This wasn’t a sighting per se, as I never actually got a good look at whatever decided to antagonize me. I can’t decide if at makes me happy or if it made the experience all the more terrifying.
I live in a rural part of Maryland that is chock-full of weird creatures and spooky folktales. Big Liz, Werewolves in Delaware, Swampman of Delmarva, the list goes on. But the Goatman just seemed too farfetched to me. That is until the spring of 2003.
My parents had moved us to a new house the previous year. A dilapidated, run down old thing but I loved it for one reason: it sat on nearly four acres of woods. It was plenty of space to roam and explore as a young kid. Christmas the year prior had been nice, giving me a few girly things but also some new outdoorsy things like a bb gun and a swiss knife. But the thing that I loved the most was this silly little Charmander clock that would make Charmander noises and play a snippet of the Pokemon theme as an alarm. I set the thing religiously every night and woke up ready to conquer everything school could throw at me the next day.
One day, I set my alarm as usual but when it went off at 6:30 all hell broke loose. A huge force hit the wall of my bedroom from outside, shaking the entire house and causing things to fall from my shelf. I yelped and fell out of bed. Sitting there in the floor I wondered what had happened until my Mom came back, red-faced in anger. “What the HELL are you doing?” She screeched at me. I stammaered out some kind of reply but I really had no good answer beyond ‘it wasn’t me’. As you can imagine that went over really well.
Shrugging it off, I got ready and left for school. When I got home I ran back to my room. I looked all over the wall, the floor, there was nothing that could’ve generated that much force even if it fell. I then went outside and looked at the outside wall of my bedroom. I found nothing but a weird set of prints. It was hard to tell exactly what they were because of the grass but it left enough of a print for me to tell that it was cloven. The tracks seemed to have torn up the ground slightly, as if it had been next to the wall when my alarm went off and had gotten spooked. The yellow siding on the house was dented and warped but I just chalked that up to it’s age. The implications otherwise were terrifying. Feeling uneasy, I went back inside and for the most part forgot about the thump. I would still hear strange noises if I stayed up late or if I snuck out to the livingroom after midnight to watch anime. As if something were grunting and sniffing at he windows. I never got up the courage to look. Occasionally I would see flashes of brown moving through the trees during the day. I stopped going off the trails in the woods, eventually avoiding it altogether.
A few months later, near the end of summer, my best friend came over to spend the weekend with me. For the sake of the story, we’ll change her name to Susy. Now Susy didn’t exactly jump at the chance to go running through the woods like I did, but she would walk trails with me sometimes if she was feeling generous. She must have been feeling really generous this day as she actually suggested we go for a walk. I hadn’t told anyone that I had stopped going out there so, of course, I was caught in my own foolish pride and away we went. The walk started out pleasant enough: good company, beautiful trees, singing birds. So I eventually relaxed and enjoyed the hike even as we looped around and were headed back. That is until the birds stopped singing and every hair on the back of my neck stood up.
“Hey” a voice called. I must have jumped twelve feet in air. Of all things I’d expected, a voice didn’t even make the list. Susy called out “Who’s there?” The voice chuckled. I felt shivers run up my spine. That sound was earily similar to the sniffing noises I’d been hearing at night.
“You both look so cute. Why don’t you come over here?” the voice said. It sounded odd, like having a sore throat and they were trying to overcompensate by anunceating every word. The kicker was that the voice sounded kind of like my brother and kinda like the neighbor, switching between the tones like it couldn’t decide who to be. Survival mode kicked in and I looked deeper into the woods, trying to pinpoint the stranger. Last thing I wanted was for us to run smack dab into some psycho’s open arms.
“Especially you, Sarah. You look so cute.” Nope. Done. Realizing the voice was off to the left, deeper into the woods, I grabbed Susy’s hand and dashed back to the house. Susy, still shaken looked at me with frightened eyes. We didn’t speak of it again. We just pretended it hadn’t happened at all. Hindsight 20/20 we probably should have. It could have been a pervert for all we knew then.
A few years later and I’m crusing the web when I come across a site for strange things in Maryland. While reading, I learn more about the goatman, going per than just his ridiculous origin tale. I laughed at first and started reading. The farther I got, the more relieved I am that we moved to a new house not to long after our encounter. The Goatman supposedly can mimic voices, luring people to their deaths. He’s been known to throw his body against cars. And he more often than not has cloven hooves. I can say that I am glad I never actually saw the Goatman. What little I experienced was quite enough thank you very much.
I drove by that house not too long ago since I was feeling a bit nostalgic and was in the area. It’s falling down now due to neglect and a sinking foundation. But the dent in the siding is still there and the woods seem to be the same. I just know that I’m not going back there to check.