A select group of intrepid theatre goers met on a December evening prepared to enter the more secluded of the Wimbledon theatres.
The companions mounted the stairs and waited outside the auditorium for the last member of the group to join them. While waiting on the landing they were shaken by ghastly screaming and shouts emanating from behind the closed doors, then bells shook the air and there was much to-ing and fro-ing. After some minutes calm was restored and the ticket seller assured us all was well.
Nearly time to take our seat and our missing member, Mr Bell, had not appeared. A search party descended the stairs but he was nowhere to be seen. There was nothing for it, we had to go in.
We entered the theatre to find it disguised as an hostelry, which we passed through to find a bar at which we were able to purchase some refreshments.
The bell sounded and we had to take our seats. The hostelry was now occupied by a barmaid and four customers. It was the night before Christmas and the inclement weather had forced the company to remain in the inn.
To pass the time they began to recount spine chilling tales.
After several tales were told a need was felt for a pause, and a chance to imbibe some refreshments.
We returned to the scene in the inn only to find that another traveller had joined the assembled story tellers. His tale was even more astounding, but the final story with its severed hand, and severed head, sent us into the night glad to return to normality.
But what of the missing member? He had indeed arrived at the theatre, but he had entered the main theatre. Nevertheless he did request a ticket for Mr Bell, left by a Mrs Hart, and such a ticket was duly produced, not one but two.
He took his place, he searched the audience for his missing companions as we had searched for him. We searching one auditorium, he another!
He resigned himself to an unaccompanied evening, though he was somewhat surprised at the notion of Peter pan being a ghost story!
The other ticket? No-one came to claim the seat. Who was the missing patron? Who had left the ticket in the wrong theatre? Had Mr Bell had a lucky escape?
Was there a ghost story we had all missed?