TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
"I'm closing the club for awhile," said Kinsey. I'm taking a much needed break, a long vacation. Don't know if, or when, I'll open up again."
"Aw, Kinsey, you'll be back. Get rested...then you won't be able to stay away. Please don't go away forever," Steve said.
"Well, we'll see," Kinsey said, smiling back at Steve. "What are your plans, now?"
"I think me and Ghost are gonna take a road trip, too. Maybe play a few bars and clubs...whatever we find along the way, you know, check out the rest of the world beyond Missing Mile."
"Oh, you never told me about the new car..." Kinsey mentioned.
"Well, that's a weird story, Kinsey. We found out miz Deliverance left more than just the house to Ghost. She left him a bunch of money over in the bank, in Raleigh...so, we checked it out."
"And..." Kinsey asked.
"And...we'll be ok," Steve grinned. "Well, better than ok. She included me in her wishes, and...well, me and Ghost...well...it's more than we'll ever, ever have time to spend in our whole lives."
Kinsey raised his eyebrows.
"Kinsey, don't tell anyone else, we trust you...so, I guess Ghost don't care if I tell you...she left us two million dollars. I don't know how it happened, but there it all was, in cash, in a bank vault...just waiting for us."
Kinsey was flabbergasted. His old friend had stashed away that much? "My, God, Steve...I don't even know what to say."
"Yeah, we can hardly belive it either. So we got the car and paid in full with some of that money. She told me to manage it for Ghost...you know, 'cause he don't know anything about money...so, that's what I'm gonna do. I'll look after Ghost as best as I can. I know we have our problems sometimes, but...you know I love Ghost...I love him so much, Kinsey. My heart is so full of emotion every time I look at him. He's my very soul, and if anything ever happened to him...well, I wouldn't even exist either." He brushed a hand over his face to wipe the tears away.
"I know, Steve, I can see it between the both of you. Not many people would understand, but I've known you both so many years...well, there's no denying it...y'all were meant to be together, yeah, forever. So, I'll be away, and y'all will be away...guess someday we'll make it back here."
"Of course, Kinsey, this is home. We'll never leave it behind. It's a part of us all."
Kinsey nodded. "Hey, where is Ghost, anyway?"
They looked around the club, but didn't see him. Then, looking outside, they saw Ghost sitting up on the hood of the new car, leaning back on the windshield. He was staring up into the dark, midnight sky, filled with thousands of sparkly stars. They could hear him talking softly to all the unseen spirits that always surrounded him.
Steve and Kinsey smiled. "That's our Ghost," Steve said. "Hey, what 'cha lookin' at?" he asked, as he climbed up to lean back with Ghost.
Kinsey shook his head at the two of them, as he went back inside the club.
"Stars," said Ghost.
"Who ya talkin' to?"
Steve was hoping for more than a one word answer, but Ghost just replied, "Stars."
"Hmm," began Steve, but then Ghost started talking about mystical things. Steve knew that once Ghost got going, he'd hear all kinds of crazy things from his weird and wonderful friend. He loved it...Ghost stories, he called them. Sometimes they were just made up stuff, and some were dreams Ghost had had, and some were like landmarks to look for in the future. He'd get a feeling of deja-vu, and then remember...oh, yeah, Ghost said this would happen, and here it is, just like he said. So weird...
"So, you know what, Steve?" Ghost asked. "These stars here that we're lookin' at...these ones are the same ones the other side of the world are seeing. How can that be?"
Steve knew he didn't have to answer.
"And, these stars - well, some aren't there anymore - they burned out already, but their light is just now getting in our eyes. That's too sad. Poor little stars. That's why we have to look at them now, so...so...well...so they won't be alone in the night of their last little star-shine. We're here to keep them company, and that's who I was talking to...to say to them 'I loved seeing your light, you made me happy tonight, it was such a pretty sight, I wished upon your light, that we would never fight, and the ocean will catch you when you fall, and be like diamonds in the deep, so guess I shouldn't weep, maybe I'll see you again someday'."
By then, Ghost was singing the words to a haunting melody he'd made up on the spot. That was his genius lyrical mind at work...spontaneous and magical. Steve was fascinated.
"I love you, Ghost," Steve said simply.
"I know," Ghost said dreamily, "thank you for loving me, Steve.
Steve smiled. It was time for them to go home. He'd tell Ghost of his plans for a road trip, later.
And, so they left for home, that late night, never knowing what the future would bring for sure, but knowing they would be there to face it together. They didn't notice that Ghost's stars were slowly fading behind a thick mist of clouds. They both tumbled into bed, and were fast asleep, by the time the warnings were posted.
During the night, the tropical storm that had been pounding the Caribbean Islands, had developed into a hurricane, and was gathering strength. As morning dawned, it was moving into the Atlantic, and was aiming at the Georgia and Carolina's coastal region. Outer bands of rain gusted on the wind, driving the sea spray in front of it.
Next installment coming soon!
Peace, Love, & Writing