"And, I think we are ready," Dipper said as he stood up from his work. He stood in the middle of a ten-foot circle that he drew on the floor with chalk. They were all currently in the center of the living room of Jorge's house. The chalk might end up staining the carpet, but Dipper believed that Jorge would be grateful enough to not care when this was all over.
"Are you sure?" Pacifica asked as she adjusted the ring of sheets that encircled the perimeter of Dipper's chalk. "You said that we only have one shot at this."
"That I did say, and it's still true. But, this is our best option, and the trap is now set."
Jorge was kneeling in the corner with his back to them. His hands were clasped and he looked as if he was praying.
"Is he praying?" Pacifica whispered to Dipper as if she could read his mind. "Do you think that will even help?"
"I'll admit that I'm not the most religious thirteen-year-old," Dipper replied quietly, "But I've seen enough weirdness to not discount it yet. Besides, we'll need all the help we can get."
It was almost seven o'clock. The shadows were growing longer as the sun began to sink behind the mountains that surrounded the valley. Though, the sunset wasn't colorful. It wasn't a brilliant red or orange or pink as it normally was. It was just a dull, ominous grey. It was as if everything was covered in a shimmerless matte. No light was reflected, it was all absorbed into the world by dread.
"Do we have to do this at night?" Pacifica asked. "Why can't we do this during the day, when the sun so that, you know, things can't hide in the shadows?"
Dipper chuckled. "Believe me, I'm with you, but spirits have a higher activity at night. The BEST time to do this would be at three in the morning during the witching hour, but Grunkle Ford said that I had to be home by ten, though Stan could care less."
"Will he excuse your curfew if you bring back a ghost in a bottle?"
"Eh, probably, but I don't want to take that thing home. I just want to throw it into the fiery pits of Hell."
"Ooh! Can it be Viking Hel?"
"Actually, Viking Hel wasn't all that bad. It wasn't a place to torment the dead like christian hell. In fact, it was just generally a place that the dead continued to live out their time as if they were still alive. Eating, drinking, sleeping, fighting, et cetera."
"Aw," Pacifica whined, disappointed. Dipper laughed. It wasn't even a half-hearted laugh like you do in casual conversation, but a real laugh. One that he couldn't stop. He didn't know why. It wasn't even that funny. He just kept laughing. Finally, he calmed himself down, but he still heard laughing. He turned to see Pacifica also busting a gut, which only made him laugh harder! It wasn't that funny! Yet, they laughed anyway.
They were both interrupted by someone clearing their throat. This sound suddenly cleansed them of their laughter and they turned to see Jorge standing before them. "I am ready, he said."
"Okay," Dipper said. He stood just outside of the circle. The stuffed dog was in the center. Surrounding the outside of the sheeted perimeter sat several lit candles, providing the only light in the completely dark room. "Once its connection to the toy is severed, it will try everything it can to fully attach itself to you. You have to fight back from it for as long as we can. Block all emotion from it, and we can exorcise it. Are you ready to do this?"
Jorge nodded. Dipper could tell that he was still absolutely terrified by what was going on. But there was something else there. Determination? Courage, maybe? It was hard to tell, but Dipper had faith in the man.
"Okay. Now," Dipper said as he held his arm straight away from his body, his hand hovering a few feet above the toy, his hand was in a fist. "I'm going to do the number one thing that you should never do when you are dealing with a ghost." He opened his palm, revealing a small disposable lighter. He flicked it on. "I'm going to burn the anchor."
He dropped the lighter, and it fell towards the toy. As soon as he let go, it turned off and bounced off the toy's head.
"Dang. Stupid cheap lighters!" Dipper said as he bent over to pick it back up. "I was trying to make this dramatic." He struck the lighter's flint several more times, but it didn't light. "Come on. Come on. There we go." The small orange flame appeared at the top of the lighter, and Dipper held it to the toy's polyester fur. The fridges of it caught fire, and Dipper quickly stepped away.
The flame slowly engulfed the entire plush dog, and Dipper's EMF started going wild. An inhuman screech was heard throughout the house. Or was it in their heads? Dipper couldn't tell, but it sure as hell sent shivers down his back. From the top of the burning toy's head rose a black mass. It seemed to absorb the light around it rather than reflect it. It formed into the shape of a human silhouette, though it had no discernable features. It almost reminded Dipper of those Japanese shadow puppet plays. The figure whipped around its arms as if it was panicking.
"Okay, Jorge," Dipper said. He pulled a glass bottle of anointed water from his vest. He opened it, splashed a little bit on his hands, and blotted it on Jorge's face. "It's confused. Time to hit a home run.
Jorge stepped forward. With a large, commanding voice, he called out. "Spirit! You are no longer welcome here! I close myself off from you. I command you to leave here, now!" The shadow figure screeched and turned to Jorge.
"Pacifica, now!" Dipper yelled.
