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Halloween Writing Prompt: Spook

Definitions of spook.

1. A ghost; specter. Example: I am sure I saw a spook in the cellar.

2. Slang. an eccentric, unusual or odd person.

3. Slang. an espionage agent; spy. Example: Mr Gray was a spook for the CIA.

4. (verb used with object) to haunt. Example: That old house is spooked.

5. To frighten; scare. Example: She was spooked by the sudden appearance of the black cat.


Deborah Boydston

8th October 2014


The Illusive Spook Part One

(too long for the character limit so I have broken the account into two parts)

This is not so much a horror story as a true account of something that happened when I was growing up. It is not my intention to allege or deny the existence of the supernatural, but more so just give the details and let others make up their own minds.

As a young child I sometimes played a game in which I would enter a room with the lights out and see how long I could remain there until my fear of the dark compelled a hasty exit. Despite my best efforts I seldom seemed to break any records and the games failed to cure me of my fear of the dark.

Then one day, or night as the case may be, I became subject to a rather unsettling experience that unnerved me in a way that no other imagined supernatural experience had ever done before. I’m not sure how old I was at the time or exactly how or why it started happening but it became apparent that there was someone or something other than my family and pets dwelling within the household.

My experiences/encounters would occur whenever I went to the kitchen at night for a glass of water or something. I'd suddenly get the feeling that I was being watched from afar. A few seconds later that sensation would sort of materialize from above and unnerve me, sending chills down my back.

This would continue and, unnerved, I would make a quick exit from the kitchen with the sensation seemingly swooping down behind me. The sensation then would intensify as I went down the hallway and steer me away from the bathroom where it was the strongest and also living room which for some reason had always seemed the scariest room in the house (when dark). However once I reached my room it would promptly vanish and refuse to go any further, lingering in the hallway.

At first I was scared stiff of it and became distressed whenever I had to venture into the kitchen, which was quite frequent as I had to pass that way to get to the toilet (our toilet was separate from the bathroom). I felt this was intolerably unfair because it seemed to force me into a no win situation, either I was spooked each night or ended up wetting the bed. Thus I came up with a compromise which the spook seemed to accept.


Leslie Blackwell

11th October 2014


The agreement was that if I could get to the toilet and back to the bedroom again before the count of one hundred (giving me enough time to do what I had to do and wash my hands) it would leave me alone; a sort of unofficial lee way in which the spook would turn a blind eye toward my presence.

This worked in my favour most of the time but every now and the count would be marginal, motivating a sense of panic but I was determined never to run, no matter what the imagined consequence. Running down the hallway at night would of course arouse the curiosity of my family, who I hid these experience from at all costs. I felt too embarrassed to confess my irrational fears to them.

In the latter years of my childhood the encounters were quite acute and I often found myself increasing the “one hundred count” to “one hundred and fifty.” Then the spook seemed to randomise its starting point. Sometimes when I was in my room I would sense the presence of the spook waiting for me behind my door then slowly over the course of time it seemed to bother me less and less

I have no idea what it was but its intensity, imagined or otherwise, seemed too realistic to simply slot under the category of imagination. At times it occurred to me that I should (when I grew up) employ the services of a supernatural expert to confirm or deny the possibility that the house was haunted, other times I mulled over hypnotism to see if my fears had been engrained into my mind from some sort of very early childhood trauma, but of course I never did.


Leslie Blackwell

11th October 2014


For as long as I can remember, I have always sensed a presence in a room when no one else does. A room has a feeling for me; it is either warm and inviting or cold and oppressive. As a child, bedtime brought the fear to the surface in me. The darkness in a room allowed my mind to conjure horrible images and my blankets were my only protection. I wandered what lurked beneath my bed and my closet was where fear lived.

My mother would tuck me into bed at night and we would say our evening prayer and then she would kiss my cheek, turn on my nightlight and walk to my bedroom door, "Good night sweetheart, sleep tight" she would say and then she would shut off the main light and shut the door behind her.

It would be okay for a few minutes and I would start to relax and close my eyes and then I would look over at my closet. It was a sliding closet door and it would be open. My mother always made sure to close my closet doors but there it was opened and inside that closet door stood a woman looking over at me with a smile on her face. She looked just like my mother except older with gray hair and eyes of green instead of blue. She kind of glowed. She never did anything to scare me but her presence unnerved me to the core. I guess that is where the term "spook" comes from because I was most certainly, "spooked". It was really the questions that formed in my head that scared me more than she did. Where had she come from? Who is she? Why is she here and why is standing there smiling at me? She appeared in my room every night and every night my mother came running to my room to investigate my screams.

My mother would ask me what was wrong and why was I screaming. Clearly, she did not see the woman in the closet and she was quite visibly disturbed by my actions. She finally took action against the unknown spook in the closet. She sent me out of my room and shut the door. She began screaming at the unseen entity in the room. "Leave my daughter alone and don't you dare ever come back here again. My little girl is afraid of you." Once she said her piece, she opened the door and invited me back into the room. She told that the lady would not come back again to bother me and that everything would be okay. She tucked me back into bed and kissed my forehead.

I never saw the lady in the closet ever again but I have always been drawn to the paranormal. I still see things out of the corner of my eye. I still have my hair caressed or my should touched and I still hear voices. I take comfort in those presences now. I believe we all have guides to help us through our trials and tribulations.

Was the lady an old ancestor from my family? Who knows?


Cindy Beitinger

12th October 2014


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