Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Feb 11, 2022

Far 2022

No matter how far I drive, how long the road, how many hours, the length of time.

I can't get away from the memory of it, so deeply embedded in my soul. It wouldn't take its complete human form, which may explain why it only appeared like a shadow. Its form as a shadow was so black that no light could penetrate it. So when it appeared in broad daylight, it was beyond horrifying because it didn't register in the human brain right quick. A black human-like shape with no discernable human features. In my home, it just stood there, or it waited until you looked in its direction, then it would peek out from around the corner or from behind a door and slowly pull back. By the time you'd run to the place where you saw it, it was gone. It couldn't hide very well in the shadows because of how pitched its blackness was. That's how I initially discovered it. One evening, I was playing with a flashlight and directed the beam into my darkened living room. One of those flashlights used by federal agents was very bright and very direct. It lit up the whole space, except for one dark spot where the beam of my flashlight did not penetrate. I wasn't sure what it was until it stood up and walked toward me. I don't know why it was there or what it wanted, but it messed with me every chance it got. The final straw came when I was brushing my teeth one morning, and I heard a woman's voice call my name as plain as day, "Travis."

I whipped around and saw it standing in the hallway in its formlessness. It took a step toward me, and I screamed and pushed right past it and knocked it over. Whatever it was, it felt like a wet sponge. It made my skin crawl, and yes, I screamed higher than a girl would scream, with complete terror. A kind of aberration from the usual scream. Good thing I was already dressed to go out. My wallet, keys, and phone were in my pocket. I booked it out the door and got in my car, and took off. It's been three hours of driving now, but seriously.

Where the fuck am I going? I live on an island. I booked myself into a hotel near the airport, and I had to explain to my family why I needed them to go to my house and move everything out without my presence. Then, I changed my mind. I couldn't risk exposing them to that shadow in the place. What if it followed one of them back home or something? I hired a moving company instead, but then I changed my mind. That shadow could already be attached to anything at my place. So, everything went into storage. I did head to the store and buy myself some new clothes, and then I wore them out of the store. I took my old clothes and shoes and burned them. After that, I got a new wallet and a new cellphone. Then, I moved to the Maui and decided to start fresh. Then, I changed my mind and moved to Vegas. So far, so good. I keep my place well-lit, and I'm always on the lookout for shadows that can't be penetrated by any kind of light, not even sunlight. Where is this place on Oahu, you ask, that was haunted by this shadow? It's on 4th street, next to the Sunset Memorial Cemetery. Now you know, and now you know why.

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