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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 223

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 223
warning...adult content




~
"Hey, Kinsey," Steve said. "Yeah, we're here, still alive. In fact, we just got up a little while ago. What? Oh, we're fine now, I think the flu, or whatever it was is gone. Anybody, still sick out there? Ok, good. Well, we've been busy...like last night..." he hesitated a second, not sure what to tell Kinsey about the coffin.

Ghost grabbed the phone, though, and started in telling Kinsey all about it. "Kinsey, we had to fight a war, and it was scary, and we threw holy shit at it, and rat poisoned it, and Steve shot the coffin all to pieces...but we won. We didn't even have to use the pillows. Huh? Oh, the demon that was here. We banished it. ...Oh, ok, here's Steve."

Steve took back the phone. "Don't worry about us, Kinsey, we're fine. Yeah, it was a...what did you call it, Ghost...a little demon? Oh, a lesser demon. Anyway, we got rid of it." He listened to Kinsey for a minute. "Ok, sure, we can drive in today. See ya soon." He shrugged.

"Kinsey want's to see us in person, to see if we're really ok," he said.

"Are we going, now?" Ghost asked.

"Yeah, why not. Get dressed...we're going to town."

"Why does he want to see us, all of a sudden?"

"I don't know," Steve said. "Probably 'cause we haven't seen him in so long, you know, with everybody being sick."

After getting ready to go, Steve revved the engine of the T-bird, to get it warmed up. "Man, we haven't been anywhere in awhile. It'll be good to drive and see everybody," he said. He pulled out onto the highway, speeding as usual.

Ghost leaned back, letting the fresh air from the open window, blow his hair back. "This feels good."

"I know, and it'll clear our heads of being all stuffy in the house," Steve said.

"I need to write on my wall, too. I brought my markers," Ghost said.

The trip to the club only took them about ten minutes. "She still drives like a young'un," Steve said, patting the dashboard, and grinning.

Ghost rolled his eyes, and got out of the car. He was happy that Steve liked his car so much. It was family, after all these years. He pushed open the heavy wooden door to the Yew. They stood there a minute, letting their eyes adjust to the dim interior.

"Hey, that was fast, guys," Kinsey said, as he came out of his office. "C'mon in...good to see ya finally."

"Hey, Kinsey," Ghost said, giving him a hug. "I'm gonna write on the wall." He headed over behind the stage.

"Turn on the lights, if you want to, Ghost," Kinsey said. "Sit down, Steve...want a beer?"

"Sure, Kinsey," Steve said, pulling up a chair at a table near the arcade room.

Kinsey sat down, smiling. "I gave all you guys a call...they should be here any time now."

"Is this some kind of special meeting?" Steve asked.

"No, not really. It's just I want to see y'all, to catch up on things, you know...well, I really just needed some company," Kinsey said.

Steve laughed. "Oh, sure...anytime. We never hang out as much anymore, for some reason. Just so much going on, I guess."

Kinsey nodded. "Yeah, then all of us getting sick like that. Do you think that was all it was, Steve? It was kinda funny with that other business with the other earthquake, too."

"We had the same feeling," Steve said.

"What were you talking about earlier...a demon...again?"

"Yep, at our house. Ghost thinks it was an underling to the big one that was over at Trevor's, and it followed us home. It must have been hanging around all this time out in the graveyard, or something." Steve frowned. "Then, lately it was doing weird shit, and maybe even those earthquakes...or at least made us all believe that's what it was." He paused a minute, taking a swig of his beer. "It got more serious, so we busted him. I think it's gone for good now."

"You really believe that hocus-pocus stuff, Steve?" Kinsey asked.

Steve took a breath, and let it out slow. "Kinsey, for real, I don't know what to think. But, I know what I saw, and whether it was real or a hallucination, it was not good. It sure seemed real, to me, though...and I did see it...just once. When I turned on the flashlight...God...it was so ugly. It roared, Kinsey. I didn't actually hear it, but I felt it...inside. Like when you hear somebody's bass on the car radio turned up really loud, and it shakes your insides. That's how it felt." He shuddered. "And, that one little look at it...man, it was so freaking ugly."

