Life draining darkness, pouring through the souls of the dead and damned.
Loss of love and making of new horrors arrive. Twenty-first century damnation into a house of age.
He stared into the tablet monitor, watching outside the front door, one autumn evening, he stared blankly into it, not caring to blink, not once. His mom came to him from behind, confused she walked to him, patting his shoulder.
“Hey baby, what are you looking at?” He looked up to his mother, smiling and blinking.
“I’m waiting for James momma.” He looked back to the monitor which only showed the wind blowing the trees and leaves scattering.
The woman went to the kitchen where her husband is preparing the dinner entree, barbequed tri-tip meat, with the side of mashed potatoes and green beans. Hawaiian rolls added to this meal with a pitcher of crisp lemonade. The woman, grasping her left arm walks to her husband confused and worried.
“Hey babe, the meat is almost ready, I just need to-” His comment was interrupted by him observing his wife’s appearance. She held her sweater sleeve as it covered the scars on her arms, she had a distraught look on her face. “Hun what’s wrong?” The man asked reaching to hold her waist.
“H-he was just talking about- about James.” She said hesitantly. “He must be taking this hard on him b-but I don’t know, could he be imagining things?”
“Babe you know kids, they’ll just make up things to escape reality. Remember how we were as teenagers?” The man spoke, trying to cheer her up with a couple nudges.
“Yeah I guess you’re right. But what’ll happen when he realizes that he’s, that he’s dead.” She said worried. The man sighed and shrugged his arms. He continued slicing the meat and preparing the food onto the table.
The dead boy the woman was referring to was a boy named James, a young boy who was best friends with the little boy until he was fatally injured and later killed in a car accident. He was the only casualty in the hit and run incident, not even the driver, his father, was injured. James had charcoal black hair that was shaggy and dirty most of the time, his jeans were usually ripped due to the amount of time he spent in the dirt on his knees. He was a pigpen you could say, but many people thought he was adorable and very polite. Unlike many kids their age who would wear name brand shirts or shirts with designs on them, James would wear blank shirts with a solid color, that way he wouldn’t get anything ripped or dirty, he would just wear a plain color like red, blue or black. Very occasionally would he wear white, just so happens that they say he was killed, he was wearing white, but there was no occasion that day, he just felt like wearing it that day.
As the father served dinner, almost finished in fact, he heard the front door open, he thought it was his wife but she had gone to the restroom not too long before. It was his son, opening the door letting the autumn breeze in for a couple seconds before closing it and rushing upstairs. That was weird, the father thought. He went back to work until his wife, who had just returned, asked what the noise was. He told her what happened and then suspiciously walked upstairs to see what her little boy was up to. Each step she took up the carpet coated stairs only made it more creepy for her, she could hear her son’s laughter muffled in his room. The creaking of the steps only made it worse as she headed her way up. She reached the top but froze as she saw something in the mirror, it looked like the same substance as fog. She rubbed her fingers onto the glass, she rubbed her fingers together but as she did so, it didn’t turn wet like water at all, it felt thick and some what sticky. She smelled it and it gave off a metallic stench, she licked it and it gave off a blood flavor. Shocked, she looked back at the mirror as the same substance turned red and spelt out in horrific words, I’M BACK, it said. She looked closer until she saw something behind her in the mirror, she shot back looking at her surroundings, but saw nothing. She shook her head and look back to the mirror, the red, blood-like substance had disappeared.
She walked past the mirror towards her son’s room, shaken up she listened closely to the door as she tries to make out what her son is saying, she couldn’t make it out perfectly so she opened the door. She walked in completely weirded out. Her son was on the floor in a handmade fort made of blankets, sheets, towels, almost anything that could cover someone up, and tied to chairs and bedposts.
“Honey? Who were you talking to?” She asked. Her son jumped up to his mother walking in.
“Mom! You scared me!” He tried to catch his breath as he responded to her question. “I was talking to James, he has an amazing stories.” His mother looked shocked and scared, her hair stood up and looked to her son. “Want to listen?” He said innocently. She shook his head and told him no. She began to close the door until she stopped.
“Dinner will be done soon, get cleaned up and ready to eat.” She told him then closing the door. She rushed downstairs terrified and ran to her husband. He held her close to his body as she vented the scary incident to him. Shocked, her husband held her close and promised her that he’d talk to their son.
It was time for dinner, the young boy walked to his chair and sat down. Dinner was fine like usual, the parents didn’t try to ask their son about James until their son brought him up. He was reciting a poem that James had just taught him.
“Laughing, laughing, the sound of children goes, the devil I may be, for now I eat their souls.” His parents look with complete shock as he continues the second verse, “Laughing, laughing, the sound of children goes, for hell this world shall be, where all the demons roam.” Terrified and shocked, the parents demanded the boy where he found that poem, he told them it was James who had told him. They interrupted the meal and rushed him to their psychiatrist, worried that he might be going insane or having some mental problem or disorder. No way could he had just made up that poem, something was really wrong with him. An hour passed and the doctor came back to the parents, who sat in the hallway.
“Well, he seems perfectly fine. He has the same case as a lot of boys and girls his age. Once they lose someone close to him, James correct? They’ll make up their existence until they can cope with them being gone, like an imaginary friend, you could say.” He explained to them to give him time to “cope” with his loss and help him cope with it as well.
