A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Kalon Ordona II on Fri Sep 25, 2009 1:28 am

DJ Agenda wrote:
Kalon Ordona II wrote:The Scary Story of Doom: In Which a Terrible Fate is Realized Upon An Unsuspecting Body, Thereby Completing the Cycle of Life and Death and Doom and Darkness
by Kalon Ordona II

So then the ghostly incorporeal manifestation of doom surreptitiously screamed at the haunted tourist.

The end.

I declare the winner to be Kalon! (of the unofficial FOG Humor Contest) Clap

Yaaaaaay, I'm the unofficial winnar!! cheers
Headbang

Ahem!
I would like to thank each and every one of my devoted fans, and also the little people who helped make my magnificent effort so very... magnificent.
I'd name these people in order, except... there are just too many to name--like more than TEN!!--and anyway the prestige has gone to my head such that I doubt people care who the little people are, as long as they get autographs from ME! Coolio

Thank yeeew, thank yeeew! Bow 1
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Dio the Awesome on Fri Sep 25, 2009 2:29 am

I will defiantly make a submission, I slacked off hard last time, and I feel like it was an opportunity wasted. *Begins writing now*
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by mysticaldragonmagic on Fri Sep 25, 2009 3:23 am

I'm still baffled by the fact the title has more words than the body...
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:31 am

Hey guys, let's cut the chatter, okay? We'd like to keep this thread as clean as possible, not only for ease of finding and reading your submissions, but also for the connivence of everyone else that would like to. If you'd like to discuss the contest casually, feel free to in the Chatterbox thread in the General Discussion area. If you have any real questions though, you are welcome to ask them here or to PM me.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Kathryn Lacey on Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:26 am

Okay... so... I'm torn between submitting an entry or not... Regardless, I'm going to work on it until I decide whether or not to join. My main issue is that... on the off chance that I could win, I have no idea what to commission... I would really only want to win for bragging rights and to prove that could possibly win...

Anyway, if I do decide to make a submission, I need to know if it's all right. Basically, my story idea is about a character I have made in the past. However, this character was made for a role play that was the idea of someone else. Basically, this story would solely be about my character in the setting that someone else created.

I just need to know that it's all right to do that before I bother with something that could ultimately be disqualified.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:37 am

It's perfectly fine if you want to submit an entry but don't wish to ask for a drawing if you were to win. It's not required that you make a request, so if you'd prefer not to, that's okay.

I think that your story should be fine, Kathryn. As long as you don't believe that person would be upset for you writing about your character in their setting, then it's really not an issue. Since this kind of relates, I should also state that fan fiction is also allowed (Casper the Ghost, for example).

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Kathryn Lacey on Sun Sep 27, 2009 3:17 am

Yeah. Even though he and I had a falling out a few months ago, I'm sure he wouldn't mind. I mean... it was on S*T like... long before we even did our "And By Night, They Walked" role play, so yeah. I don't even think he role plays any more. Life got too busy for him to do so.

Besides, the details about said world in which I'll base my character were my ideas, and he had them approved. I'll just add a few more of my details. ^^_^^

Actually, I think I will enter if I can finish in time. I was talking to Jonathan, and he gave me an idea for a commission that would be neat, and after thinking more about it, I got my own idea, so if I do win this- which is really up in the air after the proof of the skills of my fellow FoGsters from the first writing contest- I could have a couple different choices. Choices are good. ^^_^^;;

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Sun Sep 27, 2009 11:46 am

Ah, really? Yeah, I'm sure it's really not a big deal at all, and like you said, the role-play would revolve around your character, not one of theirs. If ever anyone wanted to write about someone else's character (for a contest, or even just for a role-play), I think then it's probably more necessarily to contact that person and make sure it's okay.

Oh, neat! ^^ Choices are good. Very Happy

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:51 pm

Just to be a part of the Halloween celebration, I actually -- considering I get the free time -- might just make up a little story of my own. Of course, it obviously would not count and would not be judged. But hey, just because we can't officially participate doesn't mean we can't write on the subject, especially for such a fun and cool holiday! Razz ^.~ Plus, I started writing ideas down for a ghost story a long time ago (it looks like I created the document in May of 2006), so it'd be interesting to pick that up again and run with it for a short little tale just for the fun of it. Like I said though, that's only given I get the time.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Kathryn Lacey on Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:07 pm

I think it would be wonderful if you decided to write a story, too, even if it wouldn't be part of the judging or anything. I think, especially with your background in ghost hunting, that you could come up with something really interesting. ^^_^^

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by The Melancholy Spirit on Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:40 pm

All right... well, I've got this lyrical poem I wrote up a while back... not really sure I want to submit it into any contest or anything (I have paranoia problems putting my work on the internet) but, would something of that sort still be accepted?

If not, I might work on something else... possibly.
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:49 pm

Oh, I'm sorry, Melancholy Spirit, but as our rules state:

Only fictional stories will be accepted. In other words, poems, songs, biographies, or other written works will not be recognized.

It would be interesting to read it though, if you'd want to post it in our writing section. :]

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by The Melancholy Spirit on Tue Sep 29, 2009 12:24 am

Well, I had to ask because a lot of lyrics are fictional stories. Well... ok maybe not the mainstream stuff that most people are akin to but if you listen to the write music or read the write poems you find that they are more notable as substantial fictional stories than many novels out there today. But, 'tis cool, the rules are the rules and I understand. Smile

In terms of the traditional ideal of a story though, what you are apparently looking for... I can't do anything of that sort that short. I've tried, several times in fact. It most likely has to do with the way my mind works because the only way any idea I have can be condensed into something shorter than a novel is that it must be written in lyrical/poetical style.
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Tue Sep 29, 2009 7:34 am

Oh, trust me, I'm definitely not into most mainstream type music out there. xD I haven't listened to the radio in over 2 years now (since we've moved here) hehe. So, I know what you're talking about in some cases of lyrics. But thanks for understanding.

Ah, well, I can understand that. It's good that you actually prefer to write more. That means that it's difficult for you to include less detail and/or less dialogue. Still, if you really wanted to try entering a short story, it could be considered even more of a literary challenge then for you.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by The Melancholy Spirit on Tue Sep 29, 2009 2:02 pm

Finally, someone else who doesn't listen to the radio! ~laughs~ Generally around a good ninety-percent of the lyrics of bands I listen to are story-driven... and pretty much everything in Folk Metal is. Well, aside from Eluveitie because their lyrics are based off historical events for the most part. A few are fictional still, though.

Yes, it could be a literary challenge. One that would probably have me hitting my head in frustration quite a bit. I might give it a shot still, not sure; got an entire month still so... Smile
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Tue Sep 29, 2009 9:19 pm

Lol woot! There are just too many good bands and singers that you can't hear on the radio. That's true -- a lot of songs do have mini stories in them. Haha funnily enough, the genre that comes to mind first in relation to that is country music.

Hehe, oh goodness. Well, I don't want you to hurt yourself in the process. xD Well, if you decide to give it a shot, I look forward to reading your entry. ^_^

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by The Melancholy Spirit on Tue Sep 29, 2009 10:19 pm

I don't really listen to anything that can be heard (ever) on the radio anymore myself. And most of those bands, each song is a single story on its own or a progression of a story for the concept of the album. Or... in the cases of a few acts such as Rhapsody (of Fire) the progression of a story that is on-going throughout every album. Country muisc... Folk Metal... hehe, couldn't be farther apart. Was refering to music from Europe, which their folk is highly different (and much better). :p

Ah, well I do that anyway from time to time so it wouldn't be anything new. Thanks. Smile
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Reffy on Sat Oct 03, 2009 1:16 am

The Underground

On the nine-thousand, one-hundred and twenty-fifth day of your Earthly life, you will be approached by a man. The man is nobody in particular but something about him will worry you. He is old and wears a dark trench coat with an old flat-cap that covers most of his face. His wrinkles will be deeply-set and his body slightly hunched over. He will say nothing too you but will hand you a package. Do not stop the man or ask him any questions. He will not speak. Head directly home and open the package. It will contain instructions that you must follow.

The package is a simple manila envelope. When you open it you will find a page. The page will have instructions written on it. It is heavily stained and smells faintly of paraffin. The writing is old and curly. It will remind you of old Victorian scribbles. Most would find this hard to read, but somehow you breeze through it, partly knowing what it already says. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully. You do not want to make a mistake.

It tells you to gather some red embroidery thread, two dice, two copper coins and a bottle of aged whiskey. The instructions continue directing you to an underground train station at eleven minutes passed one in the morning.

The instructions are very specific. Follow them at all costs.

~~~

At exactly eleven minutes passed one, in the dead silence of the night, you will enter the underground train station. You must count exactly eleven steps from the bottom of the staircase in a South-West direction. Do not fret; this will lead you to a wall.

Once you reach the wall find a place to tie off the red embroidery thread. This is your only hope of finding your way back again. On your journey, leave a trail behind you. Make sure it is tied tightly.

Whisper the following to the wall with a clear mind and an open heart.

“Patefacio ianua ut meus animus”

It is Latin. You speak the words perfectly as though you have spoken Latin your whole life. The translation is “Open the door to my soul.”

A doorway will open. It is only just big enough for you to fit through. It is for you and you alone. Nobody must follow you. It will close the second you are on the other side.

Once you are through the door you will find yourself in a hallway. The light will be a curious dark burgundy with no obvious source. You cannot see the walls, but you will see a path on the floor. Do not look away from the path. There are people lurking who would want to hurt you. People who have walked the same path as you, and failed. You do not want to join them.

Walk the path with a strong mind. The voices will call to you. They will whisper both the good and the bad you have done during your short time on Earth. You will see images of these people as you walk. There, but not there. Wisping away from the path in a swaying motion. They will be disturbed and broken. Their wounds will show clearly. Their pain, you will feel. Their hollow eyes will look past you, as though you do not exist. They do not judge. They just take.

It is not uncommon to be sick or panic. Remember to keep looking forwards.

At the end of the path you will be greeted by the man who handed you the package. He is wearing the same clothes but now you do not see any skin. Do not look too closely. Hand him the two copper coins. This is your payment to the boatman. The man will open another door that leads to the boat. Continue to walk forwards without looking back. Proceed to take your place on the barge.

Once the barge starts to move you will begin to feel despair gnawing at your guts and a slight tingling along your arms and legs. This is your connection to Earth. Take solstice in the fact that you can still feel it connected.

There will be other people on the barge. Do not worry for them. They are already dead. Their bodies will fade and shimmer as they begin to lose their final connection to Earth. Talk to them if you wish. They will only talk of how they died. They know nothing else.

The barge will seem to float on for an eternity. Do not worry.

You will arrive at the shore and be greeted by something you do not recognize. It is neither human nor animal. From its shoulders you will see wings. The wings will be leathery and covered with tiny hooks. The eyes are but tiny slits on bumpy skin. The claws are as sharp as razors and blacker than the darkest night on Earth. You will not be able to tell if it is female or male. It will not speak. It will simply put a claw on your shoulder and push you towards another room. The people you saw on the boat will be going in the other direction. Their journey is not for you, not yet.

Enter the room with confidence and a clear mind. It will be a simple room. A table and two chairs will be set out. They are made of oak. Placed upon the table will be a black cup. The walls are covered in wallpaper with a floral pattern imprinted on it. The color of the print is the same color you first encountered in the hallway. A weird dark burgundy. Somebody will be sat in the other chair. You recognize the other person as yourself. Do not be fooled. That is not you. It is something else. It will speak to you.

“You are here to find the truth?”

Answer only with one word answers. It does not like to be fooled with.

Answer “Yes.”

Load the cup with the two dice you brought. The impostor will pick up the cup, shake it and slam it up-side-down on the table. You will then need to guess the dice. The impostor will bet against what you guess. Make no mistake over what you are gambling for. It is your life, your soul. The reward for winning is great. The consequence of losing is dire.

If you win you will be able to ask any question. If you lose, offer the bottle of aged whiskey as a bribe. The impostor is easily brought out.

On the way back do not hesitate. Follow the red embroidery thread you tied back at the entrance. I do hope you remembered to keep the thread going. This is your life-line now. Nobody will help you.

All of the doors you passed through on the way will open to you.

Do not look back. Do not listen to any of the voices.

