I was 13 and was babysitting my neighbors’ kids. It was my first time, so the parents walked me through all the rules about the bathroom and tv and food and bedtime, etc. Just as the parents were taking off for the night, the mom came back in and whispered to me, “don’t go into the basement”.
As a teenager in the 80s, my mind went to all of the scariest movies that had basements. I avoided the door to the basement all night until I had put the kids to bed. Then I walked slowly to the door and put my ear against it. I heard what sounded like whimpering. And then it sounded like sad laughing. I ran to the couch and started watching tv to get my mind off of it, but then I heard something fall in the basement and knew someone was down there. I really don’t know how I got the courage/stupidity to do it, but I went over and opened the door. The whining instantly got louder.
I went down just three or four stairs so I could peek down....and I saw.....
Not a ghost. A goat.
As soon as the goat saw me, he started bleating loudly. It scared the crap out of me. I went upstairs and the goat was still bleating loudly...so much that it woke up the kids. The oldest girl came out and said, “Did you open the door to the basement?” I said, “Yeah, why?” She said, “When you do that, Carlos thinks you’re going to feed him and he starts yelling.” Thank God I knew it was a goat first, because if she had said that before I went down, I would’ve thought Carlos was some kidnapped person in the basement who would yell for food.
It became very funny to me. The mom came home and I told her what happened and she almost died laughing. They were repairing the goat pen and had to keep him in the basement for a few days. I still remember every moment of that night vividly.
(I would laugh harder at this girl's tale...except the people who owned our house in Castle Rock raised rabbits in the basement. A LOT of rabbits. The same people who kept an old schoolbus in the driveway, with tomato plants inside. For more weird babysitting stories, go here on Bored Panda. Thanks, guys!)