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REAL GHOST STORIES (Collected and Edited by William T. Stead) online

REAL GHOST STORIES by William T. Stead

Chapter II. Warnings Given in Dreams.

"Goodness what is wrong with you," said I, looking round in every direction to see what startled him but could see nothing.

"'O dear, dear! what a horrid dream I have had,' said he. 'A dream,' said I. 'My' I thought you had seen a ghost or something by the spring you gave.'

"'Well! you would spring too if you could and you drowning.' Then he told me that he thought it was the 28th of December and there was such a storm he had never seen anything like it in his life before. 'We were crossing the loch at the ferry,' said he. 'We had the big white boat and four oars on her. Big David the keeper Donald the ferryman you and I. And man but it was awful. The boat right up on end at times every wave washing over us and filling the boat more and more, and no way of bailing her, because no one could let go his oar, you and I were on the weather side, and Big David and Donald on the other, they of course had the worst of it, we got on until we were near the other side, the waves were getting bigger and the boat getting heavier, we were going to run for the creek, when she was struck by a huge wave that filled her up to the seats and sent David and Donald on their backs, they lost their oars, and the next wave came right over her and down she went. The other two never were seen, you and I came up and tried to swim to the shore, you got near enough to catch a rope that was thrown you, but I could not get through the tremendous waves and was just going down when I awoke with such a start.'

"'My what a frightful dream,' said I. 'I should not like to have such a dream although I do not believe in dreams or Ghosts or these things it was the rain falling on your face did it.'

"'Well! maybe it was' said he, but all the same I could see he was thinking a good deal about it all night, although I tried to laugh him out of it. Well time passed until about the beginning of December there was heavy rain. Murdoch went home to see his wife and family as all the rivers were flooded and there was no need of watching. He was on his way back to his work on the evening of the next day, when he got to the ferry, it was raining and blowing like to blow the breeks off a Hieland man as they say. 'Dear me Murdoch,' said Donald the ferryman, 'you surely, don't mean to go out to-night.'

"'It is very stormy,' said Murdoch, 'if you would be so kind as come over for me at six o'clock in the morning I would go home again I must be down passed the Governor's before he gets up you know.'

"'Oh! I'll do that for you Murdoch,' said Donald. So Murdoch went home again that night and next morning by six o'clock he was at the ferry again. 'Well done, Donald. You are a man of your word,' said he, as he saw what he thought was Donald on the pier waiting him with his boat along side,--the morning was calm and fair though pretty dark, he thought it strange Donald did not answer him, but hurrying down the pier was about to step into the boat, when he felt someone strike him a violent blow on the ear with the open hand. Looking sharply round he was astonished to find no one near, but he thought as he turned round he had seen a dark shadow disappear in the distance.