Sunday, May 4, 2014

Random horror story

Ran across this awhile ago, and  figured I'd share it with you. I wrote this back in high school, so it's probably a little crappy. Let me know what y'all think about it. Yes, that includes you, my lurkers. Please?
Just a side note: The story and house is based on a house in my area, which has sadly been torn down since I wrote this story. Sadly.

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"You want to do what around Halloween?!?" Lou asked, sounding surprised.
"I'd like to go on a haunted house road trip," Kailee replied reasonably.
"Sis, you've gone completely insane..." Lou muttered, sounding somewhat annoyed.
"You've just now noticed, brother dear?" Kailee asked, sarcasm coloring her tone of voice.
"Funny, sister," Lou drawled, his tone just as sarcastic as his sister's. He turned to Sean and asked, "So, what's your opinion of her hair-brained idea, bud?"
       "I don't think it's all that hair-brained, and it sounds kinda interesting. I'd be more than willing to go with her just to make sure nothing happens to her," Sean replied. Kailee grinned at him, glad he had readily agreed to come.
       Lou on the other hand, did not agree so readily. "And how d'we know these places aren't fake?"
       "I've researched the places on the list," Kailee nodded towards the list in front of her brother. "-Thoroughly. They're well documented by several well known folks." She replied.
       "Yeah, and they all could've been high as a freakin' kite when they saw the ghosts," Lou scoffed.
       "Right, and I was a druggie when I saw Lucy Pretty Eagle," Kailee snapped, annoyed at how skeptical her brother was. But then, he had always been like that.
       "And I still think you read far too many ghost stories when we lived in Carlisle," Lou muttered. "You still don't have me convinced, but I may as well come, just to make sure you two don't get into trouble."
       "Thank you, Lou!" Kailee chirped.
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~
       During the next few weeks, they gathered the supplies they needed, along with contingency supplies, and finalized plans.
       The first couple of days, they wandered around Gettysburg, checking out the battlefields, and older buildings. Kailee, having appointed herself the trip photographer, took photos of various locations they visited. They spent the next few days showing Sean around Carlisle and visiting friends they had left behind. On Halloween, Lou drug them around the Newville area.
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~
       "So why are we doing this again?" Kailee asked, sounding bored out of her mind, as Sean stifled a yawn.
       "Because I like to explore back roads, that's why," Lou replied, sounding just slightly put upon.
       "Suuure," Kailee dryly said. "That explains why we're lost... yet again, dear brother."
       "I'm not lost!" Lou growled.
       "Right, you're just slightly directionally challenged..." Sean muttered. Lou shot a glance at Sean that all too clearly told him to shut the frell up, and Kailee rolled her eyes. She turned, and watched the passing countryside, bored, and singing along to the radio under her breath. As they passed a small elementary school, Kailee saw something out of the corner of her eye, and turned around to see what it was, only to be greeted by the sight of empty fields. She turned back around, and noticed Lou watching her in the rearview mirror.
       "See anything interesting, Kailee?" Lou asked, a hint of sarcasm playing at the edge of his voice, his eyes back on the road ahead.
       "Thought I did, but then again it coulda just been my overactive imagination playing tricks with me. As usual, according to you anyways," she grumbled. Lou rolled his eyes, and ignoring Kailee glaring at the back of his head hard enough to burn holes.
       "Actually, I thought I saw something back there too. Kai wasn't hallucinating, Lou," Sean piped up.
       "Great, you two must've had drugs slipped into your food this morning..." Lou muttered.
       "Lou, if there'd been drugs in our food, you would've been affected too. Think it out rationally for once!" Kailee growled, growing slightly more annoyed with her brother's increasing skepticism towards the paranormal. She glanced out at the small burg they were currently passing through. "Look, it would make sense to go back and see if it was actually a figment of our imagination. If it is there, then hey, we were right. If it isn’t, then you can have bragging rights."
       "Sure. But don't be surprised if nothing's there," Lou remarked. He pulled into the parking lot of a small supermarket. "But first, let's get some food. I don't know about you, but I'm hungry."
       "That figures, brother. You're always hungry!" Kailee remarked, humor darkening her tone.
       "Works for me. And don't make me shove a pickle down your throat, Kailee," Sean joked as the three climbed out of the Jeep.
       "You wouldn't dare!" Kailee exclaimed in mock horror
       "Would too!"
       "Hey, pickle shoving is the big brother's job, Sean. Gitcher head right!" Lou mock-scolded.
       "Geez, who gave you a wedgie this morning, boss?" Sean jokingly asked.
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~
       After they had gotten the food, eaten, and exhausted most topics of conversation, they headed back towards where Kailee and Sean had seen the house. As they drove back through the hilly terrain, each wondered what would greet them. Lou was shocked to see the old brick house, yard overgrown and vines growing up the exterior, and the drive somewhat weed-choked. After he pulled in and parked, he turned to his companions.
