Guest Post: Matticus Meets a Ghost

Please welcome my guest blogger, Matt from TheMatticusKingdom.  Tell him what you would name your ghost, share your favorite haunting stories, visit his blog, and pass a little rawr-love his way! http://thematticuskingdom.wordpress.com

A hot dry wind is blowing outside.  It’s a strong one too.  (… Wind Advisory remains in effect until 3 PM PST this afternoon…  A Wind Advisory for coastal areas means that winds of 35 mph or greater are expected. Use extra caution.)  The foundation of the house shakes.  The windows rattle.  The walls creak and groan.  The rafters screech…

I grew up in a haunted house.

Not this house:

“They’re he-eere!”
“They’re he-eere!”

I didn’t grow up in this house either, but that would have been fine if I had:

“I guess some might call this a mansion rather than a house, but… do we really want to get into semantics?”
I guess some might call this a mansion rather than a house, but… do we really want to get into semantics?

No, the house I grew up in was just your average ordinary suburban home: three bedrooms, two baths, a pool, a lawn out front and out back, and a brick wall separating our yard from the other neighbors.  The inhabitants were all fairly normal too: parents, sibling, assorted pets, and one ghost.

Well, at least one ghost.  There was one everyone agreed upon seeing anyway.  I guess there could have been others and they just took turns haunting our home.  None of us were experts in the paranormal so we couldn’t say for sure that we were seeing the same entity each time.  The number of ghosts sharing our home with us is kind of beside the point, as just one ghost qualifies as a haunting.  So, yes, I grew up in a haunted house.

We called our ghost George.  (That’s a family joke and a story for another day.)  He never tried to hurt us, he never really interacted with us, we would just see him from time to time walking down the hallway and standing in the family room.  He was a friendly ghost, unlike this one:

“Come on in, I’ve just set out some hot tea and cookies.”
“Come on in, I’ve just set out some hot tea and cookies.”

Well, everyone else saw him and would share their stories around the dinner table.  I never did.

After the first of the “George” stories surfaced and each of my parents and my brother saw the shadow and shape, felt the presence, and caught the movement from the corner of the their eyes I enthusiastically waited for my turn to catch a glimpse of our housemate.  I waited and waited and waited.  The years passed and their stories continued without getting to add one of my own.  For a time I wondered if it was all an elaborate ruse my parents and brother had concocted to mess with me.  Eventually, I stopped believing I would ever see him.

I added on a few more years and the stories around the dinner table became fewer and far between and then ceased altogether.  Either George had stopped popping in to say hello or the joke had grown old.  Our ghost was all but forgotten.

Then my brother, three years older than me, left for college.  I was left alone for the first time in the room we had shared for my entire cognitive life.  That night, that first night alone, something woke me up.  I opened my eyes and saw George standing next to my bed.

It was a shape, a distortion of light, something definitely standing there while not really being there at all.  And then it moved.  The head, what I perceived as the head, turned towards me and then turned towards my brother’s empty bed.  George then turned and walked out of the room, pausing briefly to peer into my parents’ bedroom before disappearing down the hall.

He had come to check on me, to make sure I was going to be okay.  And I was. I was going to be, it was all going to be fine. I fell back to sleep.

Over the following three years, before I too left for college, I saw George off and on.  Sometimes he would come into my room and sometimes he would just stand in the hall.  He would stay long enough to see that I was still doing okay and then he would go on his merry way.

Wind always reminds me of George, who I haven’t seen since I left home 13 years ago, not because the howls and groans are noises I associate with him but because they are noises I don’t associate with him.  Our ghost wasn’t a poltergeist, he was a guardian.

George is a friendly ghost,
The friendliest ghost I know.
Our guardian
He has ever been,
Our family loves him so.
(Adapted from the Casper theme.)

_____________________________

Now that you love TheMatticusKingdom as much as I do, check out his blog for his unique perspectives on writing and entertainment,  as well as enviable writing samples, and every day types of inspiration and motivation.  If I were you, I’d start here:

http://thematticuskingdom.wordpress.com/2013/01/08/a-teacher-worthy-of-praise/
http://thematticuskingdom.wordpress.com/2012/08/02/chapter-1/
http://thematticuskingdom.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/now-were-talking/

34 Comments

  1. I have a “ghost” called Mr. Allan. He is a former chaos deity devolved into an annoying tw*t who messes with my holiday bookings and draws arcane symbols on the wall in my linen closet. I suspect he is naked except for his top hat.

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    1. Mr. Allan doesn’t sound very friendly at all, messing with holiday bookings and the like. I can see about sending George your direction to maybe have a quiet word with Mr. Allan if you like?

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  2. I never grew up with ghosts, but there WAS a ghost children’s book I loved growing up about a little friendly ghost named Georgie who thwarts some robbers. Maybe yours was the same one, grown up!

    Also, I once worked in a living history museum of legitimately antique houses all moved to one location from all over New England, which many staff people said were full of ghosts. I never encountered any of them, though the house *I* frequented the most was said to be haunted by the ghost of a former living history interpreter who just loved the museum so much he never left.

    Also, I got really confused seeing this post in my reader, thinking it was Matticus’ blog and ending of at Rara’s. Nice switcheroo, bloggies!

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    1. I’m haunting Rara’s blog today, much like George haunted my house. Spooky, right? The historian ghosts sound like fun. Are you dissapointed you never saw one, or releived, or both or neither?

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      1. Probably both, although evangelical Christians (of which I am one) typically have a rather low view of such entities, and I remember at the time claiming responsibility for why no one else saw any while I was working there either. Now I feel like that was a little obnoxious but . . . still kinda funny . . .

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  3. I also grew up with a ghost, actually several of them. One from my childhood follows me wherever I go. I named him Abe since he is rather tall, slim and has on a tophat. Ah the stories I could tell. Thanks for this one.

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      1. I will have to write about Abe now I guess. It really is interesting. Especially how he follows me around. He is never threatening. He’s just….there. My family lived in a very haunted house. At one time there was even a poltergeist! Truth!

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  4. Gotta admit, never had a haunted house or a ghostly guardian. Our one house was brand new when we moved in, and the second one, while certainly old enough to host a haunt, never said much – that could’ve been the airplanes going overhead to land at O’Hare, though. Now THIS house I’m here in Ohio, this sucker is over 110 years old. I’ve never seen anything, but this house does talk with lots of creaks and groans, and I could swear there’s a pesky poltergeist moving my stuff around. (My wife blames it on pre-Alzheimer’s, and I can’t deny that as a DEFINITE possibility! 😀 )
    Great tale, though. Maybe you’ll gain a new spirit to stalk your blog halls. You’ll know him – he’s borderline insane, and comes from Chicago….. 😉

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    1. With initials “JE?” I’m familiar with that Chicago based ghost and would be honored to have him huanting my blog. My haunted house wasn’t all that old either, I think it was built just a couple years before my parents moved in, but when that desert wind kicked up it would talk up a storm – love that analogy!

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  5. Absolutely wonderful post!! In Suriname we have a deep rooted tradition of telling ghost stories. Being brought up in Holland always has me take them with a pinch of salt but I hear you when it comes to the wind. Whenever I am standing on a veranda in Suriname or walk in the forest in Holland I never feel I am completely alone.

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  6. There are eyes watching in the forest, and there are spirits in the wind… that’s how I’ve always felt anyway. A windstorm in the mountains is the best (and worst) of both – so much energy swirling about, you never feel alone.

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    1. Yet being the operative word, glad to see you are keeping your options open for any future encounters you may have. (And may they all be as nice as mine were.) Harvey certainly is a classic – and can’t think of it without aslo thinking of the call out from Shawshank Redemption – “A phantom. An apparition. Second cousin to Harvey the Rabbit. I conjured him out of thin air. he doesn’t exist… except on paper.” Who’s that you ask? Why, Peter Stevens, of course.

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      1. And Shawshank made my list this week of movies I watch every time they come on TV. We’ve come full-circle!

        I do believe in these opportunities though. My son was young when my mother died and I remember him saying that she spoke with him. If she had to visit someone, I am glad it was her grandchild 🙂

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  7. Nice story! George sounds like a nice guy. As a kid I really wanted my house to be haunted by a Casper-like ghost. There was nothing, not even a little “boo!”

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  8. Pingback: thematticuskingdom
  9. It’s really cool to see someone wiling to share a personal ghost story (well, outside of a cheesy reality tv show)! I’ll have to read the post on why you call him George! Maybe one day I’ll share some weird childhood experiences with ghosties of my own (maybe).

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