Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Ghost · #1777142
Sandy walks into a thrift shop and finds the perfect object to contact her dead husband.
|Sandy hesitated before walking into the little, out-of-the-way shop and felt a strong impulse to walk toward the back. She followed that urge and there, on the highest shelf, she spotted what she was looking for. It's perfect! Her hands shook as she reached out to remove the item from the shelf. Looking at it, it felt right! |
An elderly woman smiled as she stood waiting at the counter, watching the woman approaching. She took the item when handed to her and wrapped it. "What's your name, honey?"
Sandy stepped back, hand over her mouth, shocked to be asked such a question - not wanting to get personal with anyone, she handed the old lady money. "Keep the change." She picked up her package, then left the store.
Sandy felt eyes on her back as she walked towards her car. She chanced a look back to see the old lady's face had a sinister expression that changed when she saw her looking. Sandy got in her car, wanting to get as far away as possible from this place. She made a U-turn and headed toward home.
Sandy arrived home around midnight, berating herself for driving so far for an old Ouija board that may not even work. Hmm, it's funny though, I had no intention to drive that far, but something kept pulling me towards that little shop. Why? She set the package down on the coffee table and sat down on the couch. Should I do it now or wait until tomorrow? Her friend, Kerri, called this the bewitching hour, and glancing at the full moon shining through the patio doors, it did give this moment the right atmosphere.
Why not! She opened the package, her brow furrowed while concentrating on the Ouija board. It sure looked old, and it had writing on it! Squinting, trying to make out what it said, she used her sleeve to rub off some of the dust that collected on it. It glowed a ghastly green for just a second — Shaking her head, "I'm tired, my imagination's playing tricks."
Anxious, she inhaled deeply, letting her breath out slowly, before putting her hand on the dial. She turned it to B, forward to O, then back to... The board began to shake, the dial spun wildly — Sandy jumped up and away from the Ouija board.
When the dial came to an abrupt stop, it spelled out something Sandy couldn't decipher. Puzzled, she put her hand once more on the dial but jerked back when a high-pitched sound echoed outside, shaking the windows. The board shook once more, then stopped. Chills crawled up her arms as she waited for God knows what, her heart beat faster, and her pulse drummed in her ears. An eerie banshee-like call sounded, closer this time. Shaking like a leaf, Sandy crawled underneath her dining room table and cowered there, rocking back and forth chanting, “Bob, Bob, Bob, please come help me.”
Nearby, a figure towered over one of the statues located in the garden. It moved closer and closer toward the house until it could see inside; taking one of its long talons, it scratched D I E in the window.
A crash of thunder, followed by lightning flashes, created a sideshow outside my window. I just got home from my shift at the hospital and kicked off my shoes by the door. I padded into the bathroom to take off my nurse’s uniform and tossed it into the hamper. Stepping inside the shower stall, I let the spray soothe my tired body. Toweling myself dry, I put my long blond hair up into a messy bun and walked into the bedroom. I put on my favorite pink sweats and snatched my book off the night table.
I got comfortable on the couch and began reading where I left off. Half an hour later, the phone rang just as I got into an interesting scene; I moaned, skimming the page to find out what happened. Sighing, I grabbed my phone... “Hello?”
“Oh, Ker-r-r- ri!” My best friend's voice wailed in my ear. “I j-just did something stupid! I purchased this ancient Ouija board from this out-of-way shop the other day …”
I waited for her to go on, realizing I was tapping my toe. I stopped and asked. "Kerri, what's wrong?"
“I bought this Ouija board and played around with it just a wee bit. I turned the dial to B O and then it went crazy on me. I think it c-conjured up something all on its own, I can't explain what? You must see it for yourself. Can you please come?"
I scolded her, “Ouija boards! Come on, Sandy, they’re creepy! Why would you even want to…?”
