A Secret Grave 3: A Strange Disturbance

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While Ramona was snooping on her husband in far south Austin, she received a call from my next door neighbor reporting suspicious activity at my house – there’d been an “event” of some sort, the dogs were barking like crazy, and the entire house was plunged in darkness. Picturing the worst, Ramona drove like a bat out of hell from Creedmoor, seventeen miles away, to North West Hills where I live. But as she roared into the cul-de-sac, she saw the lights were on, shining bright as day.

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House Lit Up

In the house, Yann Coeuru, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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She ran inside and checked the house completely. Everything was in its place and seemed normal. No sign of a break-in, no sign of a power outage, no sign that the alarm system had been tampered with. The three dogs were a little edgy, it was true, but that was often the case after they’d been cooped up on their own for awhile. She went outside and walked the whole property. The gate to each yard was locked and in the back, where framing was going up for the studio, things seemed in order – plastic sheeting draped over part of the structure, smells of wood and freshly poured concrete filling the air. The only thing that struck her as unusual was the behavior of the dogs who became very agitated as they circled the studio area, barking, sniffing, even whining as they tried to claw through the plastic sheeting.

“I had to drag them inside and lock them up,” she told me two weeks later, recounting the incident. “I was afraid they’d leave footprints all over the concrete.”

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dog prints in cement

Dog Prints, Jeremy Schultz, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

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Here’s what the neighbor told Ramona when she went next door to question her: at nine PM when she took her lab for a walk, the outdoor floodlights of my house were on, as usual, and there was no sign of abnormal activity. When she returned half an hour later, the dogs were barking menacingly from inside the house and there was a truck of some sort – perhaps a cement mixer? – parked in my courtyard driveway. But all lights had been extinguished so it was hard to tell what was going on in the pitch black darkness. Just to be cautious, she called Ramona.

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man in woods

Mikhail Kryshen, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/

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Well, that was weird. Ramona tends to exaggerate, as does my neighbor, so at the time I blew the story off as a little bit of drama on both their parts. Now I wonder.

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To be continued…

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Cover Photo ~ PreMade BG 74, Brenda Clarke, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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