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Author Topic: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?  (Read 332 times)

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Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« on: October 01, 2019, 05:03:42 AM »
Ahhh...!  The sweet scent of freshly shucked corn whirls in the breeze.  Cider slides along our tongues.  Chill nights are made warm through laughter and song.  The growing season has been long, and the work has been hard, but the wait has been worth it.  Yes!  Yes!  Harvest Time has come once more.  Let us rejoice!

Of course, the Time of Taking is for others the Time of Giving -- whether they wish to give or not.  To the apple tree, Harvest Time represents the moment that her fruit will be stolen away from her.  To the pumpkin, Harvest Time represents the moment that he will be eviscerated, disfigured, and put on display.  To the turkey, Harvest Time represents the moment that she will be decapitated, plucked, roasted, and devoured.  For some to gain, others must lose; celebration and mourning always walk hand-in-hand.

If this sounds unjust, we can find consolation in the fact that Fortuna never stops spinning her wheel.  Though we stand before the altar tonight, tomorrow we shall lie across it.  Yes, the bargain is often hard, but it is always fair.  Worms have their Harvest Time, too.

But tonight we lift our mugs.  Tonight we sing our songs.  I hope that I can persuade you to share some spooky stories, too.  For a few years we here at Elliquiy engaged in a round of hyakumonogatari kaidankai, the ancient Japanese tradition where people tell stories amid one hundred candles, extinguishing them as they go.  That went just about as well as we could have hoped, so we began a round of de duizenderotischeprikkennacht, the ancient Dutch tradition where people gather together to tell one thousand spooky stories.  When that one-thousandth story is concluded, we will experience a wonderful and strange visitation from the Otherworld.

So they say.

If you have a spooky story to offer, please post it in this thread.  It might have happened to you; it might have happened to someone else.  It can be short or long, simple or complex.  It can be completely true or perhaps slightly less than completely true -- I mean, we can't expect you to always tell the exact truth, like in every tiny syllable or whatever, can we? -- I mean, if you basically tell it, that should be "true enough," right?  Ghost stories, urban legends, bloodcurdling parables, and tales of woe are all most welcome.  Stories can be creepy, gory, creepy -- heck, even funny or creepy.  I would be delighted if you were to tell multiple stories, although I do ask that you include only one story per post.  Finally, please give credit where credit is due.  Editing or tweaking a source is perfectly acceptable.  Your own stories are not only permitted but preferred...

Will you leave us in stitches?  Will you send a shiver down our spine?  Will you send a tingler down our spine?  Will we find ourselves tangled in your terrifying yarns and end up bouncing off of the walls of Arkham Asylum?  Harvest Time will tell...

During Harvest Time we collect what we want and need.  Farmers collect grain, fruits, vegetables.  We here in this thread are collecting stories.  And there is one particularly infamous collector who collects... well, us.  Let's hear about an encounter with him, shall we?


The Grim Reaper

In April of 2014, I was briefly hospitalized somewhere I had never been to before (I get sick a lot).  It was a small hospital, only 3 floors and, for the first few days, things seemed normal.  The staff was nice but they were all sort of bleak and dismal and, although it was lit, the whole unit had a strange darkness to it, a heaviness.  A few nurses even commented on how they weren't used to patients like me, patients with a little life in them still -- every other patient was old and frail.

A few days in, a new roommate was brought in -- she was elderly and she was terminally ill.  We never spoke because she was always completely out of it but then something odd happened.

In the early morning hours of the day I was to be discharged (around 3:00 am) I was awakened by a voice in my room.  It was a woman's voice but I couldn't make out what she was saying.  I opened my eyes but there was no one in the room, just me and my roommate, who was incoherent the entire time we shared our room.  Assuming it was a nurse in the hall, I tried falling back asleep.  Suddenly, there was a loud, frantic voice shouting, "NO, NO YOU CANT TAKE ME!  I WONT GO!".  I opened open my eyes again and the room was much, much darker and my roommate was sitting straight up in her bed, screaming with complete and utter conviction towards the foot of her bed, almost like a child objecting to bed time.  She crying, still sitting straight up, looking at something, listening very intently for what seemed like forever.  She began to whisper "yes" and "no" between whimpers and then she laid back down and I watched the darkness leave the room.  I really didn't think much of it, after all -- I was in a hospital, I was heavily medicated and, it was 3 am.

The next day, around 12:00, I was in my room, showered, packed and ready to go.  The nurses were still doing my discharge paperwork so I was having lunch, watching tv....rearing to get out of there.  My neighbor had her daughter there and she wasn't looking too good.  I really wasn't paying much mind when the daughter ran out of the room and grabbed a nurse, the nurse came in and called for the doctor....things were getting exciting so, I got up and closed the curtain -- I'm ashamed to admit this but, I didn't GAF, I just wanted to go home.

Suddenly it hit me like a ton of bricks -- I started to feel extremely light headed and dizzy and I began sweating profusely.  My ears were ringing so loudly that I couldn't hear any of the noise going on around me and I felt as though I were going to vomit.  It was so sudden and so severe that, for a moment, I thought I was dying.  For fear of embarrassment by vomiting, I ran out of the room, to the shower room and stayed in there until I felt better (about 10 min).

