Scary Short Stories

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3. The Colonial Boy

I have a friend who I'd known for several years before she ever shared this story. It has stayed with me ever since. 

She grew up in an old Victorian in Illinois. Starting around when she was three or four, if she slept in her room alone, she would hear footsteps coming down the attic stairs and down the hall to her room. Into her room would come a man wearing a trenchcoat and an old-fashioned fedora. He never hurt her or spoke to her, but he would just sit on her bed and watch her. If she screamed, he would put his hand over her mouth. (Her parents later said they heard "muffled" screams coming from her room.) She would beg not to have to sleep in her room, and often slept on the floor of her parents' room or with her brother, but she was too scared to tell anyone what was happening. Finally, after about three years, I think, he stopped coming and she never saw him again.

In high school, she finally told her mother what had been going on. Her mother felt bad and tried to find out more about the history of the house. The only unusual thing they turned up is that the house had been owned for many years by a local dentist whose young daughter had died as a child. (Whether she actually died in the house I'm not sure.)

Fast forward 30-odd years and my friend's mother runs into the woman that lives in the house now. (My friend and her parents have since moved to the east coast.) These were not the people they sold to, but acquaintances from the neighborhood. My friend doesn't know these people or have any contact with them. The mom and the current owner are chatting about the house and the current owner says that her granddaughter often visits and sleeps in the bedroom that was apparently my friend's. And she laughs and tells my friend's mom: "You know what's so funny? She always says a man visits her when she's sleeping...."

I am a completely rational person, but the idea that two little girls who've never spoken to each other, 30 years apart, would make up the same exact story? Kind of defies coincidence in my mind.

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