A Really Scary Ghost Story
In order for a story to rank as a really scary ghost story it has to have more going for it besides the old fashioned boo factor that so many stories rely on.
In this true account a ghost has a desire so strong it stays with him right up until the very last moment of his life. Afterwards death can't stop him from getting what he wanted so badly but couldn't seem to acquire during his lifetime. The fact that he managed to accomplish it in such a grisly manner after he died makes this the type of really scary ghost story that gets under the covers with you.
You Can’t Take it With You
Back in the '70s a young couple, Fern and Joan, realized their dream and bought a farm. It would be a great place to raise their four sons and they would get away from the hassle of the city.
On the day they moved in most of their neighbours came to greet them. One couple, an older pair in their early seventies, were especially friendly and helpful. Fern found himself asking the older man, Collin, for advice on a great many things to do with farming. Very soon the two families became so close the boys called the older people Grandma and Grandpa Paulin.
Their wish was to produce their own fresh vegetables and meat from the farm itself. A few weeks after arriving the hunt for animals to populate the farm began. Collin volunteered to go along cow shopping.
They stood in front of a row of holsteins, fine enough looking cows, Fern thought, at least they looked fine enough.
"I want three," he announced. "One that will supply the house with milk and all we need there and the other two to bring in calves. They have to be gentle, my wife and kids will be taking care of them while I’m at work."
Collin jabbed him and made a sign with his fingers, two.
"I want a spare, we can't expect everything to work out perfect."
"Young fellows right, Collin. He gets an extra calf he can always sell it," the farmer cut in.
Collin rolled his eyes.
The farmer ignored him focusing all his attention on Fern. "I got two young cows that'll do you just right. I'll give you a good deal 'cause they don't produce enough milk for me. They have plenty to feed their calves, though. You don't want big udders out in the field anyway, cause you nothing but trouble."
Fern nodded, it made sense.
"Then there's this one here. She's a good big cow, she'll give you more milk than you'll know what to do with. She's gentle as a lamb, but she sure hates them new milkers. You won't be using milkers anyhow, so that'll be no never mind for you."
And the deal was struck, Fern was the proud owner of three cows.
Out in the car, Collin shook his head. "I thought you brought me along to help?"
"When? You jumped too quick. You didn't even ask me. We could have got him way down on those two younger ones."
"Ah, what's a couple dollars between neighbours? And they are good cows."
"Yeah, they're good cows. Sure wish I'd known he was selling that older one, though. Would have liked her for myself."
"She hates milkers, Collin." He winked, "She’d cause you no end of grief."
The summer months rolled by quickly. By the time the snow hit the ground the vegetables were harvested, the calves were growing big and strong, and the meat chickens were packed into the freezer. The family celebrated the end of the season by inviting Grandma and Grandpa Paulin to dinner.
"Everything on this table we grew ourselves," Fern declared proudly. There was a roast chicken steaming in the middle and homemade buns in a small covered basket with small bowls of fresh butter beside it. Plates of vegetables and a pitcher of milk were being passed around.
"You eat like kings," Collin commented, smiling.
"We have cottage cheese and fresh cream too. You can't buy taste like that from any store."
"No, you sure can't," Collin said. "Those cows working out for you then?"
"Fantastic. He was right, we have more milk than we know what to do with and Joan has been doing a lot with it."
"I’d really like to have her, you know, that older cow you bought. I could do you an even trade for a beef cow. Put better meat on the table."
"We’re crossing the calves next year. Bobby's got a nice bull he says I can borrow when I need him. And we could never give up May." He smiled at Joan and the boys and they nodded.
"Well, you keep me in mind if you decide otherwise."
The seasons passed quicker than the young couple noticed them. As a few years passed and the boys got old enough they were each assigned chores they could handle and seemed to get done without too much grumbling.
One morning the youngest of the sons ran out to open the door for the chickens. One side of the shed held the broilers and the other side held the laying hens.
It had become a challenge to get all the eggs as the hens had begun to hide them. The boy took great pleasure in outsmarting them and getting most of the eggs. For that reason he was always the first outside. It usually took him a bit of a half hour to finish his chores. He was back in the house in a bare few minutes his face deathly pale.
"The chickens," he stammered. "They’re all dead. All of them." Tears were streaming down his face.
Joan ran from the house, the three older boys behind her. She looked in the shed, the birds were in a pile and indeed all of them were dead.
"It doesn't make sense," Trevor said staring wide eyed at the pile of carcasses.
Joan sighed. "The light must have gone out. Sometimes chickens will pile up that way and suffocate if there's no light."
Trevor shook his head. "But why are they all dead? Shouldn't the top ones be ok?"
Joan couldn't answer that, it did seem a bit odd. "Let's get the other chores done and then we'll have to bury these."
Trevor went back to the house to get the milk bucket to milk May.
Kyle headed to the side of the barn to fill the water buckets. As he bent over the tap, switching buckets, a movement caught his eye.
A green clad pant leg brushed past him. "Grandpa Paulin," he shouted.
Kyle straightened to tell him the terrible news about the chickens.
No one was there. He looked beyond the barn to the yard expecting to see his car. The yard was empty. He could have imagined it he thought, but it had seemed so real.
A shout from the barn brought him around, it was Trevor. Kyle left the buckets and raced to the other side of the barn.
His mother was already there. Her hands covered her mouth as if she was trying to keep a scream in.
Trevor was gently pushing her from the barn. "Let's go to the house. I'll call dad, he'll come home. He has to come home."
Kyle stared at the bucket Trevor had dropped. May was lying in her stall, but she wasn't asleep. She was dead. Just as dead as the chickens.
The day was grim. There was no way it could get any worse. Fern had come home and called Abe to come pick up the dead stock. He didn't usually pick up chickens but said this time he would.
"It'll just makes things easier for the little ones," he said. Damndest thing I ever saw, losing everything that way."
"Thanks Abe, I appreciate the help."
"Dad," Trevor called from the house. "Phone for you, they won't talk to anybody else."
Fern felt himself go cold as he took the phone.
"Fern? This is Simon, I'm Collin's brother, we've never met. I have bad news, I'm afraid. Collin died early this morning. It was a heart attack. He was able to talk to us before he passed. He talked about you and your family. How well you all were doing. You had something going with a cow I understand? Strange thing to talk about at the end like that. But he said you just couldn't seem to understand how badly he wanted that cow."
Fern blinked back tears. "I think we understand, I think we really do understand. Now."
If you want something so very deeply that the last moments of your life focus on it completely, can you transcend the plane of death and reach back into the world of the living to take it?
Can desire turn into malevolence after death so you, as a spirit, forget that your actions can cause those you cared about pain?
Is it simply desire that sometimes drives ghosts to visit and do the things they do?
If you liked this ghost story you can find more going from Really Scary Ghost Story to True Ghost Stories .
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