narration are footsteps on gravel and a hand sliding across the railing.)
ANNIE: Well, we’re here. Yay. Where are we going?
MEL: I really want to explore the old roller coaster! People say it’s haunted.
SAM: I want to check out the big restaurant. They had all these huge decorations and stuff, and I’ve heard they’re all still up.
SAM: It’s not like the coaster is going to move! You just wanna look at some metal tracks. At least the restaurant has, like, interior design!
ANNIE: They said it was haunted! I don’t know, the restaurant seems safer…
MEL: Let’s split up then. You two go check out your lame restaurant, and we’ll head down the lot to the coaster.
ANNIE: Should we really split up? What if something happens?
SAM: It’ll be fine! We’ve got signal right? Just text when you’re done, and we’ll do the same. Bet you get bored before us though!
NARRATOR: And so you find yourself walking towards the roller coaster with Mel. It does sound better than a old restaurant.
(Under the narration, footsteps.)
MEL: Wow, our friends are boring. I can’t believe Sam came all this way to explore a diner. Thank god you came along, or I’d be doing this alone. Hey look, there it is!
NARRATOR: The roller coaster starts inside of a large warehouse. The line to the entrance is easy to follow, so you and Mel head that way.
(Footsteps on concrete as you both approach.)
MEL: Wow, they sure had some really long lines back in the day, huh?
NARRATOR: The entrance to the coaster is a queue that zig zags back and forth. It’s clear that people used to wait hours to go on this ride, but you and Mel make it inside in just under a minute.
(The environmental ambiance shifts from a quiet night to inside a large warehouse. It’s quiet in here, as no machines are running – but sounds echo.)
MEL: Woah! I thought it would be dark in here, but look – there’s a light over there.
(Mel walks forward. Another light turns on.)
MEL: How does this place still have electricity?
(Mel keeps going, walking faster. Your footsteps follow. They continue under the narration.)
NARRATOR: The lights lead the two of you around the core and into an employees-only section of the ride. Looking up, you see the control tower, situated one floor up, overlooking the tracks. It almost seems as if there’s a faint hum coming from it, but Mel doesn’t seem to notice. You’re not too concerned – it’s probably just the lights, or maybe the generator for them.
MEL: The control tower! I’ve never been in one before, we gotta check it out.
A clanging noise rings out from down the tracks.
MEL: And let’s… avoid whatever that was. Maybe this place really is haunted.
NARRATOR: There aren’t any stairs in sight, but there is an elevator. The metal doors are dirty, but they don’t look rusted shut or anything.
MEL: If this place has power… think the elevator might work? There’s one way to find out!
Mel walks a few steps to the elevator, and presses the button. Immediately, elevator doors open with a chime.
NARRATOR: It’s like the elevator was waiting for you. The inside glows a warm, inviting orange, and the two of you step in.
(A few steps.)
MEL: (muttered) Who is paying the bill for this place? (To you) Maybe it’s the ghosts, huh?
(The doors close, faster than they should.)
NARRATOR: As soon as the doors close, the overhead light flickers off. But it’s not completely dark in this elevator – four buttons glow bright.
MEL: Spooky! (they laugh, delighted) Weird that these buttons aren’t numbered. T, G, B… and the call button? Huh. G is probably.. ground? That would make sense. Think T stands for tower? [BEAT] If only there was an L.
NARRATOR: If T is tower, B is probably basement? You didn’t know roller coasters had basements. But that call button… Would anyone answer if you pressed it? Overcome with curiosity, you can’t help but find out.
MEL: Wait, why did you press the call button?
(You drop the ground with a thud.)
MEL: (in reaction to your fall) Hey! You okay?
NARRATOR: You hit the ground before Mel finishes their sentence. They rush to check your pulse, but before they can get the right grip on your wrist to do it, you’re already getting back up. Without a thought, you brush yourself off and speak.
GHOST: You called?
NARRATOR: (hesitant) That’s not what you were going to say.
MEL: (confused) Wh- what?
GHOST: I said… you called?
NARRATOR: Why did you ask it again?
MEL: I- I… what? Why are your eyes glowing? Wh- wo are you?
GHOST: A better question. I am the spirit of this park. The ghost of what this place used to be.
(The elevator creaks into motion.)
GHOST: We are in desperate need of visitors – and thus, I thank you and your companion for coming here. Do please pass on my apologies for borrowing them in this way.
MEL: I- uh… don’t understand.
NARRATOR: You don’t understand either, but you’re starting to. Things make more sense as you- or rather, the ghost, explains it to Mel.
(The elevator continues.)
GHOST: I have found a solution to our lack of visitors, a way to work around what ties us to this plane. We are kept here at this park… but not for long. Soon I will give my fellow ghosts their freedom.
(The elevator stops, but does not open its doors.)
MEL: How about you give me my friend back?
GHOST: How about you follow me?
