Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Oct 20, 2020

100 Ghost Stories Counting Down To Halloween 2020 #11

 We were on a weekend drive to Hauʻula. I remember that because we passed through the Wilson tunnel. It was a thing back then to see how long you could hold your breath while going through both tunnels.

I fainted while holding in all that air because I didnʻt want to be the designated shit boy for the rest of the day in case I lost. My sisters panicked when I turned purple, and my eyes rolled over white. My father pulled the car over to a safe place once we were out of the tunnel. My parents examined me, and I eventually came around. When they asked me what happened, I didnʻt say anything about the holding your breath contest; I just told them I didnʻt feel well. That worked out in our favor because we made an out of the way pit stop and Randyʻs drive-inn in Kailua. After all, my mom felt that perhaps I hadnʻt had enough to eat for breakfast, which is why I ended up feeling light-headed. My sisters silently thanked me for not giving them up to our folks, lest they get their butts beat even before we got to Hauʻula. 

Back then, my father was well known to HPD and not in a good way. Dad was a bull of a man, very rough and tumble. When he got into a public brawl with someone, and the police came to break it up with the intent of employing some of their judo or boxing training, my father, a former golden gloves boxer, was more than ready to accommodate them. Some of the older men in blue were ready to try him if when the opportunity presented itself. 



We were on the stretch of road between Valley of Temples and the Kahaluʻu bridge when the blue and white 73 Plymouth Fury police siren wailed from behind us and pulled us over. The officerʻs name was Texeira; he came strolling up to the driverʻs side door with a shit-eating grin on his face. "Moniz?"

"Yeah," my father replied.

"You know this, not one ticket, right?" I remembered the officer Texeiraʻs big white teeth. At that moment, I felt anxiety, not for him or my father, but worry over something that I felt would happen at any minute. My father was out of the car in a second, dukes up, and ready to go. My mother was hysterical even though sheʻd been through this many times. My sisters held on to one another, silently praying that nothing would happen to our father, while I wished that the officer would leave my father alone and go away. Before my father could get inside the officer's reach and start delivering punishing kidney punches, Texeira got him in a clinch. My fatherʻs natural reaction was to push him off, which he did, but much too hard. The officer stumbled back into oncoming traffic and got cleaned out by an old Dodge duty truck. 


My mom and sisters were making the futile effort to pull my father back to the station wagon. I slowly walked to where the officerʻs body lay on the pavement. Blood and guts lay everywhere; at first, I thought what I saw on the pavement might have been pieces of Chickʻs gum, but it was his teeth, officer Texeiraʻs teeth.  Did I do that? I know I wished it, but did I make it happen? We were late to the party in Hauʻula, and my father wasnʻt his ordinary life of the party self.  My mom sat with my auntʻs in the house and thatʻs how everyone found out about the accident. My sisterʻs sat across the street at the beach by themselves. Typically, theyʻd jump at the chance to have the older boy cousins come with them, but tonight was different. They needed to decompress and deal with what they saw earlier. I sat at the long benched table with butcher paper stapled all over it. In front of me was a paper plate filled with lumpia, haupia, laulau, lomi salmon, and poi. I just looked at it and drank my two cans of RC Cola instead. I know I wasnʻt supposed to hoʻokano the food, but I couldnʻt muster up an appetite with officer Texeiraʻs mutilated form sitting across the table from me. "I dunno what you expect me to do?"

"Rematch," officer Texeira growled. "Tell your faddah I like one rematch."

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