Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Aug 28, 2023

100 Ghost Stories Counting Down To Halloween 2023. #37 Hanging Out.

The old courthouse in town would be torn down in a few days, but because of a few concerns and worries from the developers, the powers that be gave me and my team precisely eight hours to do what we needed.

The problem, which surprised me, was that whatever spiritual infestation occupied the aged courthouse would also seep into the land where they'd intended to build a retreat for wealthy people who needed to decompress from the worries of being rich. I laughed in Frank's face. He became instantly put out and took a step forward to literally get in my face. "This is no joke," he growled.

"Oh yes, it is," I replied. "Rich people, who are so rich that they need someplace to run away to, to deal with the trappings of being rich? Fuck them, and fuck you for supporting bullshit like this. What's next? A pedestrian bridge to Ala Moana Beach Park?"

"That's actually in the works," Frank confirmed.

"I hope it falls to shit," I deadpanned. Walking back to my vehicle, I could hear Frank's hurried footsteps behind me. He grabbed my arm and spun me around. "Be careful," I warned him. "People are gonna think we're breaking up,"

"Oh fuck you! Can you be serious for once, Pali?" Poor Frank was exasperated because of all the pressure his higher-ups gave him. "You know the reputation of that building, the kinds of cases that were tried there, and how corrupt the judges were! Fucking hangings right in front of the courthouse! All that shit is here, in this old building "IN" the land!"

"What happened here is not shit," I reminded him. "These were real people who were sentenced to hang by military judges fresh out of the academy who knew shit from Shinola about the law! And for no good reason other than minor infractions and the fact that they were brown-skinned." Frank seemed surprised that I knew so much about the history of the old courthouse. "So, break it down and build a retreat on top of it, and whatever happens, happens." I got in my vehicle and was about to drive off when a thought occurred to me. "You know, Frank, the best thing to do is turn this place into a community park or playground because, in the past, selfish, entitled people decided that hard-working laborers from the plantation were an inconvenience and were expendable. That same kind of energy will occupy the building you put here, and it will all play itself out again and again,"

Frank really took what I said to heart, and the retreat for rich people was put up four blocks away from its originally intended location. Where the old corrupted courthouse used to be is now a community park and playground. Except as of late, there have been many hanging suicides from the trees in the park and from the jungle gym and monkey bars.

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