Authors: Peter Buckley
Tags: #horror, #supernatural adventure, #ghosts entities undead, #ghosts and hauntings, #horror about ghost, #supernatural and paranormal, #ghosts stories, #horror and ghosts, #horror action thriller, #supernatural and occult
They had tried for five years to get
permission to do a paranormal investigation at Hallstorn Manor. The
stories of its hauntings were legendary in the Cornish area of the
UK. Headless maids, ghost children, and a vengeful wife had all
been documented throughout its two-hundred-year-old history.
The Southern Paranormal Investigator Society
finally got the go ahead to spend the night in the old mansion. The
five members of the society were excited; as soon as they received
the clearance, they arranged an emergency meeting and decided to
conduct their investigation on December the thirteenth, the date
when the Mansion had held its last party and where, as legend had
it, all the guests disappeared.
Tony Mortan, the lead investigator and
founder of the Southern Paranormal Investigator Society, had been
obsessed with the mansion. He had collected every bit of
information he could find about the building at its hauntings. His
obsession had cost him his marriage, his long-suffering wife
walking out on him and moving in with another man she had met over
the internet. Tony hadn’t even noticed she had gone until he
realized that there were no clean plates to eat from. He had
searched his house calling out his wife’s name when he found the
hand-written letter on the mantel piece. He had walked past it
several times but had never taken much notice of it until then. He
read it and then crumpled it up and threw it in the open fireplace.
He grumbled to himself and reassured himself she had never
understood him and his passion.
He had agreed to allow only a small group of
people join his society. Only those that shared his belief in the
paranormal and who could bring equipment and technical knowledge to
his ghost hunts were allowed.
Michael Hall and John Peterson were the first
two to join; they brought a knowledge of video cameras and computer
setup. On their first ghost hunt together, they had introduced Tony
to the joys of thermal cameras and computer recording camera setups
so that they could capture what was happening in each of the rooms
even if the three were investigating somewhere else in a house.
They had captured several “orbs” as they called them. Some would
argue that the small balls appearing and moving across the camera
were actual dust particles, but they were convinced they had
captured paranormal energy.
Phoebe Richards was the only female in the
group. Tony initially didn’t want a woman in the team. He didn’t
trust them, especially after his wife had left him. Phoebe brought
a knowledge of electronic voice phenomenon, EVP for short. She
captured several voices and sounds that she convinced the others
were responses to her questions.
The final member of the group was a newbie;
Jeremy Sanderson was a religious education teacher and brought a
large knowledge of religious beliefs and theories as well as a book
The group began to meet more and more as the
mansion investigation date approached. Tony had purchased several
pieces of equipment in preparation: new thermal cameras, static
electricity monitors, and temperature gauges. Hotels were booked
for a couple of days prior to and after the investigation. The team
members had all booked their holiday time with their respected jobs
and counted down the days until they left for the mansion.
The two minivans travelled down the long and
winding road that led to the mansion. The team of paranormal
investigators had spent the past two days and nights staying in a
hotel in the local village, using the time to check equipment and
speak with locals about what they had heard about the history of
Tony Mortan, the team leader, had slept very
little. This was his holy grail—the one he had been dreaming of
since he first started investigating paranormal activity.
They drove down the leafless tree-lined road
with no other vehicles around, and all five of the team took the
opportunity to enjoy their picturesque surroundings. Statues
occasionally appeared amongst the old trees; their strange
disfigured faces caused the team members to look at each other with
They pulled up outside the large wooden front
door, and a man dressed in blue dirty overalls and mudded boots
waited in front. Tony exited the van and approached the man. He
extended his hand but was greeted with a gruff, ‘Morning’ as the
other man placed his hands into the pockets of his dirty overalls.
Tony lowered his hand, thinking how rude the man was not to
reciprocate the handshake.
‘Do you want to tell the others to join us?’
the man said, nodding towards the two minivans and their occupants.
‘I don’t want to spend too much time here. I got other things to
Tony looked at the man with raised eyebrows
and then looked back at the others and waved them to join him.
The man waited until the whole team was
gathered by the door and then unlocked it. He pushed the large door
open, the hallway beyond seemed to be covered in dust. The man in
overalls stepped in, his footsteps echoing around the
high-ceilinged hallway. The team followed him in. Phoebe, the last
person, closed the door behind her, shutting out the only light
‘Don’t move,’ the man said.
They heard his footsteps walk away, and then
the small chandeliers above them burst into life. He stood at the
far end of the hallway and beckoned them towards him. As they
approached him, they looked up at the strange macabre paintings
that adorned the walls. Two of the larger paintings depicted
hangings and sacrifices.
