Haunted Former Factory

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Copyright Oggbashan October 2020

The author asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work.

This is a work of fiction. The events described here are imaginary; the settings and characters are fictitious and are not intended to represent specific places or living persons.

The ghosts in this story are like Harry Potter’s Theastrals — audible, visible and tangible to those who have lost a loved one.


I wanted a city centre flat. Although I have a reasonable income, it is erratic because I am self-employed. I couldn’t get a large enough mortgage to afford an existing flat. But there was a former garment factory above three shops that had planning permission to convert to residential. It was in a poor state of repair, roughly patched after it had been hit by a bomb in the 1940 blitz.

About three months ago both my parents had died within a week of each other. I had inherited as their only child but I would far rather have had my parents alive. I could afford to buy it outright and my income would mean I could have it repaired and converted. When fixed it would be a large three bedroom flat very close to the city centre, with a back yard and off-street parking for three cars. In that location, parking would be very valuable. I could live and work from there.

But the estate agent insisted that I had to know that the factory building was haunted. I couldn’t abort the purchase if the ghosts were a problem. The haunting would be written into the purchase documentation. I wasn’t really concerned about ghosts. My parents still seemed to be with me, sometimes appearing at the edges of my vision and I heard them in my head.

Apparently the factory had been a sweatshop producing Indian women’s clothing in 1940. At the time there were very few manufacturers of Indian clothing in the UK and it had been operating three shifts for seven days a week. The night that the bomb hit there had been only four women at work. More would have arrived at midnight but at half-past eleven the earlier shift had left and the next shift hadn’t arrived. The four women were working overtime. They had been killed outright by the blast.

The four women were supposed to haunt the building. Unlike many ghosts they weren’t normally seen. All four had been strong-willed women who had run their husbands. They resented any man visiting them at work, even the factory’s owner.

If he, or any man, interrupted their work, they would pounce on him and wrap him up in sarees until he was just a silk-sheathed bundle, gagged into silence and not released until the end of their shift. The owner had taken to avoiding the time that the four women would be their own, only coming when they were with the rest of their colleagues.

As ghosts, if any man was in the former factory during what would have been their overtime, i.e. after nine pm and before midnight he would find that four ghostly women would wrap him in sarees, gag him with multiple scarves, and leave him lying on the floor until after midnight when his bonds would vanish.

I was impatient to move in. My business was running accounting software for a number of small businesses based in the city. Until the builders had finished their basic work, I renting a flat in a suburb twenty miles away, commuting and paying an exorbitant sum for a rabbit hutch of an office in the city. They had to replace the roof, roughly patched in the late 1940s, rewire, and install a new kitchen and bathroom before I could live on site. Once that work was done I could redecorate at a slower pace. There was a lift that wasn’t operational and hadn’t been for decades.

Three months after I had bought the former factory, I had a bed in the only bedroom that had been decorated and I had an office with fast broadband. It was a Wednesday evening. I had given notice on the rentals on my flat and office and although the leases on my former flat and office wouldn’t end until Saturday, I had moved in early. The kitchen, family bathroom and the ensuite in my bedroom were finished. The other two bedrooms had the bare stud work for the ensuites but no fittings yet. The builders had left because the plasterwork was drying. They would return on Monday for a few more days and then I would decorate at my leisure. I had been working since noon when I had finished moving in and now I was just deleting a whole series of spam emails. I hadn’t noticed the time, just after nine o’clock, a couple of hours after I had drunk my last coffee.

Suddenly a long Indian scarf wrapped around my upper body, securing me to my wheeled chair. Almost before that had been tied tight my lower face had been covered in another scarf wound around several times and knotted. A further scarf had fixed my ankles and a fourth scarf was tightening around my waist. A mass of material came over my head. I had just recognised it as a blue cotton saree petticoat when it was knotted around my neck, not tight, but tightly enough that it wouldn’t pass my chin. Another petticoat kağıthane escort came over and was tied around me above my elbows then a third around my waist. If my arms hadn’t been tied with scarves already, the petticoats would have made them immobile.

