My story begins around late August, when five friends and I moved into a large old rental house across from our campus. It was perfect, like an undergraduate funhouse. Spacious, cheap, interesting, great for hosting the usual slew of college parties, six bedrooms so that we each got our own space. The layout of the house is four stories; there's a basement (which is extremely creepy), a second floor with four bedrooms (all of the girls, including myself, are on this floor), and an upstairs that looks like it was a former servants quarters (two guys stay up here). Needless to say, this place is pretty dated. It's at least turn of the century, but my dad thinks more mid 1800s. Our living room doesn't even have light fixtures and there's no garbage disposal in the sink, but previous owners put in some updates. The security system_ which is the focal point of this story_ was one of these modern conveniences. The security system not only tells us if the door gets broken down; whenever anyone opens the front or the back door, an automated voice will say "Front/ Back door Open." We go to college in a city that is pretty rough, and our living area is right on the fringes of the ghetto. We've all heard gunshots one time or another from campus, and cars get broken into frequently. This system let\'s us all feel a little more at ease in our daily routines.
It's funny how something that should give you peace of mind can do quite the opposite.
Fast forward to about a month ago. It was Christmas break, and only one other roommate (I'll call him Mike) and myself were in town. The night "the occurrence" happened was somewhere between Christmas day and New Year's. I'd been working a lot of evening shifts at a nursing home in town (see other story), so I didn't see home until 10 pm a lot of the time. I don't like being alone at this place much at night. Still don't. That being said, I was spending a lot of post-work time at a friend's apartment to avoid being creeped out for hours by myself. On this night, I didn't have work and it was early evening, so I was messing around down stairs, cooking and listening to loud music. That's when I got the little gut feeling. I get it here and there_ even to this day_ when I'm by myself downstairs at night. It's a feeling that someone's watching, but more than that. If I could really and honestly sum it up, it's like you're a kid and a parent is telling you to go to your room. Not mean. Not scary. Not threatening. However, it's very commanding and eerie. Territorial even. It doesn't like me being downstairs in its space. There's been several nights where I'm laughing at something stupid on reddit, and the feeling sets in so jarringly that I just close my computer and walk upstairs. I generally try to reason it as vestigial animal fear at aloneness; just a natural reaction to being by oneself at night, but deep down I get the feeling there's more to it.
This night, I decided to be bold and chastise "it" as an experiment. I was messing in the living room when I started to feel uneasy so I called out, "Look, I know you don't like me down here. I'm leaving in a bit though, so if you could not breathe down my neck, that'd be cool. Leave me alone for now, and you'll get the place to yourself here in a few hours." Right after I said this, I got a really tight feeling in my chest and a strange sensation hit me. Like being light headed and floaty feeling and breathing became slightly harder. I tried to ignore it but it was strange and my friends were gathering early so I left soon after.
Several hours pass, and I walk home. I won't omit the fact that I'd been drinking. As a young adult in college, a lot of those break nights were nights I'd spent out on the town or having kickbacks with friends. I was not on drugs though. Nothing that could cause me to hallucinate. I wasn't fall down-puking intoxicated either. I was still able to get home and do my bedtime routine before I laid down in bed. As I was trying to fall asleep, I was flitting through my groggy thoughts and listening to the old house's sounds... Sounds that I was already pretty familiar with at this time. That's when I heard something that was familiar but entirely out of place: the foot steps of someone walking around downstairs with a dog. One of the housemates has a dog, so I know what it sounds like when they're downstairs. She and the dog were in her hometown at the time, however, and she later concurred that she hadn't been back to the house since she left for break. As I laid listening to the footfalls and clicking paw-nail sounds, I thought to myself "I'm too drunk and tired to even care about these stupid ghosts right now" and continued to try to fall asleep.
This is not where the story ends. Thirty minutes later, I'm still awake but the sounds have stopped. Suddenly, I hear "front door open" and someone hastily opening and slamming the front door. They run through the house like they're in a hurry, pause for a moment as if grabbing something, and then run out the back door and slam it as well. At this point, I'm thinking "Mike, WTF are you doing?" As I laid there waiting for him to come back in, the wait became longer than I expect. A few minutes turned into around 30-45 minutes before I heard "back door open" and Mike walking calmly up the stairs to the second floor and then up the flight that leads to the third floor.
The next morning, one of my other housemates had come home, so I decided to tell her and Mike about the weird walking/ dog paw-nail sounds downstairs. This is where it gets real weird real quick. Remembering how I had heard Mike come to the house twice, I asked him about it. He looked at me blankly and asked what I meant. I asked him why he came to the house, sprinted through, then promptly left out the back door and came back 30 minutes later. With the most confused expression, he tells me that he only came home once and went up the stairs straight to bed. Wondering if it were an intruder and we'd left the doors open, I asked him if both the doors had been locked when he came home. They had been. At this point, we're left in silence. None of us really knew what to say. I tell the other housemates later on, but I think most of them wrote me off as being jumpy/ too drunk/ irrational. I will say this: I didn't imagine it. I wasn't asleep. I've had sleep paralysis, and I know those weird in-between states of consciousness and being asleep. I was fully awake. Groggy and drunk, but alcohol doesn't make you hear things; I've been drinking long enough to know this. I even felt the tremors when whoever_ or whatever_ ran through the house and slammed the doors.
We've had other things happen in the house, but this is the one that sticks out the most. The ghost has become a bit of a running joke, which is how it got the name "the seventh housemate." We often like to complain that "it" will need to pay rent too if it wants to stay here. If any of you have any comments on this, I wouldn't mind. There's not much to do about it. Whatever this is generally doesn't bother us and I've decided against any blessings in case that might rattle its cage. I've got too much on my plate to deal with an angry ghost. It doesn't feel malevolent or dangerous, but it is definitely assertive and no-nonsense. Part of me wants to investigate it, but I'm hesitant that I'll wake a sleeping giant.