My former husband, Paul,
lived in many places while growing up, one of those being a tiny town called
Christy, Oklahoma. It has to be
noted that Paul is absolutely the last person given to flights of fancy.
In fact, my Witchy Ways were cited in our divorce as one of the main
reasons he was leaving. He said he
couldnít respect me if I believed in things that did not exist (in his
opinion) and he couldnít be with someone he didnít respect. I could appreciate more his stand had he not bothered to find someone
he could respect and snake her before letting the person he couldnít respect
know that he was leaving. Pffft.
Anyway, establish that Paul was actually quite resistant to ideas of
Paul could become another
person when you got a few beers in him, which took little more than a nudge and
an invitation most of the time that I knew him.
When he was drinking, Paul could be open and as speculative as anyone. It was during one of these times that he told me this story,
which I confirmed with his mother, from whom he inherited his skepticism and
Their house in Christy was a
giant, rambling thing that had once been on a farm.
It was turn of the century and a bit dilapidated.
There were two bedrooms downstairs (Paulís parents and Paulís older
sister, Bonnie) and two upstairs (Paul and, it would seem, The Ghosts). He was about 13-14 at the time and as soon as the lights
would go off and the world would still for the night, the voices would begin.
He said he would every night hear voices in various circumstances, laughing,
arguing, talking, whispering, but almost always there.
If anyone came up the stairs, the voices would stop.
At first, he thought the voices were his parentsí voices, floating up
from their room below, but the voices didnít change when his parents were out
for the evening. The voices would
be there every night that they lived in the house.
During the first rainstorm
after they moved in and every one thereafter, a huge, dark stain appeared at the top of the stairs, on
some of the stairs and at the bottom of the stairs.
Several times while trying to sleep (a commodity evidently in short
supply for Paul during the time they lived in this house), he was jarred by the
sound of a gunshot.
Some research into the
history of the house revealed that the couple who had built the house both died
there, along with a neighbor man. It
seems the wife was having an affair with the neighbor.
The husband returned home unexpectedly, found them in bed together and
shot them both, then, consumed with guilt and grief, shot himself at the top of
the stairs and fell to the bottom. It
happened to be in the middle of a rainstorm.
During the time they lived there, a tornado came through, turned their chicken coup upside down, destroyed a barn by the house and took out many of the neighboring houses. Their house was untouched. After a year or so, they moved to a different house in the same town and within a week of their moving, while the house remained empty, it burned to the ground.