Locked away in attics, basements, and dark corners across the world are stories of beings and beasts that hide in the night.
These are those stories.
This is the Sleepless in Suburbia Podcast
I’m Brooke, case manager for our team, and this is the audio recap for Case 123: The Shrieking House.
I grabbed my phone as it vibrated across my wood patio table. Ford’s name lit up on the display.
“Hey lady, how are you?” I asked, sliding my podcast case bookmark into my copy of Summit Lake by Charlie Donlea.
“Hey sorry I don’t have a lot of time, I’m between parent meetings… but did you see what’s going on in the inbox?” Ford said, her heels clicking softly on the tile as she walked down the school hallway.
I put Ford on speaker, heading to the inbox, “No I’ve been reading outside for the past couple hours.”
“It’s cloudy and sprinkling,” Ford said.
“I know it’s weather perfection,” I replied, giving the inbox a double-take. “Is there some glitch in our server Lo needs to look into?”
3:33 pm 13 emails with the subject line The Hous3 That Shri3ks. The e’s in the words the, house, and shrieks were all replaced by the number 3 instead of the letter. Each of the 13 emails contained the same short email.
Subject Line: The Hous3 That Shri3ks
Our town has a plagu3 upon it. A hous3 so rip3 with dim3nsional int3rs3ctions, at tim3s th3r3’s a cong3stion of activity so powerful the windows vibrat3 with 3n3rgy. D3mons pull th3ms3lv3s from the 3arth. Childr3n scr3am in the night. You must help us. You must make it stop.
Each e again the number 3.
“I’ll ask Lo to look into a server issue or something?” I said, bringing the phone back to my ear. “In the meantime, let’s follow up with Darla to get this haunt on the books.”
There was a long pause, “Ford? Did I lose you?”
“It doesn’t feel right,” she finally said.
Something fluttered in my subconscious, “Tech issue, that’s all. I’m sure our contact form got corrupted or something.”
“I hope you’re right,” Ford said, ending the call abruptly.
This home is located in Barstow, about 75 miles west of Forester, with a population of around 10 thousand.
The house itself looks adorable. It’s a small home with a large porch connected to the home’s back and an over an acre lot framed with a low vintage designed white-washed picket fence. It was built in 1932 from a kit purchased from Sears. The style, known as the Gordon, could be bought to make five or seven rooms and a bathroom. The main level has a kitchen, living room, bathroom, dining room, and two bedrooms. The second floor has two bedrooms and a water closet (a tiny room with just a toilet and a small sink).
The monthly house payment was only $35 to $60, depending on the kit’s size. We actually found a 1930s ad for the home; we will share it on Facebook and Instagram, we’re @sleeplesssuburbiapod.
Ford loves her crystals class, and she’s asked to do a Crystals Corner each episode for the next couple of weeks. This week’s Ford approved crystal is Clear Quartz, considered the master healer of crystals and stones. This minimally colored stone has a wide array of purposes. You can put it with other stones to cleanse them or place it in a sunny window to jumpstart the room’s positive energy. Carry this stone with you to help amplify one of your intentions and to protect you against negative energy. Clear Quartz is an excellent stone to start your collection with, and Ford encourages you to find a local shop if at all possible, to purchase your stones from. If you don’t have one near you, to test and see how the stones feel, there are lots of small shops on places like Etsy to get some pretty great stones. And that closes Crystals Corner for this week.
The only thing keeping Pru’s family up at night is Kickstart; she has the energy of about five toddlers, at all hours of the day and night. Her best puppy life has exactly two speeds: zonked out asleep and mock ten hyperdrive.
Lo’s been working to update our website, including increased security stuff (because cybersecurity is her slow jam) and getting new blog posts and other content added. You’ll also find that she added a tab to our Patreon page, where patrons can access some pretty fun perks and exclusives. If you want to investigate what’s happening for our patrons, go to sleeplessinsuburbia.com and click the Patreon tab.
Claire has lost her ever-loving mind and has signed up for a duathlon. It sounded terrible before I googled “What is a duathlon”. This crazy woman is signing up to run, bike, then run again… on purpose, you guys. On purpose! That’s a 10k run, a 40k bike ride, and then they wrap everything up with a 5k run. If my math is correct, that’s a million and a half miles. If you see me running, RUN, because I’m getting chased by a bear, serial killer, or flesh-eating supernatural creature.