~~~

When you return to the train station you will be shocked to find that time has only moved forwards a total of eleven seconds.

Do not speak about the journey. Your impostor will not like this.

You will remember everything.

Pray that you do not need to return soon. The second visit is never with a return-ticket.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Guest on Sat Oct 03, 2009 3:57 am

I finally outlined my story for this contest. Hammered out the setting/characters/plot details. Now I just need time to sit down and write it out. Hopefully in one sitting.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:14 am

I just had time to sit and read Reffy's entry, and now I'm left really wondering what happens! XD Very Happy Great work, hun. Quite spooky!

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Kathryn Lacey on Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:26 am

I would definitely agree!

Mine isn't really... spooky... but it incorporates ghosts! ^^_^^;; I finished mine; I just want Jonathan to give me his critique on it before I post it.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Sunwolf007 on Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:43 am

I am having a few friends look it over for me before I submit it. I still have to do the whole code thing to it as well. Mine is more Action/adventure but Ghosts are integral to the whole story. I haven't forgotten!

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Fate Flyer on Thu Oct 15, 2009 12:06 pm

It's a wonderful idea to have someone else read over your entry before posting it if you can. Smile I really can't wait to read them! My own story (for the fun of it) isn't spooky either. Oh, and no worries -- as long as you turn it in before the 31st, you're fine!

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Reffy on Sun Oct 18, 2009 3:21 pm

Fate Foretold wrote:I just had time to sit and read Reffy's entry, and now I'm left really wondering what happens! XD Very Happy Great work, hun. Quite spooky!

Thankies Very Happy Glad its creeping some people out.
It was great fun to write. Only really took 2 days with it. I decided to go with instinct and simple output, rather than stress about it and over think things. Found out my work is way better than way.
There are some pretty obvious mistakes that I missed (a friend pointed them out after I had posted it - d'oh) but I'm still happy with it.

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Anima 0027

Post by Kathryn Lacey on Mon Oct 19, 2009 2:45 am

"Anima 0027"


-Dr. Sharma-
She was perfect. Test subject Anima 0027 was our first and only success. It had been difficult enough to capture and to contain the spectres for our studies, but to transform their ectoplasm into a sperm cell had seemed impossible. I knew if we did not have success soon, the Justees would cut our funding. However, after what seemed like thousands of attempts, we at last seemed to merge the ecto-sperm with a human egg cell that would mature properly. Many fetuses expired before reaching their full term. Others were terribly disfigured mentally or physically in some way that made them useless to us, so we had to exterminate them. Anima 0027 was beautiful, for she was a success. She appeared to be just like any human child with brown hair and blue eyes. The only inhuman thing about her appearance was that her skin retained a semi-translucent quality that showed the more prominent blue veins branching beneath the flesh.

When she had been “carried” to term, the child was drawn slowly from her dark, gooey pod so we wouldn’t risk shocking her body more than necessary. We wanted to make it all seem as natural a “birth” as possible. We were wary with this one despite all of the signs of health and victory. We didn’t know how well she would fare without the warm embrace of the pod. Smiles passed over all of our faces as she gave her first, lung-clearing howl. It was a wonderful sign.

She fought the nurse with a strength that surprised the woman and delighted me though it made her difficult to contain without another person’s assistance. As if her torture at the sudden environmental change wasn’t enough, we inserted a chip into the back of her neck beneath the skin that would both track and identify her. She screamed so loudly in agony that we all silently thanked our luck for not having been a part of the fools agreed to create the banshee-hybrids.

***


-Anima 0027-
As far as I could remember, I had always been surrounded by solid walls, bright, florescent lights, and humans in lab coats. They always stressed the importance of my lessons, and they made it clear fairly early that I was not one of them. Most of them tried to put themselves above me on the hierarchy of life, and I had never really questioned it. After all, I only knew what they saw fit to teach to me. I only had what they thought to give to me.

When I was small, they treated me like a delicate flower that could wither at any moment. They told me it was because I was the only one of my kind that existed. They told me the others who were like me had never even made it past the gestation period. They were all very kind to me back then. I was actually fooled into believing that some of them cared about me as something more than just their project. I was their child, a part of their family.

It began slowly in the beginning. They tested my mental capacities first. I had a good head for strategy just as they had thought I should. I quickly learned why I had been created. Monsters of all species were wreaking havoc all over the world. Humans alone weren’t able to battle them properly, for many of these creatures could not be stopped by guns and knives and fire. Scientists everywhere were working night and day to create and raise human-monster hybrids that would have all of the benefits of each species and very few of their weaknesses. I was the only one who was part ghost, but there were a lot of others who were part vampire, or kelpie, or were-creature, or gargoyle, or so many of the other things that were roaming the world. We were to become the official monster-hunters to save the humans.

There were three definite factions in the United States about whom I was taught. The Justees were the ones who wanted to see the monsters destroyed to save mankind. They enlisted the aid of scientists to create the hybrid hunters. They were a faction of the government like the FBI or the CIA, but they weren’t as well known despite having a bigger hand in the government’s workings than anyone else.

Next, there were the Corruptees who were the main ones I was to hunt. They were monsters who ran on bloodlust. They killed indiscriminately, even if it meant killing their own kind. They would torture a person just to hear their screams. Of course, they usually stuck with killing humans. They were crazed, demented creatures who had to be annihilated. I had to be extra careful with them because there was a chance they were cunning despite their madness.

Finally, there were the Suits. I was taught to fear the suits, and if it was possible for me to escape instead of fighting them, I should choose that option. They reportedly had inhuman attributes such as incredible strength and speed, but they all seemed to look human. No one knew much about them other than their unearthly talents and the fact they traveled in groups, but it was obvious that they killed hunters like me who were half-breeds. They got their names due to their professional attire. I hoped never to meet even one of those kind in my life, but it was important for me to learn about them, so I could avoid them.

I was lucky that Dr. Sharma had had the strongest hand in my creation. He saw that I learned things that the Justees hadn’t thought to add to my curriculum. He taught me about biology and his own genetic studies. He started simple and built me up to the more complicated understandings. He had several years in which to do it, after all. The Justees didn’t want me until I was eighteen when I would be at a peak of sorts.

I liked Dr. Sharma. Though genetics told me we had obvious differences that made it impossible, I secretly liked to think of him as my father. He did, after all create me, and he took a bigger role in my upbringing than any of the other scientists. I also occasionally caught him looking at me as something more than a lab rat, a look that I pretended meant he thought of me as his daughter though he could never openly admit it.

***


-Dr. Sharma-
She progressed much faster than I could have ever hoped. While we were afraid to physically challenge her too often at her young age, we tested her mental capacity to find that it was far beyond that for which we could have ever hoped. In fact, I believed the Justees would have been upset to learn she was so intelligent. They wanted a mindless attack dog, but I knew she would be a better fighter for her intelligence. Strategy was important, and she learned it so easily. She was very much left brained, but she did have a creativity to her that made her well rounded. It also helped her when we began her physical challenges.

We trained Anima’s physical body to be fit and agile, but there was far more to her than met the eyes. She seemed to have inherited many of the strengths of her ghostly father with only one of his weaknesses- unless one counted the ghastly, translucent pallor to her skin which would be the second weakness. Somehow, in the mixture of genes, she had a superhuman strength- though we found in training it was only a little stronger than a body builder’s strength, and it wasn’t up to par with that of a were-creature’s or a vampire’s.

Aside from this, things were as we expected. She could phase through walls, objects, and even people as if they weren’t there at all. It left the living victims feeling rather chilled and sick-feeling as I- as a scientist- had to learn for myself. She could also, with much practice, cause objects or living creatures to do the same so long as she was in direct contact with them. She complained that enabling living people to phase was the most difficult part of that particular skill. When we learned she could achieve this skill, we had to generate the walls with the same energies we had used to confine our kidnapped phantoms who unwillingly became donors to our cause. We couldn’t have her escaping from us. It was as much for her protection as for protecting our interests. If she escaped, they would hunt her and kill her and ask questions later. My life’s work would be lost with her.

Invisibility was her easiest task, and she was skilled in causing both herself and anything or anyone she touched to disappear. When she was a small child, she would make a game of playing hide-and-seek with her caretakers at the time. Several code-reds were sounded from the fear that she had escaped, so everyone was ordered to equip themselves with special goggles that could detect her body heat, so we could continue to see her with those even when we couldn’t witness her with the naked eye.

Her final ability of which we were aware, for we never guessed she had another, was the ability to see in the dark. In fact, we knew from an early beginning that her night vision was far superior to her day vision. If the lights were too bright, she claimed her eyes and head would hurt, and she wasn’t able to see much more than shapes and blurred details. As it was necessary for us to keep our laboratories brightly lit, we created glasses with special tinted lenses through which she could see without problems.

The best part about helping to raise her was that she had a great desire to tap into her full potential both physically and mentally. Though I knew it would be for nothing, I taught her many things about which none of the scientists who witnessed these lessons told to the Justees. Anima 0027 was their work, too, and they knew the importance of intelligence for one who would constantly be in battle. It was important to know more than just the abilities of her targets. It would help her to understand the components of the ghosts she would battle along with the other monsters of the world.

She was a true prodigy. I had never heard of this much success in so short a time from the scientists who were enlisted to create other breeds of hybrids, but that could have simply been my ego taking hold over such a remarkable victory as this phantom maiden.

***


-Anima 0027-
On my seventeenth birthday, the Justees came to check on my progress. They would stop into the lab every so often over the years, but this time they meant business. In one year, they would take me away from Dr. Sharma and the other scientists so I could fulfill my duty to the government and to mankind. I was already taught to pretend my intellect was less than it was around them, but I inwardly questioned why I had a duty to humans at all. I suppose the fact that I would never have been given life at all had it not been for humans should have been enough, but I really wasn’t looking forward to leaving Dr. Sharma to become a puppet of the Justees. Would I have to feign stupidity for the rest of my life?

I went through a training session while they watched behind a one-way glass. I knew all about that window because Dr. Sharma had shown it to me, and he had shown me how they controlled the obstacles via some controls. When I had successfully completed one of the hardest versions of the course, a door in the wall opened, and I left the room a little sweaty but none worse for the wear. Two of the Justees were waiting with approving smiles. Dr. Sharma stood just behind them, and the look in his eyes was one of unease though it was obvious he was trying his best to keep his features blank. “Zero Zero Two Seven, in exactly two weeks, you will be given a mission in which we will test your capabilities in the field. The scientists will teach you what you need to know about defeating your opponents. I hope you will not disappoint us.”

With that said, they turned and left, and I felt a sickening lurch in my gut. This was going to be the first of many, I knew, before they decided to take me away at eighteen. The time left in the lab, in my home, with my surrogate father was limited. I knew my face clearly showed my sorrow, and Dr. Sharma placed a comforting hand on my shoulder. “Do not be discouraged. When you are eighteen, you will have opportunities to reach your full potential. I am certain they will allow me to check on your progress from time to time.” His soft, sing-song voice was only a small comfort. He had known exactly what negativity plagued my thoughts.

However, he and I both knew that his last statement was a lie. Once they took me away from him, we would never see one another again. It didn’t matter to the Justees that he had created me and raised me. It didn’t matter that he was the reason why I was so well trained. Once he was given his hansom pay for my success, they only wanted him to continue creating more like me.

All of the scientists had been trying for seventeen years to revisit the success they had had with me, but it seemed that I was a fluke, and there were at least fifteen failures of which I was aware- younger siblings I may have had if they had succeeded- but I had a feeling they made sure I had no knowledge of any others after that. If I hadn’t been as intelligent, I would have assumed they had stopped trying, but I knew better.


