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Black Shape

June 2006

Some odd things have happened to me over the course of my life so far; but I can honestly say that this is the eeriest and weirdest thing I have ever experienced.

My husband and I had been married and living in our apartment for only about four months when this occurred. Much as I dislike describing house layouts, I have to do it here.
Our apartment is actually the first floor of a house (which, according to our landlady, is about 100 years old). There are no hallways, but all the rooms open onto each other off the kitchen, in kind of a square shape. When you go in the back entrance, you enter the huge kitchen immediately. In front of you, there are the main bedroom to the left and the living room to the right, with the kitchen stove in between. The bathroom door is at right angles to the living room door, and beside the bathroom is the refrigerator. On the other side of the fridge is a tiny room that we use as a computer room, then a second bedroom that we use as a study/spare room. Behind you is a door leading into a small pantry area, where the sink and all the cupboards are located. So, if you stand at the pantry sink, the kitchen will be on your left, and you'll have a good view of pretty much the entire apartment.

One day at the beginning of winter, about a year and a half ago, I was standing at the sink in the pantry washing dishes. My husband was at work, so I was alone in the house. This didn't disturb me at all, since I had never felt anything odd or bad about the place, and I tend to be able to pick up on a place's energy pretty well. I should also mention that it was early afternoon, and broad daylight.

As I was washing the dishes, I saw, out of the corner of my left eye but very distinctly, a black shape scooting across the kitchen floor, heading toward the bathroom. It vanished past the fridge, as if it had run into the bathroom. I only saw the thing, I heard no sound at all. I was startled by this, to say the least, and did a double-take. The first thing that crossed my mind was "Cat", although the form's features were indistinct. I'm a big cat lover and grew up with cats, and am familiar with the way they move. This thing was about the size and shape of a cat, and it moved like a cat. Only problem was, my husband and I have never had a cat in that apartment. Thinking one of the neighborhood cats had gotten in somehow, I went to the bathroom door to investigate. Nothing. The whole apartment was cat-free, and I saw nothing else out of the ordinary.
Well, I put it down to being stressed (I was unemployed at the time), or seeing a trick of the light, or having a floater in my eye, and thought no more of it. I did not tell my husband, however, as I thought it would freak him out; nor did I mention it to anyone else, friend or family.

Only four days later, we hosted a Super Bowl party and had several people over. As everyone was leaving late that night, one of my friends (I'll call her "Joanne") asked me, "Have you ever seen a cat in here?" I froze. I couldn't believe what I'd just heard. I hadn't told her anything about what I'd seen. Trying to cover up my fear, I said "Gee, I hope the landlady's cat didn't get in here." To my horror, Joanne replied, "I don't mean a *live* one!" I said nothing, as my husband was standing right there, and again, I didn't want to disturb him.

A few days later I called Joanne and asked her to describe exactly what she'd seen. Again, I didn't tell her anything or give her any hints or cues - just asked what she'd seen. She replied that she'd been sitting in the living room rocker watching the game, and out of the corner of her right eye, she saw a black shape scoot across the kitchen floor toward the kitchen windows (opposite direction from when I'd seen it). The first thing she thought of was "Cat" - for the exact same reasons I had identified the shape with a cat, its outline and movements. At that point I told her everything, and she didn't seem all that surprised. My husband eventually found out as well, and he's even told me he's seen this phantom "cat" himself. We even joke that we've got the perfect pet - no vet bills and no litter box to clean!

The presence of this phantom feline may also explain strange noises I occasionally hear, as of something falling to the floor in the kitchen, when investigation reveals nothing out of place.

I realize this isn't a scary tale, but I submit it because an outside witness saw exactly the same thing I had seen, corroborating my experience to a perfect T. It was only when Joanne told me she had experienced it as well, that I knew I had seen no ocular floater or anything else other than something beyond the norm. I subsequently plucked up the courage to ask my landlady if any cats had died in that apartment. She looked at me funny and said no. Thing is, there are tons of cats in this neighborhood, and some of them like to hang out around our house, come up on the porch, even try to get past us into the back door when we come home. I have to wonder if there wasn't some kitty that lived there long ago and has come back, and the others know he/she is there and want to play. A more disturbing possibility is one my mother raised - that it might not be a cat spirit at all, but something else that's taking that form for whatever reason. She has also reported getting a creepy (but not evil) feeling in the basement. Even if this spirit is benevolent, I'd much rather it be a cat ghost!

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