I had another visitor during a wakeful moment in the night. This woman came to me shrouded in green light. I noticed the green glow lighting up the foot of the bed before I saw her. My eyes settled on her, and I was instantly flooded with a feeling of unease. Trish’s words came to me, “Ask her what she needs.” But the vibe off of this night visitor, I didn’t want to know, she scared me. Where the previous visitor in the sweater didn’t seem to notice me, this one stared right at me. After 2-3 min, the woman faded away, and the green haze lingered a little bit longer. I definitely need to figure out how to keep her mincing energy out of my bedroom, or I’m never going to sleep.
Lark is just starting to settle in for the fall semester, she’s decided to cousin nap James and Michael this weekend for a mini road trip (it’s only a couple hours away), to scare the bejesus out of them at a Drive-Thru haunted attraction. It’s themed like the Walking Dead; as you’re driving through, your goal is to escape the undead’s hoards. It’s guaranteed that James will not sleep for weeks, but maybe a good zombie scare will soothe his 13-year-old edges a bit. I said with deep passion, heck to the no, to Larks invitation to join them on this haunted adventure. I scary movie, I paranormal investigate, I do not haunted house attraction. Why? People scare me, especially people in masks or makeup, where I can’t ID you in a line up if I need to.
Historical Society Research
Buckle up, spooky crew, because this history is crazy. When Lark and Pru gave me their research, I considered calling a meeting, so I could vote to skip this property altogether.
It’s such a dumpster fire of intense past that I’m not even sure where to start. The best place to begin is with the dark history that may have tainted the ground not only where the Shrieking House was built, but also the entire town of Barstow.
Sifting through old boxes of material at the Franklin County Historical Society, Pru found several mentions of the execution of 6 civil war soldier deserters on the property. One document, presumably written by a bystander, detailed how the wife of one of the men begged for his life to be spared. He’d only left his reimagine to come home to their new baby boy. The execution order was upheld, and the woman fell to the ground, unable to walk, she was left there through the night as she cried uncontrollably alone.
In the online archives, Lark found evidence that the property may have been the same location as a pre-civil war slaves quarter. The land was once owned by Captain L. Carter, Captain of one of the first Militias in the Civil War, and his wife, Lucretia. Lucretia is listed as owner of the slaves who worked the property, and there were lots of rumors that she’d had “inappropriate” experiences with some of the young enslaved men….. which may have led to her death at a young age. Lucretia was found bludgeoned to death in the barn; no one was ever convicted or even suspected of her death. At the time she was attacked, everyone claims to have been away from the farm.
Trigger warning on the next couple pieces of history.
In 1974 just one street over from the Shrieking house, a violent murder took place, the murder weapon, an ax. A woman came home to find her husband in the heated passion of an affair. As the wife went to the shed, the mistress fled the home, leaving the husband the only one inside when the wife returned with an ax. She struck him at least six times with the ax, as he laid bleeding, she turned a shotgun on herself, completing suicide.
Unfortunately, this type of violence wasn’t a rare occurrence in Barstow; the city has an unusually high rate of suicide attempts and completions per capita.
One of those suicides was a man who completed suicide with a revolver in front of his young nephew while standing in his backyard.
Trigger warning stuff over, so if you’ve been hitting the 30 fast forward button, you’re good to rejoin us now.
You can see the town cemetery from the home’s front window, including not one but three different mass graves. One of the mass graves is the final resting place for as many as 27 people who succumbed to scarlet fever. A fire broke out in a workhouse on the edge of town, killing nine people; the families did not have the means for private plots and burials, so they were all buried together in the second mass grave. We couldn’t find the details on who rests in the third mass grave. The headstone for that large plot simply reads, “may they rest with the lord”.
There are whispers in the region, to avoid the town altogether, or risk falling victim to a curse.
The house had such a gnarly reputation that even the Roman Catholic Church wrote a 192-page report, classifying the Shrieking House presumed haunting as a demonic infestation, oppression, obsession, and possession.
Another infestation, but this time of a supposedly confirmed demonic variety.
A famous paranormal researcher visited the location in the 70s, warning that quote, “Prepare yourself, the oppression, it’s far from over.”
