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“Here’s something I don’t say very often.


I’m scared. And I don’t scare easily.”


– J.H. Moncrieff Bran’s castle is said to be haunted.


here. I managed to resist, aside from one souvenir T-shirt. Te most awesome find was a smoky cheese the Roma- nians age inside of Christmas trees. It comes in a little package made from the bark of the tree, and was too deli- cious and unique to pass up. Te bakeries are to die for, and Roma women selling baskets of fresh raspberries from the forest are every- where. Te raspberries are probably haunted. At the very least, they’re cursed.


Bran Castle Bran Castle has it all – a secret passageway, a connec-


tion to Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Tepes (who was im- prisoned there for two months), and a torture chamber – what more could one want? In spite of the many items of cruelty (don’t worry;


they’re all replicas) that are tucked away in a series of small rooms, the castle is a cheery place, with its bright white walls and sunshine pouring through a multitude of windows. I didn’t feel the slightest bit unnerved during our tour. Tere wasn’t even the mildest flutter of a bad vibe.


Until I looked at my pictures. Once we were back on the bus, I quickly scanned


Tales of vampires abound in these parts.


through my photos until some movement caught my eye. Something had jumped between the two photos I’d taken of an old medieval door with a heart-shaped mesh win- dow. Usually when I’ve seen a jumping effect like that, it was because I’d taken multiple photos of an animal or person that moved slightly between the frames. I’d defi- nitely moved slightly in the seconds between taking the two photos, but in that case, the whole door should jump, not just the small mesh window. And it didn’t always jump as I scanned back and forth, only about half the time. It looked like something had passed behind the window. Te pictures unsettled me. After dinner, I took out my


camera, determined to discover what was causing the strange result. Tis time I zoomed in on the window, which made me nearly drop my camera. Tere was a face in the mesh window! And not a friendly face, either. It was still there in the second photo, but had moved slight- ly. Two women from the group were with me and saw it as well. To say we were all unnerved would be an under- statement. Now, there could be a rational explanation for this. I


The courtyard of Bran Castle. 72 • Fall 2015


know humans are conditioned to see faces in everything, for instance. I’m hoping my photographer boyfriend will be able to figure this out. In the meantime, though? I’m spooked.


The Hub


Photo by Monica.


Photo by Tibor Fazakas.


Photo by Yeowatzup.


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