Last Stop, Blackwell
Written and Copyrighted to Shani Bush.
A charming woman arrived at Blackwell Station, soaking wet from the deluge of rain. Just as she in haste headed inside, everyone turned as she dripped her way across the station, drenched to the bone. Amelia scolded herself for forgetting to bring her umbrella as she handed her money to the man in the ticket booth. Even he frowned at the dreadful weather as he gazed toward the door.
"O, Bloody Nora! The blasted cloud bursts are now coming down even harder than before!'' Amelia grumbled and grimaced as she tried to dry herself and her belongings off.
The station clerk came on speaker: "Due to the brutal conditions outside, with more predicted tonight, all scheduled departures and arrivals are now cancelled until further notice! I’m afraid that the country roads leading back toward the city are flooded out for the time being; those of you who are city people are now stuck here for the night. Sorry for any inconvenience this has caused you."
After a hectic morning, folks who were stuck at the station snarled and cussed the rain, annoyed ready to yank their hair out! Whereas, others picked up their bags and were quick to leave. Meanwhile, Amelia went to sit down for a while, moving toward the nearest bench, as an older gent by the name of Darren Randall collided with her, causing her to almost fall and spill her possessions on the dusty floor. He apologized profusely as he assisted in picking up her things and she placed them back into her purse.
The commuters spent the rest of the period of time wandering around the little station, looking for things to keep them engrossed as they waited out the dismal weather to clear. Amelia and Darren kept themselves busy by playing a few hands of cards. She protested in a not so lady-like way, flinging the cards down on top of the bench.
"There is no beating you, at this game," Amelia snarled.
When he rose got up to go for a walk, Darren asked, "Would you like anything while I’m up―tea, coffee, or donuts perhaps?”
Without saying anything, she simply shook her head in response to his question. She then spent the time pouting. The prospect of spending a night in a dismal, dank, and unnerving station felt not so appealing in her mind.
By chance, the counter clerk had a stove in the back of the station where he and the staff slept, to everyone's surprise. Thus, It also enabled them to have a warm meal at lunch and dinnertime. By the time lunchtime approached, most of the travelers remained either standing at the windows and doorways, observing the rain as it poured down before their eyes. Others sat waiting without one complaint for lunch to arrive.
"Hot stew's ready. Come and get it! We also have some lemonade. Just grab yourself a bowl and a glass," bellowed the clerk, whose name tag declared him to be “Mr. Bellington.”
The canister holding the utensils suddenly spilled as the clerk reached over to get them, which caused it to rolling around the floor. Everyone froze for a moment, startled by the clatter. Mr. Bellington figured it was a fluke and resumed filling bowls and glasses as he handed each person their food and drink.
As soon as everyone got their lunch and were seated, it happened again. This time, though, whatever it was knocked an entire pot of stew that was also knocked all over the cart and on the floor. Cursing aloud, He clerk quickly retrieved some towels and began cleaning up the mess, growling in contempt as he bent down on one knee.
“Whoever or whatever you are, STOP IT THIS MINUTE AND LEAVE US ALL IN PEACE!"
As soon as he uttered those words, the odd manifestations stopped. With calm lasting for the next few hours, everyone had settled in by about nine o’clock that evening. Some were already asleep when nine-thirty rolled around, Amelia included, until an eerie sound of the bell made her bolt upright from a sound sleep.
Quiet as possible, Amelia rose from her cot, trying to find the sound. When she got closer, the noise stopped. She remained standing still a moment, trying to see if she could hear it. Moments later, it happened again. As she slowly tiptoed her way to the counter, she tilted her body over to view the inside, hopeful that maybe Mr. Bellington or one of the other staff members was still up stirring about the back room. To her bewilderment, they still remained sound asleep. After she backed away from the counter, she looked around, in puzzlement whilst she tried to find the source of the sound. She jumped back as if someone passed right by her, bumping into her. The noise stopped again and she decided to head back to her cot, hoping to fall fast asleep. On the other hand, that would not be the case tonight.
