St Andrew's Secrets
Isabel Curtis, Grade 10, Narangba Valley State High School
Finalist in the 'Beyond Words 2015' competition
The winter air chilled me to the bone; causing me to wrap my long coat tightly around my chest. The cold, musky air blew my long hair behind me as I stood at the bottom of the staircase of St Andrew’s Psychiatric Hospital. Staring at the large, wooden double doors, and occasionally looking back for cops, I walked up the decaying stairs and peered through the huge hole that pierced the double doors.
“Woah” I breathed, shining my torch around the main entrance, I stepped over the remains of the door and crunched down on some debris. The crunches echoed through the main room as I made my way to the desk. I turned the torch to the papers and started to shuffle through them.
“1819,” I mumbled. “Criminally insane. Needs death. John Foster.” I flicked through the documents and saw specks of dust flying upwards towards the light.
Suddenly, I heard something squeak. I shrugged it off as a rat until I felt debris lightly fall from above and hit me softly. I spun around and shone my light down the hall.
“Hello?” I called out. My eyes followed the beam and my feet reluctantly moved. I turned a corner and something or someone flashed out of the corner of my eye. I turned abruptly to try and catch whatever it was. Instead I was faced with a sign.
‘Mental Asylym.’ I backed away slowly until I felt the wall behind me.
Okay, that’s weird. I looked down the hall and saw a man with his back towards me. The man was dressed in old hospital clothes with his butt hanging out.
“Excuse me, sir? Are you okay?” I watched as the man rocked back and forth.
“It’s alright, Miss.” The man’s head turned around in a 360. “We are all mad here.” I dropped the flashlight and ran towards the doors again, but something changed. There was a lady at the desk and patients all around and the broken door was magically fixed somehow.
“What’s happening?” I shouted to myself, catching the attention of a doctor.
“It’s alright, ma’am. We are here to help you.” I slapped his gestured hand away and bolted to the fixed door. I pushed and pulled and realised it wouldn’t budge. I called out to my break in partner and watched him walk straight past me.
“Annabelle? Annabelle? Where are you?”
The doctor whispered in my ear that no one could hear me. I turned to him with a shocked expression then back to Dane. I walked up to him and touched his shoulder, except my hand went through his shoulder. I was....
'If you are reading this document, do not turn the corners of St Andrew’s Psychiatric Hospital and, soon enough, you will find out its secrets.’ Annabelle Peirce, Insisted crazy. Form of punishment, death. 16 of December 2015.