Maybe turn all the lights on before anyone reads these stories. Terror can strike at any moment, as these people confronted their worst fears at home, at work, or even with someone close. There are some horrifying people that are out there, looking for their next victim. Content has been edited for clarity.
Mysterious Tracks In The Woods
“I was driving down an old highway during a snow storm. I had a pretty close call on this particular trip. I was heading to the next town over with my girlfriend at the time, and we were behind an SUV on the road. We were behind them for a good while, when they came to a stop. I maneuvered the car around to get a good look at why they stopped. There was a truck in the road, driver and passenger doors open, and two sets of tracks in the snow leading off to the woods. I got out of the car to make sure no one was injured or needed help, but there were no signs of car trouble.
There wasn’t much snow built up on the inside of the car, so the doors hadn’t been left open for long (it was snowing pretty heavy). I started to follow the set of tracks into the woods to check, but stopped. Before I could do much of anything else, the driver of the SUV called me over and let me know that the truck had been reported as stolen. They said highway patrol was on their way, so I went about my business.
A day or so later I found out the owner of the truck was a man who lived nearby that had been missing for over a week. The police went into the woods to look for him, and found his freshly deceased body in a ditch with a single shot to the back of the head. Whoever took him beforehand must have marched him out there, executed him, and just wandered off into the woods. I’m still very glad I didn’t follow those tracks. I didn’t hear the shot, so it must have been right before we all arrived at the truck. I don’t even want to think what would have happened to me if I’d persisted.”
“Once I was working in a restaurant and got done at around midnight. I always rode my bicycle to and from work, it took about 15 minutes to get back home along a bike trail next to the train tracks. This trail was constantly straight but had quite a few exits here and there. It also only had a few small parts of it lit up by street lights, so without my front bicycle light, I would be totally blind for the most part. So this one night I leave to go home after the shift, and I notice a guy is biking behind me, which isn’t too weird at that time of night in a busy (but very safe) city. It was weird that he had no lights and was still there after the first main exits, which after that led to just a small town, but I thought it might just be a coincidence. I felt a bit creeped out and thought I might just be tired and the dark of the night is getting to me. So I decided to bike a bit slower and let this person pass, since there was definitely enough room on this trail. The person started drifting along at the same speed as me and made no attempt to pass or even come closer.
This is about when I’m a few minutes away from home and decide to take some random lefts and rights instead of going straight home, just in case this person was following me and wouldn’t find out where I live. I bike around going in random twists and turns in a suburban neighborhood, and HE’S STILL BEHIND ME.
I decided to turn into one of the houses and hide in the dark shadows from a neighbor’s garage. I heard this person pass the house and brake quickly in that small path. At this moment my blood is boiling. Now I hop on my bike and when I passed the edge of that street, I stopped and stared that person in the eyes. I biked so fast then did another few extra loops here and there until I felt safe and alone again to go home. Never had anything like it afterwards and still don’t know who or why it could have been. I’m happy not knowing.”
The Past Comes Back For Him
“A couple years ago, I was living in Colombo, Sri Lanka at a small hostel on the outskirts of the city. The hostel catered to long-term guests, so I got to know everyone pretty well who lived there. There was a guy living with us, his name was Raj, and Raj was a middle-man of sorts in the casinos. In Sri Lanka, the casinos are incredibly shady places full of Russian mobsters and other low-life criminals from China and India. The casinos are technically illegal, but they continue operation through bribery and government coercion. I went to one of them one time and it was a surreal experience.
Anyway, my friend Raj’s job was to take online bets from Indian clients and make them physically in the casino. He was playing with their money and was simply the vessel to allow individuals to play from another location. He played in some high stakes games and with a lot of money for some powerful people. Basically, a recipe for disaster. One night, he messed up, BIG TIME. One of his clients managed to gain access to his online system and stole all the money that his clients had deposited to play with, a sum well over $50,000 US, which is a fortune in Sri Lanka.
We only found out about the theft after Raj’s disappearance. A note was left in his bed, very cryptic, saying, ‘Don’t look for me. I’m leaving,’ among other things. Dude vanished overnight. We made a police report and waited to hear anything.
