Does anyone recognize this short story??


When I was maybe 12 I read a short story that struck me, but I can't remember the author or the title. I've looked into the works of every author I can think of that fits the genre & that I would've read, but no luck. The story is described below– can anyone tell me who wrote it and/or what it's called?

The narrator hears about a room, one of those "you can't find it unless you know where it is" sort of places. In a major European city I think, probably set in the 1800s-ish. Anyway it's a place you can go to trade your problems with other people. Very mysterious and spooky. As an example, he describes a woman doesn't want her children trading that problem with a woman who desperately wants children but can't get pregnant.

So the narrator finds out where this place is and goes and decides to offer a minor issue of his just to see, without risking anything major. He barters a fear of something minor, maybe like boat travel or something? With a fear of lifts (I think). The transaction goes through and then he can never find the place again.

He describes feeling unchanged and sort of forgot about the whole thing, but then tells of a time he had to get on a lift and absolutely froze up in terror when it never used to bother him.

That's all it is that's as best as I can remember but this has been haunting me for nearly a decade so please help if you can thanks a mil

Source: reddit post


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