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The Woman In My Basement

the woman in my basement


Estimated reading time — 10 minutes

“Never ever go near the basement at night. Stay in your room until the sun comes up.” That’s what my mother always told me. I never thought much of it. Growing up, I never experienced anything out of the ordinary down there during the day. Just the occasional bump behind the walls and a few bad smells. l brushed it off as nothing but rats. Our basement was spacious so it wasn’t of surprise that those gross rodents made a hidden nest in there.

My mother’s mental and physical health had declined rapidly so I moved back in to my childhood room to take care of her, which was on the second floor across the hall from her’s. She kept my room the same as it always was, besides boxes of things she’d been storing in there. I moved those boxes into the attic and moved my own things into the room. It was always a happy home. But something in the air felt different from before. Almost like something there was trying to suffocate you and drain your happiness. The world felt less colorful there now.

It was getting late so I told my mom good night and went back to my own bed. I always made sure to lock my bedroom door at night out of habit since my mom always made me. I fell asleep swiftly, like something snatched me out of consciousness and into a dream. It wasn’t a regular dream. It felt like it was being controlled.. Like something wanted me to see something. I was an 8 year old kid again, living in this house. I was a curious child sneaking out of bed to explore the house since my mother never let me at night. I slowly and cautiously opened my creaky bedroom door, making sure I wouldn’t awaken her.

The room on the other side was somber. I crept down the stairs and tiptoed my way to the kitchen to find a flashlight. Everything looked and felt different in the darkness. The air felt disturbed and the shadows of the room danced behind the illumination of my newly found flashlight onto the lavender kitchen walls. There was a disgusting smell coming from down the hallway. It was something comparable to rotting meat. The smell almost made me retch as I came closer to the source.

The door leading to the basement was ajar and the scent seemed to be coming from down there. I was hesitant to completely open the door. I stood there for a moment with my shirt covering my mouth and nose to mask the smell. I finally found the courage to make my way down the stairs. Halfway down, I started hearing faint, incoherent whispers, and the smell seeped through the cloth covering my face even worse than before. There was a very dim, dancing light creeping from around the corner. I made a right turn when I reached the bottom of the stairs. The room was now very warm, as if a fire were burning.

In the middle of the room there was a massive crack in the concrete that glowed a dim shade of blood orange. There was a wooden ouija board centered on top, and 5 lit, red candles circling it on the floor. I looked closely to the corner of the room and saw a shadowy figure. Fear and curiosity made me shine my light towards the figure. A woman was hidden in the room, standing there facing the corner. The rotten smell was now close to unbearable, and the whispering was coming from where she stood.

The woman had no clothes on. Her skin was grey, wrinkled, scabby, and slimy. Her hair was a very dark shade of auburn and held thinning patches. The light from my flashlight alarmed her and she slowly turned around. Her eyes were the blackest of black. The only light in those dark, glossy eyes was from the reflection of my flashlight. She grew a smile stretching from ear to ear, with her teeth being dark yellow and decaying.

She stretched her arms out and deliberately started limping towards me. She began smiling more maliciously than before and cackling at me. The weak joints in her knees made her legs twitch and bend. I could hear the bones cracking and popping as she moved. I was frozen. I couldn’t believe what was happening. I backed up as fast as my heavy legs could move while they were weighed down by fear. I was too frightened to take my eyes off of this ravenous thing.

I snapped myself out of the panic-induced trance, turned around and ran. I made it to the top of the steps. As I glanced back for the last time before closing the door, I could hear her croaking. She was crawling up the stairs, twisting and bending her arms and legs.. Still smiling at me with that damn smile. I slammed the door and felt a hand grip my arm from behind. It was my mother.

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I woke up sweating and trembling. I checked my phone. It was 3:13 AM. I couldn’t fall back asleep for the rest of the night. I read a book for the rest of the night. In the morning, I asked my mom if she had ever experienced anything strange down there. She immediately frowned and asked “Did you leave your room last night?”. “No”, I said. “I was just thinking of what you always told me about the basement”. She firmly grabbed both of my shoulders and reminded me, “Please don’t ever go down there at night”.

