Supernatural Fiction posted October 16, 2016

This work has reached the exceptional level
A short ghost story.

Enter the dead little children

by Rasmine

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I looked up at the full moon and thought I heard cackling in the distance. I swallowed and despite the eerie childlike giggle, continued forward. The night was cool on my skin, and the lightning bugs added spooky magic to the woods. I didn't give much of a thought to all the stories about the woods being haunted before I ventured into them at night. Now, I desperately tried not to think of them at all! It was harder to do on this night--it was Halloween.

My girlfriend thought I was crazy and declined to come with me. That was okay, though, I kind of wanted some alone time. I was determined to walk through the thickened brush to the alleged graveyard. I have always wanted to do this, and I finally made up my mind. I chose this night because the moon was full and lit the outside like a dull sun hidden by thin clouds on a rainy day. Also, I have to be at class or work when it's light out so this is the only time.

Stacy told me to call her right away if there was any trouble. I think I would call the police before I called her, though. They would help more than she could, but I didn't want her to know that I would pick them over her.

This graveyard was rumored to be a witch's burial ground. As I walked on with a tantalizing excitement, I suddenly did wish Stacy had come with me. At least, it wouldn't be so lonely and kind of creepy. I didn't believe in ghosts or ghouls, but I still did feel trepidation at the thought of what could happen if I was wrong.

I didn't do this just because it was Halloween. I did this because I wanted to see the history of an old ancient graveyard or so I told myself. I think my girlfriend thought I was doing this because it was Halloween, well maybe she was right....

It's hard when you are a resident of a medical school--I mean I still have a class two times a week that lasts most of the day because of the lab that is part of the course. All the students meet the following day to study and talk. And the rest of the time I am at the hospital. This night I had off, Stacy had wanted to go to a dance, but I had wanted some time to myself so I am visiting this graveyard.

Somewhere in the distance a wolf howled. How beautiful, but then another one and yet another howled. One was a short distance from me. Okay, maybe I'll be eaten by a wolf on Halloween--that would make for an interesting story on the front page of the school newspaper--'Medical Student Eaten by Wolves in Haunted Woods.' With tongue in cheek, I laugh and plod on.

There were footsteps and I jumped. Wasn't this place supposed to be deserted?


I felt foolish asking this out loud. I mean this was clearly my imagination. I continued my trek. This path should lead right to the bone yard. I held my night vision camera to my chest. I wanted to take photos of the forgotten graveyard and then show Stacy what she missed.

I looked above--the night was clear. I stopped suddenly and swallowed. What was that ahead? It looked to be a child, but that was preposterous! A child couldn't be out here--well it was Halloween, but still.... There were no houses here, no candy--why would a kid be out here away from the town and candy?

"Hello, little child, what are you doing out here?"

I watched the tiny child form run off, and I thought I heard some more laughter. Well, maybe they saw me climb through the hole in the fence and wanted to play a prank on me. I nervously grinned and walked by the place where I thought I saw the kid. No one was there, not even the leaves were disturbed. It sent icy shivers down my spine. I shook my head trying to be rational with myself.

Thing is, they shouldn't be out here alone. If Stacy was here, she would gather them together and take them to their homes. I glanced ahead and squinted.

There looked to be a clearing up ahead. I squinted my eyes trying to see what was in there but with the darkness it was impossible. I walked faster, leaves crunching under my feet. I thought I saw a tombstone or something sticking out of the ground. Too bad no one else had wanted to come with me, the company would have been good, not that I'm afraid.

I walked out into the clearing. Broken gravestones poked out of the ground. I shone my flashlight on some of them. I heard voices--children's voices. I shone the flashlight all around but there was no one. I frowned. I could have sworn that I heard them.

I shook my head and placed the flashlight on the ground. Now to photograph the graves. I took one photo and then another. This was supposed to be a witch's graveyard, but the dates--the people would have been children! I walked around and inspected grave after grave, finally getting to the last. There were thirty-seven graves and all of them were children! What was going on here? And why were they here?

I sat in the in the middle of the yard on my leather jacket. It was chilly but I sure didn't want my pants getting wet. I looked up at the moon and decided that I probably better get home to sleep. There were labs tomorrow. When I started to walk away I heard a voice that made me stop and swallow hard.

"Please don't go."

The child's disembodied voice was right next to me, although, when I looked no one was there. I suddenly needed to get out of this place as quickly as I could. I held the flashlight in front of me and started to jog slightly. I didn't look behind me when I heard tiny feet running towards me and felt tiny fingers grasp at my legs. I clutched the flashlight tightly. I couldn't wait to be in bed with Stacy--nice, quiet, warm, safe girlfriend to hold me if I get scared.
That night I slept like a log, but woke up with a question that I knew would nag me until I know the truth. I blew off labs and went to the library. That was rare for me to do--being a doctor was a dream since childhood.

I researched the ancient graveyard and couldn't find anything about why there would be children buried there. It was supposed to be a witch's graveyard; they had been murdered by the towns people in the 17th century about the time of Salem Witch Trails. The women had been hung until dead, and there was one male who was drowned. Still, that didn't answer why the graves were all children's.

My specialty was pediatrics. I loved children and wanted them to have the healthiest childhood that they can have. I had been a sickly child--cancer had robbed me of my young teenage years. So to see that these were all graves of young children froze my blood and pulled at my heart. I had to see if I could help in any way.

I decided to go back to the graveyard and do more investigation on my own in the daylight. As I drove my car through the town, I stopped in front of the town historical society. I decided to go inside to see what they knew about the true inhabitants of the graveyard. Yes, they may know more than the library. I pulled into the driveway.

