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The Lost Attic

August 2004

It all started when we decided to renovate our Victorian house.

Our Dad was peeling off the old ceiling when he discovered a loft hatch, which had obviously been deliberately boarded over. We managed to open the hatch and we found a large attic, containing (amongst other items) an old ball gown, a large portrait of a wealthy man and most eerily, a rope hanging from the ceiling.

We decided to decorate it, but leaving the rope as my Dad decided that it was dangerous to remove it. We turned it into a den for us kids and our friends.

Later on in the year, we had our three cousins stay over for the summer, and all five of us slept in the attic. All evening, we made up stories about how the rope got there, but little did we know that we were to find out the truth sooner than we thought.

In the early hours of the morning (as I was told later) one of my cousins woke up and saw a ghostly figure of a young woman walking across the attic, crying. She noticed that the woman was wearing a ball gown. She was a little scared, but dismissed it as a dream and turned over.

The next morning, we decided to show our cousins what we had originally found in the attic, to try to freak them out a bit, by using them as props for a scary story. To my horror, my cousin went pale and told us what she had seen the night before. We were all a bit scared, but didn't really believe her.

However, later in the holiday, when playing in the front garden, an elderly woman greeted us. She asked us if we had heard the history of our house. We shook our heads and thought that she was just a crazy old woman.
She then went on to tell us that in Victorian times, a house was built for a newly-wedded couple. However, soon after they moved in, a tragedy took place. The husband was said to have had an affair with a slave-girl. His young wife was so distressed with this that she locked herself in the attic and hung herself. Her husband found her body and his guilt caused him to sell the house, but first decided to dedicate the room to her. He sealed it up, with a portrait of himself so that she could always be with him, her favourite ball gown so that she could dance forever and all her other possessions, so that he could erase her from his life completely.

My brother, along with two of my cousins, dismissed it as a batty old woman's tale, but my other cousin and I will not go in there alone. We both try to avoid the attic as much as we can, and I refuse to sleep in there.

Make of this story what you will, but I strongly believe the old woman's tale and what my cousin saw.

Strangely enough, I later found out that the night my cousin saw the ghost, was the anniversary of the young bride's tragic suicide.

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