By Steve Kremer
Bob and Joan were two newlyweds just starting out on their life together. She was a college student working part-time as a grocery store clerk and he was an engineer at a large auto manufacturer in Detroit.
As they were just starting out, finances were very tight. After much looking they finally found an apartment that they could afford. It was part of a fairly large apartment complex and their building housed about ten apartments. It wasn't in the best part of town but it was well maintained and clean.
Unusual things began happening soon after they moved in. The water faucet in the bathroom would sometimes go on all by itself; not on fully, just a small trickle. Bob, being an engineer, thought he could fix it by installing new washers. After installing the new washers the problem went away for a while. Then it came back again. He installed a second set of washers and again it fixed the problem for a while. But it soon returned. They noticed the water would only come on when the two of them were together in the apartment, when it was very quiet. After a while they got used to it. If the water went on one of them would just get up and turn it off.
One of Bob's hobbies since childhood was the building of detailed model airplanes. He had quite a collection of planes that he had built over the years. He had them in a glass case in their new apartment. Bob told Joan that the planes were very fragile and if she needed to move them for any reason to please let him know.
One night Bob returned home from work to find the planes moved around in the case. Some of them had parts broken off. One plane he had just completed was almost destroyed. When Joan returned home from work later Bob was ready to vent his anger. She denied moving or even touching the model planes. Bob's anger triggered a heated argument . Joan was angry that he didn't believe she had not touched the model planes. It was the first argument of their marriage and quickly escalated to include other issues. After an hour or so they stopped arguing and made up. They were amazed at how quickly they had become so angry with each other. After all the noise of their raised voices they finally sat together on the couch in the quiet apartment. Right at that point the water faucet began to trickle in the bathroom.
The next morning they discussed the broken model airplanes. Had someone broken into their apartment and destroyed the planes? If it was a burglar why wouldn't they have stolen the TV and stereo. Why only destroy the models?
Right around this time Joan's work and school schedule changed. Now she found herself at home alone during the day. Being around the apartment more now she met a few of her neighbors. Across the hall was an older gentleman who quickly told her his life story. He was a cancer patient who was currently in remission. The doctor's latest prognosis was good. She also met two young brothers who lived on the next floor up. They immediately struck her as a couple of party types glad to finally be out on their own. It was obvious that as well as being brothers they also were close friends. It was also about this time that she began to have the feeling that she was being watched. When she was alone in the apartment sitting at the kitchen table studying she would have the feeling that someone was in the apartment with her. She first thought it was just getting used to being alone. She never had the feeling when Bob was home. But it got worse as the weeks wore on. She found herself uneasy in her own home. She began to spend more time studying at the college's library finishing up and returning home just as Bob did.
Then two events shook the relative quiet of their apartment building. One day when Joan was just about to leave for work she was startled to hear the sound of a gunshot. She immediately realized it had come from the apartment across the hall. She called 911 and the police quickly responded. When they got no response from knocking on the apartment door they broke a window and found that the old gentleman who lived there had committed suicide by shooting himself with a rifle. There was no note left. They didn't know why he did it. The next day Bob and Joan went out of town for the weekend. When they returned Sunday evening as they approached the outdoor entrance to their building they were shocked with what they found. The door to the building was smeared with blood. As they entered the building the hallway was also smeared with blood and in several places the drywall had been punched in with blood surrounding the hole. They were curious what had happened so Bob went upstairs to talk to their neighbors, the two young brothers. As he went up the stairs he found more holes in the wall. He knocked on the door and was greeted by the older of the two brothers. The man had casts on both of his hands and bruises on his face. He explained what had happened Friday night.
The brothers had decided to stay home that evening and watch TV with the younger brother's girlfriend. They were drinking beer but soon they ran out. Instead of going out for more they remembered a large bottle of vodka left over from a previous party. Even though they were not fond of vodka they decided it to drink it anyway. As the evening wore on the older brother began to get very intoxicated and began to insult his younger brother and his girlfriend. When the younger brother responded to one insult the older brother began hitting both his brother and the girlfriend. The younger brother and the girlfriend fled the apartment and left his brother screaming incoherently as they left. Two hours later they returned to the apartment to find the older brother passed out in the building's hallway several fingers in both hands broken from punching the walls. As the older brother told the story to Bob he began crying. He said "I love my little brother, I've never gotten mad at him, I've never ever even hit him. I don't know what came over me. I don't even remember any of what I did, they told me about it afterwards." He continued. "They told me that my voice and what I was saying didn't even sound like me...like I was another person."
Bob and Joan had been planning to buy a house if certain good developments came along in Bob's career. Those developments began to look more certain and they began looking for a house.
After the suicide and the brothers fighting incident, things were very quiet in the building. The two brothers had decided to move out so that left Bob and Joan the only residents of the building. Joan had not had the feeling of being watched in the apartment for quite some time and began to be relaxed again in her home. They found a house to buy and began making plans to move in.
One morning Joan got up earlier than her husband and sat at the kitchen table reading a text book from one of her classes. She had her back to the bedroom door but all at once had the strong feeling that Bob had gotten up and was standing behind her. She turned around, and there was no one there. She looked in the bedroom and Bob was fast asleep. She felt anxious but decided to make breakfast then wake him up and tell him about it. As she stood in the kitchen she felt the presence again. She now was sure her husband was awake and walked out of the kitchen to greet him. Just as she walked out of the kitchen the lighting fixture that moments ago had been right above her head crashed to the floor. Bob had been asleep and only woke after hearing the crash.
In the past they had joked about "their ghost" and the strange things that had gone on in their building. But they didn't feel like joking about it anymore. They had bought their house and now all they had to do was stick it out until the move in date.
Again, a couple of weeks went by with no incident. Then one night Bob woke up to the sound of Joan having a bad dream. She was thrashing around in the bed and saying "No, No." He immediately leaned over in bed to wake her up. As he leaned over her he looked up to see a man standing in their bedroom. Bob jumped out of bed and dove at the stranger. Just as he would have grabbed the man, the man disappeared. Bob ended up crashing into the wall. Joan woke up and Bob told her what happened. He described the man as being so absolutely real. About forty years old, slightly balding, wearing a brown windbreaker jacket. He had a scowling mad look on his face and seemed to be reaching out toward Joan. Joan described the dream she was having as being chased by a man who fit the same description.
The very next night the same thing happened again. Except this time as Bob tried to wake up Joan he looked at the apparition and yelled "Go Away!" The apparition disappeared as Joan woke up.
They had no more visits from the man. They moved into their new home several weeks later.
The story above is true. I visited their apartment before they moved out. Bob showed me where the plaster had been put over the holes punched in the walls. He showed me the broken airplanes, and the faucet that turned on by itself. I had heard the stories up to this point but that was before the ghost actually showed itself. I knew these people well and believe what they told me.
Another true Ghost Story...
The Newlywed's Apartment is Copyright 1996 Steven M. Kremer. All Rights Reserved.
March 10, 2002
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