There are many stories about werewolves or lycanthropy. Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf that could mysteriously talk. An American Werewolf in London. Being Human. All STORIES of talking, walking, hungry wolf-men. But has any one really thought if this is actually a real case? I am here to tell you about 10 interesting and weirdly scary cases of real lycanthropy…
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Long gone are the days when watching a horror film meant I’d be devising an elaborate system to protect myself from monsters later that night. These days, I’m disappointingly hard to frighten. I still love horror films, but I’ve become so accustomed to their scares that most movies don’t even leave me feeling creeped out.
These days, if I really want to get scared, I need to dig a little deeper. I have to find out something about the movie that goes beyond standard scare tactics. And I need to find just enough truth to leave me unsettled as I try to fall asleep at night. Here are four creepy but true tales about some of your favorite horror films.
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A tug on Rhonda Smith’s hair yanked her awake late one night in 2008. Smith, who lives near Springfield, Mo., expected it to be her boyfriend.
“My boyfriend worked at a bar and usually came home around 1:30 to 2 in the morning,” Smith said. “I was sleeping in my room and I thought John was home (and) was pulling my pony tail.”
She then felt John start poking her in the back.
“I told him to cut it out and come to bed,” she said. “It continued to poke me and pull my hair as to wake me to full awake.”
Now alert, Smith turned to tell John to leave her alone and come to bed – but instead found something terrifying.
“I saw a black – and I mean dark black – figure which to me looked like a man for the way it was built,” she said.
The figure just stood next her bed, staring at her.
“It was looking at me, but I don’t remember seeing any face on it,” Smith said. “This really scared me, but in my head I still thought somehow it was my boyfriend.”
The poking topped and Smith brushed off the figure she thought was John and went back to sleep.
“Then I realized John came home after this when he kissed me goodnight,” she said. “I fully woke up again and sat up in bed asking him, ‘weren’t you here a while ago?’”
John shook his head and told her he’d just come home.
“I knew something else had been in my room,” Smith said. “My granddaughter used to live here with her family before this incident, and she came out of her room saying something about a dark man and that she was scared and can’t get to sleep.”
Everyone thought the little girl’s “dark man” was imaginary, even Smith, until that night.
“Now I realize she’d seen something I saw,” Smith said.
Smith’s dog saw it, too. The dog follows Smith around the house, but one day it refused to go into a room.
“Sometime in the same week my dog was at the beginning of the hall and was not going in (the room) and looking up growling,” Smith said.
Smith saw the shadow man again on Jan. 17.
“I was sleeping in my bed with John; it was 2:45 in the morning,” she said. “I was facing the door this time and something bumped me in the nose like a big dog.”
Smith knew it couldn’t be her dog; her dog is small, and she’d locked it in its pen.
“I woke up to see at my bed level a dark image,” she said. “This little image went fast down and popped up to a man size image of the same dark man I’d seen before years back standing there looking at me.”
Smith lay still, trying to form the word “John,” but no sound would come.
“I closed my eyes and opened them to see if it was still there,” she said. “It was gone.”
Too afraid to go back to sleep, Smith got up and went downstairs.
“I thought maybe my house was haunted because other stuff happens around here as well,” she said. “So I had some local group from the Springfield area come out to do a reading.”
Smith wasn’t impressed with the results of the ghost hunting group’s investigation.
“The lady of the group said if it was dark then it was not a good thing,” Smith said. “Well I could have told her that.”
Smith, a Christian who reads from the Bible almost every night, now sleeps with the closet light and television on to keep the shadow man at bay.
“My boyfriend comes home from working nights at the local school as a janitor now and he has gotten slugged by me once because he has startled me when he kisses me at night,” she said. “I want someone else to see this thing, too. I know that sounds mean but why is just coming to bother me and freak me out?”
Three years after the Smithmeyers moved into their newly constructed home in Liberty, Mo., strange occurrences slowly appeared in their lives. After four years of unexplained bumps and slamming doors – things started targeting the children.
A child-sized body hit the bed one morning, rousing Kim Smithmeyer from sleep. She expected one of her twin boys, Dan or Randy, trying to sneak into bed with her. She prepared herself, then snapped up to surprise them, but no one was there.
This wasn’t the only childlike event that crept up on Kim. Small voices have called “Mommy” in the night, although when she checked on her children, they were asleep.