When the day came, Dr. Sharma brought a manila folder to me in my room. He placed it on the desk and told me to read through the details. My target was just one ghost, a poltergeist of sorts, who had been terrorizing humans for a while, and he had almost caused a couple of deaths. He called himself Charlie. I read through the details of my mission before looking at my geneticist. “It’s not a Corruptee?”

He shook his head. “No. They want to make sure you can handle something like this outside the lab before they give you a more demanding challenge. Let us go to the training room. I have programmed the computer to simulate the area in which you will find this spectre.”


The training wasn’t very difficult. I had been inside simulated cities before this, and I had fought simulated monsters. It was the real thing that was the challenge.

I moved silently and invisibly through real streets. I knew Dr. Sharma and the Justees were keeping track of my location via the implanted chip in my neck. The night was dark and wisps of mist were lying low in my path every few yards. The stars of the night were invisible behind thick clouds and the bright lights of the city. This area wasn’t brightly lit with just a few streetlamps to guide my way. My target was near, and I felt my muscles tighten in suspense. It would be different battling a ghost that wasn’t contained, one that was real and could fight back; one who most definitely would fight back.

I exhaled a breath as I turned a corner into an ally and spotted my target who was about to move inside a building through the wall. I knew to anyone else, neither of could be seen, but part of being a ghost was being able to see other phantoms if I wanted to see them. As I advanced toward him, he turned, his attention suddenly on me. His transparent brows cinched together. “I can see ya sneakin’ there, love. What ah ya?”

I didn’t speak. Engaging targets in conversation would only slow me physically as my brain stopped concentrating solely on my purpose. I pulled a cylindrical piece of equipment from my belt and pressed a button. It elongated into a baton of sorts with each end charged with energy that would harm ghosts. If ghosts could pale, he would have. “‘Ey, I ‘eard o’ those things. Ya keep i’ away fro’ me, ya ’ear?” I moved nearer at a much quicker pace, but he floated away even faster as a swung the baton at him. “Blimey, wot th’ bloody ’ell is this?”

When it became apparent I wasn’t going to stop, his eyes blazed in fury, acquiring an icy blue glow, but I wasn’t frightened. I made contact with what would have been his chest, and he cried in alarm as he fell back. It was then that the real trouble began. I felt something grip my arm, and the next thing I knew I was flying through the air until my back made contact with a brick wall. The air was forced from my lungs, and my baton clattered to the ground. I had been invisible until that point, but visibility took me. It was useless to be invisible if something tangible could see me.

When my eyes could focus, I noticed the ghost had disappeared, and four figures, exact replicas of one another, clad in grey suits stared at me from all sides. I felt something slap around my wrist and heard the click just before I tried to phase through the wall behind me. It didn’t work. I remained solid. Understanding hit me that this new ornament on my wrist had been the reason why I couldn’t phase. My boot raised and gave a hard kick toward the knee of the nearest Suit, but he dodged away with incredible speed. As I gave that kick, I had tried to remove the bracelet, but it was stuck fast. There was no escape for me. They were all around me. My only option was to fight.

I pushed from the wall, flinging myself at the next Suit as my right hand gripped a blade from my belt. I unsheathed it and stabbed it at him. He dodged away, but he underestimated me, and my blade tore through his sleeve and into his flesh. Pain flashed through my thigh as another Suit kicked me, and two more were rushing at me. I dropped to the ground and rolled out of their reach, toward my baton. The fact that the energy contained in that weapon could hurt a ghost meant that it could kill someone alive. I was not mistaken about their intent to kill me, but I wasn’t going to allow it to happen. I gripped the baton and feigned toward one who dodged away only to swing the baton behind me where another Suit was advancing. The tip made contact with his eye, and he dropped to the ground, twitching and smoking from his face, without even a sigh of pain.

It was then that I felt fear move through me. These things wouldn’t even cry in pain. Nothing had that resolve. Even ghosts couldn’t contain a cry when the baton struck. They didn’t fight with any renewed strength or fury that I had just killed one of their comrades. They simply continued to advance, throwing kicks and punches my way. They fought without weapons, but they didn’t need them. Every blow I felt from them was agony. They were vastly stronger than me. I had to force myself to ignore the pain and continue to fight even after I tasted blood in my mouth.

Feigning wasn’t as useful after that first kill. They knew how I moved and how I fought, and they easily adapted. They were terrifyingly efficient. I was almost certain death was in my immediate future, but I wouldn’t be content until I had killed more of them before I perished. I fought harder with a renewed purpose. My knife lashed in front of me, my baton swinging to my left. I felt the satisfying sensation of flesh giving way to my blade, straight into the left of one’s chest. He stumbled into the wall behind him, sliding slowly to the ground where he went limp.

They could be killed like any human or any living creature. Just because they were superhuman didn’t make them invincible. With a growl of rage released into my limbs, I thrust and swung again and again. I usually missed, only to be met with a kick or a punch to the gut or to my face or my legs or arms. Every critical hit forced me to fold over or collapse, but I always forced myself to roll away or to jump back to my feet.

I was getting tired, but the remaining two weren’t even breathing heavily. Envisioning the face of my creator helped me face them again and again. If I was really like a daughter to him, he would want me to survive. It would make him proud. Just as I was pushing myself to my feet after another crippling blow, I felt a boot make contact with my jaw. Blood filled my mouth, and I felt objects rattle over my tongue that had to be a few teeth. I spit my blood and my teeth into one of their faces only to turn again and strike another in the arm with my baton. He staggered back, his arm limp, but he came at me again with the other two on opposite sides of me. I couldn’t phase through them with this damnable bracelet hindering my abilities, and I didn’t have time to try to pry it from myself without losing valuable time to strike a blow or defend against an oncoming one.

They both threw kicks at me from either side, but I managed to dodge and fling my baton at the one to my left just as the one to my right gripped my hair and smashed my head into a wall. The edges of my sight were darkening, but I wasn’t quite unconscious. With one last effort, my blade sliced through the air, but it met with nothing, and I felt my legs giving way as I collapsed to the cold ground and darkness took my mind.

***


-Dr. Sharma-
When they found her, she was unconscious. They brought her back to the lab a bloody mess, and I worked with the doctors to set her on the path to recovery. She had some internal bleeding, but we managed to save her life. It would take months for her to recover and for her fractures to heal. I was furious, but the Justees were only taking notes.

“You knew this was going to happen, didn’t you?” I accused them, the anger in my voice barely contained.

Their only response had been that they needed to test how well she could manage against the Suits if she was going to be a permanent weapon for them. They agreed that she had done remarkably well against four, and they were to give her another mission when she had fully recovered. This time, they told me they would not involve the Suits, but the way they said it made me feel as if they were lying.

I diligently watched over Anima’s recovery, hoping she would awaken from her comatose. She was my success, my life’s work, and the Justees had almost annihilated her. I realized then that what I felt for her was not merely what a scientist should feel over his experiment. She was like the daughter I had never had, and it killed me to think that her death had almost come to pass. Part ghost or not, she was alive and breathing with a beating heart. She was mortal and could die. I did not want this for her. I had to do something.

***


-Anima 0027-
When I had awakened, one month had passed, and while I had been uncomfortable, my surface wounds and bruises had healed and only my bones had been left to recover. The bracelet had still been around my wrist, but it had only been to make sure I wouldn’t lose any tangibility, so the IV’s and machines could continue to keep my very human body alive. After I became conscious, they removed it.

It was only half a year later that I discovered exactly what had happened, and it was Dr. Sharma who told me. The Justees had tipped the Suits about where I would be to judge how well I could defend myself against them. Once I had killed three, the fourth had left. Dr. Sharma had not known, but he knew they would gladly do it again, and he didn’t want anything to happen to me. He was trying to find a way for me to escape, but so far, nothing seemed plausible enough.

Neither of us had known that the room had been bugged due to Dr. Sharma becoming ‘too attached,’ and the next day, they took him away from me. Fury filled me, and I knew I had to escape before they could take me away, too. I was confined to my room since my surrogate father had been taken, but a female nurse came each day to give me food and clothing and clean sheets. I had known her all my life, and I knew that she had a problem with headaches. That was why I thought she would be the perfect person on whom to test the one ability about which no one- not even Sharma- knew. I had developed it over the years.

Her head had begun to hurt today, so I took the opportunity when she turned her back. I slipped neatly inside her body. She didn’t struggle any more because she knew I was stronger even if she had never understood what was really happening. She would only think she had been unconscious for a period of time. I had been careful.

Using her key card, I used her legs to walk out of the room and close it. The walls were charged with an energy I couldn’t overcome by phasing, so they had no reason to fear that I would ever escape. I moved to the main room in which the new head scientist was working, and I used her voice to request the rest of the day from work because ‘my’ head was turning into a migraine. He was nice, and he permitted her to take her leave.

It was so easy until I finally made it through the door of the building. The code red began, and the door locked shut behind me. I couldn’t allow them to discover I had this power, so I leaped out of her body, leaving her collapsed in a heap, and I ran as fast I could. All the while, my hand reached behind my neck, becoming intangible, and I tried to grip my chip through my skin to remove it. It wasn’t working. I felt a shock to my fingers as if the chip knew what I was doing. They had prepared for this. I continued to run, but this time I took back allies and remained invisible. I knew it wouldn’t be long before they caught me if I couldn’t get rid of this chip.

I slipped through a wall into a building, and I quickly found a pair of scissors in a desk. With a deep breath, I plunged it shallowly into the back of my neck. The pain was intense, but it was for a good cause. If I could take a beating from four Suits without giving in to them, I could sustain this agony. I had to dig until I had room the chip loose. Just as I managed to grip it and rip it from my neck with an intense pain, I heard the door break open. With the chip in hand, I phased through the wall, keeping myself invisible as blood leaked down my neck and back, soaking through my shirt. I was back in another ally, and I heard someone shout as they spotted my thermal outline through their goggles, I rushed through another wall into another building, not stopping until I came through the other side where a truck was leaving the wide ally. I threw the chip into the bed of the truck and continued to run in a different direction as the truck turned to drive onto the street.

No one spotted me after that, and I knew they had fallen for the deception. I was free at last. No one could force me to fight for them. I could live a normal life as a normal person as long as I moved to another country. Maybe I would go to Canada.

Dr. Sharma would have been proud of me for escaping, but I knew I would live in regret as long as I was unaware of what happened to him. I knew there was another path for me to take before I could make a new life for myself. I had trained for my entire life for battle, and I knew it would aid me in my new purpose. I had to find my father.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Ab'Sinthe on Thu Oct 22, 2009 7:31 pm

So.. here goes nothing! Or well.. my entry..


Beneath The Howling Stars

Huntress moon, she hung like a freezing beacon of light to the wolves. Harsh winds of ravishing frost whispered the ancient rites of the forest as the pyre burned high in the homes of the village. The town’s common hall was lit up with a wicked shine unlike the other residences. Something brooded within the bowls of the village. An alienated evil had been stirred from its dormant slumber within the last month. A string of tragedies started with the shattering of a heart and the invocation of vengeance. A proud soul of sin had been scorched and scorned by the love for another..

Abby awoke from a restless sleep, his blackening locks barely keeping up with the rushing and sudden movements. He heard cries out of zeal and determination outside as a crowd of men armed with torches and pitchforks passed his frostbitten window. His eyes widened for deep inside he knew what was going to happen. Her scorn had finally made him snap. Thoughts raced inside Abby’s mind, driven by fear and despair. Jumping out of the comfort of his bed and into his robes Abby rushed out of his home. Conquered by a zeal directly opposite to that which had driven those men that passed his window Abby was ready to defend what was worth most to him.. Her.

A frozen path stretched before his feet as the bare skin pounded through the sharpened icy layer that covered the soil. The scent of burning and a lit horizon told him where it was happening and fear grew within his heart that he would be too late. Like in a nightmare Abby ran through the forested outskirts of the village. His heart seemed to be beating its way up his throat, invigorating his blood with adrenaline. After what seemed to be an eternity his speeding was grounded to a halt as he finally reached the lodge where she had lived. Under the cover of darkness and the gloom of the woods he sneaked past the lodge to see what was going on.