Pacifica, who was at the edge of the room, pulled a paracord that she was holding. As she did, the sheets surrounding the chalk circle gave away, revealing a ring of various objects, including photos of Jorge and his family, a few crosses, a bible, and even a few of Jorge's own childhood toys. Dipper assumed that Jorge was going for the symbolism of it all when he chose them, but really anything with a positive emotional tie would work.
As these things were revealed, the figure lunged towards Jorge but reeled back suddenly when they were fully uncovered. It's was as if the figure was repulsed by the objects.
"It's working!" Dipper yelled. "Keep going!"
"Leave this place! Now!" Jorge said firmly as he stared at the figure. The figure then lifted its head and stared back. Jorge faltered. "L-leave. You're not welcome here," he said with less authority.
"Remain strong, man! We are so close! Disconnect from it!"
The figure began to shift, though it held its stare, locking its undefined eyes with Jorge's. The figure grew shorter, and its body widened. It almost looked like… like it was wearing a dress. It was trying to be the little girl, again.
"Leave," Jorge said, though it wasn't much more of a whimper. "Leave please." He fell down onto his knees. "Please. P-please." No! They were so close! Jorge's losing it! "Please forgive me." Jorge bowed his head defeated.
The figure morphed again, growing in size, and swiped its now elongated arm across the circle, scattering the objects holding it at bay. It pulled its arm back, a boxer getting ready for his final blow, and lunged its arm forward. It hit Jorge in the chest, sending him flying backward. He landed against a bookcase, causing it to fall forward on top of him.
"No! Dipper yelled, and he moved to intervene, but with its free arm, the figure swiped Dipper across the body, flinging him into the wall. With its arm still connected to Jorge's chest, the figure started to slowly drag him towards it, its blackened maw awaiting its helpless prey. The tentacle seemed to pulse, a faint purple light leading from Jorge to the figure along its outstretched arm, fading as it traveled, still slowly pulling Jorge in close.
Dipper tried to get up, tried to come to Jorge's aid, but he couldn't. His leg was pinned under the giant oak shelving, and the weight of the heavy wood pressed down against his back. Man, he should really do more pushups. He struggled with all he had, but Dipper couldn't get free, and the figure just kept pulling the poor chauffeur closer.
Then, a blur of blonde and purple shot past Dipper. He couldn't discern what it was, but he didn't need to. Pacifica grabbed the obsidian vine that held her employee and pulled back, stopping Jorge's progress towards his demon.
"You will not take him!" She yelled, pulling on the tentacle. The figure faltered, but with a shallow screech, it pulled back harder, causing Pacifica to fumble forward a little bit. She quickly regained her footing and dug in her heels. "NO! You are no longer welcome here! No leave, or I will sue you for trespassing!" She yanked on the shadow tendril, causing the figure to lurch forward. The purple light that Dipper had noticed earlier had stopped pulsing down the arm and had instead started to pool behind the area where Pacifica was gripping, like water being built up in a hose when you stepped on it.
Pacifica and the shadow continued a mock tug-of-war, each not wanting to give up, but the figure was weakening. It was taking a lot of energy to maintain its form, and with its energy supply now physically cut off, it would start being drastic, like a rat trapped in a corner.
"Can't you hear me, shadow face? I am Pacifica Elise Northwest!" she yelled, her teeth grinding with strain and with determination. "This is my chauffeur! He is my friend! He is my family! You can't have him!"
The shadow figure's strength was fading. In a final effort, the figure pulled back and lowered itself on its haunches, ready to pounce.
"And I will do WHATEVER it takes to protect him!"
The figure lept forward, free arm outstretched to grab Pacifica. But she sidestepped, and in her place, she held a small, round pocket mirror. No, a silver mirror!
The figure tried to change direction midair, but it was too late. It hit the reflective glass, and it seemed to contort as it was pulled into the small, 5-inch plate of glass. It let out one last, futile screech as it was fully enveloped in the cosmetic tool, and Pacifica snapped the mirror close, cutting it off from its surroundings.
With the shadow figure gone, the room seemed to get brighter. The candles' seemed to be more illuminating, and the foreboding feeling no longer hung in the air.
"Pacifica! You did it!" Dipper cheered, still laying on his stomach.
"Silver compact," she said rather matter-of-factly. "Started carrying it with me after last year's party. Didn't think I'd actually have to use it."
"That's great. That's great," Dipper said, suddenly rather uncomfortable. "Uh, hey, can you by any chance help get this giant bookcase off of me?"
Pacifica walked over to the toppled bookcase and helped lift it just enough so that Dipper could shimmy his way lose. He stood up, dusted himself off, and hugged Pacifica. "That was amazing!" he said, pulling away.
Pacifica blushed a little. "Oh, pfff. I was just doing what you would do. Helping people, and all that," she said sheepishly.
Dipper chuckled. "Oh, no. I saw what you did, and all I can say is that I am immensely proud of you."
Pacifica gave a soft smile, looked into Dipper's eyes, her own glittering in the light of the candles, and started to lean forward. Their faces grew closer. Their eyes were locked Then, she promptly punched Dipper in the arm.
