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Royer’s Madcap Experiences: The Low Moan From Room 3

September 26, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments
Ric Royer

Ric Royer

In my early twenties, I leased an apartment on the top floor of a rambling boarding house located at the terminus of a filthy alley. The landlady was an ancient, distant, stooped creature that never looked one in the eye and always carried a series of three colored dishtowels wherever she went. It was seldom she made the journey to my top floor and this pleased me and thus, generally I was left alone.

At the time, I was working on a long novel about some gorillas on the moon that had special powers. I vacillated between feeling it to be a work of unparalleled genius or complete idiocy. As the work progressed, I kept adding further gorillas. Towards the end of my work, I added a band of singing gorilla children out of desperation. Then, I scrapped it completely– burning it in the wood stove.

It was about this time that I began to hear a low moan from next door. This surprised me; I had believed myself alone here in the heights of this great, languishing flophouse.

The next day, I confronted the landlady. She was pushing a small, filthy carpet into a cookie jar for reasons unclear to me. “Who is the man in Room 3?” I asked. “He moans constantly”. She looked forward, her lips slightly parted. “Big Ed,” she answered in a whisper. “Been here for 13 years. He owns a Barbeque.”

She looked down to the unwashed parquet floor.

“No one knows what goes on there.”

I had heard of the place. It was two blocks from here and although one could safely enter the establishment and purchase a perfectly good barbeque sandwich, one never asked any questions about what went on upstairs. There were four long ventilation ducts that meandered from the windows upstairs and sunk straight into the ground and it was rumored that the racket of mysterious items slamming against their sides could be heard throughout the night. Big Ed himself was invisible.

Royer suddenly became distracted by a giant, swirly lollipop and promised to finish the story later.

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