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My grandfather would always tell us scary stories. He and I went camping alone as the darkness fell and the moon rose. We set up our tents and lit the fire. I sat in front of the fire and he sat at the back of it. Many of his stories featured monsters of terrifying origins and descriptions such as aliens, demons, and vengeful spirits. But the story I remember the most was the story of the lost miner. It went like this.

In the year 1790, in Death Valley in California, 4 miners decided to explore the mysterious caves of the Death Valley desert. The large, rocky mountains seemed to have many caves that were free to explore. Everyone was afraid to mine there as it was unknown and dark in these caves, but the miners were prepared and they had every piece of equipment to mine these caves- ropes, pickaxes, lanterns, food. They started mining for what seemed to be months. Some miners had to quit because of sickness, but no deaths were noticed yet. Only 2 remained.  
Forgotten miner

Four months later the leader of the team found a large diamond deposit. He was about to mine it out, but the large rock blocking it fell onto the leader. He was instantly crushed by the heavy rock. The other miner took the diamonds for himself and escaped the cave safely. The leader was struggling and stayed alive for hours until he finally died.

Some visitors swear that they heard someone mining in the caves of the rocky mountains in the distance, swearing at his last surviving miner and crying. The caves were closed down as unfortunate deaths occurred. Most of them were crushed, but one of the victims seemed to have been stabbed by a pickaxe and was robbed afterwards.

I asked my grandpa to visit these caves someday and he agreed. After our campout we decided to go on the valley by car. Also we grabbed everything that was necessary. As night fell we exited the car and listened and we heard the sound of mining at the farthest cave. We followed the sound. We both were shocked at what we were hearing and we were as quiet as possible.

We entered the dark cave and the mining sounds became louder. I accidentally tripped and the sound ceased. It changed into footsteps and I saw a shadow of a large man wearing a cowboy hat. I thought I was about to die as it approached but the shadow disappeared and we heard him crying.

I stood up slowly and I asked my grandfather if we should leave, but he didn't want to miss the lifetime opportunity to see the legend himself, so we kept walking towards to the crying. The miner stood next to a table with maps of the area and that's when we saw him. His eyes were catlike and his skin was skinny and white as ice. He was holding his pickaxe and he started to run after us screaming slurs. We booked it through the cave and made it out alive.

The vengeful demon arrived at the entrance and the cave collapsed before he could reach the outside. It seemed like he was being crushed as he screamed in pain in an old man's voice. But now that I think about it, it sounded like my grandfather. As I looked behind me there stood the demon smiling at me, getting ready to cut me. I ran away from these caves and never came back.

Luckily I lived nearby the desert. I met my mother and I told her everything. I'm sure that someday she may spread this fact and call it a story, but it was all real. And my mother still believes that Granpa is alive but she didn't live through what happened.

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