"Damn," Kinsey said. "Nothing like that around here."

"Be glad it isn't. That crap scares me. Ghost was scared, too, but you should have seen him. Well, you did that other time, and this time, last night, was just as intense."

"What all happened?"

"Oh, we gathered up all kinds of things to banish the thing." He laughed. Some of it was kinda silly, now that I think about it. We had pillows, and TV trays, and bike helmets for protection. We poured rat poison and salt all around the yard, and Ghost mixed up some more of that oily herb stuff. He flung some of it at the thing. Hit it, too. But the best, was Ghost. The words he said, yelling how he was gonna kill the demon, and go away for good, 'cause we killed vampires, and he was nothing compared to that...well, he was totally in charge. And, by God, it worked." He shook his head, remembering it all. "Oh, I shot holes in the coffin, too. Then it was gone for good. Kinsey, how does Ghost do that? He's so flaky, and wouldn't ever kill anything. He's scared of spiders, and even his own shadow, most of the time. Then he transforms, or something, and kills vampires and demons. I see it happen, and it's so awesome, every time."

Kinsey shook his head. "I don't know, Steve. That's just how it is. Ghost has some magical power he was born with...even he don't know how he does it, I'm sure. Just be glad he uses it for good, and not evil."

Steve nodded. "You got that right."

They continued to drink their beers, thinking their own thoughts for a bit. They could hear Ghost, humming to himself, over at the wall. Then the door clattered open, and Zach and Trevor came in.

"Hey, guys, grab a beer and come sit," Kinsey said.

They did, and joined Steve and Kinsey at the table. "What's up?" Zach asked.

"Nothing, Kinsey just needed company, so he called in his posse, " Steve said, and laughed.

"Yeah, so what?" Kinsey asked. "I miss you guys hanging out around here."

"Where's Ghost?" Zach asked.

"He's over at the wall," Steve said.

"Ah, it's been awhile. Guess he has to catch up." Zach got up to go over there. "Just gonna see how he's doing, then."

"You and Zach feeling better, too?" Steve asked.

"Yeah," Trevor said. "For awhile there I thought we'd die, and poor old Kinsey got caught, but we're glad he helped us out."

"Well, I couldn't get up enough energy to leave," Kinsey said, laughing.  "Who's ready for another one?" he asked, walking over to the bar. They all were.

The back door banged open, and Terry and R. J. came in. They got themselves a beer, and pulled up a chair. "Hey, heard y'all had trouble with another demon, Steve," Terry said. "What happened?"

Steve explained the story again. He didn't mind. He felt fine being the spokesperson for "Demon Destroyers R Us".  They all liked the name, so were taking turns making up advertising blurbs for the 'company'...such as, "Ghost's trump demons every time", and "Demon Destroyer's do it at night". They were all laughing, as Ghost and Zach came back to the table.

"What's so funny?" Zach asked.

They repeated some of the jokes, and Ghost and Zach came up with some of their own. After a bit, Ghost said, "This isn't for real, is it? I don't want to do it any more."

"Naw, just messing around...unless you want to," Steve said, winking.

"Uh-uh, not me," Ghost said.

"This place sure needs some good times, again," Kinsey said. "Are all of you so busy you can't find time to do a show, anymore?" He looked at Terry and Zach. "The regulars come in all the time, but the jukebox just isn't the same."

"Ah, you know how it is, Kinsey," Terry said.

"The last  one was before Christmas, for crying out loud," Kinsey said. "And, I'm talking Gumbo here...Ghost and Steve are going out to California to help Linda with her move back here. So, Gumbo...get busy...I'll give ya two weeks."

"Sure, Kinsey, we can do that...can't we Terry?" Zach asked.

"Yeah, guess so. You figure it out, Dude, you're good at that. Then, let me know what to practice," Terry said.

