This happened more than 20 years ago, back in 1993 when I was still an incoming fourth grader. I shared a room with my brother, who was an incoming high school freshman at the time.
It started when my grandmother (may her soul rest in peace) purchased a small, 60-centimeter (about 24 inches) Santo Niño statue with green cape on December 1992 for us to place in our room. It was later placed on top of the four-foot-high cream-colored cabinet there.
She was a devout Catholic who believed we needed to have a sacred relic to keep evil away. In the Philippines, where 85-90% are Catholics, many people have such statues. Also, the statue served as a Christmas gift of sorts.
While we also were Catholics, we didn’t really pray to it or anything. It was simply just there. Sometimes, it would collect dust but even at that point we never really bothered with it.
We generally kept our room clear of clutter. However, we seldom would dust the shelves and cabinets since we found this to be too repetitive and tedious. We were just too lazy about it. The only time we would dust the tops was when our mother would tell us to do it, which was months far in between.
In the summer of 1993, my brother went on vacation for about a week, leaving me temporary sole occupancy of our room. I remember feeling ecstatic about this, because this was the first time I would have the room to myself.
On the first night I was alone, I woke up in the middle of the night. There wasn’t any noises or anything that would cause me to wake up. I just did, for some reason. I tossed and turned, trying to get back to sleep but to no avail. I suddenly got the feeling of being watched, so I sat up on my bed looking around the room. The light from the street light outside dimly illuminated the room.
No one else was inside the room, and no one was standing outside the window. Still, I felt there were eyes on me somehow.
It was then that I noticed something off with the statue. It seemed to have moved closer to the edge of the cabinet. It also appeared to be positioned in such a way that it was facing me. It normally faced the center of the room, and my bed was on the farthest left side facing the door while my brother’s bed was to the right wall. I knew this was off, but I didn’t really make a fuss about it. I decided to get back to sleep.
When I woke up in the morning, the Santo Niño was right there where it should be, and positioned as it should be.
For the succeeding three nights, I would wake up in the middle of the night with the feeling of being watched. No matter how I tried, I could never find the cause of this feeling.
It was on the morning of the fifth day when I noticed something different. The Santo Niño was slightly off of its position. I knew this because of the circular clean spot the size of the statue’s pedestal right in the middle of the cabinet top. No other spot that big should be clean, except the exact spot where the Santo Niño should have been.
Again, I shrugged this off and placed the Santo Niño in its proper place. That night was the same as the previous nights; the feeling of eyes on me was still there.
The morning of the sixth day was even weirder than the previous one. This time, I found the Santo Niño near the edge of the cabinet; the edge closest to mine. The marks on the top of the cabinet was unmistakable also. The clean spot in the center was there. Furthermore, there were now lines, dust trail marks, starting from that clean spot which ended right to where the Santo Niño was.
This time, I freaked out and told my parents about it. They checked it out, and saw what I saw. However, the dismissed it on account of me being not used to sleeping alone. Until then, I have never slept by myself. They placed the Santo Niño back and went on their day like nothing happened.
Meanwhile, I was freaking out. I didn’t want to sleep another night in my room alone. So that night, I ended up sleeping in the living room. As soon as my parents were asleep, I let our dog, Richard, into the house. Richard normally slept outside the house to guard the my father’s prized roosters. Richard and I shared the sofa. In the middle of that night, I woke up again but this time to the sound of Richard’s low growls. He was facing my room’s closed door. I don’t know how long that went on, since I eventually drifted back to sleep.
My brother went home a day earlier than expected. I told him everything about what was happening in the room. Of course, he didn’t believe me and picked on me for being such a wuss.
His presence didn’t make the situation go away. For the next few nights, I kept getting that same feeling. In the morning, both of us would see the Santo Niño being out of place which my brother attributed to me.
One night was probably the worst of all. That night, I once again got woken up. This time, I could see the Santo Niño move. The correct word would be slide. It slid across the top of the dresser, until eventually it fell to the ground still upright.
It then slowly slid on the floor, heading to my bed.