I was too afraid to go anywhere near there after that dream. I couldn’t get what I saw out of my mind so I decided to go dig through the boxes that I moved into the attic to distract myself. It kept me busy as well as being as far away from the basement as possible. I didn’t find much at first. Just old pictures, toys, and things from school. One box caught my eye after a while of looking. It was hidden amongst others near the attic window. It was a brittle wooden box with a dull and dented bronze lock securing it.

I went looking for anything I could use to open it. I couldn’t find a key so I resorted to using a hammer to break the lock. My heart stopped when I saw it’s contents. It was the ouija board from my dream. I asked my mom about the box and she said that it was here when we moved in. It was obviously locked up with good reason. I decided that I would burn it after she fell asleep. I didn’t want anything related to that dream near my mom and I.

It’s 9:37 PM. I tucked my mother into bed and she’s now asleep. It’s time to rid the house of this thing. I prepared the fireplace with wood and lit it. I stoked the fire until it was large enough to burn the board. I tossed it into the flames. The smoke turned jet black.. just like the eyes from the woman in my dream. The crackling of the wood made the same sounds of it’s bones cracking. Was this just paranoia and lack of sleep causing the similarities? I felt uneasy but I knew I had to burn it.

I waited until the fire burned out and went to bed. I slept well knowing that thing was gone. I was awoken at 3:13 again. I heard my mom calling my name. I knew she most likely needed some water or help getting up to use the bathroom, but something seemed off about her voice. I turned on my phone flashlight and made my way to her room. Behind that door, all I found was an empty bed. She wasn’t in there.

A wave of anxiety hit me. Where could she be? Could her mental illness be getting so bad that she’s wandering around the house? Or is something more sinister going on? No. Who’s voice was calling me from her room? She was too slow of a person to simply disappear moments after I heard her voice. I took a deep breath and told myself she just got up by herself. I went looking for her. I checked her walk-in closet and the upstairs bathroom. She’s nowhere up here. The house is pitch black. How could she move around by herself in this darkness? *bang* I heard loud clashing coming from the kitchen. I warily walked down the stairs. “Mom?”

I thought I heard a faint cackling. It must be my imagination. After all, I have been on edge since that nightmare. I arrived to the kitchen. There were broken dishes and silverware scattered all over the floor, and the sink was overflowing with water as the faucet was turned on completely. My anxiety became overwhelming then. I have to find my mother. Where could she be?

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My immediate thoughts led towards the basement, but I told myself I’d never go down there. After more investigation, I found wet footprints leading down the hall and anxiously followed them. They led right to the basement door. My worst fears are becoming a reality.
My heart began pounding against my chest. I took a few more deep breaths to calm myself.

That’s when it hit me.. That horrid stench from the nightmare.. It was back. I stood there panicking. Many thoughts raced through my mind at once. Did burning that board release the creature from it’s captivity? What if that thing has my mom? All I knew is that I needed to find her. I can’t let it claim her life.

I slowly twisted the doorknob and opened the door. The smell was definitely coming from in there. There was no light and the only noise was coming from the washing machine. Why was the machine on? Did she soil herself and try to wash her clothes? A hard object rattled loudly in the washer. I stopped the load and opened it to find out what this sound was.

Her clothes were in there. They were filthy, bloody, and smelled horrible. There was something hard rectangular wrapped in them. I unraveled the bundle of clothes and immediately dropped what I had found onto the floor. There were two objects. The first was the ouija board. It was somehow still alive, covered in scorch marks and missing a few corners. The second item was a planchette. Moments later, something in the dryer started moving. It sounded almost.. alive. Thumping and scratching noises were rapidly coming from in there. I’m far beyond thinking there are just rats down here now.

I backed away from the machines. The dryer door was slowly pushing itself open. The smell grew much worse at that moment. I couldn’t see anything in the machine. I picked up the planchette and held it to my eye, pointing it towards the event. The first thing I laid my eyes upon was a wrinkly, slimy hand coming out. It’s skin was grey with the slightest tint of green. It’s fingernails were long and brown, looking very sharp but brittle. It began crawling out of the small door. The joints in its arms popped back into place as it became able to stretch from the cramped space.

