Ohh, is it Y?

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This is a story I heard from my friend Y. Y's grandad died about two years ago. Y loved his granddad almost too much, and at the funeral he cried like a baby, not caring that other people were watching.

It happened on the seventh day after his granddad's death. On that day there was a storm warning for the area where Y lived and in spite of the murderous wind Y didn't have enough money on him to take a bus and had to walk home from school. He struggled all the way to keep himself from blown away and it was already past seven in the evening when he finally arrived home. He took out the key from the bag and opened the front door.

As soon as he was in, he saw the door to his own room, which was visible from the front door, open, as if to welcome him. He could see from the opening that the light and the TV had been switched on, as well as the halogen heater, which was the sole source of heat in his room.

It must be mum. She was considerate enough to have my room warmed up before I got home. Y thought happily, and he called out to her in a voice more cheerful than usual.

But strangely, no one answered Y. He looked around the front door and noticed there was only one pair of shoes that belonged to Y (note:Japanese people leave shoes at the front door before entering the house) and neither his mum's nor dad's shoes were there. Then Y remembered everyone in the family apart from Y was going to be home late, due to them attending a memorial service that was being held for his granddad. Who could be home then? Y was afraid that it might be a burglar.

Y tiptoed to his room, and fearfully peeked inside through the door. In the room there sat Y's dead granddad with his back to the door. The moment Y realized that it was his granddad, his fear vanished into thin air. Y was the sort who could never watch horror movies without having someone beside him, but although he knew he was seeing a ghost it was different when the ghost was his granddad's.

Tears rushed to his eyes out of love and gratitude that his granddad cared enough about him to visit him even after death. Granddad gave a few of his characteristic coughs and clumsily scratched at the back of his head. "Granddad." When Y called, grandad slowly stood up and turned around. And as he turned, as if by a trick, the outline of his body became slightly blurred.

Granddad's face looked as if covered in red ink. "Oh...Oooh, Y. Is it Y?" Granddad called Y's name. The voice was as he remembered it, but the intonation was somewhat strange. It was too monotonous. Granddad used to speak with a strong accent, but his voice sounded artificial as if it had been computer-generated. Granddad took one feeble step towards Y. "What happened to you, granddad?" Y said, growing anxious because granddad was acting strange. Granddad again coughed a few times and scratched his head.

"Granddad, did you try to come home?" When Y asked, grandad looked up at the ceiling as if he was trying to think a little, and said; "Oh...Oooh, Y. Is it Y?," uttering exactly the same phrase and in the same intonation as before. Y found that disturbing, and began to think maybe what he was seeing in front of him was not his granddad at all. Granddad was still staring at the ceiling. From his fingers some purplish-red liquid trickled to the floor, making a small pool on the carpet. Moreover, when Y looked at him more closely, he noticed that granddad's arm was bent at an unnatural angle; and the length between the shoulder and the elbow was longer than a normal person's upper arm should be. Granddad wasn't like that at all when he was alive. Maybe this thing was something that was pretending to be his grandad.

Y slowly start to back away, being careful not to make any noises. Despite that the thing that was pretending to be his granddad seemed to have realized Y's intention and, stretching only its neck, he stared at Y. Oh no, it's looking at me - the moment Y thought it, the thing's face was right in front of him. Its body was still standing where it was; the only parts that moved were its head and neck. The neck was now like a over-stretched rubber band. Before his eyes, purplish-red bubbles formed around its mouth. "Oh...Oooh, Y. Is it Y?" Y screamed.

He ran for his life and took refuge in the nearest bookshop. He was scared to be alone in the house. He couldn't go back until the rest of the family was home, by which time it was past 9pm. He told them what happened to him but no one took him seriously.

That night he was forced to sleep in his own room, where the red granddad appeared. Y felt uneasy. Whenever he closed his eyes he feared that he would see that red face the moment he opened his eyes again. But in the end fatigue took the better of him and he fell asleep.

When he woke up the next morning, his face somehow felt itchy. He went to the bathroom and looked himself in the mirror; his face was wet with purplish-red juice.

From then on he stopped sleeping in his room. Because he wasn't sure if he could manage to escape like the last time if the thing appeared to him again.


To this day Y still says, "that was definitely not my granddad.

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