4 Aug 2022


"The Abandoned House": a creative non-fiction memoir

Format: APA

Academic level: College

Paper type: Coursework

Words: 799

Pages: 3

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Against the darkened room, all we could see were the falling walls that acted as ghostly silhouettes of the previous owner’s existence. My friends and I could hear the wind whistling through the trees, which brought with it the happy noise of a family that once lived here and sending a clear message that the owners enjoyed the comfort that this house once offered. Parts of the ceiling were dangling dangerously in the air as if daring us to touch them and discover their secrets. Pieces of old cloth were scampered on the old floor, their only aim now being to absorb any rain that dared to enter the house. Cold water from the thunderstorm that raged outside the building seeped through the frames of the windows, which were blistered and scampered. All around us were signs of past adventures and quickly abandoned personal belongings. With the sound of rain engulfing us in this silent house, we felt like intruders in the abandoned building. 

Growing up in a small town, we always had a lot of time and an unbelievably short list of things to do. This meant that my small group of friends and I were always looking for new adventures and chances through which we could explore every nook and cranny of the neighborhood. Every summer holiday, we would get on our bikes and roam about until we found something interesting that caught our attention. While we had the freedom to take part in all the escapades that we wanted, one thing was forbidden to us - the abandoned house on the hill. 

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According to town legends, the house had been abandoned in the mid 60's. It was huge and used to belong to someone significant at the start of the 20 th century and was later inherited by his daughter. However, the story goes, the daughter decided to step out and leave one day and never came back. There were no goodbyes, no warning and no indication to the rest of the town-people of a reason why she would have to leave. She decided to depart abruptly, leaving behind all her family possessions. Since as long as I could remember, there were warning tales about the abandoned house. During Halloween, terrifying stories would be told by adults of the events that happened there. Parents would warn their children to stay away, and teenagers would boast about how, in one way or another, they had crept into the house and subdued a supernatural force. Each story was completely different, some detailing ancient witch curses, and others speaking of an angry presence. 

As a twelve-year-old, these stories terrified and scared me at the same time. This was the same for every other twelve-year-old around me. It also meant that some of our escapades were primarily centered around gawking at the building but never once stepping in. However, one rainy afternoon, while my friend Melinda and I tried to get back home in the middle of a storm that had suddenly started, we rushed into the abandoned house without a second thought. Soaked down to our bare necessities, the abandoned house seemed a comforting option to walking home in the shuddering rain. 

The old house was no more than a shack on its foundations. We were not sure how long the seemingly weak building could stand in the growing power of the rain, but the house seemed the only chance to protect ourselves from the angry downpour. Over the years, we had roamed this street, daring each other to enter this spooky house. As Melinda pushed it, the door creaked open, slowly welcoming us in. Standing on the porch, I was sure that it and once been fully functional, but it was now scrappy as a result of years of being neglected. Once we entered, the first observation that dust and mold coated every available surface. We stepped carefully along the floor, as a number of dark holes already existed in areas where the boards had snapped from mold. Cobwebs brushed our faces as we ventured further into what had once been a home, and a shiver rushed down my spine. 

We made our way through the basement full of items: nooks and crannies, and small openings. There were plenty of places where I expected a ghost to jump out at me, and yet all we got was the smell of rotting wood. Several decades had covered the walls of the basement with cobwebs of intricate beauty with rust on the window bars. Some part of the window panes were missing, welcoming the damp wind which flowed through the house, into the basement. It is easy to say that abandoned houses tended to creak, but this was only a house that you had to hesitate while steeping through the alleyways. As we walked through the house, it dawned on us that there was nothing for us to fear. No ghosts were waiting to jump out and grab us, and no hungry mystical creature awaiting to feast on us. It dawned on us that all this house represented was a story yet to be told, an adventure unknown. As we settled in one corner of the basement on a dusty rag, Melinda and I laughed as we thought of the stories we would tell about the invisible force we defeated 

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