THE BLACK CADILLAC

This story was told to me by my older brother and sister. It takes place back in the early to mid-1970's. On the Southside of the court-square in my hometown (Newnan,GA), there used to be a Cadillac dealership, at the time, one of the most prominent in the county. The dealership went out of business a couple of years after the incident I'm about to relate to you took place.

For several weeks in a row, a certain man, always dressed totally in black, would go to the dealership and admire one Cadillac in particular, a brand new, shiny black one with all the extras. The strange thing was, when one of the salesmen saw him and started out to meet the man, he would get in his car and leave the dealership, never allowing the salesman to get close enough to really get a good look at him. Every day he came, always at the same time, and always in the same vehicle which was also a black Cadillac, only an older model. The salesmen were really getting annoyed at the man and his strange behavior, so they hatched a plan. One of them would go out the next day, just before the time the man always showed up, and get into the black Cadillac and wait there for the man's daily visit.

The one salesman, I'll call him John, went out and waited for the man to show up. He never did. Nor did he the next day, nor the next. The salesmen decided the man wouldn't be back so they stopped going out to wait for him.

In the ensuing weeks, several people stopped to admire the black Cadillac, but once they got in it to test drive it, it would never crank. It was checked from one end to the other. Nothing could be found wrong. Even more strange was the fact that the car would always crank fine when there were no interested customers about.

One morning while John was at the dealership alone, he glanced out the office window and to his surprise, there was the man in black. Remembering his experiences with the man in the past, he didn't bother to get up and go out there, for he knew what the man would do if he did. So he continued on with his paperwork and forgot about it. A few minutes later, while his back was turned, he heard the bell on the door ring, signifying someone had entered the office. He turned to greet the customer with a smile on his face, and stopped short, for it was the man in black. The man could only be described as tall, lean, mid-sixties, to early-seventies, and ghostly pale. The man sat down in the chair in front of John's desk, pulled out his wallet, and laid approximately twenty-thousand dollars on the desk. John smiled widely. "So you finally decided you wanted the car, heh?." The man never spoke a word, just shook his head in the affirmative. No smile, no nothing, just a blank look on his face. John pulled out the necessary paperwork, handed it to the man, showed him where to sign, and told him to put down where he wanted the car delivered to. When this was done, the man stood up and, without a handshake or even a grin, turned and walked out of the building, leaving the cash where he'd placed it on the desk. He got in his old car and drove away.

Later on that day, after the car was newly washed and shined up, The other salesman, John's partner, came in. He couldn't believe the man had finally come back and bought the black Cadillac! He was even further stunned upon hearing that the man had paid cash for it. John gave his partner, I'll call him James, the address where the car was to be delivered, and told him the man hadn't even test drove the car. He'd simply come into the office, laid the cash on the desk, signed the paperwork and left.

James, shaking his head in awe, told John he'd be back as soon as he'd delivered the car and left. The car cranked the first time and he was on his way. Looking again at the address on the paperwork, he racked his brain trying to remember where the particular street was at. The address was: Lot #3, Oaklawn Way. That couldn't be right, he thought to himself. The man had made a mistake on the address, for the address he'd given was right smack dab in the middle of the cemetery. He looked on the paperwork for a phone number. There wasn't one. How was he going to get in touch with the man? he wondered. He stopped at a pay phone and looked up the man's name in the phone book provided. It was not there. He got back in the Cadillac and decided to go to the only Oaklawn Way that he knew of. He turned into the cemetery, feeling foolish but somehow compelled to go there. He found Lot #3. As he'd known it would be, it was a cemetery plot. Still feeling foolish, he got out of the Cadillac looking all around the cemetery for the man who'd purchased it, thinking that maybe for some reason the man had wanted to pick it up there. Maybe as a surprise for his wife or something. He saw no sign of anyone. He dropped his head trying to figure out what to do. All he knew to do was to go back to the office and wait for the man to come back or call and give him the right address. As he was turning, he caught the glimpse of a headstone directly in front of him, and part of a name. He did a double take when he read the full name on it. A chill coursed down his spine, for the name was that of the man who'd bought the black Cadillac. He rushed over to the Cadillac and grabbed the paper he'd brought with him, just to double check it against the name on the headstone. The name matched, as did the birth date. The date of death was one week before the Cadillac had been bought. How could that be?, he wondered. It has to be a coincidence. Not knowing what to do, James got in the Cadillac and went back to the office. John of course, asked him what was the problem. "You wouldn't believe me if I told you," answered James. "Try me," said John.

James told him about where the address had been and the name on the headstone. "You're right," said John, "I don't believe you. I guess all we can do is wait for him to call or come up here." The days turned into weeks. No call was ever received. No one ever came to claim the vehicle... That's the story. Hope you enjoyed it...

Cheryl


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