In all my time here at Apparent Progress, and with all the things I’ve seen, it may be the one thing that I haven’t seen that bothers me the most. That thing, it turns out, is the Thirteenth Floor. Yes, yes, I know, the number 13 is supposed to be all witchcrafty and weird and scary and all that other stuff. I choose to believe that it’s only a coincidence. You can believe whatever you want. All I know is that I have tried, repeatedly, to get onto the Thirteenth Floor and have yet to succeed.
It is there. I know that it is there. The Apparent Progress Central Tower is 29 stories high. The floors are listed on a sign in the lobby – 29 floors. You can stand on the street, look up and count 29 floors. So it’s there. I can see the windows for that floor from outside. But on the lobby sign, there is no department listed for Floor 13. It’s merely blank. The elevators have no button for 13 – they simply go from 12 to 14. I have climbed the stairs, only to find a blank wall where the door to floor 13 should be.
It’s easy to dismiss, I suppose, if you consider that some architects are superstitious and leave out the 13th floor. It could be assumed that while the building had a thirteenth floor built, it was later sealed off and never used. That’s possible. But I’ve seen people at the windows. I’ve seen lights go on and later turn off on the floor. The floor is in use. By someone.
What I have never seen is a piece of mail come through my department for someone on floor 13. No one I ask seems to realize there is a floor 13. I’m beginning to think I may be the only person here, other than the mysterious denizens of Floor 13, who is aware of it at all.
I don’t know why, but this has become the most important thing to me right now. I lay in bed at night thinking about it. I have drawn up my own sketches and diagrams and schematics based on what I know of the building and its layout. The only relief I see is finally finding my way on there.
So, this is my stated goal now. I am going to find a way onto Floor 13. I will figure out who is on that floor, and why, and what reason they have for making access so difficult. Because if I don’t, I may wind up as crazy as everyone else here seems to be.