“No, no… no… no… no… no… arrrgh… no… grrrr… no…”
My fingers pressed the piano keys and I tried not to get all annoyed. I was determined to learn a second song and it wasn’t going well, but it was a BEAUTIFUL song and I LOVED it and decided it was my favorite song. And it was a song just for piano. And I was going to learn it. Maybe. Hopefully.
I had discovered how to make the disks move slower and I played it as slow as I could, listening carefully to the sounds and mimicking them as best I could. I wasn’t too good at my fingers doing two different things at once and the song had a lot of that. I needed plenty of time and patience and…
“What?” I looked up, feeling a bit strange. Like this weird feeling in my tummy, like when I was scared but not quite. I lowered the lid of the piano and turned off the music player. This house was pretty creepy and sometimes I imagined some of the paintings changed, but this was different. I wasn’t sure what it was, but it felt… like… I dunno. I drifted down the stairs and began looking for what was out of place. I couldn’t find anything and was gonna go to the first floor when I saw something out the front windows. I peeked, feeling my insides going nuts. It was a big van. It had pulled up to the house and people were getting out.
I cussed out loud and wondered what was going on. Was someone moving in? I didn’t want to go! I wanted to stay with the piano and music player. Crap! The player! I went through the floor and began putting the disks into the box. I closed it all up and then was about to hide when I realized something. I cussed again and went down to one of the closets, carefully pulling out some sheets. I took them upstairs and shook the dust out on top of the record player and the piano bench, since the dust had pretty much gone away from my use of everything. Then I shook some out on the bed, folded up the sheets and put them deep into the closet.
I heard sounds downstairs. People. Living people. I faded into invisibility and went to the stairs, being as non-solid as I ever had been before. “…place all right,” said one of the people in a serious voice. “According to local legend, this place has been haunted for the past fifty years. What do you say…?”
“Oh, it’s haunted ah’right,” said an older person. “I first came in here thirty years ago on a dare an’ I heard things and saw things…”
They talked about this house for a while, talking in the weirdest way as if they were… oh my gosh. I floated a bit closer and peeked out into the hall where they all were. One of them had a big video recorder. They were filming something. I stared at the group of people, watching as they began getting closer. I went upstairs as they wandered around the bottom floor then I moved to the third floor when they went to the second. They were part of a TV show, from what I understood. They went into haunted places and captured evidence. Oh good. They weren’t here to live. Still, I needed to be careful.
“This is the most haunted part of the place.” I ducked behind the piano as the group came to the third floor, narrowing my eyes when all the lights were turned on. “They say sometimes you can hear a ghost playing the piano over there.” I had to stuff my fist in my mouth to stop from giggling. Too true, that one was. “Well, that’s strange…”
“What is it?”
“The old phonograph. And those boxes. They’ve been moved.”
“When were you last here?”
“A year ago, they were downstairs.”
“I think we’ve found some evidence, guys. This is serious shit.”
“Man. We need to really focus on this room… hey, Bradley, you gonna stay up here all night, yeah?”
“Hah, and listen to the ghost play music? Sure. Er, it’s not dangerous is it…?”
“Well, some people who have come here have had problems. I knew a girl who came here not long ago who reported getting scratches on her face…”
They talked about people getting hurt for a while then left. I moved out from behind the piano and saw some tape marking ‘x’ on the floor and there was a fold out chair set up now. I folded my arms and scowled. Dangitall! Now I couldn’t practice the piano tonight if they were going to be here. I felt like kicking the chair or removing the ‘x’ but decided better of it. If they didn’t think this place was haunted, they might not want to come back. I didn’t think they were real ghost hunters, just… ghost… peopleness… like the guy who had taken my picture before. They just wanted evidence.