‘Come on, I don’t want to spend more time
than I have to here,’ the man said, getting inpatient with the
group of fascinated paranormal investigators.
He began walking through the mansion, room by
room, giving a brief history of its décor and use. Several times he
paused and took a deep breath before entering. One of these pauses
was before he pushed a pair of great oak doors into a large dining
room. A long, dark, wood table stood in its center, and in the
middle of it a strange art sculpture stood. It was made from
hundreds of deer antlers, and it spiraled and twisted until it
reached the ceiling. Phoebe stared at it wide eyed; there was
something about it that grabbed her attention. Both Michael and
John called to her as they moved to the large fireplace at the far
end of the room, but she seemed to be in a trance. It was only when
Jeremy tapped her on the shoulder that she snapped back into the
‘This room has a long dark history of death,’
the man began. ‘Two children of the first owner were found poisoned
sitting at this very table.’ He pointed at two chairs, one at
either end of the table.
‘Most recently, the current owner’s grandson
was found dead lying in this fireplace.’ Again, he pointed a dirty
finger at the place where the body was found.
‘What was the cause of death?’ Tony
The man in overalls looked at him and
shrugged his shoulders. ‘No one knows. “Natural causes,” is what
was entered on the death certificate.’
As they left, Phoebe took one last look at
the sculpture. They moved through to a small kitchen, and as soon
as the door was opened, they could all feel the drop in
‘Is there a door open or a window?’ John
The man turned, looked at him, and shook his
head. ‘It’s always cold in here. Some say it’s the restless
spirits; others say it’s just the position of the room in relation
to the building.’
‘Restless spirits?’ John asked.
‘There are stories that a large number of
people were murdered in here,’ the man said before quickly moving
to the next door and into the adjoining room.
They were shown several other rooms that all
had strange macabre pictures on the walls before they reached the
large, marble, curved staircase.
‘Well, that’s all I got time to show you,’
the man said, gently tapping two fingers on the large banister.
Tony looked up the stairs and then back at
the man. He pointed up the stairs and was about to ask about being
shown the next level, but the man cut him short.
‘I don’t go up there; no one goes up stairs,’
‘But we need to know what rooms are the best
to set up our equipment in,’ Michael said.
The man shook his head. ‘You can set up in
any of those room, it makes no difference; something bad happened
in each of them.’
‘What like?’ Tony asked eagerly.
The old man looked at each of the
investigators and again shook his head.
‘You people are crazy. If you really want to
know what happened upstairs, there is a book on the small table
over there,’ he said, pointing at the small round table next to a
black wooden coat stand and a large door.
A cold breeze flowed down the stairs and
engulfed the group standing at its bottom. They all shivered and
looked back up the stairs. The old man took a step backwards
towards the large door.
‘Right, that’s all I have time to show you. I
have a very busy day, and there is meant to be a dumping of snow
later today,’ he said.
He walked the group back to the front door
and stood outside and looked up at the grey, cloudy sky. ‘There’s
snow on its way, and I think it’s going to be here sooner than the
bloody weather man said.’
The others looked up at the clouds and then
at each other. The temperature had dropped, yet it still felt
warmer than the icy chill they got from the breeze that came down
‘You better hurry up and get your stuff out
of your vans; I don’t want to be here any longer than I have to.’
The old man said, still looking up at the clouds.
The team of investigators looked at each
other and fell into their well-rehearsed routine of gathering
equipment from the van and moving it inside. They carried the
equipment into the dining room and placed it against the wall.
Phoebe stayed and began setting up the laptop and arranging the
cameras, placing them on the large table. Normal cameras,
night-vision cameras, and thermal cameras were each labeled with
the name of a member of the group. She then began unpacking the
stands and the multiple lengths of cable that were going to be run
around the house to connect all the fixed cameras and scientific
data recorders to the laptop and recorders.
The others returned several times with other
bags and crates full of cables and equipment until she was finally
joined by Michael and John, who began busily setting up screens and
recorders, connecting cables, and talking in a language that even
Phoebe didn’t understand: numbers and words that referred to
lengths and power outputs of cables and resolutions of cameras and
Tony and Jeremy made sure that the vans were
empty and locked before turning to the old man, who impatiently
looked at his watch.
‘Ok, that looks like everything,’ Tony
‘You sure you want locking in?’ The old man
asked, confusion etched on his face.
‘Yes please, it’s just to make sure there is
no outside interference. You can return in the morning and unlock
the doors,’ Tony replied.