The Jungle Gym is a scary real ghost story about a student who encounters a strange little girl and her mother in a park. It is based on a story from Japan that is supposed to be a true ghost story.
This happened when I was a college student. I was on my way home when I was stopped by a little girl. She looked like she was about 5 or 6. She grabbed my hand and started pulling.
“Please come,” she begged. “My mom needs help…”
I don’t know why, but for some reason I went with her.
The little girl dragged me by the hand for 4 or 5 blocks until we arrived at a park. There were trees, benches, swings and a jungle gym. Perhaps because it was nearly dusk, the park seemed to be empty.
The girl wouldn’t let go of my hand and she dragged me towards the jungle gym. Nearby, I noticed a woman sitting on a bench under a tree. From where I was standing, I couldn’t see her face because the branches of the tree were covering it.
“I brought someone, Mom!” the little girl called cheerfully.
The woman on the bench didn’t move.
From behind the branches of the tree, I heard her say, “I’m sorry, it’s my daughter…”
There was something about the woman’s voice that sent a chill down my spine. I felt like something was very, very wrong. I just wanted to get away from there as fast as possible.
The little girl said, “Come play with me,” and she ran over to the jungle gym.
“I’m sorry, it’s my daughter…” said the woman again in a dull monotone.
I still couldn’t see her face. Something about the way she was sitting made me nervous. I broke out into a cold sweat.
The little girl was playing on the jungle gym behind me.
The sun was beginning to set and it was growing darker.
“Why did you tell your daughter to bring me here?” I asked. “Why me?”
At that moment, the woman suddenly screamed out, “Jenny!”
There was a dull thud and I looked back the jungle gym behind me. The little girl had fallen and she lay motionless on the ground. Her face was pale and her eyes were wide open. Her breath was coming in small gasps. As I watched in horror, a pool of blood began to spread out on the ground around her head.
I wanted to call the police, an ambulance, anything… but I was paralyzed by fear. I couldn’t move.
I looked back at the park bench. The woman sat there motionless. I couldn’t understand why she didn’t help her daughter.
I reached out and pulled back the branches of the tree that were obscuring her face. What I saw made me scream out in terror.
It was the face of a dead woman.
Her face was purple, her eyes were bulging out and her tongue was protruding between her swollen lips. There was a scarf wrapped tightly around her neck and the end of it was tied to the branches of the tree above her. She had strangled herself.
The woman’s mouth opened and she mumbled, “I’m sorry, it’s my daughter…”
I don’t remember much after that. I think I must have fainted.
When I came back to my senses, I was lying on the ground. It was very dark and the park was deserted. I picked myself up and hurried home.
Later I found out that a woman had committed suicide in that park years before. Her daughter died in an accident and she blamed herself. The poor woman was so distraught that she took her own life.
The jungle gym has been demolished since then, but I will never forget what I saw.