That’s when I saw it. That same damn smile. Those same yellow, sharp, chipped teeth that longed to taste me. Blood surrounded the corners of the demon’s mouth. I could see it’s intentions through it’s evil, black eyes. It wanted to make me it’s prey. It wailed as it struggled to release the rest of itself from that tight container. I ran for the stairs. As I tripped on the steps, my phone slipped from my hand. It tumbled down to the bottom of the steps. The flashlight shone towards the ceiling. The creature crawled over it, shaking and trembling as it’s frail limbs moved. It was laughing at me. It moved with speed, as it’s hunger overrode it’s weak, rickety body.

I had to find my mom. There was only one place left that she could be hidden: the attic. Her legs are weak but it’s possible that she could’ve climbed the steep stairs to flee. I had to find my way there, even if I no longer had a light. I hustled to find another source of light. I slipped on the puddle in the kitchen, landing on the broken dishes. The shards sliced my leg, leaving fragments in the cut. I grabbed one of the kitchen knives from the floor and stood up. As I turned on the kitchen lights, I peered back down the hall and saw that thing creeping up the top of the basement stairs.

I needed to get upstairs no matter what. I pulled the two remaining pieces of glass from my leg and the wound began leaking blood down my leg. I limped towards the steps and climbed them as fast as my injured leg could take me. I felt the wall until I found the light switch. I looked back down and saw the creature licking my blood off of the floor with its long, pointed tongue. It’s expression was now filled with lust as it saw me witness it’s snack.

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I felt something hit my arm. It was blood leaking from the ceiling above. “Fuck!” I made my way for the attic stairs, disregarding my injury and it’s pain. “Mom are you in here?” “Mom?” I turned on the attic light switch. An extensive trail of more blood led to a large box by the window. I approached it, with the bottoms of my feet now completely soaked by the unavoidable red puddle. It contained a body.

It was skinless and folded to fit into the box. Chunks of flesh were missing. The creature had made a meal of the body. It’s limbs were broken and twisted, protruding the corpse’s meat where they were forcedly mashed to fit. It’s jaw hung off on one side of it’s crooked head, and one blue eye was drooping out of it’s socket. This had to be my mom.

I dropped my knife. I was panic-stricken. The sounds of slow thumping, and sudden shifting between maniacal laughter and shrieking came from the stairs. The monster knew it had me cornered and felt immense joy in my despair and helplessness. It was savoring the moment. I had to escape before it was too late because if didn’t get out of here now, I’d meet the same fate as my mother. After that macabre sight, I knew putting up a fight wasn’t an option.

I grabbed a heavy box and tossed it through the window. The glass shattered and I screamed for help. The demonic hag was now in the attic with me, hastening towards me on all fours. In that moment, panic and impulsivity had taken over me. I leapt through the window. I felt my already injured leg snap as I landed. The adrenaline made it almost painless in the moment. “Please help! Help me!”. The planchette was now cracked and smeared with blood, but I could see that thing staring at me through the broken window, frowning this time. It wore a look of defeat.

The neighbors came to my aid. “Help is coming! Are you okay? What happened?”
Two police cars and an ambulance arrived less than ten minutes later. The paramedics rushed me to a hospital room after seeing me covered in blood and incapable of walking. The police questioned me there. I told them everything that happened in complete detail. They explained to me that there was no evidence of a monstrous woman intruding the property. The only evidence they found were the broken dishes, her blood-stained clothes by the washer, and the mutilated body of my mom with the knife that I dropped next to her, in her blood.

Less than one month later, I was found guilty for the murder of my mother. My fingerprints were found on the knife that was left next to her body. I, as well as the knife, were covered in her blood. There was no sign of forced entry, or anyone else being in the building that night. There was too much evidence against me, staining my innocence. They conspired me to be a mentally insane murderer. I was then placed into a mental hospital for the rest of my days to rot away. I still hear the same sounds of cackling and wailing coming from the drains when I shower.

Credit : Bean Booney

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