Creepypasta of the Week: “Pale Luna”

computer 80s

Previously: “String Theory.”

I actually don’t know much about the origins of “Pale Luna”; it was first uploaded to the Creepypasta Wikia on August 6, 2011, but I’m not sure whether the person who uploaded it is actually the original author. The story is credited to someone named “Ed”; however, no one seems to know who Ed is or what might have become of him. 

In any event, “Pale Luna” is a creepypasta classic that usually hits all the nostalgia buttons for people who grew up playing Infocom text adventure games like the Zork series, Ballyhoo, and the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy game. I’m one of those people; my earliest computer-related memories consist of my dad and I playing the aforementioned games on the huge, clunky laptop with the blue screen he had courtesy of his office.

None of the games we ever played were anything like “Pale Luna,” though — which, by the way, you actually can play these days, thanks to a creative Kongregate user. Check it out here.

In some ways, “Pale Luna” is similar to the short film “Internet Story”; exactly how, though, is something I’ll let you see for yourselves. 

Read more "Creepypasta of the Week: “Pale Luna”"

The Most Dangerous Games: Frequently Asked Questions, Vol. III

bell book candle

Previously: Frequently Asked Questions, Vol. II.

It’s been a while since we’ve done an FAQ for the Most Dangerous Games, so now seems as good a time as any for another installment. As always, each of these questions came either from readers or from my search analytics; also as always, I’m not an expert in the occult or anything, so the answers seen here are all based on whatever I’ve been able to dig up in my research or my own best guesses (sometimes both).

I’m going to break the fourth wall for a moment here: Remember, most of these games aren’t actually real; they’re urban legends for the digital age, thought up by some creative individuals and meant primarily to spook and entertain. They’re stories. As such, any questions you might have about the specifics of what happens if you don’t follow the rules? Well, I’ve always maintained that, when it comes to horror, what we don’t see is always much scarier than what we do see. Odds are that whatever your own imagination can come up with is far more frightening than whatever someone else can — because whatever you think up is specific to you. Good horror, I think, paints in broad enough strokes that any individual can take what’s there and run with it, coming up with a highly personalized experience no one else will have. Ever. As such, even though you might want to ask all of those “but what happens if…” questions… you probably don’t actually want to know the answers. It’s better to leave the door open to possibility.

Besides, not knowing what comes next is one of the most basic fears we have. What’s more frightening than the unknown?

Read more "The Most Dangerous Games: Frequently Asked Questions, Vol. III"

The Most Dangerous Games: Bed of Sorrow

Previously: Lady Spades

The phrase “Bed of Sorrow” appears in literature throughout history; it’s more or less interchangeable with the word “sickbed,” although sometimes it may also be referred to as a “bed of languishing.” No doubt the most interesting occurrence, however, is the biblical one: The phrase “bed of sorrow” appears in Psalm 40 of the Douay Rheims Bible — the version printed in the late 16th and early 17th centuries in England as an effort to uphold Catholic tradition in the face of the ongoing Protestant Reformation — with verse four reading, “The Lord help him on his bed of sorrow: thou has turned all his couch in his sickness.” Somewhat puzzlingly, though, most other versions of the bible feature the phrase’s analogue in verse three of Psalm 41 — in the King James Bible, for instance, Psalm 41:3 reads, “The Lord will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing: thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness.” 

What I find most notable about the different forms of the phrase is the way “languishing” bridges the gap between “sick” and “sorrow.” The Oxford English Dictionaries offer both “lose or lack vitality; grow weak or feeble,” which implies sickness, and “pine with love or grief,” which implies sorrow, as definitions for the verb “to languish,” so it’s not hard to see how some might interpret it one way, while others might read it another.

Read more "The Most Dangerous Games: Bed of Sorrow"

Are Taxi Drivers In Japan Really Picking Up The Ghosts Of The 2011 Tsunami? A Look At The Legend Of The Vanishing Hitchhiker


An interesting little story has been circulating the Internet for the past couple of weeks: Apparently taxi drivers in Ishinomaki, Japan have reported picking up the ghosts of the victims of the 2011 tsunami and earthquake that caused the Fukushima nuclear disaster. I think there’s a lot of fascinating stuff to unpack here, so let’s take a look, shall we?

Read more "Are Taxi Drivers In Japan Really Picking Up The Ghosts Of The 2011 Tsunami? A Look At The Legend Of The Vanishing Hitchhiker"

Encyclopaedia of the Impossible: Mel’s Hole

wellPreviously: Deogen.

Type: MP (Malevolent Portal)

Period/location of origin: Precise date of origin is unknown; subject was first reported to exist in 1997 at Manastash Ridge, near Ellensburg, Washington.

Appearance: Subject appears to be a large pit of indeterminate depth, nine feet wide, and surrounded by a 3.5 foot tall stone retaining wall. The retaining wall extends into the pit roughly 15 feet below ground level; beyond the 15-foot point, the pit continues downward directly through soil, bedrock, etc. Subject may or may not have a bottom, as evinced by experiments conducted involving the dropping of small objects into the pit. Neither a crash nor a splash has been heard during these experiments; as such, it remains unknown whether subject contains either a floor or a well. Subject also does not echo noises from the top (voices shouted down into the pit, etc.).

Read more "Encyclopaedia of the Impossible: Mel’s Hole"