The first time I found out my girls’ boarding school was haunted, I was crying in the library. The bullies had singled me out from day one as the ugly geek girl which wasn’t true. I was hiding in the corner of the reference section which no one but the teachers visited when something caught my eyes.
At first I thought it was because my vision was blurred by tears but then the fuzzy white mist before me began taking shape. I dried my face and stopped sniffing as the ghostly form of a young teenage girl appeared. She was shorter then me, with pig tailed hair and long dress.
‘What’s wrong?’ she asked, her voice whispery and as light as a feather.
Anybody else might have freaked out, but I was use to ghosts. I just hadn’t expected to see one at school!
‘The other girls are being mean to me,’ I muttered.
‘Girls were mean to me once too,’ the ghost responded.
‘What’s your name?’ I asked.
‘Annabelle. What’s your’s?’
‘Becky. How did you die?’
The ghost floated and turned about as if to take the library in. I wondered if she knew she was dead. Sometimes, ghosts didn’t know that.
‘It was an accident, I think, I fell down the grand staircase,’ Annabelle answered as thoughtfully as a ghost could.
‘Oh, how terrible!’ I replied.
‘It was a long, long time ago. It doesn’t matter. It’s been ages since I last found someone who could see me. Are you a witch or a medium?’
I shrugged, ‘I’m not sure.’
Annabelle sank down and came into a sitting position just above the floor. The library was silent. School was well over for the day and everyone had gone to eat or play.
‘Tell me about these girls. I’ll scare them good for you if you like,’ Annabelle added.
‘You’d do that?’ I asked, wiping my face with a hankie.
‘Sure. We’re going to be best friends, right?’
The ghost smiled and her face lit up.
I had a bad feeling in my belly, something wasn’t right here…..but Annabelle was just a little ghost. What harm could she really do?
‘Okay,’ I said slowly then I told her about the five girls who had been bullying me.
The next day, Darcy was missing from class. She had been the girl who had called me names and put chewing gum in my hair. The teacher said she was unwell, she had fallen out of bed hit her head badly. A few days later, we were told she had been taken to hospital in a comma, she might never recover.
I tried to tell myself that my new ghost friend couldn’t have had anything to do with that that. Lots of people fall out of bed in the middle of the night, don’t they? The bad feeling I had before came back and I tried to find Annabelle to ask her, but I couldn’t make contact.
On the second day, Mabel tripped and broke both her legs. She had stolen my things, including my shoes and hide them. Mabel claimed someone pushed her but there’d been no one there. She was taken to hospital but her legs didn’t mend and she had to spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair. She never came back to school either.
That night, I crept from my bed and went to the library. Sitting in the reference section, I called Annabelle to me using a candle and a charm my great-grandmother had given me. I watched a white mist began to take a girl like shape.
‘Hello, Becky,’ Annabelle said cheerfully.
‘Two girls have been hurt now, did you have anything to do with that?’ I asked.
Annabelle’s face seemed to frown then she nodded, ‘They were mean to you, so I was mean to them.’
‘No!’ I cried, ‘that’s not what I meant for you to do!’
‘Do you want me to stop?’ Annabelle asked.
I held back a breath and tears. The other girls were still picking on me, but things had started getting worse. They were upset their friends were gone and taking it out on me. A part of me wanted them all gone but what Annabelle was doing was wrong.
‘Say it. Tell me to stop and I will,’ Annabelle pressed.
‘You have to find a different way. Just scare them a little. That’s all. Promise?’
‘Yes,’ Annabelle answered and vanished.
Leaning back against a bookcase, I listened to the silence for a few moments then made my way back to bed.
The next evening, Sallie was found almost drowned in the bath. Sallie had held me down whilst the other girls had hit and kicked me. She was a big girl, so it was hard to imagine anything like that happening to her. They took her hospital and she went home afterwards, but was so traumatised she didn’t come back to school that year.
Pacing my room, I tried to reach out to any ghosts but there didn’t seem to be any around. I went bed, tried and sad. This was all my fault and I couldn’t figure out how to stop it. Perhaps it would be best just to end things with Annabelle. If we weren’t friends any more she’d have no reason to hurt the other two girls.
The next day was dull and rainy. The lessons were boring and I couldn’t think clearly. Everyone seemed emotional too and confused. What was going on around here that could cause three girls to have freak accidents in a row? The guilt hung over me like a storm and I couldn’t wait till the evening to speak to Annabelle.
I rushed to the library after my last class and even though it was busy, I wiggled my way into the reference section and called the ghost to me. It took awhile. I guess because ghosts are weaker during the day but also because she knew I was mad with her. When the mist appeared, I asked her why even before her form had time to settle.
‘It was a accident. I didn’t mean to hold her down for so long,’ Annabelle replied sadly.
‘She almost died!’ I hissed back.
‘I was only trying to help you. Didn’t you want that? Aren’t we best friends?’ Annabelle asked.
I shook my head, ‘not any more we aren’t. I never want to see you again and you stay away from the other two girls got it?’
Annabelle’s ghostly face flashed with anger and in a puff she was gone.
I felt better but the next night I was awoken by screams. Scrambling from my bed, I saw that the last two girls, Nadia and Paula had fallen down the grand staircase. They were badly hurt and both claimed a ghost girl had attacked them in the night and chased them till they had bumped together at the top of the stairs and fallen down.
No one believed them of course, expect for me and after that I never saw Annabelle again.