~
Next part coming soon!




Peace, Love, & Writing

Sunday, September 27, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 222

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 222
warning...adult content




~
Ghost felt around on the table for his oils and herbs. His hands were shaking, as he poured and crushed the mixture together in the little bowl, chanting the words over it like he'd done before. Then, standing up, he spoke to the thing.

Steve felt his heart skipping beats, but he held onto Ghost's jacket, just in case the demon took off with him.

"I see you...I hear you...make yourself known to us," Ghost said, not loud, but steady. "Come closer and be identified, then we can come to an understanding." He kept on talking, and then whispered to Steve, "It's coming closer. He's over by the coffin, now."

Steve still couldn't see anything. His teeth were chattering.

"We're not afraid of you, so you can stop trying to scare us. We just need you to be gone from here. You don't belong here...go back to the underworld." Ghost stared out across the back yard, pausing just a second, before speaking again.

"You probably have friends there. They miss you and want you to come back. You're their leader now, and you have to go to them. You'll never be appreciated up here among the living...ever...so, do the right thing, ok, 'cause we're tired of your shit...all the moaning, and clanking, and moving things around. It don't work anyway. We're wise to you, and we'll do everything we can to banish you. NOW GO BEFORE I GET MAD!"

He held up the pot of oily herbs, and said the incantation again, and waited for a response.
"He's still here, Steve, but he's thinking about what I said."

Steve was sweating, now, his forehead wet, with drips running into his eyes, stinging them. Ghost began talking to the demon, again.

"You know I'm right...go away and leave us alone...forever. We killed a bad assed vampire before, and we sure can kill you, too, so don't even try us. Come any closer and you'll get a taste of this here nasty stuff...ya hear me? BE GONE!" He stirred the pot, so the thing could see it.

"Hold up the big cross, Steve," Ghost said. Steve grabbed the wooden cross that was on the table. "Ok, he's moved back a little."

He suddenly put his hands over his ears. "Damn...he roared loud...did you hear it?"

Steve shook his head. He hadn't heard anything.

"Ok, that's your last chance," Ghost said. "Have some of this." He lobbed a spoonful of oil at the thing, hitting it. "Got'cha, asshole," he yelled. "Ya want more?" He waited a second, breathing hard. "Turn on the flashlight, Steve, let's blind him."

Steve flicked it on, and in that second, he actually could see a form. "Oh, my God!" he screamed. He dropped the flashlight, and it went out. With shaking hands, he reached over and got his gun from the table. He heard a whining noise...what was it? Then he realized it was himself, whining out loud with every breath. "Can I shoot it now?" he managed to ask. "Do we need to put on our pillows and stuff?"

He kept on jabbering whatever came to him. "We should light the candles, huh? Ghost?"

Ghost was quiet, just keeping an eye on the entity.

"What's it doing? That's the ugliest thing I ever saw," Steve said.

"Shh..." Ghost grabbed Steve's hand again, to calm him. "Just wait, ok...it's not coming closer. Maybe we don't have to do anything else," he said. "And I need to hear if it says anything."

Steve nodded, still trying to see something out there. But, he'd only gotten that one glimpse.

"Hand me the holy water bottle...hurry," Ghost said. Steve found it, and gave it to Ghost.

"Hey, you know what this is? It's holy water...Jesus blessed water...and I'm fixin' to pour it on you, unless you go away," Ghost said. He uncorked it. "He's cringing now, Steve...backing up some more." He watched the swirling mist, as it undulated in that one spot.

"We have  lots more stuff to kill you with...so if you want to die forever, just come on...'cause you have nothing but your misty form, and loud voice...and that's all. It doesn't scare us, and you will never be us. Go away and never come back," he yelled. He made like to throw the holy water, and it made the thing retreat a bit more.

"Hey, you're standing in it right now, anyway...holy water and rat poison is all over the grass...so you're dead already. We're bored of you and your stink. BE GONE!" Ghost yelled, and flung a few drops at the thing.