Then things began to talk to the twins.
“Randy has mentioned how come sometimes when Dad isn’t home he’ll hear (Dad) say, ‘hey, fellas,’” she said. “Randy has also said ‘I’m really tired of doors shutting and no one comes through them.’”
Kim is sure her experiences in the house haven’t influenced what her children have told her, because they don’t know what has happened to her.
“I have not talked with my kids about any of the stuff I’ve seen. They’re seven,” she said. “He’s hearing doors shutting. They came down one night and said, ‘can we sleep with you? We’re tired of hearing scratching sounds in our room.’”
Although she hasn’t heard the same slamming doors or scratching sounds the children have heard, Kim said the twin’s room feels different than any other room in the house. And they feel it, too.
One day Dan, who’s been diagnosed with ADHD and anxiety disorder and often acts out in anger, misbehaved and Kim sent him to his room.
“If he doesn’t do something right the first time he gets angry with himself,” she said. “I took a glass of water up there and said, ‘what can we do about your anger?’”
That’s when darkness wiped itself across Kim’s life.
“I’m just tired of the voices telling me to do bad things,” Dan said.
Calmly, Kim asked, “What do you mean?”
Dan looked at his hands.
“Well, I don’t want to say because they’re bad words and they might hurt your feelings,” he said.
“You can tell me anything,” Kim told him. “If it’s bad, you don’t need to deal with it anyway.”
Dan looked at his mother.
“The voices tell me to kill you,” he said.
Kim sat looking at her son, trying not to let Dan know how much these words disturbed her.
“They tell you to kill me?”
“Yes,” he said.
He looked back down.
“To hurt the cats and to do things to my brother,” Dan said.
Kim stood and said she was going to get Daddy. When Mike came to the room, they sat, Dan on Kim’s lap.
“I don’t want to say it,” Dan said abruptly.
“Did someone just say something?” Kim asked.
“Cut the bitch’s head off,” Dan said in a weak voice.
Kim looks back on that moment in horror.
“He said the voices said they killed Jesus,” Kim said. “We don’t watch scary movies. I can’t imagine him saying he wants to kill me.”
They took this normally polite, friendly boy to a psychiatrist the next day. Kim said they’re open to therapy, medication or a paranormal solution – anything to help their son.
Dan spent the next weekend with his grandmother. “He was perfect,” Kim said.
But when Dan came home, bedtime was not so perfect.
“When we brought him home from Mom’s, he was in a great mood, but when we took him to his room his whole demeanor changed,” Kim said. “He just said, ‘can I just sleep with you?’”
“You don’t want to sleep up here?” Kim asked.
“No, I don’t want to sleep up here.”
Kim could see the fear in the boy’s eyes.
“I said, OK.”
As Kim and Mike watched the boys walk down the stairs toward the master bedroom, muffled knocks thudded in the room.
“I heard three knocks from the closet,” Kim said. “I said to my husband, ‘I know you heard that. That was three knocks, Mike. That was from the closet.’”
Mike, who had held the door the entire time, looked at Kim, his face ashen, and shook his head.
“Kim,” he said. “I felt it in the door.”
At this point they decided to do something about whatever lurked in their home.
“I feel like a fool. I talk to the house,” Kim said. “I say, ‘I know something’s here. Please just don’t scare my family leave my children alone.’”
Although Kim and Mike are interested in the paranormal and watch various ghost hunting TV programs, they don’t talk about it with the boys.
“I am intrigued, but I’ve never done Ouija boards or anything,” Kim said. “I just think everything is possible. I think we’re going to keep the boys in our room for a while.”
The 2000s looked promising for Kim and Mike Smithmeyer. Steady jobs at the Ford Motor Company’s Claycomo, Mo., plant, construction of a new house in Liberty, Mo., and the birth of identical twins, Dan and Randy; all by 2003. In 2006 Kim took a buyout from Ford to stay at home with the boys and go back to school.
Then things changed. Something dark came into their lives.
“The first thing was in 2006,” Kim said. “Dan was three. I was just holding him and he was looking at the stairs and said, ‘Mommy, who are the people coming down the stairs?’”
Kim looked, but the stairs were empty.
“Honey, I don’t see them,” she said. “Could you describe them?”
Dan ignored his mother, intently looking at the stairs, moving his head as if he was following something.
“Then he said they were gone,” Kim said.
