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The Road Accident

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Tipi

A tipi tent

This is a story I heard a few years ago. I don't remember all of the details, but I shall say what I still remember.

Somewhere in England, there is a boarding school. A few miles away from the school is a summer camp. Since the summer camp is empty for most of the year, the owners of it let the children who go to the boarding school stay there at the weekends. This brings in more money for the company and gives teachers a break from the students. Staff are employed to look after the kids and take them out places during the day.

The area is comprised of a small administration building and a grassy field, within walking distance. The field itself is actually quite big, and has a forest of tall oak trees surrounding it. The owners of this place have made tipi tents which are in one of the corners of the field. The field looks beautiful during the day, but daunting at night.

Everyone was asleep, staff and children alike, apart from one boy. His name was Steven, from what I can recall, and he was twelve years old. He couldn't go to sleep, he closed his eyes and he felt tired, but for some reason, his brain wouldn't drift into a subconscious state. He was awake for hours and, eventually, he glanced at his alarm clock. Steven was shocked to find that it was 3:00 in the morning, quickly opening the tent flap only to see streaks of orange and pink light in the sky. Just before he closed the tent flap something caught his eye. An old woman, who was wearing a dress that looked as if it came from the 17th century. She was quite far in the distance, so Steven had to squint, but he could see that she was carrying something in her right hand. A chill ran down his spine, as he closed the tent flap and tried harder than ever to shut his eyes and fall asleep.

After a few moments, he could hear the sound of cloth being unraveled. The old woman had undone the tent and was now standing no less than a meter away from him. It was now clear to Steven that she was carrying a wooden mallet, one people mostly use for smashing meat. She gently tapped the mallet on one of the other boy's legs (who was still asleep).

Then to the boy next to him. A few boys were tapped on their arms. Steven watched in disbelief of what he was seeing, trying to figure out who this lady was and what she was doing. The boys seemed as if they were unharmed, but he still knew something wasn't right. These thoughts were cut short when her gaze suddenly snapped towards him. One of the most haunting things about her was her gaunt face and how she was scowling at him as if he had done something terrible. Steven was filled with dread as she edged closer to him, too terrified to get away and escape. The old woman then brought the mallet down, through his face.

However, he wasn't harmed. Almost as if the mallet was a hologram and simply passed through him. After doing this, she left the tent. He let out a huge sigh of relief and wiped away the sweat that was dripping from his brow. Sometimes, things like this can drive a person insane, and he had to tell someone. Five minutes later, he brought up enough courage to open the tent flap. The ghostly woman was nowhere to be seen. He put on a warm jacket and ran across to the administration building where most of the staff were sleeping.

After banging on the door a few times, a young, tired looking employee opened the door. "It's four in the morning, what do you want?" she yawned, rubbing her eyes. Steven tried to explain what had happened, but was still in a state of shock. Realizing that something serious had happened, she let him into the building, and asked him what was wrong. He told her what he had seen, and she listened, skeptical at first, but trying to hide her fear by the end. Handing him some paper and a pencil she instructed him to write down exactly what he had told her. Even though she doubted the story, a report had to be written if there was to ever be an incident. Afterwards, he reluctantly went back to his tipi, leaving the employee puzzled and worried.

All the kids had been excited for Sunday to come. They were being driven to a swimming center quite far away from the camp as a special treat. None of them actually got there. The school bus they were being driven in crashed. The children whose arms had been touched received broken arms. The ones whose legs had been touched broke their legs. As for Steven, he died.

The events in this story are true. Steven's report is the only evidence that any of this actually happened. So, if you are ever near Cambridge, and hear this same story about a tipi camping ground, it's wise not to go searching for it, unless you want to meet a similar fate. 

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