I moved down south because houses in NY were impossible to afford. Even apartments cost two-thousand to rent with the most basic necessities. I figured it would be easier to make a living in North Carolina, so I packed my bags and moved away from the town where I’d been born and raised. I didn’t bring any friends or family with me. I traveled on my own and rented a place of my own. I was completely independent for the first time in my life.
I spent most of my weekdays working, but I hadn’t gotten to know my coworkers well yet, so I had nothing exciting to do during the weekends. I mostly rode my bike around to see the sights and fit some form of exercise into my schedule.
About a month after making the move, I stumbled across an old, abandoned drive-in movie theater. It must have been shut down for years, decades even. Weeds were growing through cracks in the cement where cars used to park. The screen had small rips and tears. The poles, which used to hold speakers, were bent and smeared with mud.
I shoved down my kickstand, hopped off my bike, and explored the place. I had always wanted to go to a drive-in theater, but they had pretty much disappeared in the modern age. My grandmother used to tell me about them, though. She said her parents would let her sit on the hood of the car and watch movies. There would even be a playground nearby where she could swing during intermissions.
I walked through the field, staring at the massive screen, thinking of all the families who had been there, most of which were long dead now.
All of a sudden, I heard a noise. A car revving. I whipped around, assuming a cop had pulled onto the property to arrest me for trespassing or a criminal had pulled onto the property to mug me. I didn’t see any flashing lights or trucks, but the engine revved again.
I swiveled my head, searching the area. It took me a moment to realize the sound was coming from the screen.
Beneath the crust of dirt, a film was playing. A man was in the middle of a car chase, revving his engine and swerving highway lanes. A woman was in the passenger seat, pistol in hand. I wasn’t sure if they were meant to be Bonnie and Clyde, but they had that vibe.
I sat through the film for twenty, thirty more minutes. When it ended, I picked up the speaker closest to me. It was smashed like all the others, broken beyond repair. It couldn’t have been producing the sounds I had heard. I searched behind the screen and found the same issue. The wiring was snapped, dead. There was no way the screen could have worked. But it did. I saw it myself.
I told my coworkers about the strange phenomenon the next morning. A few of them called me a liar. A few of them called me crazy. And a few believed me. They said the place closed down after some type of explosion and a bunch of workers died. They said they wouldn’t be surprised if the place was filled with ghosts, wanting to watch one last film.