Flames licked her flesh as a circle of men armed with torches closed in on her. Her milky white skin bearing an uncanny pale glance through the red blaze of their torches. Abby’s mind crashed through meaningless thoughts and plans which failed before they were executed as he desperately tried to come up with something to prevent her seemingly inevitable fate from happening. Yet before he could do anything he was swept from his feet as a wind more powerful than any he had ever felt blew through his body. Snow slowly started to fall as an icy light started to glow within her eyes and the armed men took a step back, their once impressive beacons of light quickly degrading to a less than satisfying cinder. Like a queen of snow she raised her hand as part of an ancient ritual before bringing it down quickly. Time itself seemed to grind to a gentle halt as an anguishing delay of tragedy ensued. The men froze on their spot, but not from a spell, merely the fear of what was about to happen to them. A moment of petrifying despair and utter terror ensued that lasted too long for comfort. Heart wrenching silence that seemed to last an age gave host to the soft falling of snow. Each flake bearing the tranquil serenity of perfect unity with nature. Abby didn’t recognize the ritual but within his heart he felt confident that it would rescue them from this uneasy standoff.

Hesitant one of the men made a move. Just a small step of seeming insignificance yet with an almost hopeless thought behind it. Nothing happened. No heart chilling freeze came over him nor did he disappear or shatter into frozen fragments of his former self on the spot. A moment of wonder that lasted mere seconds was enough to overcome the fear seething within their hearts and the men lunged forwards once more. She remained perfectly still and even as the first pitchfork made contact with her chest she remained unstirred by the violent death that seemed to be destined for her kind. A slick stream of blood erupting from her mouth as her body made a last attempt to exhale the blood that slowly filled her punctured lungs before she fell down on the frost covered soil behind her. A cheer of victory erupted amongst the men and Abby’s eyes widened in sorrow just before his body told him that if he wanted to flee their judgment he had to do it now. He quickly got to his feet and dashed into the forest.

Staring beyond the trees Abby spotted a deep and uncanny purple light. It seemed to erupt from the heart of the woods. Drawn towards it like he was drawn to her Abby started rushing towards it. His bleeding feet numbing more and more with each step as the frost covered soil ceased to grind his soles with razor-sharp edges. A few more steps and he would see it.. Subconsciously he slowed his pace and with deathly hope and curiosity his eyes leered beyond the last tree that separated him from the source of the light.

In awe laced with fear Abby’s darkest hopes were answered. A mist crept from the darker parts of the woods, a deathly blessing hidden within its coils, beneath the howling stars came forth.. Her ghost in the fog. A gentle caress of pale mist touched his face with a love undying. As he fought the urge to flee from this depraving display of obscurities a thought sparked in Abby’s mind for why should a fate of death stand in between his love for her..

Within seconds of his arrival Abby's vision obscured and he fell to the ground. Visions of maleficent rage where cast upon his mind and it didn't take him long to figure out what caused this lust for destruction. His own desire to avenge his loving heart mingled with her desire to sow the seeds of death amongst those who took her life drove Abby back to his home..

Upon his arrival back in the village he crossed the square where he saw all the ignorant swines were celebrating their victory within the inner sanctum of their vile church. As he stepped on, beaconed towards his lodge by the wrath of love his eyes spied a small dull shine amongst the footsteps embedded in the frost covered soil. Crouching down Abby's eyes fell dead upon the sight of the church's key. It must've slipped from their pocket..? He thought briefly as his eyes lingered upon the unmistakable sight of the key. Without hesitating longer he picked up a quickened pace towards his lodge where he he picked up his lantern.. A last walk through a graveyard by moonlight..

A quick strike of a flint illuminated the already bright night with sinister light. An inquisitive glance given to the shadows cast by his ghastly love. On a path paved with waking dreams and delusions Abby's feet carried him and her towards their final resting place. With each step toward their destination the oil burned with ever more intensity. Instinctively Abby held his lantern high when they arrived and with a quick slide of the silvery key he sealed the fate of those whose bible had judged natural harmony as blasphemy.

With a lengthening howl she flung her ghastly image through the flames and into the chapel setting it ablaze and condemning each and everyone of the murderers inside to a righteous demise at the hands of those they had slaughtered out of fear and misunderstanding. Screams of anguish and agony filled the air as Abby crouched down on the ever frozen soil where she had been burned and he embraced where lovers rot.. Her ghost in the fog.


I think it'll be obvious to some what my source and spark of inspiration was..

I hope you at least enjoyed reading it.. :3


Last edited by Ab'Sinthe on Mon Oct 26, 2009 9:30 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Fixin' typos)
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Guest on Tue Oct 27, 2009 3:26 am

Here is my entry:


The Dance of Death

Little Rock stood before the expanse of towering gula stalks and twisted trees that lay before her. The fog was still swirling between the thick stalks of the gula plant and twisting around the trunks of the slowly decaying trees. The gula plants, she had been told, were slowly draining the fertile resources from what had once been a lush land. The rising sun sent shafts of light through the clouds to pierce the blanket of fog, making the display of light and shadows add further surrealism to the gula field. It was all as Little Rock’s mother had seen in her Dream. That Dream had included Little Rock walking into the gula field, completely alone.

And so she stood there, facing the field as she had been doing the day she had been told, as she had done most days before. Little Rock often stared at the field and thought about what could be done to halt the growth of the gula plants. They were completely surrounded and cut off from the outside world. They could not enter the field; anyone who had done so in the past was never seen again, though often their screams could be heard from their small village. Little Rock took a deep breath, remembering the day before when her father had told her what her mother had Dreamed.

***

“Little Rock,” said Father, as he approached her from behind. Little Rock was squatting on a tall boulder, her normal spot as she surveyed the advance of the gula plants. Little Rock didn’t turn to acknowledge him as he called her name. He knew that she would be listening. “Little Rock,” he repeated, “we must talk. Turn and face me, for this is important.” The request was new, and quite unlike their typical meetings when Little Rock sequestered herself out on the edge of their shrinking home. She obeyed her Father, turning to face him and sitting properly atop the boulder.

“What is it, Father?” she asked, genuinely concerned. Little Rock and her father had a distant and formal relationship, like most warriors had with Dreamers. Father was a warrior, a dying breed of men in these lands, and Mother was a Dreamer, one of a group of seemingly mystical woman who were also failing in the battle for their home. The opposition came from both groups trying to establish dominance in deciding which the right way to proceed was: cross through the
gula field and find new lands, if they survived the crossing, or wait for the Dream to reveal the answer to them. And, at last, a Dream had come to them.

“Your mother has Dreamed, Little Rock. You were in her Dream.” Father paused to let the weight of that sentence sink in. Little Rock knew, as everyone else in their small tribe knew, that someday one of them would be in a Dream, and then their life would never be the same. The responsibility of the survival of the tribe would be upon that person’s shoulders. And that person, it seemed, was Little Rock. “She saw you standing before the
gula, as you do every day. But in this Dream, you entered the field, alone.” Little Rock couldn’t help but gasp, unconsciously moving her hand up to her mouth as was socially expected among the women of the tribe. The hand covered the display of fear, a trait more and more unwelcome in the tribe despite its steady advance upon all of their minds.

No one entered the
gula fields, alone or with a group. That was why the path of the warriors had been rejected for so long. No one had gone into the field and come out again: no one. Their food consisted of small garden vegetables and acorns from the remaining trees. The livestock had been depleted long ago.

“Prepare yourself, Little Rock, as best you can. You must go tomorrow as the sun rises.” Little Rock stared intently at her father, waiting for some other response, one of sorrow or sympathy. Nothing was forthcoming.

“Am I to be sacrificed then, Father, to the spirits within the
gula? More Dreams will come, and more will be ‘destined’ to enter the field. We are sacrifices, Father. The Dreams are the will of those spirits!”

“Do you know why we called you ‘Little Rock’?” Father asked.

Little Rock rolled her eyes. “You’ve already told…

“Because,” Father interrupted her, “you are a small nuisance that constantly tries to trip us up, but when we kick you, we end up with a broken foot. And you do not move.” Little Rock smiled, despite herself. It was indeed a fitting name. “I know,” Father continued, “that you do not wish to follow the path of the Dreamers. This is your chance to do otherwise. Follow the path of the warriors, and carve a road through the
gula for us all.”

“You’ve never relented in this before, Father. Mother put you up to this.”

“Tomorrow morning, Little Rock,” Father said, ignoring her accusation. “That is what she Dreamed.” With that, Father walked away.


***

Little Rock pushed her way through the gula, shoving the plants aside and maneuvering her feet through the tangle of thick brown stalks. The stalks were dry and solid, and a strong man could hardly break one. She tried to keep herself from trembling as she headed deeper through the field. Fear had a solid grip over her, as could only be expected from the stories she had heard about the gula field. She had no idea how far she had to go, or what to do when she got wherever it was she was supposed to go. She only knew that her own mother had Dreamed that she was supposed to enter this place completely alone.

Little Rock made her way toward the only landmark she could make out over the tall stalks that surrounded her: a tall tree that was decaying like all the rest, the leafless branches twisting and drying and turning a deep black. The tree looked like a monster reaching out toward her, its many-fingered arms extending toward her to wrap her in its grasp and squeeze her own spirit out of her. She knew her screams would be heard by Mother and Father and the rest of her tribe, as were the screams of those before her.

With her fears quickly getting the best of her, Little Rock quickly grabbed the weapon Father had given her: a ceremonial knife with a carved bone blade. Her father had said that it would keep the evil spirits at bay, though Little Rock had never actually seen it used. She could only hope that it would work for her now. She held the small weapon out in front of her, mimicking the form she had seen her father and the other warriors use.

With her left hand she tried to push her way through the stalks. The deeper she went into the field, the more abundant the stalks were. She was having trouble making any progress through the field at all. The sun was making steady progress across the sky, passing over her head and beginning its descent in front of her, mocking her own progress with its swift flight. She knew that when the light of the sky was gone, so was her own. She would not survive long out here in the darkness. That thought drove her on, enabling her to keep moving through the stalks when she would otherwise have slowed down or given up. There was no stopping now though, or turning back. The only way was forward, or she would be dead for sure. After all, she thought to herself, Mother Dreamed this, right? I’m out here for a reason. Little Rock just had to assume that the reason wasn’t for her to die.

As the sky slowly grew darker, and the sun began to sink below the level of the towering gula stalks, the stalks themselves began to thin out. Little Rock felt the slimy mush of wet soil beneath her bare feet. While she wasn’t looking forward to getting wet, any change in the scenery after a long day of travel was welcome. The stalks around her began to sway and she could hear the loud whistle of the wind as it blew through them. The wind sounded almost like it was moaning, or perhaps it was the stalks themselves as they bent under the pressure of the heavy wind. And it was, Little Rock soon realized, a heavy wind. Her long hair was blown around her face, though the stalks blocked most of the wind from reaching her.

The dark tree she was heading for was slowly growing larger, its distorted shape becoming more detailed and noticeable. In fact, Little Rock was sure she could see the base of the tree through the gula stalks. Excited and relieved, Little Rock rushed forward even faster, hoping that she just might make it to some sort of shelter before the sun disappeared for the night. Plowing through the stalks at full speed, no longer intent on keeping her knife steadily ahead of her, Little Rock was caught off guard when she stumbled into a clearing. The water level had risen to her ankles, and the splashing covered her bare legs with dirty water and specks of mud. She wiped the dirt and grime from her skirt that had accumulated from brushing against the dusty stalks.

The wind had slowed at last, and her long black hair settled again around her shoulders. But the hair on her arms rose immediately as she noticed the display before her. It seemed as if tufts of mist were swirling around the base of the tree, rising up and falling down, dancing around each other and the tree. The longer she stared the more she noticed and the clearer the details on those swirling mists became. They weren’t mists; they were people. At least, they looked like people.