The problem was… well, this place was sorta haunted. Not just by me but sometimes I did hear things. Movement. Scratches. Footsteps. Nobody bothered me though so I figured it was either my imagination or the mysterious type of ghost. I had heard rumors of ghosts that were closer to the Netherworld than most, yet more in this world than most. They couldn’t even really be properly seen though they might be heard. They barely interact with the world around them and often go about their daily business. I figured they were like, um, the movie with, um, whats-her-name and the kids and the house and the servants. I liked the movie a lot… er… OTHERS! That was it. ‘The Others’. I wondered if there was someone else in this house with me, but they never bothered me so I wasn’t worried about it.
Except if they were here, and these people did capture evidence… would they keep coming back? Would other people come back? I hoped not. I wanted to be at peace with my piano and not have to worry about the living going in and out randomly.
The guys came back just as it got dark. I sat in the upstairs room behind the piano, legs folded, arms crossed, a scowl on my face. I listened as they got closer to the third floor. I figured they were setting things up and soon they came up to this floor, setting up cameras and stuff. “Okay, there are two ghosts in this house for sure,” someone said.
I looked up. Two, huh? Did that include me?
“There’s a little girl, who died when this house was brand new. And there’s a man. He’s the one that causes harm to others. We think the girl haunts this upstairs room and the man haunts the first floor but we’ll make sure to cover all the floors…”
The lights were on but after ten or so minutes, the lights were turned off. I went down to the first floor since that’s where they were and all right… so I was a bit curious. They were sitting in the living room, talking to the ghosts. “Mr. Miller? We’re not here to hurt you. We’re just interested in getting to know you. We heard you fell down those stairs right there and hit your head, and you’ve been angry about your brother and wife getting married after you di–“
“WHOAHWOAHWOAHAOHAOAA!!” I flinched as one guy made the weirdest sound. He jumped to his feet, pointing to something near where I was. “The EMF reacted! He’s here. John Miller is here with us…”
I looked around but saw nothing. There was a little box near me with five little dots that lit up–or at least, the first two were lighting up. I moved away and the dots faded. Hmm. I moved closer and they lit up again. The third one lit up too. I moved away and they faded. The guys were all staring through the darkness and I knew they couldn’t see me so I decided maybe this could be fun. I got real close and all five dots lit up and I moved away and they all faded. I tried not to laugh.
“John, we know it’s hard, we know how angry you are. We know you’re here with us and if you wanna get mad, get mad. Throw something. Hit us. Hit Tommy here.” One of the guys indicated another guy. “Hit him as hard as you can, push him, scratch him. We heard you like to hurt people. You hurt a girl, but you’re too scared to hurt a grown man? You’re a coward, you know. Come on! Come at me!”
“Get some pictures.”
I dove away as fast as I could just as I heard clicky sounds. I decided to lay off for a bit and went to the top room, but it wasn’t long until they were up there, talking to the little girl. They left a ball and a doll on the floor as well as one of those little boxes with lights, then left. I stayed where I was though grew pretty bored. Soon the guys were up there again, talking about something to do with heat and light and spectrum and stuff. I floated down through the floor since they were taking more pics but then moved back up since a couple guys came into the bedroom. One of the guys was in the fold out chair just chilling, watching the piano.
“You like playing the piano, sweetie?” he asked.”You can play if you want. I’d love to hear you. I bet you’re real good. Here.” He got up and went to MY piano and lifted the key cover thing. “Is this better? Here, play something for me.” He sat back down and focused on the piano. I wondered what he’d do if I did touch a key but I easily resisted the urge to do so.
“Hey, uh, Bradley?” It was a voice over the radio. “When you, uh, got up and, uh, went to the piano we saw, uh, movement. To the left of the piano.” I squinted. It couldn’t be me, the piano was to my right. “We uhhh saw a bit of movement, almost like a shadow.”
“Okay, I’ll check it out.” Bradley got up and came over. I quickly moved away, feeling like a complete idiot. The piano was on my right, so I was to its left. Duhhhh.
“Hey, uhhh, Bradley, we saw more movement. You went over and a shadowy bit thingie moved to the other side and faded, and uh, it disappeared. It’s gone now. You had company up there but I think she’s gone.”