Two trusted sources, both site demonic oppression as an explanation for the happenings in the house. But what about the people who’ve lived in the home?
Paranormal activity in the home can be traced back as far as 1965, and from 1999 through January 2002… 7 families called the shrieking house home. Seven families in less than 3 years. That’s a lot of broken leases.
In early 2003 a family of 3, a momma, and her two young kiddos moved to the idyllic home, seeking stability after a devastating life event—a messy divorce. The trio lasted only 12 days in the house before they were forced to flee for their lives.
By comparison, Amityville’s Lutz family lasted 28 days, plagued by intense paranormal happenings that sparked such popular scary movies as the Amityville Horror.
Back to our family of three. Natalie, the mom, was looking for a fresh start, and couldn’t believe her great fortune. A cute house, with a huge yard, in a quiet town for her children to grow up in.
Things were a bit off about the people and the property from the start. While on a tour of the property, the current owner asked Natalie if she understood the great responsibility of living in an old house such as this?
She found the question pretty odd but thought they simply meant the quirks that came with keeping up an older home.
Despite being a beautiful home, with everything the family could ask for, there were oddities about the house.
Every single door inside the home had in eye hook lock; you know the ones I’m talking about. Where they have the hook and you flip it over, and it fits into a ring…. each door had one on the OUTSIDE of the door. Like they were trying to keep something in.
Eight-year-old Memphis mentioned to Natalie that the neighbors seemed to go out of their way to avoid the house. Going as far as to cross the street when walking along the sidewalk and then cross back once they were past the house.
Everything was weird, but sometimes small towns are eccentric like that, a little odd, but there weren’t any red flags to warn the family off.
They couldn’t wait to move in.
On day 1, March 15, 2003, while Natalie and her children Ryker and Memphis carried boxes in from the uHaul, a car pulled up beside them on the street. The passenger window rolled down a few inches, and someone shouted, “hope you will get along well with them.”
Natalie sat down the box she carried, walking towards the car, but it sped off before she could get any answers from the driver.
That wasn’t the only strange happening on their first day in the Shrieking House. After a long day of moving and unpacking, the trio sat in the living room, gobbling down pizza. Ryker was the first to notice unexplained bright light streaming in from the front window. It was as though someone was blasting a spotlight into their home. Natalie went outside to investigate, expecting to find a car with high beams pointed towards her house, but the street was empty.
Inside, the light no longer shown in the window. Shortly after midnight, Natalie awoke to the same blinding light coming through her bedroom window, but again there was no explained source outside. This became a regular occurrence, so much, so they stopped looking for a source of the light because they knew when they went outside, they’d find nothing but darkness.
Two weeks into living in their new house, the children begin telling Natalie about ghosts stalking the hallway outside of their rooms at night. Natalie chalked it up to the overactive imaginations of two young kids adjusting to life in their new home without their father.
On the third night in the house, Memphis was in the basement, where she encountered something so horrifying that it caused this sweet baby girl to wet his pants. Memphis described a shapeless form that first lunged at her and then chased her up the stairs. That is literally my greatest childhood fear. Did anyone else race up the stairs as a kid from the phantom monster lurking in the dark? And this little sweetheart actually came face to face with that fear.
Natalie quickly noticed cold drafts and chills throughout the house; they were so intense that she bought a digital air temperature gauge. She was shocked by the finding. While most of the house rested at around 70 degrees F, some cold spots were as low as 32 degrees. It was March, so the outdoors was still cool, but not 30 plus degrees F cold.
Shortly after the temperature disturbance, strange electrical sensations began impacting all three family members. While moving throughout the home, they would feel an electrical charge race across the back of their neck, through their body. So concerned the family was somehow getting mild electrocution from the wiring, Natalie called an electrician to evaluate the house. He found all the wiring to be in safe working order.
These electrically charged sensations, some research suggest, are the result of portals.
Very quickly, activity in the house intensified.
Doors opened and closed on their own. Natalie began latching the eye hook locks already installed on each door, very quickly, the house revolted. While shut and latched with the hook locks, the doors shook violently on their own. Causing loud banging sounds.
Activity in the house flared so aggressively the children used the buddy system to leave a room, fearful of getting attacked by something they couldn’t see if they were alone. It wasn’t the banging doors or electrical current sensation that truly scared the children. It was the demonic being Ryker encountered in the basement that began following him around the house.