       "So, is this anything like what you guys saw?" he asked.
       They nodded, staring at the building and grounds, as they got out and wandered around, Kailee snapping the occasional picture, and occasionally glancing up at the thunderheads that had been building up all morning. Lou was the first to notice the partially over-grown, half-rusty, half a dull dark blue, older model car. Weeds had already grown window-level, and looked intent on hiding the car even further, if given half a chance. Kailee was the next to notice.
       "Wow, looks like it's been here awhile..." she remarked.
       "Sure, and it coulda been dumped here within the past month or two," Lou sarcastically remarked.
       "Hmm-mm, and if it were, the weeds wouldn't have grown so high, and there would at least be some sign of it being hauled in," Sean pointed out. "I'd say it's been here about a year or so."
       "I'd say more like two to three years, judging from the plant growth," Kailee pitched in. "Of course, depending on the rain, the plants could've grown faster, or slower. Plus, we don't know how much rust was on there to begin with."
       "True enough. Hey, let's make the rest of this side-trip quick," Lou said, glancing up at the now completely overcast sky. "I don't like the way the weather's turned for the worse."
       "Right-o, Lou," Sean called back, as he and Kailee headed over to the house to check it out. Sean peered into the basement as Kailee wandered inside and peered into the rooms. He thought he saw motion in the darker regions, but dismissed it as his imagination. Sean was roughly halfway down before Kailee and Lou called for him to join them. He walked in, only to be slightly baffled when he did not see them immediately, but headed to the small landing between the first and second floors, where they had stopped.
       "Check out that graffiti," Lou commented, nodded towards the part of the third floor that was visible.
       "I'd say some Satanists or cultists had some fun in here," Sean replied. He shivered slightly, noting the creepy, almost unfriendly, vibe coming off the upper landing.
       "Yeah, I'll say. They had some fun downstairs too, apparently," Kailee said. "Or at least, that's just judging from all the graffiti Lou and I saw down there."
       "Actually, the stuff down there looked more like a bunch of kids," Lou commented. "I wonder why the stairs to going up there are missing."
       "Judging from the bad vibes I'm getting, to keep whatever is up there, well, there," Kailee murmured. Lou glanced at her, his skepticism clearly in full force. Kailee brushed past her brother, and started checking out the second floor. Sean and Lou looked at each other, shrugged and headed back downstairs to look around down there.
       When she came back down, Lou glanced at his watch gratefully.
       "So, ready to leave, kiddo?" he asked.
       "Yep. Got all the pictures I want from here," she replied.
       As they headed for the back doorway, a flash of lightening and boom of thunder exploded practically overhead. With a series of curses that would have made any Marine squad proud, they ran outside, clambered into Lou's Jeep and rolled up the windows as quickly as humanly possible.
       "Damn it, that was quick!" Lou growled in annoyance. "No notice at all. Probably not even a peep from Kailee's knee." He glanced back at her in the rearview mirror.
       "Nah, just got the slightest twinge right before the thunder and lightning went off," she grumbled.
       "Great... I swear, next time it only gives a moment's notice of impending rain, I'm shooting the damn thing," Lou muttered darkly, pulling his keys out of his pocket.
       "Right, Lou... That'll only get you thrown in jail...Along with getting you thrown outta the Corps and have mom and 'dad down your throat." Kailee muttered. Lou simply rolled his eyes as he stuck the Jeep's key in the ignition, turned it, and cursed the resulting clicking loudly and thoroughly.
       "I swear, this piece o' junk hates the fragging rain," Lou grumbled.
       "Or we could just be out of gas," Kailee piped up.
       "Kai, we had half a tank left when we pulled up here," Lou glared at her in the rearview mirror. She shrugged in silent reply. Sean stretched, glancing at the derelict building, forehead creased slightly.
       "Y'know, that place is really starting to creep me out," he said.
       "It's not as bad as a camel spider, though. You gotta admit that much," Lou commented. "Those suckers have gotta be Nature's cast-offs."
       "This place is creepy in a different sense, Lou," Sean grumbled. "It has fragging haunted written all over it."
       "Yeah, it does," Kailee murmured. "Guess we're stuck here 'til the storm clears."
       "What, not gonna use your cell to call a tow truck, sister dear?" Lou sarcastically asked.
       "Not in this weather!" she retorted, anger clearly coloring her words.
       "Fine. Guess we're stuck 'til morning..." Lou muttered, exasperated. They settled in, waiting and watching the storm rage. Lou occasionally tried starting the Jeep, and cursed it when it refused to start. As the light faded, the three started worrying. Lou and Kailee had heard stories about a disappearing, haunted house in the area, and wondered if it had ensnared them. Sean, however, was worried about lightning striking a tree, and causing it to fall on the Jeep.
