** Names have been changed for privacy purposes.
Back 2001, we bought a home on the busiest street in a small village in Ontario, Canada. My husband and I were elated! This was the house of our dreams, there was enough room for us all to live in comfort, have guests visit, and the yard was breathtaking.
Sure … the house was on the main street where traffic constantly flowed, but the moment you stepped into our backyard, walked past the rear parking pad and down the hill, you were in a forest surrounded by nature. You were filtered from traffic and all sounds made by man or machine.
A small creek ran through our backyard, which provided a soothing sound. A rope swing that my children loved swinging on, so many trees and a natural hill that many of us tobogganed down in the winter months. To this day, I can still hear my poor husband cursing that hill when he had to mow it in the spring and summer.
That house was perfect! The downstairs had a full, one bedroom apartment. We gave that to our sixteen year old son, to help teach him independence and responsibility. The agreement was clear; he was to consider it his bedroom with additional benefits, and I admit, I was jealous that his kitchen was much bigger than mine. He needed to maintain it, have permission before having anyone come over, sleepovers needed to be preapproved and, he still had all his meals with the family.
The main floor was where our youngest and our bedroom were, and then there was the attic. It was more of a three-room loft. Initially, we thought it was a large two-room loft, but then we found the small hidden room. You couldn’t stand up in that small room, but it was a perfect little space for storage.
Our son’s friend needed a place to stay, so she lived up there. She had the same rules as our son, and she too ate her meals with the family. It truly was our perfect home, or so we thought.
The first night we slept in our home, I woke to the smell of perfume; I got up and walked throughout the house (I know! What a fool I was. I was that typical girl in the horror movies … you know the one, she is in heels and runs while tripping constantly into the forest towards the killer), but still, that is what I did. I checked every room and then headed downstairs. I thought. My worse fear was about to come true, my boy is sneaking a girl into the house in the wee hours of the morning, and on the first night!
When I quietly inspected my son’s apartment, sure enough, he was asleep on his couch in the living room with his TV still on. I turned his TV off and headed back upstairs. I continued to inspect the rest of the house. It was almost as if the smell was on me and not floating throughout the house.
I had never worn that perfume before, so I knew that couldn’t be the case. I carefully slipped back into bed, and to be honest, I leaned in and sniffed my husband. It is not that I didn’t trust him, but there had to be some explanation for that smell. I looked at the clock and knew I had to get back to sleep, it was well past four and I needed to get up at six. Every night for the following two weeks, I woke to the smell of that perfume. It was driving me crazy! My husband would not believe me, and no one else ever woke or smelled that perfume.
I ended up going to all the different stores and pharmacies in our Village (and a few of the surrounding cities), and I would investigate the different perfume scents by testing almost a dozen each day. I created a chart that had four columns entitled, name of perfume, not a match, close match and, exact match. I would write the name of the perfume down and check the corresponding column. After weeks of smelling every kind of perfume I could find, I finally found a match, it was White Shoulders, and to this day … if I am in public and someone is wearing that perfume – I automatically get chills.
As time progressed, more and more unexplainable things began to happen. Doors would slam shut when there was no wind or anyone near them, there were a couple of times when I was home alone when suddenly, I felt like someone was watching me, there were times when we were all in the main living room watching TV and we heard someone walking around upstairs in the loft. My husband would say that it was squirrels or raccoons on the roof. One night, it went from the sound of someone walking to someone stomping their feet.
My husband grabbed a bat and quietly headed upstairs. There was nobody there and that was when my husband finally began to consider my theory that our home may be haunted. He told me that in confidence but warned me that he would not admit it in front of others and that I shouldn’t talk like that in front of the kids.
Now we knew that the previous owner had died; we bought the house out of proxy, which means that until the house was sold, the family lawyer couldn’t complete the will. Everything had to be sold before they equally divvied the funds to his children. We also knew that he died in the hospital and not in our home. So we had no idea who or what was causing the noises and other oddities.
That winter, we began renovating our home. My husband took down a wall; inside was an old newspaper showing a picture of our home with six OPP cars out-front and the caption ‘The first OPP station in ____ Ontario, Canada.’ We were elated with this news. We bought a home that had a history. When we bought the house, the age was unknown and since it was bought out of proxy, we had to act fast and accept the little information they provided us.
The newspaper explained the two cold storage rooms we had in the basement. They were made of cinder block, one had a metal bed that was bolted into the wall, the door to the one cell was extremely heavy, and neither room had light switches or electrical outlets. They were nothing like any other cold storage room I had ever seen before.
Once the renovations began, things took a turn for the worse. My son’s friend was being attacked at night while she was sleeping. She would wake to her covers being pulled off her, to a sudden bolt of pain and so many times, she would come downstairs with new, unexplainable bruises. Some of those bruises were dark round circles. Those dark bruises looked a lot like a bruise caused by a paintball, and the others bruise … they were clearly hand and fingerprints cause by someone squeezing her arm, wrist and upper thigh really hard.
There were times when our older dog would sit pretty, speak and give a paw to the air. Our puppy was afraid to walk through the dining room. The computer would boot up on its own, the coffee maker would start in the middle of the night, instead of turning on at five fifty-five AM, which is when it was programmed to start. Curtains would move when there was no wind, water would turn on when no one was in that room and, so much more!
Through it all, my husband would still try to find a logical or scientific reason. He accused me of sleepwalking and turning the coffeemaker on manually, said our dog was practicing and our puppy was a chicken. The curtain excuse was because our windows were old and … basically … whatever other excuse he could think of.
One day in late January, we had a get-together. The men all watched a sports event, and the women and the children were downstairs in my son’s apartment playing WII Bowling. Our one friend brought her three-year old daughter (I will call her Beth); she was soon to be four. Halfway through the evening Beth asked my son’s friend (I will call her Tammy), if she could go upstairs and play in her room.
