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I live only 2 blocks away from a major industrial-type rail line, which is not as bad as it sounds really. At night the trains pass as quietly as trains can and I should be thankful that each one is as polite as possible about it; no horns or excessive speed. The engineers know they're passing through a densely populated section of the city and it simply wouldn't do to be loud. And I've always loved the sound of trains. It's nice to fall asleep to; the long, steady freight trains that stretch out forever into the dark clack by hypnotically. The occasional smaller, faster passenger train with it's swift tacketa-tacketa-tacketa-tacketa providing counterpoint.
But in the early morning, around 3 or 4 usually, once or maybe two times in as many months, the Ghost Train passes through, and I, who have seen and heard many an inexplicable and frightening thing and survived relatively unharmed, awaken and cower in my bed, pulling the covers over me.
The sound of this... thing, is not of this gGoddamn Earth, I swear. It approaches at ridiculous speed, its horn is pitched at some subliminal frequency that makes your blood freeze and your organs contract. This train has black iron wheels embedded with nails used at the Crucifixion, that grind up the rails and leave ten-mile-long hyper-sigils of pure Machine Age evil scratched into the steel. You KNOW just by listening that it's not a diesel, not anything modern at all, that it uses dead housepets, aborted fetuses and failed dreams for fuel. I've never had the courage to look at it, my guts turn to water at the sound of its approach; but I know that if I did venture a peek through the blinds, I would see its X-ray headlights burning through reality itself as it charted its way to Hell. In the dining car, a host of minor dark gods and assorted demons sip barbaric cocktails and pick delicately at the hearts of sinners on a bed of poisoned rice pilaf. The conductor masturbates mindlessly in the caboose surrounded by Victorian porcelain dolls and crates of fresh guns. As you listen to it (because you can't NOT listen to it!) you can discern, to your complete horror, that the train is dragging girders or petrified trees behind it on oiled chains, and that damned souls are strapped to these with barbed wire and good intentions. The metallic screaming verges on the painfully organic and you whimper and mumble incoherently for it to just GO AWAY! GO AWAY, YOU AWFUL CORRUPTED SPIRIT CRUSHING HELL-TRAIN!
And then it's gone. All the terror gets sucked away after it into the night. And I wonder why it comes to this city and why it uses that rail line and if anyone else is awakened into a cold sweat by the sheer bad-fever fright of its passage? Does it come to your town, I wonder?
I know one thing. Don't wanna ride that train. Not ever.
Ah, the ole Ghost Train a' comin outta the black..clickety clack clickety clack. I live three blocks from a rail line and right next door to a Civil War era cemetary. Our train conductors aren't nearly as civil as your engineers, they wail away on the horn, taking sadistic pleasure in waking up the dead I'm sure. Speaking of the dead, the Ghost train has indeed been spotted more than once on that rail. On nights of a sighting, people have on occasion seen in the cemetary shadowy figures in a line as if waiting for something..
As you mentioned, entities were sighted on board that seemed to be, ahem..let's just say, not from these parts. The venemous intent of the macabre passengers was said to be a pounding gut-felt thing- the gibbering madness pulsing from the cars, fading only slowly as it rounded the bend leaving behind a noxious sulfurous tail of smoke. No doubt, headed to a town near you, gentle reader.
-------------------- I AM what Willis was talkin' bout.