Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Feb 21, 2022

Afterlife 2022

We live in Aiea kai place, just past the strip mall.

It's a tiny neighborhood tucked into a lovely space that seemed perfect for us. We'd been there for less than a month when it all started. Nothing subtle like the movies; it made itself evident from the beginning. At first, I thought it was trying to scare us so we'd leave, but then I realized that whatever it was, it was repeating a pattern whether we noticed it or not. It was an old Hawaiian man, standing in the back room the I converted to my crafts room. He would stand there facing the wall, adjusting his tie and then putting his coat on. He was very handsome and stately, and he had somewhere to go by his body language. The first time he came walking out of that back room, he made a beeline for my husband and me while we sat at the table having breakfast. We both noticed him at the very last second and jumped up from our chairs to get out of his way. Unfortunately, he thundered right past us and went right through the wall. A short time later, I was in the crafts room when something caught the corner of my eye. I looked out the window, and there he was in the yard, dressed in dungarees raising a pickax over his head and bringing it down on something. My husband Kevin was in the kitchen preparing the brisket for later. "Babes? I raised my voice just high enough so he could hear me.

"Yup?" He replied.

"That old man is in the yard with a pickax," Kevin stopped what he was doing, and we both met in the living room and headed outside. There he was, digging at something but making no dent on our lawn. Then he was gone.

Kevin grabbed my hand and squeezed it too hard, making me wince. "Max," he said nervously. "What the hell is going on?"

"Dude, are you trying to break my hand or what?" I had to yank his hand away from mine.

"I'm sorry, babes," he apologized, "but we need to call someone."

The person who came to help us was a woman that looked a throwback to the '50s. Bobbed hairdo, angora sweater, and a poodle skirt. Our source told us that this woman was a Kahuna and came highly recommended. She made no introduction, and she didn't ask for a fee. Instead, she stood in our doorway and quietly looked around and said, "Whoever this man is, his ghost is going to make a third appearance. You two tell him that he is scaring you when he does that, do you understand? After that, he'll leave."

"That's it?" Kevin asked. "You or we don't have to do anything else?"

"Well, that backroom was his bedroom, and this wall here in the kitchen at one time was the front door," she pointed. "So, this was his house, and his third appearance will tell you how it ended for him."

With that, she turned and left. "What about your fee?" I called out to her.

"Call me after his next appearance, then we can talk fee," she replied.


Two days later, Kevin and I were planting pakalana around the house after we'd already put up trellises earlier. There was no sound to indicate his presence; he was just there, raising his pickax over his head and striking at something again and again. When he brought up the handle again to lift it over his head strike, the pickax came loose from the handle and went flying into the air. The old man looked up and became blinded by the sun. The pickax landed point first right through the top of his head, killing him instantly. That's when my husband and I followed the kahuna's instructions, "Please leave," we told the apparition. "You're scaring us; please go to your rest." It obliged us and left and never manifested again. I called the kahuna that same day and told her what had happened. "Oh good!" she was so cheerful. "he died on the property, yeah?" She asked, already knowing the answer.

"From what we saw," I began. "It looked like he did."

"I'm on my way for my fee; it's three hundred dollars," she hung up, and when she arrived twenty minutes later, we paid her in full. Eventually, Kevin and I decided to sell the place and move to town. After everything, we felt like we had intruded on the old Hawaiian man's space, and we wanted to leave him to his peace. It was an awful way to die, but it's also a horrible way to exist in the afterlife. Love and aloha to this kupuna.