Subject Names: Lillian Gonzales, Edwin Gonzales, Mike, Joshua, Katie, Eleanor Gavazzi
Subject Location: Gardner, Massachusetts
Lillian Gonzales had adored the old Victorian house for as long as she could remember. When the house was finally on the market, she and her husband Edwin went to take a look. It was unbelievably affordable, and Edwin had to ask why. Was there something structurally wrong with such a beautiful place? No, there were rumors of the house being haunted. Ed and Lillian did not believe in ghosts. They took advantage of the great opportunity, and bought the house.
No sooner had they moved in than the house made itself known. Ed thought it sounded like the chimney collapsing. But, before they could investigate that theory, something went through and knocked Lillian's breakables off of the shelves where she'd just unpacked them. Convinced someone was in the house, Ed went down into the basement to investigate. There, he found an enormous old water cistern. Lillian couldn't help but think it was easily big enough for a child to drown in.
About six months after they moved in, Mike, a neighbor, was coming home from an evening run. While he rested on his porch, he watched as the Gonzales house put on a light show of its own. Windows lit like the UFO in the scene at the end of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. It reminded Mike of a child running around and playing. And when he saw a young boy in a window afterward, he was sure the kid was behind it. Although, when he spoke with Ed the next day? Ed assured him they didn't have any children.
Another neighbor and her son, Joshua moved in across the street. Joshua was instantly intrigued by the boy he saw in the window. He begged Katie, his mom, to allow him to play with the child. When Katie took him over to introduce themselves to Edwin and Lillian, Joshua was skeptical of Lillian's comment that they didn't have a son. He'd seen the boy. And the boy wanted to play with Joshua.
Banging pipes; rattling and opening doors; a child's footsteps running across an upstairs floor; containers disappearing in front of Lillian's face; something was definitely making itself known. Still, Ed and Lillian went on with their lives. Lillian thought the sounds were of a child trying to find its mother to play. The wallpaper strips she found while working in the kitchen being arrayed in a nice pattern on the floor when she returned from grabbing the laundry might have supported her thoughts. She tried talking to the child's spirit, asking it to touch her, but she only triggered a decidedly non-childlike sound that scared her to death.
Joshua, in the meantime, became obsessed with being outside. He would sit on his bike and stare at the Gonzales' house. He wasn't the same happy-go-lucky kid that had moved into the apartment across the street. His mother, Katie, took him over to the Lillian's house, thinking that if Joshua saw that there was no little boy to play with his anxious behavior would subside. When they arrived, Joshua immediately ran upstairs to where he'd seen the little boy. There was nobody else there. Joshua's insistence that this was where the little boy wanted him to come and play had been enough for Katie. She packed them both up and moved away.
Shortly thereafter, Lillian was attacked in her bed by the house. But it wasn't the little boy. Lillian believed it was the little boy's mother. On another night, Edwin woke up in the wee hours of the night and found Lillian digging furiously in the basement. She only stopped when she realized she had the pelvic bone of a small child in her hands. It was what she had been compelled to dig for.
Consulting a local historian, they discovered that in the 1960s, the house had been used as a boarding house/brothel. Working together, they determine that the ghost who'd attacked Lillian was likely one of the prostitutes. The little boy was probably her son, who had possibly died in that very cistern that Lillian had been worried about. Edwin and Lillian moved out of the house, but they still own it. To this day, it remains vacant.