Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Sep 25, 2020

100 Ghost Stories Counting Down To Halloween 2020 #36

 If youʻre a vampire anywhere else in the world, I suppose your success would depend not on how large of a nest you make for yourself, but how well you can keep yourself concealed.

In Hawaiʻi, the success rate for a vampire here is zero percent. Sure, you could feed without being found out, and even quietly turn a victim or two. However, you can expect to find your potential brides disemboweled and left laying under your bedsheet, or perhaps swirling around in your soup. You, of course, are being saved for last. Even for a vampire, your death will be unspeakably horrific. Youʻre asking yourself why other entities and monsters from different parts of the world survive in the islands when a vampire cannot? Itʻs simple; those entities and demons arrived with the immigrants from around the world who came to work in cane fields. Those things existed within the cultures that individual families belonged to. They werenʻt trying to create their own nest.

The Hawaiian archipelago is under the protection of a singular Kahuna. No one knows his identity; what is known is that his underworld network is extensive and far-reaching. The last vampire that tried to gain a foothold here managed to hide in the basement of an all-girls Catholic school. She didnʻt get far. Her aged human mother worked with the Kahuna to find her and set her soul free. She was beheaded and locked in an armored truck driven off the high cliffs and into the ocean at Makapuʻu.


I arrived in Honolulu from Boston at eight in the evening. Customs officers were waiting for me the second I got to baggage claim. I expected this to happen as I had a few gold bars in my luggage. A little something I collected before the invasion of Poland in 1939. The room was compact and padded with egg cartons, strange. Itʻs no wonder that the twelve customs officers and myself were able to fit. When they saw that I was not a threat, they left the room in the same awkward formation by which they entered. They locked the door behind them; I turned to see a middle-aged Hawaiian man in a dark suit and tie sitting on the other side of the compact table in the room. "Have a seat Seleucus."

"How do you know my name?" I asked him.

"I trust youʻre here to make a connecting flight?" He answered my question with a question.

I will play along before I take him apart. "I thought Iʻd spend a month here before I moved on."

"Our islands have a history of visitors staying for a month and then decimating our population with their introduced diseases. Iʻm sure youʻve heard that the world is under a pandemic? So are we." 

A seasoned man, if anything, scholarly, well-spoken, and worldly. Had I not known any better, I would say he was one of our kind. "I believe I should be insulted,"

"Iʻm not at all concerned with the affairs of the rest of the world, " he began. "But yours is a pandemic that will never happen here in Hawaiʻi. So, weʻll say that you are making a connecting flight."

Even as I formulated the thought of rushing across the room to crush his windpipe and have him watch helplessly as I tore his heart from his chest and ate it in front of him, he was in my face. Three inches of the sharpened wooden dagger inserted itself into my throat. A twitch of his muscle will leave me decapitated. "Donʻt be stupid, just make the connecting flight and leave."

"Youʻre the one they talk about," I spoke carefully. "Iʻm honored but also curious, how are you able to move like one of us?"

"If you choose to be difficult after you leave this room, youʻll be cut down even before you blink. Donʻt let your longevity fool you into believing that youʻll make it," his eyes burned through me worse than I could ever have done to a human being. "Arrogance is the singular downfall of every vampire."

"Very well," I agreed. The door opened from the outside, and the customs officers filed in and formed around me. Now, I understand how the word got out to all the other nests. This Hawaiian man had the blood of a thousand years in his eyes; I would like to return perhaps one day and find out who he is. In the meantime, we were coming into the baggage claim when another customs officer joined the formation and wheeled up a cart with my luggage and personal bags on it. In a flash, I swatted the customs officers out of the way and grabbed the cart.  I made a break for the double doors. In an instant, the lights switched from the standard fetid yellow to pitch black and then to UV. The UV burned right through me, took my feet first, and then began to burn through my torso. When my hands dissipated into black ash, the UV lights went off. Customs carried my mangled torso back to the room, where I was thrown into an airline's food cart. I screamed and pounded from within, demanding to be let out. "Throwing me to the sharks, are you???!!!"

"Shipping you back from whence you came," it was the Kahunaʻs voice. "Itʻs Romania, isnʻt it?"



Here I am, dumped out in front of the gates of Stavropoleos Monastery Church. Fuck, Iʻm in Romania, the very last place I want to be, at the glimmer of sunset. The people scream with disgust at the sight of me, a vampire who is nothing but a burnt undead torso. They begin throwing rocks or anything they can get their hands on before they start beating me. Many more burn me with their crucifixes, pressing them hard into my skin. Finally, on the perimeter, I can see them from nearby buildings' windows, on the rooftops, watching. "Save me, brothers and sisters!!!"

They do nothing; they just watch, looking down at me as if they were better. They know, somehow they know where Iʻve been and that I paid the price. Good god, Iʻm an example to others who would dare try, thatʻs why they wonʻt lift a finger to save me. "Damned, you all to the devil!" I scream at them. "Damned you!!!"


If youʻre a vampire anywhere else in the world, I suppose your success would depend not on how large of a nest you make for yourself, but how well you can keep yourself concealed. In Hawaiʻi, the success rate for a vampire is zero percent. 

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