The Strange Call
I’ll tell you a story related to me by an old neighbour. This one is going to be lengthy due to the fact that it’s supposed to be true, so if you want listen to it, please sit back, lock your door and pay attention.
This old lady, I think about 70+ at that time, used to have a small shop in the Bugis area (selling what, I’m not exactly sure up to this day) but anyway, this is her frightening and truly horrifying story.
Please do not read on if you are easily afraid. if you think you are scared please leave now before I share the story with you. This is your last chance.
OK, here goes.
This old couple in their 70′s, the old lady and her frail skinny husband, had this shop; I don’t know exactly what they sold, but I heard they had it for a good part of their lives. It was in one of those pre-war shops in Bugis, probably one of those dark and danky units that no one bothered to patronise, but since rent was cheap, they just hung on to it, I guess. They did not have any other family members I think. I had never seen anyone visit them. Anyway, this is her strange and frightening tale. Even relating it now makes the hair on my arms stand.
The old man, her husband, was very frail and was always in bed. He was always vomitting, and as a result, he was lying in bed most of the time. (in the olden days, there was this enameled tin spitton old ppl used to put under their beds, and he vomitted into it). Anyway, their house always looked very ‘Yin’ – very dark, very danky, and had a very musty and moldy smell. It always seemed very dark inside, even during the day. And during the night, there always seemed to be ppl talking or mumbling throughout the night along the corridor of their house. I always thought that it was the old couple who’d come out to sit outside their house and talk and grumble, but I never confirmed that because we always closed the door at night, although I have always wondered if it could be someone else, but I doubted it as it happened on a regular basis during the night, so I thought it was most probably them. Furthermore we didn’t have those peep holes in the front door back then.
Anyway, the old lady said that one day during the Chinese Seventh Month, a black cobra went into their shop and stood up at the shop entrance. She panicked and grabbed a stick and killed it. The next day another black cobra appeared, this time it went inside the shop and stood up. Again she killed it with the stick. It was unbelievable that two identical cobras could appear in her shop two consecutive times and be killed so easily. Even though she was frightened, she thought is was very strange. Then one night, exactly seven days after she had killed the second snake, she received a strange phone call and a male voice told her that his friends visited the shop but the shop was closed. He asked when he could visit the shop. She told him that they were open every day.
The male voice did not say who he was or what he wanted, but just told her about his friends’ unsuccessful visit. She put down the phone after that. On the second night the phone rang again and the same male voice told her that he was coming down personally and asked her if he could come at night. She was puzzled why this person wanted to come at night, but told him that he could do so since they closed quite late. He said he wanted to return something to her husband. So she asked him for his name and he told her. When it was night time, the man who spoke on the phone did not turn up. So the old lady was puzzled and asked the husband if he expected anyone to return anything to him. He said no and asked her whom she was expecting. She told him the name given to her over the phone by the strange caller. The old man was shocked. Because he knew the name and that person had died many years ago. And it was only after they related back to the mysterious incidents that the old man told the old woman this:
The man who had already passed away had two tattoos of a black cobra on each side of his back.