Disembodied Voices, Cold Spots & Channeled Spirits: Just Another Night in the Ghost Hunting Business

The moment I walked through the door of the 108-year old house we investigated last night, I noticed a bed in the living room. My first thought was, is the owner too afraid to sleep upstairs? Which turned out to be exactly the case. As the investigative team of four – including yours truly – made ourselves comfortable in the sitting room, the homeowner and her adult son talked about the paranormal activity they’d been experiencing. It felt like a group of friends gathered together for a friendly little visit, complete with hot coffee and freshly-baked brownies. And then Steven leaned toward me ominously and asked, “Do you feel anything?”

That was when the evening began to get interesting.

The Spirits make their presence known. 

The ghost-hunting team – Steven, Rene, Melissa and myself – had met at Steven’s apartment before heading over to the client’s house. It was the first time I’d met Rene and Melissa, and they were both warm and friendly, putting me immediately at ease. Neither seemed to be the least concerned that it was my first time. I had vowed to act professionally during the investigation, though inside I was giddy with excitement. It isn’t every day that one goes on a real, live (dead? undead?) ghost hunt, after all!

The subject of our investigation.

The homeowner, whom I’ll call K, was an older woman probably in her early sixties. She was accompanied by her son (“Jack”), who was my age. Both were outgoing and eager to talk about their experiences. Jack told us he regularly communicates with the dead, and if he was expecting slack-jawed skepticism, he did not receive it from any of us. We are believers, and his stories were incredible. Jack is kind of like a real-life version of Bruce Willis’s character in The Sixth Sense. K talked openly of being harassed by often-violent spirits in the house for years, and claimed to have received scratch marks on her leg one evening. Activity had picked up recently, especially since they’d contacted Steven for assistance. I experienced a brief, fleeting moment where I thought, Angry, violent spirits?! Hope I haven’t bitten off more than I can chew here! Fortunately, it passed quickly, replaced by my natural curiosity and excitement.

Steven asked me if I felt anything, because he was suddenly cold. I should note that the house was stifling – it was a warm day, there was no A/C, and we had them turn off their fans to eliminate any background noises. He told me to move my hand near him. I did, and guess what? The air was ice cold.

It was Game On.

I thought this stuff only happened on TV!

Rene began taking photos, capturing a pink orb hovering around Steven’s chair. Most orbs caught on camera are nothing more than dust particles, but this one was emitting its own light. At this point, the batteries in that camera and in another inexplicably drained completely. Back at Steven’s apartment, we had meticulously checked each battery, and inserted new ones in all our devices. Luckily, we’d brought spares. We decided to check out the rest of the house, so K took us upstairs. When we stepped into bedroom # 1, it was cold, which made no sense because heat rises, and the rest of the house was hot. This was the room with the most activity, K explained, and she refused to open the closet doors because doing so seemed to lead to increased activity. They were, in fact, taped shut with masking tape. Bedroom # 2 was nice and toasty. We were drawn to a closet where it was obvious there had once been a lock on the outside of the door – up at the top of the door jamb, as if something (or somebody) were kept inside against their will. Rene was drawn to the closet. Turns out she is very much in tune with her spiritual side, and a natural empath, like Steven. I learned to rely on her uncanny psychic senses quite a bit as the evening progressed.

Living room/stairway in the house we investigated.

We all had digital audio recorders running for the duration of the investigation, and I left mine in the upstairs bedroom while we all returned downstairs. Steven then began monitoring the first hour’s worth of recordings, and discovered what he calls a Class A EVP: a clear, distinctive female voice saying, “Where was I going?” We quickly eliminated any of the three women in the house as being the source of the voice. It came in at a much higher frequency and was talking over somebody else for a second.

Rene and I returned to bedroom # 1 after an hour to check things out, and that’s when I had my first personal experience. I stepped into the room, and felt ice cold. The skin all over my arms and legs erupted in goosebumps, and my hairs were standing on end. Rene very soothingly took my arm, explained that I was feeling the energy of a presence in the room, and had me take a deep breath while the energy dissipated. After a few seconds I felt normal again. I can’t explain the sensation – it was like nothing I’d ever felt before. I wasn’t the least bit nervous; instead, I was really wired now! We opened the closet door, sat down, and conducted a fifteen-minute EVP session, taking turns asking the spirit questions. I listened later to see if we had captured anything, but came up empty. However, about half an hour before we entered the room, there is the sound of what appears to be a child screaming briefly. At the time I attributed this to kids playing outside. Near the end of the investigation, I asked K and Jack if there were children in the neighborhood, and they said no. Their house is on the west end of town, near an industrial area. Definitely not a family-friendly neighborhood. I can’t say this was definitive evidence of a spirit – it could have been somebody passing by outside, after all – but based on what we learned next, it’s interesting.