The beings coming through the portals took pleasure in messing with the family by moving items around the house, paying particular attention to mess with the kid’s bedrooms. The being from the basement that followed Ryker was a clown with sharp teeth that appeared from around corners, under beds, and even in Ryker’s chest of drawers.
The family heard deafening disembodied screams within the walls of their house. They describe what would begin as a male-sounding voice growling, but the voice would level up to eardrum piercing shrill screams.
One night the children slept in their now shared bedroom; their open door slammed shut. Natalie, sitting on the couch reading a book, rushed to the room, turning the handle and pushing on the door with no result. Inside, the children cried and screamed:
Leave us alone.
Natalie pushed harder on the door, throwing her shoulder into it until she felt a portion of her shoulder cave.
Inside the room, the children huddled together on the bed, the room’s closet coming to life with supernatural forces. The closet door flung open with such force the doorknob busted a hole in the wall. Violent pounding and screams came from the darkness of her closet. They could also hear several voices jabbering from the depths of the closet.
Natalie sobbed in the hall, dropping to her knees, reciting the lord’s prayer. Halfway through the second time, the bedroom door creaked open. She rushed in, wrapping her arms around the kids, and together, they raced from the room, down the hall, and out the front door.
From the lawn, looking back at their new home, they watched a black mass race room to room, looking for them.
That was the last time Natalie, Ryker, and Memphis were in the home. Natalie hired movers to pack and move the family’s items.
Onsite Interview Recap
“Do you want to start with the portal locations?” Darla asked, stepping off the sidewalk onto the cursed property’s grass.
“I think I’ll wait in the car,” I mumbled, lingering as the rest of the team followed behind Darla.
“What was that, dear?” Darla asked over her shoulder, pushing her gray-streaked brown french braid off her shoulder.
Over Ford and Claire’s giggle, I said, “A bar, I’m going to need a bar after this one.”
“Right down there, left on Sycamore, just past the Dime Suds Stop on the Right is Leroy’s Bar and Grille,” she stopped by a flag pole topped with a faded American Flag hanging limp without a trace of wind. “Not much of a grille anymore, but he’s got cold beer, whiskey, and fairly clean glasses.”
The flagpole sat on the edge of the front yard property line; nothing about the location gave off a portal to hell vibe. It felt like any other yard, in any small town across the country. I breathed a sigh of relief, relaxing slightly since arms didn’t shoot up from the ground to pull us to hell after stepping on the grass.
“It was right there,” Darla pointed about 5 feet tot he right of the flagpole. “That three children chasing locusts around the field over there saw the creepster pull itself from the ground.
Ford wrapped her arms around herself, squinting up at the sun; I didn’t blame her for not wanting to look at the spot. We were a foot, maybe two, away from the location of a terrifying sighting. It was late summer; the kids ran around a grassy field catching locust and throwing them at each other. Seven-year-old Brooke or now year-old Brooke, would punch a jerk for throwing a bug at me, especially a locust.
The kids said that suddenly the ground began to tremble, scared to get swallowed by an earthquake, they ran for the edge of the field. From the hazy purple hues of dusk, they saw something moving around on the ground in front of the white house. They stopped running to help, thinking someone had fallen because of the earthquake. One boy skidded to a stop, the other two running into his back.
It wasn’t an elderly neighbor, knocked to the earth by nature. Frozen in fear, the boys watched as a bone-thin clown, with a long drawn out white face, razor-sharp jagged brown teeth, frizzed out blood-red hair around the crown of it’s head, and no eyes clawed his way from the soil. Free from the earth, the clown, clothes caked in damp dirt, took a couple of long strides towards the boys. Then he looked back at the house like someone had called for him, and he turned, striding quickly across the yard… opening the doors of the cellar walking in while making eye contact with the boys. It was then they realized glowing yellow eyes now looked at them from his once eyeless face.
A couple of times a year, rumors circulate through Barstow that the yellow-eyed clown has been seen pacing the property.
“Is this the same clown that followed Ryker around the house?” Claire asked, flipping through her notes.
“Based on descriptions, we believe so, yes,” Darla nodded, pulling a cigarette from her purse. “Do you mind?”
“Not at all,” Claire said. “Are there any other creatures of nightmares, crawling from the earth here?”
