Room for One More
by Alvin Schwartz
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A man named Joseph Blackwell came to Philadelphia on a business trip. He stayed with friends in the big house they owned outside the city. That night they had a good time visiting. But when Blackwell went to bed, he tossed and turned and couldn’t sleep. Sometime during the night he heard a car turn into the driveway. He went to the window to see who was arriving at such a late hour. In the moonlight, he saw a long black hearse filled with people.
The driver of the hearse looked up at him. When Blackwell saw his weird, hideous face, he shuddered. The driver called to him, «There is room for one more.» Then he waited for a minute or two, and then he drove off.
In the morning Blackwell told his friends what had happened. «You were dreaming,» they said.
«I must have been,» he said,» but it didn’t seem like a dream.»
After breakfast, he went into Philadelphia. He spent the day high above the city in one of the new office buildings there.
Late in the afternoon he was waiting for an elevator to take him back down to the street. But when it arrived, it was very crowded. One of the passengers looked out and called to him. «There is room for one more,» he said. It was the driver of the hearse.
«No thanks,» Blackwell said. «I’ll get the next one.»
The doors closed, and the elevator started down. There was a shrieking and screaming, then the sound of a crash. The elevator had fallen to the bottom of the shaft. Everyone aboard was killed.
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