Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Sep 19, 2021

100 Ghost Stories Counting Down To Halloween 2021 #42


Edna Ramos didn't hate her job.

Instead, she hated the people she worked with because they were all ignorant. They had no idea as to what Edna had to give up to immigrate to Hawai'i. She had a doctorate in religion and theology, but rather than go on to teach and eventually obtain tenure, her traditional parents wanted her to marry a man that was twenty years her senior. It didn't matter that he was wealthy. It mattered that she had no clue as to who he was as a person. For all she knew, he could be a horrible human being. She refused to marry him, but her parents would not let the issue lie until they finally had their way. So rather than give in, she left the Philippines and came to Hawai'i. Once here, she found it difficult to get a job teaching the subject, which was her specialty. Not because there were not any openings, but because she was brown and a woman. She was seething with anger when she drove out of the parking lot of Leeward Community College.

Working in the administration office was not what she was meant for. It was not what she came to Hawai'i to do. But, of course, what held her back from her potential was another man twenty years her senior. The dean of admissions. He had a thing for young Filipino women and goodness that there was enough of them in the admissions office. Edna being the newest was his next challenge. Still, when she rebutted his advances so eloquently, it infuriated the dean to the point where he nearly thought to fire her for insubordination. Rather than do that, he made her teach a night course in English. She spent the rest of the evening on the phone with her sister from the Philippines, cursing the day the dean of admissions was ever born. It was well after midnight when she finally started her car up and left. She couldn't wait to get home to her condo in Mililani, where she'd take a hot shower and then head out to the nearest 7-11. She needed to buy snacks that she would drown herself with as she wallowed in her grief while watching her favorite medical procedural show. She was too proud to admit that she may have been too hot-headed in her decision to leave home. The tears that burned her eyes confirmed that fact. For a moment, she noticed that she was the only car on the road.

As she came upon the bridge which crossed Kipapa gulch, she saw a car turned over on the opposite end of the bridge. Her headlights shown upon the driver, trapped under the vehicle on the driver's side as she got closer. It was the dean of admissions, trying desperately to push the car off of himself. There were tears in his eyes; he was frustrated, knowing that his attempts were futile. "HELP!" he croaked. "HELP!" Quickly, she pulled over to a safe spot ahead and then ran back to render aid only to find that there was no car and no dean of admissions trapped beneath it. The last thing Edna heard was a deep low growl. She never saw it coming. The half-dog-half creature tackled her hard to the pavement and then came back and clenched down on the back of her neck, trying to cut off her air supply by choking her to death. Edna only managed to get a half scream out when the creature snapped her spinal cord and killed her instantly.

Kaupe heard her thoughts and felt her anguish and regret. Unfortunately, her pride blinded her from thinking logically even though she achieved a doctorate. Her anger consumed her to a point where it carried her subconscious to visions of murderous intent. It's precisely what Kaupe used to create the illusion of someone trapped under a car, with himself being the mirage of the helpless middle-aged Hawaiian man. The few seconds of the illusion he planted in her mind would be enough to shake her out of her self-immolation. That's when he telepathically reached out and touched her. Then, for a short time, he physically ate her for a meal. 

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