The following account is rather interesting. The home they lived in was already occupied it seems…… Submitted to Weird Darkness and My Haunted Life Too, Chris Francis gives us his chilling account….
I was 18 years old and like every young man trying to make it in the world, had moved from my mother’s house outside Orillia Ontario to an apartment in Toronto. I was determined to show I could make it on my own after high school so I got two jobs and worked myself to the bone. Needless to say, I didn’t quite have what it took yet to make it on my own. A year later I sucked up my pride and moved home with my tail between my legs. My mother and sister and newborn baby brother had moved to a new place now just off the main street in downtown Orillia. It was a century home, two-story red brick house with high sloped rooftops and a sunroom. This house was renovated inside but it still kept its original facade.The house was very large and originally had two stairwells leading upstairs. The house was split into a duplex with tenants living in the back half of the house, so the back stairwell went down a few steps to a15-foot long corridor then was promptly walled off. The rear tenants only had a main floor one bedroom apartment with only rear yard access. Our half was a 3 bedroom, one bathroom all situated on the second floor. The main floor had the living room, kitchen, and sunroom. From the living room was the basement door which was adjacent to the sun room and had the main staircase above it. All the rooms were spoken for between my mother Karen, little sister Diane, and 1 year old baby brother Jacob, so I had but one place to go, the sun room. It wasn’t insulated so it was winter and I had to sleep on the couch in the living room and being I moved back in March I had a few couch-bound nights to go. One thing that was odd the moment I entered the house, my sister, Diane took me aside and said
“I know you’ll believe me. No one else does, but there is something wrong with this house”.
Not one to bat an eye at a little mystery I said: “what’s going on?”
She began to explain how she can’t go in the basement alone because she feels like someone is watching her. So being the brash and brave (6’7″ 340lb big brother), I said with a sigh to try and hide my obvious intrigue
“alright… lets go check it out”.
As we walk down the narrow stairs to the basement, I see that there is part of the foundation much older than the original house, it was made of old field stone and mortar,it even had what was left of a doorway and windows, clear evidence that another much older house sat on this lot previously. There were two overhead pull string lights – one on the stairs and one above the washer and dryer. The odd thing I noticed right away is that there was more than enough light to illuminate the entire basement brightly. But for some reason not past the threshold of the old foundation. it was like a black hole. No light could penetrate it even after I grabbed grabbed a flashlight. A very oppressive feeling seemed to emanate from there. It was at that point I had my fill not to seem frightened I said
“Meh, its just old stones” and we went back upstairs.
My sister was right it felt like the entire time we had our backs to that foundation it felt like someone was right behind us all the way up to the door. Unfortunately, this was only a part of bigger issues to come.
The first night as I lay asleep on the couch I half opened my eyes to see the basement door slowly open and the stairway light come on. A moment later, I heard both of our family rottweilers Roxy and Goliath, who usually slept upstairs but had bunked with me on the couch that night, begin to growl and immediately the light went out and the door shut quite quickly that’s how snapped too, originally I discounted it as a dream but it nagged at me for a while because when I knew I was awake both dogs were staring towards the basement door intently ears flat to the sides of their head, a clear sign they weren’t happy. This seemed to happen on an almost nightly basis for the next few weeks. the door opens, the light comes on, dogs growl, the door slams shut.
Then the night came and something changed. The door opened, the light came on then I heard someone climb the stairs, they were old and they creaked like nobody’s business it was obvious someone was going up – not down, so it couldn’t have been my Mom or Diane. Then Jacob screamed, he’s a heavy sleeper and not one to cry for no reason. He was a very well behaved baby, but he screamed and it was a terrified shriek. Then all of the sudden, I could hear something bounding down the stairs then BAM the basement door slammed so hard it shook the floor. My mom and sister come running down the hall to see what was wrong. I ran upstairs as well to find a terrified Jacob and my mother trying to sooth him. That was the last episode for over a month.
