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Copper Chimes

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As a child I always loved the gentle music of chimes in the wind. Being from a rather windy area, they always reminded me of home; however, the only feeling I get from that sound is now dread. I guess I should start from the beginning.

I was born and raised in Palmdale California, if it is known for anything it is its wind. Every day the wind howls, with the occasional light breeze. Over the years there, my mother collected wind chimes, and I started getting a couple as a child. She would hang them over out back patio with care, we would sit and enjoy a nice summer wind listening to the tunes that the chimes would make, and drink ice teas. It was most certainly a pleasant experience.

At the age of 17, I moved from there to Phoenix AZ. It is a nice enough city, but certainly not a windy place. Aside from the occasional dust storm, no wind really blows with as much force as I was used to. My mom and I decided to hang our wind chimes anyway, figuring that we’d get the occasional wind that would make pleasant music. One day we decided to go to an arts and crafts show and see what was made by the locals.

There we came across a beautiful copper and turquoise set of chimes my mom absolutely fell in love with. We grabbed them and went to the vendor of that stall. The sweet old lady was confused when be brought the item forward as she did not remember making the chimes. This was peculiar because she made all the chimes in her stall. “My age must be catching up with my mind”, she concluded “that will be ten dollars”. I paid her and we went on our way.

When we went home, I hung the wind chimes in the back yard and there just so happened to be a pleasant summer breeze blowing, so we sat down, drank iced tea, and listened as the chimes made a pleasant tinkling sound. We watched the chimes twirl in the wind as if they were dancing along. It was a thing of beauty indeed. A week later, when sitting outside one evening, we heard that set of chimes, and only that set of chimes, tinkle softly. We remarked at that curiously. We attributed it to the location of where they hung in comparison to the other chimes. What we hadn’t realized till after the fact was that there was no wind either.

One month later while watching T.V. we suddenly heard those specific chimes tinkling as if there were a steady breeze outside. So with that peculiarity I decided to move the chimes and they stopped as I grabbed them. As I placed a different set where the copper chimes once hung, no movement other than the residual of me hanging them occurred.

“That is bizarre,” I silently thought to myself.

I went to bed pondering the conundrum that night. The chimes became a curiosity that we would show to our friends, whenever they would visit us. When our friends were asked what they thought, we would get a wide variety of answers, ranging from “perhaps they are just more receptive to minute breezes” to the outlandish jokes of “Ghosts” followed by an elongated and wavering “boo.”

We didn’t notice anything bizarre for the next couple weeks due to dust storms and rainstorms which are common for the monsoon season in the Phoenix area. Following that though the chimes would move stronger though it was as if they were reacting to a strong wind nothing to be startled by but definitely noticeable.

I would even remark “this is kind of like Palmdale huh” my mom would chuckle and say yes. As I was sitting outside reading during a rather nice fall evening, the chimes were tinkling as we have grown accustomed to; I thought I caught a glimpse of something out of the corner of my eye. When I turned to look it was nothing. “Maybe my eyes are tired from reading” I said to myself.

Despite the bizarre occurrences with those chimes, I felt strangely attached to them. So when I moved out of my mom’s house and on my own I brought those chimes along with a couple of other ones with me. I moved into a small studio apartment with a balcony, where I decided I was going to hang the chimes. The night I moved in, when everything was still in boxes aside from my mattress and a couple pieces of furniture, I could have sworn I heard the chimes ringing; I thought I was just dreaming. The next day I hung everything up, and put everything into its appropriate place. I hung all my chimes out on the balcony, even though due to the position of the building I wouldn’t be getting much wind.

The next night the chimes were lurching violently like a gale force wind was blowing. I took those chimes down for the night to get some sleep. I hung them up the next day and the center string swung as I was hanging them. I saw a creature in the distance, only for a split second but definitely saw something. I couldn’t exactly describe what I saw at that point in time.

The next day I had gotten somewhat of a breeze and with the movement of the chimes the air seemed to morph around them almost to the point of blurring light but I got a better sight of the creature. It was a copper colored being that was almost canine in shape but covered in feathers and had turquoise colored eyes. The creature had both an alluring and menacing look about it. I became curious as to what it was.

The creature had an obvious tie to the wind chimes but I did not know exactly its connection was. The next couple days were windless, and the chime rang as per usual but no glimpses of the creature. I decided to test a theory and I moved the center string vigorously back and forth using my hand and looked through past the chimes and then I saw the creature. No sooner than I saw it, I stopped the string. “Ah ha!” I exclaimed “so whenever an outside force makes them chime the creature comes” realizing that I moved the chimes indoors. That was the single biggest mistake I had ever made.

A couple nights after moving them indoors I had mistakenly left the fan on. As they chimed by themselves normally nothing seemed amiss. I awoke to a massive weight upon my chest looking up I saw it the creature right in my face. I tried to scream but the weight was too much. I squirmed to release myself from the creature; its turquoise eyes seemed to look at me with pleasure watching me struggle for life. Once I freed myself, I ran for the door to my bedroom with the creature right behind me.

As I ran out the door past the kitchen, I grabbed a knife and ran to the chimes. Grabbing a hold of the center string and pressing the knife against it, I saw the monster lurch at me in desperation. I cut the string then with a high pitch squeal of pain the creature seemed to dissolve from existence. No sooner that the creature was gone, than I grabbed all of my wind chimes, and took them to the dumpster. I have no idea what that monster really was, nor do I know where the true origin of those chimes were, but I will never buy another set of wind chimes again.

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