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Ghosts of Christmas Past

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Christmas ranks second to only Halloween when it comes to paranormal holidays. And although we might not instantly think of paranormal when it comes to Christmas, the holiday's themes and traditions are replete with ghosts (Dickens' A Christmas Carol), angelic encounters (not only the Biblical account, but also It's A Wonderful Life and numerous other angel stories), Christmas miracles and magic, and that plump mystical fellow, Santa Claus.

Following are true stories from readers that twinkle - sometimes darkly - with the kind of Christmas spirit that comes wrapped in a special box labeled "Unexplained."

BROTHER-IN-LAW'S CHRISTMAS GIFT

My brother-in-law was murdered on November 29, 2010 in Buffalo, New York. He was 20 years old with his first child on the way. Needless to say, the whole family was devastated. I was depressed for two weeks and couldn't eat. I think I took it hard because even though I only knew him for three years (as long as my son's father and I have been together) I knew him longer than I knew my son's father. The thought of him and my son's connection brings tears to my eyes. My son won't remember his favorite uncle.

Two days after he died, as I was going to sleep, I felt a heavy presence in my room. Then suddenly this loud buzzing noise started. I looked up and about a foot above my head there was a white football-shaped orb that looked like there was churning smoke in it. The noise was so extremely deafening that I had to cover my ears. I was scared to look directly at it. This continued for about five minutes until it whizzed past my face and out my window toward the street.

On Christmas Day that year, I prayed that God or my brother-in-law would give me a sign to let me know that he was watching over us and protecting my son and his father. On Christmas night, as I was putting my son to bed, I prayed one last time.

An hour later, as I sat in bed, I heard bells. We have a wreath that's made of golden bells hanging on a wall out of reach. I heard three big, distinct shakes of the wreath followed by a light rattle. It sounded as if it was right at my door, even though the wreath is about 30-40 feet from my room.

I sat there motionless for about two minutes because I felt like someone was going to come through the door at any second. Everyone had already gone to bed so I know that no one did it. I believe it was my brother-in-law letting me know he is watching over my son and his father. - Nicole C.

THE CHRISTMAS TROLL

I do not often tell people of this incident nowadays. I do not like to think about it because it genuinely scares me.

When I was around 11 years old, I had been sent to spend Christmas with my grandparents in London, England. They had recently moved into a new house. I say "new", but it was in fact older than the house they had previously lived in and was later on to become the setting for many strange and unexplained events. However, I was looking forward to spending Christmas day with my grandparents.

On Christmas Eve, in the very early hours of the morning (around 4 or 5 a.m.), I awoke suddenly. My bedroom door had been left slightly ajar and my grandparents left the downstairs light on in case I awoke and needed to use the downstairs toilet.

My grandparents both snore very loudly in their sleep, and I could hear the pair of them snoring in unison. I was beside myself with excitement to notice the pile of gifts assembled all neatly wrapped at the foot of my bed. I toyed with the idea of maybe sneakily opening one or two, but then thought better of it and lay back down in my bed, deciding to wait until "given the nod."

It was at that point I heard the rustling of gift paper, and it came to my mind that my grandparents obviously hadn't finished positioning my gifts, so I pretended to be asleep. But the rustling sounded more urgent and I could not think why.

Then it struck me: My grandparents and I were the only ones in the house... and I could hear both of them snoring - in unison. It was unmistakably both of them. Without even thinking, I sat bolt upright and saw at the foot of my bed something which to this day I cannot explain.

There was a small, childlike figure. It had no hair and no clothing. Its skin was kind of brown and wrinkled and very pale. It had two black holes for eyes and a small triangular-shaped hole where its nose should be. But most terrifying was its mouth, which was just a very long thin slit.

As it turned its head to greet me, it smiled at me and I heard a whooshing noise as it disappeared. At that exact moment, I heard the sound of a door slam downstairs. I hid my head under the covers and after what seemed an eternity of screaming and banging, I heard my grandparents awaken and my grandfather rushed into my room.

Downstairs in the lounge was the gift the creature had been scrutinizing. The paper was ripped and distributed all over the room and the gift (an Etch-a-Sketch) had been left where it had been dropped at the back door, which for some unknown reason was wide open. - Leigh W.

Next page: Little Ghost Missed Christmas

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