Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Sep 4, 2021

100 Ghost Stories Counting Down To Halloween 2021 #57


The blue-lit discs of the floor and on the ceiling directly above fluttered for a second before the full image of Ka'onohi Lamela appeared before her son, who sat on the microbe-filled couch that independently chose its configuration according to the body type of the person who sat on it.

These microbes, in particular, are not the bacteria micro-organisms as we know them. Instead, they are man-made independent micro-computers in minuscule beads made by Malleable Independent Chips Of Biological Entity. So, "Lu'uwai, get off the game immersion now and get ready for school! I have a meeting in a few seconds, but I'll pop back in to check on you!"

"Geeze, it's seven-thirty! Get off my back!" Lu'uwai hated being interrupted in the middle of his game immersion. He was in the thick of the battle at Badon Hill, assisting King Arthur in conquering the Saxons. They were surrounded at the point where his mother's bio-astral projection popped in. He, Bedevere, Gawain, and Percival were trying to get to Arthur to surround him and help fight off Cerdic and his elite guard. But his mother's sudden appearance distracted him, and within that second, a spear made its way through the shields and pierced through the chain mail. It opened up a wound between the space where the deltoid and chest muscles meet. "Aaaaahhhh fucking son of a bitch!" Lu'uwai screamed. He tore off the immersion glasses and removed the nitro gloves and boots. Then, running to the kitchen, Lu'uwai grabbed a stack of mini-absorbent towels. The blood was quickly spreading on his shirt and dripping down his arm and onto the floor, leaving a trail of deep red. The blue-lit discs on the kitchen floor and the ceiling directly above fluttered briefly, and Kaʻonohi's image appeared before her son. "That's why I told you to stop playing those fucking game immersions, Lū!"

"I am good at immersing; it is what I live for," Luʻuwai took a deep breath as the pain intensified. "Your interruption is what almost got me killed."

"Lū, I'm gonna immerse my foot up to your ass in a second," Kaʻonohi lowered her voice. "Get off the game and get to school now!"

"Let me finish up, and Iʻll get ready," he falsely assured his mother. 

Suddenly, the lights in the house went dim, and the A.I. voice came over the immersive sound system. "Game Immersion for King Arthurʻs Battle At Badon Hill, permanently deleted."

"Noooooo...!!!" Luʻuwai screamed.

"Getchur ass to school NOW Lū Iʻm not fucking around!" Kaʻonohiʻs image blipped out, and her son dressed his wounds with a skin graft stabilizer. Then came the quick-stitch applicant, which was the worst. Although it cleansed and sterilized a wound and stitched it back together in a nano-second, it did not have a numbing agent, so you ended up feeling the full intensity of the pain. Finally, with the house speaker system attached to her office, Kaʻonohi heard the animal-like cry filling the space. "Lū," she shook her head. "When are you going to learn?"


The walk-in immersive was the brilliant invention of a drunken software engineer named Bradley Kuelo from Kalihi, who was taking a much-needed piss at a stand-up urinal in a Waikīkī hotel. "What if all learning could take place at a urinal?" He thought to himself. The random idea didnʻt bother him for a couple of more seconds until the bathroom suddenly crowded itself with a bunch of other businessmen like himself, taking a piss and talking on their cell phones at the same time. That was when the light went on in 2022. By 2030, the walk-in immersive became commonplace throughout Hawaiʻi and the world. At Lihiliho High School, Luʻuawai and his fellow classmates stepped into their immersifiers, where they were identified by an eye scanner and an automatic swab kahe, which popped out and took saliva from beneath the tongue. After that, each student gave the command for a six-hour immersive. This meant that the learning part of your brain was immersed in a full day of school, excluding lunch. The process took ten minutes, and school was done. Luʻuwai and his classmates gathered at the front of the school and hung out for a bit. "I heard your mom almost got you killed in the immersive?" Kamuela asked.

"Wounded badly, not killed," Luʻuwai retorted.

"I have an immersive of naked ladies having sex with you," Kamuela whispered. "Do you want it?"

"No, it's too risky," Luʻuwai shook his head. "My mom pops in randomly; I donʻt wanna get caught."

"Shit, I have my own room, and I lock the door so I never get interrupted," Kamuela giggled. 

"Youʻre an idiot, you know that?" Luʻuwai pushed him over.

"I also have a pirated immersive. No one has it. It works off of a deep, immersive, untraceable signal," Kamuela carefully removed it from his back canister and placed it in Luʻuwaiʻs hands.

"Bullshit," Luʻuwai was incredulous. "There is no way anybody can get under the major immersive; it's impossible, and you'll fucking get arrested."

"With this one, you can't!" Kamuela hissed. "Look at it!"

It was the size of a flat mini-remote control filled with miniature black pills. There was no label on it. "There is nothing on it," Luʻuwai looked at his best friend.

Kamuela removed a mini-penlight and shone it on the mini-remote. The words 'Nightmarchers' slowly faded in. "Play it," Kamuela urged his best friend. "It will blow your mind! You won't need gloves and boots. Just take the pill!"

"That's how it works? With just a pill?" Lu'uwai couldn't believe it.

"Aaaand ho'okalakupua!" Kamuela giggled like a little girl. "Magic!"


A short time later, Lu'uwai and Kamuela sat on his microbe-filled couch, looking hesitantly at the other. Lu'uwai held the tall, thin drinking glass in his hand, filled partway with water. He shook out one of the black pills that fell flat on the palm of his hand. Taking a deep breath, he popped it in his mouth and chased it with water. "So, how will I know when this immersive is over?"

"I don't know," Kamuela shrugged his shoulders. "I've never played this immersive before."

Lu'uwai could only remember screaming the word 'WHAT?' at Kamuela. After that, everything went black, and he seemed to fall into a dark chasm where Kamuela and all of the light in his living room faded away until it became a little white dot in the distance. Suddenly, he was on a muddy trail on his hands and knees. He could hear the thundering sound of drums, conch shells, and chanting in the distance. He could also hear many feet running toward him and then past him. Then, a blinding flash of light fell upon him, and he listened to a man harshly scolding him. "What the hell are you doing?!! Get up!!! We have to run!!!"

Lu'uwai was still trying to get his wits about him, "Run from what??"

"Nightmarchers!!! They're right on our heels!!!" Whoever that person was, he grabbed Lu'uwai by the scruff of his collar and yanked him to his feet. "Let's go!!!"

It was only then that Lu'uwai got a good look at the man. It was his father. be continued

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