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The Ghost in the Cap’n Brown House
by [?]

“‘No, it wa’n’t the cap’n,’ says she: ‘it was somethin’ soft and white, and moved very still; it was like somethin’ in the air,’ says she. Then Quassia she haw-hawed louder. Says she, ‘It’s hy-sterikes, Miss Cinthy; that’s all it is.’

“Wal, Cinthy she was kind o’ ‘shamed, but for all that she couldn’t help herself. Sometimes evenin’s she’d be a settin’ with the cap’n, and she’d think she’d hear somebody a movin’ in his room overhead; and she knowed it wa’n’t Quassia, ’cause Quassia was ironin’ in the kitchen. She took pains once or twice to find out that ‘are.

“Wal, ye see, the cap’n’s room was the gret front upper chamber over the parlor, and then right oppi-site to it was the gret spare chamber where Cinthy slept. It was jest as grand as could be, with a gret four-post mahogany bedstead and damask curtains brought over from England; but it was cold enough to freeze a white bear solid,–the way spare chambers allers is. Then there was the entry between, run straight through the house: one side was old Quassia’s room, and the other was a sort o’ storeroom, where the old cap’n kep’ all sorts o’ traps.

“Wal, Cinthy she kep’ a hevin’ things happen and a seein’ things, till she didn’t railly know what was in it. Once when she come into the parlor jest at sundown, she was sure she see a white figure a vanishin’ out o’ the door that went towards the side entry. She said it was so dusk, that all she could see was jest this white figure, and it jest went out still as a cat as she come in.

“Wal, Cinthy didn’t like to speak to the cap’n about it. She was a close woman, putty prudent, Cinthy was.

“But one night, ’bout the middle o’ the week, this ‘ere thing kind o’ come to a crisis.

“Cinthy said she’d ben up putty late a sewin’ and a finishin’ off down in the parlor; and the cap’n he sot up with her, and was consid’able cheerful and entertainin’, tellin’ her all about things over in the Bermudys, and off to Chiny and Japan, and round the world ginerally. The storm that hed been a blowin’ all the week was about as furious as ever; and the cap’n he stirred up a mess o’ flip, and hed it for her hot to go to bed on. He was a good-natured critter, and allers had feelin’s for lone women; and I s’pose he knew ’twas sort o’ desolate for Cinthy.

“Wal, takin’ the flip so right the last thing afore goin’ to bed, she went right off to sleep as sound as a nut, and slep’ on till somewhere about mornin’, when she said somethin’ waked her broad awake in a minute. Her eyes flew wide open like a spring, and the storm hed gone down and the moon come out; and there, standin’ right in the moonlight by her bed, was a woman jest as white as a sheet, with black hair hangin’ down to her waist, and the brightest, mourn fullest black eyes you ever see. She stood there lookin’ right at Cinthy; and Cinthy thinks that was what waked her up; ’cause, you know, ef anybody stands and looks steady at folks asleep it’s apt to wake ’em.

“Any way, Cinthy said she felt jest as ef she was turnin’ to stone. She couldn’t move nor speak. She lay a minute, and then she shut her eyes, and begun to say her prayers; and a minute after she opened ’em, and it was gone.

“Cinthy was a sensible gal, and one that allers hed her thoughts about her; and she jest got up and put a shawl round her shoulders, and went first and looked at the doors, and they was both on ’em locked jest as she left ’em when she went to bed. Then she looked under the bed and in the closet, and felt all round the room: where she couldn’t see she felt her way, and there wa’n’t nothin’ there.