The Haunted House

This is the story of how curiosity seduced my friends and I to an expedition on Pulau Ubin, Singapore, to see the infamous haunted house. I cannot tell you the exact location of the house, which looks more like a hut, but I can tell you that I have seen it before.

Now, Pulau Ubin is an island off Singapore, but do not expect sandy beaches and vacationers here. It is dominated by a dense forest although now laced with trails and paths, and makes for a good camping ground if not for one thing. Pulau Ubin is infested with numerous haunted stories. Not many would ever choose to stay overnight here. Although organized camps are arranged here, they are only meant for military or school groups whose only goal is to toughen up their recruits. Apart from that, it is not a popular place for overnight stays.

It took us the whole afternoon to reach the supposed haunted house. We were challenged to enter and after some deliberation, we decided to seize the moment. We crept forward with both fear and excitement in our hearts. The house itself was in rather good conditions. It was not completely run down but you could tell that the last residents left quite some time back. Even so, the door squeaked a little louder than necessary as if warning us not to enter. But we swallowed our fears and trudged on inside.

The house opened up to a room meant for only one person. Simple furniture made out of wood were scattered around. It smelled musty with a heavy layer of dust and cobwebs peaked out at us from certain corners. We explored the place and saw nothing.

After satisfying our curiosity, we decided to leave. It was at that precise moment that we felt a strong gust of wind inside the house. The hairs on our necks stood up, as if someone (or something) was watching and waiting for us to make the wrong moves. We stood still and waited. Nothing. We took another step forward and one of our friends suddenly cried out.

Something touched me,?she said.

Stay calm. It was probably just your imagination,?another said.

It was only a few steps toward the door but it suddenly felt really far. We felt claustrophobic and the air was getting colder by the minute. In the next few seconds, our breaths were icy cold with smoke coming out from our mouths. It was unnerving. Remember, this is Singapore, a tropical paradise not an icy glacier.

The temperature seemed to drop really fast and we were starting to shiver uncontrollably. We couldn’t speak and our throats became very dry, as if we had not had water in days. We knew that we had to get out…fast! We made it to the door but it would not budge. We tried kicking and pushing, but to no avail.

I think we’re in deep shit!?I said.

The trick is to remain calm,?someone said.

Easy for you to say. You brought us here!?cried another frantically.

Hey, isn’t that a window??someone spoke up.

We scrambled as fast as our wobbly legs could bring us to the window, which was on the far end of the room. It was wedged tight but we pushed with all our might and with prayers in our mind. In a stroke of luck, we managed to open it wide enough for the smallest person in our group to climb out. She ran to the door and tried opening it. And it opened without any difficulty.

Needless to say, we rushed out and basked in the glorious warmth of the sun. However, dusk was fast approaching and we had no desire to remain trapped in that old house. All we wanted to do was flee. We did not want to imagine what it would be like once darkness settled in.

The journey back to the jetty was twice as fast and we only managed a forced laugh on the ferry back to mainland Singapore. Suffice it to say that we never attempted another dare at Pulau Ubin although we did continue trekking around the island. All done in broad daylight, of course…

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