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Overview: Ghost stories

Boom! Boom! Boom!

“What on earth was that?” I was awakened by a noise and was lying in my bed not daring to breathe.

There! There it was again. It sounded like a loud, dull knocking on the front door.

Boom! Boom! Boom!

It was the 31st of October in the year 2003 and I was just 10 years old at the time. My parents had gone to the theatre on that evening. “You are so big now”, they said to me, “we don’t need a babysitter anymore.” That is why I was alone at home. “All alone”, I realised “and fully defenceless if anyone tried to get into the flat.”

Boom! Boom! Boom!

“Maybe” I thought to myself somewhat relieved, “it is my parents who are knocking at the door?” I looked at the clock. It was only 21.34 and was actually far too early because mum had said that the theatre would be finished at 23.00. And apart from that, obviously my parents had a front door key. “But what if they have lost the key?” went through my head, “and are standing in front of the door and can’t get in.” My stomach turned over. “What should I do now?” I felt totally helpless. Dad had made me promise not to open the door so late in the evening when I am home alone. You could never know who wanted to get in at that time. Maybe it was a drunken tramp. “Or even”, my heart almost stood still for a few seconds with the thought, “an evil vampire who was creeping through the darkness to stave his hunger with fresh blood.”

I kept as quiet as possible so that the monster would not notice me and I listened to the darkness of the night as if I were under a spell.

But the thought that my parents might be standing in front of a locked door was so agonising that I could stay in bed any longer.

“Good!” I finally thought to myself. “Vampire or not – I don’t have any other choice but to get up and go and see who keeps knocking at the door.” The worry about mum and dad was worse than the fear of the uninvited visitor. I crept along on my tiptoes and crawled along the floor to the window which is right next to the door. I slowly pushed the curtain to one side and cautiously looked through the window and... !!! Nothing was to be seen apart from the pitch darkness of the night.

“Phew!” my knees were now shaking with fear. “No reason for panic. There is no one outside and no one wants to do me any harm.” I calmed myself down. “No vampire, no intruder but no parents either” which I didn’t like. I would be so relieved if my mum and dad were at home now. “Never mind” I thought to myself and went into the kitchen to drink a glass of milk. That always helps me to sleep better. “Everything is OK. The theatre will be finished at 23.00 and then they will come home.” Whoever it had been who had knocked on the door was not there anymore. I then came to the conclusion that it had probably been our neighbour, Mr Dombrowski, or another of my parent’s friends. Whoever it had been, I was ready to go back to bed and not let anyone into the house until my parents came back two hours later.

I went back upstairs and lay in my bed. I was happy to hear that everything was peacefully quiet and then slowly fell asleep. I slept like a bear until suddenly...

Boom! Boom! Boom!

...and I was dragged from my sleep with more banging on the door.

“Oh no!” I thought to myself as I felt how the sweat started to build up and started to run down my back “It still isn’t over. Whoever or whatever wants to try and get into the house has come back again”. I hid under the covers shaking and listening carefully “maybe”, I thought, “I just dreamed the last knocking”. The thought that it might have just been a nightmare let me clam down a bit, but...

Boom! Boom! Boom!

... At that moment the nastiest noise of all broke the silence once again. The feeling of assurance was gone again and a paralysing feeling almost like fainting started to grow in my chest.

Boom! Boom! Boom!

“Ok! You dreadful thief! You stupid monster!” I suddenly released that I couldn’t just lie here waiting to find out what you happen. Spurred on by my despair, I jumped up and ran downstairs. “You won’t get me that easily, you stupid vampire!” I ran to the window, ripped the curtain open and “there!!” I almost had a heart attack with fright as two dark shadows were slipping past the window to disappear into the darkness again.

I needed a few minutes before I caught my breath again and could think clearly. I ran as quickly as I could to the telephone and dialled my mum’s number. “Damn it!” I started to cry with despair. Obviously mum had switched her telephone off during the show.

“Keep quiet” I told myself again. No problem. In an emergency, mum had always said that I could phone our neighbour, Mr Dombrowski. I searched for the telephone book with shaking hands and dialled the number. It worked and a friendly voice finally answered the phone: “Dombrowski.” “Mr Mr Dombrowski. This is Tim Müller from next door. Please” my voice kept breaking up with nervousness, “there are intruders here. Please come over quickly!” “Stay calm Tim, I’ll coming over now!”

Boom! Boom! Boom!

Someone knocked at the door again and the fear went through every bone in my body. “Mr Dombrowski will be here soon, everything will be OK, he’ll be here soon!” I told myself again and again so that I wouldn’t go crazy with fear.

Boom! Boom! Boom!

“Tim! It’s me. Your neighbour, Mr Dombrowski. There is nothing to be scared of. Open up.”

My legs were shaking like mad. They were so shaky that I almost fell as I went to the window to see if it really was him. “Thank God!” I almost prayed to heaven as I saw him standing there. “My good old neighbour was standing outside but ...” I had to swallow hard “there were two dark creatures standing in front of him!”

“Open up Tim!” called Mr Dombrowski and began to laugh out loud. “You scaredy cat. It is the 31st of October today. It is Halloween!”

I opened up the door and saw that the two dark creatures standing next to Mr Dombrowski were children who were dressed up and called out “trick or treat” with merry voices.

The end

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