About midnight, she was awakened again, this time by the sound of an odd clunking noise. Once again, she got up and tried to find the source of the commotion. The minute she moved closer to the entrance doorway, it became louder, louder, and louder. Amelia tiptoed up to the door and peered out into the dreary, foggy rain-soaked night. She then headed outside and gazed around, hoping someone was out there and could explain the noises she had heard.
To her dismay, no one seemed to be there, even though the sound remained. Once she walked down off the first porch step of the porch, the sound came to an immediate halt. All of a sudden, before Amelia strange mist appeared and started to move toward her at a fast pace.
Terrified by what she was seeing, Amelia revolved around to run, only to slip-up and plummet off the porch, twisting her ankle in the process. The mist then it turned instead heading en route and headed for the door of the station. Fearing for the others’ well-being, Amelia bolted up after it. She hoped to be able to halt whatever it was from hurting anybody. The minute she went inside, she found it heading precisely in Darren's direction. Shouting as loudly as possible, she awakened them all from a their sound slumber.
Darren also bolted up out of a sound sleep, wondering what had happened. He browsed to his left as he scrambled off his cot and dashed in the direction of the back of the station, trying in desparation to lose whatever was behind him, with Amelia and the clerk Mr. Bellington hastily trailing in pursuit. By the time they had reached him, they found him cowering in the corner, near and found a strange opening in the wall. The clerk Mr. Bellington went over to the opening while Amelia went to check on Darren. Suddenly, the clerk said "Hey! Take a look at this."
In the opening, they found an old book. This turned out to be an old diary book. As Mr. Bellington wiped the dust from the book, they both suddenly heard Darren wail. Turning around, they found him being dragged into a different enclosure. They bolted ran toward Darren, and the clerk dropped the book as they attempted to pull him out of the enclosure. Nevertheless, it was too late: what had grabbed him had him locked inside it.
Frantic to find a way to open the enclosure, they pushed each plank of wood, lumber or block eager to find a mechanism that would open the secret door. After several failed attempts, Mr. Bellington picked up the book as they returned to the front of the station. Everyone in the station gathered around, hoping to find out what was going on. Amelia and the clerk said nothing, as they passed everyone and walked into the clerk’s office.
Once at his desk Mr Bellington started to read the diary, as Amelia drifted aimlessly, back and forth across the floor of the office, wondering what could have taken Darren. At that moment, Mr. Bellington’s eyes narrowed while his mouth gasped as if it was losing for air. “Listen to this!” he bellowed.
"October 31, 1901, No matter how hard I try to reason with her, she still insists on picking a fight with me, though I have done nothing wrong. She will not tell where the child is, she will only say over and over again our son is dead. How can one believe her lies? Surely, she would not cause harm to an innocent child. Over a lovers’ quarrel. How many times must I apologize, even when I have done nothing?"
Mr. Bellington sat still a minute as if he had frozen solid. He stood up out of the blue and started going through an old chest that held all the station’s old and current night duty logs for who was on duty each night at the station. Picking up each log, he examined them quickly, as if he was trying to find someone specific. He then spoke with content, "Ah ha!.... I do not believe this." He raised up and began to rummage through all the ticket stubs and receipts.
Amelia continued to walk up and down as he went through everything. However, he stopped her once again. "Amelia, look at this." She changed direction of where she was pacing and went over to see what had excited him."How do you know my name," she asked puzzled.
"From your tickets, of course. Your name is, stamped on them," he chuckled.
She looked over his shoulder at the book entry and ticket stub in disbelief. In the passenger manifest there was another man named Darren from 60 years before. Brushing it off as nothing, she went back to pacing, while He he went back to scanning through the stubs and reading the diary. By, the second entry, he was alarmed and made Amelia once again stop dead in her tracks. She rushed over as he began to read aloud this the entry.
"October 31, 1902,
Had all I can take of this woman and her lies. I will finish it tonight. Even a year after our son goes missing she still plays these games. Well, after tonight no more, she will not toy with my emotions any longer. One day my son will be found. That is a promise."
