Alternate Universe "Monarch of the Glen"
Main Character: JD and the rest of the guys
Thanks KT for letting me play in your wonderful AU.
As usual the men of Glenneaval moved to the living room after their evening meal to talk and discuss plans for the next day.
"So JD, how was your trip to town with Casey? Anything interesting happen?" asked Vin with a grin on his face.
"Nothin' much," JD said noticing the look on Vin's face. "Who said something? Was it Casey? Oh no, did she say something to Nettie?"
"Now JD," said Buck moving to sit next to JD on the couch and putting his arm around the teenager. "Sounds like maybe there's a story here. So...how're things going with Casey?"
"Buck! It's nothing like that," snarled JD as he squirmed out of Buck's hold.
"Now, Son, confession is good for one's soul," advised Josiah in his soothing rumble.
"JD," said Chris, raising one eyebrow while Ezra and Nathan watched quietly.
"Fine! It's really nothing, but I may as well tell you myself so you'll know it's no big deal. I was just wandering around the town while Casey had her appointment and I ended up at those old chapel ruins. I still can't believe how old stuff is here. Casey said that church was destroyed in the early 1400's; we don't have anything like that back hom...back in the states. Hey, it's unreal how so many of those old grave stones have the name Ross on them; it's weird that I could be like related to them."
"Yes, indeed Mr. Dunne, I have certainly noticed the abundance of the Ross name around numerous locales in this area on many occasions, but what, if anything does that have to do with the aforementioned incident in town today?"
JD frowned at Ezra, but looking around and seeing encouraging looks on all his friends' faces he continued.
"Well, when I went around the back of the old chapel all of a sudden it seemed different, quieter and colder and darker like I was somewhere else. I dunno, I know it sounds weird but it was as if I was even in another time, I couldn't hear the street sounds anymore and I know you won't believe me, but I saw, well for a moment the chapel had a roof and a door and everything, it was all together, not in ruins, and I saw people walking out of it and then they were just gone and it was nothing but ruins again. Anyhow that's when Casey found me and she yelled my name, and well, it just startled me that's all. I wasn't scared or anything, not really. Casey just laughed when I told her. She said people over here see ghosts and stuff all the time, but I think maybe she was just teasing me?"
"I don't know what it's like in other countries," said Vin, "but I know lots of people here who say they've seen ghosts or things that can't be explained. I've been to the old Slains Castle near Cruden Bay, that's on the coast, north of Aberdeen, and that place is just creepy. All those damp mists floating around. I'd see something out of the corner of my eye and turn and see nothing but the mist. It felt like someone was watching me all the time, but there was never anyone there. Did you know that's where that Bram Stoker guy used to stay and they saw that's what inspired him to write Dracula."
"Maybe you just thought it was creepy because you knew that?" asked JD.
"Didn't know it at the time, some places are just eerie. Bet everyone here's seen something ghostly or felt something like you did, JD. Right, Chris?"
"Oh yes," agreed Chris. "I've been to Culloden. Do you know anything about that, JD?"
When JD shook his head Chris continued. "The Culloden Moor is near Inverness and in 1746 that's where Bonnie Prince Charlie's rebel army, made up of Scottish clans like the Stuarts, the MacDonalds and the Frasers, was crushed by the British government troops. Thousands died in less than an hour and any that escaped were hunted down and slaughtered. There have been lots of reported sightings there of ghosts, and visions of the battle itself, or some people hear the sounds of the fighting or the clashing of swords. I didn't see anything like that but you could feel the terrible sorrow of the place. There was just such a sense of horror that you could feel it, and it was eerie quiet, birds don't even sing there."
Chris took a long sip of his whisky and then just sat staring at its amber depths. No one spoke for a long moment, until Josiah's deep smooth rumble was heard."A wind that awoke on the moorland came sighing,
Like the voice of the heroes who perished in vain:
"Not for Tearlach alone the red claymore was plying,
But to win back the old world that comes not again." (1)
"Well, I for one have seen a ghost," claimed Buck with a smirk, "and she was beautiful! It was years ago and I was travelling around Scotland one summer with some mates and we were at a pub in Aberdeen one night and heard about the ghost of Fyvie Castle so we went there the next day. Anyhow, Lilias Drummond died there in 1601, some say she died of a broken heart but some believed she was starved to death by her husband. Whichever it was she carved her name on the stone window sill outside of her husband's bedroom on the night he took a new bride and it's still there. When we entered the castle I saw a tour guide wearing an old fashioned long dress so I just followed her from room to room, she was beautiful and she smelled like roses. I found out afterwards that none of the other guys had seen her. She didn't look transparent or ghostly but just like a regular person so I thought my mates were just having some fun with me, but I had taken pictures and when I had them developed she wasn't in any of them."