After a few days, the police come back to visit, asking someone who knew Raj to join them. The locals in the hostel were afraid to go with the police, so I volunteered and was taken to their headquarters. They took me to the back, where I was shown photos of a body cut into pieces. It was Raj. He’d been cut apart and dumped into the sewer canal nearby by someone. They’d brought me there to identify the body. They never found who did it either, and the image of those photos had never really left me. I’ll forever be haunted by it and I left the hostel shortly afterwards. This poor guy was caught up in some shady stuff, but he didn’t deserve that.”
The Most Confusing Moment Of His Life
“I used to have a buddy that lived in the same neighborhood, a few streets over. One night we were having a couple of drinks in his backyard while playing cards. I had some things to do the next morning, so just before ten I said my good-byes and shoved off. It was a short walk (MAYBE 15 minutes door-to-door), so I never drove. But when I got home, my roommate was coming out the front door, coffee in hand, and dressed for work. He gave me a funny look and said he thought I was asleep, since my truck was in the driveway. I told him where I’d been and asked why he was going in to work at night.
That’s when he kind of laughed and asked if I was wasted. We stared at each other for a minute and then he told me it was just after 5 IN THE MORNING, and he was going in just like he usually did. In my entire life, I’d never felt more confused than I did in that moment. I could tell he was dead serious but I KNEW I had just left my friend’s house.
I checked my phone and sure enough, it was 5-something in the a.m. My roommate left for work. I paced circles in the living room for a bit then called the friend whose house I’d just left. He groggily answered and confirmed I’d left at ten the previous evening.
I have no idea what happened during those 7 hours of my life, and it gives me chills to think about it all these years later. I wasn’t wasted, I wasn’t tired, no one could have slipped anything in either of the two drinks I’d had. There are no known medical conditions that would have caused me to black out, and nothing has happened like it since. I just don’t know what happened to that time.”
“I was the navigation officer for a research ship in the south pacific. We had recently come to Papua, New Guinea for some work along the coast. We had arrived in a small bay at around 10 p.m. in the dark and dropped the anchor. I went over to mark our position on the chart and noticed an annotation that said ‘native village reported in the area’. There were no fires or lights on the coast, so I didn’t think anything much more of it. I turned on all the deck and underwater lights and went back in to the bridge to stand my night watch as everyone else went to bed. With all the lights on, I couldn’t see further than about 25 yards because of a light mist in the pitch black night. I sat in the bridge with the door open because I like the sound of the night and the feeling of the air in the tropics. I kept hearing light splashing in the water and went out to see because often we get hundreds of fish in our underwater lights. There was nothing there. I went back inside but kept hearing faint splashing and couldn’t figure out where it was coming from. Since I couldn’t see in to the distance, I went in to the chart room and flicked on our infrared camera system and there they all were.
About 50 native canoes just sitting outside our pool of light. About 3 people were in each canoe, and they were all just sitting and watching us. They were occasionally paddling one way or the other to keep their station. I have never felt so suddenly and violently alone and small as I did on that ship in the dark. I got a deck hand up and we both just walked around the decks to show that people were awake and moving. They sat there and watched us all night. Completely invisible except for on the infrared cameras. In the morning they came in and traded with us and were very friendly and just hadn’t had a ship in their bay for decades.”
Was Someone Hiding With Them?
I worked at a movie theatre and most often worked the closing shift. One night, me and another manager were sitting in the small office. She was working on the nightly deposit and I was finishing up inventory numbers, We had a CD player that we would listen to at night with a stack of CDs sitting next to it. I stood up and changed the CD and sat back down. About a minute after, the entire stack of CDs LAUNCHED itself across the room. One of the CDs hit my co-worker in the back of the head. She looked around and saw me sitting there dumbfounded, with the CDs scattered all around me and the office. We quickly finished up and left.
A couple of days later, one of the other day shift managers calls me and asks me what we were doing the prior night. She seemed really annoyed, which was out of character for her because we were friends. I asked her what she meant, and she asked me why we had dumped all the security tapes onto the floor and left them there.
I told her we hadn’t touched the security tapes at all. The tapes were stored on top of the CCTV monitor on a small VHS tape shelf. The shelf hadn’t been moved and only the tapes were on the floor. She also said that all the sleeves from the tapes had been removed and thrown all over the place too.”