"Hey!" he cried, confused. "What was that for?"
"You know what that was for. Stop being right all the time!" she said, playfully. "It's annoying how much you believe in me."
From the other side of the room, they heard Jorge stir, coming back to consciousness. They both rushed to his side.
"Wha- what happened," he said, laying on his back and looking around. "Is it over?"
"It is," Dipper said. "It was Pacifica. She trapped the ghost."
Jorge grabbed both of Pacifica's hands and pulled them close to his chest. "Thank you, Lady Pacifica," he said, a tear rolling down his cheek. "I am finally free of that demon."
Dipper could tell that Pacifica naturally wanted to say something snarky and offputting, but she didn't. Instead, she replied with an honest and sincere "You're welcome, Jorge."
"Actually," Dipper cut in. "You aren't free of it yet. We have it trapped, but we still have to exorcise it."
"Yeah, I probably don't want to have a ghost jump out at me every time I want to put on my makeup," Pacifica said, holding her compact aloft.
Quickly, the trio set the rings in the center back up and set the mirror atop the ashed of the stuffed dog. They each stood in a triangle and Dipper opened the mirror. A dark shape could be seen pacing the glass.
"Okay, everybody ready?" Dipper asked. The others nodded, and they all held out their hands. As one, they spoke.
"Exodus Demonus. Spookus Scarus. Ainafraidus No Ghostus."
Slowly, a swirling, purple portal appeared over their heads. The mirror shimmered, and some invisible force lifted the spirit from the mirror and toward the portal.
"Bumpus Goosus! Shamalaaan!"
The figure entered the portal, and it suddenly vanished. A clap of wind swept the room, and the candles went out.
"Did it work?" Dipper heard Pacifica say.
Slowly, from the center of the circle, a soft yellow light appeared. It rose in the air and materialized, forming the shape of a little girl. It looked at Pacifica, gave a soft smile, and nodded. "Thank you," they heard her say. Then the light dissipated, and the candles relit.
"It worked," Dipper said, breathing a sigh of relief.
"We did it!" Pacifica cheered, jumping at Dipper and giving him a giant hug. Dipper just chuckled awkwardly.
"Yes. Yes, we did it!" Jorge said, the sound of his voice instantly causing Pacifica to part with the ghost hunter.
"Indeed we did," replied Dipper. He turned to Jorge. "So, how do you feel?"
"I-," Jorge began, examining his body and arms. "I feel great! As if a great weight was lifted off of my shoulders! I feel seven years younger! I-I want to go golfing!" He then looked to Pacifica. "That's it! Tomorrow, we go golfing! I will teach you beyond mini-golfing! Mr. Dipper can come too! My way of saying thanks to you and your boyfriend!"
Dipper held up a finger. "I don't actually play go-"
"He's not my boyfriend!" Pacifica cut in, face beat red.
"Oh, yeah. That too," Dipper said, his face completely unphased. "But, sure. I'd be willing to give it a shot." Pacifica shot him a look. "Golfing, I mean," he quickly added
"Perfect!" Jorge said. He then knelt down and looked into the kids' eyes. "Thank you, and bless you both. Thanks to you, I am finally free of this nightmare."
And that's it! The end of this fun little romp. Now for an explanation. Yes, this is indeed based on a true story. Now, it was from TV, so it might not be 100% true, but it still got to me.
So, I, like Dipper, do enjoy an occasional paranormal TV show, although I will go in spurts. One of my favorites is "Paranormal Caught on Camera" on the Use-to-be-about-Travel Channel. This one is fun because it isn't some overly dramatized night vision expedition with weird noises. It's mostly a show about videos from the internet that have paranormal things in them, and some researchers talk about it. This is where most of Dipper's ghost knowledge comes from in this story. I like it because it's just a weird thing with no explanation. Floating lights in the sky. A wisp of smoke regularly passing a security guard in an old-person home. Swingsets moving by themselves. It's all relatively low-harm, and it is very interesting.
However, there was this one episode, and the ghost in this story is beat-by-beat the same thing. A guy in Mexico city wakes up from a coma where he dreamed of a girl and a stuffed dog toy, the toy is next to him, he takes it home, and stuff moves around. The difference is that he is the one who confronts the ghost, and this is where the video comes in, for the scene that I described in Chapter 2 about the bedroom and the shadow in the corner and the banging on the door, that was all on video, and the figure is 100% visible in it. It was no corner of the frame thing, but right there. He then runs away, and the text on the screen says that the activity continues to persist.
I normally am not phased by paranormal shows, but this one got to me. I didn't sleep that night at all, and had the lights on all night for the next few nights. Just the visual of the room, the guy leaving, the door being banged upon, then the room a mess and the figure in the corner. It really did shake me. I guess that's why I decided to turn it into a fanfic. Maybe morphing this into a story where I can control what happens to my fears is my way of getting over it. Or maybe I just thought it was a good starting point. Who knows?
In any case, I hope you all enjoyed!