“I know, I know!” Sandy interrupted. “Don't scold me, Kerri, but it’s the only way I could think of to communicate with Bob. Please come, I’m scar…”
The phone went dead. “Sandy … Sandy … SANDY!” I screamed into the phone. Dropping the phone in disgust, I rushed over to the window, biting my lip as I sized up the weather outside. Oh, how I hated going out into that! I could hear the wind howl through the closed window. The rain was coming down in torrents, making it hard to see out. What should I do? My best friend needed me, and I can't leave her all alone with God knows what. Making up my mind, I didn’t bother to change. just grabbed my raincoat from the hall closet, and scribbled a quick note for my husband, Phil, who was working late tonight at the office. I ran over to the couch to grab my phone, dropped it into my purse, and opened the door. The wind was blowing so hard, I knew it was going to be hard driving, but I belted my raincoat, raising the hood before I slipped back into my shoes. Taking a deep breath, I ran out the door to my car.
I could not see the road and did a lot of judging where it was. I prayed I would make it to Sandy's without any mishaps. Even though it was still raining hard, I turned onto Sandy's tarred road forty-five minutes later. Thinking about her call tonight — Why would she play around with something that she didn’t know anything about? What was she thinking? I knew she missed Bob, but I never expected her to try conjuring him.
Up ahead, I could see the shadow of twin silos that belonged to Sandy’s neighbor. He always had around five-yard lights lighting up his spacious yard and passing by his place, I saw a huge bird-like shadow flying up over the top of the barn, over the silos, and the treetops before disappearing. Staring upwards in disbelief, I felt my front tires sink into the side of the road. Snapping my attention back on my driving, I turned the wheel, getting all my tires back on the tarred road. Whew! I don’t want to be stuck out here with that thing flying overhead. I checked the treetops once more, needing a reasonable explanation as to what on earth could be that large and still fly?"
Shaking my head, I started the car and continued down the road toward Sandy’s home, my attention still on the sky. I turned onto her driveway and made my way up to the beautiful, white marble pillars that I always admired. I stopped the car under the carport and noticed that Sandy was waiting by the door. I waved, reached inside for my keys, and pushed the remote button to lock my car, then ran over to hug her but she pulled me inside and slammed the door, “Oh, Keri, I’m so glad you’re here.”
“I came as quick as I could.” I couldn't believe my eyes as I stared at my elegant friend. Her hair was uncombed, her fingernails chewed to the bone, some even looked as if they were even bleeding, and her eyes looked swollen with mascara still clinging to her eyelashes. “Sandy, I’m here now, come on, let’s sit down and talk about it." I gently put my arm around her and guided her to the couch. Papers were strewn everywhere, books half opened on her coffee table, and cigarette butts were half in and half out of the ashtray. Great! She started to smoke again. Her house, always so neat and clean, looked every bit as disheveled as she did.
“I should never have bought that stupid thing!” Big teardrops fell down her cheeks onto her robe. “That Ouija board is possessed, I just know it! Do you know how I know it? I keep throwing it into the trash can outside, but somehow it keeps finding its way back inside. It’s creeping me out!”
Sandy looked so forlorn and scared, worry wrinkled the skin around her eyes and on her brow. I had to ask to be sure. “Are you sure you threw the Ouija board out?"
“Yes, I threw it out!” she shrieked, staring daggers at me.
“Okay, Okay, I believe you,” I said, patting her hand, trying to calm her down.
She took a huge breath and began telling me what happened. “Well, it all started a couple of days ago when I found this out-of-the-way shop that seemed to beckon me to it. When I entered, the pull was so strong, before I knew it, I was staring at this ancient Ouija board. I thought this would have the power to bring Bob back to me. I paid this spooky little old lady and left, feeling as if I found what I’d been looking for. Oh, how I couldn’t wait to get home."
“Oh, Sandy, I know you missed Bob, but I didn’t realize how much.”
Nodding her head, she continues. Being that I drove more miles than I thought, it was around twelve when I got home, the bewitching hour. I should have waited until the next day, but I was so sure I'd be seeing Bob again that I became impatient. I set up the Ouija board and began turning the dial, I got to O when it went all crazy on me, spelling out a name I didn't catch. The letters flew by so fast, and they wouldn't let me stop them. A few minutes later, I heard these horrendous shrieks outside, kinda high pitched, you know, like a banshee. Then it stopped. A half-hour later, it began again and wouldn't stop! I called my neighbors when that horrible noise stopped, wondering if they heard anything out of the ordinary. They hadn’t, so I wondered if I must be losing my mind,” Sandy gave a huge shuddering sigh, then laid her head on my shoulder.
