Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Jun 9, 2022

Ka'ahele 2022

This case was not part of my wheelhouse, so to speak, so I did not understand why my presence was required in the beginning.

I was called to attend and observe and not say anything. To sit literally in a corner and say nothing. As did her parents, a 13-year-old Hawaiian girl entered the office, two men in black suits and one military officer. Airforce, by his looks, and a state official of some kind. Each person regarded my presence and then focused on the girl. She was directed to sit on a chair facing everyone else as they took seats a foot away from where she sat. Three tripods with iPads attached angled themselves from three different directions toward the girl. The room was lit well enough that bright ring lights were not needed. It was the state official-looking person who began questioning the girl. The woman was not wearing a badge or a name tag to identify herself, but she started the session like this,

 "ʻIō, my name is Beatrice Fujikawa, and these gentlemen are here to listen to your words. No one is here to hurt you or anything like that. These things you claimed about yourself were posted online by some of your classmates, and that's how we heard about you; we found your information very interesting, so we wanted to ask you some questions. Is that alright?"

"You are asking me something inconsequential in its nature because I am already here in a pre-determined setting that you have previously arranged, so the point is moot," the girl replied.

Beatrice was more than taken aback; the 13-year-old Hawaiian girl rattled her cage. By her body language, Beatrice adjusted herself in her chair and huffed rather than sighed. She briefly looked at the other men and then focused on the girl. "I will be upfront with you then," the state official started. "You have made claims about being a time traveler; what makes us curious is how you claim to travel through time."

"Why?" Beatrice asked. 

"Because you are not talking about technology, but a location where a timeslip exists. Literally, a window you can walk through and then end up in a random time," Beatrice replied.

"Go on," ʻIō said.

Now clearly irritated, Beatrice leaned forward, almost hissing at the young girl, "That happens to be the exact location where we are developing the technology for time travel! We have identified what the Hawaiians call Ka ulu o Leilono and Ka ulu o Lewalo in the Moanalua area and a leina or leaping place on the west-facing point of ʻAliamanu crater! Openings to other realms. We want to know how you came by this information and how you can travel through time? Just know that before you give us any more smart assed answers, we will hold your parents here until you cooperate!"

"I will be forthcoming and tell you that the technology you speak of will be developed, billions of dollars will be invested, and you will all become rich for a time," the girl began. The people in the room looked at one another and smiled at the prospect of their project's future potential.

"What do you mean for a time?" Beatrice was bothered by the girl's last words.

"There will be one element lacking with your technology, preventing it from achieving its full potential. Which is why it will never work. The answer to that problem will be right in front of all of you, but because you'll become so greedy, you will never realize the one key element that will make everything work." ʻIō replied.

"What is that element?!" Beatrice screamed. "Tell us right now!"

Unbothered by Beatrices' outburst, ʻIō said, "It is why my parents and I can travel through time at will."

With that, ʻIō and her parents faded into nothing. I was mindful enough to follow my instincts and leave the room right then because as the three faded into nothing, they took all the air in the space with them. Beatrice and her cohorts fell to the floor, gasping, nearly choking to death before the air returned. I went straight home, packed my things, and disappeared somewhere in the Midwest to acclimate myself to a First Nations community. What did they need me for? A token Hawaiian maybe to give their claims validation?



The openings and the one leaping place were lit by the bright flood lights that illuminated what appeared to be a massive satellite dome. The powering-up process could be heard from the north shore and as far as Sandy Beach. The project was a blight on the community and proved to be of no benefit to the history of mankind as was promised. The element of time travel would not work no matter how much the government tried, time and time again. 

"All they needed was the very thing they refused to consider so that all this could work," ʻIō mused. "They only cared about technology, not the cultural and spiritual element."

"That's right," her mother agreed.

Her father agreed as well. "They needed a Hawaiian."


17A Productions Presents

Lopaka Kapanui at Hawaii Theatre

A LIVE and IN-PERSON storytelling concert at the historic Hawaii Theatre. This master storyteller is one of Hawaii’s most popular teller of tales and has been in the business of scaring people for more than 20 years. Lopaka is terrifically skilled at provoking that sudden chill going down one’s back or causing the small hairs on your arms to stand up. Chicken skin is what we call it in Hawai‘i. Others might refer to it as chills or goosebumps. Sharing real accounts of Hawaii’s supernatural culture, Lopaka often leaves audience members questioning the darkness on their drive home and anxiously leaving the light on at bedtime.


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