Thank you for all your wonderful comments you posted while I was away! :D

Monday, 22 October 2012

The Cursed Dolls

Note: I'm not the authour of this story. I've translated it from original Japanese into English. Please do NOT copy and paste it somewhere else on the web without my permission.

Due to the nature of my job I often had to move house. Sometimes we lived in rented apartments and sometimes in rented houses.
This happened when I was transferred to  a place called Hagi in Yamaguchi prefecture. There I found a cheap house for rent and decided to take it. It was overall a good property but there were a few drawbacks; although it was large it was a bit ramshackle and it also stood isolated way back in the mountain.

Nearly a month had passed since we started living in the house when one day my daughter found a strange box in the garden.
Now, during my first holiday there I did go around the inside and outside of the house, taking time
to check everything over to make sure all was well; so I was sure there was no such thing as a box in the garden before. I would definitely have noticed it if it were there because it had a very characteristic look.

Although I think my psychic power is next to none, I could sense there was something really uncanny about the box .
If only I had made a right choice then, I probably wouldn't have had to go through all the terrifying experience that followed.
But I decided to burn the ill-fated box.
I am sure anyone with a common sense would have either thrown away or destroyed the thing. At the time it seemed to me there were no better choices.
Or so I thought.

A few days later, a terrible incident took place.
My friend had a car accident.
The car went up in flames and by the time she was taken to the hospital she had already stopped breathing, having suffered burns all over her body.
Again a few more days had passed when yet another friend of mine, who, while having a bonfire in her garden, caught fire by accident, and suffered severe burns on both her right arm and the right side of her face.

I went to visit the friend in the hospital and asked her what had happened.
She told me that, just a few days before the accident, she dreamt that she was being burnt alive.
I am someone who does not believe in such things as superstition, but this time I thought maybe I knew what might have caused those accidents...

After I left the hospital I immediately went home and searched the garden.
I found the small hole where I tried to burn the box and discovered that the box had survived the fire.
I remember that, just when I reached out to get the box,  I felt an awful chill come over me. Some dolls tumbled out of the box.

There were three dolls in all. One of them had been burnt to a crisp, and another one was only half-burnt.
The last one was completely intact. They were all traditional Japanese girl dolls wearing kimonos.
When I picked up the half-burnt doll, the doll's kimono crumbled away.

And the minutes I saw the doll's now bare back I was struck by utter terror.
My friend's name was written on it. The one that was completely burnt was too blackened so I couldn't make anything out but I think I'd had enough information to guess what might have been written on there.
Because the one that was left intact had my name on it.

Everything was a mystery. Who did this thing?
Three of  us didn't particularly had anything special between us. I have a lot of other friends.
I could not think of anyone holding a grudge against me. Why was the thing left in this house...?
Was there someone living here before me who had a grudge against me? But I have no acquaintances living in Yamaguchi prefecture.

Everything was just so extraordinary.

I moved out of the house soon after the incident.
I took the dolls to a shrine. I can not forget what the person at the shrine told me then:

"I  tried to purge them, but they are not something you can purge.
The grudge that infests these dolls are not of human origin."


  1. Why I chose to read this at 1:42am I shall never know. I'm just glad I don't have any dolls in my room. Just my Garfield plushie, and I'd never burn him. :p

  2. Wow you updated! Great blog btw. I found it two years ago and I STILL can't finish all the posted stories. Good thing I have Halloween to remind me that I can always come back here for a scare.

  3. @Adorably Dead: no, reading a ghost story in the dead of night is never a good idea! Ever since I started updating this blog again I feel a bit scared when I go to sleep! lol Yes, give your Garfield a cuddle, it should calm your nerves down!

    @VisceralMel: Thank you dear. Very good of you to leave a comment! Yes I forgot it is nearly Halloween! Best time to post ghost stories! :)

  4. hmm. maybe something inside the box was meant to be a gift from the entity, but you never know what its intentions are...
    oh i'd burn chucky from child's play right away if he ever came to play with me ^^

  5. ohmygod....

    i have a bunch of dolls O__o
    fortunately they're not scary as Japanese traditional dolls >w<

  6. i seriously seriously hate dolls

  7. @ryuu: chucky! that creepy doll! I never watched that movie but it looks very scary!


    no, you'll be alright :) Yeah those traditional Japanese dolls are creepy. My parentes used to have one in their bedroom and I woudld not look at it at night!

    @HN3: it seems we all have the same opinion about dolls! lol

  8. Hi Saya,

    Thanks for sharing this story. Speaking of boxes, recently I overheard my Japanese colleagues talking about 「子取り箱」. However, when I asked them about it, they politely shifted the topic back to work. I felt an aura(?) of unease coming from them and let the topic slide.

    At home, I tried to search for information in both English and Japanese. I managed to get very little information about it except that it is an urban legend about a cursed item made by a group of repressed people in the past.