“You know, I did see a large flying object as I drove past your neighbor’s place,” I confided.
“Oh my god, it’s true then!” Sandy jumped up, shaking her finger at me. “I've been seeing this horrible creature flying overhead when I go outside. It's as if he’s stalking me and won't leave me in peace."
“What exactly is it?”
“Well, I don't know exactly, but it looks evil. It's got these red eyes that seem to glow in the dark, it sort of resembles a Mothman in appearance. You know, the one they showed on the Discovery Channel."
"A Mothman!” I tried making some sense of this. "Sandy, they’re not evil. I heard they warn people of danger, you don't need to fear it. Maybe this thing is warning you about something."
“I said it resembles a Mothman," Sandy sighed. "It shrieks like a banshee, it dived-bombed me a couple of times, so I know it means me harm. If it’s trying to intimidate me, it's working, because I'm scared to death!"
“I know it’s hard to lose someone you loved so much. I think I'll call Phil; he should be home from his meeting by now." I walked toward the phone, but Sandy stopped me midway.
"Kerri, don’t you remember? The phone’s dead.”
"Oh, damn it, that's right, so I'll use my cell pho..." I groaned, "Great! I left my phone in the car!"
Sandy rocked back and forth, wringing her hands, moaning, “What are we going to do now?”
“Calm down, I’ll run out to my car and be back before you know it."
"I'm coming with you; I'm not staying here by myself.”
Hearing the strain in her voice, I nodded okay. I really couldn’t blame her for being scared because I didn't want to be alone either. Opening the door, I stepped out with Sandy who closed the door behind us. We did a count 1 2 3 Go! We raced to the car, and I tried opening the car door.
My hands were shaking so badly that I couldn’t even grasp the handle. Remembering that I locked the door when I arrived, I cursed. "Damn it! The door's locked!" Hitting the top of the car hard with my hand, I shrank back when Sandy gasped. Happy about being under a carport, I said, "We have no choice but to go back and get my purse." I turned and led the way towards the entranceway with Sandy sticking to me like glue. When I tried to open the door, I found that it was locked too.
"Oh, no! I decided to have the doors automatically lock since that creature showed up. I usually carry the key with me, but I wasn’t thinking. This whole experience has left me scatterbrained. What are we going to do?”
"Sandy, I know you’ve been through so much already, but you need to think of a safe, warm place for us to stay. It's way too dark to walk over to your neighbors, and I don’t want to freeze.”
"Well, t-there's a storm cellar and a p-potting shed on the south side of the house."
Staying in the shadows, we walked along the house until reaching the corner. I checked... Nothing... Signing to Sandy that we were going to make a run for it, an eerie, high-pitched sound echoed through the night sky. Softly crying, Sandy stared helplessly at me as I pushed her back into the shadows. I chanced another peek but didn’t see the creature anywhere.
An ear-splitting banshee screech sounded way too close for comfort, and I decided that it was now or never. I took off as fast as my feet would go toward the storm shelter with Sandy glued to my hip. I looked up now and then, hoping it wouldn't pounce. A loud and distinct whooshing and flapping sounded overhead, followed by another ear-piercing screech making itself known. Sandy, shaking like a leaf, clutched at my sleeve when the creature landed right on top of the entryway to the storm shelter, blocking our way. Could that thing read minds? That's a scary scenario.
It stood there staring, its evil red eyes glared at us, daring us to approach. Terrified, we didn't know if we should run or wait to see what it would do. There wasn't any other place to go now but the potting shed behind us. I made a sign to back up. Just barely pulling herself together, Sandy stepped back while I followed, and we kept doing this slowly and steadily, not wanting to draw his attention to what we were trying to do; unfortunately, it didn't work. It caught on and every time we took a step back, the creature took a step forward. I said a prayer and turned and thankfully, Sandy did the same. I could feel its hot breath on my back making me push Sandy to go faster. Just as I dived for the potting shed's door, sharp claws dug into the skin on my shoulder, stopping my progress. An excruciating pain overtook me, and I screamed bloody murder. He held me in this manner, seeming to enjoy my struggles. I could feel blood running down my back, and my shirt became drenched with my sweat and blood when suddenly, he let me go, and I collapsed to the ground.
