HALLOWEEN HAUNTS - Horror Writer's Association - Trick-or-Treating of the DEAD

I had just gotten out of a three week hospital stay during the harshest point of my radiation treatment on Halloween and decided that 18 was still not too old to go get candy.

Monday, August 11, 2014

No Really, True Story

Our first story for the campfire edition comes from an old friend and World of Warcraft partner. Azure brings us a story from her children. Children still have the eyes they were born with, innocent eyes that see the truth of the world before they become distorted by all the nonsense adults believe. Take a look at the natural world through the eyes of her children, and remember. . .


No Really, True Story!
Azure Shade

We were watching the movie Casper when the first incident happened. Now I can already see from your squint and raised eyebrow that you think this is crazy or stupid, or maybe both, well you aren't the only one. I can hardly believe it either, and I'm the one it happened to.

My niece Cherry and I were extremely bored one evening and decided to watch a movie. My kids were still small, only four and six at the time, so our choices were limited. Cherry held up a VHS tape of Casper, “How about this?”

I shrugged, “Well it's better than watching Rolie Polie Olie for the hundredth time.”

She put the tape in the VCR and tossed the movie's plastic dust cover on the top shelf of the bookcase. It landed on it's side next to the a fore mentioned and disparaged Rolie Polie Olie. We sprawled on the couch to watch Casper. Time crawled by leaving us feeling lethargic. That's when it happened.

Casper was telling someone “But I'm a friendly ghost.” on the TV. At that exact moment the VHS dust cover for the movie shifted itself to an upright position. It wobbled back and forth a few times before it stilled.

Cherry and I looked at the plastic case, then at each other. “Did you see that?” she asked, her eyes wide in disbelief.

I nodded, my own eyes a mirror of hers. “Yeah. That really just happened.” We blinked at each other a few times, movie and boredom entirely forgotten. I know it seems silly and if this was the only thing that happened that summer, we would have decided this was just our imagination playing with us, but it was only the beginning.

A few weeks later my four year old son Orion came to me. “Mommy, I don't like her.”

“Who don't you like baby, your sissy?” I asked as I gave him a hug.

“No, momma, I like sissy. I don't like her.” he said with a pout.

“Who is her baby?” I asked, being patient with his four year old explanations.

“The clear girl, she pinches me.”

“Clear? Is she a girl from daycare?”

“No momma, she in my room.” He said as he pointed down the hall. Whaaaat? I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Prickles began creeping up my neck. Could he mean a ghost? Maybe it was just imaginary play. I really had trouble believing what I was hearing.

“Orion, when you say clear do you mean you can see through her?” I hesitantly asked.

Orion nodded, “Yes mommy! She's clear!”

The prickles continued spreading. “Baby, is she the only clear person you see?”

He shook his head, “I see making friends and glass people too. I see her mommy too, her momma is nice. I tell on her and her momma makes her stop.”

My head swirled. Making friends and glass people?! What the hell is going on? I started to feel like I was in some sort of twisted version of Poltergeist or The Sixth Sense. This made me want to grab the kids and run away. I needed to calm down and find out more of what was going on without scaring Orion.

“Baby, what are the making friends and glass people?” I asked nonchalantly, and he began to tell me. Through many slow and pointed questions I learned that the making friends where shadowy figures that floated around and that even the ceiling fan could make them shift and move. The glass people were more defined and looked like humans, only mostly transparent. The shadowy making friends were nice and almost puppy like in demeanor, but the glass people terrified Orion. He said they didn't do anything to him, but they felt scary.

I had to ask myself some hard questions with this. I never let my kids watch scary stuff or anything meant for older kids. I was very strict in what I let come into their world. We as parents are their only defense against the world, and I took my role seriously. So I knew he didn't have anything to base these making friends or glass people on. That left me with only one answer.

They were real.

I was at a loss. What do I do? Weeks past when I carefully monitored Orion. His laughing and talking to himself took on new meaning. I'd always thought he was just babbling, like small children often do, but with the new information the things he would say started to make more sense.

Nothing bad happened though, no static TV's or possession. No sinking house or thumps on the walls. I began to relax. No, it probably wasn't normal for your son to have ghostly playmates, but what could I do?

The last thing that happened, was rather soothing, and also validation in it's own way. It was around ten PM in November, I was on the phone to my mom, chatting about nothing in particular. It was a beautiful night and I had the lights off and the windows open, letting in the soft cool breeze.

“No mom, I'll be over with the kids this weekend, I—wait . . . I just saw something in the hall, hang on a sec.” I leaned over the couch's arm rest and peered into the hall, craning my neck to get a better view. “There's a light in the hall.

What the eff? Mom, I thought the kids had got the flashlights again, but they're not awake and the . . . it's balls of light?”

“It sounds like orbs, hun’.” My mom said. “Cool, I've never seen them what do they look like?”

Leave it to my mom to think it was cool! “They're just sort of glowy and kinda . . . ugh I don't know how to describe it, Mom!”

Mom continued to talk to me but I sort of lost what she said in the background as the orbs continued to float closer. One was chest high and the other was about a foot and a half lower. The smaller and shorter of the two was slightly in front of the other.

The glow didn't illuminate anything around them. There was no reflection on anything else, but it wasn't a dim glow either. The orbs turned the corner moving through the edge of the living room and dining room, to stop in the kitchen.

There was no way a flashlight could have made those orbs. No windows could reach where the orbs stopped. Suddenly I remembered what Orion said months ago about the mom and daughter ghosts. Somehow it felt as if this strange energy was parent and child. I'm not sure why I felt that way, it just was. The orbs sank and disappeared. I was left with my mom on the phone, patiently waiting for me to respond. I explained what I'd seen and how it felt. Her response, “Sounds like the kid wanted something to eat.”

We moved a few months later. Orion stopped talking to himself and stopped talking about the making friends and glass people as soon as we moved. There was no more talk of the mom and her little girl who liked to pinch. Things went back to normal as if none of it ever happened. I sometimes talk to my niece Cherry or my mom about it, to reassure myself that we genuinely were haunted in that old house we rented when my kids were small.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Campfire Month

Campfire Ghost Stories
From Collector T. Fox Dunham

We gaze into the hypnotic flicker of campfire flames, and our minds dream—campers and fire-goers, enjoying the ancient fire medium as we gather in the forest and fields. We gather our moss to spark, smolder and fallen limbs to burn, fighting the oldest battle of humankind: to expel the darkness. And when we seek a weapon to join in this physical battle of survival—a nourishment for the mind and spirit—we wield the story. This ritual is not just one of entertainment. The story is survival.

What kind of stories are told around campfires? Traditionally, we turn to ghost stories or tales of darkness to scare. These yarns imbue the circle with a means of taming those forces beyond human control and create wonder by testing the perceived limits of the physical world. There is a power in storytelling, and I share this power with you. I have long enjoyed the magic of telling ghost stories around a campfire, and when the stories are true—as all folklore possesses an element of truth—they can possess you.

So, in the two year tradition of The Fox True Ghost Story Project, I bring seven paranormal tales to fuel your campfire narratives, collected from international believers. Again, I do not seek to validate these stories, because that is not the purpose of folklore. I am here to collect, catalog and archive. So please enjoy my special campfire tales which I will be posting through the month of august.

And don’t forget: Get your Foxxy summer spooky on!

T. Fox Dunham is an internationally published author, member of the Horror Writer’s Association and story teller. He’s been published in multiple magazines, journals and anthologies. His first novel, The Street Martyr, is being produced into a motion picture by Throughline Films, and he’s finishing edits on his third novel, Mercy, a horror-medical thriller for Blood Bound Books. He’s a cancer survivor. His friends call him fox, being his totem animal, and his motto is: Wrecking civilization one story at a time. Site: www.tfoxdunham.com. Blog: http://tfoxdunham.blogspot.com/. http://www.facebook.com/tfoxdunham & Twitter: @TFoxDunham

From Horror Author T. Fox Dunham:

“I am the blighted one,” the voice spoke with its own flesh mouth, before the warriors came and ripped it from him. 
-- Digging Sandcastles by T. Fox Dunham

Available now from editor Florence Ann Marlowe and Noodledoodle Press, Terror at the Beach, featuring stories from many excellent horror authors and my short story. 

 TABLE OF CONTENTS: John 20:29' by Delphine Bosswell 'Meltdown' by Daniel Breitenfeldt 'Undercurrent' by David Court 'By the Light of A Drowning Sun' by Matthew R. Davis 'Digging Sandcastles' by T. Fox Dunham 'Under The Boardwalk' by Robert Hart 'The Sand Whirl' by David Longshore 'Salt Water Taffy' by Florence Ann Marlowe 'The Best Honeymoon Ever' by T. M. McLean 'Canned Crab' by Nick Nafpliotis 'Ride the Devil' by J. T. Seate 'Tourist Trap' by A. P. Sessler 'The Dare' by Gregory St. John.