Gloom A novel

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 1 (v.1) - Chapter One-March, 1976

Submitted: June 13, 2019

Reads: 158

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Submitted: June 13, 2019




The darkness of the sun hit the van. 

We were making out when the truck driver hit us.

I was screaming; I saw the blood come down my boyfriend's face. He was out of it; he was unconscious.

And I vowed never to be romantic with another man again.

Then, as the wailing sirens blared, I saw the fire trucks, and ambulances. And I knew our date had ended in disaster.

That was on January 12, 1975.

My birthday.


Death is a subjective consequence of the main event in which my husband-to-be died in tragic circumstances; death was, and always was, the finality as a whole. I 'saw' it happen; I 'saw' the darkness of the car accident. Sex was wholesome, divine. And then it all stopped; it was something that I wanted to experience. And then it all ended in a horrible dream. I knew it was the end.

1976 had arrived.

A new year; a new way of thinking. 

And then I 'saw' a couple dead on a bed in a bedroom that was in a house in Ohio. And the girl with the butcher knife was laughing, while she screamed inside. She wore blue, flared jeans, and was barefoot. 

Blood spilled down the sharp edge of the knife, and she giggled until she gazed at me with a cold expression on her pale face; blood was a significant symbol of evil power. I didn't want to deal with her-yet; I didn't feel her evil gaze upon me until I dealt with other peoples' expressions of terror that seeped into my bones, and drained my face of lost energy. "Maddie, wake the hell up?", Mom asked me.  I closed my eyes for a second; I opened my eyes, and the mirror's reflection told me I was alive. 

"Mom, I had a bad dream. There was a girl with a knife in her right hand. And she killed her parents", I answered. 

"There's no one here, Maddie".

And she sighed, and took me out of the room, down the thin hallway, and towards the stairs. I reached the sparse looking kitchen, Dad was sipping warm coffee, reading The Washington Post, and eating breakfast

"Good morning Maddie".

"Good morning, Dad. I-".

"Bad things happen to those you love, Maddie. You know it's not as bad as the Watergate incident in nineteen seventy-two".

"Don't talk politics and journalism to me, Dad. I am scared something out of the ordinary, maybe on a supernatural event, has happened. And I'm scared out of mind". Mom seemed to side with her husband; the color television was on channel 1 morning news at seven o'clock. 

"I don't believe in the supernatural Maddie", Mom smoked a cigarette.

I looked at her, and frowned.

Something was going on; something that wouldn't go away.

I ate my breakfast, and then the front doorbell rang.

And it was the police, and the Coroner.

And my dead boyfriend's parents were watching me.

They were crying, and were accusing me of their teenage son's death.

"Don't point a finger at me", I stated.

And I knew, deep down, they were upset. 

They left me alone afterwards, and I decided to leave Ohio College. 

It proved to be the best thing to do in the aftermath of what happened.


If you think I wouldn't be married, and have children, and so on, you'd be correct. I 'saw' myself in a white wedding dress, and going down the aisle in the Catholic Church in Ohio in the future with a man I hadn't seen since David died. One hundred guests were suitably attired; the guests were eager to see me married to a stranger. Maybe I was on the rebound; maybe the stress had taken its toll on me.

Then, as I opened my eyes, Ohio's sign was gone...and I was feeling the weight was off my shoulders, then I knew I had to get away as fast as I could from the horror I was seeing.


I had my driver's license for a week when the accident happened. 

David, a poet, was writing when our lives changed.

It wasn't fair he had to suffer, and die.

We weren't a couple who were enjoying the limelight; we worked to survive America's downward spiral into chaos since President Richard Nixon resigned in August of 1974; President Lyndon Baines Johnson, was the Commander-In-Chief in The White House, and the shadows of the hallways dimmed, while the American flags swayed patriotically. I was a  member of the Democrat Party; I saw the gradual disintergration of the gloomy country I loved; I saw what was to come...and I didn't like it. 