When I was able to stand, I walked back towards my room but, the door was closed -- the nurse said she'd get me my things and that I could leave so, I did.

I didn't know what happened and, quite honestly, I didn't care -- I just wanted to go home so, I never bothered asking what happened to my roomie before leaving.  Two days later I saw her obituary -- she did die....and that was when it all clicked.  The grim reaper was in my room and he took my roommate.


Some people are ending right now, but we're just getting started...

Spel

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2019, 05:04:38 AM »
We'll collect all manner of things, won't we? -- grain, fruits, vegetables, stories, souls, stamps, cars, figurines, bottle caps.  Sometimes our motivations and sources are clear.  Sometimes they are less clear, however, as in the case of this next story...


My Daughter Learned to Count

My daughter woke me around 11:50 last night.  My wife and I had picked her up from her friend Sally's birthday party, brought her home, and put her to bed.  My wife went into the bedroom to read while I fell asleep watching the Braves game.

"Daddy," she whispered, tugging my shirt sleeve.  "Guess how old I'm going to be next month."

"I don't know, beauty," I said as I slipped on my glasses.  "How old?"

She smiled and held up four fingers.

It is 7:30 now.  My wife and I have been up with her for almost 8 hours.  She still refuses to tell us where she got them.


Do you have a spooky story to add to our collection?

Spel

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2019, 10:34:40 AM »
Every time you exhale, a little bit of your soul escapes. Luckily, you almost always inhale it back before anyone else gets to it. Almost.

Ever fogged up a mirror with your breath?

Don’t do that.

Offline Mathim

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2019, 10:49:44 AM »
They say human flesh tastes like pork...cultures that consume it call it "Long Pig".

So if the meat doesn't match the name it's called there...what must that mean for what they make hot 'dogs' out of? (Look up Upton Sinclair's The Jungle)
« Last Edit: October 01, 2019, 10:50:46 AM by Mathim »

Offline Valerian

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2019, 09:16:57 PM »
This is more mysterious than spooky, but it's the closest thing I have to a true ghost story -- and really it isn't even mine, it's my sister's.  I was a toddler at the time and slept through it, but my sister was about ten and still tells the story sometimes.

She was having a slumber party, so along with a few of her friends she was spending the night in the living room.  Of course the kids stayed up far too late, but eventually they all fell asleep.  Not long after that, however, a light shone into the room and woke my sister up -- a strange, yellow-orange beam that made her think of running lights or fog lights on a car, though this light was brighter than that.  Being young, she was afraid to move at first, but eventually lifted her head up and tried to make out what the source of the light might be, but she couldn't see anything unusual outside.

After several moments, the lights dimmed, then brightened, then dimmed again in a way that suggested a car turning around and going back up the driveway away from the house.  Mystery solved, you might think?  It was just a car with brighter than usual fog lights?  Not at all, for there are several things wrong with that theory.

First, that house was out in the middle of acres of woods.  Cars anywhere nearby after ten PM were almost unheard of, and anyone driving in that area would almost certainly have lived there.  The neighbors -- though I use the term loosely, since the next house was a couple of miles down the road -- knew better than to venture down our driveway, which leads to the second oddity.  The driveway was just wide enough for a car, nearly half a mile long, and twisted down to the house along a ridge with a very steep dropoff on either side, deep enough to lose three or four cars.  Regular visitors to our house didn't like driving down it; a stranger would never have risked it in the dark, without headlights.  Those strangely colored lights were bright, but not bright enough for that drive.  And the nearest streetlight was miles away.

But the oddest thing was that my sister, despite the utter silence of the woods at night, didn't hear a single sound during that time.  There wasn't any kind of noise that might have been an engine or a power source -- only the lights.

Online Zaphod

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2019, 05:22:45 AM »
These are two of my favorite two sentence horror stories.

Story 1

I begin tucking him into bed and he tells me, ‘Daddy check for monsters under my bed.’ I look underneath for his amusement and see him, another him, under the bed, staring back at me quivering and whispering, ‘Daddy there’s somebody on my bed."

Story 2

"I can't sleep" she whispered, crawling into bed with me. I woke up cold, clutching the dress she was buried in.

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2019, 05:23:45 AM »
At night there were sounds in the walls.

“Don’t worry,” said Mum. “Just an old house cooling.”

But a house doesn’t make footsteps. I made her come and listen, though all was quiet by then. Unconvinced, I investigated further. My bookcase came away from the wall too easily, and with sick inevitability Hardbacks, Ladybirds and Pelicans slipped onto the wooden floor ahead of the gunshot crash. Behind it, a door in the wall, and inside, a grubby crawl-space.

My missing Haribos and torch. A blanket and a creepy looking doll that looked like me. Made with my actual hair.

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2019, 08:29:41 AM »
Thank you very much, Lilias, Mathim, Valerian, and Zaphod!  It's delightful to be joined by such children of the night; what music you make!

Concerning the first story that I myself told: Well, apparently there are at least a few people out there who don't believe that the Grim Reaper is really real.  They think that he's just a symbol, a metaphor -- even a fairy tale for mere entertainment.  What can we say to such people...?!

