TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
Steve knew all too well what words could do to a person. He'd used words to hurt people, and to make people laugh, and cry, and get mad. And, people had used words against him...and most definitely against Ghost. And those words hurt...hurt bad. Ghost used words to evoke emotions in his song lyrics. They touched the soul of everyone who heard them. Every song had underlying meanings...some only that they shared together, others meant for more.
"I know they do, Ghost," Steve said. "This here is a book of words that your grandmother wanted you to have, and to read. There's some reason she wanted to write it down, instead of saying it to you in person. Maybe to make it more real...instead of spoken into the air to be lost and forgotten.
This you can hold in your hands and get a feeling from it. You know you can, and will, and she knew that, too. I don't think she wanted you to be afraid of what she wrote. It's just a way of her explaining something important."
Steve stopped and looked at Ghost, who was leaning against him. He could feel Ghost's warm breath on his arm, as he held the book. Ghost put out his hand and touched the suede...he closed his eyes and 'felt' the subtle vibrations, as only he could. Emotions crossed his face. Steve knew he was 'reading' the words that were not written on paper. It was like he was listening to someone unseen. He'd frown, then nod, then murmur unintelligible words, and smile...and a tear would fall.
Then, Ghost opened his eyes and nodded to Steve. He was ready to open the journal. Steve kissed the top of Ghost's head, and said, "It's ok, Ghost...we'll do it together."
So, they opened the cover, and the first page just said..."To My Ghost Child".
They turned the cream colored paper.
"Ghost if you are reading this, then I have left this world and begun my journey in the next. Don't be sad for me. I'm ready to see what happens next. I am still with you in spirit, and will look in on you from time to time. You can call on me any time.
And, Steve...this is for you, too. I know you are reading this with Ghost. You are his strength and protector...and, it has always been."
Steve's eyes widened...he didn't expect he'd be mentioned. Ghost was nodding his head, "Yes".
"Some of this is hard for me to write," his grandmother's words continued, "but, I need you to understand, this is part of your story of life, and you should know of it. By now, I would hope that my old friend from back home in the mountains, has given you the two photographs. You must have sensed who was pictured there...and, you are right. The tiny baby is you, Ghost. The only photo I have of you then. The other photo is of your mother, my daughter, Aurora. She was only fifteen when this picture was taken...and she did not live to see sixteen.
What I'm about to tell you is hard for me. She was a sweet girl, but headstrong, and wanted her independence. She fell in love with your father, and you were conceived. His name was Zen, and he was fifteen, also. He came from a village about thirty miles away. I met him once...the day he took your mother away. I do not have a picture, but he looked a lot like you, too.
They were both so young...too young, to be in the situation they were in. They were not ready to have a baby, and they would not listen to anyone's advice. So one day, he met her up at our place...out in the barn...and...and...this is so hard to remember, Ghost...they terminated her pregnancy. She was only about six months along. They aborted you, Ghost. You were so premature, I don't know how you even lived.
So, afterward, with her, weak and scared, they left on his motorcycle. That's when I first saw him. She only said she got rid of it, and she was leaving with him. That was the last I ever saw my daughter. Later that night, word came that there was a terrible accident on the twisty mountain road, and they were both killed. I was in anguish over everything. I went outside, just watching the sky, knowing there had to be two more bright stars up there.
I walked by the barn, and that's when I heard a soft cry. It was you, Ghost. You had not died. You were never supposed to be here, but you were! I got the lantern, and searched, finally finding you, a tiny little thing, lying in the hay. It had been awhile before I found you, and in that time, a spider had woven a web over you. I brushed it off, and the spider ran across your face. I screamed at it to go away. Then, I took you into the house. If I hadn't found you when I did, I don't think you'd be alive today.
I did what I could for you. You were so pale and fragile, almost translucent. All I could think of was the word, Ghost...because of how you looked, and how really, you may have been a ghost, if you hadn't been found in time. So that's what I named you. And, I loved you from the moment I saw you, and tried to do my best for you.
My friend told me I shouldn't take you away from the mountains, but I wanted to try and let you see another side of things. I hope you understand. I know you have had a hard time, even from the start...but, Ghost, everything happens as it has been written. Your life's path happens because it is meant to be. And, Steve, you are a part of Ghost's life plan...in this life, in the past lives, and in future lives. Know this is true.
Make the most of what each day brings. I know there will be struggles, and there will be times of indescribable joy. So, do not look back in regret for anything. There are many lessons to be learned, as you walk the path together.
And, Ghost, one more thing. I know you are still living in the old house. I left it to you to do with as you want. I know I led an unconventional lifestyle, and that is all you were exposed to, but do not be afraid to explore the world and all it has to offer. For that to someday happen, I put away every bit of money I could spare, for your future. I know we lived very simply, and I pray it didn't cause you harm. However, I managed to put away a nice amount. It is in a bank vault in Raleigh. The key is taped to the back cover of this journal. It should be enough to see you through, without want, for the rest of your days here. Please use it wisely, and in need. And Steve...I know you will help Ghost with this.
Please don't be upset over what I have told you. I only wanted you to know the truth about everything, and to know how much you are loved, and how much you have meant to me. I love you, Grandmother."
Ghost and Steve were both wiping tears from their faces by the end of the reading. This was beyond anything they'd ever imagined. Neither of them knew what to say to break the spell that had come over them...and so, they stayed in each other's arms, eventually falling asleep, there on the old couch.
Next installment coming soon!
Peace, Love, & Writing