They arrived back home without a word being said in the car, neither music playing, which the father loves listening to as he drives, but in this case, no music was on. They opened the door to their house and were stopped in their tracks. The wallpaper had marks in them, reaching from the roof to the floor, like claw or a knife mark. The furniture were thrown across the room and some upside down, picture frames broken and other figurines and antics shattered. There was nothing than that but the words on the wall in front of the door saying WHY ARE YOU TRYING? HES MINE in the same red liquid seen on the mirror.
The father called 9-1-1 and when the police arrived nothing could be found, no DNA, hair samples, footprints, nothing. The red substance seemed to be pigs blood and no fingerprints could be seen in the blood. That night the family went to the nearest hotel as the police kept their house as a crime scene, although there was no evidence of any break-in or activity.
The father stayed up that night, making sure nobody is coming for his family, he had nothing to eat for dinner, and no rest. The next day the father had to ship off to work early in the morning, with no sleep and an empty stomach. He went down the freeway and realized the music on the radio was having static, he attempted to find a stable radio station to listen to, there was no hope. He kept searching but it just seemed to make the static louder, he decided to turn the radio off but it wouldn’t become silent. He became paranoid at this point and began giving the radio his full focus. Seconds later he hears his name being screamed out by what seemed to be his wife as he looked up to see a car frozen in its tracks. He rammed into the car and was killed almost instantly from the impact, metal had stabbed him, from the car in front of him into his chest stabbing straight into his lungs and cutting his spinal cord. Blood poured out his mouth like rabies and his eyes each had a tear going down, his final breath was given as he hears the radio speaking in a high-pitched, almost like his son’s, voice.
“How does it feel to die in a car accident, and now your son’ll be mine.” The phantom says as the radio dies off and the father lays dead in the driver’s seat of his car, the only fatality in the accident.
The mother, at this time, had woken up to her husband leaving for work and decided to let her son sleep. She got in the bathroom and undressed herself. She turned on the shower and stepped in. The steam rushed in her lungs like venom in a bloodstream, the lotiony water soothed her overstressed muscles and skin. She looked at the faintly clear shower door through the fog and steam and saw a shadow, thinking it was her son, she called out for him. The figure responded to her words with a single tilt of it’s head. She called over and over until she realized something was wrong, it wasn’t her son. She quickly shut off the shower then looked back at where the figure was standing, but it was gone, in confusion she looked around, then she saw on the floor, by itself, was a single stainless steel kitchen knife on the ground, the tip was covered in blood, she stared shocked until everything was interrupted with her screams. The shower water had been turned on again but in extreme heat, in attempt to flee the mother slipped and fell with her head hitting the bathtub rim. She had painfully drowned in over heated water. The water wrinkled, pinkened, and burned her whole body.
An hour passed and the boy had awoken from his slumber, he looked to the other bed in the hotel room and confusedly looked at the empty bed. He got up and walked around, calling for his mom. The calling continued for minutes until he saw his friend, James.
“Hey James, have you seen my parents? I’ve been looking for a while, and I can’t seem to find them.” The boy tells the phantom.
“Yeah,” The faint figure of a boy says, “they left a while ago but will be back, they went to get breakfast.”
“Oh, okay. Oww” The boy says as he holds his forehead. “I have a headache.” the boy moans as James looks at him.
“Oh it’s okay, I got you.” He says as he pulled aspirin out of the mother’s purse. “Here, you take some.” The boy grabs the bottle and notices it’s a full bottle and then asks James how much he should take. He had never taken real pills for headache medicine before but he felt safe with James telling him how much. “Take the whole bottle, okay.” The boy became confused, but it seemed to him like James was telling the truth, it did seem like something adults would do, but since it was his first time, the boy agreed with James. He opened up the bottle and looked at them, they were small orange circular pills. They each had about five numbers on them, the boy shot up.
“Oh! I almost forgot to get a water bottle.” The boy got up and grabbed a water bottle from the fridge and opened it, then took a sip. He walked back and sat on the foot of the bed. He picked out one pill and stared at it, then swallowed it with a sip of water, then another, then another. One, two, three pills, going on ten, now fifteen. By his seventeenth he felt nauseous and his vision became blurry. He called out for James but no one answered, he heard only one small chuckle.
“Don’t worry, now we can play, and your parents won’t get in the way. We can play forever.” James says. The boy falls down onto the bed, dead and cold. Foam swam out of his mouth like a waterfall, his skin turned pale, and his eyes to the back of his head. He’s gone from this world, they all are.
Two hours later and police arrive to the hotel room to inform the mother that her husband had died in a car accident. They reach her hotel door, knocked, but no one answered. They went up to the front desk and asked if they had left the room at any time. The woman, about in her mid-twenties with long blonde hair only told the officers that she had only seen the father leave for work. The police became worried and asked if she could open the door for them to investigate. The woman grabbed the keys and walked the officers up to the room. Once she opened it, a rush of hot, humid, rotting stenches of all sort came at them. The first sight they see is the boy on the bed, he had died hours before the officers came, flies ate at his body as foam still possessed his mouth and the eyes have died long ago. They open the bathroom door and see the horrific sight, the mother dead, pink, and with wrinkles all over her body in the empty bathtub, with only the bloody knife on the floor and blood coming down from the back of her head.
Months pass and the world still turns, the birds chirp and children still play in the playgrounds. The crows still fly and the graveyards are still silent. But one grave won’t be so silent to the rest of the world, the one whose body is named James Capps April 17 2000 to May 7 2007. The one next to it, Brian Carroll, January 2, 2000 to May 17, 2007, next to his parents John and Mary Carroll. Some say James still haunts that house, killing more children one after another. So might I ask, do you believe in ghost stories?