In 2008, I again joined KTVN’s paranormal investigative team in Virginia City, Nevada, which is touted as one of the country’s most haunted cities. Our mission was to visit the decrepit Millionaire’s Club, perched atop the Old Washoe Club.

Elite decadence reigned here.

1875. A high-class brothel. Casino. The dark politics of power reigned as only the richest, most influential men could belong. The front of the club looked down upon C Street, the main thoroughfare. Its denizens had navigated the inner high-ceilinged, narrow-canyoned corridors leading to the private rooms: dark and suffocating with small, horizontally-latched windows hugging the crease where walls meet ceilings.

I imagine the summer nights of more than a century past: the small, inner windows pushed opened to the hallways, rarely drawing fresh air into the building’s bowels, but releasing the sounds of men in their pleasures.

We gained passage into the condemned club by making a donation. To the owner.

We entered through a nondescript metal door off the wooden boardwalk and climbed a narrow staircase to the second floor. In a square room to the right of the stairs, I gazed upward into a maw of darkness encircled by jagged wooden teeth from a gaping hole in the room above me.

We were told the third floor was the most active, so we prepared to climb the next flight. This precarious stairwell could only handle one person at a time. I grasped the banister. It wobbled like a stick shift in neutral. I didn’t dare touch it again.

Each time I moved, I braced myself for the inevitable sway of the steps away from the wall. At the midway point, I stopped and looked over to the top of the second floor hallway that was at eye level.

Don’t go toward the light.

An orb—baseball-sized and moon-bright—sped parallel to me along the corridor. It was a light so dense, I couldn’t see through it. It zipped away.

No window reflection could explain this globe. And flashlight beams aren’t spherical.

I shook my head and continued upward until I reached my peers who were already upstairs.

Moments later, someone yelled, “Shit!” Followed by frantic steps scrambling up the stairwell.

It was Bill Brown, our leader. His voice a bit shaky. “A ball of light ripped along the opposite wall. Suddenly, it veered straight toward my head. A ball of light coming straight at me. I’ve never been so scared.”

A validation of my experience. But why did the orb act differently toward me? Could it have been a former call girl angry at all men?