Steve was shaking all over from fright, but he was thinking, 'wow, just wow...listen to Ghost yell at the thing...amazing...'

"Shit, he's loud, Steve, but I think he's got the idea, now," Ghost said. "He's almost faded away already. I think we may have banished him, for real."

As they watched, there was a small explosion of light out by the coffin. Both of them saw it, and heard a popping electrical sound. Then all was dark and there was silence.

"He's gone. I don't see, or hear, or smell, or even feel that it's here," Ghost said.

"Can I shoot something, now?" Steve asked. "I really need to."

"Yeah, sure, shoot all ya want. If there's anything left of him, it'll reinforce our demand," Ghost said.

Steve aimed for the coffin...or at least the dark coffin shaped thing by the fence, and fired several shots, hitting the mark every time. Then, he shot out into the graveyard, just in case. "This is for disturbing the peace of the old guys out here. They're heroes...leave them alone, too," he yelled. "Damn, that felt good," he said, and smiled.

Ghost smiled too, and shook himself, to try and relax a bit. "Yeah, it does. We did a good job, and I'm pretty sure that's the end of it."

"What now?" asked Steve. "Do we still stand guard tonight?"

Ghost shrugged. "Well, I think I'd feel better if we did, just in case, ya know," he said, and yawned. "But, I'm so tired, I might go to sleep."

"Yeah, me too. Guess we can sit out here for a little while, then I'm going on in," Steve said.

"Ok. Oh, in the morning, don't let Spirit out, ok? The rat poison is still on the ground until it rains. He'll just have to be an inside cat for awhile," Ghost said.

They sat out in the darkness of the night for a bit longer. "Hey, hand me one of those snacks," Ghost said.

Steve rummaged around in the paper sack, and brought out peanut butter crackers, and two beers that were not quite ice cold any more. "You were really good doing that banishment stuff. You sounded in charge the whole time. I'm impressed, Dude." He handed Ghost a beer. "Me, I was whining like a little puppy. I wasn't brave at all." He was thinking how amazing little, pacifist Ghost was during the whole ordeal. "You really let that thing have it."

Ghost laughed. "Well, I didn't half way know what I was doing. Something just kinda took over, and I don't know how. I can't even remember what I said."

"Yeah? Well, I do, and it was great, and strong, and it worked," Steve nodded. "Oh yeah, somewhere in there you said weird words, like a foreign language or something. Now that I think about it, maybe it was one of those old mountain curses you don't even know you know. It comes out in situations like this...ya think?"

"Maybe...whatever did it, I'm glad it's over," Ghost said. "I wasn't feeling scared either, which is weird, 'cause I was real scared before. Now, I'm kinda freaked out about it all, but it worked, I think."

They sat out there on the back porch awhile, eating the snacks, and looking into the woods. It was quiet, and they heard no more disturbances. Ghost kept yawning. "I have to go to bed, Steve. I can't stay awake. You can stay out here if you want to, but I really think it's over."

"Yeah, I'm coming in, too. There's no way I'm out here by myself," Steve said.

They gathered up their equipment. "Give me those pillows. I'll put them back on the bed," Ghost said.

Steve put away the guns, leaving the other things in the box, to be put away later.

~
The next day, they finally woke about noon. "I had a weird dream," said Steve. "I kept hearing bells ringing, and we were on a game show, where we had to smash a monster on the head, and a bell would ring when it was destroyed. We won prizes."

"Cool," Ghost said. "What kind of prizes?"
Steve thought a minute. "We won things like a guitar, and cases of beer, and a famous artist oil painting, some concert tickets...well, a bunch of stuff, 'cause we were good at bashing the monsters. But, we told them we already had some of that, and could we trade it in for a trip on a plane, so they let us."

"That's a good one," Ghost said. "It sounds familiar, like us chasing away bad guys, and going to go on a plane to see your sister. It's funny how dreams are."

Steve agreed. "Yeah, we do need to plan our trip, and I have to call Linda...like today." He got up to go make the morning coffee.

