Ruby, la bambola impossessata

Ho scoperto la storia di Ruby per puro caso, si tratta di una bambola impossessata che appartiene alla stessa famiglia da generazioni. Sembra che in principio sia stata di proprietà di una bambina che morì di malattia tenendola in braccio e che da allora la bambola abbia iniziato a presentare strani comportamenti. Esattamente come Annabelle questa bambola si muove per la stanza apparentemente da sola, produce suoni strani, e in generale terrorizza chiunque abbia la minima fede nel soprannaturale. Ruby, però, ha un altra capacità unica: sembra far star male chiunque si avvicini a lei. Il dubbio che mi viene è che forse la bambina non ha originato la malignità della bambola, ma che sia stato l’esatto contrario e che sia quindi stata la malvagità infusa nella bambola ad uccidere la piccola. Vi propongo il testo originale inglese.


Ruby The Haunted Doll

Ruby has been a part of the Traveling Museum of the Paranormal and the Occult since the very beginning. Long before we’d ever decided to take our supernaturally-influenced objects on the road to haunted locations across the country, Ruby was a much-loved piece of our personal collection of strange artifacts.

Ruby was given to me by my good friend Meghan, who, at the time of our conversation, had the doll hidden away in an old attic, stuffed into a cardboard box with some board games and books. As the saying goes, out of sight, out of mind. Meghan told me that the doll had been a strange point of contention among her family members for decades. This doll, she said, was haunted, but because of its complicated and uncomfortable history, dealing with the haunting wasn’t as simple as calling a priest or burying the object.

Ruby had been a family heirloom for a handful of generations, though as the years wore on, Meghan’s family had become less and less welcoming of having Ruby as a houseguest. One look at her and it’s easy to understand why they might not want her on display in their homes, but her appearance wasn’t the only reason that Ruby had spent the last several decades stored away in boxes, storage units, and musty basements.

According to the family, the well-worn heirloom came with all the usual features of a creepy haunted doll. It moved around the room seemingly of its own accord, produced strange sounds, and generally terrified and disgusted anyone with the slightest belief in the supernatural. Ruby, though, had another unique ability: she seemed to make anyone in her immediate vicinity feel ill. Meghan said that the antique doll had a knack for causing headaches, allergies, exhaustion, and most commonly, overwhelming nausea.

As it turns out, Ruby belonged to a very distant member of Meghan’s family, a very ill little girl who died when she was quite young. In fact, the family maintains that the girl died while holding Ruby in her arms. The uncomfortable and often unspoken feeling that Ruby gave the family was that their long-dead relative is likely still attached to her favorite doll.

What do you do when you believe that a family member, one with whom you have no tangible connections to other than blood, refuses to move on? It’s a complicated situation, for sure. No one wants to believe that they’re discarding the spirit of a relative, and yet, few want to deal with a haunting. Meghan admitted that her family, who were all church-going, born-again Christians, had at one point even gone against their beliefs about “dabbling in the occult” and hired a psychic medium to help the girl pass on. It didn’t work, and so they fell back on passing Ruby around from house to house, a trail of bumps in the night and chronic illness following her.

Knowing that I’d spent the better part of my life investigating paranormal activity, Meghan asked me if I would be interesting in giving Ruby a home where she, and her family, knew she would be safe, respected, and potentially even helped. Of course, I said yes. Ruby the Haunted Doll officially became a member of our strange family that day.

At first, Ruby didn’t do anything out of the ordinary, and we credited her tales of apportation and sickness to a group of people having worked themselves up over an old family legend, a sad situation, and a creepy doll. It’s understandable, and it happens more than you might think.

Eventually, Greg and I founded the Traveling Museum of the Paranormal and the Occult, bringing a rotating collection of our most interesting haunted items to events in some of the world’s most haunted locations, and Ruby’s story was one we felt needed to be told. It seems like all Ruby needed was a crowd to get her to come out of her shell, because that’s when the really strange events started to occur.

Most who come into contact with Ruby walk away having felt no headaches, no nausea, no onset of a chronic illness. Many, though, have a different, more unusual response, one that was hard to ignore. What we began to notice was that close to half of all the people who took the time to actually hold Ruby reported being overwhelmed by familiar, maternal feelings. In fact, most people who held her began to rock her back and forth, treating Ruby as you would a living child, with a number of them actually breaking down into tears due to an overwhelming, sudden affection for her. 

Stranger still, is the fact that museum visitors will be performing these motherly actions without even realizing what they’re doing. I’ve had full conversations with people who have been bouncing Ruby, rocking her, even burping her the entire time. It’s not until I point it out their actions that they even remember they’re holding Ruby. As you can imagine, the shock tends to hit them fairly hard, especially if their initial reaction to Ruby was to recoil in horror from the “creepy doll”. It’s as if she’s sending a message: “I’m not scary.”

For the most part, despite her stained clothing and cracked face, Ruby has never done anything particularly frightening, and that’s the lesson I love to teach to visitors to the Traveling Museum of the Paranormal and the Occult. Not everything that looks creepy is out to terrorize you, possess you, or drag your soul to the depths of hell itself. In fact, it’s very rare that any entities, human or otherwise, are trying to get you to do anything but understand them. All you need to do is overcome your ingrained fears and listen closely for the message these items are trying to send. Deciphering that message is another story entirely.

A few weeks ago, Ruby sent one of her strongest messages yet, and it’s one we’re still attempting to understand.

Ruby’s interactions with the general public have always been contained to emotional events. That is, until the 20th Anniversary Haunted America Conference. After the event, Lisa Taylor-Horton, author and Haunted America Conference organizer, contacted us with a strange report that accompanied a mysterious photograph on her phone, one she swore she didn’t take. That photo was of Ruby.