Nostalgia and Exploring Secrets Behind Basement Door
Basement Door

Childhood Home

I hadn’t revisited my childhood home since my parent’s divorce, the last instance dating back to when I was a mere 5 years old. The notion of reclaiming this pivotal fragment of my history grew more significant, particularly now, as I stand on the precipice of marriage and the prospect of starting my own family. My father’s hands had shaped half of the house and the entire backyard, turning it into a repository of cherished memories from my formative years. As I wandered through the familiar rooms, each corner seemed to hold the perfection of my recollections, except for one enigmatic detail: the basement door.

Adjacent to the master bathroom, there was an Additional door, which I didn’t recall from my childhood. Strangely, it had three padlocks above the doorknob and a chain latch near the floor. My husband Joel noticed my reaction and asked if it had always been there. Unsure, I admitted my lack of knowledge about this mysterious door. Perplexed, I couldn’t fathom what purpose it might serve—perhaps an extra bedroom, but why the multiple locks?

Reassuringly, Joel suggested getting bolt cutters the next day to Unravel the Mystery. The notion of an extra room seemed implausible since there was minimal space between the master bath and the master bedroom, which were merely 8 feet apart in the hallway. Contemplating what the previous owners might have built in my childhood home perplexed me, even though I hadn’t lived there for years. Regardless, this building had always been my home.

The day was consumed by moving boxes into the expansive living room, triggering a flood of memories of the joyous times spent within these walls. Unfortunately, the substantial furniture was set to arrive from Maryland only the next day. When bedtime finally arrived, Joel and I improvised a sleeping area in the master bedroom with blankets and pillows, a surreal experience in the room that once belonged to my parents. Across the hall, the small room that used to be my childhood bedroom also held a trove of memories.

As I traversed the living room and dining area, I arrived at the hallway closest to the front of our home. There, I found another full bathroom and what used to be my older sister’s room. In its earlier life, it was my Nana’s room. Nana, my father’s mother, left a lasting impression on me despite passing away from a heart attack when I was just five years old.  My grandfather, departed two months before my birth. These late-night reflections, spurred by memories of my family, made it challenging to sleep.

Basement Door
Basement Door

The clock on my phone revealed that it was midnight. Although we lacked groceries, our kitchen boxes contained the essentials, including plates and glassware. I headed to the kitchen, letting the faucet run before filling a cup with water. An unusual noise diverted my attention; it seemed to emanate not from the living room but from the locked door between the master bath and bedroom. Wary but not overly concerned, I pressed my ear against the door, discerning a skittering sound, like claws on cement—perhaps squirrels or raccoons, common nocturnal visitors to basements and attics in Illinois.

Despite the disrupted sleep, morning arrived, and I decided to start unpacking. Joel, my companion, still dozed peacefully around 11:00 a.m. The abundance of cabinet space and a spacious kitchen brought me joy. As I envisioned the space coming together with the arrival of furniture, my excitement surged. However, the peace was interrupted by the persistent skittering and scratching sounds. Setting aside the plates, I leaned towards the door again. The noises were closer and more frequent this time. An uneasy thought crossed my mind—could it be mice? Having faced numerous issues with mice during my previous residency in this farm town, I was determined not to let them infiltrate my new home.

After graduating from high school, I experienced a peculiar incident where a creature unexpectedly jumped down my mom’s shirt, and in a bizarre twist, my hamster ended up pregnant. Amidst the commotion, there were strange sounds, resembling boxes toppling over, indicating a potential colony of mysterious creatures. Curious about the situation, I ventured to the bedroom to wake up my partner, Joel.

“Get up, babe. We need to start the day,” I whispered, gently kissing his cheek. Joel chuckled and muttered in response, pulling me into a warm hug. As much as I adored him, his penchant for jokes sometimes interfered with getting things done.

“No, I want to stay here all day with you, love,” he teased.

“Sorry, but we have things to do,” I insisted, pushing his long curls away from his face. “Brush your teeth and get up.”

Upon our return from Walmart, armed with supplies like mouse traps, cheese, flashlights, replacement padlocks, keys, and bolt cutters, Joel and I prepared to unlock a mysterious door. Working together, we pressed the bolt cutters to snap the padlocks, and Joel effortlessly dealt with a rusted chain lock.