No matter; here's a tidbit from the news that will be difficult for them to dismiss so readily.  It involves a body donation and tissue bank facility run by apparent mad scientist Stephen Gore (talk about a case of nominative determinism!).  Have you ever wanted to hear about "heaps of male genitalia"?  Well, now you can!


"Like Frankenstein": Womans head attached to man's body found lying next to bucket of human parts in lab

FBI agents have reportedly found buckets full of heads, arms and legs, as well as refrigerated heaps of male genitalia and different people's body parts sewn together while working on a case concerning illegally trafficked body parts.

The officers made the sickening discovery, described as a "horror story", at a science lab in Arizona.

The Biological Resource Centre in Phoenix -- a body donation and tissue bank facility -- is being sued by eight families.

The FBI followed a paper trail leading to the centre, run by owner Stephen Gore, which they said was profiting from dismembering and selling remains without donor consent.

The lab was raided by the FBI in 2014, but the testimonies detailing what the agents found have only just been made public because of the lawsuits.

Agents said the bodies had been dismembered with chainsaws and band saws, according to a report by US news outlet KMOV4.

The lawsuit reportedly alleges: "Pools of human blood and bodily fluids were found on the floor of the freezer."  It said there were no identification tags to mark the corpses.

One agent said he found a "cooler filled with male genitalia", "a bucket of heads, arms and legs", and says he saw "infected heads".

They also described the sight of a small woman's decapitated head which had been sewn onto a large male torso "like Frankenstein" and hung up on a wall.  The creation is reportedly referred to as a "morbid joke" in the lawsuit.

"This is a horror story.  It's just unbelievable!  This story is unbelievable," Troy Harp, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit against the facility, told TV station KMOV4.

Mr Harp had donated both his mother and grandmother to the facility in 2012 and 2013 on the understanding the bodies would be used for scientific purposes.

"Cancer, and leukaemia and whatever else, using sample cells," said Mr Harp.  "That's what I was told."

Speaking about what the agents found, Mr Harp said:  "Who in their right mind...  It's absolutely gross."

He also said the use of chainsaws and band saws for dismembering the bodies was "not appropriate".


(Criminy, the Grim Reaper is nicer...!)

Spel

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2019, 08:29:54 AM »
One more?  One more...

Because I have decided to bring you two, I think that I'll make my second story one that I'll take from here: "Two Large Knocks."  When you're next alone in the dark, I dare you yourself to do what the teller did; in fact, I double-dare ya!


Two Large Knocks

When I was young I used to stay at my grandparents house, they had a walk in attic which I was absolutely petrified of... and of course I had to sleep in the room just past the walk in attic.  The house was out in the countryside, it was so quiet you could always hear if anyone else was still up.

I used to have real trouble getting to sleep and would often wake up in the middle of the night afraid to move so I would just lie still.  Anyway one night about 3-4am I woke up and I was feeling brave, I was going to get over this stupid fear of the dark... so I whispered under my breath "If anything is there please tell me."  Almost instantly there was two large knocks on my bedroom door.

I never asked again.


Do you have a spooky story to share?

Spel

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2019, 06:11:41 AM »
A déjà vu is actually a glitch in reality, and it indicates that something has just been changed. Someone or something has ceased to exist, all memories and records of their existence erased forever. A déjà vu happens when they get into your brain, when they need to change your memories. Maybe to erase your brother from the world. You know, the brother that you never had.

Offline Valerian

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2019, 06:42:20 AM »

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2019, 01:30:00 AM »
Every family in every town in every country on every continent has one. It’s a cabinet, not particularly odd, not out of place. The paint was peeling a bit on the corners and the knob was a bit loose. The inside smelled like dust and the paint wasn’t the same as the kitchen walls.

You hid in there once during a game of hide ‘n’ seek.

No one told you it doesn’t open back into your reality. Don’t worry, you can’t tell the difference.

But everyone misses you.

Offline Valerian

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2019, 07:32:27 PM »

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2019, 05:24:04 AM »
Thank you very much, Lilias and Valerian!  Like a fine wine, your stories only improve with time.  (Though of course I myself never drink... wine...)

Last season I mentioned that, though I do love text-based stories and though I do hope that most of our stories remain text-based, I'd become pretty comfortable with multimedia stuff -- e.g., videos and audio recordings -- creeping into our spooky storytelling.  I myself then posted "The Thing on the Fourble Board," an episode of the 1940s radio show Quiet Please.  I'm now going to post something similar -- an episode of the radio show Suspense called "Ghost Hunt."  Its plot is an oldie but a goodie: A couple of people head out to spend the night in a haunted house.  Its structure is a little more unusual: It represents a sort of bridge between epistolary stories and the modern subgenre of "found footage."

Like "The Thing on the Fourble Board," "Ghost Hunt" takes about a half-hour to listen to, so it would demand a bit more of your time than most of the stories here.  If you liked "The Thing on the Fourble Board," though, I think that you'd probably like "Ghost Hunt," too.  Might you douse all of the lights around you, as the protagonist suggests, so as to get a better feeling of what it's like for him...?

