As they would set up the game, it would be done in separate rooms. There was one room for the telling of the stories, and at the end of each tale, a member of the group would have to walk into the second room to extinguish one of the lights and glance into the mirror at the center of a table.
They believed that the mirror would allow you glimpses of the spirits who gathered as the stories were told.
It was rare for everyone in the group to finish the game. Most would begin to leave as they neared the last candle because they feared the spirits would be set free when the last light went out.
I can almost see my audience, as I write this. Some of you are shaking your heads and have zero desire to involve yourself in such a game. But others, you have that glint in your eye and you’re already making your guest list and picking a date to give this game a try.
So, here’s where that word of caution I was telling you about.
I played the game with a group of friends a few years after I read of the game. I was still becoming comfortable with my gifts as a medium. I was still getting comfortable in my own skin.
As the night wound down and the room darkened, I could hear their voices just beyond the light of the candles. I could feel the light breeze they kicked up as they moved by. Two of our friends left the room early. They just could not shake the feeling that they were being watched.
I don’t know if it is the game itself or simply the concentration of a group of individuals focusing on the results of the “game”, but it does work.
So, before you decide to give Hyakumonogatari Kaidankai a try, make sure you are prepared. Know that they will come and not all of them may have the best of intentions. And also know that if you play this “game” to its conclusion, you are inviting them in and opening the door.
If you find that you feel haunted as the days go by afterward, do not take it lightly. For seven days, add a cup of salt to your bath and a little bit of lavender oil. Repeat to yourself that they cannot harm you and that they are no longer welcome in your home or with you.