The Last Breath

Story by April Rose

Strange occurrences runs in my family. I sense "spirits" on a regular basis. It's always unsettling. But the most unsettling experience with a spirit happened when I was thirteen. I was living in North Carolina at the time. The house we were living in was 30+ years old. We moved into it when I was 10. My room was the master bedroom and had it's own bathroom and walk-in closet. At first I was excited and belated that my parents had been willing to give me the master bedroom. But soon after moving in strange things began to happen in that room...and the belated feeling was gone.

In it's place was fear. Many times I would hear things falling in the room or bathroom. But upon inspection everything would be in place just as I had left it...despite the noises. I would see shadows moving when noone was there. I would come home to find lights turned on that I knew I had turned off before leaving. I would hear footsteps. No one was there those times either. I wasn't the only one to hear or see those things. My mom or sister often experienced the same things when close to or in my room. By the time I was 13 I thought I had heard and seen it all. But then, unexpectedly, one night, I experienced the most terrifying experience of them all.

It was late. Nearly 2:00 am in the morning. Everyone else in my family had been asleep for hours. I had just finished reading a novel and was settling into bed to go to sleep. I turned off the light and closed me eyes. Within seconds I could hear breathing. Loud breathing. It sounded if the person breathing was struggling and fighting just to take each breath. I looked around my room in terror. I was sure that someone was in the room with me...even though I couldn't see anyone. I quickly turned my light back on. I looked around puzzled. No one was there, and the noise had stopped. I tried to calm myself, telling myself that it wasn't anything. I turned the light back off, closed my eyes, and the noise was back. Breathing in and out....long, loud, slow breaths. It kept breathing...and it sounded so close.. As if it was right next to me.

I lay there, trying to remain logical telling myself that it would stop. But it didn't. I felt frozen to my if I couldn't move. I was terrified. Unable to stand it any longer I ran to my sister's room. I woke her up and told her what was happening. She didn't believe me and came back to the room with me to prove that nothing was there. When we walked into my room the breathing was gone again.

She stayed with me several minutes and then went back to bed when we couldn't hear anything. But as soon as my light was off and my head was on the pillow I could hear the breathing again. This time I took my pillow, went to my parents room, and stayed in there the rest of the night. I tried to put the event out of my mind. Only to learn facts several days later that I couldn't ignore.

We were good friends with all our close neighbors and were visiting with an elderly gentleman several days after the breathing incident. We had recently been remodeling some rooms in our house (to sell it) and were talking about the age of the house when Mr. W started telling us about how he and his wife had lived in that house before she passed away. He said that once she passed on he could no longer live there, so he moved into another house in that same neighborhood. According to him, his wife had cancer. In her last months there was nothing the doctors could do for her. She didn't want to spend her last days in a he took her home to stay. During her last dying days she wasn't able to get up. So she just stayed in her bed fighting the disease that had taken over her body. And that was where she took her last dying breath. Casually I asked him if he meant the master bedroom. His answer was yes. I had suspected so. And feel even to this day that the breathing I heard, along with the strange noises, and occurrences, was the spirit of his deceased wife.

After that I didn't feel threatened by the "spirit" or "presence" that I often felt in that room. But I was still happy and somewhat relieved when we moved several months later.