Wednesday, 15 October 2008
Haunted - My True Ghost Story - Part Two
By the next morning I had decided to vacate my bedroom and move into the third bedroom which was tiny, so tiny that you get only get a bed in there. All my clothes and my dressing table had to remain in the other room but anything, to me, was preferable to feeling that cold hand again.
Strangely, my Father still would not accept that anything paranormal was going on even though he had seen the pictures lined up against the wall with his own eyes. He was a very down-to-earth man and could only deal with things of this world. Maybe he did not want to know, maybe he was afraid of something he could not understand, but to him there had to be a rational explanation.
I know it sounds like typical poltergeist activity and, in a way it was, but not like in cases you have probably read about. For instance we never saw things moved around, never had things thrown at us or whizz across the room. No, it was much more subtle than that. It did affect us though and badly. It was as if the negative energy was draining us and things started to go badly wrong in our lives. For instance there was the death of several of our relatives (this, of course, could just have been normal and would have occurred anyway). However, our health began to suffer. All of us were plagued by one thing after another and we seemed to have endless bad luck.
Dad developed crippling arthritis that came on so rapidly that the doctors were dumbfounded. Mum developed dizzy spells and ulcers. I went down with one complaint after another and was very ill for quite some time. My Father loved his job, he had been working there since he was fourteen and he had worked his way up to being a partner. Suddenly his firm crashed, for reasons I cannot go into here, and he lost just about everything, nearly every penny he had.
I hated to be left alone in that place when Mum was out shopping and I was sick in bed. I always waited anxiously for her to return. Then I experienced a new thing. I kept hearing deep groans and they were the groans of a man, a man seemingly in deep despair.
Mum tried desperately talking to Dad with the aim of getting him to move but it was impossible. With his loss of funds we could not afford to move and Dad said he was too old to go through all of that again anyway. He never heard the woman sobbing, the groaning of the man and put the loss of objects down to our carelessness although even he could not explain the removal of the pictures from the wall. No, here we were and here we were going to stay.
I had kept a couple of close friends from the area in which we used to live and they would come down, independently, to stay for weekends. However, after a while neither of them wanted to come. They said they felt so depressed afterwards and were never comfortable when there, despite our friendship. I was sad but it was perfectly understandable.
Mum decided this could not go on. She had a word with our local Minister. Unfortunately, he did not believe in anything "other worldly " and could not or would not help. She decided the only thing to do was to try and find out something about the history of the place. In a very tactful way, she spoke to the near neighbours. They could provide practically no information. Most of them only knew that the place had been uninhabited for quite some time, several had not been there much longer than we had. However, one of the neighbours told us to contact Mr. J. who lived at the other end of the street. He was the longest resident and might know something.
It was difficult for Mum to approach a total stranger but she struck up a conversation with him in the street one day. He turned out to be the local historian and was also the author of books. As we were both interested in history, she managed to wangle us an invitation to his house to discuss the locality and its history. After polite chit chat, cups of tea and a short lecture about the area, Mum asked him if he knew who had been the previous occupiers of our property. His reply was that a very sad story was connected with the place. He then related the details.
Apparently, our home had at one time belonged to a couple who had been married quite a few years but had never been blessed with children, so they decided to adopt. After going through all the procedure and being on a waiting list, they eventually managed to adopt a little boy. Mr. J. reckoned he would have been about six years old at the time. Naturally they doted on the boy, he was the light of their lives. His mother was very protective, too much so. In fact she wrapped him in cotton wool. Mr. J. said he was a cheeky little boy, always up to pranks and jokes with his parents and his friends but was very polite and normally obedient.
The years passed and he reached the age of about eleven. He then starting pestering his parents for a bicycle. Not an unusual thing in a boy, all his friends had them and he did not want to be left out. However, his mother was adamant that he could not have one. This rang a bell with me, my Mother had always barred me from having a bicycle. Like all children, he kept on and on trying to wear her down. He sulked and refused to speak to her. Just the thing children do when they cannot get their own way.
Well, his mother could not bear to see him unhappy so eventually they gave in and said he could have one for Christmas. Christmas came and he was overjoyed with his shiny new bike. He wanted to go out on it straight away and his parents agreed providing he only rode up and down the road and nowhere else. He agreed and they went to the front gate to watch him for a while. Then his mother went back into the property to prepare the Christmas lunch telling him he was to come back in after about ten minutes.
Ten minutes passed and he did not return. His mother went out to call him and he was not in the road, there was no sign of him. She looked down towards the main road and saw some commotion going on. She knew - immediately she knew. She ran screaming down the road (not a long one) to find a crowd of people huddled around. He had defied his parents and taken his bike out of the road and onto the main one. Nobody knew for sure what happened but there was a collision with a car and he was killed instantly on that frosty Christmas morning.
A tragic tale and not the only one of its kind but, alas, it did not stop there. His mother went completely to pieces as one would expect - but it went further. She completely lost her mind. She would go around asking people if they had seen him, she would stand at the gate for hours watching for him, she would not eat, could not sleep. Despite treatment, first from her doctor and then several stays in hospital with drug therapy and electric shock treatment, she continued to deteriorate. Then one day, she was found wandering naked in the street. That was the end for her. She was sectioned and placed into a mental institution from which she never emerged.
Her husband had lost everything. His adored son, his wife. He stayed alone in the bungalow for a while but could not bear to be there so he put it on the market, found a buyer and vacated the premises. Two weeks after he had moved out, in a fit of despair, he put an end to his own life. He had stayed in the area and his death was reported in the newspaper. Mr. J remembered it so well. The new owners of the property only stayed a few months, then sold it and so it went on until my Father purchased it. Several owners, none of them living there for long.
Mum and I listened to this story in horror as you can well imagine. Such tragedy. A short time later we thanked Mr. J. for his time (we never told him what had been going on) and went home. We discussed it. We both knew now who the sobbing woman was and why she was sobbing. We both felt sure it was the little boy who moved the articles around and "hid" them until he was ready to put them back. After all, he had been a joker in life, so why not in death? The only thing we could not explain was the pictures. Surely the boy would have been too short, even in spirit form, to reach up and take them down? Maybe it was the man. He would have had to have take any of his own pictures down when he was packing to leave. They do say suicides rest uneasy.
So, we decided to do our own form of exorcism. Mum carried her bible and read the 23rd psalm and the Lord's Prayer. I carried a cross and went around each room sprinkling salt, especially into the corners and telling the spirits that they had moved on, that they did not belong here anymore and to go in peace in the name of God.
After that, we never heard the sobbing woman again and the groaning of the man also ceased. However, that was not the case with "the boy" as we called him. The pictures remained in place but still things would go missing. Sometimes I still glimpsed a small figure out of the corner of my eye. Now, it was a child that I heard crying. Had we succeeded in exorcising his parents and now he grieved for them that were lost to him?
Also, the atmosphere of the place did not seem to lighten. It was as if the very walls had soaked up the pain, the sorrow, the tears and was retaining them.
I got married from that bungalow and I was so glad when it came to the last night I would ever spend under that roof. I was unwell even then having gone down with a bad case of bronchitis just a couple of days before the wedding. It was almost as if something or somebody did not want me to leave because as I laid in bed that night, I said aloud how glad I was that I was leaving. Immediately an icy blast of air seemed to shoot across the room and envelop me.
My Dad never knew about the exorcism we performed and continued to deny all the strange happenings. However, this man who was so practical, so single-minded, so disbelieving, was going to have his mind changed for all time and in a very dramatic way.
To be continued......................