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Brad (1)

Kairit, Kyoto, Japan
September 2003

I am female, Finnish by birth, currently twenty-one and working as a model in Japan. While I have had a number of experiences that might be called "odd", they may not be supernatural. However, I have always believed that there is more to the world than the ordinary part.

The following incident may not seem ghostly, and it is not very scary. But it seemed to be so strange that I cannot forget it.

When I was fourteen years old, my cousin in Minnesota, USA invited me to come visit her for the summer and go to camp together. Since I had not seen her for some time, I was very excited. The camp was at a beautiful forest area beside a lake. It was a lovely place, but also a problem because there were many insect at night, especially mosquitos.

One night there was a party and I got so many mosquito bites on my arms and legs. It was terrible and so itchy! Before going to bed I tried to heal it by putting on some lotion, but it was still hard to sleep. I finally must have fallen asleep, but I woke up again at about one in the morning. My arms and legs were itching again so much. Unfortunately, I had forgotten my lotion in the bathroom, which was downstairs on the lower floor of the cabin.

Sleepily, I stepped outside. It had been drizzling for some time, and seemed unusually cold for a summer night. When I looked up, I became shocked.

There was a man leaning against the rail of the balcony and staring out at the rain. His back was turned toward me, and I could not see his face. Even slightly bent over as he was, he was very tall and his head touched the clothesline. The strange part was that although he was standing right in front of me...he was very hard to see. It was as if whenever I tried to see a detail about him, my eyes would just slide past and overlook it. Almost as if he did not want to be seen.

But what had shocked me at first was that he is a man, and this camp is very strict so there are absolutely no men or boys allowed to set foot on the girl's cabin. I was a little scared about what he might want. Somehow, I managed to ask what he was doing here.
"Thinking," he said.
His voice was very low, and it sounded hollow and distant even though he was close by. I have never heard a voice like it.

I opened my mouth again to ask him to please leave, but instead the question came out. "What is your name?" He turned around. The night was very dark, but the front of him was even darker and his face was in complete black. I could not see a thing.
"Brad," he said.
As he said this he seemed to be leaning toward me. I suddenly had a burst of fear and backed away and quickly said, "Goodnight then." Heart pounding, I rushed down the stair and got the lotion. For some reason I was so afraid. When I came back up the stairs, he was gone. But when I passed by the railing I had another shock.

The clothesline (which we had to keep neat) was in a bit of a disarrange where his head had been. Otherwise it was like no one had never been there. Except that someone had. Because, right under the disarrange spot on the clothesline, there were two footprints next to each other. In the wet wood they were still dry, as if the person who had made them had been standing there since before the rain started, just looking out and thinking.

Before I stepped inside, I looked down at the floor of the balcony for some reason. I had left a trail of footprints leading out of the door, going down the stairs and coming back up again. However, when I looked at the two prints by the railing, there were no steps leading to them, and no steps leading away from them. They were just...there. I did not wait to see the two strange foot marks covered by raindrops, but I ran away inside.

I am still not sure about that night. It was late, and dark, and raining, and perhaps I might have imagined it. But I don't know anyone named Brad, and I'll never forget the shocked feeling, or that strange voice, or the sense of looking at something that simply did not want to be visible to me.

Kairit, Kyoto, Japan
00:00 / 01:04
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