The creature had turned his attention to Sandy, who was running toward the house. His claw grabbed her by her collar, yanking her towards him and when he looked ready to take flight, I screamed at Sandy, “Untie your belt and slip out of the robe.”
Sighing with relief when she did what I advised, she escaped just as the creature flew up with her robe still in his clutches. Running towards me with so much speed, we both stumbled inside the potting shed and collapsed on the bench. Sandy shook so badly that she had a hard time opening my shirt to check my injuries.
“Thank you for your quick thinking, I thought I was a goner.” Sandy walked over to a medicine cabinet and came back to clean my wounds with disinfectant. She put a salve on my deep cuts and secured a bandage in place.
“Ahhh, that feels better already! Thank you.” Shaking out my damp shirt, not wanting to put it back on, I tossed it into the garbage. I thought about our predicament and felt at a loss for what to do next.
"Oh, my God, we are going to die, aren’t we?" Sandy gave voice to my fears.
“No!” I said forcefully, determined that I wasn’t going to go down without a fight. I checked out the potting shed. "B-bob didn't own any weapons, did he?"
"No-o — wait — he did have a compound bow, but it's stored in the basement with all his other stuff."
"Great! I suppose there isn't any way we can get to it," I asked, my hope draining away.
"We could break a window!" Sandy jumped up, excited that she thought of something helpful.
"Do you know how to shoot the compound bow if we do find it?" I asked Sandy as I walked over to the door.
"I practiced with Bob many times," Sandy said. "I don't know, it's been five years, but I think I still have the strength to shoot it."
"We'll wait until the time comes to deal with that problem; right now, all we have to do is make it to your patio door." I opened the door to the potting shed and looked around to make sure our unwanted guest was nowhere to be seen. Nothing... We both dashed to the side of the house. The sky looked brighter now without the rain clouds and with the moon shining down, we could see the way. Which meant, the creature could see us, too.
Staying in the shadows, we moved around the house and made it to Sandy’s pride and joy, her gardens. As we hovered near the patio door, I looked around for something to throw. Spotting a large planter nearby, I bent to see if I could pick it up when I smelled something foul… That’s weird! I took a whiff of the pot when I felt large drops splashing down on my bare skin. I looked up, wondering if it started to rain again, and my whole body shook, in shock at what I saw. There on the roof, its red evil eyes staring down at me as its mouth dripped saliva. I screamed.
At the same time, Sandy checked the patio door to see if it would open. When she heard me scream, her adrenaline kicked in and pushed at the patio door. It opened just as a whooshing, flapping sound from above made us both fall inside the house. Jumping up, I quickly closed and locked the door.
"That thing just won’t leave us alone,” Sandy said, as we both crawled out of sight.
Wasting no time, we made our way around toward the basement door. Opening it, we walked down the steps. "You kept all of Bob's belongings!" I exclaimed when I noticed boxes and boxes of stuff which took up two-thirds of the basement area.
"I couldn't part with any of his stuff," Sandy wistfully looked around at Bob's belongings. She spotted a large box that might hold the compound bow and went over to check it out. “Found it!” Sandy held up the bow. “See, aren’t you glad I kept all his stuff.”
“Yes, we at least have a chance now.” Spotting the arrows, I grabbed the carrying case they were in and took off upstairs.
"We’ll hunt it down," Sandy squared her shoulder and straightened her pajama tops as she followed Kerri up the steps.
Upstairs, I walked towards the patio door… Jumping back out of sight. "The creature’s perched on your large statue. Let’s sneak up behind him and shoot him?” I said.
“I’ll do it! I want him dead and gone.” Taking the arrows from me, she stalked towards the kitchen door.
Sandy led the way around the house and once more we were close to the patio doors. She inserted the bow, and pulled back…
She jumped out, ready to attack. The creature, on the ground, turned and saw her. He stalked towards her...
Oh, no! Seeing Sandy’s hand shaking so badly that she almost dropped the arrow, I said a prayer to give her strength. She straightened her back, pulling back once more, and released the arrow. It flew straight toward the creature and I prayed the arrow would find his heart. It slid deep into its shoulder instead and a wounded banshee cry echoed throughout the garden. We watched as it flew towards the wooded area.
