To celebrate my new Tumblr reaching almost 900 followers, I figured I’d go ahead and put down a story that I won’t share on Reddit to thank all of you!
I have a close friend who grew up in the area I did, so we have some similar memories of the woods, and going out in them. He used to tell a story when were kids that I never believed because he was pretty infamous for making shit up, but I’ve been reflecting more on it as I’ve been writing these other ones.
When he was about twelve, he belonged to a Boy Scout troop, and they went out to a campsite for a weekend retreat, or whatever you call those things. As I recall, he said it was him and about twelve other kids. He and like three other kids decided that after everyone had fallen asleep, they’d all get up and go fuck around in the forest, try and see which of them would wimp out first.
They ended up waking up one other kid on accident, and he wanted to go with them, so they all headed out pretty late at night. He said he didn’t know exactly how late because he didn’t think to check the time, but he estimated that it was a little after midnight. Only one of them brought a flashlight, so they stayed pretty close together. They got out far enough that they weren’t afraid of waking anyone up, and they were horsing around and messing with each other, trying to spook everyone. My friend said it was actually really fun until one of the kids pointed ahead and said that he saw something.
They followed this kid, and he led them to what looked like an old, big fire pit. The kid was standing over it, looking into the center of it, and he asked for the flashlight. Everyone gathered around, and my friend said it was the strangest thing. He said it almost looked like one of those old Warner Brothers cartoons, where there’s an almost perfect circle made of solid black on the ground. He said he actually bent down to touch it and see if it really was just paper, but his hand went right down into the ground. When they lit it up with the flashlight, they could see that it was, in fact, an almost perfect circular tunnel into the earth, but there were crude dirt steps carved into the sides, spiraling down. Now, the pit itself was about five feet wide, and the circle was almost exactly that, so it was plenty large enough for a small boy to go down in there. They did they typical things: yelling down into it, dropping a few rocks to see if they could hear it land, but they couldn’t see or hear where it ended, so the talk turned to electing a kid to go down in it. My friend begged out of it, and he got ragged on, but he said it just didn’t seem right, and he didn’t think any of them should be going down it. But the kid with the flashlight, who was sort of the unofficial leader, gave my friend the flashlight and said he was going to check it out. He climbed down into it and started following the stairs, which spiraled along the sides and down in a steep twist. He said once he got down far enough, he’d call for the flashlight, and my friend would toss it down. Stupid logic, but maybe the kid wanted to prove he wasn’t scared.
They watched him go down, keeping the light on him, until they couldn’t see him anymore. Eventually, they could barely hear him, and my friend started asking him to come back up. They said the last thing they heard him say was something to the effect of: “It’s just going and going!” And then he vanished, and they couldn’t see or hear him.
Not knowing what to do, but also not wanting to follow him down, the rest of the group waited by the pit for hours for this kid to come back. It was late, and they were little boys, so at some point all of them fell asleep. When they woke up, it was daylight, and the circle was gone. The ground was flat, like it had never even been there. They all panicked and dug down as far as they could, but there wasn’t even a trace of the tunnel. My friend said it wasn’t like a cave-in, it was like there’d never been anything there in the first place.
They rushed back to camp, where everyone was just starting to notice their collective absence, and told the counselor what had happened. Now he didn’t believe the whole bit about the weird tunnel, but of course he could see that a kid was missing, so he called the police and a search was started. My friend and the rest of the remaining group led the searchers to the fire pit, and there was a massive excavation, but they never found anything. They searched the area for miles, investigated a lot of sex offenders in town in case it was an abduction, but they never found a single trace of that kid.