As Little Rock watched, she began to understand their ‘dance.’ She was in the middle of a battlefield, and these apparitions were killing each other. The ones with weapons were murdering those without them. Women and children sat huddled around the base of the tree, and they were cut down by sword or pierced by spear. Their misty form was shattered, only to reform and have the scenario replayed. Those farther out from the tree were killing each other as well, their weapons seemingly as solid as rock when they connected with each other, and as sharp when one contacted with another’s body. Every scene, of war and murder and death, was replayed over and over again, an eternal dance around this symbolic tree.

One of the apparitions approached her, breaking away from the ongoing display. It walked toward her as if its feet could feel the solid earth, yet it made no ripple in the water. It smiled at Little Rock as if it recognized her. Little Rock involuntarily stepped back until she came up against the solid wall of the gula stalks.

“Be still, child,” the apparition said in a chilly whisper. The sound of its voice was like ice coursing through Little Rock’s veins. Her knees began to wobble and she tightened her grip on the ceremonial knife still held tightly in her hand. She suddenly realized how out of place it felt here, or perhaps more fitting here than she felt comfortable with.

“We have been waiting for you…”

The apparition continued its approach, marching straight up to Little Rock until she could see every detail of the apparition. It was a woman, extremely old and disfigured. The woman’s face was a canvas of wrinkles and scars, framed by knots of stringy hair that barely covered her head. Her clothes were not much different than Little Rocks own, a cloth skirt and top that left her stomach and shoulders bare, though this apparitions clothing was cut and torn and seemed to be hardly held together. Her visible skin was wrinkled and scarred as well, where it wasn’t torn open from grievous wounds. Little Rock raised her small knife in defense. The apparition laughed a sharp cackle that was much stronger than its previous whispers.

“You see your history and your future before you. You see the nature of your soul. You have brought the instrument of that nature with you.”

Little Rock stared at the knife in her hand. She had brought it to defend herself, not with the intent of killing another. But then again, she was more of her father than her mother, and she knew she would not shy away from killing if it was necessary. The instrument of her nature…

“What are you?” Little Rock asked. She was both terrified of these apparitions and perplexed. Whatever happened now, running wasn’t going to solve anything.

“What am I? What are we? We are all what you will be. We are dead, yet here; an empty husk chained to our greed and our fears.”

The apparition stopped a mere pace away from Little Rock. She could see the scene still playing on behind the woman. She could see it through the woman. Little Rock shook herself, thinking of her parents and her own name. She couldn’t budge. Knowing more cryptic answers would follow that line of questioning, Little Rock asked another.

“What are these gula plants? Why are they growing here, and so rapidly?”

“They are monuments and headstones, markers of our passing.”

The woman smiled, as if that answer would have explained it to a small child. “You aren’t answering my questions!” Little Rock yelled.

“You aren’t asking the right questions, child.”

“Then what is the right question?” Little Rock was losing patience, as well as her nerve. The scene surrounding her was very unsettling, and the longer she was here the more it got to her. The woman didn’t answer her; she just continued to stare with that condescending smile. Little Rock took a deep breath. Her anger and impatience was forcing her fear to subside slightly, and was giving her more clarity and focus. This apparition seemed to want to play games. If Little Rock wanted answers, she would have to play along. “Why am I here?”

“To follow in the footsteps of ghosts.”

“Ghosts?” Little Rock asked. “What are ghosts?”

“We are dead, yet here; an empty husk chained to our greed and our fears.”

“So you’ve said. But what does that mean?” The apparition turned back toward the tree, waving for Little Rock to follow her.

“Come with me, child. I will show you.”

Little Rock was suddenly seized with fear. She couldn’t force her legs to move. She didn’t want to go anywhere near that tree, or the dance of death that surrounded it. She shook her head.
“No…I can’t…”

“But you must, child. You must dance.”

“Dance?” Little Rock looked passed-and through-the woman standing before her, at the dance of death that was still performing around the great decaying tree. “I don’t want to…” The apparition turned back toward her, crossing her arms at her chest.

“Put down the knife, Little Rock.”

“You know my name?” Little Rock asked.

“Put down the knife.”

“No…it’s from my father. I may need it.” Little Rock was visibly shaking now, barely able to even grip the knife. The apparition knew her, and it wanted her to follow it into the dance. That thought was more than she could bear. But the apparition, she realized, had used her name for a reason. She couldn’t guess how she knew it, but she knew how to use it. Little Rock… She must be strong. She was here because it was her destiny. She loosened her fingers around the knife. It splashed more water against her legs as it hit the surface. The woman smiled again, and then turned back to the tree and continued walking. Little Rock forced her legs to move and followed.

The apparition pointed at the nearest scene, a group of men clubbing each other until less than half of them were still standing. She walked up to the display, confident that they would ignore her and continue their never-ceasing dance of death. She was surprised when the men burst into life and color, and the scenery surrounding them changed to that of a small village. The buildings were broken, a few outlined with flames and dark smoke. The men were yelling and grunting. Little Rock could hear the sounds of their clubs crushing flesh and bone. She could see the desperation in their eyes, the murderous intent born of fear and the will to survive, or greed and the desire to dominate. Every emotion could be seen in their eyes and their actions. Every emotion except love. And compassion.

The scene faded, and once again she was looking at apparitions, a muted copy of what she had just experienced. The apparition she was following pointed again, this time to a scene closer to the tree. A man stood before his family, a woman and three children, his arms raised to protect them from the advance of large men wearing large and bulky metal clothing. She had never seen anything like it. This time she was more prepared for the explosion of color and life in the scene, though not for what she was about to see.

The men in the metal clothing advanced on the man standing alone before his family. They laughed at his defiance and spit in his face. The man, wearing ragged clothes and passing of many years on his face, stared at them with defiance. The woman huddled on the ground with her children, all of them sobbing. The man in metal clothing, who stood before three others, pulled a long sword from its sheath on his belt. He arced his arm back, and then swung it forward. The man’s head fell to the ground, his body following mere seconds afterward. The woman and children screamed as the head rolled by them. The men in metal clothing laughed again. Their leader handed his sword back to another.
“Take care of the brats,” he said. “I’ll take the bitch.”
The woman’s scream faded as the scene dimmed into fog, a gray and lifeless scene of what had just been so intense. The scream was still ringing in Little Rock’s ears.

“No more!” Little Rock screamed, wiping tears from her eyes. She couldn’t take any more of this. It was senseless violence. But still the woman pointed her toward another scene, at the base of the tree itself. Little Rock walked forward, wishing to avoid it but knowing that it was inevitable now.

The newest scene was confusing to her. There was a man standing over small children, all of which were lying still on the floor. They were surrounded by other people, some yelling and some crying. As the scene was infused with color, she could hear the words they were speaking. She knew she didn’t know the words the man was saying, but she somehow understood them. The man was wearing a large cloth robe, the likes of which she had never seen even among the prosperous tribes. The robe was as black as night, and the man held his arms high in the air.

“They are demons!” the man was saying loudly. “Witches! They must be cleansed!

“They are children!” One of the women from the crowd yelled. “They haven’t done anything!”

“It is God’s will, woman. We must do what must be done.” One of the men stepped forward from the crowd. The man in the robe handed him a small flask. “This is acid. Pour it down your son’s throat and exercise the evil from him. God willing, he will be saved.” The father nodded and took the flask, then knelt down next to his son lying on the ground. The boy at first seemed to be sleeping, but when he saw his father lean over him with the vial, he started thrashing about on the ground, held down by his father and the other man’s firm grip.

“No…no! Father!”

“Hold him down!” yelled the man in the robe.

Little Rock screamed and forced herself to turn away, covering her ears with her hands and closing her eyes. The sounds of the yelling and the screaming faded and Little Rock risked opening her eyes. The woman apparition was staring back at her.

“Do you understand? Learn from us, and bring life back into the world. Learn from us and you will free your soul. Fail and you will join us here.”

Little Rock nodded, a slight understanding of the heartbreaking experience slowly dawning on her.

“But what about the gula plants? How do we stop those from growing over us?”

“Stop feeding them.”

Little Rock thought she might finally understand. The plants were somehow feeding off of their evil and bloodshed, maybe even the very blood they spilled on the ground. It wasn’t the gula plants that were killing the world, it was them. If she learned from what they had shown her here, then she might change things. She wouldn’t bring the world back to the way it was; she would make it better.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Hello Danger on Wed Oct 28, 2009 10:55 pm

Loved to Death


The sun hung high in the midday sky. Family and friends had gathered under a large canopy tent to attend the grave side service for Jonathan Hill’s mother. The pastor conducting the service was reading from John 14:27 “Let not your heart be troubled…” when his words began to trail off, leaving him staring toward the back of the tent.

“Can I help you?” The pastor asked a man; a doctor, standing just at the edge of the tent. The doctor was garbed in his surgical scrubs from head to toe. Those in attendance- including Jon and his father, who set at the front nearest to the open casket- turned down the aisle to look at the sudden arrival.

“I would like to say a few words.” The doctor stated as he made his way down the walkway toward the front of the service. He stopped just at the casket and positioned himself behind it, facing the family- Jon and his dad.

“I’m so sorry… There wasn’t anything more I could do…” The doctor reached into the casket, pulling from it slowly a slimy, bloody, screaming new born baby girl. He held it toward the two.

“I’m sorry!”

Jon shot upright from the couch. His breathing was deep, and beads of sweat dotted his forehead. “Just a dream,” he breathed a sigh of relief. The same dream had been plaguing his sleep ever since the move.

“Change is healthy; it’ll help to start somewhere new, somewhere to make new memories,” His father had told him.

“Help who?” He wished he had asked him then. It was hard enough for a fifteen year old to cope with the loss of his mother seven months ago but to ask him to up and move, leaving behind everything he'd ever known? That was too much.

Jon knew better, though. He knew the move was more for his father- he had been looking for a way out long before his mother’s death. Jon could still hear their late night fighting in his head- his father going on about how this wasn’t the life he wanted and his mother calling him a coward, among other things. Nevertheless, no matter what was said, screamed, or thrown his mom always came into his room after the situation had matured- sometimes her eyes red from crying or her voice hoarse from yelling, but she would assure him the same thing every time: “We’ll always be a family,” and sealed it with a kiss.

Suddenly there was a boom of thunder and a flash of lightening, that sent Jon jumping out of thought. The storm had been raging on all night and showed no sign of letting up. From up stairs, he could make out his baby sister, Melissa, crying- likely brought on by the weather. Jon looked to the clock on the wall. “Nine-seventeen; Dad should be home soon,” he reminded himself thankfully. Like most teens, he despised babysitting.

Jon sprang off the sofa and headed to the stair case near the foyer. He reluctantly began to ascend the stairs, and with every step he took, his sister’s crying became more and more audible over the unwavering storm outside. Just as he reached the second floor, the lights cut off- freezing him where he was- only to flicker back to life a moment later. “That was close.” He told himself as he continued into the hall towards his sister’s room.

Standing at Melissa’s door, her shrieking was even worse: the kind of noise that made your teeth hurt- like nails to a chalkboard or dry sand crunching beneath your bare toes. Jon reached for the knob. “What the…?” He wondered puzzled as to why the door wouldn’t open. He tried the knob the other way then both ways again but with a bit more force- it still didn’t budge. The door was locked. “But how?”

Just when Jon thought the situation couldn’t get any more difficult, the lights cut out once more- this time without powering back on. In the pitch black, things seemed heightened- silence twice as quiet and the slightest of noises amplified. His sister’s crying was no exception, going from ear throbbing to ear piercing. Jon had to get to her for her sake and his sanity’s. “The window!” The thought suddenly crossed his mind. There was a trellis under the window that he could climb. It seemed to be a good enough idea- to a fifteen year old boy at least.

Pushing through the dark, he cautiously made his way back down stairs- away from the maddening, dominating sounds of his sisters crying, back to where the storm’s rage ruled. Jon followed along the wall, across the living room, and into the kitchen where he found his way to the rear door that led to the backyard. He opened it to a strong gust that swept it from his grasp, slamming it against the wall. Wind and rain rushed inside in frenzy, sending Jon in a panic to quickly get the door closed, which he did.

