Lilly and Tom rushed into the coffee shop to tell me the latest about Brat Boy.

    I find it always interesting to hear the ghostly experiences of others. This on-going saga with Lilly and Tom isn’t one where they have actually seen the ghost, but observed changes in the behavior of a neighborhood boy.

    Lilly and Tom live in a section of town surrounded by older homes built in the late 1800’s to the 1940’s. Much remodeling had been done in the area over the years, but it remains a charming neighborhood.

    Tom was particularly fond of an old military man who lived across the street. They would have long talks in the evening. He was interested in the stories, but it was an excuse to help out the elderly man. Lilly always sent some food along to make sure he was eating properly.

    The sad day arrived when the old man died. His family put the house on the market immediately after his funeral.

    It wasn’t long before a family  moved into the neighborhood. The new neighbors were a woman with three children, a boy 16, a girl 12 and another boy 8 years old. With all the antics of the elder son, he soon got the reputation of being a brat. He would ride his skateboard in the street, tag a ride on passing cars, swear at his mother and beat up on his little brother.

    The police were always at the house. He was gone for a few years for selling drugs.

    Now he was back.

    He was still a brat. His time in jail didn’t teach him any positive lessons. He didn’t go to school and he didn’t work. He’d have his friends over while his brother and sister were at school and their mother at work.

    He graduated from a skate board to a motorcycle. His friends had motorcycles, too, and they’d race up and down the street. They acted as though they owned the road. It was a major problem for the other residents.

    Then, he got into music. He and his friends would make all kinds of racket in the garage practicing.

    The strange thing was that he and his band did get hired to play at various events. He did get a car, but there was an issue when his mother needed him to help her with errands and taking his siblings to lessons or practices.

    “I just came home from getting groceries,” Lilly explained. “The neighborhood was quiet. No sign of Brat Boy and his friends.”

    She heard the front door slam across the street. She turned and saw Brat Boy running from the house, barefoot and shirtless. He either tripped or dove into the rosebushes. He stayed there for awhile, then emerged with scratches on his arms, face and torso.

    He limped across the street asking, “Ma’am, may I use your telephone?”

    Lilly wasn’t going to invite him in the house, so she handed him her cell phone. She did debate about doing so. She didn’t trust this kid, but his polite “ma’am” and simple request took her by surprise.

    He called his mother, asking her to come home. He explained that something was in the house.

    “It won’t let me alone, whatever it is. Things were flying off the walls and shelves in my room. It even flipped me out of bed. I was laying on the floor with the mattress on top of me.”

    He paused, listening to his mother.

    “But Mom, you don’t understand.”

    He paused again.

    “Yes, I understand. I’m sorry Mom, but I need you to come home. I’m not going into that house alone.”

    Lilly got the last of her groceries into the house. When she returned, the young man handed her her phone thanking her.

    “Having a rough day?” Lilly asked.

    “Yes, ma’am. May I ask you something?”

    Lilly nodded.

    “Do you believe in ghosts?”

    “Yes, Tom and I have had some experiences.”

    “Well, we have one, too, but he leaves Mom, Kary and Brad alone.”

    He told Lilly about some of the experiences.

    • The hot water in the shower would suddenly turn off and he’d be forced to finish his shower with cold water.
    • Every time he’d complain to his mother something would fly out of nowhere and hit him in the face.
    • He wasn’t sure how many times he was tripped and fell down the stairs, but he admitted it was usually after he said something mean to his sister or brother.
    • Lights would turn off in his room, but other lights were on in the house.
    • When he took the remote control from his brother and changed the channel on the television, it turned off.

    It was clear to Lilly that this ghost was disciplining him every time he misbehaved.

    She truly believed it was their old neighbor, trying to teach Brat Boy there were consequences to his acting out inappropriately. She wasn’t sure if the pathetic young man before her was getting the message.

    “Thanks for listening,” he said. “I guess I’ll go on home and wait for my mom.”

    Lilly went inside after watching him cross the street. He sat down on the curb near the mailbox and the driveway.

    Lilly was keeping an eye out the window, she felt sorry for the young man. She saw a car go into the driveway. The boy stood up, opened the car door and gave his mother a big hug. He got some things out of the back of the car and carried them into the house.

    Tom finished up the story.

    “You wouldn’t believe the difference in Brat Boy. He signed up for college, he took the GED (high school equivalency test) while he was incarcerated. His name is Tim and he’s turned into a decent kid.”

    He no longer swore at his mother, beat up his little brother or made a nuisance of himself around the neighborhood. He was working part-time at Home Depot.

    “I think old man Turner finally got Tim’s attention.”

    I hope you enjoyed this Real Ghost Story. Thanks for stopping by!

    Sharon