The Ranch House

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When i was 8, my sister and I were living with our mom in a small house near Camp Lejune in North Carolina. One day, i looked out my window and saw that there was a ramshackle house a couple blocks down. My mom let my sister and I go anywhere in our small community, so my sister and I decided to investigate. Our neighbors, Jessica and Marcia joined us. When we steeped inside the abandoned house, it smelled of mold, mildew, and cat urine. Jessica made a comment about it smelling like death, and I noticed Marcia shoot her a glance. Jessica didn’t say anything more. After we left, i had a feeling something was watching me. I looked back and saw nothing. The other 3 were completely normal. A few weeks later, my sister and I had gone to a pool party and we heard 2 teenagers talking about the ranch house near my house. As we listened, one of them said “Yeah. But, he was never found.” We were intrigued, so we asked my mom about it. She said the old house hadn’t been lived in for at least 15 years. I asked her why exactly, and she told me that a man who used to live in it went hunting in Pennsylvania and was expected to be back within a week. He never returned. After 11 days, there was a search party of about 300 people searching North Carolina and Pennsylvania. Even thought the search was long and exhaustive, no trace of the man was ever found. A few nights later, my sister shook me awake and told me to look out the window. I looked outside at the house in the distance and saw a bright light upstairs. I looked at my sister and she nodded, meaning that was what she wanted me to see. The next day, we woke up at 5 and dressed quietly. Our mom would kill us if she saw we were outside at that time. We both creeped over to the house – which was now dark – and looked inside. We saw something we hadn’t seen before. It was an old shoe. We both distinctly remembered no shoe being there when we had checked a couple weeks ago. My sister said it was either a prank or someone with a twisted sense of humor. A few days before the school year began and we had to move back with our dad, I looked one more time and saw someone walking towards the house. I ran towards the house and arrived to see the 2 teens setting down a coat on the floor. When they saw me watching, they froze and acted natural. I asked them about the shoe and they said they were putting stuff in the house and did it to scare the “C-Kids” which was their slang for city kids. They led me upstairs and showed me that the light my sister and I had seen was a spotlight they had been operating that night. I asked them about something I had seen that my sister didn’t. I had seen a filmy white figure roaming the house a couple nights after the pool party. I asked them which one of them it was and they both looked at the floor, then at each other, then at me. “That wasn’t us” they said. All of a sudden, all 3 of us had a feeling something was staring at us. We ran downstairs, but the feeling stayed with us. The 2 teens both looked back and screamed. I looked back and then it was MY turn to scream! We all saw a figure of a man with only half a face. The 2 teens were both 16, so they didn’t know that the man had gone missing while hunting. They only knew he was never found. We all decided that what we were looking at was the ghost of him. We attributed his bloody shirt to mean he was either shot or suffered an accident. The half-face? We aren’t sure about that. He shook a fist at us and then yelled. It was the most terrifying yell I’ve ever heard. It was something between a panther and screeching tires. We all ran without looking back again and burst into my house. My sister and mom looked up and saw all 3 of us collapsed on the floor. My mom asked what happened and we quickly said that we were scared because we saw a wolf (my house was across the street from some woods.) I told my sister before our dad arrived on the day we moved back and she didn’t say anything. I guess she believed me. To this day, I still think about that house. Did somebody buy it? If so, did they figure out the deal with the ghost? Was the ghost just melancholy or sinister? Also, will he ever find peace?
Note: A few weeks after I moved back, a man’s body was found in Allentown. He had half of his face missing, which was attributed to scavengers.

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