As a child I used to love exploring the woods that made up one edge of the playground. It was not like wooded areas today with set trails.
There happened to be some points of interest there as well, like an old wishing well, an overgrown picnic table, and an abandoned house.
I only ever tried to enter it once and I never returned as a child after that trip.
I had only made it onto the porch when I saw a woman through the window, staring out at me with a look of pure surprise. I ran all the way back home without looking back.
I recently returned to my childhood hometown for a visit and was surprised to find the playground abandoned and most of the equipment gone or in disrepair.
The woods were still there and I decided to go through and see if the house was still there. It felt strange to see it again after nearly 30 years, just as I remembered it.
It seemed like time never touched the place. I decided to see if there was someone still living there who might be keeping the place standing.
I almost lost my nerve when I was back on the porch, but one look inside told me no one had lived there in ages. The door was cracked open so I entered.
I was just looking around the front room when I heard someone stepping onto the rickety porch outside.
It was just a little girl and she was more afraid than I was, until I realized the little girl was me.