THE TITTY GHOST

Its late evening in the village, the sun is setting in the horizon and two children are gleefully playing around in the deep scrubs of their small fruit estate. As the sun retires for the day, the sound of the Adzan calls the religious for their nightly prayer. Seven year old Johari covers his eyes and starts counting.

“Don’t peek!” Shouts his four year old brother Ali, as he scuffles away through the banana trees to find a place to hide.

As he pushes aside the large leafy branches, he discovers an infallible spot behind a large rock within the dense banana plantation. Johari lifts his hands of his face.

“Alright, I’m coming to get you!” He shouts exuberantly.

He peers around the compound, in front of him is his aged wooden home, and he can see the silhouette of his parents prostrating in prayer. He ponders keenly ; “If I was fat and slow, where would I hide?” He examines their rumpled estate, full of shrubs, bushes, and fruit trees and decides to start near the slope where the mangosteen trees were planted.

Nightfall curtains the village, and Johari tirelessly searches underneath the stilts of the house, between every shrub and bush, and wanders blindly through the deep banana trees to find his brother.

Suddenly, a shriek of anger startles him.

“Johari! Ali! Don’t play around at night! There are spirits around, come back inside now!” Screams their mother worriedly.

The elder brother withdraws dejectedly in failing to find Ali, and shouts out loudly to his brother that he had won. Hearing his brother’s cries of relegation, he grins in triumph and pumps both his hands in the air signalling success. As he stands up, he notices a figure behind the banana tree in front of him.

He is not able to identify what it is, and his imaginations frightens him, influenced by the numerous ghostly tales his grandparents used to tell him. Ali nervously turns around and sprints back through the darkness, forcing aside the banana leaves that brush in his way.

He freezes.

The shock had jolted his senses to pause, the goosebumps and his terrified emotions overcome him as he urinates his torn pants.

In front of him stood a lady. Her black pupils peering deep at him with a wide eerie grin,portraying her exposed, abnormally  large bosoms and withered pale skin. She floats towards the child, and pulls apart her breasts sideways and engulfs him.

Ali was never seen again.

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Many of you in South East Asia may have heard similar variations of the anecdote above. Hantu tetek (crudely translated by myself as the Titty ghost), is a folklore told by parents to scare their children not to play when it gets dark. This supernatural apparition is described to have massive breasts that kidnaps and even kills children by engulfing them between their boobs.

Hantu Tetek seems to be more of a joke when you’re an adult, as being engulfed by massive breasts is seen as a extremely fun experience. But remembering this story as child, you would not dare play around when it gets dark, being fearful of being crushed to death.

(Death by boob? Sounds like an awesome way to die now)


The origins of Hantu Tetek has not been widely discussed, but many often attributed to its existence to be the Balinese witch Rangda:

The origins is based on Mahendratta, an ancient Javanese princess who married the Balinese Prince Udayana. The couple had a son name Erlangga in 1001AD. Mahendratta was exiled in the forest because of her witch craft activities, continuing to haunt Erlangga long after his father’s death. Now taking the identity of Rangda, the witch caused a plague to come down and almost detroy the Erlangga’s kingdom.