I scowled. She indeed. Little girl indeed. I folded my arms and then went down to the second floor to the guy talking. I’m not a little girl, I thought, fuming at him. I wanted to say I was a guy but didn’t dare. Except the guy was reacting. “I think someone’s here with us,” he whispered, holding up a little box. “Hello? Is someone there?” Yes, meanie. “I’m not gonna hurt you…” You’re annoying me, I wanna play my piano! “Are you the little girl…? Or are you John?” I’M NOT A LITTLE GIRL! “I heard something! I think I heard something, like a tiny sound right here… Is someone here?” He indicated where I was and I sighed without meaning to. I then covered my mouth. “I definitely heard something.”
Idiot. I was referring to myself now, and quickly slid down to the first floor and huddled in the closet where I found the music player and boxes. I remained there, grumbly and annoyed for hours, trying not to go to sleep. Eventually I left and found the guys, they were all in the kitchen now. Trying to contact John again. I counted to make sure they were ALL there and then drifted up to the top room. I went through the floor and remained behind the piano until morning, when they left.
I went all over the place to make sure everything was gone. No equipment stuff left. I got the disks out and put some Mozart into the music player–the phonograph. I listened to it and tried to calm down from the annoying night. It was over and hopefully it wouldn’t happen again, except two days later they were back. I was asleep and woke up in the middle of the afternoon feeling real strange and there the van was. This time there was a woman with them. I quickly put the disks back in the boxes then went down to the first floor, watching invisibly as they went into the living room. They had a table set up and a laptop, and were filming as they showed the woman the evidence they found.
I saw the fun with ‘EMF’ I had, the box with lights. I didn’t see any sign of me. I saw the shadow and light near the piano I caused. I also found something else out: while on the first floor and I wasn’t there, they heard scratchy noises. Similar to the kind I sometimes heard. I also saw a photograph with a strange light, and then finally the ‘EVP’ recording thingie when I was in the bedroom and sighed. You could hear a sound, almost like a voice whispering something (they insisted it said ‘not’ but I didn’t hear it) and then you could very clearly hear my sigh.
“Judging from all this evidence, we have to say the Miller house is definitely haunted,” the guy told the woman.
“Wow. I always thought it was,” she said. “I’m glad to know for sure now.”
“You ever going to restore it?”
“No. I think I’ll keep it like it is. Maybe I’ll give tours.” NOOOOOO! “But maybe not. We’ll see how the economy goes, ha-ha.”
Soon they left and the van was gone and everyone was gone and I was once more alone. I waited for some time then went upstairs and began playing the piano. I hoped the woman–the owner?–wouldn’t give tours. I hoped this place was left in peace. I liked it here very much and I loved the piano and music. If this place was taken over by the living then… well, the only thing I could really do was move back to Sunset Valley and beg for a piano and beg for recordings of the music I wanted.
Maybe I could be taught the piano, I thought, watching my fingers move across the keys. I didn’t want to leave here anytime soon, but it was something to certainly think about… if I was kicked out of this place.
I was left in peace for a couple weeks and then one night when playing the piano–trying to get this song right–I got that feeling inside me. I went down to the second floor and looked out the window. I saw flashlights coming closer to the house. Sighing, I went upstairs and put away all the disks and closed the piano. I hoped whoever was holding the flashlights would just keep going but soon I heard them inside. They sounded like kids, not much younger than me. They were talking about the guys who had filmed here.
“Yeah, they found stuff, or so I heard,” someone said. “I can’t wait to see it on TV. Our hometown, on national TV!!”
“Yeah and my aunt! I can’t believe she was attacked, she never told me about that.”
“So, let’s go see if we get attacked!”
They laughed and began going all over the house. I hid behind the piano but wound up sliding down to the second floor since the teenagers actually went behind the piano and shined their flashlights were I had been. I didn’t get ANY peace that night and had to keep finding places to hide since they kept looking in everything, behind everything, under everything. They kept laughing and making declarations of hearing or seeing stuff.