NARRATOR: The elevator doors open. Your footsteps lead the way out to the control tower, and reluctant footsteps from Mel follow. You’ve made it to the control tower. It’s dimly lit, but with a flourish of your hand the lights brighten. A flourish you did not mean to make. But… maybe you did.
(Under the narration we hear the doors open, and then footsteps. The control tower is a smaller, separate room within the warehouse, and sounds do not echo as much. There is a faint hum here, reminiscent of a florescent light. When the lights brighten, the noise gets louder.)
MEL: The lights were you?
GHOST: Most of what happens here is me. This is, after all, my home. [BEAT] But not for long.
NARRATOR: The knowledge seeps into you. You’ve been trying to escape this park for years now, trapped by the same forces keeping your consciousness alive. You’ve waited over a decade for a chance to get out. But finally, these two humans have arrived to be your path out of here. One is the vessel to leave in. The other, confused friend of your vessel, will provide the power to break the curse that traps you here.
GHOST: I’ve been trying to escape this park for years now, years now, years now.
I’ve waited over a decade for a chance to get out, but finally, finally, finally, these two humans have arrived.
(One is my vessel to leave in. The other, poor confused friend of my vessel, will provide the power to break the curse that traps me here.)
MEL: (scared) What are you going to do?
GHOST: I’m going to go.
MEL: Are you taking my friend with you?
GHOST: Silly- I am them. There’s nobody to take with me. There’s just me.
NARRATOR: You walk up to the array of buttons in the control tower, and looking through the windows above them, you see your friends. Your friends? These two humans aren’t your friends. They’re near the entrance, but getting closer, worried expressions becoming clear in the dim lighting.
ANNIE: (distant) Hello? Where are you guys? Is everything okay?
SAM: (distant) Mel, why aren’t you replying to my texts?
GHOST (to self) Oh, this changes things….
MEL: What? (yelling to Sam and Annie) GO AWAY! IT’S NOT SAFE HERE!
ANNIE: (distant) Was that Mel?
SAM: (calling out, still distant) Mel? Are you here?
GHOST: There is power in death. It is what trapped me here on this ride, and it is the only thing that can free me. And isn’t this just convenient?
NARRATOR: You had planned only to leave one ghost in your place, one soul paying the price to free everyone. But three? That spell is far more powerful. As the two humans below walk along the tracks, a plan forms.
NARRATOR, IN BACKGROUND: No. No! NO!
MEL: Leave them alone! Please! Don’t hurt them!
GHOST: Are you volunteering to do it for me?
NARRATOR: You ready the magic needed to compel this human… your friend? No. This human, to push the necessary button on the control tower. The button that will bring a coaster car down on Annie and Sam. The button you need to be free.
MEL: (strained) What. Are. You. DOING-
(Mel takes a few reluctant steps toward the button panel.)
GHOST: Old rules, sorry – someone else must free me. I can’t start this, but nothing says I can’t give someone else a little push. Love a loophole.
NARRATOR: You feel your magic pushing the human towards the control panel. Soon the humans will die, but their deaths will free you. Their deaths will free the ghosts. The ghost is you… but the ghost is not you. You have the energy for one last thing.
NARRATOR, IN BACKGROUND: Those are your friends! They’ll die! No! NO! The Ghost is not you!
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: Stop.
(Mel’s few reluctant steps stop.)
NARRATOR: You walk away from the windows, to the elevator. With a flick of your hand, the doors open – but the elevator is below. There’s only the shaft.
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: Mel?
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: I’m going to kill Sam and Annie. That’s what’s about to happen.
GHOST: No, Mel, you are going to kill them for me.
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: Either way they are dying.
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: Listen, I’ve only got a minute. I can’t- I can’t do this much longer. We can save them.
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: Push me.
MEL: What? No, I’m not going to-
GHOST: Then don’t do it.
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: You have to do it!
MEL: I can’t kill you! You’re my best friend!
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: Then Sam and Annie are going to die. Probably you too.
GHOST: How about I don’t kill you? Just the others. Two is enough to escape with this body and never bother you again.
MEL: In this body?
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: I’m screwed anyway! You see? I’m gonna become this ghost! I’m already the ghost! But we can end this. Push me. Before I fade, push me!
MEL: I don’t want to do this!
GHOST BUT IT’S YOU: PUSH ME!
NARRATOR: Magic surges behind your words. Mel takes a few confident steps forward and gives you a push. You try to hold onto the doorway, but it’s not enough. You fall.
MEL: (noise of push) GHOST: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
NARRATOR: You sacrifice yourself, saving your friends. Saving everyone who would come after them. You’ve stopped your own plan in it’s tracks, but you won’t be around to appreciate that.
(A body hitting the top of an elevator at the bottom of an elevator shaft. There is a loud, echoing clang.)
NARRATOR: You die in this elevator.