THE CHANDLER HOMESTEAD
The sleet was coming down, and the day had turned dark and cold. The three roommates were determined to get a Christmas tree for their living room. This should not have been impossible seeing they only had a short walk into the woods to cut it down. They reached the spot were they had spied one the week before; and it was Matt who started sawing it first. Than Chris took over, and finally Joseph finished the final cut.
After the tree was cut the three of them took turns dragging the tree out to the small red Ford truck awaiting them. They thru the average size tree into the back of the truck bed. Only two of the friends piled into the front of the cab being there was no room for the third; so Matt rode the short distance in the back with the tree.
Totally aware most people considered the Chandlerhomestead to be haunted; the three roommates could not pass up the deal to rent it out together. Each having their own rooms plus three other guestrooms that they used for various activities was a God send to the guys.
The three roommates had just moved in about two weeks prior and really none of them had felt the old place was haunted nor did they experience any odd happenings.
They set to work upping the tree in the grand living room, with the fire place burning merrily away. They had less than a week before the Christmas party happened, but being guys they knew their girlfriends would help with most of the planning.
The Chandler homestead sat back in the woods with the only access a long winding drive way. In order to get to the house this drive way went past the Chandler cemetery; which all the friends agreed did put an extra eeriness to the atmosphere. However they also knew that in the olden days it wasn’t unusual to have private cemeteries on properties, so they tried to always ignore the creepy-ness to the whole cemetery scene.
Shortly after the tree was put up in the stand Jessica Matt’s girlfriend arrived and went to work putting on the lights to the tree.
Than soon afterward Chris’s and Joseph’s girlfriends arrived; Chrystal and Alisa, both joined Jessica in decorating the tree.
This particular night Joseph had informed everyone he was going to cook enough food for everyone to eat dinner. This was typical of Joseph to cook for everyone being he was a care taker type and not only was he a very good cook he truly loved to cook especially for others.
Joseph was a handsome Jamaican man about six feet tall and he and his girlfriend Alisa made a good looking couple. Alisa was blonde blue eyed and usually agreeable to most things, which was just her easy going nature.
Chris was a sandy blonde haired man and very quite. He and Chrystal had been dating for many years. Chrystal had a swanky hair cut to her pitch black hair, and dressed very New York City modern, always freshly groomed like she just walked out of the shower.
Now Matt was another story all together being the youngest of the roommates. Matt was also tall but a little over weight, in contrast to his girlfriend Jessica who was extremely short petite yet a very jovial gal.
Jessica was cheerful unless she and Matt were quarreling which happened more often than not. Matt had short brown hair, and even though Jessica’s hair was long and usually braided their hair color matched each others perfectly.
Joseph announced the food was ready and everyone was to help themselves to a plate. There was rice enough for an army. Sautéed chicken and vegetables to add on top which was very tasty because Joseph out did himself with the spices.
Everyone was enjoying eating in the living room in various places around the decorated Christmas tree with the fire place burning lively away. Life at this instance couldn’t have been finer.
Joseph stood up and went to find a station on the radio that played Christmas carols to finish off the atmosphere. Everyone was taking much pleasure in the night and the simple festivities until the electricity going out stopped everything short!
Quite echoed through the house; yet luckily the fire place still loomed light in the living room allowing everyone to still see. All three girlfriends however automatically grabbed for their boyfriends protection.
It was Joseph that ventured to his room upstairs to find an emergency flashlight, and than took Matt and Chris around to find theirs while all three girlfriends waited nervously in the living room near the fireplace.
Everyone gathered now again a bit on edge in the living room with the glow of the fireplace reassuringly bright. All six friends discussed the lack of electricity and agreed the sleeting icy rain must have played havoc on the lines up the road or near the house. In either case they all decided that it very likely would be prudent to turn the generator on that was kept in the garage.
While Matt stayed with the three girlfriends trying to keep them calm; Chris and Joseph went to see what they could do with starting up the generator.
There was no moon and no stars, only pitch blackness outside; with the only light to be seen being Chris’s and Joseph’s small flashlights. In the sleeting rain they ventured to the garage which was actually a well maintained barn to look for the generator.
While opening the barn doors; is when the strange thing happened and both friends noticed it! In the darkness they thought they saw a shadow or a presence of some sort vanish further back into the darkness of the barn.
This spooked both the guys and made them abandon the idea of getting out the generator which they had a hard time seeing in the first place! Both guys skedaddled back to the confines of the house and the safe feeling light of the fireplace!
