Hannah Fairchild is the main protagonist of the Goosebumps story The Ghost Next Door by R.L. Stine. She is the neighborhood friend of Danny, another protagonist in the book. She has suspicions that he is a ghost, and she is determined to prove it. She also appears as one of the main characters in the Goosebumps film.
Hannah came from a raucous family in Greenwood Falls in California. She had two troublesome brothers and distracted parents. One night Hannah entertained her brothers by getting out a campfire and telling ghost stories. It seemed to work well as her brothers looked scared and she later confessed she got scared too. But later her brothers said they were just pretending to be scared.
That night, Hannah woke up to a horrible dream in which she was surrounded in her room by a burning inferno. She could see the wood peeling away and feel the heat. She knew she was going to die so she screamed but then woke up, to her relief.
Role in the story
Hannah first appears after her dream. She can't forget it and it feels too real. However she is delighted to see all her family seemingly alive and well. Hannah then is distracted by her brothers being jerks, and she heads out for a bike ride.
On her way out, she is nearly hit by a football carried by a boy named Danny. He says he moved in with his family to the house next door and Hannah is puzzled because the house was empty ever since it was sold. Danny acts as if Hannah's house is the empty one, confusing her.
Danny seems to belong to a different time as he knows people Hannah doesn't know yet he claims to go to the same school as her. Hannah becomes suspicious when he isn't there one day then appears the next. When this happens after a few days, she begins to think he is a ghost.
To prove it, she goes up to his house and knocks loudly but even though his mother is in, she doesn't answer.
Danny, when questioned, says his mother is deaf and that's why she couldn't hear. Hannah inevitably feels stupid. But on her way home, she is accosted by a dark shadowy form which floats down the street and taunts her about Danny. Hannah has a panic attack and gets her father to check for intruders, but the figure disappears as soon as he looks at it. Hannah then feels even more stupid.
She has a nightmare in which the shadow figure visits her and drops its dark shroud, revealing Danny's face underneath. Hannah decides the dream made no sense and she will prove that Danny is really a ghost.
Hannah tries to bond with Danny, who it seems, oddly, is the only one who can actually see her, and Danny is revealed to be getting into trouble with the post office master, who is universally hated. Hannah sees that the man is also a psychopath and will kill Danny if he goes there again. So she hangs around to find out.
Hannah finds that Danny knows that there is something wrong with her when his hands go right through her and so she finds out that she might be the ghost after all, specially when Danny flees after a panic attack.
When walking round town Hannah finally finds out the truth - that it was her house that caught fire and that she really died and that it is her, not Danny, who is the ghost next door. Hearing that her and her family died ten years ago, Hannah rushes back home to tell her parents they're ghosts. But to her surprise they've vanished.
Hannah is now despondent and angry at being left alone so she broods darkly but then sees Danny and his friends come up to the post office house and throw oil on it and put it on fire. Hannah is shocked, and again she meets the ghostly figure, who tries to ward her off. But Danny's friends come out and tell her that Danny will die if no one pulls him out. Hannah realizes that, because she is a ghost, its her duty to save him.
The ghostly figure comes up to her and threatens her that he will win, and reveals his face to be that of Danny's - saying he is Danny's ghost, and if Danny dies he will be born on Earth. Hannah saves Danny, the ghostly figure finally vanishes, and Hannah is able to move on to Heaven in peace.
Hannah appears as one of the main characters as Hannah Stine the adoptive daughter of R.L. Stine.
Hannah doesn't appear in the sequel, and it's unknown if she still lives with R.L. Stine (and thus, if she was sucked inside Slappy's magical book alongside Stine).
- Hannah Stine, the protagonist of the Goosebumps film, was named after Hannah Fairchild. Thought it turns out that she is Hannah Fairchild herself.
Books & Television