Slowly many hands wound a saree around my body, pulling each layer before pushing the end into the waistband of a knotted petticoat. That saree was followed by three more until I was helplessly wrapped. I struggled but I was a securely sheathed bundle, unable to extricate myself. The wheeled chair was moved away from my computer and turned around so my back was to it. The overhead light was switched off.

Slowly I became aware of four indistinct shapes standing in front of me. As my eyes adjusted I could see four small women dressed in sarees. Each of them was just over five feet tall and slim. They seemed to be smiling at me as if they were pleased with themselves.

One of them spoke.

“Well, Malcolm, you have interrupted our work. You can stay there until we have finished and think why you bought a haunted building. You are our victim until we decide if and when to release you. Before we go, perhaps we should introduce ourselves since we are now your tenants. I’m Jiya. This…”

One of the four stepped forward.

“..is Sajni. The other two are Aashi and Charvi.”

“We are pleased,” Charvi said, “That you, Malcolm, are such a young man. The only man who spent the night here before you was in his sixties and decided one night of us four was too much, so he left and never came back. We hope you will stay. You might enjoy us. We’ll enjoy you. But, until then, contemplate your predicament. You are wrapped and gagged by ghosts and no one will rescue you…”

They walked out of the room. I tried to struggle free but I was too effectively bound. The ties were soft but there was just too much material wrapped around me. I was aware of an exotic perfume from the scarf just below my nose. In 1940 it must have been very unusual. I seemed to hear the whirr of industrial sewing machines, the machines that were long gone.

After about a quarter of an hour my computer went into sleep mode and the display switched off. The glow from that had been the only light in the room and now I was in darkness. I tried to release myself again but failed. I resigned myself to waiting until they returned. I dozed, too aware that I was helplessly wrapped in sarees.


Much later I was listening in the darkness. I became aware of the soft sound of sandals on a bare floor. Bare floor? Except for the incomplete bedrooms I had carpet everywhere. The sound stopped and then I heard the sandals in the family bathroom and kitchen. I was barely aware of four swathed shapes standing in front of me. My eyes blinked as the light switched on. Unlike before the four women appeared almost solid, with a faint shimmer as if they were holograms, not real people.

“We’re on our tea break during the overtime, Malcolm,” Sajni said. “Now we have a few minutes to play with you.”

“But we are slightly confused.” Aashi said. “We seem to be swapping from 1940 to your present. While we were working we were in this place as it was in 1940. They stayed until we walked out of the workroom, on to very nice carpet.”

“We know that you have a new kitchen and bathroom.” Jiya said. “We’ve had a look. In 1940 there was a single toilet, a washbasin, and the kitchen was a kitchen cupboard with a kettle and a table top electric cooker. Now? It seems so futuristic to us but so spacious, bright and a place we would love to own. But we don’t. You do, and we’re jealous.”

“But now it is time to move you, Malcolm,” Jiya continued.

One of them pushed my head forward so that I was resting on Aashi’s saree swathed breasts. They unfastened the bonds holding me to the back of the chair as Aashi’s arms held me firmly against her. The bonds were tightened again before they freed my waist and ankles.

“Don’t struggle,” Sajni ordered, “or we might drop you.”

The four of them picked me up and carried me into the bedroom before lowering me gently to my king size bed. Jiya straddled me before unwinding the saree around her upper half and tucking it into her waistband. I was facing her breasts straining against the material of her short blouse and a very attractive bare navel was inches away. As I looked around the other three lowered their sarees as well.

“We need to talk, Malcolm.” Jiya said, “and at the moment you can’t. We’re going to remove the gag. It would be no use shouting for help. The shops beneath us are closed and empty now, and you have installed triple glazing to keep traffic noise out. It would also prevent you from being heard outside. So no yelling. OK?”

I nodded my head.

Aashi untied the long scarf around my face and removed it. Charvi brought me a glass of water. I sipped and worked my mouth.

“We are puzzled,” Charvi said. “Until sarıyer escort tonight we have been invisible or barely seen. Now we seem almost solid. Why? We don’t know. But it means that you could experience us almost as living women, and we can use you as a real man — a man we haven’t had since the 1980s and then only for one night before he fled.”

“We want you, Malcolm,” Jiya said. “We would like you as a willing sexual partner, but if not? You’d be our victim. You haven’t got a girlfriend at present, have you?”

I nodded. That was a sore point. Sarah, my last girlfriend had left because I was working too hard and didn’t have enough time for her — or so she thought. She was a nurse working nights. At first it was a practical solution. Together we could share the cost of a flat but we had been drifting apart because we spent very little time together. When she announced that she had taken a job in Nottingham, and left with a suitcase, we were both sad but recognised that the love we used to have had gone.

“So what we want is for you to have four ghostly girlfriends who will make love to you but also look after you. We can cook, and clean, and keep you supplied with coffee…”

“And love you,” Sajni added. “Will you let us try?”

“I don’t see why not,” I said, daringly, “but not when I’m so helplessly bound as I am now.”

“We could let you free, Malcolm, “Sajni said. “But the reality is that we will own and run you. While you are here, you can’t escape from us. We used to run our husbands when we were alive. Now, we have you instead. You might enjoy that.”

So we are going to unwrap and undress you,” Aashi said. “When we have? We want some loving — loving we’ve been missing since 1940. We’ll try to pace ourselves and you. If we have you every night? We can be considerate and take it in turns after tonight. But this night we all need you. Whatever you do will be enough, and far better than decades of nothing.”

The four women gradually removed my bonds. It was great to be able to stretch after so long restrained. They went further until they and I were completely naked.

Charvi’s hand caressed my cheek.

“Malcolm, I think you should shave before we start. OK?”

I was embarrassed to be naked in my ensuite while I shaved, watched by four women who didn’t seem like ghosts anymore. They weren’t quite real, but their hands seemed to be everywhere as I walked back into the bedroom.

Eight hands directed me to the middle of my large bed. Charvi sat at the bed head with her legs spread. The back of my head was against her navel. Jiya and Aashi were pressed against my sides. Sajni crawled up my body until her breasts were dangling in front of my face. Jiya and Aashi pulled me downwards so my head was against Charvi’s cleft as Sajni’s breasts lowered to brush across my face. I tried to kiss them but she lifted them away, giggling. I was amazed that the four ghosts seemed wholly real and the naked bodies around me were warm and sweet smelling.

Suddenly Sajni dropped a breast to squash over my face. Since she was so small, although my mouth and nose were obstructed, her breast didn’t cover everything. I opened my mouth and Sajni’s beast went inside, all of it. She wriggled and groaned as I sucked. Charvi’s legs scissored around my head as Sajni pulled her breast out and slid downwards to engulf my erection. She raised herself to a sitting position before starting to pump up and down on me. As she did, the two women alongside me moved to push their breasts against my face until I was being smothered in soft breasts. With my erection sheathed in one woman, my head smothered by two breasts, and Charvi’s legs squeezing me, despite my best intentions I couldn’t old back. I erupted into Sajni who said, softly, “Yes…”

It didn’t seem long but it must have been an hour before Charvi was also satisfied. Aashi was now against the headboard and I was pulled up so my head was resting between her breasts. Charvi was still on top of me with the other two alongside.

“Malcolm,” Charvi said. “I’m confused. We came here on our tea break which should have lasted ten minutes. Now it’s an hour and a half later and we haven’t returned to work. That work seems a distant memory, as if it was something we used to do, but don’t need to do anymore. Perhaps we are now fully in your time and 1940 is history for us. But what is even odder? I’m hungry. As ghosts we have never been hungry. But now? I’m ravenous. What can we do about that?”

“Hungry ghosts?” I asked. “Is that possible?”

“I don’t know,” Charvi said. “Just as I don’t know how we can seem to be solid — but we are. Solid and hungry. What food have you got, Malcolm?”

“Food? Not much. I was going to shop on Friday evening. Until then I was going to have breakfast, have a takeaway or two, and a sandwich for lunch. But — could one of you go into the kitchen? There is a heap of takeaway leaflets there. I could order a takeaway sefaköy escort for the five of us.”