“Maybe I’ll just wait for Dad to get home,” he thought, second-guessing his ingenious plan. As if Melissa had read his mind, her screams seemed to erupt tenfold, batting back his most recent idea. Jon huffed, shaking his head in frustration at what he was about to do. He halfheartedly opened the backdoor once more- this time bracing it to hold the weather at bay, as he stood behind it like a shield peering out into the night. The storm was relentless: wild winds tossing the rain madly in all angles.

Jon frowned before braving into the darkness where he was instantly drenched. Wasting no time, he moved across the porch- his eyes squinting in an attempt to look through the night and rain on his way towards his purpose. He kept running, off the patio, and onto the flooded grass until he stopped under Melissa’s window. The eager teen leapt onto the trellis, scaling it as quickly as possible. Reaching the ledge, he pulled his top half up to look into the glass. There was nothing but blackness and his reflection staring back at him. Just when Jon made an attempt for the window, right before his very eyes, his own reflection seemed to fade into a pale woman’s- his mother’s. He gasped at the sight which startled him backward and sent him falling from the ledge. He hit the wet ground head and back first with a thud.

--


Jon’s eyes blinked open. He was lying on the couch, completely soaked, with a throbbing headache. “How?” He questioned as he sat up, noticing the lights were back on. The teen remembered making a try for the window and slipping off the trellis, but “How did I get back in…?” His sister’s screams interrupted the thought. It had gotten to the point where he wanted to scream back at her, tell her to shut-up. Instead, he took a deep breath before rolling off the couch, and marching towards the stairs with purpose. Jon meant to get in that room if he had to kick down the door to do so.

Just as he reached the foyer the distinct sound of metal crunching sounded outside, stopping him where he was. It abruptly dawned on him his dad wasn’t home yet, and it sent his heart plummeting into his gut, causing a sickening feeling. Jon hurriedly averted his course towards the front door where swung it open. The storm had let up- yet the boy hadn’t noticed, for his eyes were fixed across the street on his father’s car wrapped around the base of a large tree. Jon took off through the doorway, sprinting past the driveway, and across the street.

“DAD!” He screamed as he arrived at the scene. The car had t-boned the tree on the driver’s side. His dad was motionless within the vehicle, and there was a splat of crimson where the tree and driver’s side window had met. “DAD!” Jon screamed once more- his mind now on one track- making sure his father was okay. Tears brought on by fear had already begun to pool up in the corners of his eyes. He frantically scrambled around the car, making his way to the passenger side but suddenly halted. Something had caught his eye.

Looking down at the end of the street- the direction his dad had been coming- there was woman in a hospital gown standing in the rain- an apparition of his mother. Jon couldn’t breathe; he couldn’t speak or move. It felt like an ice cube had melted down the arch of his back and had frozen him in place. The tears; however, continued- now streaming down his cheeks. There was a crack of lightening that lit the sky, and she was gone, leaving Jon powerless to move, sobbing while trying to grasp exactly what he had seen. His mind was a blur of mass confusion: of panic, terror, and uncertainty- it reached out for one thought. “Get help.”

“Get help.” Jon told himself again. The thought forced him to move, making for a mad dash back to the house. He didn’t dare look back at the wreck; he could only attempt to convince himself, “He’s okay… He’s okay… He’s going to be okay.”

The teen nearly ran through the door on his way inside. He went for the kitchen where the portable house phone was mounted. “Nine, one, one.” Jon recited the numbers as he punched them in and brought the receiver to his ear. There was nothing- the lines were down. He was on the verge of tears once more when he noticed the silence. It was a silence he would have welcomed earlier but now dreaded. Jon listened closely- there was only the faint sound of the storm rolling on in the distance outside. His sister’s crying had ceased.

The boy placed the phone back on the base and warily began to walk from the kitchen toward the stairs. Gradually, he made his way up to the second floor, pressing forward through the silence, down the hall, and stopping at Melissa’s door that was now eerily ajar. Jon carefully eased it open, stepping past the threshold and into the room. Bit by bit he closed the distance between him and his sister’s crib until he was standing over it looking into it... Melissa was lying there unmoving, voiceless, lifeless.

“Oh, God.” The words rolled weakly from his trembling lips.

From behind him, a tranquil humming washed over him like a wave - it was a familiar woman’s voice, one he could have never forgotten. The hairs on his neck stiffened, his heart pounded, threatening to punch from his chest, and breathing became difficult, each breath seeming more feeble and unable to appease his lungs.

“Jonny…” The haunting voice whispered, calling to him. It felt like a gentle, chilling breeze.

“Jonny…” It welcomed the teen again, urging him to turn and face her.

Jon gulped and slowly turned to the voice- to his mother sitting in the rocking chair, gently swaying back and forth- Melissa in her arms, and his father standing beside them. His eyes went wide; he was instantly fear stricken, incapable of releasing the scream of horror bottled up in his throat.

“Come see your sister.” The ghost smiled.

Jon remained unable to blink or speak. He had begun to inch toward the door and was soon easing himself out of the room in reverse- his eyes never once leaving the three. Jon backed out of the room, down the hall, and was just about to turn to make it down the stairs when the lights cut out one last time. The power immediately flickered back on only to reveal Jon’s mother within kissing distance of his face. He threw himself back, stumbling before tumbling down the stairs.

The boy lay dead at the bottom of the stair case, his neck broken from the fall.

They were a family again…
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Hello Danger
Poltergeist
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Join date : 2009-07-05
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Sunwolf007 on Thu Oct 29, 2009 6:47 pm

Ok. Here is my long awaited short story. It clocks in at 4963 words and was finally finished being reviewed and edited tonight. I am really excited to here what you guys think about it. If you read it please PM me your thoughts.

Phenomenon of Undeterminable Resolve Extractors (P.U.R.E.)
Case 45031


October 13, 2008
Nate


Nate heard the doorbell he had just pushed echo through the house in front of him. He stood there, cursing his luck for being forced into this case. He was uncomfortable in his black three piece suit but somewhat protected from Boston’s cold October breeze. While he had some spare time, he began using his senses to get a feel for the old house. A few moments later, a balding man who appeared to be forty-something opened the door. He was dressed in worn blue jeans and a shirt with paint stains all over.

“Hello Mr. Douglass. I am Nate from Phenomenon of Undeterminable Resolve Extractors. We spoke over the phone,” Nate said holding out his hand.

“Oh yes. You’re that P.U.R.E. agent sent to help me with my Ghost problem,” replied Mr. Douglass as he gave Nate a firm businesslike handshake. Mr. Douglass was a long time customer. His real-estate business sometimes came across haunted houses that upon being sold could be referred to P.U.R.E. as clients.

“May I come in?”

“I suppose,” Mr. Douglass led him through the house, which was getting a much needed remodeling. They weaved in between paint buckets and wall board to finally end up in a recently completed kitchen. Remodeling usually kicks up an inactive ghost but I am feeling two, Nate thought to himself as he took a seat across from Mr. Douglass at a new elegantly carved Oak table.

“Let’s get right down to the heart of the matter. You said over the phone that your children were seeing people in the house while there was no one else present. You also spoke of misplaced tools and missing paint. Every night that you stayed here you could hear a couple arguing in the master bedroom upstairs late at night. Is that everything?” Nate asked.

“That sounds about right.”

“Well I don’t see what is so threatening about that. I can tell now that I have been in here a few minutes that these two ghosts aren’t any threat to anyone. The activity will die down when you complete your remodeling,” Nate said as he reached for a folder from his briefcase. It’s either a replay of what happened at the time of death or it’s a Ghost that interacts with objects. Here both are intelligent haunts.

“That’s not why I called you Exorcists,” Mr. Douglass’ voice started to sound annoyed.

“I figured as much,” Nate replied as he opened his folder. In it there were multiple pages of text.

“Before I have you sign anything though I think I should get a few facts straight. We aren’t Exorcists. We use Astral Projection to remove our souls from our body and go to where the Ghosts are. We see what we can do to help them. If you think of our reality as being this side of the wall and whatever is in the next reality as being the other side of the wall, then we use Astral Projection to go to the space between the two walls. Like the pocket for insulation in a wall. In this space is where Ghosts remain somehow unable to make a complete journey to the other side.”

“Like Mediums?” Mr. Douglass suggested.

“No... Mediums use their abilities to talk with Ghosts but are unable to do anything but talk to them. Plus with all the publicity most of them are either in it for the money or are faking it. Sometimes both,” Nate explained. “However, that is not what we are here to talk about. How is your Astronomy?”

“Astrology…” Mr. Douglass, obviously mishearing Nate, looked disgusted at the very utterance of the word, “is for people who use the dark arts…”

“Stars Mr. Douglass,” Nate cut him off knowing what was coming next, some sort of religious justification for why it was evil. Such bullshit. “When a star dies out it no longer exists. Yet from Earth we still see the light generated from when it did and this effect could last thousands of years. The same effect happens with Ghosts. The people are long gone but the effect of their souls is still here. Ghosts are confined to a small pocketed area usually the place where they lived or the place where they died.”

“Listen, I know that I must sound like someone who doesn’t understand and I don’t. You don’t have a family and you don’t know what it’s like to be unable to protect your kids from something that could turn out to be a threat. If you want to continue with our business partnership you will get rid of these Ghosts one way or another. My family is moving in next month and I want them gone by then.” Mr. Douglass face betrayed the fact that while he had contempt for the way P.U.R.E. operated, he also knew that they were his best shot at ‘fixing’ his house.

“Ok, I understand what you want. October 17th is the first day we can make it down here. On that day you must make sure that there are no pets or persons in this house,” Nate said as he handed legal papers giving his group permission to perform a one day operation in Mr. Douglass’ house.

“Why? There is still a large amount of work to be done before we move in. I can’t afford to lose a day.”

“When we go over to their side we are granted certain abilities, unique to ourselves that are useful if fighting breaks out. For instance, one of our agents can’t be shot and the other has control of electricity. But the problem is that sometimes Ghosts are granted these abilities as well. It has been recorded that using these abilities can cause fatal damage to a person’s soul. You don’t want an unexplainable death in your new house. Trust me, you don’t know what it’s like in their world. It’s just the same as being in this one but it can affect both worlds, just the same way that they can move around your paint cans and tools.” Nate let his own contempt for Mr. Douglass slip a little.

I can’t stand these typical closed-minded families. They see no need to understand but just want to fix things by destroying what they fear. They have no idea what it is like to be asked to kill someone’s soul. If anyone dies in the Astral realm they don’t exist on either side. Nate retrieved the recently signed legal papers from Mr. Douglass. They shook hands again and Nate soon found himself on the front porch. He pulled his cell phone from his suit pocket to dial Malone’s phone. I can’t ask the idealistic pacifist who is my boss to kill some spirit. Even if it is what the client wants…

“I need you to research a house and be ready for action in 5 days. From what I gathered in preliminary research the time period is the Revolutionary War. Also as of now I am transferring the case to you. I don’t want to deal with Mr. Dumbass anymore.”

October 17, 2008
Malone


Malone sighed as he took his seat at the same table Nate had conversed with Mr. Douglas a few days ago. He was sitting across from his partners around the only really clear spot in the house. The rest of the house reeked of fresh paint and wood finish. He shut his eyes and began to focus.

Blackness. It wasn’t complete but enough for him to concentrate. Malone closed his eyes tighter to get every hint of light out. It didn’t help that his partners were talking.

“So why are we doing this again? Just because we have to teach some kids how to do this doesn’t mean we need a refresher course on some lame case,” Nate complained.

“And you’re how old? Because you sound like you’re five,” Amy responded.

“I’ll give you a hint. I took a little bacon and took a little beans. I fought the bloody British down in New Orleans.”

Some serious training assignment this turned out to be, Malone thought as the rest of his mind continued searching for the pocket between worlds.

“Well there should only be two people to worry about this time. Let’s do our job and get this over with quickly.” Malone finally found what he was searching for. “In three.”

“Two.”

“One.”