Things get really weird.

Back downstairs, Jack went into a trance. I am not kidding: one moment everything was normal, the next he had tears in his eyes and was channeling the spirit of a little girl. (Despite anybody’s beliefs, I am writing this narrative as fact. The whole night tipped the Strange Scale past Level 10. You had to be there to see it). Thanks to a session with Rene, we learned that there was a 12-year old girl named Melissa who had been raped by an uncle when she lived in the house decades ago, and had been imprisoned in the closet. She was still afraid of the uncle’s spirit, who in turn did not want to “pass on” due to a fear of judgment. During another trance session upstairs (which I regrettably missed, as I was busy monitoring our laptop for EVPs), the angry male spirit mocked Steven’s attempts to get him to leave the house, at one point laughing in his face and saying, “You have no power over me.” Working with the homeowner, they told him he had no right to be there and demanded he leave – and suddenly, the presence was gone.

Steven monitoring for EVPs while investigator Melissa chats with the clients.

Straight out of Hollywood, boys and girls. Only minus the special effects. We’ve got it all on digital audio and camera. This is unbelievable stuff.

Afterwards, the house felt peaceful. It had seemed heavy and oppressive before, something I hadn’t really paid too much attention to until the atmosphere was suddenly changed and noticeably different. We sat around for another hour and a half while K and Jack regaled us with many stories. In the end, they thanked us for our help. Jack feels that the evil entity is gone, and said the little girl feels safe for the first time. Everybody was pretty emotional; no matter where the truth may lie, in the end these people feel that we helped them reclaim their house and, in the process, their lives. That alone is an amazing feeling.

We have a lot more audio to listen to in the coming days. It’ll be interesting to see if we caught any other EVPs.

Bidding our clients farewell shortly after 1 AM, we walked outside to our cars. The night was dark and still, a crescent moon hanging suspended from the black heavens. Steven and Rene were in awe, assuring me that this was not a typical case at all. Never before had they experienced such an intense level of interaction. It was quickly deemed one of the best cases ever. I guess I got pretty lucky! They both said they were impressed with me, and Steven asked if I’d be interested in accompanying them on future investigations. My reply?

“Oh, hell yeah!”


Published by Mark Petruska

I'm a professional writer and editor living my best life in south central Wisconsin.

42 thoughts on “Disembodied Voices, Cold Spots & Channeled Spirits: Just Another Night in the Ghost Hunting Business

    1. I have an update. I sent a copy of the EVP I caught to Steven for verification. He first assumed it was a bird chirping, but quickly ruled that out. He then measured it at 2000 Hz, which is above the human frequency and consistent with that of spirits caught on EVPs. He is calling it paranormal. How cool is that?!


  1. OH. MY. GOD.!!!!!

    First, I want to say…..I WISH I HAD BEEN THERE WITH YOU GUYS!!!!

    Mark, your narrative of this night was faaaaaaabulous. I could actually SEE and FEEL everything you were explaining – to a T!

    I got chills when I read….

    “the angry male spirit mocked Steven’s attempts to get him to leave the house, at one point laughing in his face and saying, “You have no power over me.”

    I once knew a woman in Florida who also channeled spirits, and I experienced two of her sessions. That’s one of those things you literally have to experience for yourself to believe. And I believe it!

    Thanks soooooooo much for sharing this, buddy. I was so eagerly anticipating it. I look forward to future updates!

    You GO, Ghostbuster!!!!


    1. It was amazing, Ron. I’ve never seen anybody go into a trance like that. And when Jack woke up, he had NO idea what had just happened! You could see that on his face and hear it in his voice. Truly incredible.

      A lot of my friends expressed the same sentiment – many of them said they wished they would have gotten this opportunity! Except for my kids. They think dad is straight-up nuts. Suffice it to say, I feel extremely fortunate to have gotten to do something like this, and look forward to future investigations.

      We really did “bust” a ghost, and bring peace to a family. That means the world to me.


  2. You better watch out Mark – with your kind of writing some network is going to hire you to write content for their show! 😀

    I didn’t know about your sensation upstairs! That’s really cool… or in your case ICE COLD 🙂 Being as hot and humid as it was yesterday, any changes in temps was a nice welcome.

