Prince Prospero's solution to the red death is to run, hide, and ignore. He decides to take one thousand friends and lock them away in one of his fortified abbeys. This "castellated abbey" was surrounded by "a strong and lofty wall" with "iron gates." Once inside, the occupants, including Prospero, seal up the doors and weld them shut.
Inside, the structure had everything one could dream of, from food to entertainment. It seems Prospero felt if he locked himself away from the outside world, the red death could not get to him. From this moment forward, he chooses to pretend he is safe and that the red death does not exist.
However, this tactic does not work. One night during a festive ball, the crowd sees a masked figure walking through the colorful rooms. No one is able to recall where this person came from, and the sight of the mask, which looks eerily like the corpse of a plague victim, brings terror to the guests. At the end of the tale, it's revealed that this masked person is, in fact, the embodiment of the red death. One by one, the guests succumb to the disease and die.
Poe uses symbolism to convey Prospero's solutions. He uses the fortified palace to physically remove himself from the disease, believing that this barrier can protect him from death. He then uses the extravagant parties as a way to distract and avoid the reality at hand. However, the clock striking midnight reminds Prospero, his guests, and the reader that no one can run, hide, or avoid death.