The Benson:Experiment in Terror 2.5(4)By: Karina Halle
I look at Dex beside me and see the camera is going, picking up everything Pam is saying. Sensing I’m staring at him, he reaches out and pushes me toward Pam, into the frame. I know he wants me to start acting like the host I am.
I smooth down my hair and clear my throat, stepping into the shot. “Have you seen any ghosts, Pam?”
She shakes her head quickly and looks wistful. “No, I haven’t. Come on, let’s go to the next floor.”
Not exactly the answer I was hoping for.
She scurries up the stairs and we follow, my short legs straining to keep up with her quick busybody motion.
We walk toward the elevators and as we are waiting she says, “I think you two are lucky because I’ve always wanted to see a ghost. I believe in them. So badly. But I’ve never seen one. Weird, right, considering that I run The Benson. At night.”
The elevator dings and the doors open. There’s a couple inside who eye the camera with trepidation, but we step inside with them anyway. Pam makes small talk with them as she pushes the button for the 8th floor and doesn’t mention ghosts again until the couple get out at the 5th floor.
She tilts her head at us. “I don’t like to discuss the ghosts around the guests though. People can be pretty strange about things like that.”
“I don’t blame them,” I find myself saying.
“I guess you’d know,” Pam says as the elevator stops at the floor, and she leads us out into the hallway, past a rotary phone resting on top of an antique table.
She notices me eyeing it and gives it a quick wave with her hand. Her bracelets jingle with the motion.
“We try to keep all the original furnishings from the hotel. Adds to the class and elegance of the place, don’t you think?”
I nod, not really needing to be sold on the hotel as a whole.
Pam takes us to the right, and we walk past the rooms down to the very end of the hall. Dex keeps filming, even though he takes his head away from the camera.
“So, if we show The Benson in a good way,” Dex says to Pam, “any chance we can score a free hotel room for the night? I’m staying at a roach motel outside of the city, and I’m getting itchy just thinking about it.”
Pam turns around briefly and smiles at him but then spins around and keeps walking without missing a beat.
“We’ll see. Would you two be sharing the room?”
Dex automatically grins and looks down at me as we walk. I shake my head, not amused.
“No, Perry snores and kicks in her sleep,” he says.
I smack him on the shoulder and the camera shakes.
“I do not!” I protest.
“Oh, and drools,” he adds quickly.
“So you two are a couple?” Pam asks, not looking at us this time but slowing down as she nears the end of the hall.
“Only in certain situations,” I mutter under my breath.
“No, we are not. Perry is far too good for me and I am forced to make do with my Wine Babe girlfriend.”
Finally Pam stops walking and looks at him. “Wine Babe? You’re with someone from that show?”
“You’ve seen it?” Dex asks, his eyes wide and hopeful.
“Yes,” she says slowly, and for once her chipper look is gone. Her cheeks sag a bit. “My ex boyfriend used to drool all over that skinny, exotic one.”
“Yeah, that’s his girlfriend. Jennifer Rodriguez,” I inform her. She eyes me and sees that I’m none too thrilled about it either. Nothing like a hot woman to make two chubby girls feel like they’re having a bonding moment.
“Well, I’m just glad some women watch it,” Dex says, turning his attention the camera, perhaps feeling the animosity and low self-esteem just reeking from our pores.
Pam laughs and the cheery façade returns. “Don’t be silly. I don’t watch that dreadful show. They pair shiraz with Kraft Dinner. Only an idiot would watch that. Like my ex-boyfriend.”
Dex opens his mouth to say something, but I know he completely agrees. That’s the reason he quit doing camera work on Wine Babes and started up Experiment in Terror with me instead.