As it got darker, and the Jeep still refused to start, they started wondering where they could sleep.
"We could sack out in the Jeep. It's gotta be safer, and drier than in that house," Kailee piped up.
"Right, and have both front seats almost flat and effectively squishing you, Kai," Lou commented.
"So? I could just climb in the back. I could stuff the food under the front seats, and curl up," she suggested. "And I don't know about you guys, but I find that place really creepy. It's almost as if something... evil is lurking in there."
"Creepy, yeah, but evil? Nah. And it is safer than sitting in a Jeep in the middle of a raging thunderstorm," Sean said softly.
"Yeah, especially if an even nastier thunderstorm comes through," Lou added. "Anyway, grab your stuff, let's sack out in there."
Kailee, still looking skeptical, followed her brother and Sean into the house with her sleeping bag and book bag, which contained her share of food, flashlights, batteries, Berretta, a couple of extra clips and gun licenses for all three of them. Lou and Sean, after taking a closer look at some of the graffiti on the walls, ran back out to the Jeep, returning a few minutes later with their Berettas and extra clips shoved in their belts.
"What, you two don't feel safe?" Kailee remarked.
"Not with what some of that graffiti says, Kai," Sean said. With that, the three cleared some of the debris from the driest room, and unrolled their sleeping bags around a central camp light, and well away from the two gaping windows and door less entry.
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~
As the rain-drenched darkness closed in completely outside, they ate the food they'd bought at lunch in the dim light, and in relative silence, until Sean piped up with a question.
"So, do either of you know any decent ghost stories?"
Lou and Kailee looked at each other, the same thought clearly going through their minds. Lou nodded at Kailee, since she knew the legend much better than he did.
"Well, it's not really a ghost story as much as it is an urban legend of sorts," Kailee started with her usual preface she used when asked for this ghost story. "When Lou and I lived in Carlisle, we heard stories about a house over on Route 233- the road we're on, just outside Newville that would appear on full moons and Halloween. Usually, Satanic cults would gather on these nights to hold their rituals and such, hence some of the graffiti scrawled on the walls."
As she spoke, a fresh thunderstorm had rolled in and added its voice to the soft counterpoint of the rain.
"But the origins are not satanic, on this the stories agree. The stories say a farmer built the house for himself, his wife and daughter, along with his elderly parents, sometime in the early 19th century. What happens to drive the farmer crazy, and how long it is after the house is completed varies. However, in several stories, one theme is common, but with some variations, depending on the teller. Several years after it reached it’s completed, and the family settled in, his wife decided to leave him for another man. The farmer had been losing it for a while, but this really sent him over the edge. He managed to act sane until the harvest had been gathered. One day after he'd been out at the local tavern drinking, he returned home, drug his parents to the basement, and brutally murdered them. It's said he collected their blood in a large drum, and put it out in the shed." A simultaneous flash of blinding, pale blue lightening and deafening crash of thunder, seemingly right overhead, rattled the walls of the old building.
Kailee watched the two men sitting in front of her in the dim light, noting their reactions. Sean was nervously glancing around the room, and Lou looked like something had dawned on him, although he had heard the story several times before.
"When his only child, who had been home and heard her grandparents screams as her father murdered them, ran out the door to the barn. He heard her, caught her, and drug her into the barn loft. He brutally beat, raped, and strung her up from the rafters."
She paused for a moment, and they looked up as they noticed a low, unearthly moan had started. Kailee glanced at the guys and noticed they were starting to get spooked.
"Guys, it's probably just the wind in the trees. Lord knows there're enough of 'em around here," she said, hoping to calm them down. She fingered the crucifix pendant around her neck, praying that was all it was.
"Once he'd murdered his daughter, some sanity seemed to return, and, seeming to regret what he'd done, he wrote a note stating what he'd done, and his regret over his actions. He also said that Satan had crept into his mind and driven him into the madness in which he'd killed his family. It's said that to this day, the spirits of both the farmer and his murdered daughter haunt the house, and that on the anniversary of the murders, the house appears and relives the entire ghastly event." Kailee finished the story almost whispering, and repressing a shudder at the thought of the yearly horrors. Lou and Sean sat in silence for a few moments, things starting to click in Lou's mind.
"Holy shit, Kai..." muttered Lou.  ”Just how much of that was made up?" he asked, sounding incredulous.
"Most of it I've heard, the rest I researched over at the historical society when we lived here," she replied. "Why?"
"I was just curious. Anyone want to check out the rest of the house?"
"Not in the dark I don't, you crazy idiot!" Kailee exclaimed, sounding shocked. "We don't know how sturdy the joists upstairs are, or if this is the disappearing house," She reasoned, slightly calmer. "If it is, then God only knows what's in here with us."