I walked slowly to the door feeling as if I was in a dream. Somehow, I just knew the answers were in this building. I drove along this street every single day and never noticed this building. Maybe it wasn't really here. I laughed but I still couldn't shake off the feeling that I was led here. The building looked like a very old colonial. I opened the door to go inside.

After talking to five people, I had learned nothing new. I closed my eyes and admitted defeat. I probably would never know why there were little children buried at that location. I turned to leave.

"Wait mister."

A young woman with the brightest green eyes took my arm. I turned around and let her lead me to a table with chairs. "You wanted to know why the graves were all children's?"

I simply nodded as we sank into chairs.

"Well," she looked around and then back at me, "the coven was really devil worshippers, not witches. Witches aren't like that--they don't hurt anyone or it may come back to them thrice." She looked around nervously again like she was giving away some deep, dark secrets.

It was at that moment I looked down at her pendant. She wore a pentagram. She was a modern-day witch. I quickly glanced up. I wanted to ask her if she was a pagan witch but she interrupted my wondering.

"Yes, I am a witch. That is why I must tell you about the children's graveyard. Some of the devil cults sacrifice young children hoping to gather their energy together to raise Satan." She rolled her eyes. "I know it sounds silly, but these people really believed in this sort of stuff. Sadly, a lot of the town's children went missing at that time."

I leaned forward and she put her hand on mine. Her intense green eyes intoxicated me and her face seemed to fill my eyesight. Then I wasn't in the historic society anymore. I was in a courtroom. When I looked around at the people's clothes, I realized it was centuries ago.

"You will all hang from the neck for what transpired here. We will bury the children and never speak of this again. May the lord have pity on your souls." A hammer sounded. I watched the judge with a white powered wig slam it over and over. Then the scene switched.

I was in the clearing during the day. There weren't any graves yet, but there were men with shovels. One of them was digging furiously.

"Dig deeper than that. We want these young ones to be given a proper burial." The man turned and faced a few couples that held hands and wept. "We can never talk of what happened to your children. I'm sorry, but we do not want the devils and demons that haunt this land to ever venture off of it into our town."

Then I was back in the historical society again sitting across from this green-eyed beauty. "That is what happened. The land is considered sacred and cursed. That is why no one tends to it. I don't believe in devils or demons, though. Do you want to go back?"

I nodded and she smiled. "Okay, I am a volunteer. We are supposed to forget about this and never mention it again. I guess old superstitions are hard to overcome. I always wanted to go there but was afraid to alone. Meet me outside in ten minutes."
I drove there and we both climbed through a hole in the fence--same way I got in last night. We walked along the path in silence. It was odd, there were no birds, no crickets, no wind, nothing. The atmosphere was drenched with eeriness.

"It's so quiet."

"Yes." She shuddered and glanced at me. "Maybe it is haunted after all."

"I thought you said you don't believe in that kind of thing."

"No, I said I don't believe in devils or demons. I do believe in ghosts and hauntings." She looked at me and smiled. "But don't worry ghosts won't hurt you, only living people."

I mouthed something I really started to wonder. She was a magical person; I mean I had to admit that now that I had been transported to another time. "Who are you?"

"My name is Marcia Glover. You probably heard of my ancestor 'Goody' Glover--she was hung in 1688 for witchcraft."

"You are a witch?"

"Yes. I am a kitchen witch. I use it while doing daily chores--cooking, cleaning, driving...." She sadly shook her head. "But Goody wasn't a witch; they killed her anyway, though."

"In the historical society, I felt I went somewhere when you touched my hand." She didn't answer, just kept walking with a little smile on her face. I dropped the subject and we ventured forth finally coming into the clearing. I stopped but she kept on walking to the middle of the tiny cemetery. I hurried to catch up to her. I didn't want to be alone.

She lifted her hands. "Child spirits I call upon you to show yourselves. We want to talk with you." She said this two more times, and then a loud whooshing was heard. The wind started blowing and was suddenly at hurricane speeds.

"Marcia!" I screamed holding onto a nearby tree to keep from blowing away. She stood tall and proud with her hands still held out up to the heavens. The wind was really blowing but she remained untouched--not even her hair. Then it slowed down until it stopped. I looked around with my mouth agape.

Encircling the graveyard were children all dressed in 17th century outfits. They were ages two to about twelve. I looked at Marcia who was looking all around at them all of them, smiling with bright tears brimming.

"I know you died violently. I want to lead you into the land of your next life where great love awaits you. Your parents will be there to love and care for you. You must see a light--look around you. Now walk into that light."

I couldn't help it, but I started to weep. These were little children that were murdered by people that thought they could bring their god to life. It seemed so ridiculous and these little people paid with their tiny lives. I closed my eyes and wiped away tears. Stacy had wanted babies...children were meant to be loved not butchered, neglected, or abused in any way.

The children all turned left and then started to walk in single file. One boy stopped and looked back. Although he was transparent, I could see his worried look. My heart leapt.

Marcia just nodded at him. "It is okay. It is your next life. There is nothing to be afraid of--you can go." She stood as an idol of strength. She also was my strength at that moment.

The boy turned and walked. They walked on and on, and suddenly there was a bright flash, as brilliant as flashing lights at a concert. When the light ceased, there was no child left. Marcia had just performed a kind of exorcism and helped the haunted to move onto the next life.

When we walked out of the woods and back through the hole in the fence, I could hear all kinds of birds and crickets. I saw a bird of prey soaring on the wind, a tiny bunny racing across our path, and dragonflies soaring on the wind. The place was finally cleansed.
That night as I made love to Stacy, I kept thinking of the children. Stacey had wanted a baby and I felt it was time to give her one.

Your best Halloween or Scary Story!
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TY Mr. Jones for your perfect photo!
I just turned on 'Creepy Doll Music' on YouTube and inspiration caught me by the hand!
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