Yet another two fingers of brandy and down it went in two quick burning gulps. That should do it! I hoped. So with a warm glow spreading nicely in my belly, I headed off to bed. Perhaps a little tipsy, but now with real hopes of passing out for the night uninterrupted. No nightmares tonight Mr. Sandman I pleaded. But in the end, I suppose he wasn’t listening. Or more likely — just didn’t give a damn!
This entry is a chronological continuation from a series of posts entitled Nightmares. This one, a follow-up to my previous post “Black Cat and the Legend of Old Man Griffin.” For the sake of fluidity, perhaps a quick read would be advised? — Hey, I’m just saying!
It was midnight. I found myself (again?) standing across the street from the old haunted Griffin house of my childhood. A place shunned by children and adults alike. Long abandoned, the old and dilapidated house sat eerily in shadows — even in the darkness of night.
From the house, spewed an ominous foreboding, an evil presence born of history and legend. For that was where old man Griffin had long-ago murdered his entire family. Then, took his own life as well. Where evil is said to still walk its haunted grounds because Murder and Suicide as we all know, never rest easy!
Now it seems, this very night… I’ve been called to visit this childhood place of horror. “I think your suppose to go there” a confident and somewhat familiar voice spoke inside my head. Words I’ve heard somewhere before?
And for a moment, just for a moment, I almost had it! I could almost remember that conversation from a previous dream. Wait? A previous dream? But that implication, though seemingly important, clouded my focus even more and soon both thoughts drifted away as if made of smoke. Light wisps of smoke on a windy day.
THE OLD GRIFFIN PLACE
The house itself was a big broken-down paint-peeling two-story aberration. Set back a bit from the road. Even in childhood it had sat empty there for some 20 years or so. Now old and decrepit, weather-beaten and run-down, with a long front yard left growing wild with years of neglect.
A local eyesore to say the least in an otherwise well-kept and well-maintained neighborhood. Yet one hardly even noticed it when walking bye. Even on the brightest of summer days the house itself seemed to be in constant shadows.
And it wasn’t that you couldn’t see the place from the front sidewalk while walking bye — more like you didn’t consciously see it! Whether these few seconds of blindness came from your own subconscious mind or from the house itself, remains a matter of opinion.
But the kids knew it was there. They could feel its evil presence. They knew about the old passed-down stories and the murders that happened there. But most of all, they feared its calling. How it would softly whisper your name enticing you to come closer if you got too near. Now the house was again calling. This time, calling me!
A soft giggling, drifting insanely on the wind in anticipation.
“Come little one, come closer… I’ve been waiting for you for so long.”
THE EVIL WITHIN
Even from the sidewalk out front, the house itself was just a gray outline hidden inside a midnight backdrop. In the front yard, tall wild-growing grasses, unattended in decades, were bending wave-like with the wind. They too, seemingly whispering my name.
The cracked and crumbling cement walkway leading up to the porch disappeared into the darkness less than halfway up. A tentative first step and the midnight wind exhaled in warning. Blowing harder now, a cold angry gusting rather than a light (laughing) breeze.
The temperature dropped suddenly and the dark autumn night — became darker still.
All the while the house continued whispering its haunting call, urging me ever forward and now I’ve lost control, caught up in its evil spell of power and wanting. Slowly, step by step, the house grows nearer.
A rustling behind me and when I look back the tall wind-blown grass is now entangled and overlaps the walkway behind me barring my return. As if nature itself, bows to the commands of the demon that lives here.
Up on the porch, an old wooden rocking chair (that I somehow knew was there but couldn’t see) began to creak unceremoniously, rocking gently back and forth. That was where old man Griffin, after murdering his family, put a shotgun under his chin and blew his life away. Splattering his diseased brain all over in back of him.
As if in celebration of this horrifying scene, a dark evil presence now makes itself known, shrouding over the night and raising the hairs on my skin. A gasp escapes me, one of horror and surprise.
An evil darkness falls upon me, its ancient hatred weighing me down and trying to worm its way into my head. Into my heart! Seeking to void me of all that is good, all that is pure and white, and replace it instead with a black sickness, of malevolent evil contempt.
As if fighting for my very soul, I push back against this unholy intrusion and somehow succeed in casting its vileness away. “Be gone vile demon”, I shout out in triumph! My heart hammering in my chest.
Ah but my victory was all but an illusion. His responding rage cowers me in its intensity as a thundering roll of madness echoes around me! Penetrates through me! And drops me to my knees.
Yet still my nightmare is only beginning.
The still shadowed gray image of the house suddenly expands before my eyes, seemingly rising up from its very foundation; boards groaning in protest, nails popping with tension, looming ever larger before me. I cry out in fear and repulsion, yet still kneeling as if in sinful praise of this unholy aberration. In disgust I rise to my feet.
Now a blackness, darker than the night itself, festering from the house like a rapidly spreading virus. A low ground-hugging death-shroud of darkness. Of disease, and pestilence. A harbinger for the Apocalypse and a forewarning of evil and dark days yet to come. When it drew upon me, I shivered in its evil shadow.
The moon was suddenly gone and the stars were no longer shining. I looked down at my feet at the black hugging shadow and saw visions of open-mouthed faces screaming in agony. Horrified, my consciousness wavered and I stumbled weak legged trying not to go down.
All the while the house loomed larger, with an ever nearing evil presence that washed over you like a demons foul breath. A lunatic not without intelligence but suffering from a long horrible mental illness.
And now, I was beyond terrified!
I turned wanting desperately to run, to flee this madness, escape the insanity of this nightmare. Yet my body wouldn’t respond. It was frozen with fear and what little steps I could manage seemed to be in slow motion.
All the while, the demon draws nearer.
Then laughter! No-longer low and enticing, but ever rising in volume, coming from the darkened and diseased bowel of insanity itself. No! I was screaming. No … Stay away!
The air seems to thicken around me, leaving a heavy void of empty that takes away the voice of my horrified screams. Yet still the sounds of insane laughter, penetrating and rising in crescendo coming from the house with its dark spreading shadow snapping eagerly at my feet. The faces within, screaming back at me in silence.
When all seemed hopeless, on the very edge of defeat, my lungs suddenly filled with new-found air. With the spell temporarily broken, I turned back towards where I came, desperate to make good my escape. Yet my fear is out of control and I run blindly with terrifying haste. Babbling words of nonsense, I run wild into the night.
Running in terror, running for my life, my heart hammering in my chest until suddenly I’m falling … falling … and then down.
Then horror upon horror, the house drew my eyes, and in the second story window a light came on and … dear God … I could see pairs of hanging feet … dangling lifeless … suspended in mid-air half-way up the bedroom window. Feet that belonged to the hanging bodies of the Griffin family, somehow there again hanging suspended with a rope around their necks tied to the rafters up above them.
Now the laughter becomes a booming roar of triumph and an impossible evil blackness comes bursting through the front door shattering the ancient wood into millions of tiny pieces.
The explosion rocked me, blew away my paralysis, hurried me to my feet and once again I was up and moving. Fleeing in terror while an unseen evil chased me through the tall entangled grass barrier that was reaching out in hunger, longing to pull me down into its tangled fields of darkness.
Behind me, an unimaginable evil, screaming its madness, angered by my attempts at escape. I dared not turn to look upon it, for the sight would surely send me insane. And so I ran even faster. Fear pushing me above and beyond my own limitations …
OVER BUT NOT?
As I raced passed the boundary of the Griffin’s property, so too did the ominous haunting presence wink out. And that of his animated evil house as well. Yet still I bounded across the street in terror and only once there, looking back and pausing to catch my breath.
“You have to go back” a black cat nodded, suddenly there at my feet.
“What?” I said in disbelief… hands on my knees bent over gasping for air.
“You have to go back to the old Griffin Place” the cat repeated.
“For It is written in the very fabric of reality itself”
And with that, the cat too, — winked out!
MORE HAUNTING NIGHTMARES COMING SOON!