Vin laughed, "Trust you Bucklin, to see a female ghost!"
"So have I," said Josiah.
"When, where?" asked JD almost starting to bounce in place.
"About twenty years ago on a Shetland Island," he answered sagely.
"Aw come one, Josiah," begged Buck. "We need more details."
"Well, it was a dark and stormy night," he began in his deep story telling voice, which had everyone settling back to enjoy one of his long epics. "I was staying on one of the Shetland Islands, do you know where that is John?" At JD's nod, he continued, "high up a hill in a remote part of the island there's a 1,000 acre estate. Now this area has been inhabited for over 5,000 years and has some very old history. Windhouse is an imposing stone house built in 1707 and is steeped in mystery," Josiah rumbled on, "and has been vacant since the 1920's after the previous owners abandoned the house, leaving it to become a derelict ruin. Apparently it was after they received threats from an apparition that they would not live through the night,. Legend has it that these ghost sightings began with their sudden abandonment. (2)
"Josiah, how 'bout we skip the history lesson and hear about the lady ghost?" prompted Buck.
"Yes, well, I was walking along the beach below the house just around sunset and when I was walking back to where I was staying, I came quite close to the house itself. It had gotten quite dark and a storm had started. Just as lightening lit up the area around the house I glanced up and saw a woman at the top of the stairs leading into the house. She walked around the landing three times, all of a sudden the storm abated for a moment. It was so quiet I could hear the rustling of her petticoats and her silk dress, she sighed and just disappeared. I ran up the stairs and there was nobody there, nothing at all except the ruins. I found out afterwards that Windhouse has the reputation of being one of the most haunted houses in Scotland."
"Wow, that's incredible," JD enthused. "What about you, Ezra? Do you have a ghostly tale to tell too?"
"JD, have you ever heard of Roslyn Chapel? It was mentioned in The Da Vinci Code."
"I think so, maybe," answered JD, "don't really remember the details."
"It's in the Midlothian area, a few miles south-east of Edinburgh, and even Sir Walter Scott claimed it was haunted. Monks have been seen floating around and there have been many appearances by apparitions, the latest incidences reported during the filming of the movie where several actors reported strange paranormal activity. It was actually several years prior to that when I was in the area and stopped to see the chapel. While wandering around I heard several inexplicable noises that could not be traced to any logical explanation; I found it rather eerie."
"What about you Nathan, you're a man of science. Do you believe in any of this?" quizzed JD.
"A couple of years ago I was driving alone from Dumfries to Galloway on the A75, that's in South West Scotland," clarified Nathan. "It was late and it was raining, and I admit that I was quite tired. Anyways I wasn't driving too fast, just trying to see clearly through the rain when all of a sudden, out of nowhere, a man ran out in front of my car. I slammed the brakes on, but I couldn't stop in time and I hit him. It was horrible, I could see his face, his eyes wide open, he looked so shocked and pale, and he rolled off the car just before I came to a stop. I jumped out and ran back to where I saw him fall, hoping he would still be alive, and that I'd be able to help him. I'd already finished my first aid training by then, but I couldn't find him. I searched and searched but there was nothing, and I was sure I'd hit him so hard that he couldn't have just got up and walked away. I was thoroughly drenched by then so I finally gave up and I stopped at the first police station I saw to tell them what had happened, and they said it happens all the time on that stretch of the A75. Drivers hit people or have collisions with other vehicles that just disappear and there had been lots of reported sightings of weird looking phantoms and ghostly apparitions on the Kinmount section of the road too." (3)
"That's so incredible that we've all seen or heard or felt something spooky! Maybe I'll see some more," JD hopped up and started walking around the room. "Has anyone seen anything like ghosts right here at Glenneaval?"
"Sounds like we got ourselves a ghost hunter," teased Buck making spooky music sounds.
"Hey guys, I wasn't really scared today, but I have been. I'll tell you what was really the most scariest of all for me. Seriously, the truth is that the most scared I've ever been in my whole life was when my mom died and I was all alone. It was awful. I felt so empty and as if I'd never have any family again. I never ever dreamed that I'd end up somewhere like this, and have a real home again like I do here with you guys. "
Note: All of these stories, except JD's, are based on actual true sightings that I researched, and I've included some links below