We all found that to be an odd request since Beth had never been up in the loft before. Tammy said yes and took Beth upstairs with her. Approximately twenty minutes later Tammy came downstairs, white as a ghost and clearly scared. We asked what was wrong and she wouldn’t say. She sat on the couch, brought her knees to her chest, wrapped her arms tightly round them and began rocking back and forth.
Beth continued to ask repeatedly to go back upstairs, but Tammy refused. She didn’t say a word, she just shook her head and continued to stare at the TV. We all watch in amazement as Beth sat beside her, rubbed her arm and said, “We will play with you too, we can all play together. He likes you.”
This piqued our curiosity. We all went upstairs, but Beth wouldn’t let us go up to the loft, only Tammy was allowed to go up there. We finally convinced Tammy to go back up while we stayed downstairs, just out of sight.
We listened as Tammy tried to teach Beth how to play Candy Land. Beth clearly said, “Wait, wait, wait, we have to play first then we’ll play with you.” Beth proceeded to sit at the top of the stairs on her bottom and talk with the air. She agreed that she liked to pretend the stairs are a slide too, and then she would laugh and slide down bouncing on her bottom.
Once at the bottom she would look up at the air and listen intensely as if she were receiving instructions. After a moment, she would nod and exclaim, “Okay and then we’ll play with Tammy!” This continued a good three or four more times. Beth’s mom told her that she could play one game with Tammy before they had to go. The sports event was over and we were all becoming rather concerned.
Beth didn’t listen and continued to use the stairs as a slide. Twice we heard her clearly state, “Don’t do that, that’s not nice.” Beth’s mom told her that it was time to go home. Beth said wait and proceeded to head upstairs. While walking up the steps she fell. She didn’t fall far, her dad rushed over and caught her before she was injured. That was when her mom said that it was time to go, and once Beth and her father were outside, Beth’s mom told me that she would question Beth about who she was playing with.
The next day I got a call from Beth’s mom. She said that Beth was playing with a little boy named Jeffry, he was her friend and he couldn’t go into the basement or onto the main floor because of the mean man and lady who lived in our home.
The mean man lived in the basement and the lady was on the main floor. He could only stay upstairs, and when the mean lady or man came upstairs, he would hide in the secret room. The boy also said that the mean man didn’t like Tammy, he hurts her in her sleep, and that is why he hides when the man is around.
While I was on phone listening to the story, suddenly, my glass shelf broke and everything fell to the floor. My husband and kids all ran into the living room to see what happened. No one was in the living room and there was no explanation. That was when I told my husband that I was cleansing the house, and if that did not work … we were moving.
I learned the prayers, bought the feather and smudge sticks, and waited until the next full moon. I smudged the house clean three times. The ruckus slowed down but never truly stopped. We would see a dark shadow at the top of the loft stairs. My eldest son was pinned in his bed by a dark figure, but to this day, he will not fully explain what happened, and Tammy was sure that the little boy never left.
So although things had calmed down, it never fully dissipated. We were a happy family that got along for the most part, but our emotions had changed. We were all edgy, we were arguing more often than not, and my son was hardly ever home. He would not sleep in his room, only on his couch and he would have a friend sleep over at least twice a week. With or without our permission, he didn’t care, he just didn’t want to be alone.
Approximately three months later, Tammy began waking to sudden jolts of pain and new bruises. She decided that it was time for her to find her own apartment. We completely understood. It wasn’t long after Tammy moved out that we put our house up for sale. We couldn’t sell it, so we decided to move and rent it out.
We must have ridden the house of those issues because our tenants never complained, and a year after they moved in, they bought our house. The only explanation we can think of is that when we left, the spirits must have left as well or they decided to play nice with our tenants.
Since the move, our family has mended. Our eldest lives two towns away but we see each other once a week, and we are getting along the way we did before we bought that house. Although I admit that I miss that house, I do not miss the activity.
Sass is a Canadian Author widely regarded for her work on her eleven book series entitled ‘The Coalition of the Supernatural’. She is the owner of sasscadeaux.com, which in August, 2012 will be celebrating its one year anniversary. Sass states, “In that time we have done so much. Our biggest goal is to embrace all our readers, answer all questions, and hopefully, have them feel like they are a part of our family.”
On a personal note Sass shares that her greatest accomplishment is her family as she says, “Without them, I am nothing”.
With her Degree in Administrative Health Coordination from Career Canada College and an additional course work in Computerized Office Essentials, Accounting Technology and Bookkeeping, Sass continued to build a diverse spectrum of professional expertise.
Paralleling her work experience with a profound interest in fictional writing stemming from her youth, Sass’s son actually discovered her true niche as a published author, allowing Sass to set her first series into the public with the unwavering support of her family and friends.
She shares, “My son was in grade eleven; he was completing his co-op course at the local computer shop. He decided that the family computer was too slow, he thought he would clean it up and make it faster. He noticed a file marked ‘Family Budget’ he wanted to see if we could afford to give him a raise in his allowance, inside the file were my stories that I had written over the years. Him and his friend printed their two favourite stories and demanded that I get published. He also asked that there was more action and less romance, in his opinion, it’s wrong for me to write those types of scenes. After an extensive negotiation, I agreed to publish the stories, but I refuse to remove the scenes. I explained that if he didn’t like the romance scenes, he can always turn the page.”
Currently mid-way through the publishing process on her first series ‘The Coalition of the Supernatural’, Sass is simultaneously working toward completing her second series ‘The Unity Series’ and her Indie Series ‘The Secrets of Albion Falls’.