There is something about the rush of adrenaline, the chasing of the rising anxiety, that entices many. Upon discovery, it can be a bit strange, but not knowing what the future holds or what may be hiding in the dark corner of an empty room is exciting. It was this allure for the feeling of adrenaline — the pounding of the heart and blood that flows to your fingertips — that drew me to The Nevermore Haunt. Additionally, I needed a release from the feeling of dread that washed over me from the chemistry test I’d had the previous day.
Nevermore was not my first haunted house. Back in my hometown in South Carolina, I visited Myrtle Beach, where there was a strip of activities to do, like visiting the Hollywood Wax Museum, riding on the SkyWheel, or riding go-karts. Out of all the options, my family decided to go to a haunted house, initially thinking it would be a fun experience and less frightening than others had described. We were indeed wrong about the latter.
From what I remember, the haunted house utilized mechanical devices that resembled faces, deconstructed to the bare muscles and vessels and long, thin hands with sharp fingernails that pricked when they touched you. These faces and hands lined a narrow hallway and left no space for one to hide in, so they touched you wherever you went. Choosing to be brave, I ran through the hallway and finally made it to the other side. That’s when I discovered that my bag had been grabbed by the mechanical hand and was now in the middle of the hallway, being swung back and forth. I fell to the floor and cried that I had to go back and hoped that someone would help me out. No one volunteered. So, I was forced to re-enter the dangerous zone and retrieve my bag. Despite all the fear that we went through, my siblings and I agreed that it was a fun experience we should do again.
While the time I spent at The Nevermore Haunt will never get to the level of scary I experienced back at Myrtle Beach, it was still an enjoyable time. The actors at The Nevermore were professional, making sure to interact with us and scare us. One instance of this was when an actor noticed the fear on my friend’s crying face and told her to lead the group through the house instead of hiding. This made the experience much more terrifying since her exaggerated reactions to everything made us all the more alert to even a block of stone with an outline of a face. They knew how to increase our anxiety by targeting each of us individually. Dressed actors would make sure to “roar” in each of our faces, first popping up out of dark corners with white-painted faces and a propensity for getting close to us.
My favorite part of the haunted house was the dark hallway with a short man in a black suit that stood stagnant in the divet of the hallway, so we were unable to see him until we passed by him. He said nothing but simply stared at us, but because the room was so dark, it was frightening when we spotted him. There was also a room that resembled the Texas Chainsaw Massacre — although it’s modeled after the Maryland Murder — so any fans of that horror movie will have fun with that. The “Maryland Murderer” holds a knife in his hand and yells at you as you try to quickly pass through the room, threatening you with ending up as one of his victims.
The only instance from the house where I remember my anxiety rising to the level back at home was walking through a dark hallway (there were so many there) and something huge reaching out to grab me. It was not human but just two huge blocks of wood that were painted to resemble a dragon and made a “woosh” sound whenever it moved. Encountering something inhuman for the first time was more frightening than anything else, and when it touched me, I let out a high-pitched scream that burst the eardrum of the person in front of me. At that moment, I thought that my heart was going to explode, but immediately after, I was grateful for the rush and was excited for the rest to come.
I am thrilled that I decided to go that weekend and was able to re-experience the rush that had hung like a silent whisper in the back of my mind. The authenticity of the haunted house added to this rush and increased my level of fright and, subsequently, my level of enjoyment. So, if you’re looking for a fun time, maybe next Halloween or anytime during the year, visit The Nevermore Haunt. I’m sure it’ll be a fright to behold.