Although she dismissed this incident as a three-year-old’s imagination, she soon discovered it wasn’t.
“A couple of months later, it was late at night, my family was sleeping and I was going to do laundry,” she said.
She reached toward the laundry room door and the door handle moved.
“I went to grab the laundry room door and the door just literally, like you were opening the door handle, it moved on its own.”
Kim stood before the door, not believing what she’d seen, put the laundry basket on the floor, walked to her bedroom and went to sleep, leaving the dirty laundry until tomorrow.
“I know what I saw and I know I heard it, but I tried to explain it away,” she said. “I just kept trying to dismiss it. I just could not come up with an explanation. I thought I did not see that. I told my husband, and he said, ‘yeah, no.’”
Then things escalated.
“We started hearing the sounds of footsteps above us,” Kim said. “Then it would sound like when our kids would run down the stairs and we’d look, and there would be nothing. The kids would be asleep.”
Kim was asleep one night when something in the house got personal.
“One time I was taking a nap on the couch and I woke up and to what I thought was my husband coming home from work,” she said. “I laid there because I just wanted to sleep. He tucked me in. I felt the tuck in. I (went back to sleep and) woke up 20 minutes later and it was not near the time for him to come home.”
Kim called Mike at work.
“I said, ‘did you come home?’ He said, ‘no.’”
Mike has downplayed the occurrences in the home, Kim said, although they’ve all experienced electrical problems, like a television changing volumes and lights turning on and off.
But his opinion changed with the banging.
“The last four months has been the worst,” Kim said. “Things have kind of changed.”
Kim came home one day in April to find her husband had taken the children to a pizza restaurant.
“I was so excited I was home alone,” she said. “I had taken my clothes off and was going to the bathroom.”
She found she wasn’t alone.
“My bedroom door slammed so hard that I have some knickknacky stuff on top of our armoire and everything shook,” she said. “I thought someone had broken into my house.”
She called Mike to see if he’d come home, but he and the boys were still at the restaurant.
“Someone is in the house and I’m naked,” she told him.
Mike said he would call 911, but Kim had second thoughts.
“I looked out the door and nothing was there, so I locked the door,” she said. She took a rifle out of the closet – a rifle with no ammunition, hoping the cocking noise would scare an intruder.
“I went out and everything was secure. There was nothing in my house – human,” she said. “All my doors were locked, nothing had been disturbed and my cats were sleeping.”
She ran back to the bedroom, locked the door and waited for her husband to come home.
“That’s the first thing that’s been scary to me,” she said.
It wasn’t the last.
The Nine Gates of Hell wasn’t the real name of the crumbling cemetery in Franklin County, Va. Its true name wasn’t posted, and the teens that visited the old yard in the dark of night didn’t care enough to find out.
TJ, of Ft. Worth, Texas, host of The 13 Skulls paranormal podcast, grew up in Virginia and visited the cemetery twice as a teenager.
“I dared not go back a third time,” he said.
The L-shaped cemetery is on the slope of a hill, surrounded by thick trees. At the lowest point of the cemetery sat the house of the caretaker.
“The old man that owned the property would sit out on his porch at night,” TJ said. “He had a shotgun loaded with rock salt and would shoot anyone he noticed in the cemetery that did not have permission to be there.”
The first time TJ visited – during the afternoon – he brought two friends. As they drove toward the caretaker’s house, fear gripped the boys.
“After quite a while of talking he eventually agreed and we were allowed to walk through the cemetery,” TJ said.
However, it wasn’t the meeting with the caretaker that clawed their nerves – it was the cemetery.
“The cemetery was broken into nine separate sections each separated from the other by small iron gates,” he said. “The ground was eroding and sinking around the caskets which made them stick out of the ground at odd angles. Most of the tombstones were either leaning or fallen over. It was like no other cemetery I have ever seen.”
As the boys wandered the cemetery, surrounded by gnarled and leafless trees, they pushed open gate one.
Then they lost their nerve.
“We only went through the first three gates and nothing happened other than a few feelings of being scared, cold and getting goose bumps,” TJ said.
But goose bumps enough they left. When May rolled around, they returned.
“The second time was around 11 p.m.,” TJ said. “After getting permission to be there we went in.”
The cemetery was different at night.
“We walked through the first two gates taking in the overall creepy nature of it all,” he said. “I started to feel like someone was watching me.”
