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  • Writer's pictureArthur Mills

Candle Face Victim #13: Beneath the Surface: The Drowning Ghost’s Story

Candle Face Victim #13: Beneath the Surface: The Drowning Ghost’s Story

Candle Face Victim # 13

February 13, 2024

At 1:00 am, I find myself paralyzed in front of a glowing screen, cursor blinking mockingly, my hands shaking too fiercely to type, my consciousness trapped by an overwhelming fog of distress. I’m resigned to this state of limbo, waiting until clarity and sensation return to me. Earlier, I retired prematurely to my bed, the day’s yardwork a harsh reminder of my waning youth. It’s been a peaceful three weeks since the last of my nocturnal encounters—marked by significant progress. I believe I’ve unearthed the identity of Victim # 11, and a paranormal investigative team from Texas has expressed keen interest in aiding with the investigation into Victim # 11’s story. There’s more to be discovered about Victim # 11, suggesting perhaps the spirits have granted me this break to ponder the intricacies of the case.

Then, the tranquility was shattered. Drifting into sleep early this evening, I was jolted awake by the now-familiar creaking of the wooden floorboards. Looming above me stood a figure, his form drenched and dripping. His icy grip immobilized me as I attempted to rise, his frigid palms pressing down on my shoulders. With a swift blow, he struck me and then, horrifyingly, began to regurgitate water directly into my mouth, inducing a desperate gag reflex. My attempts to escape were futile; my energy sapped away with each passing moment. Just as I neared the brink of asphyxiation, he ceased his torment, delivering another wet slap across my face as a parting gesture. He demanded my attention to his story again, a stern reminder not to neglect him. Recognition dawned on me—he was the visitor from late December 2023. I had grown accustomed to such apparitions, perhaps even a bit negligent. After he vanished that night, I promised to document his testimony in the morning. But morning led to afternoon, then evening, and days turned into weeks until his story was buried beneath layers of procrastination. It wasn’t until the January 11, 2024, interview on Beyond Believe Talk that I briefly mentioned his account, yet I failed again to commit his haunting visitation to writing. He retold me his story:

Under the starry Texas night, the boat rocked gently on the dark waters of the cove. My two sons slept soundly in cozy spots on the boat’s deck. My wife had opted to stay with relatives, leaving me alone with the boys for an overnight boat trip on the west side of Austin. The night was calm, the air crisp, and the distant hum of the city seemed worlds away.
As I gazed at my slumbering sons, I marveled at their innocence and the profound impact our beliefs could have on them. They wanted ghost stories, their young minds craving the thrill of the unknown. But I, a staunch non-believer in all things supernatural, had scoffed at the notion and scolded them for seeking stories of ghosts and spooks. Instead, I had filled their young minds with stories of real-world politicians and historical figures, thinking it was a better education.
However, one of my sons interrupted me during a particularly dry story about a long-dead statesman. “Please, Dad,” he pleaded, “tell us a ghost story. We’re in the dark, and it’s spooky. We want to hear about Candle Face.”
His younger brother perked up, clutching his teddy bear with wide eyes. I hesitated, momentarily silenced by their earnest desire for something beyond the mundane. Then, with a sigh, I relented and began:
“In the heart of Austin, there was a spooky legend about Candle Face, a ghost who, they said, did spooky things to folks who didn’t believe in her. But there was a boy named William who thought it was all make-believe.”
My sons leaned in, their imaginations fueled by the promise of an eerie ghost story. As I spun the story, I couldn’t help but feel the weight of my own disbelief in the supernatural. My words were just that—words, void of the conviction that would have made the story truly frightening.
I continued, recounting William’s brave journey into the dark creek where Candle Face was rumored to live. The wind blowing across the boat seemed to echo around us as I spoke. I described the ghostly figure, a little girl with a face resembling melted candle wax, and William’s fearless declaration, “I don’t believe in you, Candle Face!” The ghost wailed, and then it vanished. William emerged unscathed, his skepticism unshaken.
My story concluded, and my sons exchanged disappointed glances. “Dad, that’s not a scary story,” said my oldest son, crossing his arms.
“Ghosts aren’t real; Candle Face isn’t real,” I asserted, dismissing their concerns. “Come on, time for bed.”
While my sons settled into their sleeping bags, I found myself restless. My familiarity with the water drew me, and a midnight swim beckoned. I dove into the dark waters, the coolness enveloping me. The cove was unnervingly quiet, a stark contrast to the excitement of the evening.
As my eyes adjusted to the darkness, I noticed something amiss. The knot that had secured my boat to the dock seemed undone. Anxiety coursed through me, and I swam toward the dock, my heart pounding in my chest.
Reaching the dock, I saw a pair of legs, small and delicate. My eyes traveled upward, and there, before me, stood a little girl. Her hair hung in long, tangled strands, obscuring her face. When I finally saw her features, they were marred, as if by fire, and her appearance was strikingly familiar.
It was Candle Face.
Before I could react, her hot, clammy hand gripped my head, and she plunged me back into the water. Panic surged as I struggled to hold my breath, but her strength was unrelenting. She lifted me just before I blacked out, coughing and gasping for air.
Candle Face’s voice, voice like a phantom’s breath, filled the night. “You do not believe. But your life depends on it.”
Her words hung in the air, echoing through the dark. Paralyzed by fear and confusion, I could only listen as she began to tell her story. It was a tale of tragedy, betrayal, and a restless spirit condemned to wander the world, seeking acknowledgment and belief.
As Candle Face spoke, her voice carried the weight of ages, and her story resonated with a poignant sadness. She explained how belief could be a lifeline for lost souls like her and how the power of conviction could bridge the gap between the living and the dead.
“Believe in me,” she implored, her ghostly hollow eye sockets burning unnervingly. “Believe, for your life depends on it.”
With trembling limbs and a mind clouded by terror, I stammered, “I...I can’t.”
Candle Face’s grip tightened, and again, she plunged me beneath the water’s surface. Panic and dread overwhelmed me as I struggled to hold my breath again, to hold onto consciousness. She repeated the torment, lifting my head just enough to prolong my agony.
The minutes stretched into an hour, and my strength waned. The ghostly figure showed no mercy, her determination unwavering. Her story had become my nightmare and belief, a choice I couldn’t make. I had become the protagonist in the very legend I had dismissed, just like so many others in Candle Face’s lair.
Finally, as my vision blurred and my body weakened, Candle Face held my head beneath the water’s surface. I felt the cold embrace of the water, its inky depths swallowing me whole. My world grew dark, and the discord of fear and doubt faded into a watery silence.
In that terrifying moment, I realized the profound truth of her story—the power of belief, the potency of the unknown, and the consequences of denying the mysteries of life and death. As the water closed in around me, I understood that sometimes, disbelief could be the most difficult choice of all.
And so, my story ends, a cautionary story of a man who refused to believe until it was too late. It is a lesson etched in water and darkness, serving as a reminder that, in the vast expanse of the universe, there are forces beyond our comprehension, and sometimes, the most terrifying stories are the ones that refuse to be ignored.

