The very first ghost
This story is (not) true. This is probably the most ridiculous ghost story ever written. But still, it is how the first ghost came to be.
The ghost himself (or itself since in all reality Ghosts can not procreate but then since they still have their personalities and history, I guess it’s ok to ascribe sexuality to them).
Long long ago there was a relatively quiet man that died when he was middle aged. Which is really equivalent to people living to their eighties now if you consider that people died relatively early in those days due to a host of factors from disease to war.
This man died and was buried by his relatives in the village’s big burial ground.
The burial was low key, he was mourned for a month or two and people went on with their lives as should be: it’s just the cycle of life. Time heals all wounds and brings forgetfulness.
But while this man was alive he had a particular cousin that could talk the hairs off a live dog. For some strange reason, while the deadman lived, he had been the only one that seemed able to abide the other fellow’s nonstop chatter. The truth was that because he was a blacksmith which was more or less solitary work, he had not objected to the chatter-mouth cousin’s nonstop talking while he worked. The fellow appeared to require no responses and they seem to have arrived at some arrangement that suited both parties to the relieve of all the other people in the little village.
The talker somehow acquired news and scandals happening in the little village so people didn’t mind going to the blacksmith’s workshop to listen to him for a while before moving on. This probably benefited the blacksmith a little because with more foot traffic came additional business.
Well, after the blacksmith died, the cousin was the most miserable of all. He himself couldn’t have explained why he missed the blacksmith so much, but the truth was that it was the acceptance of the blacksmith he missed. He had a place to go and practice his “art” with at least one human being who at least didn’t seem to mind his nonstop talking even though he secretly believed the blacksmith wasn’t really listening to him (which in reality was the case).
So after a couple of weeks of wandering around the little village and being chased out of every house and shop when the occupants could no longer stand him, he wandered across the village cemetery and decided he might as well pay a visit to the grave of his recently departed cousin – the blacksmith. Well, he soon made himself comfortable and started talking at the headstone which had a bust of the blacksmith as if he were actually addressing the real person. He went on all day and only went home when the moon came out.
The following day he tried a few places and after he got the boot, he headed to the cemetery.
By the end of the week, he didn’t even bother with the townsfolk anymore, he just headed straight to the cemetery where he talked and talked and talked.
Now it is common knowledge that the dead have no awareness of anything. Which is true. Death is like a permanent sleep.
Well. The blacksmith might have been asleep but at some level the continuous droning of his live cousin six feet on top started filtering into his subconscious if you can call it that.
He literarily started turning in his grave. In reality, it was his ghost that started turning since the body was mostly decomposed. After several weeks of this semiconscious discomfort he suddenly became aware. The first thing he heard of course was his cousin’s voice. The man had succeeded in disconnecting the cord that binds the ghost to the deceased’s body.
The ghost who could no longer sleep found itself drifting to the surface where he of course found his cousin holding his one-man play of unlimited words. Not fully realizing his state, he tapped the cousin on the shoulder and the latter literarily fell off the grave. But after seeing that it did not appear that the ghost would hurt him, he was soon welcoming the dead cousin on his return from the dead.
The ghost wasn’t impressed.
“You know. If this goes on much longer I am going to have to find another grave. Your continuous chattering is wearing on my nerves”
The cousin was shocked and hurt.
“I thought you didn’t mind!”
“Well. Then I didn’t. I had other things to distract me. My job for example. But here, all I can do is wait for judgement day so I can have everlasting peace at last ”
“When is that?” He asked the dead man.
“No idea. Just go away and do no wrong.”
“I do no wrong already.”
“Good for you. Now go away and you are all set!”
“But I don’t have anyone to talk to in the whole village! You are my only friend!”
“Well. I wouldn’t exactly say we are friends. Relatives yes, but friends might be stretching the truth a little.”
But after a while the ghost relented and agreed to a visit of a few hours everyday. He considered that it couldn’t be too bad and it was something to do besides sleeping perpetually especially now that he was awake. He had looked in a few of the other graves and the occupants were still fast asleep and he was loathe to wake them up.
The arrangement seemed to work out well for the two of them. Everything went well for quite some time at least from the point of view of the ghost. But then over time the live cousin started to get dissatisfied with the allocated time. He still wanted to talk whereas the ghost kept time like a clockwork. One day after such a session, the live cousin he a little bit away and sat on another gravestone while grumbling to himself. It suddenly hit him that he could very well repeat the same steps he did with his cousin on any one of the hundreds of graves in the cemetery.
He thought he would have better luck with the recently deceased so he hunted around for a fresh grave. Soon he was seated and chatting away to whoever was “down” there.
The ghost soon noticed the cousin wasn’t as eager as before to hang around once his time was up.
It wasn’t long before he “woke” up the occupant of the new grave.
He of course told his new “friend” about his dead cousin. When he showed up the next day, he found the two of them hanging out together. He in effect had the same amount of time with them as he had when it was only his cousin. He decided to cast his net wider. Soon he was visiting about five graves per day.
But same as there is a grumpy in every seven dwarfs, there was at least one grumpy occupant of a grave in the cemetery. He took offense at being woken up. He complained about it to all the other ghosts who were up before him. He complained loudly over and over whether or not anyone was listening. He was going at it one such night when a couple of people happened to be passing by. When they came face to face with him and saw his transparent form, they ran away screaming. He was perplexed at first but then he repeated it a few more times and got very similar results. That became his past time and his disposition soon improved.
Time passed and the cousin grew old and was buried in the same cemetery. His friends soon came to wake him up. Apparently ghosts can’t wake up unless someone or another ghosts wakes them up.
To end this long winded story, the grumpy ghost soon introduced his favorite past times to the others and in the absence of anything better to do, more and more ghosts started scaring people. Over time, the reason for scaring people got lost and now ghosts just do it.
Note: I don’t believe in ghosts.