    Have you heard of anything about it?

  9. @Dethyl: Hi! Yes, I have indeed heard of this 「子取り箱」. It's weird those Japanese colleagues of yours were talking about it at work??

    I have myself thought about sharing this story with you people, but the original story from which all the legends about 子取り箱 started is such a long story, and apart from the trouble of translating it all, I wasn't sure if you people would be interested in hearing it. It is also alleged to be dangerous for young women and children to know about it.

    But if you so wish I would be happy to translate it. It's gonna take me sometime though.

  10. Hi Saya,

    Thanks for replying so quickly! I feel that it is up to you, whether you'd like to translate it or not.

    Also, I wouldn't want to put anyone in danger. Sometimes, certain things can't be explained...

  11. 子取り箱 <--- this whatever it is has got me curious... hmmm...

  12. @Dethyl: OK, I'll think about it! And what a nice man you are to be concerned about others!

    @ryuu: really? The word reads "Kotori-bako." It is an interesting story. I might translate it!

  13. Well considering that I'm a young woman (19)I do not think I should read it, but I still would. Also since this is pertaining to dolls, I had an puppet that was a clown and it was the one where you control it with the "X". It was creepy to me (maybe because I didn't understand it.

    Dethyl if your a young female (to me thats before 40, or that appears young maybe your coworkers are also looking out for your safety.

    (I've been trying to post a comment all this time to older posts, and my computer is now being nice)

    Saya: also in some older posts someone posted another site that had the "hide and seek" as well as the "elevator" one. They talked about the "living doll" witch cheeped me out. I have a few dolls in my room, and shouldn't have any because of my asthma, and now I'm paranoid they will come to life (even though I understand why the ritual allows them to be possessed). I find all of these stories interesting, although they are used to creep people I believe they are not fully true but used as a hidden meaning to teach a lesson. Superstitions usually date to early times and its because of a common fear among a group of people and the reasoning is to prevent calamity (like staying away from rivers at specific times because a something will hurt you- it could be relating to the tides). I don' think I have ESP or anything like that, I just feel more in tune with people and my surroundings at times. like my current home gave my father an unwelcoming feeling, but I think it's because we were going though a rocky time and peoples emotions linger more than anything. (I've read a book about aura and reading it so that's also related to some beliefs). I can seance my grandparents around Christmas sometimes (and I never met them since they died before I was born), also the day my friends mother died at 2:55am I closed my eyes fell into a conscious dream and saw a light emitting from my window and a shadow like figure. I had no fear and the next day I found out about my friend's mother, I feel that was her saying goodbye. I also know hat there's a man in 1920's attire that I've seen at least 3 or 4 times in my life. The 2nd time the name "Thomas" poped into my head, and about a year latter I found out my fathers uncle had that name who was born in 1929, and about the same height. I eventually saw a photo of him and I just know thats him (always looking like a shadow, usually shadows are an omen but I've only seen one bad and that one gave me a negative feeling).
    On a side note if you could instead of posting something scary tell us a purifying ritual or things that can purge evil away. Also how to make them. I think it would be a good way to lighten the mood without straying too far away from the scary stories. I heard that alcohol, salt/ salt-water, are the best things to purify with, could you clarify if possible?

    sorry for this long comment I have much to express ><

    also refer to me as Dest I love your blog so I'll be checking in from time to time. Also I want to learn more about Japanese culture.

    have a good day :)

  14. ah i see so that's what it was if you have time to translate it then please do so don't worry because i can wait forever hehe =P

  15. @Anon who wrote a long comment: Sorry dear. Somehow your comment ended up in the spam box.

    Don't be sorry for writing a long comment! Your stories are all very interesting. I haven't had as many as ghostly experiences as you!

    I've heard of the living doll ritual. In fact I was gonna post an article about it soo.

    a purifying ritual..hmmm...I will look into it, dear. If I find a good one I'll definitely post it.

    Thank you dear, and take care! :)

  16. @ryuu: OK, ryuu. I might translate it, with a bit warning sign at the top! I've been feeling slightly uneasy too since I read the kotori-bako story, after all I am a young woman too.

  17. oh no... i hope you're okay saya

  18. If you do decide to translate the story, I'll be looking forward to reading it.

    Other than that, I also hope you're okay.

  19. @Diogo: Thank you Diogo, for your kind concern.
    I'm fine. I regard a curse as similar to a hypnotic suggestion. That is why I put a waning at the top of the blog, saying you shouldn't read this blog if you are too young or mentally disturubed or tend to be easily influenced by negative things.

  20. @ryuu: oh I forgot. Thank you ryuu. As I said in the comment above I'm quite OK! :)

  21. 子取り箱>Kotori-bako>go take a child (according to google translate)
    I'm very interested but (;.;) i'm a young girl

    This story made me sad. I love dolls but I also love stories with creepy dolls. I feel very sorry for the dolls and the girls though, being cursed and burned - how awful!

  22. うわ~ すごい!怖い! さやさんの怪談を読むことが大好き! ^0^ ありがとうございました!

  23. @Princess Pon: you'd better not read Kotori-bako then!
    I also love stories about creepy dolls! :)

    @katie: こちらこそ、ありがとう!また来てね!(^▽^)

  24. Eek! Creepy dolls! I wonder who- or what- put a curse on the lady. Traditional Japanese dolls are very beautiful, but also a bit eerie. My cousin has a couple and whenever I visit her I always get the feeling the dolls are staring at me.

  25. @Tani: your cousin has some Japanese dolls? That sounds unusual! (But considering my own mother has many antique French bisque dolls at home, that may seem unusual to some people too!)

    I agree some Japanese dolls are very eerie! I wouldn't sleep in the same room as those dolls! lol

  26. sorry Saya, finally saw that a comment got through >< (the long one that was a pain to type)

    I decided to back track a bit since I have the time, and i see you have that story up. I know that slt is considered important and/ or alcohol. do you know why that is by chance? (my gess is because in Christan religions juses (can't spell his name atm) made his blood into wine, and salt because supposedly it's a pure substance. I know it was used for preservation of meat before we had the fridge. Like the reason for throwing salt behind your back when you spill it was to blind the devil)

    sorry I said this in the past about the salt ect. Just re read my comment.

    On a serious note but kinda funny (i think it's funny in the morbid seance)I have a male friend who's living with a childhood pal and his girlfriend. Almost every morning they find a lower cabinet open in their kitchen (they think it's a about a 4 year old girl playing, and they believe the negative spirit is the one that killed her.) I haven't seen anything or had an off feeling, and I've spent some nights over there. The childhood friend (not mine but the guy's) wakes the eirlest for work so I think she could be closing it. I have heard a cup "clack" when it hit their counter and no one was in there. (I had yet to hear anyone leave the room or get out of the bed)

    But what I find funny but it's me trying to make light of it is the negative enty attacked his childhood friend while she was asleep. she awoke with 3 scratches (like when you scratch your arm from top to bottom in 1 line/ motion) on her outer thigh, and they were about 10+cm long (I use metric quiet a bit because I love chemistry and similar sciences, even though I want to major in Bio psychology/ psychiatry) But I joke around saying it's because shes the only lesbian one here, the spirit needs us to have at least dome significant attraction to the opposite gender.

    I also don't consider them as meany as my mom or dad. My dad had a granduncle yell at him in the middle of the night telling him to straighten up his act. My father never met this granduncle and it was only his head. He described the scars he had to a T. Even the one you could not make out in the old photo!

    My mother had a cat hiss at a corner in her room and then run off and brake a vase my grandmother had loved that was on top of a piano. This ct would never go on top of that piano either!

    I believe in the supernatural/ paranormal, but I also do not. It's only because I believe we can psych yourself out and the brain messes with our heads.

    (do not know if I said this up top but just call me Dest, and I will warn you even though English is ,my 1st language, I am not a very good speller so some words may be quite off)

    also pertaining to Kotori-bako, you could always do it in segments. Just always state at the top a warning like you always do. I may ask my friend to ask his mom and grandma about it. ( I was looking for that story so it's another reason why I back tracked to this story and discovered my comment went through :D)

    Sorry again for the long comments. I have more then I should to say, I tend to go on tangents and digress from my main thought, then suddenly go back to the main point.

  27. @Dest: Don't be sorry dear, that's all fine with me!

    From ancient times salt has been used as preservative for food, and has been known for its powerful purifying and disinfecting property. The ancients appreciated salt as a very special substance.
    Also there is a description of the Japanese god Izanagi purifying himself in sea after he's come back from the underworld. I think the practice of using salt as purifier has its origin in these things.

    It looks like you've had your share of paranormal experiences!
    But as you say some of these could be explained away as psychological phenomenon, I guess!

    I do hope to translate the kotori bako story sometime in the near future, when I feel like it!

    Thank you for your comment! :)

  28. Thank you very much for explaining Saya. I tend to say sorry for things I shouldn't, but I gess thats because I have a guilty conscious. I hope to her more stories from you because it's one of the things I look forward to do when I come home from school :)
    Have a good day.

  29. @Dest: just don't worry, dear, you're not doing anything wrong!
    It's good you enjoy my stories! You have a good day too and take care! :D

  30. I love stories about dolls, it reminds me of a jp movie I saw of a doll that kept pursuing a girl and in the end it seems the doll was possesed by the spirit of her older sister that had died in a fire. Also the one about the Mary doll that keeps calling was quite creepy.


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