“Here,” Darla said, taking a long pull from her cigarette, considering for a moment. “Oh no, not here, stretch arm man and blob manifest it the alleyway.”
Well, of course, they did, I thought.
Beside the property was a narrow alley leading to the town center. Here dozens of people claim to be chased by a humanoid figure, so tall that it’s head nearly reaches up to the street lights dotting the alley. It’s arms are extended, stretching to the ground. When it runs after you, you can hear it’s pincer-like claws dragging the ground. Darla’s older brother Harry had a scar on the back of his right calf after being slashed by the stretch arm man.
Palling around the alley with stretch was what locals call the blob. This misty black mass bubbled around on the ground, sometimes gathering upon it’s, getting as tall as the picket fence running alongside the alley.
“Does the blob chase people too?” Ford asked.
“Not to my knowledge, it seems almost bashful, once someone notices it…. It sinks into the ground until all traces of it are gone.” She gave us a wave. “Now just this way is the cellar door.”
The cellar could only be accessed from outside the home, just past the white wooden door, were a handful of cement steps leading to a dirt floor room. The room is super cramped, maybe 6×6. The strange thing is, in the center of the room, is a puddle of mud? Muck maybe? Darla wasn’t exactly sure what it was, but the orangish-red mess never dried up, and it smelled like James’s hockey bag. Okay honestly, the smell wafting up the cellar steps was putrid.
“Can we go down and poke around?” Ford asked.
“You ladies are more than welcome to poke around wherever you’d like, but I’m already closer to this hell trap than I care to be.” Darla said.
“Because?” I pressed.
“Because hell hath no fury like these creatures when they’ve had you or lost you,” Darla snapped. “If you’ve lived here if you’ve walked by, if you investigate or get nosey about the insides, it doesn’t matter. If you’re too close to the pull of this place, they can haunt your dreams and jack with your emotions. You might come in here all happy go lucky, but you can’t control the feelings when you leave. You’ll get the rage, sadness, anger, uncontrolled aggression.”
“Damn,” I breathed, not realizing that the words had slipped from my lips.
“Damn’s right, I know at least 15 people in town and some as far out as the county that are overwhelmed with the same nightmare.”
The nightmare is similar for each sleeper; it takes place in the basement, just a narrow dirt wall from the cellar. They walk down the open back wooden stairs, turning into the basement. They come face to face with a horrifying sight in the room. In the corner, there’s a dimly lit flickering light over an open shower. There’s a large man (both tall and muscular) leaning into the shower area; when they get closer, they find the water pouring from his hands is red. He’s rinsing blood off them; droplets splatter onto his apron. When the man turns towards the dreamer, they wake up.
It made me think back to my dream, about the older man performing an autopsy on himself.
“Animals don’t fare too well here either,” Darla continued, walking towards the property line’s edge.
“What do you mean?” Lo asked.
“Pet’s, dead, a bunch of em.”
“Seriously? How many?” I asked, forcing my chin up, so my mouth wasn’t gaping open.
“9,” Darla said. “All happy, healthy, young, until they weren’t.”
It seemed like these entities on the property didn’t like pets in their house or something about the energy there didn’t mesh well with pets. The nine documented tragic pet deaths on the property included 1 hamster, two kittens, three puppies, one bunny, one ferret, and a hedgehog.
Poor Lo looked especially green around the gills.
“Is there anything else we should know about the property or elgided supernatural activity?” I asked.
“Oh, mercy, yes. My advice don’t investigate…” she said.
Interesting considering she’d been the one to email us. I said, “But, you reached out to us.”
She shook her head, “I most certainly did no such thing.”
I looked at the team. Then who’d been responding to our emails, and how did she know to be here?
“Do you wanna hear about the other stuff?” Darla asked, walking even further away from the house.
- Phantom smells are noted in the house:
- Baking cookies
- Perfume – specifically a rose smelling perfume
- Rancid meat
- People report getting attacked in the house; some only made it as far as walking into the home.
- These Attacks include:
- People getting thrown like rag dolls.
- People being shoved against a wall and held there by unseen forces.
- People are shoved downstairs.
- People are pushed from behind.
- People develop painful bruises.
- Others become physically ill by just going near the house.
- Trigger warning – some have reported being touched inappropriately.
