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The Canterville Ghost

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Chapter IV

For five days, the ghost did not leave his room. He was very weak and tired and his nerves were completely shattered. He also gave up the point of the blood-stain on the library floor. If the Otis family did not want it, they clearly did not deserve it. Whenever the Canterville ghost roamed the house now, he was careful to have oiled his chains and not to make a sound. However, the twins still played their tricks on him. They stretched strings across the corridor, over which he tripped in the dark, and once he slipped on a butter-slide, which the twins had constructed for him on the staircase. This so annoyed the ghost, that he decided to teach the twins a lesson and give them the fright of their lives.

All day long the ghost had prepared this grand event and at a quarter past one at night he finally glided out of his room and crept down the corridor. When he reached the twins' bedroom, he found the door slightly open. In order to frighten the boys enormously, he flung the door wide open, when a heavy jug of water fell right down on him, wetting him to the skin. The twins burst out in shrieks of laughter and the ghost fled.

He now gave up all hope of ever frightening this rude American family and, as he was very afraid of the twins, from now on he crept around the house as quietly as possible. One night, it was on the 19th of September, he went downstairs to see if there were any traces left of the blood-stain. It was about a quarter past two in the morning, and he thought that everyone was fast asleep, when suddenly from a dark corner two figures came running at him who waved their arms wildly above their heads and shouted “BOO!” in his ear. Full of panic, which under the circumstances was only natural, the ghost hurried back to his room.

After this he was not seen again at night. His feelings were so wounded that he just did not appear anymore.

Chapter V ►