Malone opened his eyes and looked around at the house they had just entered. It was furnished with antiques from the time around the Revolutionary War. There were paintings on the walls of the family members who had lived in the house. Anything not painted a dark shade of red was a dark wood. The entryway was brightly lit by a decorative brass chandelier with burning candles that was hung high above in the arched entrance. The entryway ended at a stairway that lead up to the second floor. There was a hallway that lead deeper into the house along with a door to his left that lead to a different room but that wasn’t his concern at the moment.

What he was concerned about was the man standing at the top of the stairs. The man was dressed in a British officer uniform from around the time of the American Revolution. He wasn’t very tall and imposing in his red overcoat with gold buttons. The sword at the man’s waist implied that he was an officer. What made Malone nervous was the fact the Officer had two double barrel flintlock pistols, one for each hand. One of the pistols was pointed at Malone.

“We just want to talk.” Malone raised his hands in a surrender position.

“Should I take him out?” Nate muttered as he stepped forward. At six feet Nate was the tallest of the group. Nate’s light brown eyes were bright with the hope of a fight. He looked about twenty and his brightly colored Hawaiian shirt was the most colorful thing in the room. This made him stand out against the dark red and brown colors of the house.
“No, we are only here to talk. We shouldn’t start any trouble if we don’t have to,” Malone responded loud enough for the officer to hear. He kept his arms raised and in plain sight hoping that Nate wouldn’t try anything.

“Your call,” Nate raised his arms slowly and placed both hands behind his head, palms down on his short brown hair. Malone knew that Nate wasn’t the type of person who gives up and at the first sign of trouble. Nate would fight back with lethal force.

“You see? We don’t want to cause you any harm,” Malone turned his attention back to the Officer. He started to come down the stairs towards them.

“You are here to get rid of us are you not?” the Officer spoke for the first time but his voice didn’t sound like a normal man’s voice. It sounded like he was half crazed and he was restraining himself by mental will alone. He was moving slowly and constantly turning around to see if someone was behind him and then quickly turning his attention back to the strangers in his house. Malone saw the Officer’s eyes look to the left.
Malone turned to his right to get a read off of Amy. She also looked out of place in her light blue tank top and khaki shorts. Her clothing wasn’t the only reason she looked out of place. At five feet six inches with long dark black hair and eyes, she was shorter than the others. The main reason she drew the Officer’s attention was because of her oriental features.

“You are an Indian are you not?” the Officer asked. He probably hadn’t seen anyone from the orient in his lifetime. To him it was really a good guess.

“I am half Japanese and half Chinese,” Amy scuffed, looking like she wanted to add in an insult but refrained. She usually didn’t like people calling her by her ethnic background.

“You people… you are not right. You are Revolutionists! Terrorists! That is what you are! Stay away from her!” The Officer’s eyes widened in fear and paranoia as he squeezed the trigger of the pistol. The roar of the flintlock pistol was deafening in the confines of the entryway. The flintlock pistol looked as if it was pointed right at Malone’s heart but Amy slid in front of him to block the bullet. The bullet created a hole in the floor in front of Amy.

“MOVE!!!” Malone yelled as he dove to his left and out of sight of the Officer. The Officer was somewhat confused as to how he missed as he picked his next target and pulled the hammer back with his thumb. Nate and Amy wasted no time in darting down the hallway, out of sight.

“Keep him busy!” Malone yelled as he picked himself up from the floor.

Nate

“How the hell does he expect me to do that?” Nate complained out loud as he and Amy split up. The officer had made it down the stairs but was slowly walking down the hallway. Nate surveyed his surroundings to see if he could find anything useful. The room he had ran into was the library. In the middle of the room was a table with a candle stick holder which was the only source of light in the windowless room. The same mix of dark red and brown was predominant in this room, like the entryway. Nate had a funny feeling that dark red and brown was the color of all the rooms.

“Yo. Sergeant Psycho. Your library is a little dark. Maybe you should burn some of these crappy books for light!” Nate yelled hoping to draw the attention of the Officer. He heard the footsteps of someone wearing boots as his hearing returned to normal. The steps were spaced out like the Officer had regained control of himself and was thinking with his military training.

Nate grabbed a chair and pressed his back against the wall. He held the chair by the back and hoping to get the Officer by surprise. Nate turned his head so he could make out the shadow cast by the Officer in the hallway. He gripped the chair tighter as the shadow became a black leather boot.

The Officer slid himself in such a way that the pistol wasn’t poking through the door but he could see inside the room, which looked empty. He then sidestepped a few feet further down the hallway to get an angled view into the room. Nate saw the officer’s face light up as he squeezed the trigger. The last thing Nate saw was a blinding light.

Shit!

Amy

Amy had separated from Nate and ended up in the trophy room. The room was filled with the heads of exotic animals that were not native to Massachusetts Bay region. To complement the stuffed animal heads were weapons of all kinds. There was a long bow next to an assortment of rifles, shotguns and pistols, all of which were flintlock. The one window in the room had no light coming through it. It was as if it was a moonless and cloudy night in the country.

I have to do something! I don’t care what Malone says. This stopped being a peaceful mission when Private Trigger Happy opened fire. She frantically looked around for something that she could use. Without any gunpowder or arrows all the weapons were useless. If Malone was here he could tell me all the useless information on the gun that he is using. She looked around for an exit other than the door she came in. Maybe if I could get behind him…

“Yo. Sergeant Psycho. Your library is a little dark. Maybe you should burn some of these crappy books for light!” Her thoughts were interrupted by Nate yelling at the Brit. She found another door to a room deeper into the house. She just reached the door when the Officer’s pistol fired again. That can’t be good…

Malone

Double barrel flintlock pistol again. Probably based off the French design. He has used up two of his four barrels. Good thing that it’s a smoothbore weapon and has horrible accuracy. Pretty rare for this time period. Guy must have been rich. Maybe that’s how he afforded that non-contracted speech.

Malone surveyed his surroundings. He had made his way up to the second floor hoping that the key to this whole mess was there. Moving quietly, he hoped to get the jump on anyone looking for a fight. Looking through the doorway to the master bedroom he found who he was looking for. She was sitting on the bed with her back to him. She was wearing a white dress and had long brown hair. She must be the ‘her’ that Captain Crazy doesn’t want me to talk to. As long as she didn’t turn around he had a chance of sneaking up on her.

Malone quietly took a few steps forward. He didn’t know what he was going to say but he didn’t want to resort to using violence. Just when he made it to the doorway she stood up. Freezing, he hoped that she wouldn’t turn around. Instead of turning around she turned left and walked towards the window. Malone quietly made his feet strike the floorboards at the same time as her feet. She had no idea that he was behind her until he put his hand on her shoulder. Activating his ability, he began to control the electrical impulses flowing through her body. Even though this was not the real world everything was still bound by the rules of the real world. Good, now she can’t hurt me with the power she must have. I just can’t lose direct contact. He caught sight of himself in the mirror to his left and had a thought of how imposing he must be to her. Thinking carefully he chose his next words.

“Do not be afraid, Miss. I mean you no harm.” His short blond hair and blue eyes would be somewhat familiar to her but being an inch shy of six feet in height he was more than a foot taller than her. He was wearing a grey t-shirt and blue jeans, which must have looked like something a bum would have worn.

“Who are you?” She sounded as if she was unafraid of Malone, just surprised at his sudden appearance. She had glanced in the mirror to get a look at him. She must have a power that she is just waiting to use if she needs to. Plus I am sure she has more years of practice than I do with mine.

“Do not move. I do not want to hurt you.” Malone had no malice in his voice.

“I think if you were here with malicious intentions you would not hesitate. Are you not afraid of what my husband will do to you when he finds you?” she asked.

“My friends are keeping him entertained.” Malone heard another roar from a flintlock pistol. He only has only one shot left.

“Why are you here?” Malone had to figure this mess out quickly if he wanted to get to the Officer before Nate got into a killing mood.

“I was sleeping when he came for me. I did not want to wake up but I could not stay asleep.” She spoke as if she herself was confused about what she was saying. She had searched for the right words but didn’t seem to find them.

“What are you talking about?” Malone noticed that she had turned back to the window which showed the view to a wall of blackness darker than the furthest depths of the oceans.

“He was not born here so he can not understand why I did not want to leave. Then it happened. We have been having the same argument every night since then,” she said. She sounded more sure of herself this time.

“You know, don’t you? What’s going on isn’t your fault,” Malone dropped the act of trying to sound from their time period. Sleeping? More like resting in peace. Malone knew that she wasn’t like her husband at all. She actually knew that she was dead and also that her husband couldn’t comprehend that he was dead.

“I told him that I was a Revolutionist. That I loved him and I loved my country. I did not want to see both taken from me.” She looked down at the floor. She was obviously ashamed that she couldn’t work this out with her husband, and now Malone figured out the reason why they were both here. He wanted to finish the argument that night while she was trying to forgive herself for letting it happen. Ghosts always had a reason to stay but once they didn’t, they usually left.

“I am sure he feels the same way about you. Your war is over, so why should your conflict with your husband still continue? Accidents happen and anyone will say anything when they are angry or misunderstood.” Malone released her shoulder knowing that he was in no danger of an attack.

“You are here to help us get to where we are supposed to be? To the other side?” she asked as if she was afraid of the answer Malone would give.

“That is, the idea.” Malone spoke with confidence. Now it’s going to be a lot easier to deal with Captain Crazy.

“It has been a long time since this argument started and you are correct. It is time to end it and to go back where I belong,” she said. Malone watched as her reflection faded from the mirror.

Amy

I have had enough running around. Besides, it’s not like this guy can hit me with that pistol anyway. I am all about helping them along a little but to me it makes no difference if I force them to move on by killing them. It just speeds up the reincarnation process. She rounded yet another corner in the house to get out of the Brit’s line of sight. With the help of her ability he had missed her face by two inches the last time. She was more worried about the sword he was carrying. If she could get that away from him she would have a chance. Positioning herself behind a wooden door she hoped to get the Brit by surprise. He had been slow in chasing after her because he methodically checked every doorway and every room to make sure no one would get the drop on him. She hoped that by this time he was getting impatient and nervous. Then he would make a mistake. That would be her moment to disarm him.

She didn’t hear the Brit’s footsteps, which worried her a little. She hoped he was still following her and not decided to go in a different direction. Looking around she found herself in what looked to be the dinning hall. It was a bad place to be because of the multiple doors to the room. She was hoping that he would think she wouldn’t try to set up an ambush in a room that had so many doors.

The cold barrel of the pistol was shoved against the back of her head. She had never been shot point blank before so she had no way of knowing if her ability worked at that distance. Damnit! She would have preferred to not find out this way.

“Let us see if your witchcraft works at this distance Indian.” The Brit had much malice in his voice. He sounded as if he would enjoy watching her skull splatter all over the wall.

“I told you what I am already! I am Japanese and Chinese.” She was angry at herself for getting caught.

“We all bleed the same,” the British officer said as she heard the blade being drawn out slowly from the steel on steel noise that was being produced. It’s his off hand, otherwise he would have drawn it by now. She repositioned her feet as she prepared a last ditch effort to disarm him before the sword was fully unsheathed. She began to move her move arm as she turned. She was hit by the man’s weight as he collapsed upon her bringing both of them to the floor.

SHIT!!! She flailed and frantically tried to save her life. She jumped to her feet with her fists up ready to fight. She saw his body twitching on the floor face down. There were two arrows sticking out of his back, one above the shoulder embedded in the spinal column, the other pierced either his lungs or his heart. If the Brit wasn’t dead now he would be in a few minutes.

“Surprise asshole! You’re dead. Again.” Nate was standing in a room behind the Officer’s body with the door propped open with his foot. In his hands was a long bow and on the table next to him was a quiver of arrows. It was at this moment that the walls started vibrating but made no sound. Then it looked like a large amount of heat was being produced by everything in the house. The walls started to evaporate leaving nothing but open space. Every object in the house started dissolving as the Astral Energy that had been keeping this realm alive dissipated.

