Estimated reading time — 8 minutes
So a little bit about myself before I relay a little bit of my story and if you guys enjoy it I will periodically come back and tell you a few more stories. Wealth may not run in my family but I sure inherited a lot of ghost stories.
The story/stories I’m about to recount have almost nothing to do with me. They are mostly to do with my grandmother, who was the sole inspiration and caretaker that I had coming from a defunct family. Thanks to her, I am currently in a good University and will be leaving for Japan in March on a full scholarship.
Anyways, before I even begin to tie in where I come into the story (if I ever get that far), I think the most important thing would be telling you guys a good background of my grandmother. My Grandmother was born on December 23rd, 1933, in Gangwondo province which is now a major province of South Korea. She was born to a poor family, her mother a poor YangBang (noble scholar class) and her father a farmer. With three of her sisters (whom live in all parts of the world now), and with my grandmother being the eldest, she was already the next in line to keep the house running (cooking, cleaning, laundry) at an extremely young age (7).
If you know a little bit about Asian history, you would know she was born during the Japanese occupation of South Korea. When my grandmother turned eight years old, I suspect my great-grandfather killed a Japanese MP, and they had to relocate to a different province to prevent my great-grandfather’s execution. During the escape, my grandmother was captured and sent to Japan to what she presumed to be a forced labor worker.
When my grandmother was in Japan, it started a long relationship she claimed she had with what she calls “our other halves.” When she was telling me the story, she told me she was going to take these stories to the grave. She had a strong belief that the same antagonistic nature of spirits would claim those who spread it. However, she came to the United States and converted to Christianity, and thus her storytelling began with a devout belief in Jesus, her protector.
Sorry for the digression. My grandmother was sold out to a disgraced Samurai family, the current head of the household had put down his father’s sword during the time of his country’s war and pursued academia and business. Therefore, while he had money, he was exceedingly looked down upon by his fellow countrymen. He had resorted to living with his wife in the middle of nowhere.
My grandmother was one of the three women workers the Head had purchased as labor workers. My grandmother was the youngest of the three, and was looked upon with great favor by the Oksan (Madam) of the house. She was barren according to my grandmother, and was glad to have her around the house, albeit it was never quite a true mother-daughter relationship, due to the racial implications.
However, the trouble began when one of the older women workers started to have an affair with the Head. During this time of Asian history, especially with war raging and Confucian values and morality taxing people’s consciousness, a good wife would have kept her mouth shut and simply accepted the fact her husband enjoyed a little love making on the side.
The only thing that bothered the Oksan greatly was the fact the Head was infatuated with the worker. The head started to neglect the Oksan, shun his own room, and would instead lie with her in her slave’s quarters. This infuriated the overly emotional Oksan to no end, and it finally blew over when the worker became heavy with child.
When the worker realized she was with child, she immediately tried every primitive trick to abort the fetus. She sat in cold water for a long duration during the early months, and when the swelling started to appear, she ingested a near lethal dose of poison to try and abort the baby.
The baby refused to be aborted, at this point, even my grandmother knew it was simply not possible for the baby to be alive any longer. What was growing in her fellow worker’s stomach was a stillborn if they were lucky, or at the very worst severely deformed.
However, the Head had caught the mania of having a child under his name. He promised to elope with her in Kyoto, and forge her Japanese citizenship papers as long as she bore him a child.
The Head had let his intentions known too late, and the damage was already done. The stillborn continued to grow in her stomach, and she did not have the heart to tell him of the acts she had done, certain that she would of been cast out to die when discovered.
The Oksan certainly was not a stupid woman, and a month before the delivery, no matter how much the worker had bind her stomach, or put on many layers, she was discovered.
The Oksan’s rage is one of my grandmother’s favorite thing to tell, she was so angry that it was the closest my grandmother saw to someone dying of a heart attack out of anger. Grabbing the Head’s father’s ceremonial sword, she dragged the girl to the middle of their large yard, where a well was kept for the little livestock they had.
Cutting off her hands, the Oksan cast the girl with the stillborn in her womb, over the edge of the well.
The Head was heartbroken, and in an era where divorce did not exist, he left alone for Kyoto permanently. Sending back home money every now and then to keep his estate running. According to my grandmother, this was where the “other” problems started to happen.
When the few other forced Korean workers tried to hold a small ceremony in the girl’s honor, the Oksan flew into rage again, and threatened to kill all of them if they tried to throw as little bit of rice into the well as offering. Fearing the now crazy disgraced Oksan, the forced workers including my grandmother hastened to obey.
The first problem began with the small puddles of stagnant water that started to appear around the main wooden porch near the well. A scuffle happened between the yard/garden worker and cook about who was leaving water behind on the walk, but ended at that. My grandmother being the youngest and weakest at the time, was charged with mopping the water up. She says she vividly recalls a long black strand of hair being in one of the stagnant puddles, but dismissing it as her own or one of the worker’s, and continued on with her day.
Weirder things began to happen as winter turned into spring, and many of the Japanese servants who worked the estates were spooked very badly and left. The slaves had no choice but to remain on the estate as long as the Oksan lived.