As the boys walked further into the cemetery, their flashlights the only illumination in the moonless night, they heard footsteps in the trees.
“As we approached the third gate I began to hear noises like something was walking in the woods,” he said. “At first I thought it was just an echo, but it continued until we got to the fourth gate. Once we crossed through the gate the noise stopped.”
Silence dropped like a hammer. Moments later, a voice drifted through the cemetery.
“It sounded like someone talking in unintelligible words,” he said. “We could not tell where it was coming from. It seemed as if it was all around us.”
They started moving again. Fourth gate. Fifth gate. Then something screamed.
“It sounded like the mixture of the scream of a small child and what you would think a banshee would sound like,” TJ said. “It was ear piercing and continued sporadically.”
One of TJ’s friends ran back to the car.
“That left two of us to keep looking around,” he said. “We headed to the sixth gate with the screaming continuing as we walked towards the back of the cemetery.”
A deep growling rose into the night as the boys stepped through the sixth gate. As they went into the grounds beyond the seventh gate, the world went deaf.
“We looked at each other not knowing what was going on,” he said. “We figured that if the sounds stopped then we were safe and could keep going.”
When TJ shown his flashlight ahead of him, he knew they weren’t safe. They weren’t safe at all.
“We saw a black figure standing directly in front of us,” he said. “The figure was the darkest black you could imagine, almost like looking into oblivion.”
The boys couldn’t move.
“This black figure was the darkest, most evil looking thing I have ever seen,” TJ said. “We stood there for what seemed like 10 minutes when the dark figure started to move towards us.”
TJ’s friend grabbed his arm and urgently hissed, “we need to leave.”
The words snapped TJ out of his trance and they turn and ran, occasionally chancing a backwards glance only to see the figure getting closer.
“The screaming started again only this time it was louder and seemed to come from many different places,” TJ said. “My heart was beating 120 miles per hour and I kept looking back at the black figure that was now gaining on us and was about 20 feet or so behind us. It was beginning to feel overwhelming, like I was going to pass out.”
When the boys burst from the first gate running toward their car, the screaming stopped and the black figure disappeared.
The caretaker sat on his porch, waiting for them.
“The old man walked off of his porch and yelled to us that now we know why we were to never come back and that we should tell everyone we know to stay away,” TJ said.
They dove into the car and tore away from the cemetery.
“Our friend told us on his way back to the car the old man met him half way and told him that there is evil in this place and that his friends would be lucky to make it back,” TJ said. “He said he just sat in the car trembling, which we all were.”
One night, a female college student went drinking with her friend and ended up staying at her place overnight. It was a room where you could see the lit-up city skyline fairly well, so she was gazing out the window enjoying the view.
Her back to the interior of the room, she suddenly spoke. “Hey, let’s run to the convenience store. I got a craving for some dessert.”
But her friend wasn’t really up to it. “The closest one is a 10-minute walk away,” she complained.
“That’s why I want you to come with me! Not many people pass through here so I’m scared to go alone.” The girl finally convinced her hesitant friend to leave the apartment for the convenience store.
“Hey, that’s not the right way!” the friend cried. The girl was hurrying in the opposite direction.
“When I was looking at the window, I saw something in the reflection,” the girl confessed. “There was a man with a knife under your bed.”
“The Okiku doll has resided at the Mannenji temple in the town of Iwamizawa (Hokkaido prefecture) since 1938. According to the temple, the traditional doll initially had short cropped hair, but over time it has grown to about 25 centimeters (10 in) long, down to the doll’s knees. Although the hair is periodically trimmed, it reportedly keeps growing back.
It is said that the doll was originally purchased in 1918 by a 17-year-old boy named Eikichi Suzuki while visiting Sapporo for a marine exhibition. He bought the doll on Tanuki-koji — Sapporo’s famous shopping street — as a souvenir for his 2-year-old sister, Okiku. The young girl loved the doll and played with it every day, but the following year, she died suddenly of a cold. The family placed the doll in the household altar and prayed to it every day in memory of Okiku.
Some time later, they noticed the hair had started to grow. This was seen as a sign that the girl’s restless spirit had taken refuge in the doll.”
You’ve just got to love Japanese ghost stories — they always pack a delightfully creepy punch. And if you think that illustration is creepy check out a real picture of the okiku doll: