Home is where the heart is ... or the hatred. You can feel the love and care someone puts into their home just by walking into it. Equally...

Feature Fiction || Buried by Sian B. Claven

Home is where the heart is ... or the hatred.
You can feel the love and care someone puts into their home just by walking into it. Equally, you can feel the hatred and malice when you step into a home where dark deeds have been done.

Alex and his team of so-called paranormal investigators are given the opportunity of a lifetime when they are able to film inside one of the most haunted, and cursed, locations in their area.
The Jackson Mansion.

The thing that makes this mansion truly unique is that it is built completely underground. Determined to uncover the dark secrets of the mansion's past, and prove himself a notable investigator, Alex doesn't care what it takes. The mansion, however, has other ideas, as well as some rather restless occupants.

Taken from Chapter Five

Teddy Jackson loved to swim from a young age. His father always said it was because his mother, who was not mentally well, tried to drown him in the bathtub when he was barely a year old in order to ‘break the Jackson curse’. Teddy didn’t care what the reason was, he simply loved the water. He convinced his father to build a huge swimming pool in every corner of the house so that, no matter which way he went in the mansion, he would have somewhere to swim. His birthday parties were the best and his friends loved to come over and swim in one of the many pools. Their parents were loath to let them come to the mansion, but there hadn’t been any nasty rumors circulating about the Jackson family for some time, and people had all but forgotten the cruelty the Jackson family was famous for.On his tenth birthday, Teddy asked his father to allow him to host a sleepover. His father refused at first, but Teddy played the ‘I doesn’t have a mother’ card and his father reluctantly agreed, on condition that when it was time to go sleep they all stayed in Teddy’s room and didn’t wander around the mansion.The day of Teddy’s birthday dawned and it was a beautiful day. Teddy’s had selected a heated indoor pool for his party and by ten in the morning his friends from school started to arrive. They were escorted to where Teddy was by one of the many servants that still served the family after all those years. The party was a huge hit and all twenty children spent the entire day gorging themselves on sweets and cakes and pizza while playing games and hopping in and out of the warm water. At five, Teddy’s father came to escort them to Teddy’s play room for the remainder of the day, where they could play with his various toys, his video games, and enjoy the evening together. Some, whose parents weren’t keen to let them spend the night, had to go home at eight while seven of the boys remained to spend their first, and last, sleepover with Teddy.Teddy’s father made sure the boys were tucked safely in their beds at ten that night before closing the door and locking it for good measure. “Why’s he locking us in?” Brian asked Teddy.“Because he’s worried we won’t sleep, that we’ll go play in the pool.”“What’s wrong with that?” Jerry asked.“Oh, he’s just strict,” Teddy said, “but I have a key.” He had an evil glint in his eye as he went to his sock drawer and retrieved the key to his bedroom door. He crossed the room and unlocked the door, swinging it open.“Let’s go have some fun,” Teddy declared.“Won’t your dad be cross?” Jerry questioned him.“He won’t know,” Teddy confirmed. “We’ll go to the pool on the other side of the house away from his bedroom.”Brian got out of bed. “I’m in,” he said before following Teddy out. The rest of the boys stayed behind.After about half an hour Teddy came back and said he and Brian were having a blast, but he wanted to check if anyone else wanted to come. “We have to go one at a time or we’ll make a noise and my father will hear,” Teddy explained.Jerry got out of bed excitedly. “Me next,” he whispered, and followed Teddy.Over the course of the next two hours Teddy retrieved all the boys until it was only the youngest, Ricky, left. Ricky waited eagerly for Teddy to fetch him and when Teddy arrived, he motioned for Ricky to follow him. They walked through the mansion silently.When they reached the swimming pool, it was dark and Ricky said, “Can we turn the light on?”“No,” Teddy said, “or my dad will know we’re here.”“Where is everyone else?”“In the water.”“Why are they so quiet?”“Because they’re dead.”“What?” Ricky asked before Teddy grabbed him and threw him into the swimming pool, jumping in after him. Teddy swam over to Ricky and grabbed him, holding him under the water with all his strength until the young boy stopped moving altogether. Even then, Teddy didn’t let him go for a long while, ensuring the boy was dead.He then played in the water, swimming around and enjoying himself until the room was suddenly flooded with lights.“Teddy,” his father chided. “What have you done?”“I just wanted to play,” Teddy whined, looking at the various bodies floating in the pool.“How will I explain this to their parents?” his father asked, sighing and running a hand through his hair. “I locked your door; how did you get out?”“I have a key,” Teddy said, staring into the water. “I just wanted to play.”“Well, playtime is over. Come to the edge of the pool.”Teddy swam towards the edge and stayed there, waiting for his father to get his towel. His father didn’t; instead he knelt beside Teddy and grabbed a fistful of his hair and dunked his head into the pool. He held it there until the last air bubbles left his nose and then he let Teddy’s body float away in the water. He stood up and went to the door, switching the light off and leaving the boys in the pool.The next day he sent a servant to find them and the poor traumatized girl came screaming through the mansion about dead boys in the swimming pool. Teddy’s father, Clarence, nearly got away with it as well. At first it was ruled as accidental deaths, unexplainable deaths. Then further testing was conducted and it was found that each boy had been forcibly drowned, Teddy included, and fingers were immediately pointed at Clarence, who was sentenced to death by the electric chair at his trial.


Born in South Africa, in the heart of Johannesburg, Sian Claven grew up with a vivid imagination. When she wasn't immersing herself in books, she was actively creating her owns tories.

At 29 years old, left to her own devices after her sister immigrated, Sian, wrote her first horror book Ensnared and dared to publish it under the guidance of indie authors Toni Cox and Ashleigh Giannaccaro.

Now she has released more than ten books including a thriller and sci-fi fantasy.

In 2019, Sian took up the challenge of publishing 11 books in 11 months.

Sian came second place in the First Annual Indie Awards for Favourite African Author.

Sian's book, Sylvana, the final book in her Butcher series, made the Amazon top 100 best sellers list in several categories across three countries.

In her spare time, Sian is an avid Harry Potter fan, pop collector and Bingo addict. She resides in Johannesburg with her 2 best friends, their daughter, their 6 dogs and 2 cats.

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