Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Aug 10, 2021

100 Ghost Stories Counting Down To Halloween 2021 #82


The sun rising from the east blankets its early morning hue over the capital district. Street sweepers kick up dust and leaves leftover from the shower trees along south king.

Pidgeons and other birds squeal and scream from the branches of the banyan trees between the old state ID building and the supreme court building. Cars amble into the parking lot, where drivers are armed with rolls of quarters for the meters. One can hear the announcement from the speakers of the city bus, letting patrons know where the vehicle is headed and along what route. The last spirits living on the palace grounds and in the American-French florentine edifice lose the corporeal form in which they can only live at night. In the daylight, they are mere wisps of smoke seen from the corner of the eyes of the living with fleeting glances. The calling spirit at the old artesian well makes her way back down the hundred-foot lava tube with her latest victim in tow. A young man, a passer-by who, upon noting the empty silence of the palace grounds, scaled the back fence, tread carelessly upon the finely manicured grass, and passed by the well. Hearing the sound of his name beckoning to him from some undetermined direction, he turned to see the most lovely Hawaiian girl who could not have been all of twenty, standing near the well bearing only a half-smile, inviting him to move closer. Her hair was a long luxurious raven black color, and her sheer white dress revealed that she wore nothing under it. In her eyes lingered a hint of mischief which precariously teetered on the needlepoint of danger. He asked her name to which she did not reply. Thinking this was folly and perhaps the girl was a woman of the evening, he turned to venture elsewhere on the palace grounds. She entreated his name again with the sweetest of inflections, "Chad, don't go. Come here, Chad, keep me company. I know a place where we can go."

The Hawaiian girl positioned herself to walk back down the steps of the artesian well, promising Chad all the pleasures he had yet to know in his young life. He could not help but follow, matching her step by step. Finally, without so much as a glance, she reached behind her and turned the doorknob, opening the portal to her right. She stepped back so that whatever ambient light remained would illuminate her nude form and a portion of her beautiful face. "No one can see us, Chad. Come, make love to me."

Chad opened the zipper to his jeans and let his pants fall to his knees while he simultaneously shuffled toward the girl. Her arms stretched out, beckoning to him. He stepped forward to embrace her, but her form was smoke from the fires of a sacrificial temple, and Chad fell one hundred feet to his death below. No one would ever find him even if they'd made an effort to do so. All that mattered to the calling spirit was that she was satiated until her next meal. 

Passersby quietly acknowledge the statue of her royal majesty Queen Lili'uokalani while on their way to work or school. The lingering buzz from weed whackers on the capital lawn becomes an ambient sound, as does the sound of traffic along Richards Street. The workers renovating the duck pond awaken their machines to perform their tasks while foot traffic filters through the rotunda; each person briefly looks for the noise source. All the while, a calling spirit slumbers in the depths of Honolulu's underground, waiting for the perfect meal to pass by her home. It's a man who is destroyed in his mind, body, and spirit. The essence of that kind of man is Henoheno, sweeter than that of a penitent man. And so, she waits.

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