And the shadow consumed me, and drew me into the abyss.


By and large the America I grew up in was shifting. 

Ohio wasn't like New York, Los Angeles, or California. My dream of being wealthy had vanished because of David's death; my dream of making enough money to have a house contained a sense of pleasure; my career path as an artist was known by my parents. I didn't hit the bars at night; I was reserved in my idea of liberation. But, in my way of thinking, I saw an ad in the Ohio Times


The house was $90,000.

It was cheap.

I had saved up $350,000 from my writing classes at night time.

I saw a man was smiling at me.

"Ernest Frederickson. Real Estate Agent", the African-American Agent, said.

"Maddie. I am looking forward to having a place for my own".

"The Branch House is a 1950's style house for several owners. It has three bedrooms, a laundry, a spacious lounge room with color television. And a kitchen as well. There's a bathroom, and a WELCOME mat outside the front door. And a herb garden, and guest rooms on the second floor".


"I'm not a conservative woman", I said.

"This is 1976; this isn't 1956", Ernest stated.

"Thank God for progress", I smiled.

Ernest nodded. 

"Are they're any questions?".

"Yes, where's the legal papers that I need to sign before you hand me the house keys?". He nodded.

"Sign here...and here....and here", Ernest grabbed a black felt pen.

I did as he told me to do, and I had my own home.

"Well, I've done everything that's necessary. Have a great day, Maddie".

"Thank you. Good-bye!".


And he walked to his blue 1974 car, and drove away in a hurry.


The house was gothic looking. 

I didn't think that I would separate myself from my parents' hold. There was something unusual about the vibe of the place; something like out of a bygone era. And it was gloomy; it didn't sparkle with life. 

I didn't want to say haunted house.

It was too easy to condemn me to savage the idea in my head that ghosts lived in here. No, there was a different atmosphere; there was a darkness. I saw the white curtains around the dusty chairs; I took them off with my cold hands. I wanted to install a heater to keep me warm.

And then I saw a girl smiling at me.

She was hlolding a butcher knife in her right hand.

It dripped blood on the mat. 

And she disappeared, and I screamed.


I blinked. 

Was she the same girl who I 'saw' before?.


She seemed to smile, as the blood spilled.




It was a dream.

Wasn't it!.

I was about to think about what to do when a woman appeared.

And I stared at her like she shouldn't be there in the first place.

"May I help you?", she asked me.

"No. I don't like neighbors who bother me", I answered. 

And I closed the front door, and shivered in the gloom.


She came back an hour later.

"I'm Kara Dean Westwood, the former owner of the house. May I speak to you, Maddie?", she asked me.

"Wait! How do you know my name?".

"I'm a psychic".

"Go away, or you'll regret meeting me".

"The Ohio Police are on my books".


"Yes, there's a sense of gloom in the air. There's a girl who attacked her parents with a knife; a girl who is insane".

"I 'saw' her".

"Yes, you did Maddie. Now, can we talk?".

"Fine, come inside".

And she nodded.


"The girl is insane because she is psychotic. No one knows why she is scaring you; no one seems to think more deaths is to come, Maddie. We're drawn to our own feelings, and thoughts; we're damned if we do anything. I didn't want to make you feel sad, angry, or scared; I was here to warn you about the horror that's to come. So you can live, and with my help, you'll be living a long time in this house outside of Ohio", Kara said.

"Why me? I 'saw' her. She has attached herself to me".

"That is tricky for all of us. You need to close your eyes. And think of her. Then her prescence will be heard. I can get her to leave the house in which she lives in". Seconds later, they 'saw' the girl was holding onto the knife. "Death is glorious", the girl said. Kara spoked to her.

"You must leave this house; you can't attach yourself to the house". 

"Go away! This is my home".


And she faded away, and disappeared into the Next World.


Page 1.





© Copyright 2019 Robert Helliger. All rights reserved.


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