By: Aya Paredes
I had a classmate in college who now works as a full-time DJ in a local FM station . It was during our get -together last September when he shared to us his spooky encounter which happened to him October 31 of last year.
Dwayne has been a Dj in this FM station for six years now. The radio station is located in one of the oldest buildings in Ortigas. Typically, Dwayne’s shift starts from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. thought that particular night was different. It was actually his day off so Dwayne was not expecting the station manager to call him that day to inform him that he had to go sit in for another DJ who won’t be able to go to work because he had to go home to the province for Halloween, Dwayne wasn’t too excited by the news. He knew that the night could be boring. Most of the DJ’s in this time slot would just load on a list of songs without much of the usual talking and this would definitely bore dwayne. He’s very know to his listeners as a “big talker” No dull moments if he’s on board. That night was the first time in his entire DJ career that he had to board on a night shift. He was unfamiliar with the silence that greeted him when he parked his car at the basement of the old building. Usually, he had to fight off other tenants for a parking space but the underground parking that night was deserted. The stillness of the night scared him. He tried to shrug off the eerie feeling and walked purposefully to the elevator. He passed the button to the 16th floor. The elevator ride was unusually slow, Dwayne thought. When it finally opened on his floor, he was surprised to see that only the small incandescent lights on both sides of the corridor were lit. Did the station manager made a mistake in giving me the schedule for tonight? Maybe the station was already closed! These thoughts ran in his mind as he surveyed the 16th floor for a sign of life. But they are on-air 24/7! He was still near the elevator door uncertain is he should proceed to his booth when a cold hand grabbed his left shoulder. “Aahh!” Dwayne screamed, shaking off the cold hand from his shoulder. When he saw whose hand was it, he gave out a relieved laugh. It was just their janitor, Mang Gerry. “Nandito na pala kayo, Boss,” Gerry quipped. ” Kayo po pala ang kapalit ni Boss Ricky ngayong gabi.”
“Mang Gerry, tinakot mo naman ako! kailan kayo nakabalik? Hindi ba ilang linggo na kayong naka-leave?” He was happy to see Mang Gerry, who has worked for the station as a janitor as long as Dwayne could remember. The old man had been absent from work for three weeks. He was reportedly ill.
“Ah, Mang Gerry, kailan kayo nakabalik?” he asked the janitor. He could see the sadness in Mang Gerry’s eyes. He was used to the Mang Gerry who was talkative, lively and generally a happy person. Maybe he’s just tired or maybe he’s still recuperating from his illness. Dwayne was waiting for Mang Gerry to answer his question when he heard his mobile phone ring. He fished out his phone from his backpack. Just as he was about to answer his phone, he saw that Mang Gerry had left. He just caught a glimpse of Mang Gerry’s back exiting the door towards the pantry. He just shrugged off what happened and went back to his mobile. It was his manager asking if he was already on board. He replied saying he was about to and proceeded to his work station. To gain listeners, Dwayne decided he would follow his usual format on his afternoon show. He would ask listeners to call and answer his chosen topic. Since it was after all the night before Halloween, he decided to settle on the paranormal as his topic.
To Dwayne’s amazement, the dull late night show became lively and energetic. The phone never stopped ringing. The topic was about ghosts and other paranormal phenomena. Many callers expressed their doubt and disbelief saying it’s just a product of one’s imagination. A few were believers and related their true scary stories. There was one call though that caught Dwayne’s attention. The caller was a woman named Rhea. She said she believed in ghosts and she was used to seeing them all the time. Dwayne was doubtful with all the stories Rhea related on air. He was in trigued though when Rhea said she lived near the radio station and she was willing to tell all of her encounters on-air. Thinking this would gain him more listeners, Dwayne invited the girl to come to the station to be his guest for the next two hours of his board work. The girl on the othe line simply said yes and hung up. Thinking it was all just a joke. Dwayne continued on accepting phone calls from listeners. About 15 minutes had passed, Dwayne was busy accepting calls in between songs when the door opened. He thought it was Mang Gerry but was surprised to see a pretty girl. She was about 22 years old, fair, with big sad eyes and long, black hair. There was something odd about the girl but Dwayne could not quite tell what exactly it was that unnerved him upon seeing the girl. He asked who she was and she told that she was Rhea, the caller, Dwayne invited her in and asked her to sit in the sofa in front of the booth.
After a song, Dwayne introduced his visitor to his listeners. After that, there were a lot of phone in questions all wanting to asked the guest. He asked Rhea to sit near the board and handed her a microscope. She gamely answered many phone-in questions despite the presence of rude callers telling her that she’s just a complete joke. Dwayne felt relieved when the gap came and he had to playtwo to three songs. He felt it would unfair if he let Rhea stay any longer when it was already late. He thanked her and said she was great with the phone-in questions. She just smiled and thanked him back. She told Dwayne that she could feel that he didn’t believe her. “What? No. I mean we all have doubts but you do seems to be genuine.” “What can I do to make you believe?” Rhea caught him off-guard with this question.
“Nothing actually. Ok, just to end this, when was the last time you saw a ghost?” “Just today,” Rhea answered, almost like a whisper. She tilted her head and her long hair covered her face. She seemed to be crying. “There’s this girl, a call center agent. She was about to come home from work when Three unknown guys grabbed her and raped her. She was stabbed to death. Then one of the suspects poked at the girl’s left eye.” Rhea continued sobbing.
“That’s terrible! Did the ghost of the girl tell you who the suspects were? Have you gone to the police?” Dwayne couldn’t believe what he was hearing. If Rhea’s story were true, she could be instrumental in solving a crime!
He looked at Rhea intending to suggest going to the police but what he saw skin crawl. Rhea’s face was controlled, almost impossible for a face to twitch at such an angle. Then he saw that her left eye socket was empty! Blood oozed out from the empty socket. Her white blouse was drenched with blood. She was the ghost, she was the rape victim “Please help me!” She started to stand up from her seat and went straight to Dwayne. He screamed like a girl, he pushed his chair hard, ran for the door straight to the elevator. He panicked when he realized that the elevator was still on the third floor. He looked for the emergency exit but the door was locked. He remembered Mang Gerry. He called his name out loud but there was no answer. He ran to the pantry, opened the door, and almost fainted. Mang Gerry was talking to the ghost of Rhea. They both smiled at him, Rhea still had an empty eye socket. Mang Gerry on the other hand, was black and blue all over. They were both walking towards him, their arms open as if wanting to embrace him. Dwayne mustered all his will, ran towards the elevator and repeatedly pushed the bottom. He saw that the elevator was on the 13th floor. Three more floors! Oh God, hurry! please, help me! He saw the pantry door slowly opening, he could see the two ghosts emerging from it, then all too suddenly, the elevator door opened! Dwayne ran inside and pushed the ground floor button and the emergency button so he can alert the security guards downstairs. Just as the elevator door was about to close, two arms came in and grabbed his clothes. He put up a fight tearing the arms that were pulling him out of the lift. At last, he was able to free himself from the two forces.
It was the longest elevator ride ever. Dwayne was panting from the struggle. He passed out in the elevator. When he regained his consciousness, he was already at the front desk, two guards were helping him on a chair. One of them handed him a cup of coffee. He asked them what happened, the guards told him that he was found unconscious inside the elevator. He told them what happened, the two guards just looked at each other but never spoke a word about it. They assisted Dwayne back to his car until he left the building. The next day, Dwayne’s station manager scolded him. Apparently the station was on dead air, the whole evening until early morning. Dwayne still reported to work the next afternoon. It was then that he learned that Mang Gerry died two weeks ago. Dwayne swore off night shifts from then on.