I stared at it as it did so. However, at one point the light from the street lamp illuminated its face.
It was the most hideous face I’ve ever seen. The statue’s face was contorted, like it was smiling and frowning at the same time. Its grin revealed tiny triangular teeth in its mouth.
I knew this thing was supposed to be holy. But at that time, it felt as if I was looking at pure evil. I was so afraid, tears rolled out of my eyes uncontrollably.
If I didn’t do anything, I wouldn’t make it through the night. This was what went through my mind as cold sweat started breaking.
It took another few seconds for me to realize that my brother was sleeping just on the opposite side of the room. I looked to him, and he was sound asleep.
I turned back to the Santo Niño on the floor. Somehow, it was now a lot closer to the foot of my bed.
I mustered up enough courage to set my feet on the floor and jump onto his bed.
He’s normally a light sleeper, with the slightest of noise being enough to rouse him. But at that time he didn’t wake up from the ruckus I made. I had to forcefully grab his shirt by the sleeves and shake him as violently as I could.
As soon as he woke up, he slapped me across the face hard.
“The f*ck are you doing?! Get back to your bed! You’re all sweaty and gross!” he exclaimed.
His anger gave way to confusion as my shaking hand pointed to the floor near my bed.
“If you woke me up because of a stupid cockroach, I swear I’ll beat…” my brother’s voice trailed off as he realized what I was pointing to.
“What the hell is that thing doing there?” he asked.
I couldn’t speak because I was openly crying by then.
I saw how his eyes widen. I looked to floor, only to see the Santo Niño now halfway between my bed and my brother’s bed.
It was then that my brother realized that I was telling the truth all along.
We sat there, horrified. We both kept our eyes on that unholy statue until the sunlight made its way into our room.
We became braver come sunrise.
Without speaking another word, my brother grabbed his blanket and spread it on top of that thing. He then tied the blanket and brought it outside to the garage. As soon as Richard saw the blanket, he barked like crazy.
My brother grabbed a hammer and kept pounding away at the Santo Niño inside the blanket. He kept at it until the thing’s shape could no longer be discerned through the blanket.
“We need to get rid of this thing,” my brother said. He then grabbed a bottle from the worktable.
With that, we went to the next neighborhood on foot, along with Richard. We made our way to the local playground, and since it was so early in the morning there wasn’t anyone there yet.
He grabbed a couple of loose iron bars and told me to dig at one of the spots there. We dug a hole about four feet deep.
He then threw the blanket-covered remains of the Santo Niño into the hole. He spilled the liquid contents of the bottle he took, lit a match and threw it in setting the blanket on fire. It actually took him maybe four or five tries before being able to successfully light up the thing.
The wind blew hard that morning, but the fire kept going until there was nothing but ashes left in the hole. Richard kept barking the whole time.
We then buried the ashes and left to get back home in silence.
Eventually, that particular playground became overgrown and abandoned. Until this day, there are rumors spreading across that neighborhood about disembodied voices being heard by some children left unattended there.
My brother and I never talked about what happened. At some point, my brother became an atheist while I became more of an agnostic. I can’t help but think that this incident is one of the main catayst for our current religious stances.
We’ve drifted apart after the years, to the point where we only consider ourselves brothers on paper. Minor arguments led to major ones. One argument came after the other. It’s probably been a decade since I last talked to him.
Since then, I’ve also developed an irrational fear of statues. I can no longer stand being inside Catholic churches, Buddhist temples or any places of worship with statues. If I’m within the vicinity of one, I sweat and tremble. If I stay with it any longer, I panic.
When I was in Bangalore (India), my Indian co-workers didn’t know what to do with me when we entered a Hindu temple because I panicked.
All of this, because of that haunted Santo Niño.
One psychic I told this story to said that the reason why the sacred relic became the way it was was because it wasn’t able to attract positive energy as no one prayed in its presence. She also explained that possessions do not just happen to people similar to “The Exorcist”. Possessions can also be connected to places, or in this case, inanimate objects.
This is my first true paranormal experience. It was after this that I started experiencing many other ones in my lifetime.