(A quick note: I'm embedding the below version because it has a few minutes of Autolite commercials removed.  Unfortunately, however, it doesn't have closed captioning.  If you'd prefer a version with closed captioning, or if you'd just prefer a more traditional listening experience, please try this one instead -- but please, I beseech you, don't rush off afterward and spend your life savings on spark plugs!)





Do you have a spooky story to share?

Spel

Offline Valerian

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2019, 09:17:12 PM »

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #15 on: October 13, 2019, 07:07:03 AM »
Now, what was I just doing?

You don’t know it, but someone has been removed from your life. They haven’t died, they haven’t moved, they have simply ceased to be from present, future and history. However, you still know they were there, you faintly recall broken memories of someone else there, someone who should have been there, but you think you’re crazy. You go to do something, but you can’t remember what...

It was them, they wanted to talk to you.

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2019, 05:25:33 AM »
Thank you very much, Valerian and Lilias!  And many thanks to you listeners, too: Though a tale is born in the teller, it only thrives in the listener.

O.K., so, riddle me this: Once the Grimster has swung his scythe, what happens then?  Is there a heaven?  Is there a hell?  Does one pass into the bardo?  And if one goes somewhere, where did one come from in the first place?  What's the point of life spent in too, too solid flesh, anyhow...?

Well, here's a disconcerting idea: Just as we grow crops and tend livestock to feed ourselves, so too are we the crops, the livestock, of still more powerful beings.  Rather than feed upon our flesh, however, these beings feed upon our pain, our despair, our anxiety, our anger, our guilt, our alienation -- something called loosh.  I'll be drawing from this concise summary...


Loosh

Did you ever wonder why a good God would build a world where the only way to survive is by taking life?  How long would you stay alive if you refused to eat?  You may love animals and grow plants inside your home and flowers in your garden, but every time you eat, you destroy the life of something.  A something with a consciousness, that feels and desires to live, as we do.

The other day I grabbed an onion from a basket to chop up, and I saw it had sprouted a beautiful, tender, light-green shoot.  It had a life inside it, a consciousness that wanted to take root, breathe air and thrive.  Any tears in chopping that onion did not come from the fumes.

I'm not a sentimentalist.  I'm a person questioning, increasingly aware of an insidious thread woven through biological life.  We are born, we feed, and we die.  Life is a process of consuming other living things in order to stay alive as long as possible until death in turn consumes us.  We tell ourselves life is a whole lot more, but it's reduced to that as long as we must feed to survive.  If we can't stay alive more than a few months without food, how can eating not be fundamental to how we define our existence?

Eating is a requirement for biological life as we know it.  It's the thread that holds together material existence.  More than a thread, it's a chain, binding us to the law that we must consume each other.  Rebelling is punishable by death.

What kind of God or gods would create a world predicated on killing?  We don't like to ask that, and we find every excuse to avoid looking at this question.  But every time a dear one dies, or you find a nibbled bird in the yard destroyed by an idle cat, or you read about an animal that has suffered mercilessly, or another molested child, or a nation ravaged by a quake that's buried thousands of living people, your mind goes back to that nagging question.  Who would make a world like this?  Was it truly a God of love?

According to much evidence, it wasn't.  The world was created by something else.  Or if it was created by the loving God our hearts insist exists, then creation has been tampered with by someone else so merciless that it barely resembles the original divine vision.  The biological universe is controlled by the law that to live we must take life or die.  That is sinister.  Something there is that makes us have to eat, that makes us age and disintegrate.  This is the "something wrong with the world," the crack in the universe.  Knowledge of it works "like a splinter in the mind, driving you mad," quoting The Matrix.

Robert Monroe, in his book Far Journeys, writes of contact he had with a light being in an out-of-body experience.  (Monroe is arguably the world's foremost researcher on out-of-body experiences; he started an institute with trainee / researchers to scientifically investigate the phenomenon.)  Reportedly the light being told Monroe that when humans die, their energy is released and harvested by trans-dimensional beings, who use it to extend their own life spans.  The claim is that the universe is a garden created by these beings as their food source.

According to Monroe's story, animals are intentionally positioned on this planet to feed on plants and on each other, thereby releasing the life force of their victims so it can be harvested.  In a predator-prey struggle, exceptional energy is produced in the combatants.  The spilling of blood in a fight-to-the-death conflict releases this intense energy, which the light beings call "loosh."  Loosh is also harvested from the loneliness of animals and humans, as well as from the emotions engendered when a parent is forced to defend the life of its young.  Another source of loosh is humans' worship.

According to Monroe's informant, our creators, the cosmic "energy farmers," intentionally equipped animals with devices like fangs, claws, and super-speed in order to prolong predator-prey combat and thereby produce more loosh.  In other words, the greater the suffering, the more life force is spewed from our bodies, and the tastier the energy meal for our creators.

This story told to Monroe corresponds to reports in some of the world's oldest scriptures, the Vedas, Upanishads, and Puranas of India.  There we read that "the universe is upheld by sacrifice" (Atharvaveda) and that "all who are living (in this world) are the sacrificers.  There is none living who does not perform yagya (sacrifice).  This body is (created) for sacrifice, and arises out of sacrifice and changes according to sacrifice." (Garbha Upanishad)  "(Death as the Creator) resolved to devour all that he had created; for he eats all...  He is the eater of the whole universe; this whole universe is his food." (Mahabharata)

In the writings of Carlos Castaneda, who chronicles the life and teachings of a Yaquii sorcerer called Don Juan, we find another story of the Divine devouring humans, in this case human consciousness.  Reports Castaneda: "The Eagle is devouring the awareness of all the creatures that, alive on earth a moment before and now dead, have floated to the Eagle's beak, like a ceaseless swarm of fireflies, to meet their owner, their reason for having had life.  The Eagle disentangles these tiny flames, lays them flat, as a tanner stretches out a hide, and then consumes them; for awareness is the Eagle's food.  The Eagle, that power that governs the destinies of all living things, reflects equally and at once all those living things." (The Eagle's Gift, by Carlos Castaneda)

The idea that man must sacrifice (must kill something or be killed in order to appease the gods) is apparently intrinsic to all the world's root religions.  We find blood ritual, including human sacrifice, in the Druidic tradition, Tibetan Buddhism, among the Indians of the Americas, in Greece and Rome, Africa, China, Arabia, Germany, Phoenicia, and Egypt.  Even the Old Testament (Judges 11:31-40) has a little-advertised story of human sacrifice, with the Israelite judge Jephthah ritually slaughtering his own daughter to fulfill a vow he made to Jehovah.

Robert Morning Sky, a truth seeker of the Hopi and Apache traditions, tells a story he learned from his people about a race of beings who knew no limitations, who existed far outside this physical universe.  One day one of them declared his intention to visit Earth and take on a body just for the adventure of it, for the experience.  His friends cautioned him, as this universe had a reputation as amnesia-producing, a place of no return.  But the entity laughed that off and promised to come back after one lifetime.

Centuries passed, and the entity never came home.  One of his comrades decided to enter the physical world to go look for his friend.  He promised not to get lost in matter and to return with the other individual.  More centuries passed, and neither being returned.  So another immortal entered physical mass, and he also never came back.  In time many members of these unlimited beings incarnated in human form, and the story goes, none of them yet has gone home.

Maybe we are those people.
(c) Bronte Baxter 2008


Renfield would be proud...!

Spel

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2019, 05:25:49 AM »
Earlier I offered "Ghost Hunt," an episode of an old radio show, and yes -- yes! -- I'm "going aural" once again.  This time I've decided to present an even more unusual morsel: Nick Drake's "Harvest Breed," a haunting song from a haunted mind.  What "Harvest Breed" means exactly I'll leave up to you, but I think that you'll agree that it snugly fits the soundtrack for the season.  Please don't be too surprised if you think of it late some lonely night when wind is sighing in the tree branches and rain is falling like teardrops.





Do you have a spooky story to share?

Spel

Offline Remiel

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #18 on: October 16, 2019, 02:14:24 PM »
I don't exist.

I feel like I've stepped into some bizarre, Twilight Zone version of the world I once knew.  One in which I am completely invisible, or close enough to it.  I am surrounded by a crowd of people, yet no one sees me.  I call out, yet no one hears me.  I try to touch someone, and they pull away.

I wander, for what seems like days, trying to find some sense of reality, of identity.  And, as always, I am adrift in a sea of people, unseeing, uncaring, flowing around me like drops of rain running down the windshield of a car.  I am a ghost, a phantom: no more substantial, no more corporeal than a mirage in the desert.  Some almost see me; but they have their own lives, their own petty desires and cares and fears and worries, and, to them, I am only just so much background noise in the over-saturated aural landscape.  I stumble, I fall; the people step over me, seeing me as little more than an obstacle in their path.

I am nothing.  I am insignificant.  If I vanished forever, no one would even notice.

Do you want to know the scariest part of this story?

I am not a ghost.  This is not an alternate universe.  I am a real, normal person.  And this world is our world.

Offline BlackNight897

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2019, 04:19:06 PM »
A true story of a house in a village, in a place far of the beaten track. A transit accomodation of sorts where families stay a few years or more....but always with the same tale. To the point where no one mentions it, and allows it to be mentioned instead, for fear of swaying perception. A house where toddlers will always smile,giggle and wave, engage an unseen, from the crib, or around the table at supper. 'The man' as he has been called...since the 1960's.

That one is true. The kind of true that challenges many perceptions :)

Offline Jag

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #20 on: October 16, 2019, 04:45:55 PM »
Waking Nightmare

The hammering was louder and it felt like my ears were going to start bleeding from the sound of it. I had never felt anything like it before. It swarmed around inside of my head like a dozen bees. It made my eyes roll back in my head for a moment. I sort of wished it would make me black out. Anything to end this nightmare. Sadly, I wasn't that luck. There was one bright moment about the loud sound of hammers. It seemed to drive away that woman with her Cheshire Cat smile and those blue eyes closed and disappeared into the darkness. Nothing seemed to ease the feel of pressure against my chest though. If anything, the longer this went on, the heavier it felt. I began to wonder if I would ever suffocate. It felt as if I was able to inhale the barest stream of air into my lungs.