The verbal recollection to everyone what they experienced spooked all in the room! There was no doubt in Chris’s or Joseph’s mind that there was something or a some one in that barn!
What or who they could not totally fathom?
But for sure the generator now was not an option any more. The six friends would just have to wait out the electricity to come back on; when that would happen was any ones guess?
The whole house was growing colder and the only warmth was in the living room from the fireplace.
All the friends thought the wisest thing was for everyone to venture to their rooms and grab stuff to make bed rolls for sleeping and have the six of them camp out in the living room for the night.
The sleet had turned into wet snow coming down by now when all six of the friends went up stairs in the dark quite house to collect their bed rolls and things.
All they could see besides their puny flashlights ahead was total blackness. All they could hear was the quite except for the movements of their own bodies and heavy breathing.
The couples split off to their own rooms. The young girls clinging to their boyfriends like glue. The quite seemed to echo as each couple was entering their rooms. Joseph and Alisa collected their things very efficiently and headed down the stairs with their little flash light. Chris and Chrystal were not far behind coming down the stairs; and that is when they heard the scream!
A scream that stopped everyone in their tracks! This scream appeared to come from Matt’s bedroom; but they hustled first into the fireplace lit living room in a panic before they got up the gumption to think what to do about it! It was Joseph that grabbed Chris and said lets find out what has happened while Alisa and Chrystal hugged each other shaking in front of the fire.
The stairs lit by only two flashlights seemed to creek every step they took. Joseph yelled out in the silence “are you alright up there?” “Hello Matt?” “Matt?” There was no answer back; until they heard a whimpering “Help” come from Matt’s room. It was obvious it was Jessica. They found her cowering in complete darkness against a wall, and she was all but scared to death! They looked around the room with their flash lights for Matt who was no where to be found!
Joseph took Jessica by the hand and led her out into the hall and all three went down the stairs to the living room where Jessica finally found her voice to speak. Jessica said rapidly “I started to collect the things when the flash light went out and I heard some scuffling and than there was no Matt!” “No light!” “No Matt!” “Where is he?” Where is Matt?” Frantically Jessica repeated herself as the others tried to comfort her “Where is Matt?” “Where is he?”
The two guys Chris and Joseph decided to go look for Matt in the other spare rooms off the upstairs hall way, after all he had to be some where?
Chris and Joseph crept up the stairs until they reached the top and than proceeded down the long hall way to the three unused spare rooms. They checked one which appeared empty. Than they went into the one where the computer was hooked up; it was than they thought they heard groaning from the next empty room which they quickly checked and found Matt laying on the floor coming to from being unconscious.
Matt was not aware when questioned what had happened to him; but for sure he had lost his flashlight and had a major bump on his head. Chris helped Matt down the stairs with Joseph leading and before they knew it they were all now standing safe near the fire place totally perplexed of what just occurred? Matt’s large bump on his head puzzled even himself.
All six friends were guessing in many different directions of what could have happened? It was obvious that Matt had been hit from behind possibly dragged to the other room? But by who or worse yet what?
By now some of the friends were starting to think maybe the rumors were true; that the old Chandler place was haunted. For sure what ever the reason they certainly could be in grave danger!
There was no way to leave the old place with the weather so bad!
The best the friends thought they could do was stay in the living room together to keep warm and comfort each other. Only one person had a signal on their cell phone and that was Jessica. They decided to call the police.
It was Alisa that spoke and explained the situation; and at that time the police said the weather was most likely too bad to reach them but they would try. They were advised to arm themselves with anything they could find and just sit tight until help could arrive.
What a horrible situation they were in; but even still Joseph took charge grabbing the fireplace poker for a weapon. Chris armed himself with the saw used to cut off the bottom of the tree, and unfortunately Matt was still out of commission from the bump on his head. Alisa armed herself with a kubaton she carried as a weapon on her keychain; and the other gals held some heavy nick-naks. All divvied up the bed rolls so everyone could stay warm, and finally all that was left to do was to wait.
The wind in the silence could be heard howling around the outside of the house. The storm seemed that it was not going to ever let up.
Unfortunately it was revealed that most of the friends needed to take a bathroom break; so it was decided that they all should venture down the hall to the little bathroom and take turns guarding the entrance. All three girls first went in together as girls often do. Than Matt went and Chris and Joseph all took their turns.
It wasn’t till they all walked back into the living room did they notice their fire had for some reason almost totally burned out, almost like some one or something had tried to put it out. Eeriness crept over everyone as Joseph quickly tried to revive the fire.
