Uncle Howard’s Cabin

📅 Published on January 17, 2022

“Uncle Howard’s Cabin”

Written by Kyle Harrison
Edited by Craig Groshek and Seth Paul
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

ESTIMATED READING TIME — 10 minutes

Rating: 10.00/10. From 6 votes.
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When I was a little boy, my fondest summer memories were spending time in the north woods at my Uncle Howard’s.  He had this rustic old cabin surrounded by nothing but pure nature.

The local hunters called it Howard’s Hideout.  Every time my brother John and I would visit, a new adventure would await us.

But as you grow up, those things fade, and you find yourself focusing on the adventures of adulthood.  They aren’t nearly as fun, and you can’t just wiggle your nose and change the story.

I wish I could change this story.  But this isn’t about me.  It’s about my Uncle and the legacy he left behind.

Howard died last June from a massive heart attack.  I remember John called me at work to tell me the news.  He knew I was always incredibly close to our Uncle.

A rush of memories flooded over me after I got off the phone.  Fishing down at the creek, setting snares along the property line, listening to old westerns as he popped a bag of kettle corn over the open stove.

What stuck out the most was the ghost stories Uncle Howard would tell.

That evening John and I went out for drinks, and I asked him what his favorite campfire story Howard told us was.

“Gee, bro…I don’t know.  He told us a lot of crazy things,”  he said with a laugh.  I prodded him for a moment longer, and finally, he gave in and said, “That one about the bear.”

I sat there and drank my whiskey, remembering the story quite well.

Uncle Howard had a way of making the monsters extra vivid in his stories, and none of them were more frightening than the entity that John recalled.

According to our Uncle, the creature was about as large as a 7-foot tall man with massive claws that could tear a person into twelve pieces all at once.

Papa Bear is what he called it.

Apparently, despite being so fearsomely large, Papa Bear was not all that dangerous, so Howard reassured us.

“He’s a protector of these woods, keeps the good in and the bad out.  That’s why you boys are safe here.  Papa Bear is watching out for us,”  he said.

Apparently, Papa Bear decided who was and wasn’t welcome in the woods and eliminated any threats to keep the forest secure and magical.  Though I knew that John and I were spared somehow, I recalled every detail of what happened to its victims.

Those who trespassed were not simply killed.  I knew even as a young boy Uncle Howard was trying to make sure we kept nature clean, but still, it scared the shit out of me.  He made sure to tell us that the victims became slaves to the abomination, tasked to clean the forest that they had defiled.

Especially at night when the wind would whistle through the old cabin and make everything sound so loud, like a groaning noise or a wailing.  I remember vividly hiding under the covers one night when the sounds went on for hours; I didn’t even get up to go to the bathroom and instead peed on myself to stay safe.

“Who do you think will get the cabin?”  John asked me, bringing my mind back to the present.  I had to admit I didn’t know, considering that my Uncle and aunt had divorced quite some time ago.

“It seems a shame just to let it sit out there,”  I said.

Later that same week, I spoke with his second ex-wife Denise on the phone.  (Our aunt, Rena, died around the time I went to college)

Denise admitted she didn’t really have any idea about the last will and testament or if it even included anything about the cabin but promised she would look into it.

That Saturday, my dad and I went to hear the reading of the will.  A few of our other relatives I hadn’t seen in a while were there.  I even saw Howard’s estranged son Walker show up.

“Wasn’t he in prison?”  my dad whispered to me when he walked in.

“You’re the cop, not me,”  I said back as Walker sat down a few rows ahead of us.

“You know what, I think I remember now; it was just a misdemeanor on illegal possession, but they always thought he might have been involved in the Cooper case,”  my dad whispered back.

You know what my dad meant if you have lived around this area long enough.  About six years back, a family went missing on the north stretch of the interstate near the Stateline for those of you who don’t.

The investigation into their disappearance revealed that they had planned a fishing trip for the family into the woods, husband and wife and two girls.

Shannon, the oldest girl, was the only body they ever found around a year later.

She had somehow survived that long out in the woods and was trying desperately to reach civilization but ended up running into a meth lab.

The same meth lab that Walker had been busted for a few months after her body was found there.

I had never read the full report, but it struck me as odd that the timing of the two events was so close together.

A few moments after my dad made this comment, the cabin was mentioned in the will, and to my shock and dismay, Walker managed to get the property.

I followed him outside after the reading was finished and found him leaning against the building, smoking a joint.

“Brian!  It’s been a while,”  he said as he offered me a smoke.  He gave me a lopsided smile.

“I’m clean now, Walker.  Pretty crazy about your dad, huh?”  I told him.  He nodded, not saying much.  I knew that he had always been jealous of John and I.

