A Ghostly Visit with A.K. Morgen (Fade Blog Tour)
In honor of the recent release of her book Fade (The Ragnarok Prophecies: Book One), the delightful A.K. Morgen has given me a story to share of a brush with the unexplained from her own life (a brief author bio follows).
Strange Happenings and Ghostly Rumors
When I was a teenager, my mother, sister, and I moved into an apartment complex in a small town in the heart of Arkansas. The complex was situated a few miles from the legendary White River Monster in one direction, and a creepy old cemetery, called Red-Eye by the locals, in the other. Bones in the cemetery constantly washed to the surface, the sad victims of rain eroding the sides of the hill they'd been buried on long ago.
The apartment complex was only a few years old, and our neighbors loved to tell us that it'd been built over an old burial ground. Naturally, they said the ghosts of those poor souls were not amused by the violation, and things were forever going bump in the night. Not one of the seven buildings on the property was left untouched by the disturbed ghosts.
"Just wait," our neighbors loved to tell us, "you'll see."
Every time I heard the tale or that warning, I brushed it off as rumor and imagination. After all, small towns love a good, scandalous mystery, and there are about a few thousand similar tales of buildings going in atop old burial grounds floating around out there. Not to mention, with a cemetery with such dreadful problems so near, an old burial ground rumor wasn't a big imaginative leap. And everyone's heard that construction has a tendency to stir up ghosts.
After a few weeks in our cozy new digs though, we quickly realized our neighbors might not have been as far off the mark as we thought. Strange things happened all over the place. Locked doors would open and close for no reason. Electronics would turn on and off. Cabinets opened and closed. The water came on for no reason at all hours. We'd hear whispers floating through the apartment, and see shadowy figures out of the corners of our eyes.
By the time our mom told us she chased someone into the laundry room, only to find no one inside and no possible way they could have gotten out unless they'd managed to shrink themselves to Alice size and scurry out the dryer vent, my sister and I were more than a little nervous about the situation. Casper was a fun movie, but let's face it, not many teenage girls want to live with Casper!
My mom's advice was simple, and not particularly helpful. "Don't mess with ghosts and they won't mess with you," she told us.
We accepted her unfulfilling wisdom grudgingly.
Soon enough though, we realized our mysterious happenings were harmless. We relaxed. By the end of our first year in the apartment, our fears of ghost possession and bad horror-movie deaths vanished.
When things got a little strange, we brushed it off. My sister even named our ghost. He was Bob. When a door opened, or anything weird happened, we'd say hello to him and go about our business.
Eventually, a young friend began crashing on the couch after being kicked out of his house. We'd become so used to our harmless occurrences, we didn't think to tell him about them. He may never forgive us that oversight.
About a week after he moved in, the cabinets began opening and closing in the middle of the night. And then the water in the bathroom came on. Nothing out of the ordinary . . . unless you didn't know about Bob, that is.
I will never forget walking into the living room the next morning. Our friend was huddled in a ball on the couch, a blanket wrapped around him, a flashlight gripped tightly in his hands, my mom's baseball bat at his side, and his eyes as wide as saucers. Apparently, he'd been in the same position for about four hours, too scared to come out from beneath the blankets or go turn the water off.
In hindsight, we probably shouldn't have laughed.
He slept with the baseball bat for about a week, and adamantly refused to be left alone in the apartment during the rest of the time he lived with us. Everyone teased him, but he didn't care. Friendly Ghost Bob or no, he was freaked.
We moved out of the apartment about a year later, no worse for wear. In the years since, no one has ever confirmed the old burial ground story, leading me to believe my initial guess wasn't far off: the creepy old cemetery where bones don't stay buried for long bred the rumor. But I saw the other faucet of that rumor for myself. If our complex didn't have ghosts, there were some freakishly talented flies making themselves at home!
A.K. Morgen lives in Little Rock, Arkansas with her husband, and three crazy pets. Her debut young adult novel, Fade (The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book One) is available now from Curiosity Quills Press. You can learn more about Ayden and her writing at: http://akmorgen.com
Thanks, Ayden!! I hope you're having an amazing first week with Fade!