The Building People Jumped From

When I worked for a small advertising company, the building we worked in was rather tiny but brand new. I think the building wasn’t even older than five years when we started using it as our office.

The place we worked in before that was a dump. There was no air conditioning in summer, and in winter a cold breeze constantly blew in through the gaps, making it difficult to work. Every time we went to visit a client we were jealous of their nice offices, clean toilets, cool air conditioners, and even their elevators. But, our company was small, and the workplace felt like family, so we told the boss directly how we felt. Around the same time, he was already thinking of expanding the company due to an increase of work, so he started to think about moving us to a new office.

We started looking for a new office in autumn. Thankfully it wasn’t the busy season, so we soon received contact that they’d found a place that was just what we were looking for, and the boss himself went to check it out.

It was a little small, considering that we were expanding, but the building was new and location convenient, which made it ideal. The price the real estate showed him was reasonable and within the company’s budget, so apparently talks proceeded smoothly. Even as they spoke about the particulars of the building, nothing seemed to stick out as strange. But there was one point in particular that had caught his attention; the real estate complained about the office’s previous tenant.

Apparently, the previous tenant attempted to do a runner, pleading with the real estate to break their contract before leaving. When they were moving, they seemed to only have a minimal amount of goods with them, and the move itself was a mess.

The real estate spoke of all this as negotiations for our company’s contract were nearly in place, their tongues loosening and laughing about their previous troubles perhaps because the deal was practically done. Wishing to know more, the boss questioned them on whether there was something he should know about the building, but they denied it with a swift familiarity that suggested it wasn’t the first time they’d had to.

Still, there were no strange stories surrounding the building, and they’d already purified the office space while it was free of tenants. Just in case. The boss had no interest in the supernatural, but if it was one of those “accident buildings” where something bad had taken place in the past, he planned to argue for a cheaper price. In the end, he was so taken with the building that he didn’t care and went ahead with the move.

We’re a small company, so we made plans for the move around New Year, and we were able to move everything over and get back to work before the start of the busy season. The facilities were new and pristine, it was easy to access and even cut down on commute time, so the rest of us workers were over the moon.

Around spring, the worker sitting across from my, by the window, had started to change, bit by bit. It was a 12 story building, and our office was located on the seventh floor. The windows were rather large and let in a lot of sunlight, meaning it was easy to feel sleepy under the sun’s warmth. At first, I thought he was just napping, although he’d suddenly jerk at times. But looking closer, it didn’t appear that he was napping, and afterwards, he would always stand by the window and look at the ground below.

I paid closer attention to him, intrigued by what was happening, and noticed he only did this on sunny days. The jerks were becoming increasingly more frequent as well.

Our first autumn in the new office we had a string of pleasant, sunny days. My colleague stood by the window every day, looking outside. Although he’d been hired for his high success rate, he started making more and more mistakes, and his health seemed to be failing. People started to complain, so I invited both the colleague and our boss to go out for drinks one night so we could get to the bottom of what was troubling him.

Apparently, on sunny days, this colleague could see tiny people jumping from the window, over and over. At first, he thought they were just bugs, but the more he looked, the more he realised it looked like a person, and each time he saw this person, he realised they were getting bigger. By summer, this person was large enough for him to see their clothes and even tell their gender, and recently, he’d been able to see the expressions on their face as well.

It was a man, but he only seemed to fall around lunchtime on sunny days. The particular time was never the same, and although he distinctly saw the man’s face, he couldn’t picture it clearly in his head. The jerks I’d seen him do, when I thought he was jerking away, was my colleague realising that he’d seen the man again, and he always stood by the window looking down because he was trying to see where this man was.

The story was completely unbelievable, but when compared with his haggardness, and the strangeness of the previous company who had quickly broken their contract and fled, the boss believed him. Unwilling to lose a precious worker, the boss decided that we should move offices again, and arrangements were made.

We still don’t know who or what that man my colleague saw was. It wasn’t like people used the building to commit suicide, and nobody other than that colleague ever saw him. After we moved to a new office, his health returned and everything went back to normal.

I wonder if that man is still jumping from that building on sunny days even now…?

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