“We should be going,” Nate said as the bow dissolved from his hands. Amy only nodded in agreement, in a flash both of their bodies disappeared. When she opened her eyes again they were back where they started their Astral projection, in an old house being remodeled. The three of them had formed a small circle and sat down at the new kitchen table. She knew Malone wouldn’t be happy with what Nate did to the Brit.

“You killed him didn’t you?” Malone yelled. “I had it! I had it all figured out and she left of her own free will. It would have been easy to convince him to pass on as well.”

“Don’t tell me you have a problem with defending myself and others. I had to teleport to not get fatally shot. Your new teaching style is the worst idea you have had in a while. ‘Let’s try to not use our abilities because we will be training people soon so we need to remember what it was like back when we started.’ He had a point blank shot at Amy and I for one wasn’t about to watch her brain become the new color of his walls. Also, it’s not about what you want it’s about what the client wants. If you have a problem with that then you can just kiss my ass!” Nate yelled in response.

“Just because you don’t believe in an afterlife doesn’t mean there isn’t one!” Malone yelled at Nate. She noticed both of the ‘men’ had their hands clenched into fists. This was, unfortunately, a usual occurrence. Maybe I should let them fight this time. Then again I drove here and I don’t want blood all over my car. She reached down into her pocket and pulled out her keys. She dangled her keys out in front of her making the metal on metal noise.

“Excuse me boys. If you want to walk the 100 or so miles back home, beat the living hell out of each other. If you want a ride home I suggest you stow it and shut up. It’s a long drive and I don’t want to hear it.” Amy turned and walked to the front door. She heard both of them walking behind her after a second.

They drove in silence for the first few minutes. It was rather uncomfortable with the silence looming over them until it finally became too great for Amy to take anymore.

“So, Malone, you met up with the other ghost right? What happened?” Amy asked as she set the cruse control. Colorfully decorated trees flew by as they reached the highway cruising speed and left the city behind them.

“My best guess?”

“Sure.”

“Sometime during the war, Captain Crazy discovered his wife helping people commit treason against the British Government. He, being an Officer, knew the punishment was death and carried out the sentence that night. Years latter he fell deeply into remorse and eventually lost his mind, unable to cope with the actions he chose. Eventually, he died and pulled her resting soul back to try and reconcile their differences. This didn’t work so they had the same argument every night until we came along.” Malone surmised the events in the way he figured it happened and silence once again fell up on the car.

“So… where is she now?” Amy asked.

“Nate, the Atheist would say in nonexistence. Amy, the Taoist, would say on her way to becoming reincarnated. Malone, the Christian, would say in Heaven,” Nate replied, “So that means…”

“Now, the way I see it the only thing we have in common is the right here and now so let’s enjoy our ride back, ok?” Amy cut off Nate’s rant before it started.

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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

Post by Ragter the junior greeter on Fri Oct 30, 2009 7:43 pm

Sorry that I'm so late with this..oh, and it's been a while since I actually wrote a story, so this probably isn't my absolute best.

The Subtle Ripples

"I am going to miss this place.." A person remarked to himself in an almost empty room, the only things left in it now were the cardboard boxes, if one only counted the objects on the floor. If one counted the objects on the walls and ceiling as well, then, there were numerous stains on the walls, which this person couldn't get rid of at all, despite everything he tried. Now, there was nothing on the ceiling except for a fan, which also doubled as a lamp, as most ceiling based fans did now. "Ah well, I suppose I will just have to deal with it..." He mused to himself with a shrug, walking over to the box and picking it up. "Hey, Elijah, hurry it up!" Someone cried from outside, though he could barely hear them, considering all the windows were closed right now.

With a shake of his head, the man now known as Elijah headed out of the room and down to the entrance/exit to the house. "So..good-bye" He stated simply, out loud, before going on ahead outside. Once there, the person who had seemingly shouted his name out before approached him. "I guess this is it. Hope you have luck with the new house" The man stated to him, patting him on the shoulder before starting to depart. "Thanks, Matthew, and I really appreciate you helping me" Elijah replied to the retreating Matthew, whom merely put his hand up in a thanking manner.

He stood there for just a few moments, watching the retreating figure of his friend, before figuring he should ship this box to his other belongings awaiting at his new home. For the most part, this event passed by without anything noticeable occurring and soon, Elijah was on his way to the new home he now had. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately for him, he doubted that his old car could make the trek across half the United States, so he had little other choice but to sell it, deciding he might just have enough money to get a new one when he got at his new house. That was always how he lived his life, going with just..feelings, he got at times, or instinct, rather, that was what it was called. Elijah was thinking about his instinct as he made his way to where the Greyhound would pick him up, and was still thinking about these as he got on the Greyhound. Even when he fell asleep on the Greyhound, that didn't stop him from thinking, or rather, remembering, more.

Elijah found himself coming home from yet another day of work as he thought over his life so far. He was..successful at what he did, that should satisfy him enough, but he was human, and therefore, did want more. For instance, he always regretted never actually going after 'The One' as people would say. Soon after High School, she had moved away somewhere, he didn't know where, and he couldn't find himself able to move out of the small, comfy town he lived in. Still, he met another person, definitely not 'The One' but she was...nice enough, to put it in simple terms. He couldn't describe her beyond anything other then the next best thing to 'The One'.

Now..he had been living along for about a year, his wife having died just a year ago. The grief had been..almost unbearable, but he found solace in his workplace, as well as his friends. He knew that some pitied him for the fact that she died, and oddly enough, he didn't like being pitied. He couldn't stand the fact that she was dead either..he had gotten used to her, even found himself liking her, yet all that..familiarity was gone now. He felt he needed something different and that was when the idea of moving somewhere had struck him. Of course, the fact that he was hearing tapping noises throughout the house didn't help, though he just attributed that to his stress and imagination.

Elijah found his eyes opening soon after that and shook his head as he glanced around. As far as he could tell, it was night time, and the occasional street light helped to verify his line of thinking. He then found himself asking how long he had been asleep, and if he was close to his new home yet. He had been told that he would arrive at his home sometime in the morning, 8, 9, or 10..somewhere around there. The fact that it was still so dark seemed to tell him that he wasn't there yet, but he was getting closer. Sighing to himself just a little, he decided to occupy himself by just looking out the window, watching as the numerous sights went by. He wasn't able to keep himself awake, even though he just woke up, and closed his eyes once more.

By the time he had woken up again, he had woken up, and need no verification this time, due to the fact that the brightness of the sun had probably woken him up. With a shake of his head, he glanced around at the other passengers he could see, and saw that some of them were sleeping. With a small sigh, he glanced out his window and just sat there, watching the scenery for quite a while, and the people that were now waking up were lost from his attention..it was just so easy to lose your attention when you were distracted by what life threw at you sometimes. After what had seemed like hours to him, Elijah had finally reached his destination and stepped off of the bus as it stopped, glanced around again, then started to walk towards the address of his new home.

Thankfully, it was not that far from the bus stop and within moments, he was there. His car would be here sometime today, later...and all of his stuff was already packed up in there, in quite a couple of boxes. He messed around with his keys a bit as he walked up to the door and finally found the right one. That was another thing..he was going to have to figure out which key was the actual one to the house, it could be any of the ones on his keychain, after all. After yet some more time, Elijah found the key, and inserted it right into the keyhole. After quite a bit of jiggling it around, the door unlocked and he stepped into the building. It was...exactly the same as when he had first been shown it, save for the fact that there were boxes everywhere. It's going to be so much work to put all of this into place.. He thought to himself, reminding himself that the actual heavy furniture, like his couch, chair, etc. were going to be coming later today as well. I should have thought this through..where am I going to sleep? He asked himself as the door shut, and wondered if he had shut it. He didn't remember pushing it shut..but then again, he was pretty distracted right now.

He was finding himself so forgetful now..he was going to have to start looking for jobs by tomorrow, at the very least..for today, he could meet the people in the town, then go back to his house and start unpacking his things. So, he decided to do just that, exiting his house almost as soon as he entered it, not noticing the small tapping noises coming from above his house as he closed the door and locked it.

So, with that, he headed off, going towards the houses on the end of the street first, planning to introduce himself to the ones closest to his house first. For the most part, none were interesting in the slightest, and gave the generic greetings one got when you said you were the new person in town. After what had seemed like hours to Elijah, he finally reached the last house and rang the doorbell. A man answered and, like what seemed like dozens of times before, Elijah said that he was the new guy in town. The two chatted for quite a while until the man said something that made Elijah curious. "You know why the old owners left that house?" The man had asked and, growing curious, Elijah shook his head no. "Well, I'm not positive, but I hear that it's because ghosts are in the place. Ha, can you imagine that? Like anyone believes in ghosts" The man had stated, giving out a small chuckle. "Ha..yeah, no one believes in ghosts" Elijah agreed with a weak chuckle, before bidding the man farewell and going back to his own house.

He didn't think much about what the man had said as he entered back into his house and noticed that the boxes had moved a little since he had left. He didn't quite know what to make of it and so, he decided not to question himself about it as he started to unpack it all. After unpacking all of the boxes, he then got to work, putting everything where it was going to be and, if it was going to be on stands or dressers, he just put it in the spot that the dresser/stand was going to be. He spent most of his day doing this and by the time that he was finally done, it was growing dark out. With a slight sigh, Elijah decided he had little other choice then to take out a pillow and blanket. He would then lay the blanket on the ground, put a pillow up near the top of it, and then lay down on the blanket, with his head on the pillow. Well..next time you move, Elijah, you better remember to move when the furniture gets here, not before it gets here.. He told himself with a shake of his head. As he shook his head, he noticed something...odd near the doorway to the bathroom. It looked see through and had a vague, human form, but he had caught a glimpse only. Puzzled, he decided to get up and head over to the bathroom, but when he looked in, nothing was there. Still puzzled, and troubled, he went back to lay down. He did so and decided to think about it in the morning. As he thought that, he felt himself growing tired and closed his eyes, falling asleep surprisingly fast.

He awoke the next morning to the sound of a..truck? Yes, he certainly thought that was the sound of a truck coming from outside. So, with a yawn to himself, he got up and glanced out the window. As he had thought, it was indeed a truck, or 2, rather, with his furniture inside of them, probably. He proceeded to get ready for the day, which took a few minutes, until he stepped outside and headed towards the truck. Needless to say, moving all of his stuff inside went smoothly without any noticeable events happening at all and, within an hour or so, the 2 trucks had left. He then proceeded to go back inside and start moving all of his stuff onto the stands and dresser that were now inside of his house. This didn't take that long and, almost right after he was gone, he heard a few knocking noises coming from up above. Now, he was told that there was no attic, but..if that was so, where were the knocking noises coming from? They continued for a while and, getting fed up, he started walking around the house, keeping a close eye on the ceiling everywhere he went, until he spotted a part of the ceiling that looked like it could be moved.

Puzzled, he glanced around for a moment before shrugging and poking at the ceiling piece. Nothing happened, obviously, but it did move a little and, growing more curious, Elijah went off to find some sort of chair. A few minutes later after little trouble, he came back to where the ceiling piece was and put the chair down, then stood on the chair. Once he had done this, he went ahead and moved the ceiling piece over, glancing up into the darkness as he did this. After the piece had been moved, he paused for a minute, wondering what in the world he was doing, before disregarding that thought and heading up anyways. It was quite dusty and..well, smelly up here, but other then that, nothing, no source or clue of where the knocking noise came from. A bit puzzled, he glanced around, trying to figure out what to do now. As he glanced around, he noticed..something in the corner and slowly started to move towards it. Before he knew what had happened though, the..thing raced towards him and all went dark.

He opened his eyes and looked around, confused that he was in his old home. As he looked about though, he realized what that was all about..it was just a dream. The calender and clock that were nearby helped to prove that, as well. "Ha..Elijah, you old fool, getting scared from a dream" He muttered to himself as he laid back down and closed his eyes, easily able to ignore the mild knocking noises. Who was he to say that they were the work of ghosts? They could just as easily be the work of something outside, and even if it was a ghost, he doubted it would actually hurt him.
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Re: A FOG Writing Contest - Ghost Stories *WINNER*

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