Uncle Howard had always been much more of a father to us than him, and I was positive that had always rubbed him the wrong way.

“So whatcha need, Brian?  I know you didn’t come out here to chew cud with me,”  he said.

“You going to the funeral tomorrow?”  I asked.

“Gotta pay my respects to the old man,”  Walker answered.

“I know it’s probably an odd request…but I was hoping maybe I could handle the distribution of his remains…”  I said.

“His ashes?”  he asked with a nervous laugh.

“I was just thinking about his cabin out there and…and how much he loved it,”  I explained as I tried not to tear up.

I knew Walker wouldn’t understand.  But I was surprised when he agreed to let me have the canister.

“You can fling ‘em all up and down the county for all I care,”  he said as he tossed his burnt cig down.

I talked with John about my intentions to head to the cabin that next weekend and my brother suggested we make a camping trip out of it, a final way to say goodbye to Uncle Howard.

We drove up that Saturday morning in the late June heat.  We took John’s pickup truck, and I remember keeping myself cool by using a wet rag and some ice because he didn’t have AC.

By the time we had arrived, I was sweating so bad I decided to head down to the creek for a swim.

“You ain’t getting out of helping me get this shit inside,”  my brother told me.

Even though we both felt like we would have a heat stroke, I helped him carry our luggage inside and set it down on the couch.

“It still looks like it’s still in good condition,”  John said.

I had to admit I was impressed with the cabin’s cleanliness, and I immediately wondered how long it had been since Howard had been here.

“He loved this place,”  I realized.

We looked around at some of the hunting trophies that he had hanging on the wall, and I remembered Howard teaching me how to skin small birds to prepare them for the stuffing process.

“Remember that all things on this earth are created to serve men, boy.  You don’t want to hurt God’s creation, and you want to respect life,”  Howard told me.

I saw one of the geese I helped preserve and reached up to touch the feathers.  It was amazing how it seemed in perfect condition after all these years.

The woods made everything feel even more inviting like we were taking a trip back in time and experiencing everything for the first time.

We followed the west trail, listening to the gentle singing birds and looking at some of the old snares that Howard still had set up.

Once the trail ended, we relied on memory alone to reach the creek.  The water looked as clear as it had when we were kids.

I didn’t take a moment to hesitate and tossed my shoes off and let my feet relax on the right side of the stream.

We stayed down at the creek for about an hour, and then John suggested we do a little bit of hunting.  John took off his shirt and jumped into the deeper portion of the creek, howling excitedly.  It felt so good to be here.

Back at the cabin, I walked down to the basement to find any of our Uncle’s guns.

The basement was in a bit more disrepair than upstairs, but I recalled that Howard used it as a spare closet, storing all his junk there.

Near the back of the room, I found a small locked cache where he kept all his rifles and then rummaged through the other drawers nearby for the key.

A gentle sound like a whisper seemed to creep into the room slowly, and it made me pause in what I was doing.  Then the noise grew louder.

It sounded like the noises we heard when we were younger.

A gentle muffling wail.

I took the keys and grabbed a few guns, leaving the basement behind and feeling a little unsettled.

As we walked out toward the woods, I told John about it.

“We’re barely here a few hours, and you already hear things?  Man, I can’t wait for tonight,”  he joked.

I laughed it off as nerves or just my imagination.

We followed the other trail behind the cabin up toward the mountains.  I brought our Uncle’s ashes along, remembering one of his favorite spots was along this path.

It was a scenic overlook of the forest itself and the nearby lake.  Uncle Howard usually wouldn’t let us come up there as kids cause of the steep slopes.

There was one time, though, that he did whenever we had accidentally shot a deer in the wrong spot, and it was unfit for eating.  I thought we were going up the slope to bury it up.  Howard showed me a pit where other hunters also disposed of carcasses.

“This keeps the bears happy,” he explained.

After a bit of trial and error, I found the pit and decided this would be a perfect spot to release Howard’s ashes.

I held a handkerchief over my mouth and opened the canister, watching as the wind carried them away.

Then my attention was drawn toward the pit itself, and I noticed something out of the ordinary.  It took me a minute to realize what it was.

“Holy shit,”  I shouted out as I took a few steps back from the ledge.  John was there in a second, and I wordlessly pointed down the slope to where the littered remains of a few bones were, along with a human skull.

“Jesus,”  John said.

He decided to climb down and examine the bones.  A few minutes later, he was back up on the slope, with me looking concerned.

“We should probably call Dad.  I can’t tell for sure if that was an accident…or something much worse,”  John explained.