Unable to do anything else, I just squeezed my eyes shut and tried to focus on pulling in as much air as possible. It was like I was sitting at the bottom of a deep pool, unable to find my way to the surface. Like someone had spun me around very fast and thrown me into the water. Up felt like down and left felt like right. My lungs were burning and I had to find the surface soon.

When I opened my eyes, I realized that the hammering had not driven everything off. No. The skull was still there. Still standing near the window in it's robe and moving ever so slowly closer. Was this being death? I feared that it was. I wanted to be free of this nightmare, but not that way. It was such a terrible time, but the idea that some hooded skull was the Reaper was so cliche and almost funny. Not that I could laugh about it. Laughing in the face of death. What a sight that would have been.

There was so much sweat dripping off my body, the whole bed below me felt wet. I wondered if I had soiled myself too as it got closer. I couldn't see much of it's body. My eyes focused as it raised an arm and a bony hand came from the sleeve of it's robe. It remembered playing with the fake skeleton in biology class. Feeling the bones of the hand. It was strange to see one coming towards me now. I wondered how it would feel when it met with my skin, if that was where it was heading. The one in class had been made of hard plastic. I knew that wasn't how real bone felt. Paralyzed as I was, I wondered if I would even be able to feel it touching me.

My answer came as the bleach white bone fingertips closed the distance between our bodies. I crossed my eyes to watched the finger tips make contact with the bridge of my nose. It was the strangest non-feeling in the world. I knew it was touching me. I knew there should have been a 'feel' to it, but there wasn't. To know something was touching me, without me feeling it. I'm not sure what was scarier; to be able to feel it and know where it was going or to not be able to feel it and not know where it was going as it disappeared from the line of sight of my eyes.

The tips of the bone fingers disappeared over my lips and I tried to imagine what it must feel like. I tried to remember how it felt for someone to run their fingers over my neck, but I couldn't. All I could do was refocus my eyes back up at the hooded skull of it's face. The shape of it was human, but only just so. The mouth seemed too long and the eye sockets too deep. Could it see me? Did it have any sense of feeling? Or was it like me? Unfeeling and cold.

Out of the corner of my eye, I caught a flash of the bony hand sweeping upward before moving back down to my throat. My eyes widened at the sight as I turned full attention back to the hand. It was dripping with blood. What sort of damage was being done to my body? Was it just my throat? How could I still be alive if all that blood was coming from my throat? The fear of not knowing was more painful than anything else. My vision went watery with tears. What was this thing doing to me?!

I never wanted to scream more in my life, but then I remembered, this was how I felt every time it happened.

Every night. My waking nightmare.

Sleep paralysis.

-Jag

Offline Valerian

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #21 on: October 16, 2019, 06:03:19 PM »
From the scary story collection at jezebel.com:

My freshman year of college, I attended a small women-only liberal arts college in Virginia (it’s gone co-ed in the last few years, but at this point it wasn’t). I’m from California and was a little worried about being alone on my own so far from home, so I requested a room in the dorms’ No Man Hallway. The other residents were a bunch of girls like me: mostly freshmen, all of us from religious or otherwise conservative households. The only men allowed on the hallway (besides the occasional father moving things in and out for his daughter) were maintenance workers, and they had to announce themselves by bellowing “Man on the Hall!” whenever they came up.

From Day One, something was wrong with that hallway. It started with an eerie feeling of being watched, and escalated into things like radios and the showers in the communal bathroom at the end of the hall being turned on and off apparently of their own free will, things being moved around girls’ rooms, that kind of thing. Typical haunting stuff. It started out as very benign, and we all joked about it, how we had representatives of the three major religions on the hall and at least one of us should be able to perform an exorcism, if need be.

So September and most of October passed with general activity, and then things began to get...creepy. The entire hall was woken in the middle of the night when someone ran up and down banging on every door. You’d walk into the bathroom to find every tap in the sinks spewing hot water, full blast. Radios that had never acted up before would be turned on. And whatever it was started getting nasty. It would pull our hair when we were out in the hall talking, or push us in the bathroom, or whatever. Nothing terrifying, but alarming. And worse, it moved out of the hallway and bathroom and started coming into our bedrooms more and more.

So I was really scared, but trying to be brave and not telling my family about the ghost. But my mom got the story out of me one night when we were talking on the phone, and I admitted to being scared. My mom is pretty sensitive to spirits, and she was alarmed. I tried to play it off as no big deal, and went about my college life.

The next day, I came back to the dorm from class, walked into my bedroom, and there was a man sitting in my desk chair.

He was not a flesh-and-blood man, either. He was more of a shadow, an outline, but I could see him clearly. I think I stood in my doorway for about a year and a half, staring at him, until he raised a hand at me. Raised a hand, like he was greeting me, inviting me in. I freaked out and ran down to the bathroom, where all of the showers were running. There was no one else in the hallway.

