Many years ago, a young woman named Dale Hoover was very active on GEnie, and she and I were friends -- usually, anyway. We were both members of HWA, as well.
At one point she set out to put together a horror anthology, and asked me for a story. I didn't have much time at that point, so I dashed off a very quick short-short. That was "Upstairs."
When I say it was short, well -- I think this page about it is longer than the story.
But then her anthology never got off the ground, and I put the story aside, because it wasn't worth trying to sell anything so short.
Until one day Bob Weinberg said that he and Stefan Dziemianowicz and Marty Greenberg were putting together an "instant remainder" for Barnes & Noble, featuring a horror short for every day of the year. Which meant they needed 365 very short stories, and because of the schedule they needed them fast.
So I sent them "Upstairs," and they bought it, because hey, with 365 slots to fill, how picky can you afford to be?
So you can read it in Horrors! 365 Scary Stories, edited by Stefan Dziemianowicz, Robert Weinberg, and Martin H. Greenberg, published Barnes & Noble in 1998.
To my astonishment, it was also reprinted in the tenth annual The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror.
Thus encouraged, I included it in my own collection, Hazmat & Other Toxic Stories.
That's it; here's your list of handy exits: