The Holidaymaker Ghost

When I was in my early 20s my parents bought a new house 2 hours away from where I lived. It was a two storey home near the ocean with the bedrooms upstairs and the living areas downstairs. After they had settled in I went to visit them and stayed the night in the spare bedroom. Everything seemed normal when I went to bed and sleeping somewhere new has never bothered me so I fell asleep easily.

I woke up during the night and heard someone walking around upstairs. The floors were timber so I could clearly hear what was footsteps walking down the hall and around the stairwell. I checked my phone, it was 3am. I assumed one of my parents had gotten up to get a drink so I thought nothing of it. Minutes passed, and the footsteps continued. After 10 minutes I got up to see what was happening, neither of my parents are sleep walkers so I wondered if something was wrong. I open the door to a pitch black hallway. I stood there for a moment and could no longer hear footsteps. I went to look in my parents room as their bedroom door down the hall was ajar. Both my parents were asleep in bed. I assumed whichever of them had got up had gone back to bed as soon as I opened the spare room door, so I went back to bed and thought nothing of it.

I had trouble falling back asleep. I laid in bed feeling like something was off. I told myself that timer floors creak all the time, so it was probably just in my head that it sounded like footsteps. As I started to close my eyes, I heard it again, the creaking of footsteps on the upstairs timber floors. I went cold. I told myself one of my parents is awake, that was all, just go back to sleep…but I couldn’t. I heard one of them slowly walk down the hall and to the stairwell. This time the footsteps were much louder like they were stomping. I got up immediately, willing myself to open the door to check, to prove to my overactive imagination that this was just one of my parents going to get something. I opened the spare room door and the stomping abruptly stopped. Once again, I stared into the pitch black hallway, although this time I had a gut wrenching feeling something was staring back at me. It made me feel cold inside. I turned on the bedroom light, illuminating the hallway. It was empty. I went to my parents room, and again, they were both still asleep. I went to the stairwell and couldn’t see anyone so I started walking back to the spare room when I heard the footsteps now downstairs. I froze, thinking someone has broken into the house, I ran back into the spare room to get my phone to call the police if the footsteps continued. As I entered the spare room and closed the door behind me, I instantly heard loud thumping footsteps upstairs, hastily moving towards the spare room door. I was paralysed with fear. The footsteps stopped right outside the spare room door. My whole body was cold. Whoever was in the house was now standing directly outside the spare room, inches away from where I stood on the other side of the door.

I stood there for what felt like hours but I finally got up the nerve to open the door. I held my hand on the door handle and told myself there is a logical explanation, that I don’t know the sounds this new house makes, that it would make no sense for there to be a person standing in the hallway, waiting at my door, and that I was safe. But I didn’t feel safe. I turned the door handle, and looked out into a completely empty, dark hallway. I took a deep breath, closed the door and listened. Nothing. No footsteps. I turned the bedroom light off, got into bed and sat staring at the door to until sunrise. No matter how many time I told myself I’m safe, I was still too prettified to sleep or move. No more footsteps. Light finally started filling in through the bedroom window, it was morning.

When I finally could hear my parents stir, I went out to talk to them about what had happened during the night, expecting them to tell me it’s just a creaky house, or to laugh at how silly I was to be scared…. but that’s not what happened. When I explained to my mum what I heard she replied “Oh, that’s the man who used to live here, he walks around sometimes.” I looked at her in shock and disbelief. I yelled back “What the hell do you mean? Like he still has a key and comes into the house!? That’s insane! Mum why haven’t you told someone? Called the police?” To which my mum replied very casually “No honey, he died here. He was leaving for vacation with his wife one day, they had packed their bags and the taxi had just arrived out the front. He picked up the bags, walked to the stairwell and tripped on the top flight of stairs. He broke his neck falling down the stairs and died instantly. The real estate had to disclose it to us when we bought the house. What they didn’t tell us is there he still walks around at night.” I stood there, staring at my mother, trying to fathom what she had just said, and how calmly she had said it. She continued “Don’t worry, he won’t hurt you. We usually hear him walking to the stairwell, leaving the house for his holiday.”

Safe to say I never stayed at my parents new house again.

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