Mr. Bellington spoke aloud, "No more periodical entries after this date, from the looks of things. I wonder if something happened after the last one is written. It does almost sound as though, something had happened to the child. Now, I do remember hearing stories of a woman who could have been expecting, or already had a child, and there were stories of a rather nasty love triangle. Though, I do not know or actually believe that it is true, it was said that . It was a rather nasty love triangle one a fateful evening of October 31―I believe it was a year after this last entry―. No one knows what happened to her or him, other than there were some claims of seeing her haunt this old train station.
Personally, I've never seen her myself in all the years I have worked in this weird place, only experienced a few moans. Earlier tonight's the first time I have ever had an experience of something being knocked off," Mr. Bellington recalled.
Just as he finished saying that, a loud thump came from the wall near the air vent, startling them. He jumped up, grabbing a flashlight as he peered into the vent. To their surprise, it was none other than Darren, who had seemingly made his way through a maze of air ducts, managing to find the clerk’s office. Breathing heavily, he jumped out of the air duct and leaned forward as he tried to catch his breath. Amelia helped him to the nearest seat while the clerk offered him a glass of water.
As soon as he regained his breath again, he started telling what had happened to him after he was dragged into the enclosure.
"Something grabbed my ankle as we turned, and the next thing I knew, I was being led into this dark, tight place. In addition, I could not get out after the doorway closed. I tried to find a tunnel, or anything for that matter, luckily did find an old air duct; I loosened the screws and took off the grate. Climbing into that thing was not pretty: dark and scary, I tell you. About an hour later, I managed to find a way to your office. I am still not sure who or what grabbed me; I could not see them."
Mr. Bellington picked up the diary as he rose up, showing Darren what they had found earlier. Looking at the journal entries that they had found, he made a quick glance at them then turned back to his drink as though he knew about it. When Mr. Bellington inquired, "Are you all right, Darren? Do you know who wrote in the journal?"
"No!" Darren retorted.
Becoming wary of his suddenly odd behavior, Amelia said, "Why are you acting as though you are hiding something?" Just then, he hurried out of the room with them quickly close behind. To their surprise, he disappeared on them and no one else seemed to know where he went. Just as one of the passengers passed by, Mr. Bellington tapped one her on the shoulder and asked, "Did you see where which direction the tall older man went, when he rushed out of my office?"
The woman just stood there a moment, staring, then said, "I'm sorry, I have seen no one else leave your office; sir, are you feeling alright?" Amelia and the clerk looked bewildered at each other as they went off again, hoping to find where Darren was hiding.
There was still no sign of Darren after twenty minutes of searching. As they decided to give up the search, a mysterious mist began to enter the room. Approaching, they noticed Darren standing over by the window, staring at it and looking terrified. He abruptly, burst out of the door in apparent terror.
They chased after him just as the mist subsided. "He couldn't have gotten that far," Amelia said in distress. They ran down the steps, into the dark night, and gazed in both directions as they yelled.: "DARREN. DARREN!"
It was no use. …After ten minutes attempting to locate him, they gave up the search. Seemed as though Darren had disappeared into thin air. Heading back to the station, Amelia thought to herself, "Why did he run off like that? What could he be hiding from? It is as though he had just vanished into thin air like a ghost,―twice! I need to find out what this wretched man’s up to."
When they returned to the station, strange sounds of crying swiftly enclosed the room. Everyone except Amelia and Jones was upset by it. The passengers backed up to near the walls, trying desperately to escape the creepy cries that washed over the room. Then it sounded, making it seem as though the sound was coming came from the walls themselves. Everyone else bolted out of the room. Only Amelia and Mr. Bellington had remained, and they went around the area, trying to find the sound.
They managed to trace toward the entrance of Mr. Bellington’s office. Standing still in the middle of the office, the noise started up again, and this time, near the area of the air conditioning vent. To their surprise, was the exact area where Darren had come from just hours before.