Unlocking the door revealed a musty, stale air, with dust hanging in the void. A staircase led down into darkness. “It’s a basement door,” Joel noted, shining his flashlight down the creaky stairs. Examining the door, he found long gouges, speculating that a dog may have been kept down there.

“Bubba used to scratch at the back door like this when he wanted to come in,” I recalled. With my flashlight in hand, I cautiously descended the creaky stairs, reminiscent of my Grandma’s old basement.

I surveyed the basement door, a chaotic maze of dusty boxes and storage tubs. The Fallen Tower of boxes, which had crashed the night before when Joel and I were setting traps, caught my eye. Intrigued, we decided to explore further. The basement stretched extensively beneath the entire house, with most of it partitioned off for storage. However, towards the back, a hidden living space emerged—complete with a refrigerator, worn-out sofa, television, and a twin-sized cot. It was a treasure trove of forgotten belongings.

Joel flicked on a light switch, revealing a scene enveloped in thick layers of dust. The scratched-up sofa hinted at the presence of curious feline intruders, but upon closer inspection, the tracks in the dust resembled oversized raccoon prints. Distracted momentarily, Joel discovered a half-empty jar of pickles in the fridge. Oddly enough, it wasn’t the first time we had encountered such a sight in our year of living in the house.

Excitement bubbled within me as I prepared to share the big news with Joel—he was going to be a father. Together, we delved into the basement, now on a mission to transform it into a suitable space for our impending arrival. Amidst the clutter, we stumbled upon an array of baby toys and playthings, even a disassembled crib. The sheer volume of items was peculiar, but the anticipation of our baby overshadowed any concerns.

After some cleaning and organizing, Joel and I decided to convert my old bedroom into a nursery. The joy of impending parenthood eclipsed the oddities of the basement. However, as the months passed and our baby boy, Joa Michael, finally arrived, we began to notice peculiar occurrences. Our midnight snacks were mysteriously nibbled on, and bites were missing from our food. Initially dismissing it as coincidental, little did we know that these small anomalies were the first signs of something more unsettling in our seemingly ordinary basement.

Mysterious Events in the Early Days: A Terrifying Encounter at Home

In the infancy of my son Joa, an inexplicable and unsettling incident transpired while my husband Joel was away at work. Engaged in the routine task of giving my newborn a bath in the front hall bathroom, I was abruptly interrupted by the disconcerting sound of scratches echoing from the wood. Attempting to brush them off, I aimed to complete the bath before settling Joa for the night. However, the scratches grew louder and more persistent.

A sudden, forceful slam reverberated through the house, prompting me to swiftly scoop up my baby, cradling him protectively against my chest. Bewildered, I noticed the Parlor door was securely closed and locked, but my attention was drawn to the opposite end of the hall. The door to the basement door stood wide open, its impact so intense that it left a hole in the wall from the knob.

Alarmed and fearing for my baby’s safety, I hastened to the kitchen, grabbing our

Largest Knife with the blade facing outward, ready to defend. Unsettling sounds emanated from Joa’s bedroom – biting, gnawing, and growling. Trembling, I awaited Joel’s return.

As Joel’s car pulled into the driveway, diverting my gaze for a moment, the door slammed shut on its own. Suppressing a scream, I recounted the chilling events to Joel as we cautiously approached our son’s room. There, a toy we had brought up from the basement door lay chewed in half, validating my harrowing experience.

Joel, attempting to calm my frayed nerves, investigated the basement door but found nothing amiss. To soothe my anxieties, he reinstalled two padlocks on the basement door. Over the next two years, we diligently worked to empty the basement, parting with possessions through yard sales and discarding the remnants. Our efforts ultimately transformed the once eerie space into a more reassuring part of our home.

Joa’s Fascination with the Basement Door

In our family home, a peculiar pattern emerged in the way we decorated. While Nana adorned the house with her extensive collection of clown figurines, my parents kept things relatively bare. Joa, our lively toddler, had the run of the house, exploring with the exuberance typical of his age—falls, bumps, and attempts at talking included.

As Joa grew, so did his peculiar fascination with the basement door, a feature that had started to grate on my nerves. Joel, my partner, brought to my attention Joa’s odd behavior. Joa seemed fixated on the door, peering underneath and even attempting to reach his fingers beneath it. My frustration mounted, and I contemplated sealing off the basement entirely.

