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Four teenagers, in search of lodging for the night, are drawn by screams to 13 Thirteenth Street. As two elderly women come running out, the teenagers rush inside, to find objects, and furniture, being thrown about the house by an unseen force. The group contacts Doctor Terrence Thirteen, a noted parapsychologist, for assistance. No sooner do they hang up the phone then the Phantom Stranger appears. Though the immediate danger has passed, the Phantom Stranger senses a great evil afoot. The skeptical Dr. Thirteen denies the existence of supernatural forces, and relays an anecdote regarding a similar case. He had been called in to investigate the possible presence of a poltergeist, within the home of the Deggs family. The so-called "Ghost Breaker" used various electronic devices to determine that no actual ghost was haunting their home. When a ghastly spectral face appeared in the darkness, then vanished, Dr. Thirteen was quick to shine a flashlight on an ebon garbed figure, receding in the shadows. Unmasked, the man was revealed to be "Creepy" Conway, a failed suitor for the Deggs' daughter. Dr. Thirteen proceeded to reveal all the different ways Conway pulled off the spectral haunting of the Deggs' home. This revelation brought forth a confession from the Deggs' youngest son, who was the true mastermind behind the "haunting". Working with the simple minded Conway, the young Deggs boy effected an elaborate hoax on his family, all in a bid for greater attention. In the end, all the boy garnered was punishment.

The Phantom Stranger counters with his own tale. A young couple were driving through Drood Wood when they were accosted by a headless highwayman. For hundreds of years, the ghastly apparition has haunted Drood Wood, tasking the descendants of Ainsley Drew-Gorham with locating it's head. Drew-Gorham was the Baron of Cheltenham, who beheaded the lowborn suitor of his daughter for daring to love higher than his commoner station. David Drew-Gorham pled for his life to no avail. His family had long sought the ghost's missing head, but had never been able to find it's final resting place. Before the spectral killer could exact his revenge, the Phantom Stranger intervened. Leading the long dead suitor to his own grave, the Phantom Stranger instructed him to discharge his revolver on the bust adorning his tombstone. Within the marble sculpture of his own head, the suitor's true head lay hidden. The headless highwayman went on to his eternal rest, and the curse on the Drew-Gorham family was lifted. At the summation of his tale, the Phantom Stranger calls out to Tala, an old adversary, and demands she reveal herself. Tala steps forward, accompanied by a poltergeist. Rather than take the credit for unleashing the evil spirit herself, Tala reveals that it was conjured up by one of the two elderly homeowners. For petty slights, Abigail used a sorcerer's tome, found among her father's belongings, to cast spells on her sister, Maude.

The Phantom Stranger demands the book be turned over to him. As the book changes hands, Tala orders the poltergeist to attack the Phantom Stranger. Reeling under the surprise attack, it's all the Phantom Stranger can do to hurl the book into the fireplace. As the book is consumed, Tala and the poltergeist fade away. Despite all evidence to the contrary, Dr. Thirteen still refuses to believe that supernatural forces were at play in the house. He accuses the Phantom Stranger of being in on the "performance", and that it's all amounted to a few clever magic tricks. Maude invites the four teenagers, and Dr. Thirteen, to dinner, as well as to stay the night. Upstairs in her bedroom, Abigail reveals that she has made multiple copies of the sorcerer's tome, and that Maude's torments have only just begun.







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