Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Apr 3, 2022

ʻĪkoi Lua 2022

"That's the purpose of this office, isnʻt it?" Aunty Rita asked, and of course, my uncles agreed, but the question was directed at me. "Isnʻt it Hanson?"

"Yes, Aunty Rita, it is," I agreed. "That is if you want to quote the rules and be specific,"

"Those families are suffering," Uncle Ivan reminded me. "Why arenʻt we allowed to do our job and help them?" Uncle Ivan wanted an explanation as well.

"Eh, those two guys had no thought about what they were doing; they didnʻt care; they brought it on themselves," Uncle Tiny said. "Why are their actions Boyʻs problem? Why are we blaming him for not wanting to help the stupid?"

I had to explain myself, but what do I say? That the idiotic disrespect that two soldiers displayed on the grounds of one of our most potent and sacred temples should merit our help because now their wives and children are suffering? Yes, they are innocent. But they did nothing to deserve the fallout. "We not lifting a finger to help them," my answer was. "Not right away, Iʻm going to let them suffer a bit more to see the full scope of what their actions have yielded."

"Fair enough," Aunty Rita agreed. "But do not let them suffer too long; remember, children are involved."

"Collateral damage," Uncle Ivan said.

"Now you sound like the old man," Tiny chuckled.

"If there's nothing else, I'm gonna go get some lunch," I stood up and held my hands out as Tiny took my hand on one side and Ivan on the other. Opposite me stood Rita, holding hands with my uncles on either side. "Mahalo for the knowledge and compassion of my Kumu, the source from which I gain humility, self-reflection, and aloha."

"Aloha," we all said together while giving our hands a nurturing squeeze in acknowledgment. "Aunty, Uncles, would you like me to get something for you?"

"'l'll get something later," Aunty Rita waved me off. "I have to wait for the I.T. guy to show me this new accounting system on this frickinʻ computer."

"We're going to the Vet Center at Tripler; we're going to meet our buddy for lunch," Tiny said. "You go eat; no worry about us."


My uncles got me hooked on those BBQ cheeseburgers and monster fries from down the street, so that is where I went. I was crossing at the intersection of University and South King when I looked up and saw him. That little boy from a few days ago looked confused and was precariously unsure how to cross the road. There was no one there to help him; my heart sank. I couldnʻt just stand here and do nothing. The second a bit of traffic cleared up, I raced across the street and ran right up to him.

"You! What are you doing here by yourself? Where are your parents?" He pointed in the direction of Isenburg with a troubled expression on his face. "What? What happened?"

"They're fighting," he murmured. "I cannot go back until they stop,"

"Then why are you walking all the way over here?" I was very irritated, but I wasn't sure if it was because of his parents or because of himself just wandering off all alone. He shrugged his shoulders, and now tears were hovering in his eyes. But, of course, this wasn't his fault, and I had to put aside any thoughts of what I felt I wanted to do to his mother and father. Irresponsible parents who weren't responsible enough to have a child. They are probably fighting over drugs. "How much did you say you can count up to?"

He held up his chubby fingers to me, "Too-wenty,"

"Do you want to come to help me count some french fries?" I asked, already knowing what the answer was.


At the house on base at Schofield, things were getting worse. Corliss phoned Steerforth and told him that his youngest, the baby, woke up with tiny human bite marks on her cheeks. Steerforth replied and told Corliss that his wife had the same bite marks all over her back. "The night before, it sounded like someone was running around the house and pounding on the walls. So I went out there, and there wasn't anybody there. But there were little handprints all over. Man, we need help."

"I know," Corliss replied. "You think I don't know? But every time I call somebody and I tell them about what happened, nobody wants anything to do with it. Most people tell me to call that one guy"

"Try him again," Steerforth insisted.

"I've tried, dude! You've tried! No Bueno, man, he's still pissed at us!" Corliss reminded him.


The BBQ cheeseburger was perfection, as were the thick french fries and the large soda on crushed ice. The tiny Hawaiian boy sat across from me, having already polished off his cheeseburger. He intently counted each french fry in the bag and then ate them right after. Then, he would take sips from his fruit punch and resume his counting. "What's your name again?"

He looked up at me, smiled, " 'Īkoi," and returned to counting. "Too-twenty!" He raised his last fry up in the air and popped it in his mouth. "Hmmm.." he rubbed his belly.

"That might be correct because you seem to float around these streets by yourself," I said more to myself than him.

"Huh?" He affected the little boy's confusion; he was happy and content, and all in his world was right. In a perfect world, this moment of happiness would be enjoyed with his parents and not a total stranger like myself. Children are so trusting because they're unfiltered and only know innocence and joy. Afterward, we gravitated to the stadium park, where I sat on a bench and watched him play and frolic. I scanned Isenburg Street, looking carefully at all the cars that doubled as homes for the houseless and listening carefully for any sort of arguing. It was tranquil. I caught a glimpse of ʻĪkoi from my peripheral, running toward the pavilion, and then I heard yelling and screaming. I stood up and looked toward the pavilion. I intended to collect ʻĪkoi, walk him over to his parents, and verbally eviscerate them for their lack of parenting skills, but he was gone. My search for him yielded nothing. Well, that foiled my purpose. I could not very well yell at those people without their son present. For all I know, I might end up scolding the wrong people. After a while, I walked back to the office, where I found Kealoha pacing back and forth in front of the office door downstairs. "Boss, they need you upstairs; it's important."

"What's wrong?" I asked my trusted doorman and bodyguard.

"Uncles and aunties told me to tell you that you need to go upstairs." Kealoha was under strict orders from his elders, so he had to obey.

"Must be serious," I said as I walked past him and stepped into the birdcage elevator. The light from the office spilled out into the lobby, which told me the door was open and that I was being waited for. I walked into the office and saw Corliss and Steerforth sitting there with their wives and children on my armchairs and couches.

"We have a real problem," Rita sighed.

"We know what it is that's been harming them," Ivan stood up and made room for me to assume my chair. Tiny said nothing; he just sat there shaking his head.

"Get out," I pointed to the open door leading into the lobby and toward the birdcage elevator. "Get out of my office now." be continued

credit: taer scott photography



Check out our Mysteries of Hawai'i website and schedule your date with Hawaii's longest-running ghost tour! Visit some of Hawaii's Most Haunted sites with The Ghost Guy himself.

No comments:

Post a Comment