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This is a question Tales of the Unexplained

Flying saucers. Big Cats. Men in Black. Satan walking the Earth. Derek Acorah, also walking the Earth...

Tell us your stories of the supernatural. WoooOOOooOO!

suggestion by Kaol

(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 10:03)
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The landlord and his dog
I once knew a chap called Jim. Jim was a landlord who ran a small village pub with his wife Betty. They were a wonderful couple, always happy to see the locals and welcoming of strangers. The beer was always fresh, the crisps always in date and the beer mats were always clean. They were the perfect people to run a village pub. Betty unfortunately developed cancer some years ago and after a short battle with it, she sadly died.

Jim was devastated and spent the next few weeks inconsolable. He was barely able to function and the pub which he’d previously run like a military operation began to go to ruin. The concerned locals clubbed together to help him out and raised a few hundred pounds, which for the size of the village was quite remarkable. With the money, we purchased a black Labrador puppy.

When we presented the dog to Jim, he was visibly moved. He'd always kept dogs before marrying Betty, but she was allergic to their hair so he wasn't able to have one for nearly thirty years. He quickly grew much attached to Lucy, as he named her, taking her out to the nearby woods for walks at every opportunity. We'd often see him and the dog down by the stream, sitting contentedly, just enjoying each other’s company.

Having Lucy around changed Jim's outlook on life again. The bar returned to its usual state and the locals were all relieved to see him polishing the brasses, changing the drip trays and measuring the optics with his previous aplomb. For the next four years, each night, when the bell rang for last orders, everyone knew he'd be in good company with Lucy watching over him.

Then the accident happened. Jim was returning from his evening stroll with Lucy by his side after closing time one night, as always. He'd noticed a car coming fast along the narrow country lane, but Lucy was fascinated by a squirrel she'd spotted. Jim shouted to Lucy but she didn't hear him, or didn't care. She ran into the road and the car rounded the bend, crushing the dog and killing her instantly.

The locals once again faced a dilemma. Jim was so upset they felt they could perhaps get Lucy’s body stuffed, but the damage from the accident was so severe that the only part of her body that wasn't completely mangled was the tail. Being country folk, we didn't see anything weird or macabre about getting just the tail preserved, so we asked a taxidermist to attach Lucy's tail to a wooden plinth. This grisly trophy was then presented to Jim, who seemed rather touched by the gesture, even if it was a bit strange by some standards...

The first week was fine. Jim returned to his routine of keeping the bar in pristine condition and we all appreciated the return to form. However, after a few weeks, he seemed a little pre-occupied. He kept looking up to the tail, mounted on its stand above the door. The regular customers all noticed that Jim spent as much time staring at the tail as he did serving drinks. It was about that time when he beckoned me over to whisper in my ear "chart cat, that tail... it's bloody haunted!"

I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Here was my lifelong friend, a venerable tower of sensibility, muttering ghostly allusions to me over the bar? It didn't make any sense at all. I laughed at first, but his expression told me he was, quite literally, deadly serious. I asked him what he meant, and he replied "Every night since that thing was hung on my wall, right after the stroke of 11 O’clock, I hear a dreadful howling noise. It's Lucy, for sure. The whining gets louder and louder, until I take the tail down from the wall, then it stops”

I wanted to hear it for myself. I trusted Jim like everyone else in the village, but this was too much to digest. We sat together after the bell for last orders rang and the customers filtered out one by one and we waited.... and waited... then sure enough, a terrible, distant wailing noise began to permeate the pub. The glasses rattled on the shelves as the sound of a dog pining grew louder and louder. I composed myself, unable to reconcile what had just happened. Jim quietly turned to me and said "I think I know what the problem is".

Lucy was buried in the woods near to the road where she died. Jim took down the tail from the wall and asked me to walk with him to the spot where she lay. We walked together, me carrying a torch and Jim carrying Lucy's tail, still mounted on the wooden presentation stand. It would have looked quite ridiculous to anyone noticing us, but it was late and we were in the middle of a sleepy village. We made our way through the thick bracken and spiky hawthorn bushes to a small clearing.

Lucy's grave was still visible, although leaves and branches had since fallen over the disturbed earth. Jim asked me to hold the tail while he started digging. Then I realised what he was going to do. He dug down, deeper and deeper until finally we heard a *thunk* as he hit the wooden box inside which she had been buried.

He lifted the casket out of the ground and brushed away the dirt. The inscription etched into the wood read "my beloved Lucy, faithful companion, dearly missed - Jim". As he kneeled there, looking mournfully at his departed friend, we heard the chilling sound of Lucy's howls penetrate the calm night air once again.

"She wants her tail" he said. I nodded, still unable to believe that we were standing in the woods, listening to the yowls of a dead dog. "I can't do it" he said. I nodded again, trying to empathise with Jim, but I quickly came to the inevitable conclusion staring at both of us. “Look Jim, if that is Lucy howling then it's never going to stop, until you put that tail in the box with the rest of her". He looked at me and gave a look of resignation. "I just can't do it though". I stood there for a moment, considering the emotions he must have been feeling, but the howling was almost deafening at this point. I urged him to put Lucy’s tail in her casket, but with tears in his eyes he croaked “I want to, but I really can’t do this”

"Why not?" I asked, perplexed by his stubborn refusal...

...."because it's illegal to re-tail spirits after 11pm" he replied.

This tale is quite a bit longer than Lucy's. Apologies for length :-D
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 16:46, 18 replies)
Oh dear lord.

I quite liked that, despite myself.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 16:54, closed)
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 16:58, closed)
bone chillingly
hilarious, I actually laughed at this one, rather than just grinning like with most of the puns on here
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:01, closed)
oh christ...

EDIT: Pooflake, take note. You now officially have competition.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:08, closed)
for the first couple of paragraphs you had me!
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:14, closed)
*takes a good run up*
*SPANG* you fucker *clicks*
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:18, closed)
In the 'real world'..
...this story would get you a kick in the nuts, then a pint.

Good work sir. I clicky liked.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:40, closed)
Ha, ha, ha
You utter cunt *spang*
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:42, closed)
This is
just brilliantly brilliant!
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 17:59, closed)
You had me right up until the last line! *click*
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 18:07, closed)
Very good
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 18:45, closed)
Fucking genius
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 19:14, closed)
My mam....
...told me this one (or at least, the same joke with slightly different details, and not told as a real story) back when I was a wee bairn!
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 23:18, closed)
Bloody 'ell
that's clever. Or I'm gullible. Actually, both.
(, Fri 4 Jul 2008, 0:06, closed)
@Lord of Balrogs
Yep, I first heard it when I was 10 or 11 on a school trip. My teacher rounded everyone up after a trip into some woods and began telling ghost stories. This one stuck in my head.

I've added plenty of padding, but it's essentially the same story with the same spang-worthy ending :-)
(, Fri 4 Jul 2008, 0:08, closed)
Oh my goodness
I've heard this joke several times before, but the entire narrative of the tale had be glued to it and the ending was completely unexpected.

Very well done, I'll just go get a frying pan.
(, Fri 4 Jul 2008, 15:43, closed)
Nice work!
You win sir!
(, Fri 4 Jul 2008, 20:39, closed)
(, Sat 5 Jul 2008, 20:35, closed)

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