As the spirit, still clad in garments heavy with water and streaked with green slime, offered me a final, sad farewell, his expression was one of regret for the ordeal he had subjected me to. With a grave turn, he paused to deliver an alarming warning, “Give grave attention to your nocturnal visitors, for any more falter or delay shall summon irrevocable doom. Beware, for upon your next oversight, the wrath of Candle Face shall descend upon you, her vengeance far worse than you can imagine as retribution for your hesitancy.” With these words hanging in the air, he receded into the darkness from whence he came.

Personal Note to My Readers

This encounter marks a terrifying first; a spirit has made physical contact with me. In a prior attempt to make contact, a female spirit retreated as I reached out to her. However, this visit was different, with the spirit delivering two forceful strikes to my face and subjecting me to a near-drowning experience with his vomit. Perhaps fortune was on my side; a previous visitor recounted a disturbing story of neglecting to update a blog post about an encounter with Candle Face, a negligence that Candle Face met with lethal retribution. In light of such a fate, enduring a slap and inhaling puke seems a lesser evil.


Key To Understanding

To ensure readers grasp the full context and significance of this article, it’s crucial to be familiar with Arthur Mills’ award-winning memoir The Empty Lot Next Door, inspired by actual ghostly events in Austin, TX. The book provides essential background information, and without it, the nuances and depth of this article might not be fully appreciated. Therefore, reading The Empty Lot Next Door is highly recommended for a more enriched and coherent understanding of this article’s content and implications.

To purchase The Empty Lot Next Door, please visit Amazon


Apr 14

First off, I can't sign up to be a member. How do I do it? Or do I just enter my email in the form above the blog? Second, I think I know who this person is. Sounds alot like a missing rich man who disappeared while boating with his two children. I think it happened in Lake Travis in the late 90s when I was attended Lake Travis High School. I don't remember the details though. You should check it out.

Arthur Mills
Arthur Mills
Apr 14
Replying to

Regarding membership, I haven't developed a functional member portal yet. Despite my efforts, member identities are currently visible to all users. While members could potentially set their profiles to private, it appears relatively easy to deduce their identities, so I'm inclined to forego the member portal altogether. Most individuals who have contacted me express a desire to remain anonymous, with many using fake email addresses. Therefore, implementing a member portal may jeopardize the anonymity of our members.



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