By the time Joa turned five, his interest in the door became more pronounced. He not only shared his fixation with the kids I babysat but also bragged about being able to open the door and access the mysterious contents within. Skeptical, I dismissed it as childish bravado, convinced he couldn’t reach the locks situated well above his head.

One day, however, Joel woke me in the dead of night, his pallor betraying an unsettling discovery. Without uttering a word, he led me to the doorway, where I witnessed Joa standing on a chair, meticulously loosening the screws on the padlocks with a screwdriver. Startled, Joa dropped the tool and burst into tears as soon as he noticed our presence. The realization hit us — he knew he was in trouble.

Returning him to bed, we restored the chair and tightened the screws. But Joa’s distress lingered throughout the night. This incident left us deeply unsettled, raising questions about the mysteries hidden behind the basement door and the true extent of Joa’s curiosity.

Descent into the Unknown


To console my distressed son, I managed to coax him into sharing his feelings. Mr. Nails, a mysterious presence, urged me to unlock the basement door, claiming he wanted to join us. As my son spoke through sniffles, he mentioned a lost toy, possibly belonging to Mr. Nails. Determined to investigate, I asked Joel to stay with Joa while I ventured into the basement, armed with a baseball bat.

With trepidation, I unlocked the door, revealing a dark void that quickly transformed into a dimly lit space as I flicked on the lights. It was 2 in the morning, and the urgency in Jo’s tone pushed me to explore further. As I descended the stairs, the basement door ominously creaked shut, prompting me to call for my husband, but there was only silence in response.

Alone in the basement’s confined living space, a sense of unease settled over me. I scoured the area for any sign of the supposed toy, using a flashlight to illuminate the darker corners. However, the scratching noises that had haunted us since our move persisted, indicating something more sinister than a misplaced plaything.

Frustration and fear converged within me, prompting a desperate outburst. I bellowed, demanding whatever lurked in the shadows to reveal itself. The basement’s cold floor seemed to amplify the tension, and the eerie silence from my family upstairs added to my growing unease.

Suddenly, a rush of footsteps echoed up the stairs, followed by the basement door slamming against the wall. My heart raced as relief washed over me, and I exclaimed, “Boys, it’s been two months since Joa and Joel were murdered.” The disturbing events in the basement had only scratched the surface of a deeper, unsettling mystery.

Battle with Mr. Nails in My Childhood Home

In the eerie silence of my childhood home, I took a drastic step to confront the mysterious entity that had haunted me for years. Sealing off the basement door, I recreated the past, only to face the deafening silence that tormented my memories. Unbeknownst to me, the true terror lay in the basement, where an otherworldly force seemed responsible for the murder of my family.

Living in a town where murder was a rarity, I couldn’t shake the feeling that it wasn’t a human perpetrator. Determined to unveil the truth, I prepared for two months, gathering the tools and courage needed to confront this malevolent force – Mr. Nails. With daylight on my side, I dismantled the makeshift wall, revealing the ominous basement door.

Asserting my ownership of the house, I vehemently declared that I wouldn’t surrender it to this monstrous entity. Armed with a sledgehammer, I tore down the door, leaving it inoperable. The stale air of the basement greeted me, reminiscent of the first time we opened the door. This time, however, Mr. Nails was ready to face me.

As the light illuminated the grotesque figure, I witnessed its lanky form, with skin clinging to bone, pure white hair obscuring its face, and shrouded in white robes. Despite its emaciated appearance, it exuded an unsettling aura. Long, scraping sounds echoed as it emerged from the shadows, revealing 3-inch claws on its feet.

The battle for my home had begun, and I was ready to face the entity that had stolen the tranquility of my sanctuary. The struggle to reclaim my house from Mr. Nails was a harrowing confrontation with the unknown, as I stood firm against the malevolent force that had plagued my existence.


The journey, though tinged with tragedy, became a testament to the resilience of the human spirit. As I confronted the supernatural force lurking in the depths, I reclaimed not just my childhood home but also a sense of ownership over my past and present. The story serves as a reminder that sometimes, behind the closed doors of our memories, there are mysteries waiting to be unveiled, adding complexity and depth to the narratives of our lives.


By Sara Alex

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