A bizarre disturbance in her aura yanked her from a deep sleep.
With the comforting glow of her nightlight extinguished, blackness greeted her waking eyes and sparked a terror that gripped her gut.
Inside her chest, her pounding heart tattled her whereabouts to the phantoms from which she hid. Frozen with fear, she lay peering into the darkness at the foot of her bed and realizing the figure that stared back.
Her scream pierced the night.
As her frantic mother charged into the room; a sudden light from overhead blinded her.
"What's the matter?" mother asked.
Empowered by the light, she tossed her covers back and dove to the end of her bed, searching for the tormenting specter.
"Where is he?" she asked.
"Where is who?"
"The man...the one standing at the edge of my bed."
Her mother's posture went rigid. She moved to the closets and threw open the doors, only to reveal the clothing, shoes and games owned by a spoiled teenager.
"There's no one here. You must have been dreaming."
"But my nightlight?" She cried, pointing toward the malfunctioning beacon.
Her mother's lips pursed; an exhausted sigh escaped her. "The bulb just burned out. I'll go get you another."
On her bed, the adrenaline rush subsided. Trying to convince herself of her logical mother's assessment, she pushed to the back of her mind the similar occurences shared by her older sisters and friends: The dark man in the middle of the night, the disembodied murmurs in the basement, the echoing footsteps that filled silence.
Combing her fingers through a head full of unruly curls, she rose from the bed to discard the spent bulb from the light. But in her grip, the loose bulb tightened in the socket, and its sudden glow -- which usually gave comfort -- offered more disturbing evidence of the ghostly presence she feared.
* * *
SEND ME YOUR GHOST STORY! YOU MAY WIN A PRIZE!
I love a good ghost story -- especially ones that are true (like the one you just read). What better time for tales of ghouls and goblins than October?
Have you had problems with poltergeists? Annoyed by apparitions? Bothered by the boogeyman?
I want to hear about it.
I'm looking for more spooky specter stories -- preferably real experiences, but they can be made up, too -- to share on my blog during the week of Halloween. Share your creepy caper with me by e-mailing it to firstname.lastname@example.org
A prize will be given for the best one.
THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED.