I want to see a ghost. Just once, but a good one. The sort of ghost encounter with enough meat that I’ll be able to sink my teeth in, metaphorically speaking, for the rest of my life.
I saw one once, I think, but it wasn’t enough. A small black shape, cat-sized. It followed my friends and me out of a graveyard.
But it’s not much proof. Cat-sized? Well, must’ve been a cat, people say. I know it wasn’t a cat, but I don’t know what it was. I want a ghost without doubt, without question. Is that even possible? Can there be no questions? Maybe once wouldn’t be enough data. Maybe I’d want a second sighting.
We call what I saw in the graveyard the Demon Bunny. It was neither, but that’s the the moniker that stuck. I have never been as scared as I was the night I saw the Demon Bunny.
After the sighting we went to the Applebee’s, the least-spooky place ever. I drank a virgin strawberry daquiri and obsessed over the events with my boyfriend and his brother. My boyfriend had only seen it initially, hadn’t seen it follow us after we ran away, but he hadn’t been wearing his glasses. His brother Andy had seen it follow, but only I had seen it drift over a headstone.
The drifting is my key to the whole thing. Without it, people can maintain that it was a fox or a squirrel or a non-demon bunny. With it, all they’ve got is “plastic bag” and even with a strong wind, plastic bags don’t follow people. Also, they’re not usually solid, inky black.
It moved like flowing water, Andy and I agreed. It came from the back of the cemetery, the shrine section, revealing itself when we stepped from the paved path onto the gravel. That’s all we’ve got.
Well, not quite. I’ve also got the terror I felt that night. I was sure it knew me now, could find me, sure it was evil, sure it was unnatural and one of many such things and not even the worst of the evil things in its class. Sure that it didn’t like being disturbed by some teenagers just trying to entertain themselves in what they thought was the dullest town on Earth.
The next day, my fear was beaten back by daylight and my curiosity. I made sketches of what we saw, so that time would not fade and warp my memories. We went back with a video camera a couple days later and recorded nothing, saw nothing. Time dulled the terror.
But that night, I knew what I saw, and it wasn’t a cat, and it wasn’t a bag.
I cling to agnosticism above atheism, and one of the threads upon which I cling is the story of the Demon Bunny. I trust my eyes, my senses, my feelings. I trust the drawings. Is this ridiculous? It’s almost all I’ve got. That’s why I want more, just one more really good one.
Or maybe I don’t. Maybe, if the Demon Bunny gave me bunny-level fear, I don’t want a larger size. It is daylight as I type this, and I don’t believe those words. Of course I want to see a ghost! I’m not scared! Come on! But the darkness may change my mind.
Here’s the thing, though—is there any spirit large enough that its associated fear would be bigger than my fear of death as the end of everything? I doubt it. So, ghosts, come on out. I’d appreciate it.