"Superstitious much, sister dearest?" Lou sarcastically drawled.
"Just a little. But I've got good reason to be," she replied calmly.
"Sure... I’ll believe that when hell freezes over..." Lou muttered, resulting in Kailee rolling her eyes at his continued highly skeptical reaction.
She crawled into her sleeping bag, propping her chin on her forearms and watched her companions argue over various football team's chances to get into the Super Bowl. As she watched them, she noticed a shadow figure pause in the door behind the men, but wrote it off as her imagination, and the darkness in the hall. She turned her attention to the conversation in time to hear them speculating on the Eagles.
"Hey guys, they’re screwed without T.O., and he was enough of a screw up that they’re not gonna take ‘im back no matter what. ‘Sides, it’s ‘bout time the Steelers got one for the thumb."
Both men stared at her, somewhat incredulously. Lou found his voice first and asked, "Have you lost your mind?"
"Nope. The only reason they made it last year was because T.O. was pretty decent," she reasoned.
"True, but they still have time to cultivate talent," Lou argued.
"No they don’t, Lou. They’ve already blown the start of the season, and the Bowl’s in February," Sean argued. Kailee rolled her eyes and listened to them argues a while longer before drifting off to sleep.
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~
Kailee woke with a start a few hours later, and scanned the immediate vicinity for what had woken her, meeting with only the dim shapes of her brother, Sean, and their gear. Glancing through the gaping holes where the windows once were, she only saw thinning clouds, a dilapidated shed she’d noticed earlier, and the stars. Settling back down, she shoved the unease she’d felt to the back of her mind and tried to get back to sleep.
Just as she was slipping into a light doze, a low moan and muttering caught her attention. Blinking a few times, she snapped on the flashlight closest to her, as a crash from the second floor seemed to shake the dilapidated house to its foundations, waking Sean and Lou.
Kailee swallowed a gasp as she saw what appeared to be blood slowly creeping into the room from the hallway. As the men followed her panicked look, a large black figure loomed in the door.
"Spirit, we ask that you allow us to spend the night out of the elements," Kailee’s voice rang out as the form started to move into the room. It paused, seeming to consider her request, then nodded and drifted back into the gloom of the hallway, along with the blood. They released a collective sigh of relief as the oppressive atmosphere was lifted with the specter’s passing.
"Well, that confirmed my suspicions," Kailee murmured. "This is the house those stories were about."
"You just figured that out now, Kai?" Lou asked, somewhat exasperated.
"Wait, what the frell am I missing?" Sean cut in, somewhat confused.
"Yeah, ya probably are. Now, if the spirit doesn’t-" an affirmative moan cut her short, but she went on. “I’ll tell you what I should have included earlier.”
"After the farmer’s death, his younger brother and his family moved in roughly a year later. Roughly a month later, they started having trouble with a poltergeist moving odds and ends around, along with screams from both the basement and third floor. Their youngest daughter reported seeing her cousin sitting at the foot of her bed at night, along with hearing a man’s footsteps coming up the stairs around midnight or one in the morning. The family was found soon after, murdered. They were buried beside the original family. The house was abandoned soon after for about fifty or sixty years.
"At this point, a local priest, had heard stories about the place from younger members of his congregation for a few years and decided to investigate it, with proper approval from his higher-ups, of course. He moved in, and set about restoring it with help from whomever he could hire. None seemed willing to stay more than a week and a half. During this, he kept a diary documenting what he observed along with the renovation’s progress daily for the first several months. But the entries soon became few and far between, and when they were made, indicated his slow descent into madness supposedly because he was being tormented by the spirit of the original owner. Of course, some stories say it was Satan who was disguising himself as the farmer to do so."
Kailee paused to listen for any indication of disapproval from the spectral visitor. None came.
"Eventually, the priest was found dead in the house, and the house was returned to the descendants of the farmer’s brother, who kept the house up as best they could, until it was sold to a man who wanted to renovated it into a bed and breakfast. However the school across the street started making noise about wanting it torn down because kids were breaking in and vandalizing it, having satanic rituals, and all that stuff. Then another person brought up the fact it’s a historic landmark, so the plans were scrapped, and it disappeared, only to reappear on full moons, Halloween and the anniversary of the murder/suicide," she concluded.
A peaceful quiet descended on the house, the only sound the gentle rustle of the breeze in the trees surrounding them. Kailee relaxed when she sensed the spirit’s approval and fading into the light. She was relieved the retelling of what she’d remembered had eased the farmer’s conscious enough to accept his peace.
"You’re joking, right?" Sean asked.
"Nope. That isn’t something I’d joke about," Kailee replied. "Lou might, though."
"No, I wouldn’t!" Lou grumbled.
"Mm-hmm… Sure, Lou." Kai rolled her eyes slightly.


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