Clubhouse mischief

I have to admit, when I read this story to myself, it seems pretty hard to believe and I don’t know to this day if it really happened or if there is some logical explanation for it. Even though it makes me feel a little foolish, I will tell what happened and you can make up your own mind.

I think that most of us know that its not the bright an idea to play with things you don’t understand, Ouija boards being right up there with the things you should avoid. However, teenagers do have a tendency to think they are invincible and the usual rules don’t apply to them. My father thought he was doing a great thing for the local kids when he adapted one of his outhouses into a clubroom for my teenage friends and I. We certainly thought it was marvellous. We all got together and painted it inside (a stunning shade of bright red as I recall) and made our own curtains. It looked great, we brought little bits of furniture from our various homes as well as stereos, board and card games etc.

For months we had the most brilliant time in there after school and weekends. It became the favourite place of most young people in the district and I felt really proud that this wonderful place happened to be in my very own backyard. As we worked our way through the board games, we discovered one of them was a Ouija board and decided to have a go with it. It certainly seemed like fun, it answered our questions accurately and put in some fun cryptic answers too. Nothing too scary happened the first time, so we kept doing it. Within a day or two it became the only thing any of us wanted to do, we’d all race home from school out to the clubhouse and whoever was there would set up the board. We were all pretty sure that it was only one of us answering these questions, but that didn’t matter, it was all part of the fun.

When things started to go wrong, it happened so slowly I don’t think any of us saw it coming. We would all laugh as the board told us that one amongst us had a large nose and that someone else looked silly in their outfit etc and didn’t notice at first that the answers were getting nastier and more critical until one day it announced that one of us was going to die and very soon. That certainly got our attention, but it did nothing to dampen our interest, in fact it only grew. Now we just HAD to know who was the doomed one and what would happen. It finally gave us a name after taunting us with a single initial for several days that could have belonged to about 5 of us. That girl was pretty shaken naturally so we thought we should try and find out how she would die and when in the hopes we could stop it. Of course we were stupid enough to believe it in the first place and even stupider to think that it would tell us the truth or that we would be able to prevent such a thing anyway.

The tone of our little clubhouse had changed dramatically now, we were all afraid and acting sneaky making our parents suspicious. We knew they would not approve of us using the board in the first place and certainly would not be happy with the information we were getting. But, as scary and dangerous as it was, it was also enormously exciting and we just couldn’t stop ourselves.

It came to a head, as was inevitable, one afternoon when things really began to get out of our control. The board began to demand that we should believe in it and we all shouted that we wouldn’t. One of the girls present went into some sort of trance, closing her eyes and refusing to talk. When she finally did, it was in a strange voice and she announced that one of the other girls was not to leave the room or she would die when she did. One of the others raced out to gather up all of our friends, I went to get my bible and we all went back into the clubhouse trying to work out what we could do to fix this situation before our parents found out.

I have to admit that I still don’t know whether what happened that night was some sort of group hysteria caused by how wound up we’d all let ourselves become. I can’t remember it all very clearly now, but I recall us trying to wake the girl in a trance and trying to drag her out of the room, only to find that even 5 or 6 of us couldn’t budge her from the spot. The girl who had been told she wasn’t allowed to leave was hysterically crying and one of the boys and I began to try and read from my bible. It seems hard to believe now, but it flew out of my hands and across the room, which was about all I could take.

I left and ran in to get my dad. He rang the other parents and before you knew it there were a dozen cars in my driveway and screaming teenagers everywhere. The girl in the trance was carried out by her very large rugby playing brother, the other girl was dragged out kicking and screaming and managed to stay alive in the process. The rest of us were carted away by our parents and my father locked the clubroom for the last time.

That was the end of that, none of us would ever speak about that night again. It seemed a lot easier not to go into it. I thought about it a great deal though, I’ve come up with a few theories about what could have happened that night.

1) Mass hysteria. This seems logical and perfectly possible. We were, after all, a group of over excited and easily bored teenagers with entirely too much time on our hands. From what I remember of the events, this doesn’t seem to explain it all well enough to me. I think there had to be more to it than that.

2) A ghost or spirit of some sort. Although the board identified itself by quite a few different names it seems to me it could have been some sort of mischievious or troublesome spirit having a few laughs at our expense. It was certainly dishonest and none of its predictions ever came true.

Well, that’s pretty much as far as my theory making went. I couldn’t see any other explanations outside of those really. Perhaps a couple of those among us had decided to play an elaborate joke on the rest of us, but since it was always a different set of people playing with the board at any given time, there wasn’t anyone you could really pick as the leader. Needless to say, I learned my lesson and I’ll never again dabble in anything that is in the least suspicious.

But I would still like to know what happened that particular night.

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