Aashi went into the kitchen and returned with about ten leaflets. As I expected, they preferred at the Indian takeaway leaflet.

“So much?” Jiya said. “What about rationing?”

“Rationing? That ended before I was born.” I said. “Now you can have anything.”

“Anything? So we could ask for anything listed on this leaflet?” Sajni asked.

“But the prices? They don’t look like pounds shillings and pence, but even the pound numbers seem incredibly expensive.” Jiya said.

“They are pounds and decimal pennies,” I replied, “But just think of them as in a foreign currency you don’t know. Ignore them. I will pay for whatever you want. I suggest a main course, a side dish and a rice dish or naan each.”

It took about a quarter of an hour with much prompting from me, before each had made a selection.

“OK, ladies, I will order for these to be delivered. But when they are, I will have to be dressed and you will have to stay out of sight, just in case the delivery man can see you too.”

I got dressed and ordered the selection. I asked them to be in five separate bags, each labelled with an initial. I had to pay five pence extra for each plastic bag. We went into the barely furnished dining room and got out knives, forks, spoons and wine glasses. I already had a bottle of sauterne in the fridge. I added another one. In the kitchen I had to show them how to use the electric oven to warm the plates. When the meal arrived I was still showing them all the kitchen equipment.


When we were sitting around the dining room table with their plates piled high and a selection of side dishes in the centre it seemed like I had given four children the run of a toy shop. They couldn’t believe the range and quantity of food, far more than a family’s rations for a week in 1940. Each of them had to try everything and frequently they fed me as well. It was a pleasure to see four women enjoying food so much. Both bottles of sauterne were finished.

They were even more surprised that I didn’t have to wash up because everything went in the dishwasher.


The rest of the night I had to satisfy Aashi and Jiya while the other two women surrounded me. I went to sleep, exhausted, happy and aware that I was sharing my bed with four women, all of whom wanted me.

Aashi claimed my morning erection while the other three made breakfast from the limited stocks I had in my kitchen. I agreed that I needed to go shopping but how? I couldn’t take four ghosts with me. I didn’t know whether they would be visible or not. We compromised.

I would take Jiya. She would stand between me and the trolley so that no one could bump into her if she was invisible. If I wanted to discuss with her what I should buy, I would pretend to be talking into my mobile phone.

Jiya was both invisible and inaudible to the other customers. She was astonished at the size of the supermarket, not a large one by current standards, and the range and quantity of items available. I had to pay for a trolley load and take it back to my car before returning for more items.

While Jiya and I were out, I had left the other three with the instruction books for all the kitchen appliances which had never been used since I only took up residence yesterday. When we returned I was surprised to see the washing machine and tumble drier working.

I had to sit at the kitchen table with a coffee as they decided where everything should go. My only input was which items should go in the fridge or freezer. Aashi told me firmly that they would decide where to put things.

“Malcolm,” she said, “This is OUR kitchen. We will use it, not you. We will put things where we want them. You just have to accept that.”

She gave me a hug and a kiss before returning to the unpacking.

The three women who had stayed behind were jealous of Jiya’s trip to the supermarket. I had to promise to take all three there over the next couple of days.

I asked how they had worked out how to use the washing machine and tumble drier. Their explanation included something about who they were. The fathers of all four had been Indian soldiers who had fought on the Western Front. The fathers had decided to stay in England and had obtained British citizenship before arranged marriages with women from India. All four women had been born in England and gone to school until they were fourteen. At fourteen they had started work in the clothing factory because their male relations would not let them work where they might meet men. All four had arranged marriages with men from India who were not as well educated or as skilled in English. All four had been trying to get their men to improve and that had caused friction.

Their incomes, as skilled seamstresses, had been greater and more reliable than their husbands who could only get work as casual labourers because of their inadequate English abilities. That had caused more domestic arguments and in 1938 all four men had joined the British Army, hoping, like their fathers in law, to improve themselves. The men might have joined to get away from their wives’ dominance. But all four had died defending the perimeter at Dunkirk, leaving their wives as childless widows with no status at all in their community.

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