Stagnant water started to appear everywhere throughout the house. My grandmother was hard pressed to clean up all of the stinking water that the other slaves refused to touch. My grandmother was too young to full grasp what was fully going on, and instead just followed orders.
Already the slaves believed the girl who was killed heavy with child was beginning to haunt the estate, however everyone including my grandmother knew better than to talk aloud about it. She continued to work and mop up after the puddles.
One night as she was headed to bed, the Oksan ordered her to sleep with her. The Oksan made her lie next to her and held her like her own daughter, according to my grandmother, and this caused my grandmother of then to weep. The Oksan for the first time in months acted gentle toward her and helped her fall asleep.
However my grandmother’s sleep was cut short when she heard a light thud on the side of the paper screened wooden door. Believing it was all in her head or a stick thrown up in the breeze, she was about to head back to sleep when the paper screen at head level of the door started to darken. The paper had started to soak up water.
My grandmother, believing she was completely dreaming, walked to the door and opened it, to discover her fellow worker standing before her, her hands missing, and completely drenched in water, while still showing signs of being with child.
My grandmother began to talk to her now deceased friend, only to be met with silence. After my grandmother gave up talking, her friend only pointed with her stump to the Oksan. My grandmother rushed to wake her up.
Upon waking, the Oksan looked toward the door and gave a shriek, clutching my grandmother in both her arms and screaming bloody murder. My grandmother blacked out from the shock, as well as her grip.
When my grandmother came to, she claimed the Oksan had now retired to her own room, and had fallen ill. Over the course of the next few days, a few doctors and medicine men visited to no avail. There was nothing that could cure her illness.
Up until the day the Oksan died she was tormented, she claimed everything she drank, from the pricey plum sake the doctors tried to get her to drink, as well as water from the communal water stream tasted like dirt. Whenever she was alone, she claimed when she lifted her lids off her bowls to eat there would only be wet matted hair in the bowls. This apparently never happened when others were present.
The Oksan passed away, and with no one else to boss the workers, and with all the Japanese servants gone, my grandmother and her workers lived off of the estate’s savings until the Americans dropped the A-bomb and liberated North East Asia. My grandmother was one of the first people to get on the boat to return to Korea to find her family.
Now, I understand this story has no closure, and is almost childlike in quality, but there is where I would like to present the part that gives me chills and terrifies me to this day.
I heard this story when I was 10, and my grandmother’s ghost stories never quite scared me (as I’m sure it does nothing to you as well), there were better scares to be had. Sleepyhollow was more frightening to me at that age than my grandmother’s tales.
However, when I was 15, I was watching a Korean summer program that was running that summer. Every summer, a Korean broadcasting company would air a little creepy hour segment of scary shorts depicting urban myth and legends. It was your basic junk, don’t look up in the shower, never leave a little kid by them-self, etc etc.
However, a segment I watched that year made me take my grandmother a little bit more seriously.
One of the hour specials was dedicated to Japanese urban myths and spooky happenings. It was still the same junk, different names. Akai-Onna, scissor woman, bed monster. Etc.
However, if I remember correctly, there is an apartment complex in the Shiga prefecture of Japan, that is haunted by a very different ghost.
Every night, if you try to get on an elevator by yourself, the doors will be just sliding shut when a woman will call from just around the outside corner of the elevator, asking you to hold it. If you are quick to react and manage to hold the elevator, the woman will get on with you.
People on the show described her as a young lady who was obviously pregnant, and is soaking wet. A few people claimed she politely asked the person on board with her a floor (usually 5, fellow Asians in here knows what that means) and will get off before or after you depending on which floor you get off. She will always pick a different floor according to the people on the show, so you never step off with her.
Those who discover something is off with the woman drenching wet when it wasn’t raining aren’t so lucky apparently. Although it didn’t say if anyone directly started a conversation with her based off on her state of appearance, I can’t say. However, the victims on the show constantly said they had nightmares when they were aware of the girl’s “other” status during the ride.
I certainly got chills watching this, hunched over my computer in my hot summer room, with my grandmother sleeping in the next room. But rationality seeped in, and I relaxed a bit. I mean, it’s not that crazy, the chances are high of this type of shit happening, right? Right.
However, what came next sucker-punched me in the gut. Apparently, the “haunting” got so bad that the building superintendent himself went on a mission to find out what the hell was going on, after being plagued by a series of nightmares himself.
The segment went on with more and more information, but I could have recited it from memory. It used to be a noble estate, there was a disused well in the basement that was now overfilled with stagnant water and is hazardous to excavate. The Head left the estate to Kyoto, and they believe someone might have died in the well and the haunting may continue to this day.
I understand in the world of creepypastas and stories saying “this is a 100% true” doesn’t go far. But I have tried my best to relay all I can recall in the most concise manner from memory.
P.S: I can’t take full credit for any of the stories I contribute to this site or /x/. I simply transcribe what I heard from my family from memory, and will give credit where credit is due in my works (if people ever want to hear more. Hah).
Credit To: Bitters!!5vnyOocdDtO