Sunday, April 29, 2012
Goosebumps Series 2000 #21: The Haunted Car
Mitchell, his little brother Todd and their parents moved to a new rundown house. His dad is constantly working around the house and they don’t have a lot of money. Mitchell hates their car and asks his dad if they can get a new one. His dad refuses, until the brakes go out and they almost die. Mitchell finds an ad in the newspaper with a like-new car that you name your price on and he convinces his dad to go.
The car looks great and when they take it for a test drive, it runs great. His dad claims that they will not buy the car, but the seller offers it to them for $5,000 if they drive it away that day. They take the car home and everyone loves it. Mitchell begs his dad to take him for a ride, but he refuses. That night he sneaks downstairs and climbs inside the car. The doors lock behind him and he can’t get out. He struggles, but can’t find the door locks. Luckily a girl opens the door and lets him out. Her name is Marissa and she just moved into a house down the street.
Mitchell decides not to tell anyone what happened. Some neighborhood boys come over and he shows them the car. They climb inside, the doors lock and the air conditioning comes on. They manage to get out, but he becomes convinced that the car is haunted. Of course, no one believes him, except Todd who believes that their house is haunted.
Todd thinks the ghost is Marissa because she always appears when things go wrong. To prove his brother wrong, he takes him down the street to her house. There they learn that the house is completely empty and no one lives there. He goes to the house of the seller and sees a picture of Marissa with “In Loving Memory” over it and runs home. His parents refuse to listen to his stories about ghosts and ground him because they discovered him sneaking out to the car.
Mitchell has a few more run-ins with the car. He hears a voice say, “I’m evil” coming from the radio and has the doors lock again. His whole family goes to visit their cousin, leaving him home alone. He sneaks out to the car, the doors lock and it takes off. He sees a girl that looks like Marissa sitting in the car and she claims that she wants to kill him.
The car drives all over town before taking him back home. When they get there, he sees his house on fire and almost burnt to the ground. Mitchell tells the ghost that if she had left him home, he would have burned to death in the fire, so she actually saved his life. The ghost starts screaming and disappears. He runs from the car and has a reunion with his family.
Marissa appears and reveals that she had an identical twin sister Becka. Becka stole the car one night, crashed it and died. Her father never got over it and sold the car as soon as he could. He tells her what happened and she says that she followed him to warn him, but is happy that it’s all over.
The next day his dad calls a mechanic because he can’t get the car started. The mechanic takes one look under the hood and thinks they are joking because the car has no battery. Mitchell’s dad scratches his head and wonders how they ever drove it around town without a battery…