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We Don't Mention Him


For the sake of privacy I have changed all the names in this experience.

My little brother Corey lived for a time on a private bay in the Caribbean Sea. His landlady, MariAnne, had built her home and the adjoining batch of porches and apartments with her husband. She put up with Corey on account of his size and territorial manners, in a neighborhood crawling with disrespectful tourists and drug-addled thieves alike. She was his upstairs neighbor, with her two giant dogs. I loved his little apartment with the gekko lizards and outside the khoki frogs yelling all night. Defying the tropical bugs and spiders, I claimed the couch as mine.

In addition, this sort of neighborhood junkie/ handyman, Joey, came around to do odd jobs or pass out on the property. Anyone who lives in a small town is familiar with this character and the kind well-meaning folks what keep them high/employed. My brother was not his biggest fan. He was a very wiry, short individual with waist length light brown hair and a surfer's wasted swagger. I only ever saw him barefoot and naked chested in khaki cargo shorts, but I was visiting. He was nothing but polite, to me, with a mainland accent.

One night we stayed up very late smoking and watching TeeVee. We had turned off the AC to crack open the door and let in the breeze from the distant storm. Corey had passed out on the couch, so with nowhere to properly sleep, I was sitting in his desk chair, pushing myself back and forth in a very lazy way with my feet, between watching the gekko lit blue by teevee on the ceiling, and looking out the screen door into the distant fluorescence of the patio light, full of island sounds.

Following no pattern at all, I swung myself to look out the front door and saw a beer-bellied figure in a brown terry cloth bathrobe, who turned, and walked toward the stairs to the upper deck.

I cried out, "who's there?" I was irritated at the spying, sure it must be Joey or some lousy trespasser.

Rising, hazed by my shriek, my brother loomed out the screen door and up the stairs. I could hear him on the deck above, then coming back down. He was still shuffling, part sleepy bear.

He asked me what I saw, and when I told him he woke straight the hell up. "Do not open the door or go outside again tonight" he said, very seriously, and clumped, grouchy, off to bed. Having grown up in a rural area with meth heads aplenty, I complied, and locked the door shut.

The next day I mentioned the incident to our other brother, on a different island. I said how it was weird that Corey would be scared of one scrawny tweaker in a ratty bathrobe. He laughed. "Wait, what did you see?"

I told him of the beer-bellied figure in the brown bathrobe moving away from the door. He laughed some more and asked if I had told Corey.

"Well, yeah."

He laughed some more and then actually said to me with a straight face, "Well, if you see it again, don't tell Corey, because we don't talk about the ghost at his house anymore-since we figured out it was MariAnne's husband."

Needless to say, I kept my eyes averted from the screen door or front windows, and avoided the porch as best I could, for the rest of my stay. Jimminy Christmas, but living in the islands changes folks.

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, BettinaMarie, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

BettinaMarie (14 stories) (80 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-26)
BeautInside-you nailed it, Corey was having none of it. I was told to leave it be and not get Corey all agitated. Since we usually razz each other mercilessly, this was the most out of place bit in the whole experience. I don't think MariAnne knew about anything, and that maybe she was very religious.
I think my brothers simply recognized him, with his brown robe and his familiar habits, if they saw him like I did, after he passed. I do not know the story but will ask when I can.
BettinaMarie (14 stories) (80 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-26)
Aporetic-I am told the potbellied old duffer putzed around exclusively in board shorts and the same brown bathrobe for the last few years, which was the only clue I am aware of. He may have disapproved of the smoke or late hour.
Lord knows it would have been a feat for a cat to make it across that deck or stairs without creaking.
BettinaMarie (14 stories) (80 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-26)
Jubeele-I am sure something happened with Corey and the ghost, but my brothers did not tell me. All I saw was a person by the door. I had no reason to think anything else until I described them the next day. There was nothing weird about what I saw.
Maybe they did not want to scare me. I still had a great trip. The dead stand closer than I am used to, in many parts of the Caribbean.
The kokhi frogs were very soothing to me.
Corey does not know that I was told they had "figured out the ghost at Corey's was Marianne's husband". I was also told that a ghost was noone's nevermind but Marianne's, and to not go gabbing around and hurt her rental values.
BettinaMarie (14 stories) (80 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-26)
Twilight-Both my brothers knew and liked Marianne's husband before he passed. I was told to respect Marianne and not mention it.
Let's just say Corey is very jumpy about his own personal space, and he is someone for whom it would be unhealthy to focus on a spirit.
Also, never call McFly a chicken
BeautInside (3 stories) (326 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-25)
Hi BettinaMarie,

I understand that you don't talk about the ghost because your brother might be in denial or he just can't bear the fact that he has a ghost at home, am I right? 😊

Either way, knowing how they found out about the ghost and that it was Annemarie's husband would be a nice story and submission (yes I am inviting you to tell us about it). 😁 😉

Thank you for sharing. ❤
Aporetic (5 stories) (125 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-23)
Greetings, BettinaMarie

I have to wonder whether MariAnne's husband was the jealous type. Perhaps he gave Corey a difficult time, thinking he was the new man of the house now. LOL Whatever happened, it must have been significant enough to scare him into silence.

I'm also curious as to how they figured out it was MariAnne's husband. Pot bellies and terry cloth bathrobes don't go with my image of island life LOL

Thanks for a delightful read. I could almost hear those frogs and gekkos.

Jubeele (26 stories) (897 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-23)
Hi Bettina, did you ever find out if Corey had his own experience with the ghost at his apartment? How did they figure out it was MariAnne's husband? Like Twilight, I wonder what sort of person was he that you weren't supposed to talk about his ghost. 🤔

Your brother's place on a private bay in the Caribbean sounds idyllic. I like how you described the geckos and the noisy frogs - that reminded me of my childhood in SE Asia. Pity you were troubled during your stay. Did you see anything else there after that?
Twilight1011 (9 stories) (320 posts)
6 years ago (2018-09-22)
Did you get anymore details on why exactly no one is suppose to talk about this ghost? 😕 like was he a bad person, or would he do things to people if they acknowledged him in any way? The only thing I saw mentioned on the land lady's husband was that he had helped build the place. Thank you for sharing your experience, and hope to hear back from you soon 😊

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