Neither of us said anything as we returned to the cabin.  I almost felt like we were being watched.  But once we got there, I decided I wasn’t going to let it ruin the weekend.

I searched through Howard’s freezer and found some thawed deer meat at the top to cook.

John was walking around the cabin trying to get reception on his phone and then finally admitted, “This is what I get for switching to T-Mobile.”

I checked mine and noted I had a few bars, so I passed it to him, and he walked outside to make the call.

I walked to the back of the cabin where the propane stove was and turned on the gas to get everything heated and paused as I listened to the soft whistle of the ignition light coming on.

Beneath that noise, I was sure I heard the same wails I heard earlier.  And a repetitive thudding noise.  It made me feel very uncomfortable as I cooked and ignored the sound.

When John came back in, he told me Dad would be there first thing in the morning to examine the body.  The noises had stopped for the moment, but I was becoming more convinced than ever that the cabin was haunted.

That evening as the sun went down, John searched through the second-story closets for blankets, and we both agreed to sleep in the living room.

“If this place is haunted, we’ll know tonight, won’t we?”  he said.

I stayed awake until almost one in the morning, listening for anything.  Then, at last, the noises returned.  It sounded like gentle footsteps.

Then there were voices.  I couldn’t understand what they were saying, but I instantly woke up John.

He switched on the lights in the living room and listened as well.

The noises were growing louder.

“What the hell…?”  John said as he felt something under him.  But neither of us could see anything on the floor.  Then I felt it, too, like a low vibration.

Nervously we moved to the second floor.  The noises became more subdued, and somehow, we found a way to get sleep.

In the morning, Dad got there, and we guided him to the ridge.

“Should we…tell him about the other thing?”  I asked John as we trekked up the mountainside.

“Tell me what?” Dad asked.  He always had excellent hearing.

“This is probably going to sound crazy…but Uncle Howard’s place…it’s got ghosts,”  John answered.

Dad looked at us both skeptically, but we insisted he come back to the cabin and see for himself.

We all headed inside, and John and I tried our best to explain what we heard.

“It felt like something was moving around under our feet,”  John said.

Dad was trying not to roll his eyes.  Then the noises returned, soft and subdued like before.

He pulled out his firearm and looked about, muttering, “What sort of prank is this?”  “It’s for real, Dad,”  I said as we walked around the cabin listening to the strange moaning noises.

Dad made his way toward the stairs, walking carefully to the basement.

The thudding got louder as we looked around the basement, and then Dad gestured for all of us to be quiet and still.  I was too scared to move a muscle.

Then he walked toward Howard’s old tool cabinet and started to push it aside.

I watched silently as he revealed a large wooden door with a metal lock hidden behind it.  The noises were coming from the other side.

Dad pointed his weapon at the lock and shot it off without hesitation, and all of us stood there in fear as the door creaked open.

A thin, skeletal woman collapsed onto the floor in front of us.  Dad rushed over to help her, quickly glancing at the bruises on her legs and arms like she had been chained.

“Don’t just stand there!  Call 911!”  Dad shouted to us.  John took out his phone immediately as I took a few steps toward the door.

A dark tunnel beyond that curved into the solid earth, and I found myself stepping forward to see what the darkness hid.

As it curved around, I found myself standing directly under the living room in a wide-open den, where more chains were latched to the ground as though meant for animals.

The place reeked of the smell of urine and feces.

I held my hand over my mouth as I looked across the room to see the decaying corpses of at least two other women, and at last, I understood.

John followed me down there and then found himself running and vomiting.

I found a large cabinet on the west side of the dungeon filled with photographs.

I cannot begin to describe what Howard made them do while they were trapped down here.

The woman that Dad rescued turned out to be the youngest of the Coopers that had gone missing six years ago.

She did not live for another two days due to bladder failure.

It’s been almost ten months now since I went to the cabin.  I’ve tried not to think about the horrors I found there, but lately, they’ve consumed my every thought.

And John…he handled it the worst.  The guilt made him take his life.  Once he realized the actual depth of our Uncle’s depravity, all those times, we spent summer there…giggling when we listened to the low wails that whispered their way through his cabin.

I’ve returned to the cabin now, with one singular mission.  I doused the entire first floor with gasoline and then activated the stove on a low setting.

I sat out in the pickup truck and watched as it burned.  It sounded like the cabin was screaming as it fell apart into shambles like it was in pain.

But the pain I feel will always be more tremendous.

Rating: 10.00/10. From 6 votes.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Written by Kyle Harrison
Edited by Craig Groshek and Seth Paul
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

🔔 More stories from author: Kyle Harrison


Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

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Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

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