It's daylight outside so I can finally relate this next experience. Honestly, I don't like thinking about it because it gives me chills... Serious chills... Every time I think about it.
Joe (my ex-husband) and I had moved back to Salisbury, NC at that point and were visiting his family for Christmas that year. His family lived 4 hours away in the Eastern part of the state... A very rural area. The road they lived on, well... You can stand out in the field across the road from his parents house and as far as you could see, it was all family land. About 90% of everyone who lived on that road were family. The "homestead" was the home of his paternal great-grandparents and was located across the road from Joe's parents house and to the left a little bit. It sat back off the road a little ways. This house was 2 storied and was dilapidated pretty much... Even though there were still furnishings in there, nobody ever ventured inside unless it was on a dare.
The reason for this was because one of his family members... I can't remember if it was his great-grandfather or one of his great-uncles...but he shot himself in the head (suicide) on the second floor. Joe would tell me stories about weird things going on in that house and other family members would listen in and corroborate that they did happen... Things like a lantern or some other type of light shining from a window on the second floor when the home had been empty/abandoned for many years. Another incident that happened was that one of Joe's younger cousins decided to go into the house with 2 other cousins. They were looking for something of value that they could sell for a little bit of money. They got in through one of the windows, crawled inside and went snooping around. They were shining their flashlights around looking for something and speaking in low tones when they heard something loud and bumpy coming down the stairs. With hearts in their throats, they shined the lights on the stairs and saw that a sack of potatoes had been tossed down the stairs! The first odd thing is that why would a sack of potatoes be in a house that had been abandoned for YEARS...second, why on the 2nd floor... And third, how did it get tossed down the stairs? Needless to say, the boys abandoned their quest and hauled buggy and never went back.
The family cemetery was located back behind the homestead a ways and to the left... Coming from the road, you had to turn into a dirt driveway before you get to the homestead and drive wayyy back... It was best to take a 4 wheel drive so you wouldn't get stuck, as it was really bumpy and the road wasn't kind to cars. There were reports of strange lights in the family cemetery and in particular, one light that would race you to the cemetery!
When coming to this family road from town in the very small and rural town, you turned off from the main road in center of town. Once you took that left turn, you went down about 3 miles or so then you'd turn right onto the family road. Family lore told it that at certain times of late night, when you turned onto the family road there would be a white light there. It would race you down the road, keeping pace with you... No matter how fast or slow you went... It would keep pace with you and once you reached the family cemetery it would disappear. Nobody knew "who" it was supposed to be if it was a spirit... But the white light was an odd occurrence and odder still that it always disappeared into the family cemetery.
Now to the part that scared me so badly...
Directly across the road from Joe's parents house was a large and thick area of woods. The trees started at the edge of the road where the ditch was and went who knows how far deep... But they went way back. To the left and sitting back a ways from the road was the old homestead that everyone believed to be haunted. These woods were thick... In other words, there was no way a human being could walk in the woods unless there had been a path cut out. Not even a very thin person... They were that thick.
It was Christmas Eve and about 2am and Joe and I had just arrived at his parents house. We had a trunk load of stuff to empty... Gifts and suitcase/bags and of course our two dogs were with us. I hooked up the dogs (leashes) and took them to the front yard to potty. I took them close to the ditch next to the road so that there weren't piles of poop close to the porch for anyone to potentially step in. The weather was mild for this Christmas Eve so I let the dogs linger when they were done with their business. As I said, the weather was mild. It wasn't overly cold, no wind was blowing, no snow, no rain... It was really nice. Also note that since that is a very rural area, it was quite dark outside and the only light source was from the porch light and lights of the car.
So...I'm out front with the dogs and was just going over things in my mind when suddenly it got VERY cold. Also suddenly was a wind that came up and something odd happened in the trees. Straight across from us the tree tops started swinging and swaying. Have you ever seen a squirrel jump from tree to tree and watch as the tree top swings and sways from the jumping motion of the squirrel? Well, it was like that... As if something was jumping from treetop to treetop. However, there was not a slight movement in the trees, it was an extreme movement... As if someone or something heavy was jumping and swinging from tree to tree. It was very noisy (rustling sounds) and all of this happened all at once... The wind, the coldness, the movements and the rustling sounds. To say it was "odd" was an understatement.
At the same time that this happened, T-Bone had been sniffing the ground and was facing me which meant his back was to the road. When everything happened at once, T-Bone jumped and did a 180 and was staring at the woods. Prissy also looked up and both of them started growling... The low and menacing kind of growl. This is totally out of character for my dogs as T-Bone was extremely gentle and would not even hurt a bug, lol. Prissy was not as gentle as T-Bone however she knew family and was not threatened at all until the woods started rustling. As I took all of this in, a very short amount of time passed... As in, seconds. It all happened so suddenly and very quickly. As my dogs started to growl, a cold shiver danced its way up my spine and I became very afraid. Suddenly I just KNEW... Without a doubt... That whatever was happening in the woods directly across from us was just...bad...evil...and we needed to get the hell out of there!
I hauled buggy for the front door and halfway dragged my dogs inside because they were still trying to growl and bark at the woods and didn't want to leave... They wanted to confront it but no way in hell was I going to allow it! Joe was already inside and as soon as I got the dogs inside I slammed the front door and locked it. He and his family were in the kitchen/dining room and I was shaking so badly and trying not to cry... The dogs were still agitated and Joe started asking me what was wrong... As I was standing there trying to explain, we all heard a car pull up in the driveway. I went to the front door, opened it and looked outside and saw Joe's youngest brother (Billy) and his wife getting out of the car. I opened the door and yelled, "Billy! Y'all get in here FAST, there's something evil in the woods!" They came inside and I was telling them what happened... Billy was all into that because he is also into the paranormal but way more than I am, lol.
Everything was fine that night, the holiday passed without further events but... I made sure that I took the dogs out to a different area, at different times, didn't dally around or else I had Joe to take them out, lol. I don't know what happened but I do know that whatever was there was evil.
There was a lot of speculation about what it was or what it could have been. Several members in Joe's family had died with mystery, as there were a few suicides in his family. Also the fact that the woods were right next to the haunted family homestead and no doubt the woods also backed up to the haunted family cemetery. I had talked to Joe about contacting a reputable ghost-hunting team in Raleigh to come check things out and he said I should do it... They were actually very interested and wanted to come and investigate. However, after speaking to his parents about it they said we'd have to get permission from his dads cousin, who owned the homestead. She refused to give permission and we have no idea as to why... So that was that.