    You did great for your first investigation and the rabbit hole only goes much deeper my friend. 🙂


    1. Thanks, Steven! That’s one thing I learned last night: it’s impossible to be everywhere at once, and to know exactly what everybody else is experiencing. Maybe during an “ordinary” investigation we’d have had a better sense of what was going on with each other, but with so much happening at once, it was impossible. We didn’t even get a chance to use the EMF meters!

      Happy to go down the rabbit hole, as deep as it gets!


  3. @Mark – Yeah – didn’t need them – things were happening that required us to listen, look and feel, stuff I mentioned that your body is the best instrument of all to pick up on. 🙂


  4. WOW! I have had my own experience and am not to eager to delve too deep into ANY RABBIT HOLE! But you go guy! And please write about EVERY SINGLE ONE. I can’t seem to look away and loved every minute of it 🙂


  5. This was an incredible tale. I’ve been a skeptic for the past few years, but I used to believe these types of stories as irrefutable evidence of the paranormal.

    I felt like I was going on a ghostbusters hunt…except it was not enhanced with special effects. You should write a book about all of your adventures – you have a gift with narration as Ron mentioned above.


    1. Thank you! At one time I was interested in writing a book about real-life hauntings in the Portland area, but my plan at the time was to interview people who had had experiences. I even e-mailed back and forth with a few. However, it would be much more interesting to write about my OWN experiences! Maybe someday I’d have enough material for a book…it’s food for thought, at least.


  6. So jealous!!! Crazy stuff, I hope for the family’s sake the evil spirit has left. Be careful, but definitely keep sharing, if you go on any future ghost hunts.


    1. Oh, there’s no “if” about it. It’ll be a definite “when”! And I couldn’t not share with you guys!

      Jack is convinced the bad spirit has left for good. I guess only time will tell, but my fingers are crossed for the family.


  7. Mark…
    I couldn’t read this one…I got about 1/4 of the way in…and got creeped out…there is so much evil in the world, real, true scary stuff…I just couldn’t do it…

    So…how are you?
    I am fine.
    We had a nice weekend.
    Did you?
    I hope so.

    (I’ll read the next one…)


    1. It’s okay, Jane – I understand!

      1. I am great.
      2. My weekend was wonderful. I went on a ghost hunt, and…oh, wait. You don’t want to hear that. Well, it was pretty good all around.

      See you next time!


    1. And I updated the post to include the part about the drained batteries…forgot to mention that the first time around. Which just goes to show how much else was happening at the time!


  8. Mark, it’s ^..^Kat–I had to come read about your experience, you knew that. I’m so happy you were able to really feel, see, and hear things on your very first outing.


  9. I found you from Kathy McCullogh, and I couldn’t resist reading about ghosts since I am truly fascinated by all things paranormal. I’m also interested in discovering how to become a freelance writer and actually make a living at it, so I will be back to visit very often.


    1. Thanks for stopping by, Lisa! I’m not quite making a living from freelancing, but hopefully I’m headed in that direction because this job market is tough! Glad you enjoyed the ghost story. 🙂


  10. I LOVE the cover!!

    I’m so excited for you!

    im also glad i found you over here. i missed you over there at that other desolate place i read haha. 🙂

    im also really glad i get to read you again!


  11. Nuts. No can do. I’ll just read you doing stuff and I’ll just chill in my apartment that was probably built in 2009 or something so there are no spirits here 🙂


      1. Don’t tell me that dude! I wanna live in my world where I think my apartment should be just fine cause hardly anyone has lived here and it was just built, so it’s not likely someone died here. I may be wrong…but it helps me get through the night! 🙂


  12. I found reference to this post over at belleofthecarnival.com. Of course I had to pop in. One line in particular gave me a chill: “They were, in fact, taped shut with masking tape.”

    I enjoyed reading this, and look forward to hearing more about your explorations 🙂


  13. Yikes! I’m here by way of “the ramblings.” I went right to the “Paranormal” category like Lisa (Woman Wielding Words) given that 1) we recently celebrated Halloween; 2) I’m unashamedly a “Ghost Adventures” fan; and 3) I recently seemed to have captured in a photo what I’m telling everyone is a spirit orb (by way of my blog and otherwise). I would never have the nerve to do what you did! Anyway, I’m looking forward to reading more of your blog. Carl highly recommended you, too, in a comment over at “the ramblings.”


    1. Thanks for stopping by and checking out my blog! I’ll have to return the favor, as I’m very interested in ghosts and the paranormal (can you tell?) and want to learn more about this orb you captured!


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