I own a duplex, live in part and rent out an apartment. New tenant moved in the first of the month - female, 24, good job, South American emigrant but fluent English, petite brown-eyed blond, cute as a bug. All is good.
A week later she calls me at work and says, “I saw the man last night” I say “Huh?” She says, “He was in the bedroom.” I say, “Ah., that’s nice.” She says, “He had no legs.” I say “OOO Kay.”
According to her, she woke up in the middle of the night and saw the partial figure of a man outlined against the skylight. Too scared to turn on a light, she stayed awake till morning.
Well, I know it’s an old house (1880’s) and old houses make noises. And, I know she isn’t used to living on her own. I remember being 21 and those first few scared, sleepless nights I spent in my first apartment, so I try to soothe her. I assure her that neither past tenants or I have had any problems and I offer to lend her some nightlights and extra lamps. End of story, or so I think.
But since then she has called every few days with a new problem or incident. “Has anyone every died in the house?” I’m sure they have; a hundred years ago people didn’t go to the hospital to die. “Was the last tenant a devil worshipper?” Hardly. Can she have a priest bless the place? Sure, whatever makes her feel better.
Then she calls and announces, “I found the cross!” Never at a loss, I say “Huh?” She says “A pirate cross, you know, like with a skull and bones on it. It was under the stairs.” I ask, “You mean like a little necklace?” “No, its big and heavy and black.”
Now my BS meter is going off big time. The apartment is beautifully renovated. The last tenant left the place spic and span; I had all the carpets cleaned. There was NO big, black, cross under the stairs. I ask if I can I come up and see it that night. No, because she couldn’t stand to have it near her, so her boyfriend took it away.
I was willing to humor her for a bit but this is getting absurd. I’m not a total skeptic; like Hamlet, I’m willing to believe that “there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” But I know this house isn’t haunted. I’ve lived here for ten years and I’ve always felt safe and secure. I have an active imagination and I’m often too sensitive for my own good, so I know that if there were something wrong in this house I would have sensed it long ago. Besides, this is a really neat house. If houses have personalities, this is a sweet, happy, good-hearted house. Is there an evil spirit in it? Nope, not a chance.
I think today was the last straw. She says the “ghost” came back last night and tried to smother her in her sleep. I can’t stand anymore of this. I’ve left her a message to come see me when she gets home. I’m going to offer to let her out of the lease if she can move as soon as possible. Hell, I’ll even give her the full deposit back just to end everything on a good note. I’ve been really lucky to have great tenants over the years, so I guess I was about due for a nutcase. BOO on me!