A Tampa, Florida area woman recalls a cryptid canine, or, what she believes was a 'werewolf,' that had stalked her neighborhood in the late 1980s. What did they encounter?
I received the following account:
"All I know is that the encounter I experienced frightened me so much that even after all these years it still shakes me up to think about it. Until that evening, I have always thought of werewolves as being nothing more than just fairy tales, but that first encounter has left a huge question mark inside of me. I come from a family of skeptics, so I decided not to tell anyone about what happened to me. Then one night my brother came home trembling and pale. He told me about his experience and I felt relieved that I wasn’t the only one that seen something.
It was after 10 pm on New Year’s Eve in the late 1980s. We were living in a suburb of Tampa, Florida. It was either 1987 or 88. I was sitting out front of my parent’s home and instead of going out with my friends, I decided to stay home and celebrate the New Year with my family. My father’s car was parked in front of the house by the road, so I decided to sit on the hood, smoke a cigarette, and wait until midnight. The rest of my family was in the house celebrating.
After about an hour I heard a strange sound coming from the neighbor’s yard across the street. It sounded as though a man was moaning in pain. The street and the property were dark, so I couldn’t see much except for a small light that shined off in the distance on the back part of the property along a cinder block wall. The wall where the light was sitting wasn't finished yet. The whole property itself was wooded with trees and tall bushes. The bushes on the property stood around 5 ft. high and over and around 5 ft. in width. I kept looking in the direction of the sound to try and see what was causing it. My first thought was that maybe someone was hurt, but then the sound changed. It went from a moaning to a low-pitched gurgling, then growling.
The next thing I heard was a loud thud as though something huge jumped and landed behind one of the bushes in the back part of the property. The sounds that followed were the sounds of something seriously heavy, on all four legs darting behind large bushes moving towards me in a zig-zag pattern. I started questioning myself as to what the heck this thing was. Was it a horse or a dog it sounded so heavy and I could hear its breath when its feet hit the ground as it came closer.
I heard the growling again and it was like no dog I had ever heard.
It was at this point that reality hit me and I realized that this thing was coming towards me. I suddenly felt the rush of fear go right through me. It stopped behind a huge berry bush that was across the street from me which was about 15 to 20 feet away. It suddenly became quiet and I couldn’t hear the breathing or the growling anymore. I eased myself down off of the hood of the car because I didn’t want to make any sudden movements especially since it was so close. The front door was about 30 ft away from where I was and I didn’t know if I would make it. I didn’t know what this thing was and I didn’t want to find out. I was so scared I could hardly breathe. My parents had a lot of bushes and trees in their front yard as well, so I noticed a gap in between a couple of them and I started running.
As soon as I started running, that thing started coming after me. I could hear it behind me as it came across the street. I heard its nails scraping the asphalt once or twice as it crossed onto our property. I was not about to look back and as soon as I reached the front steps I jumped to the top step and quickly ran into the house and locked the door.
I was shaking so bad that I felt like I was going to pass out. Even with the music playing inside the house, I heard the thing outside the front door growling and then it went quiet. I heard another thud as though it jumped off the step onto the grass and I couldn’t hear it anymore. Suddenly, I heard my brother-in-law speak over my shoulder asking me what I was looking at. I jumped and thought I was going to choke on my own words. All I said to him was that whatever he did, do not go outside.
He started smiling and said ok. I guess he thought I was joking but then he realized I wasn’t. As soon as I took a couple steps away from the door, he opened the door and went outside to check, but didn’t go down the steps. He quickly came back in and didn’t say anything. I asked him if he saw anything and he said there was nothing there. I didn’t tell anyone about it. Not even my brother-in-law.
Later that night around 12:30am, after everything quieted down. I was in the kitchen drying dishes when I heard the most terrible snarling growl right outside the window where I was standing. I suddenly dropped the plate I was holding and it shattered on the floor. The fear crept back and I started trembling again realizing that the thing was still outside, but it was along the side of the house towards the back and not the front. I backed away staring at the window, but it was pitch black outside and I couldn’t see anything. My mother came into the kitchen and complained about me dropping her plate. I still didn’t say anything because I didn’t think my family would believe me. I did tell my father that I thought I saw someone outside looking into the window. He grabbed his gun and went outside with my brother-in-law and yelled trying to scare them away. It must have left after that because they didn’t see anything. Until now, my sister was the only one who knew only part of my story." M
The Black Diary: M.I.B, Women in Black, Black-Eyed Children, and Dangerous Books
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