Wrong Number

I lived in a house in the older section of my city. From the outside, the house looked just like any other 1950's house, but in the inside, my family had their own personal ghost. "Charlie", as we called him, started living with us when I was about 7 years old. I spent a lot of time as a child alone in the house, and it seemed that Charlie liked to visit with me the most. He would hide keys, move things, and stare at you around corners. He always wore bib overalls, and looked like a young man. My mother always reassured me that he couldn't hurt me, but I still was nervous and scared. Because he seemed to live in the pine closet in our basement, I never went down without my mother standing at the top of the stairs--and even then it was a quick trip. One summer, Charlie began to become more active. My mother had a plant that she had hanging from the kitchen window which she watered every morning. One day, while my mother and I sat at the table, the plant slowly began to spin in a circle. The plant began to spin faster and faster until it almost came off the hook. When my mom went to stop it, it would simply start over again.

Life continued, and summer vacation came around. I had to spend my days alone, so I would generally just call my friend at the same time every day to go over and play. One day, I picked up the phone to call her, and all I could hear on the phone was silence and a man's heavy breathing on the other end. The only way that could happen was if someone in the basement had picked up the receiver there. I knew that I was the only one there and that ALL the doors in the house were locked. Shakily, I said, "Who's there?, and the phone went dead. There was the sound of boxes being knocked over in the basement, but no one came up. I ran to my friend's house, and called my father to come home immediately. When he arrived, no one was in the basement, nothing was disturbed there, and there was no sign of forced entry into it. The phone company denied having anyone checking lines in our area. I guess Charlie just wanted to "reach out and touch someone"--I'm just glad he didn't get that far!

I lived in that house for 25 years, and my parents finally sold it. Charlie stayed in that house. On the last visit to the house that I made, I sat in the living room alone, thinking of all the memories there. Suddenly, a feeling of sadness, like a good bye came over me. There, in the hallway, I could feel Charlie. I guess Charlie was just saying his good byes! I hope he treats the house's new owners well.

Submitted by Montana, USA