Sandy’s frowned, “I should have taken better aim, but my hands were shaking so badly.”
“You did the best you could, we’ll get him next time.” I walked into the house to grab my keys. I needed to call Phil and let him know what we were dealing with here.
“You’re not leaving me here by myself with that thing still on the loose, are you?
“No, I’m just going to get my cell phone.” Oh, how I did want to take off and forget this happened, but I grabbed my purse and ran back to the house.
I dialed Phil and told him what happened. Panicking, fearing for my safety, he couldn’t believe his ears on what we had gone through. “I’m calling the authorities, then I'll be coming to get you and Sandy."
“Okay, I can’t wait until that thing is caught. He’s evil and aiming to kill Sandy; maybe me too."
I turned to see Sandy sprawled out on the couch. I wondered how much sleep she got with that thing hanging around. I walked into the kitchen and made myself some tea to calm down. I was famished and decided to make myself a sandwich. Sandy came in a little later and poured herself some tea.
“I’m going to take that Ouija Board back to where I found it,” Sandy said.
“I think that would be best. It’s possessed by some kind of evil spirit. But then I wonder what happens when some other poor unsuspecting person buys it and goes through the very same thing we’re going through. We'll dump it in the Pacific Ocean."
“Good, we’ll take Bob’s yacht out and toss it in. You know, when I got him in the shoulder, he yelled bloody murder. I was lying there thinking and concluded that if that was Bob, he's not what I remembered him to be.”
"Hey, that thing is not Bob! No one would ever believe us in a million years when we tell them what happened.” I walked over to the big bay window and looked up at the sky.
Sandy came up beside me and we both watched the beautiful sunrise. Something caught my eye, a shadow or something moved in the garden. Then I saw it, there, perched on the large watering fountain moaning softly. Sandy saw it too just then and walked over to retrieve her weapon without saying a word. "This is my property and he is not wanted here!" She ran through the house and outside. I returned to the window to watch and saw the creature was no longer there. I had to help Sandy. When I reached the gardens, I couldn’t find her anywhere. I checked all around the area, she was nowhere in sight. I walked over to the watering fountain. Her crossbow and arrows were lying there as if tossed down in anger. I wondered, why didn’t she scream to warn me she was in danger.
Phil showed up with the authorities just then and I ran through the house, into his arms screaming and crying that I couldn’t find Sandy anywhere. “Shhhh, come on, I’ll help you look. “
A thorough check was issued, and while the police checked, so did we. I guided him over to the storm cellar and checked inside. Nothing. The potting shed turned up nothing either. As we checked the basement, the upstairs, the hall closets, and the attic, we couldn’t find any sign of Sandy anywhere. I couldn’t believe it, my best friend was there one moment and gone the next. I needed to do something, so I began tidying up her house as best I could. Phil went out to join the search. I took the Ouija Board down to the basement and tucked it into one of Bob’s boxes along with his crossbow and arrows. When there was nothing else to do, I looked around at what I’d accomplished. The house was neat as a pin once more, but empty, so empty.
Phil came up to me and told me it was time to go. I took one more look around, said a prayer that she would be found, then walked outside with Phil. He drove me home while a cop friend of ours drove my car.
Each night thereafter I prayed that Sandy would be found but to no avail. I kept wishing she would suddenly appear and be okay. It took me a while, but I finally went back to work.
One night, coming home late from the hospital, I walked into an empty house, Phil was at a late-night board meeting. Sighing, I turned on the lights, and put my purse and keys on the hall table … That’s when I noticed this glowing object on the couch. I walked over to check it out and gasped, jumping back in fright. What was Sandy's Ouija Board doing here? As I kept staring at it as if it would bite, the indicator began turning slowly, spelling out the letters S A N D Y in blood-red letters. Afterward, the board glowed a ghastly green color, then disappeared
I sat there staring at where it once sat, wondering... I knew I put that thing in Sandy’s basement. Am I losing my mind? How did it get over to my home? I became frightened, knowing in my heart that I would be seeing that Ouija Board again. Sandy knew it was possessed and now I know it's possessed. Oh no! Trembling, gasping for breath, a horrible thought entered my mind... Will I be the next person to turn up missing?