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The Laughing Boy

Rob Denham, Indiana, USA
September 2004

My ex-wife and myself purchased an older home, built in the late 1910s or early 1920s, about a year or so after we married, in the early '90s. The house was very large; four bedrooms, full basement and large living room, kitchen and dining room. "Full of character" was how the realtor had put it. It had a character in it, alright.

The bedrooms comprised almost the whole of the upstairs; the steps led up from the living room just inside the front door. There was a landing halfway up, with a window, then the stairs did a sharp dogleg at the top, with three steps up. The upstairs hallway then led straight down to the bathroom at the far end, with the bedrooms lining the hallway on either side.

On the third night we stayed there, my wife got up to go to the bathroom, which was right outside and left of our bedroom. As she stepped outside into the hall, something to her right caught her eye; a figure was standing in the dark at the top of the landing. It was small, a child. She couldn't tell how it was dressed, but it smiled at her and laughed, turning around and walking down the stairs, disappearing around the dogleg to the lower steps to the bottom floor. She walked, cautiously, to the top of the stairs, and peered down. No one was there, of course. She swears that, as slow as he was moving, he should still have been on the stairs when she looked down.

When she woke me and told me about it, I chalked it up to her frequent incidents of sleepwalking, thinking she'd probably dreamed it. I never, myself, saw the ghost, but we did have a cat that would sit at the bottom of the steps (or the top), and stare at something there we couldn't see.

Every once in a while we would glimpse something, or have things disappear in one place and show up somewhere else, but other than that, the little guy hardly ever bothered us. Since she saw him on the steps, and the cat would sit and stare at the steps for hours, we speculated that maybe he'd fallen down the steps and been killed there.

Not scary, but weird anyway.

Rob Denham, Indiana, USA
00:00 / 01:04
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