- People report hearing and even capturing EVPs of:
- disembodied voices
- Mumbled prayers
- Heavy breathing
- Screaming – like what Natalie, Memphis, and Ryker heard
- Passerbys have reported seeing the shadowy mass moving across the windows in the home.
- People have also come face to face with monsters, leprechauns, and clowns while on or near the property. It seems like this house, or the evil hiding within it takes a particular interest in terrorizing the children in the home and tapping into adults’ childhood fears.
- At least three former residents showed signs of demonic possession.
- Previous residents and past investigators believe there are five non-living tenant regulars on the property :
- A man
- A boy
- A woman
- A girl
- And what’s very possibly a demon.
Watching the sunset, it crossed my mind to cancel the entire thing, but we were already setting… it was too late to turn back.
“How many packs do we need?” Lo asked, pulling a tote from the SUV. “Three? One inside, one front yard, and one backyard?
My stomach cramped, twisting into a knot. “One.”
“But we can cover three times the area in the same amount of time if we divide and conquer,” Pru said, pulling three backpacks from the now open tote.
“We aren’t dividing tonight, one pack,” I said, probably a bit snarkier than I meant.
“It doesn’t make sense to,” I cut her off.
“Lo, one pack, we aren’t investigating outside of the group tonight.” I rubbed a spot on my forehead that was beginning to throb. “I don’t…. It’s…. Something’s shifting here; I want everyone close.”
Lo’s hand dropped from her hip, and her pinched eyebrows softened. “You okay?” She asked.
“I’m not sure if any of us are okay,” I said, reaching into the car for the protective medallion my Great Aunt Beatrice had given me. “I really don’t know.”
This investigation’s single research pack included:
- 3 – Digital Voice Recorder
- Digital Camera
- Full Spectrum Video Camera
- Complete First aid kit
- 3 – Flashlights
- Avon skin so soft bug guard
- Tofurkey jerky – whatever that was
- Holy water from St Anthony’s
- 6 crosses blessed by Father Blackburn
- 6 Clear Quartz Crystals compliments of Ford
- And a handwritten note from Maggie, hidden in the front pocket. It read, “Have fun tonight. Hope you find all the ghosts. Miss you. Love, Maggie.”
These are our experiences.
“Let’s start inside,” Claire suggested. “Get it out of the way.”
Walking across the front porch, a familiar twist ripped through my stomach; I took a deep breath; everything was going to be okay. It was just a house with potential paranormal activity—nothing less and nothing more. I closed my eyes, trying to slow my pounding heart when something knocked into me.
“Sorry,” Lo said. “The doorknob is hot; it burned me.” She held up her hand, revealing a red circle on the palm.
“Let me try,” Ford said. Stepping up and twisting the knob. It opened, no burn, no resistance. “Weird.”
The air in the house felt charged, it’s hard to describe the sensation. It’s not exactly like an electrical current, it’s more subtle than that. The air, maybe the home, it felt alive. It sort of reminded me of the feeling of getting out of the ocean and a cool breeze blows across your damp skin on a warm day. A mild cool woosh that sweeps your body in waves.
“Woah, do you feel that,” Pru breathed.
Claire nodded. “Kind of peaceful.”
For a long while, maybe an hour, we all sat, backs together facing outward around the living room—rolling audio and watching. We noticed a car with a muffler issue, passing by in front of the house. A dog barked a street or so away. A shadow shifted in the corner. My head interrupted it’s swivel, neck jerking back to the hallway.
The darkened shape bubbled up and down, pulsing and rolling into itself. Working it’s way from the floor higher and higher. I tapped Lark’s leg, pointing to the hall. I felt Pru and Claire shift behind us, turning to face the same direction. It now stood over halfway to the ceiling, inching closer to us. Slowly at first, I almost didn’t notice the shift from upward momentum to forward. It crawled our direction, then lurched forward suddenly like a big cat launching itself towards a gazelle. I shifted forward in front of Lark, squeezing my eyes shut as the black mass loomed over us. Then… it was gone.
We looked around the room dimly lit from the streetlights. No dark mass, and we were all still in one piece. Behind me, Ford blew out a long sigh before hitting play on her recorder. We caught this EVP during the time either right before or while the darkness came for us.
Please Listen to Show for EVP.
