Are ghosts real? This question sets two brothers and a good friend on a journey of discovery that will ultimately change their lives forever. Their journey begins when they encounter a spirit in the house they are renting, and it forces them to ask questions about the spirit world and afterlife to solve the mystery surrounding their unwelcome visitor. Solving this only leads to an even bigger mystery, that of an unsolved one hundred and fifty-year-old murder mystery that will leave them feeling like pawns in the game of something much more sinister.
Have you ever heard it raining so heavy on a corrugated roof that it sounded like you were lying under a freight train? Have you ever woken in the middle of the night, sure there was someone or something in your bedroom? Have you ever peered, through the darkness of the night, at the shadows in your room? Have you ever stared at one of those shadows as a face, with no defining features except its bright blue eyes, appeared? Have you ever been so scared that even though you weren’t asleep, you pretended to be whilst something whispered your name? Because I have, and it all took place where I grew up in a small town along the central coast of North Queensland, Australia.
I was six years old when I first encountered the whisperings. Those whisperings I believed came from a ghost. And there were soon to be many more encounters like the first. On more than one occasion, I told my parents about the whisperings, but no one believed me as I was only a child.
It’s all a figment of your imagination, they had told me. And after being told the same thing continuously, I started to believe them. They are my parents and thus must be right. Therefore, I began to ignore the whisperings, and over time, they slowly faded into a dull silence.
My adult mind has since erased all but that first encounter from my memory. I find it strange how I can still remember the little facts attached to that memory, like the extreme cold of that stormy mid-July night. I’d been sent to bed early because the power had gone out. I was lying in bed, watching the candle’s dancing flame, trying to stave off falling asleep. The little flame drew all my attention, and I found myself fascinated by the flame appearing to be dancing to a song only it could hear. Its strange ballet had no consistent partner or rhythm. Soon hypnotized by the mysterious flame, I was danced into the place of sleep and dreams.
However, my sleep was abruptly broken when I heard someone whisper my name and felt a push, forcing me to wake up. I opened my eyes, expecting it to be my father or mother, but to my dismay, it wasn’t. I can’t recall any defining features of the face I saw, except for those bright blue eyes. When I looked into those eyes, it was like looking into the eyes of an angel. They were filled with magnificent beauty, peace and wonder that I had never seen before or seen again. I felt very calm and safe looking into those eyes, but that all changed when it whispered.
Its voice didn’t retain the same magnificent serenity that the eyes did. Instead, it was the sound of pure evil. It was as if it had come from the fires of hell, and it sent an icy chill down my spine as if someone had walked over my grave.
Through the blood of three angels, it continued as the deluge of fear that had built in my heart burst from my body in the form of a scream.
My father came running into my room and the creature, now unable to finish, faded into the nothingness of the night. After wrapping me in his arms and comforting me, Dad gave me the inevitable speech—ghosts don’t exist, and it was only your imagination, talk that parents give in the hope that you won’t break their sleep tomorrow night with the same problem. I soon learned that adults would tell you almost anything to get some peace, especially when they’re sleeping or having sex.
Like most children growing up, I accepted my parents’ teachings, and soon, I grew up and out of my imagination, accepting that ghosts didn’t exist and were only of a fiction value. Yet here I was twenty-five years later, writing a record of events that have taken place over the last year and some unbelievable life-changing things have happened.
My brother Phil, I, and a very close friend, Tim, have been chasing ghosts for around a year now and have discovered some amazing things. Not just about ghosts either—we’ve since learned a lot about ourselves and our friendship. Chasing ghosts took a large part of our time, but there were still the usual trials life tossed at us. We had to deal with love, work and maintaining our friendship.
Our journey started in a house we were renting from one of Tim’s other friends, a guy called Ferret. He was a rather big, burly guy looking like a biker or pirate. He had a red goatee about ten centimetres and long red hair, which he wore in a single plait. A very dodgy character, I always thought, but he was a friend of Tim’s.
Their relationship appeared to me like they were more friendly acquaintances than good friends. After all, Tim only ever saw Ferret when he wanted the rent, a favour, or to complain about anything and everything.
On the other hand, Phil and I had grown up together with Tim and were very close friends. For this reason, we seemed to have the same opinion on most things, so it was no surprise that we had the same view on ghosts. Ghosts existed only in fictional stories such as The Headless Horseman or the movie Ghostbusters, which we all loved.
However, the house we were renting was about to change that perception and leave us with a different view of the afterlife.
The house I’m talking about was an old two-story square building, with the outside bottom-floor walls rising to about knee height. Louvres then continued the rest of the way to the ceiling. It had an exterior front staircase leading up to another front entry which opened into my bedroom and an internal staircase at the back of the home.
There were four bedrooms, a bathroom, and a living room upstairs. Downstairs was a kitchen, dining room, breakfast area, and living or lounge room. There was always a lovely cool ocean breeze blowing through the louvres, as the house was situated straight across the road from one of the many beautiful local beaches.