Ghost Stories

The Hitchhiker

A Massachusetts Ghost Story

retold by 

S.E. Schlosser

Our friends Josh and Sandy were firm believers in ghosts and claimed to have seen the mysterious red-haired phantom that haunted Route 44. My wife and I were sitting with them at dinner one night, and we started kidding them about it.
      “Funny how we’ve never seen him, and we drive that stretch of road all the time,” my wife Jill drawled.
      “You skeptic,” Sandy said, emphasizing the word as if it were a curse.  “One of these days, you’re gonna find out I’m right. And you’ll owe me a pizza.”
       “If I ever see the ghostly hitchhiker, I’ll buy you a large pizza every day for a year,” I promised. 
       The evening ended pleasantly, and it wasn’t long before Jill and I were driving home through the crisp fall air.
     “Let’s take Route 44,” Jill said suddenly, flashing me a sideways look.
     “Hoping to see a ghost?” I chuckled, taking the turn as she directed.
      “Ha!” Jill snorted derisively. She yawned and turned her head to face the passenger window. Suddenly, she let out a shriek of sheer terror. I jumped and glanced sideways, my hands shaking on the steering wheel. A red-haired man with a bushy beard wearing a plaid shirt and blue jeans was running right next to the passenger side of the car. He kept glancing in the window and leering at Jill.
      Heart pounding in terror, I hit the gas. A moment later, I glanced in the rearview mirror and saw the red-haired man was sitting in the back seat of our car. Jill shrieked again and began pummeling the phantom with her purse.
      I kept looking back and forth between my wife, the phantom, and the road ahead, determined that I was not going to let the red-haired ghost force us into a fatal accident.
I glanced toward the back seat for a moment, and the ghost laughed, a laugh that made my teeth tingle and the hairs on my neck stand up.
      “Hail Mary, full of grace; the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.” Jill gabbled the words of the rosary. Glancing in the mirror, I saw the phantom grimace as she recited the holy words. Then he vanished without a trace.
      I got us out of there much faster than the speed limit allowed. I was shaking from head to toe, and Jill was sobbing hysterically. As soon as I pulled into the driveway and turned off the car, I swept my wife into my arms and held her as tightly as I could. We clung together for a long time, until both of us had stopped shaking and Jill’s sobs had abated.
      “I want to go inside,” Jill whispered against my neck, and I nodded, not trusting my voice.
      That night we discussed the incident, but oddly enough, neither of us had nightmares. When we woke in the morning, I felt much better about the whole thing, until I remembered my promise to Sandy the night before. I groaned aloud and then clapped a hand over my mouth lest the sound wake my wife. Too late. She opened her green eyes and gave me a sleepy smile.
       “You owe Sandy a year’s worth of pizza,” Jill said.
      “I most certainly do,” I replied, rubbing the back of her neck gently. “I most certainly do!”




hey can i have a slice?

that was pretty scary

preety cool

I liked your story, but it dosnt make much sence.. :L

Is it just me or did anyone else imagine Zach Galifianakis as the spectre?

Keep it coimng, writers, this is good stuff.


so not scary

that was sortof creepy and lame but i do believe in ghosts

is it the guy off the simpsons??!! lol


Wow! Nice one....This happened to you? Approve this if it happened to you!

That's scary i have would been scared the heck out if i was to do that

awsome story! i love it

i herd many tails of this its pretty scary

hiyaaaaa i luv this story lol i wonder wa nxt weeks will be??????? xx

OMG! I just read this story to my children and they told me to ask is this true! please tell us as soon as possible thanks!



GREAT story! A perfect Halloween treat! Thanks.

Good story, Very creepy :O

F-ing scary!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i wish i was sandy

ummm Im pretty sure that the original story was about a man who picked up a girl and then he took her home. He then noticed she left her scarf behind so he walked to the front step to go give it to her, as soon as he gave the scarf to the elderly woman inside, she began to cry. The man asked why she was crying and the woman said "shes been dead for a long time" and began to cry some more! ??? am I right ??

This is a great scary story! It had me scared!

cool story not half bad i liked it but it could had been a bit frighting

um, yeah, right. ok. sure...

sens thers no comments ill say one it goes like this WO WHAT A STORY

Yes, this is a retelling of a true story.

-S.E. Schlosser

Famous characters Ghost Stories Folktales


Schlosser, author of the Spooky Series

About the Author: S.E. Schlosser

S.E. Schlosser is the author of the Spooky Series by Globe Pequot Press, as well as the Ghost Stories deck by Random House.  She has been telling stories since she was a child, when games of "let's pretend" quickly built themselves into full-length tales acted out with friends. A graduate of both Houghton College and the Institute of Children's Literature, Sandy received her MLS from Rutgers University while working as a full-time music teacher and a freelance author. Read more

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