“Demon in the house,” Lark said.
Did you also hear the growl?
We worked our way to the kitchen, looking out the windows towards the ally Darla had shown us earlier. From deeper inside the house came bang bang. I broke my own rule, walking alone into the hallway, where the door to the basement swung open and slammed shut on it’s own. Without thinking, I dodged through the door down the nearly pitch-black staircase towards the basement.
Someone called my name as I slowly traversed the stairs, careful not to lose my footing. Behind me, I heard another set of feet working their way down the stairs. One of the girls was braving the bowels of the home with me. A smell assaulted my nose, causing me to cover my mouth and nose with my hand. Old meat, the smell was so thick I could taste it. “Do you smell that?” I said through my hand.
Another step-down and a cold chill encompassed my body. I shivered, torn between wrapping my arms around myself to ward off the chill and covering my face from the smell. I had to be close to the bottom of the steps. From the darkness, a sound washed towards me at first, a faint whisper barely heard, growing in force and volume until it was a man’s scream. A force knocked me backward, but one of the girls caught me from behind. The middle of my back began a dull burn, growing with intensity until I stepped away from whichever team member supported my back.
I reached behind me; no one was there. I screamed, stumbling up the stairs as fast as I could, tears sliding down my cheek. In the hall, I ran towards the living room, into Ford’s arms. “Who came down with me?” I asked panting.
“What do you mean?” Ford asked, patting my back, I winched.
“Someone was behind me on the stairs; I heard the footsteps. Whoever it was caught me when the entity knocked me backward.” I said.
“It wouldn’t let us past,” Claire’s voice came softly. “None of us were on the stairs.”
A cry escaped my lips, “Check my back, get a flashlight, look at it.”
I felt the back of my t-shirt lift as a flashlight clicked on. “Three scratches,” Lo said.
A digital recorder caught the scream that plowed into me on the basement stairs. Let’s listen to that audio now.
Please Listen to Show for EVP.
The first scream you heard was the sound that came with a force that collided with me; the second scream was me.
“Wait, what wouldn’t let you pass?” I asked.
Lark described a faintly glowing figure peering out from the first door in the hallway, which led to a bedroom. The figure had stark white hands, with nails filed to a point, gripping the doorframe. Between the two hands was a sideways head with two glowing yellow eyes with pupils like a snake and single red tuff of red hair. It watched them, vanishing as I rushed by from the basement.
“And, we’re done inside,” I said.
Outside, we all took a collective breather before deciding to head to the ally for a quick investigation. We moved slowly down the alley, thankful for the streetlights overhead. Five feet in front of us, we heard a loud clang; a large trash can toppled forward and rolling towards us. We searched the area and didn’t see any raccoons or cats, but we still can’t say conclusively this was paranormal.
Loading up the SUV, Claire stopped tote in hand, facing the house. I followed her gaze, in the upstairs window, just visible over the windowsill were two yellow eyes looking down on us.
We reached out to Darla following the investigation, but have had no response from her. This is the first time in our history that a client has ghosted us after a completed investigation.
We agree with previous investigators that there are likely three portals here bridging the gap between our world and another or maybe others, plural. Making it possible for these restless and aggressive creatures to pass back and forth easily.
We believe it’s possible that countless entities come and go through the portals, with a few sticking around to be a regular ominous presence in the house and surrounding property.
This cute, cozy-looking home is proof that you can’t judge a book by it’s cover. By appearance alone, you’d never know what nightmares hide behind the white picket fence.
We would say, without question, avoid this location. Or if you’re braver than most, take your priest, holy water, smudge bundles, and crystals with you. We’re fascinated by the paranormal, we head out at night looking for it, but the risks far outweigh the curiosity at this location.
Without being able to get a hold of Darla or anyone else, we tried reaching out to the city office and historical association with the evidence we collected. We’ve yet to hear back. It’s not possible or safe to close Case 123: The Shrieking House. We’ll keep you posted with updates if we ever hear back from someone.
We will be back next week with another case; until then, thanks again for listening to Sleepless in Suburbia. If you enjoy our cases, please make sure to rate and review us wherever you listen to podcasts. When you do, take a screenshot. Then email the screenshot and your mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will send some podcast stickers your way.
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Until next week, stay away from Barstow, bye everyone.