He Won’t Be Camping For Quite Some Time Now
Once my friend and I were hiking on an overnight trip to the summit of this peak, in order to get from the campgrounds to the peak you had to (unless you wanted to cross a deep river) walk across the mountain ridges and then descend into a valley in order to climb out of the valley onto another set of mountain ridges. It is impossible to reach the mountain in one day, so you have to find a place to camp for the night.
In this area of Alaska, everywhere is tundra and mountains except for the valley between the two ridges. There is cover from the wind there, so we decided to set up camp there. It is important to note that the campground has the only road leading to civilization for miles. To come from any direction other than the one we came from would mean the nearest town is more than a 100 miles away. Also, important side note: when we arrived, we were the only people at the campground.
It is late at night and we are trying to fall asleep when we hear footsteps approaching, with slow human footsteps and a raspy breathing. It was human for sure, not animal. We were armed with a bolt action weapons for protection from bears, so we asked who was out and there was no reply. We then heard them knock over our clothes drying rack. I was scared and warned the person outside that we were armed. The footsteps suddenly picked up as the person ran past our tent opposite of the direction of the campgrounds. There was no shacking of a pack as they ran which I found odd.
It was a sleepless night and when the sun shone on the valley, we exited our tent to find our clothes drying rack in tatters. There were small boot prints in the ground leading towards and away from our tent. We made it to the mountain and hightailed it back to the campground as fast as we could. I don’t know who that was, but I didn’t go camping for a while after that.”
A Hidden Child?
“When I was 18, my family and I took a vacation to Hawaii. My mother wanted to do the touristy thing and do the road to Hana. Normally you can take a tour bus up the road, but that wasn’t good enough for her. So we rented a car. The rental companies typically forbid driving that road because of the liability issues. That didn’t stop my mother.
We had a normal drive up there, plenty to see. We spent all day exploring. So by the time everyone was exhausted, it was night. Now, we were a good way away from the road down, think back dirt roads of Maui. So what do we do? Go down some of the closed-off local roads. This one road, in particular, was a very narrow winding road over the edge of the island. You couldn’t even stop on the road to get out and pee. If you looked over the edge, it was a straight drop into the ocean.
Anyhow, so we were driving in the dead of the night, slowly, and we approach this weird bend that backs up to a heavily forested area, a small waterfall, and a cliff overhand just above us. My mother wanted to take some pictures of the moon, stars, and ocean because it was breathtaking with no city lights. So we pull off to the side of this road, with just enough space to let another car pass you. I, of course, get out too. It was dead silent. Then all of a sudden I hear what sounds like a crying baby. Which was weird. We were in the middle of nowhere and hadn’t seen anyone for HOURS.
So, I’m just standing there, confused, and it stops. I motion for my mother to come over and ask if she heard anything. She didn’t. So we stand there for a little longer and it starts up again. Neither of us could pinpoint where it was coming from. Both of us were panicked because that’s what baby crying does to most humans. We spent a good hour calling out and trying to figure out what to do. Eventually it stopped.
We returned back to the hotel and never heard anything about it.”
It Was Much, Much Worse Than He Thought
“Not exactly a lonely road, but I was speeding west on I-70 through Colorado near Glenwood Canyon, when I decided to slow down and enjoy the view. I notice a State Patrol car in front of me a minute later when he turns on his sirens, and I think he’s got me busted for speeding. Instead, he’s pulling to the shoulder up ahead to help a broken down motorist.
I slow down and remember looking at the motorist who is sitting in the drivers seat with their head down, thinking, ‘Man, that guy is lucky to get help out here, especially with no cell coverage.’
I keep driving west. A few minutes later, I start to notice police cars flying past me headed back east, sirens blaring, going extremely fast through a curvy canyon. One after another for like 15 minutes, including ambulances and fire trucks. It seems like all emergency response in the country is headed back the direction I came from. The next day I’m at a hotel in Utah and discover what happened.
Turns out the broken down motorist had skipped bail, and after being confronted by the state trooper who was there to offer assistance, exited his car and began shooting the officer in his back multiple times. On a normal day, the officer would’ve died as they typically drive alone, but on that day he was headed to training and had a partner in the car, who emptied his clip and killed the motorist. The officer almost bled out on the road but survived.”
She Wasn’t Of This World
“So this happened during my graveyard shift, when I was helping another short-staffed franchise store across town. I had a woman come in, and she seemed a little frazzled and is carrying a bible, but otherwise she seems fine. She buys some chips then starts talking to me about how she consumed an evil spirit that pretended to be a clove of garlic. Of course, I think she is just messing with me, but nope! She pulls out a piece of garlic, lays it on the counter, and starts telling me that it is actually a demon that wanted to possess her.
She then starts asking me about if I believe in spirits, or if I can see it in front of her. According to her, I’m really one-third angel, who was sent to Earth to help her expel the evil spirits. It’s okay if I didn’t know, because she can sense it. She leaves the garlic on the counter and tells me that she will wait for me to deal with it. Now that’s pretty much where the original incident ended. A few days later, this woman pops into the store again. She comes in on a Tuesday at about 2 in the morning. She proceeds to just buy some candy and sort of hang out asking me about jade (the jewelry type) and incense, and if we’ve met before.
Now the weird thing is I didn’t hear or see her come in before she approached the counter. We have a loud siren thing that turns on when the doors are opened and only shuts off when they’re closed. Which is normally not a big deal, but considering I’d been stocking and cleaning in the front the whole time and had only gotten 2 or 3 customers beforehand, it was a bit weird.
She hangs out a bit longer then rushes to restroom and and doesn’t walk out of it until about 6. She says for me to have a nice day and just walks out the store. This deeply freaks me out, because I cleaned the restrooms a little bit after she went in, and she somehow had managed to slip out or hide somewhere when I went to clean them.
Outside of hiding in the stalls, there is nowhere to hide in the restrooms, and there are no windows to slip out of. I looked up at the top of the stalls and at the ceiling, thinking she had a pulled a spider-man, but nope she just disappeared then reappeared and left super casually a couple hours later.”
His Dog Sensed A Presence
“As a rule I don’t believe in ghosts or any other supernatural stuff, but I do have a ghost story of sorts. It’s not very dramatic but at the time I was freaked out and more than a little confused. A few years ago at Beverly Beach State Park in Newport Oregon, I was walking with my dog along this trail that runs along a fairly large creek to the left, and a fairly steep hill filled with brush to the right. I was pretty close to the campground. I could still see the RVs and tents through the trees on the other side of the creek.
As I was walking along, I saw another kid about my age (14ish) and all by myself and feeling a bit lonely, I thought I’d approach him. About 50 feet away from him though, my dog starts panic barking. Hackles raised, teeth bared, tail tucked, feet against the ground. Usually my dog is as friendly as he can be, so I was stunned. I’d never seen him act this way before. I tug on his leash and with all my strength and giving the kid a wide breath, manage to pull my dog past the kid and further along the trail. I apologize for my dog’s behavior and the kid says nothing, just stares at me. Head slowly tracking me, almost like it would in a horror movie.
As soon as the kid is out of sight, my doggo immediately relaxes, wagging his tail and happy as a clam at high tide. Baffled, something in me forces me to turn around and walk back towards the kid wondering what could have made my dog act like that. (Yeah, I’d probably be the first to die in a horror movie.) The kid’s gone. I mean gone, and I have no idea where he could have went where I wouldn’t have seen/heard him. Even if he’d taken off at a dead sprint down the long straightaway and towards the next corner in the 30 seconds my back was turned, I feel like I would have seen him, and thanks to the creek/hillside surrounding him there really was only one way to go.
I suppose its most likely that some shy kid terrified of dogs was equally scared of me and my dog as we were of him, but everyone I tell this story to that’s the type to believe in ghosts are absolutely certain this was dog sensing and evil spirit.
Nowhere Else To Turn
“I had freshly turned 18 and was working a closing shift at a small café in a grocery store. One of my regular customers comes in, Tom. Tom was a hugger, he’d come in and call out, ‘Where’s my girls?’ and we’d all have to awkwardly hug this 80 year old man while he whispered, ‘God bless you,’ in your ear. I hated Tom. He always held on a little too long and whispered a little too close.
On this shift, I was closing alone and Tom came in at about 4 p.m. Not unusual, I dealt with the creepy man and got him his coffee and bagel. He was with his wife this time, and she was sweet but tired looking. He started asking me questions as I worked. What do I have to do at night? Is it hard closing alone? What time am I off? Do I ever get scared walking to my car in the dark? The questions got progressively more uncomfortable, and his wife just sat there silently. I answered as friendly as I could, despite the hair on the back of my neck standing up. I would catch him staring at me often. It was okay though, I was off work at 7, so it wasn’t a big deal.
It wasn’t a big deal until he didn’t leave. His wife went home without him, and he just stayed staring for hours. I asked if there was anything else he needed, he said, ‘No, I’m just waiting for you to get off of work.’
He wanted to walk me to my car, he said, because young girls shouldn’t be in a dark parking lot alone. I told him it wasn’t necessary and continued about my work, ignoring him now even as he stared. He left about fifteen minutes before my shift ended, into the dark Michigan winter, and I breathed a sigh of relief. I didn’t think twice when I punched out and headed to my car. I grabbed my snow brush and began clearing my car, enjoying the quiet that’s unique to a snowy night. I began to hear the crunching of footsteps behind me. I brush it off, I am in a parking lot, after all. But they get closer, past any other car and directly towards my car, parked away from the others in employee parking. I look, and it’s Tom, maybe 50 feet away and smiling. He tells me that I should have looked for him, he had been sitting outside waiting for me, and I should know it’s dangerous for young girls to be alone in a parking lot at night.
I began shaking. I tried to open my car door, but it was frozen shut due to the earlier storm. Tom came closer, calling me a stupid girl and asking God to forgive him. I debated running back into the store, because he was so old he surely couldn’t keep up, right? I didn’t want to chance it, though. He could have been younger, as I’m a terrible judge of age, and I’m not exactly fast myself. So I stand my ground. I fumble in my purse for my pepper spray, thankfully attached to my keys. I tell him to stay back, I have pepper spray, and to go home to his wife. He glowers at me. I show him the teal canister. We’re about 15 feet apart now, he’s well within range. He calls me a witch, spits at me, and heads back into the store. I get in my half-uncovered car and drive home, terrified.
I called the store when I got home (only a mile and a half away, so about 2 minutes) and told them what had happened. They kicked Tom out and told him not to come back. He began cursing up a storm and his wife had to come pick him up. He ended up getting arrested for illicit substances a couple years later, but I don’t know the details, as I had moved away at that point. Can’t say I’m sad to see him go, though.”
Split Second Save
“Back in the early 90s, I worked for Domino’s pizza when this happened. I was an assistant manager, but we had to deliver sometimes too. This night, it was just after 11:00, I made a delivery to a house in one of our middle income neighborhoods. I get to the house and there is not a light on. If the porch light wasn’t on we were supposed to go to a payphone and call the number on the order, in order to prevent robberies. I never did that. Instead, I would just go ahead and go to the door.
But this night, I sat in my car a minute, and I just had a gut feeling, and I always listen to my gut. So I drove back two blocks to a payphone, and called the number, which was disconnected. I decided to wait just a minute before making the second call we were supposed to make. If they didn’t answer the second time, we were supposed to go back to the store. As I stood there, I noticed a Pizza Hut car drive through, but really didn’t think about it, you spot each other while on the road. I call back, still disconnected. For some reason I decide to return to the house, and just see if someone comes to the door.
I get back, and realize the Pizza Hut car is sitting in my driveway. I turn in the long driveway, that is lined on the left side by tall evergreen tree/shrub things. I immediately notice there is something big on the ground next to the open driver’s door of the Pizza Hut car. I pull up behind him and park, and realize that it’s the driver. I decide he must have had a heart attack or something, so I run up to see what I can do to help. When I get to him, I realize his skull has been caved in so bad, I can actually see his brains. I run back to my car and lock the door, I drive like 90 mph those two blocks to the payphone, and I call the cops, then I call my store and tell them what is going on, and have them call Pizza Hut.
I wait for the cops to come through, and I go back. Eventually the detective comes over to talk to me. He tells me that first in the bushes next to the driveway, they found a realty sign, the power is off, and the house is completely empty. They also found two sets of footprints in the bushes. It appears they ordered from both places and waited for either one of us drivers to get there first to rob. I was first, but because I didn’t get out of the car, they had to wait on Pizza Hut to show up. If only I got out of the car the first time, that would have been me laying on the ground dead. For some reason, a gut feeling perhaps, I did not do what I normally did. I never knocked on another door without the front porch light on, unless I knew the customer really well.