What was happening? What strangeness? Were they now not safe even in the living room together?
When all three friends calmed down and finally settled in some sort of comfortable positions with the girls clinging to their boyfriends again; there was only the crackling of the fire and the wind howling as well you could hear almost everyone’s shallow breathes.
All the friends had their eyes alert and pealed to see the best they could in this dim lit room. The two remaining flashlights were turned off to save the batteries.
Peacefulness started to fill the room a bit now. The six friends were calming down. Jessica’s and Chrystal’s eyes were slowly starting to close knowing the other friends would stay on alert.
It was now three in the morning as the grandfather’s clock echoed three chimes startling all alert! However the earlier nights escapades had all of the friends exhausted enough to relax back again. Next Chris and Matt’s eyes were shut and you could hear snoring coming from both men.
Joseph and Alisa were still wide awake not wanting to fall asleep for safety reasons; and that is when they heard distinct banging coming from upstairs! Wide eyed both Alisa and Joseph looked at each other with a questioning fright in their eyes as they quickly shook everyone awake!
The sound stopped as abruptly as it had begun. But the dreadfulness did not end there!
All of a sudden there was a knock at the main entrance door!
No one wanted to move from their frozen stances. Everyone was standing now in fear of what was to come!
Next the door handle was being turned, and deep breathes from all had stopped to no breathing at all!
Finally; there was a shout “This is the police” “Is anyone there?”
Focused now and relieved Joseph went to answer the door, but to his dismay it was not an officer but a masked man with a gun!
Who now shoved at Joseph to get back to the others in the living room! This masked man gave orders for all six friends to sit on the floor while at the same time he yelled “Stan!” “You can come out!”
Before you could shake a stick there were footsteps coming down the stairs accompanied by a flashlight, as a matter of fact Matt’s flashlight!
This man was masked also and apparently knew the ins and outs of the homestead.
The men had the guys move to one side of the room while the gals were aloud to sit in front of the fire. Apparently they did not consider the women as a threat and only kept the gun pointing at Chris, Matt and Joseph.
As the two masked men talked amongst them selves was when Alisa readied her kubaton. The masked men were not watching them and also had lowered their gun from the guys. This is when Alisa took a hand full of soot and thru it into the gun mans eyes at the same time she jumped up and used her kubaton to lock up his wrist; while Joseph grabbed the gun and Chris grabbed the other masked man. At one point all six friends had their hands helping with the two masked men!
Simultaneously there were flashing lights coming from out side and it was apparent that there was some sort of extra help on the way! It was a Marshall that entered first and took over the scene with a deputy right behind!
Adrenalin was flowing high all the way around the room and that is when walla! The electricity went on!
Everything seemed so bright!
The next thing that happened was that the Marshall thru off both men’s mask! The first one wasn’t recognized by any of the roommates; but the second was very recognizable! It was Morris Chandler their landlord!
What the heck!
Another deputy apparently familiar of the old place; came in and said there was a fuse box inside the barn that had been shut off and he just turned it back on.
Well everyone was safe and sound, but now they needed to hear what the story was? How could this had been the Landlord doing all this to them? Why?
After that horrific night it took a few days for the Marshall to get back to the guys on what really was happening with the whole situation.
Apparently the landlord Morris Chandler was using renting out the old place as a rouse. Morris was using it as a deterrent to keep the suspicion off of him and the hidden money he had kept there from a bank robbery. Morris knew the police would more likely check his residence and not a place he was renting even if they did happen to catch on to him. The other masked man was Stan Greenburg who was a notorious bank robber helping Morris move the money to another location. Both Stan and Morris thought that night they would simply scare the kids away; but they didn’t expect the roads to be blocked keeping them there, and they wanted to move that money before that night.
There was a large reward for the recovery of the money which the three roommates were awarded for all they went through. The money was found in Matt’s bedroom under the floor boards.
The three roommates also were allowed to finish their one year rental agreement in the old Chandler place, and consequently they all chipped in and bought the old place together afterwards.
To this day Chris and Chrystal live in half the house with their cute little dog Peebles.
Matt however moved to Idaho after breaking up with Jessica.
Joseph lives in the other half of the house with his wife Cosandra and their three kids, Corey, Colynn and Kirk…
None of them still like the fact the cemetery is on the property; but when they share the great living room at Christmas time they are always reminded of the good spirits that frolic there.
Lisa J. Warner