From that day on, he was always there, sitting in my room. If I was bopping around with my iPod, I’d see him sitting on my chair or on my bed. If I needed the chair, he’d move to the desk, or sometimes to my roommate’s bed. I never saw him clearly; he was always a shape, an outline, more an impression than anything else. But he was there, and he was real, and eventually I started to call him John. He was tall, and kind of thin, and he gave me the impression of an older gent who wore cardigans and a tie, like Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch. I liked John.

Because here’s the thing: from the day he arrived in my dorm room, whatever was in that hallway left me alone. It would still run around and bang on every door-except mine. It would mess around with everyone’s stuff -- except mine and my roommate’s. Everyone else’s room phone would ring and have no one on their other end. Never mine. Other girls’ food would disappear from the communal fridge, or end up spattered in the sink; other girls would find their clothes tampered with; other doors would find their posters and crap messed up (we all decorated our front doors). My room? Nothing.

I didn’t mention John to anyone. I was having a rough time; my roommate and I were fighting and I was realizing that I really didn’t like the college at all. One night around Thanksgiving, some church friends and I watched “The Ring” as an activity, and then they dropped me back at the dorm. And I just felt sick walking in, like I was being watched. All the way down that long hallway to my room, I could feel whatever was there watching me, waiting. All of the lights were on, but I was so scared that I thought I was going to cry. I made it into my room, curled up in my bed (my roommate was gone for the weekend), and wished that I were home. I could hear the thing outside running up and down the hallway; I had just watched a terrifying movie, I was eighteen and small and scared. I got my blankets up around me and just cried.

After a while I realized that I wasn’t alone. My personal ghost was sitting on the bed with me. And somehow I knew that as long as he was there, whatever was in the hall (and there had been some inter-denominational talk about getting the place blessed) would not come into my room and would not hurt me. For whatever reason, he was protecting me.

On my last morning at the college, I got up at four o’clock to meet a taxi to take me to the airport. I got dressed, ate a bowl of cereal in the tiny communal kitchen, put the empty bowl into the sink, and walked back to my room to bring my suitcase down to the elevator. As I waited for the elevator, something in the kitchen behind me exploded. I walked over to the doorway and looked in: an egg in a pot had been heated until it cracked. The ring on the stove that it stood on was red hot. I’d been standing in that kitchen three minutes before and there hadn’t been anything on the stove. No one else was awake.

I turned back to the elevator and saw John standing next to my suitcase. The doors opened and we walked inside, and he was with me all the way across campus to the taxi by the front doors of the main building. I was so relieved to leave that place behind me as I drove away, though at that point I was still planning on returning in January. (Spoiler: I didn’t.)

At home in California, I told my mom everything, from my disappointment in the college as a whole, to the haunting. I told her about the thing on the hallway, and about how it never came into my room after my own personal guardian angel showed up. I described how he would sit in my chair and keep watch, and she laughed.

“Sounds like my great-granddad,” she said. “When I was little, he’d always keep an eye on us kids. He didn’t like bullies and he had no patience at all with the supernatural. He believed in it, but he didn’t like it haunting us.” That entire side of the family is Mormon, and they all believed in (and had experience with) ghosts. My great-grandfather, who I’d never even heard of, apparently had no problem with performing exorcisms or “casting out” spirits, and was widely believed to be good at it. He was fiercely protective of his family, too. He died when my mom was a teenager, in the late ‘60s.

And his name was John.

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Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #22 on: October 18, 2019, 01:41:36 AM »
Still scared in your boots there, kid? Wonderin’ why your fingers keep drippin’ red? Why you ain’t slept in days, Marty? It’s not insomnia. You wonderin’ why nothing seems real no more, boy? It’s cus it ain’t. No, you did not wrestle that gun from your daddy, hold it in your trembling hands, and point it right between his scared eyes like you planned. It was not your finger that pulled the trigger on him. You were too slow again. It ain’t daddy’s ghost keepin’ you up nights, kid. It’s you who’s haunting him.

Offline Valerian

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #23 on: October 19, 2019, 09:18:44 PM »
One of the best scary stories I've ever read, called "Hare's House", by the late, great Ruth Rendell.  A husband and wife get a great bargain on a lovely, spacious house -- because a murder was once committed there.  And that murder still haunts the house, though not quite in the way one might expect...

Note: This is a reading of the story, the only version I could find freely available online, but it's a good reading, about twenty minutes long, and well worth the time.

Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Re: Dare We Share Some Spooky Stories?
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2019, 05:20:23 AM »
You rock, Remiel, BlackNight897, Jag, Valerian, and Lilias!  Thanks to all of you terrific contributors, this season's harvest is turning out to be quite the cornucopia.

To harvest is to gather what we need.  Of course, what we think we need is often something that we merely want, and chasing after something that we merely want can lead us into all sorts of sticky predicaments.  And what happens when what we want now isn't what we'll later wish we'd wanted?  Staying out at the bar for just one more drink might sound like a good idea now, for example, but tomorrow morning the drinker in question could very well have a different opinion...

In this vein, please allow me to serve you John Collier's classic "The Chaser."  Bottoms up!


The Chaser

Alan Austen, as nervous as a kitten, went up certain dark and creaky stairs in the neighborhood of Pell Street, and peered about for a long time on the dim landing before he found the name he wanted written obscurely on one of the doors.

He pushed open this door, as he had been told to do, and found himself in a tiny room, which contained no furniture but a plain kitchen table, a rocking-chair, and an ordinary chair.  On one of the dirty buff-colored walls were a couple of shelves, containing in all perhaps a dozen bottles and jars.

An old man sat in the rocking chair, reading a newspaper.  Alan, without a word, handed him the card he had been given.  "Sit down, Mr. Austen," said the old man very politely.  "I am glad to make your acquaintance."

"Is it true," asked Alan, "that you have a certain mixture that has -- er -- quite extraordinary effects?"

"My dear sir," replied the old man, "my stock in trade is not very large -- I don't deal in laxatives and teething mixtures -- but such as it is, it is varied.  I think nothing I sell has effects which could be precisely described as ordinary."

"Well, the fact is..." began Alan.

"Here, for example," interrupted the old man, reaching for a bottle from the shelf.  "Here is a liquid as colorless as water, almost tasteless, quite imperceptible in coffee, wine, or any other beverage.  It is also quite imperceptible to any known method of autopsy."

"Do you mean it is a poison?" cried Alan, very much horrified.

"Call it a glove-cleaner if you like," said the old man indifferently.  "Maybe it will clean gloves.  I have never tried.  One might call it a life-cleaner.  Lives need cleaning sometimes."

"I want nothing of that sort," said Alan.

"Probably it is just as well," said the old man.  "Do you know the price of this?  For one teaspoonful, which is sufficient, I ask five thousand dollars.  Never less.  Not a penny less."

"I hope all your mixtures are not as expensive," said Alan apprehensively.

"Oh dear, no," said the old man.  "It would be no good charging that sort of price for a love potion, for example.  Young people who need a love potion very seldom have five thousand dollars.  Otherwise they would not need a love potion."

"I am glad to hear that," said Alan.

"I look at it like this," said the old man.  "Please a customer with one article, and he will come back when he needs another.  Even if it is more costly.  He will save up for it, if necessary."

"So," said Alan, "you really do sell love potions?"

"If I did not sell love potions," said the old man, reaching for another bottle, "I should not have mentioned the other matter to you.  It is only when one is in a position to oblige that one can afford to be so confidential."

"And these potions," said Alan.  "They are not just -- just -- er -- "

"Oh, no," said the old man.  "Their effects are permanent, and extend far beyond the mere casual impulse.  But they include it.  Oh, yes they include it.  Bountifully, insistently.  Everlastingly."

"Dear me!" said Alan, attempting a look of scientific detachment.  "How very interesting!"

"But consider the spiritual side," said the old man.

"I do, indeed," said Alan.

"For indifference," said the old man, "they substitute devotion.  For scorn, adoration.  Give one tiny measure of this to the young lady -- its flavor is imperceptible in orange juice, soup, or cocktails -- and however gay and giddy she is, she will change altogether.  She will want nothing but solitude and you."

"I can hardly believe it," said Alan.  "She is so fond of parties."

"She will not like them any more," said the old man.  "She will be afraid of the pretty girls you may meet."

"She will actually be jealous?" cried Alan in a rapture.  "Of me?"

"Yes, she will want to be everything to you."

"She is, already.  Only she doesn't care about it."

"She will, when she has taken this.  She will care intensely.  You will be her sole interest in life."

"Wonderful!" cried Alan.

"She will want to know all you do," said the old man.  "All that has happened to you during the day.  Every word of it.  She will want to know what you are thinking about, why you smile suddenly, why you are looking sad."

"That is love!" cried Alan.

"Yes," said the old man.  "How carefully she will look after you!  She will never allow you to be tired, to sit in a draught, to neglect your food.  If you are an hour late, she will be terrified.  She will think you are killed, or that some siren has caught you."

"I can hardly imagine Diana like that!" cried Alan, overwhelmed with joy.

"You will not have to use your imagination," said the old man.  "And, by the way, since there are always sirens, if by any chance you should, later on, slip a little, you need not worry.  She will forgive you, in the end.  She will be terribly hurt, of course, but she will forgive you -- in the end."

"That will not happen," said Alan fervently.

"Of course not," said the old man.  "But, if it did, you need not worry.  She would never divorce you.  Oh, no!  And, of course, she will never give you the least, the very least, grounds for -- uneasiness."

"And how much," said Alan, "is this wonderful mixture?"

"It is not as dear," said the old man, "as the glove-cleaner, or life-cleaner, as I sometimes call it.  No.  That is five thousand dollars, never a penny less.  One has to be older than you are, to indulge in that sort of thing.  One has to save up for it."

"But the love potion?" said Alan.

"Oh, that," said the old man, opening the drawer in the kitchen table, and taking out a tiny, rather dirty-looking phial.  "That is just a dollar."

"I can't tell you how grateful I am," said Alan, watching him fill it.

"I like to oblige," said the old man.  "Then customers come back, later in life, when they are better off, and want more expensive things.  Here you are.  You will find it very effective."

"Thank you again," said Alan.  "Goodbye."

"Au revoir," said the man.


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