Taking his tool, Mr. Bellington unscrewed the bolts holding the grate; when they took it off the wall, they found to their surprise there was no sign of a person or any animals. There was only the unusual sound of crying. Even though the noise appeared farther away from them, it was still loud enough for them to distinguish a cry. However, they were not sure, if it was an adult or child.
They were sure, though, that it was very peculiar and unworldly, giving the air a frightful chilliness. They left the office in a hurry, leaving the air conditioning vent off the wall, as they headed outside in the cold damp air weather. They went around the building they went in search for of the source of the noise, starting from the other side of the vent.
Even so, when Mr. Bellington shined the flashlight into the deep hole, he still could see nothing. With the sound of the crying still going on, they were not only perplexed also rather exasperated by it.
By the time, they returned out of the cold damp air; went back inside, they were stunned to find something had followed them inside. It was the mysterious mist which came had come rushing swiftly past them, heading toward one of the exit doors near the back of the station.
As they tracked it back outside, they found Darren, who, to their surprise, appeared to be just as clean as he appeared hours before. There was not any sign that he even had been in the air conditioning vents or that he had ever been in trouble. As the mist started coming closer and closer, he started to back away.
Still, the mist succeeded in engulfing him. They heard a screech before it moved toward the side of the building, then headed toward an old uninhabited underground mining excavation. Everyone who that heard Darren’s cries for help came rushing out of the station and offered to help find him.
Overhearing his cries for help, they headed toward the mine. However, by the time they both of them made it, got there he had already disappeared.
One of the patrons handed them flashlights to Amelia and Mr. Bellington. They looked into the hole could no longer see him found no sign of Darren. It was useless to try to go into it, though it was not a total loss; they did stumble upon his wallet, though, and an old picture near where he fell into the hole. To their surprise, held a picture of him and with the woman of the mist which fell out of the wallet. The woman who appeared to be confused.
Pondering if Darren could be the old lover of the woman who haunts the old station. If he was in fact the old lover and was deceased as well, they thought that would explain the odd occurrences happening all evening. What they found next convinced them even more that it really was Darren, and that he was also haunting the station.―Amelia found there was a love note inside his the wallet that read:.
After tonight, this will be the last journal entry. I cannot take any more, even though she is long gone. After years apart, I can finally be with her. I feel so guilty about what happened to you, my love. I am forever remorseful for all eternity. My love, I will be with you soon.
Amelia took a deep breath as she handed the note back to the clerk Mr. Bellington, who suddenly jumped up onto his feet. As if a light bulb came upon a thought had just occurred to him, he went back to his the station's office, with. Everyone in tow followed closely behind, trying to keep up with him. After sitting down, he started to rifle through old papers, he had that were hidden in his old desk. He finally and uttered with satisfaction, "Eureka!"
"Here’s an old newsprint editorial on the death of a female in the 1890’s. From what it says, this woman had fooled around, trying to get her lover’s attention. It appears she tripped and fell...I do not believe it. This may be who and why she haunts this place, and why."
"The woman in question fell into that old mining area. At first, the police suspected foul play was involved, and arrested a fellow by the name of...Darren Randall…Uh eventually released, charges dropped, and he was, admitted into a hospital for about....two years then released."
"Her death had been ruled an accident by the time he was released from the hospital. No one knows, though, what occurred after he left the hospital, from the looks of things. Still does not answer the question, though. Of, if he did die, or why is he also haunts haunting this old place? If in fact, he is the one. Well, I suppose we will never really know, will we? I do hope however, the blasted haunting will end now."
The morning finally approached; the rain had stopped, and the fog had lifted. And so did the activity from the previous night had ended, leaving everyone greatly relieved. When the train arrived, they picked up their belongings and got on the train it. Once seated on the train, Amelia thought about the whole series of events. Reflected as she sat down asking herself, this Darren that she had met last evening could actually be the Darren from those articles? What if he and the lady were the ones haunting the old station?
As luck would have it, for the ghosts, for now, the truth and secrets of the old Blackwell station will remain a haunting mystery for a while longer, waiting for someone to reveal its secrets.