Finally, spring temperatures brought a small move in the house. I moved into the sunroom. Which was nice because it had curtains on every window including the ones facing into the living room, so I could have some semblance of privacy. I had my bed, my computer and personal belongings in there with me, it was as much of a bedroom as I was going to get for a while. It was nice because I had taken up a job at the hot deli at the local supermarket and after a closing shift I could come in through the outer sun room door and not disturb the rest of the house. The sunroom was a much later addition to the house. It was built on its own footings and only attached to the red brick. The original outer wall, windows and door were still in place. Some how this afforded me some sanctuary from the events happening in the house when they began picking up again. I had a view from the outside so to speak. The sunroom door was off set from the basement door by about 4 feet. Directly across from the basement door were the windows into the sun room. The curtains were on my side of the window and not the living room which was somehow comforting to know.
Then I had the encounter with the shadow in the window. It was a mild late April night and I was just home from a closing shift, I had logged on to the internet to check emails and chat with friends when out of the corner of my eye, I saw the basement door light come on. It was 11:00 at night. No one was doing laundry and I heard no one come down the noisy stairs. “here we go” I thought and kept a close eye on the windows in front of the basement door to see if I could see anything come up the stairs. Just as I finished the thought, I saw a shadow rise against the curtain. It stood approximately 6 feet tall. It stood there for a few moments, which felt like minutes. It seemed to be trying to peer through the glass at me, then suddenly it turned and made its way into the living room. I was stunned. I had no idea what to do. Do I go out there and confront what ever it was? Then.. the stairs! It was going up the stairs. This time I wasn’t creaking softly. It was trudging up there! It was mad. You could hear it in its footsteps then with a violent sound I heard a door upstairs slam shut. Then I heard it again and again slamming harder and harder. I thought for sure a door would be off its hinges. Then the shadow passed my window.. paused again and slammed the basement door. This time the dogs were in hot pursuit barking and snapping at the basement door. I rushed upstairs to see what happened and there was my mother standing in the door to her room scared to death.
That morning my mother opened up to me about the feelings she got in the house.
“I hate that basement and I cant go in that back stairwell, I just can’t the feeling of dread is too much”.
So for the first time, I went and really walked down that stairwell and along the corridor to the where the landlord had walled it off for the second unit. And she was right. I couldn’t spend 5 minutes in there without becoming legitimately terrified. I did some researching and found that salt could keep spirits from crossing a barrier. So I left the work that night with two big bags of it. I went to the top of the second stairwell and poured a big thick line of salt from wall to wall. I was going to do the same with the basement but with the laundry being down there I thought against it. Boy that was a mistake. That night all we could hear was pounding and stomping from the corridor and the basement door and light were going crazy almost every hour.
All we did was piss it off.
Whatever it was began taking its frustrations out on my sister. She was so terrified that she would have me sleep in her room next to her bed because she felt what ever this thing was didn’t want anything to do with me. It was almost like this entity was throwing temper tantrums whenever I involved myself in its dealings. Eventually, I began calling it on and daring it to do something. Only to get its response dealt someone else besides me. Be it scratching baby Jacob’s arm or pushing my mother out of her bed. So I decided it was time to look further into the house’s past. The newer part ( I say newer but it was still over 100 years old) had nothing really interesting besides the fact ownership changed hands a lot. And for all my digging I couldn’t find any information on the original structure that helped prop up the new house. The only thing I could find was that the back corridor was a servants staircase and it lead right down to the basement. The landlord had sealed it off from the rear unit and it wasn’t visible at all, speaking to the neighbours, they were a timid older couple and they thought we were the causes for all the commotion. Their only experiences were they could hear muttering and other loud sounds coming from the basement which they were directly above the old foundation.
Luckily by that summer, the landlord had sold the house, forcing all of us to move as they were turning it into a retirement home and were going to eliminate both units to do so. We eventually settled for a nice cookie cutter townhouse in a complex. I’ve never been so happy to move in my life. I remember the last time I looked at that house was when we pulled out of the driveway and I looked through the sunroom windows, which now was barren with no curtains and seeing a 6-foot tall bald man in a grey coat standing at the basement door staring right at me with a scowl on his face. Who he was or why he was so mad will remain a mystery to us I guess and I’m OK with that.
Submitted by Chris Francis
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