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Skull Scare


This took place in the mid-80s when I was eleven or twelve. My mom was an art teacher back then, and my best friend's mom was an artist, so there were a lot of "artsy" things floating around our two households: cracked pottery, sculptures, fancy drapes, costume jewelry, you name it... But the one that took the cake was a real human skull that my friend's mom used for a sketching model. How she came to own it is unclear to me. I do know that it wasn't a deceased family member.

The first incident took place on an extremely cold evening in January. My friend invited several of us over to her place to hang out. The reason I mention the cold is because she had dark thermal drapes in her room; the drapes kept out the chill, but they also blocked out streetlights, headlights and whatever natural light was left that day. We decided not to turn on the inside lights and lit a couple of candles instead.

After playing a few rounds of cards, one of us had the bright idea that we should try to summon spirits. We had no idea what we were doing but we wanted to make it a glamorous affair by decorating my friend's dresser with "offerings". The dresser had a huge trifold mirror on top. We draped some sparkly necklaces and scarves around the mirror, put some jewelry boxes in front of it, set the candles in front of the mirror, spread out our deck of cards, and - you guessed it - placed the skull in the middle of this arrangement. Then we huddled on my friend's bed and waited.

None of us knew how to summon spirits, so we just sat there waiting for something to happen. I had some misgivings about using the skull, but went along with the scheme thinking that it was harmless enough. Since I was a little scared, I didn't look at the dresser, but focused my attention on the dark corner shielded from all light by a huge old-fashioned wardrobe. The corner was very dark. Suddenly a faint circular light appeared there and started to grow. Strangely enough it did not scare me; I just sat there and watched it get bigger. It felt like a long time, but I doubt that this lasted longer than a few seconds. Suddenly, the bedroom door flew open and my friend's three-year-old brother burst into the room banging pot lids together and offering to fry us an egg. The light from the hallway poured into the dark bedroom and the faint circle of light disappeared.

I asked my friends later if any of them saw anything. They said they didn't. But they were looking at the dresser and the mirror. I was the only one who was too scared to look at our centerpiece! I tried to convince myself afterwards that what I saw was perfectly "natural". Perhaps it was a ray of light that preceded the opening of the bedroom door, I argued. Unfortunately no explanation seemed completely adequate - light from the door would have started as a linear streak, not a circle. Maybe darkness messed with my vision, but then again, perhaps we were all saved from a massive scare (or worse) by a three-year-old chef!

The following fall, my mom borrowed the skull for sketching. For a few weeks it sat in the middle of our fancy dining room table (the kind that only gets used at Christmas). As I didn't have to see the skull at night, I wasn't particularly scared of it, but generally preferred to steer clear. Several weeks into the skull's temporary residency my mom called me into the dining room and asked me to bring a duffle bag. She seemed very concerned about something. When I arrived with the bag, she loaded the skull into the bag, told me not to touch the skull and asked me to take it back to my friend's house as soon as possible. I was really spooked at that point and ran rather quickly to my friend's place.

When I got back, my mom breathed a sigh of relief and told me that she thought the skull had really bad energy. A few weeks later she explained that after she brought the skull home, all kinds of little things started going wrong - nothing really serious, just annoying little things. She didn't elaborate, but said that as soon as the skull left, everything went back to normal.

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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, Cornflower, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

Cornflower (2 stories) (3 posts)
2 years ago (2022-04-18)
No, unfortunately I have no further information about the skull. It was acquired for sketching, so I don't think she had it for very long. It definitely was not an heirloom. I tend to trust gut feelings as well. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts.
Rachel9997 (4 stories) (27 posts)
2 years ago (2022-04-15)
Hi Cornflower,

I've found that gut feelings are often right in these situations, so I would trust it. It is strange though that your friend's mom never had an issue with it. Do you know anything else about the skull that might be helpful?
Cornflower (2 stories) (3 posts)
2 years ago (2022-04-14)
Thank you for reading my story.

My gut feeling is that there was always something about that skull, even before the seance. I don't have any evidence one way or the other, but it felt like that energy was always there. The funny thing is that we asked my friend's mom about it later and she said that she never felt or experienced anything, either before or after.
Rajine (14 stories) (772 posts)
2 years ago (2022-04-11)
Hi Cornflower

I think what's really creepy is that someone would keep a real skull, do you think that whatever your mum experienced might have been caused because of you and your friends seance type thing?
GhostGal10001 (2 stories) (2 posts)
2 years ago (2022-04-10)
Hi Cornflower,

That's an interesting story. People would, could and still can acquire real human bones. I've seen some that you can purchase from curiosity shops or private collections that were originally used for anatomy purposes in science classes or used in demonstrations for particular medical equipment and such. And for whatever reasons, they eventually stop using them and they get sold off. So, maybe that's how the skull came into her possession?
I would imagine that it could definitely have some type of attachment to it, especially by the person it belonged to. Maybe he/she couldn't 'Rest In Peace' with his skull out there and not with his body? Who knows. I do know that I wouldn't want to have any human remains that weren't my family in my home for that reason.

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