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I worked as a paranormal investigator, and every case always led me to a different location. The work was interesting enough and there was always a different tale I learned about each time. It was not only a nice perk of the job, but it was the main reason why I did it. I started the job after being an anthropology student for several years before then and I grew accustomed to studying folklore, history, and everything else that came with that.
More importantly though, I became so fascinated with the darkest corners of the societies and groups of people I learned about. There was no shortage of ghost stories, folk tales of ancient demons and creatures, or otherwise morbid tales. I eventually became so fascinated with this particular element of my work, that I began to specialize in it exclusively.
I started to learn more and more about paranormal investigation, before finally taking up the mantle up myself and I was ready to face this new life for the first time. I’ve since gone through dozens of supposedly haunted locations and I’ve done a variety of interviews on every weird piece of lore you could ever think of in these places. Despite this, I have always been a skeptical person and while I’ve stayed curious, I have never been fully convinced.
Then I started this case after reading about it online and seeing the pictures of it. The pictures showed a five story building, similar to a single apartment building, in the midst of a large forest clearing. Hundreds of fully grown trees stretched for miles in three different directions and the ocean shoreline sat directly behind the place. The only other piece of civilization that I could see in those pictures, was the harbor on the ocean shore and the nearby railroad.
The descriptions showed that the residents relied on both the harbor and the railroad for work, as well as food. So they didn’t have to leave the area at all, if they didn’t want to. This was all fascinating on its own, but I was more concerned about some of the local tales about one particular room inside. Some of the residents had reported hearing voices coming from inside, even though the room was entirely vacant. It tended to stay that way, even though there was no door to the room. There was no furniture, carpet, or wallpaper. The only thing about the room that stuck out, was the painting on the back wall. It depicted a person, maybe a man, in a hooded robe. The hood was completely covering the face so I couldn’t see who the figure was and their arms were stretched out, like somebody ready to embrace another person. The most peculiar quality of the figure though, was what was on the robe itself. It looked like every inch of the thing was covered in faces of various people. I had no idea who any of them were or why the robe looked like that, but they had expressions of horror or pain.
Nothing online said anything about what the voices could be saying. They were too quiet, like mere mumbles, but it was like they were repeating the same phrase over and over again. It was believed to be possible evidence of the paranormal and the facility had existed since the late 1800’s. An entire generation of people had obviously passed away and what was left had been passed down to the younger ones.
I had found enough reason in all of this to consider taking a visit there. I had only two goals in mind in doing so too: I wanted to uncover more information about this strange place and I wanted to get some evidence of paranormal activity, if there was any. So I contacted the people living there and requested a visit. I wanted to stay there in one of their vacant rooms for a short time until I could finish the job. Thankfully they said yes and I booked a flight there later on.
I spent the first night there getting settled in and I started asking around about the place the next morning. My questioning mostly focused on that room, with the painting on the back wall. I wanted to know about the origins of the room, its relevance to the local history, and its connection to the occasionally heard, unknown voices.
What I found was that the painting, along with the room, had existed ever since the building’s construction. A local artist had done the painting back when the place was first built and the residents there believed the painting was supposed to represent an angel. They said that the angel was guarding some other world in the painting, but nobody knew what that world was or why it needed to be guarded in the first place.
I thought if the stories about the voices being heard from the room, were true then I would be able to find a connection. I hoped I could capture some of this on footage. So I setup four cameras on each corner of the room, facing each other. Each camera had audio, as well as high quality video, and I made sure to check the footage every twenty-four hours.
The first few days there was nothing noteworthy about the footage. There were no visual implications of anything abnormal and there were no strange voices. Only the silence and the still image of the painted, hooded figure remained. So I waited longer and I spent my time among the residents.
I remember another conversation I had with somebody in the cafeteria and the thing they told me. They said they heard about the work I had been doing and they were glad I was there. It wasn’t just an appreciation for me sniffing out some old ghosts either, I don’t think. I was getting the idea that they were suggesting something more. They said they had a feeling that something like those strange voices, were going to happen at some point. I asked them why they said that and they said it was all a part of the place, the legends. There was always something going around between the more religious or superstitious residents about how they thought something big was about to happen. Something as big as doomsday itself. That was another element to the local lore that had been going around for years, but she swore it had gotten more pronounced in recent times.
Of course this “prophecy”, if you can even call it that, was vague. It was slightly helpful to my research though, no matter the shortcomings. After a few more days of waiting I noticed something on the footage, from the four cameras. There were human voices this time. They were quiet, but they were there. They were incoherent but it sounded like they were repeating something over and over again. The sounds were so similar to the descriptions that I had seen before. I had no doubt this was the evidence I needed and I set out to edit the audio, to make it more clear.
What I found was the voices were in fact saying one phrase in particular. The phrase went like “We’re coming back.” It was like a crowd of unknown people were saying it together, in unison, repeating it like a chant. I had edited the audio so well, that it was so obvious and so crisp. The first time I heard it I felt both a smile sweep across my face and a tinge of fear go up my spine. I had no doubts that I had found something big, something worthy of sharing to the rest of the world, and I was about to finish my job there. I figured I could go back home, knowing that I had everything I needed.
It was in the evening when I finished the editing of the audio and I got ready for bed sometime later. It wasn’t long before I drifted off to sleep, but I was awoken by something that made my heart race and I jumped out of my bed. It was the sound of a thousand voices screaming. They were coming from everywhere: the neighboring rooms, the other floors above, and just outside in the hall. I swore the screams were like the sounds of people staring death in the face. All the screams were like that too, every single one of them. The screams were so loud, it almost drowned out something else I noticed. There were other voices beneath all the screaming and they sounded different somehow. They were laughing and chanting something.
My eyes went wide, my blood chilled, and my stomach was in tight knots. I knew what the voices were saying: “We’re back.” I wish I could say I ran out of that place, escaping into the trees, but I didn’t. I froze in place, stunned by what I was hearing, and my blood curled with absolute terror. My mind raced with thoughts and I struggled with what to do.
Then I realized something. The screams were so close, it sounded like they were already on my floor of the building. I knew they were close by and escaping wasn’t an option. So I pushed whatever objects and furniture I could in front of my door and I sat against it.
I’m still there now and you know what the strange thing is? The screams from my neighbors have stopped but the laughing, chanting voices haven’t. They keep knocking on my door, like they’re trying to taunt me. I know that because they aren’t pushing hard enough to get in. I think I know why too. They said something earlier that bothers me so much now. Something that has made realize the connection of everything I’ve read about this place and what I have been told. What they said outside, is how I know why I’m here now. It was just one statement and all the dots are connected now because of it, even myself. They said:
“The story is finished. The prophecy is fulfilled.”