I wondered just what it was about haunted places that attracted interest. The afterlife. I guess people wanted answers… but was that really all? Lindsey-Morganza-whatever wanted to contact ghosts. I wondered exactly what made her want a Spirit Channel. Just answers…? Or was there something else? And these guys, banging around and making noise and pretending to hear things–why exactly did they come here? I followed them around, and a spur of a moment decision happened. They didn’t really want to find anything, I don’t think. They just wanted to say they had been in there. They weren’t expecting anything. Well too bad. They were gonna get something.
I went upstairs and made my hand solid. I banged it against the floor twice. I heard the voices downstairs stop. I waited until they started again and then I knocked again, went un-solid, and floated down to listen in.
“I swear I heard something!” “No way, no way.” “Knocking–I heard knocking–” “This place isn’t haunted.” “It’s haunted, dude, I heard knocking.” “Tapping, it was tapping.”
Hmm. Tapping. I went into the closet and tapped. They went silent and I kept tapping until I heard them get closer. I kept tapping then dove into the other room when the door was opened. I covered my mouth, snickering as I heard the guy exclaim the closet was empty–and that he heard laughing. His voice wavered as he swore he heard very creepy laughing. I kept snickering and then began giggling. I couldn’t help it, and didn’t want to help it. I went from giggling to laughing.
“SHIT! SHIT! SHIT!” I heard them scrambling around and then the front door slamming shut as they left. I went to the front part of the house to look out the window. I watched as they fled from the house, the light from their flashlights bobbing every which way except for one–which had been left in the front hall. I picked it up, examining it for a second then I turned it off.
The front door had been boarded up when I first went there but it wasn’t anymore. I assumed the TV show people had taken the boards off. I opened the door and left the flashlight on the porch, standing upright. I shut the door and triumphantly went back to my piano. That’ll teach’em, I thought, and returned to practicing the song.
The next night, the same guys were back. They brought some other people with them. I could hear them all talking, the first group of teens explaining what had happened–including the flashlight being on the porch. The other group didn’t believe them. I stayed out of sight and quiet as they went all over the house, not doing anything until they gathered in the living room. The new kids were complaining and calling the other kids crazy. The original group protested, insisting they had told the complete truth.
Finally I drifted out, coming up behind one of the new kids. I breathed very softly against the back of her neck. She shivered and reached up, rubbing her neck. “Guys, this place sucks, let’s go,” she mumbled. I breathed again. “Stop it!”
“Stop what?” someone else asked.
“Breathing on me! Who’s doing it?” She turned around and her angry face turned to one of shock. “N… nobody… who–who was behind me?! Who was doing that?”
“Nobody’s behind you… stop imagining things.” Imagining things, eh? I moved to behind him and let out a little sigh, right in his ear. He jumped, his hair practically standing on end. “WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?!” he screamed, and then the girl screamed, and everyone began screaming. I was expecting them to run off but one of the other new guys demanded silence and insisted it was just their imagination.
It is, hmmmm? I went over to him. His back was to emptiness, and nobody was looking so I made my fingers solid and yanked his hair hard. That got him. He shrieked and cussed and ran out of there so fast. I began laughing and everyone followed suit. So much for keeping quiet, I thought. But it was kinda fun. It was mean… but fun. I went to watch them run off and wondered why I was doing this. How could I find it so fun being so mean to people? Maybe it was my ghostly nature wanting to ‘haunt’ people or something. Maybe it wasn’t even really mean. I had nobody to ask if it was.
I went to the bedroom and lay down. I wonder what Miracle would say. She’d probably say I was an idiot, and shouldn’t be ‘revealing’ myself so much. I shouldn’t do it again, I thought and decided if people like them came in again, I would leave them alone. Because if people got too suspicious and scared, they might call a ghost-hunter.