Ghost fed Spirit, who then wanted outside. "Nope, kitty can't go out, sorry. You have your box, go use that, today." Spirit trotted off to the other room. As he waited for the coffee to be ready, he pulled open the kitchen curtain to take a look into the back yard. Everything looked normal. The coffin was still there, but now shot through with bullet holes.

"You aimed real good in the dark, Steve."

"I did? Let me see. I didn't know where the damn thing was in the dark...you say I hit it?"

"Yeah, just about every time, looks like," Ghost said.

Steve laughed. "Wow, guess I did, huh?"

They had a really late breakfast, then went out front to sit on the swing. Their phone rang, just as they sat down. Steve answered, then whispered over to Ghost, "It's Kinsey."

~
Next part coming soon!




Peace, Love, & Writing

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 221

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 221
warning...adult content




~
After eating their supper of eggs and toast, they hauled the box of equipment out to the back porch. It was just beginning to get dusky outside...that in between time of light and dark. Pink streaks from the lingering sunset, filtered through the pine tree branches, giving a surreal pinkish glow to the shadows in the yard. It was quiet out. There was no wind, and the birds had all gone to their nests. Even the forest owl they usually heard, was quiet...unnaturally quiet, Steve thought.

"Get our jackets and some blankets, Ghost," Steve said. "I'll get the big flashlight, too." He had momentarily forgotten they'd not gone out in the back yard all day. Now, he remembered why...the coffin. He shivered, as he stared at it. It had not moved since this morning.

Ghost broke the silence, as he came out the door, loaded down with jackets, blankets, and a paper sack with snacks in it. "Hey, I got us some stuff to eat," he said, as he set it all down on a small table.

"Good thinking," Steve said. "Let's arrange it. We have the lawn chairs, the table, and all this other stuff, so we'll just sit back and wait."

"Do you want the phone, too?" asked Ghost.

"Oh, yeah," Steve said, and got up to go inside for it. He locked the front door before coming back out. "Now, first things first. I'm going to pour this salt and poison around. You hold the flashlight."

They went to the edge of the yard, and sprinkled them sparingly, as they walked a large circle around the house. After washing their hands, just in case poison got on their hands, they sat in the chairs, and begin the vigil...waiting for something to happen, for something to come at them from the dark.

After about an hour, Ghost was getting restless. He kept changing positions, getting up and stretching, yawning, tapping his feet, and humming. Steve gritted his teeth. He knew Ghost wasn't paying attention.

"Would ya sit down and be quiet? How the hell would we hear anything, with all the noise you're making?"

"What? What are we listening for, anyway," Ghost asked. "I thought we were just watching the coffin and stuff."

"Yeah, well you keep making noise, it'll scare away the...whatever it is," Steve said.

"Well, isn't that what we're trying to do...scare it away?"

Steve sighed. Technically, Ghost was right. "Yeah, we are, but if it comes out, we can maybe get rid of it for good. If it just is scared to come out tonight, it'll try again and again. So, we kinda want it to do something. Understand?"

"Oh, yeah, now I do. So, guess I have to be quiet and still and concentrate," Ghost said, and sat back down.

"Uh-huh, and use your senses to see if you feel it out there anywhere close."

"Ok, I'll try," Ghost said. He stood back up by the railing, closed his eyes, and breathed deep, letting it out slowly.

Steve watched, as Ghost swayed from side to side, sort of like using radar to detect faint noises or emanations in the atmosphere. He'd seen Ghost do this hundreds of times, and it never failed to fascinate him.

After a few minutes, Ghost opened his eyes, staring out into the graveyard. "It's out there," he whispered. "It's not real close. I can barely feel it, but it knows were out here. It's hesitant to make a move just yet. It's...it's...gathering strength to manifest." He kept staring at one particular spot across the darkening tombstones.

"Get the candles ready, but be quiet. It'll probably suck the energy from the flashlight battery...and maybe the house electricity, too." He breathed deep again. "I can tell it's not one of the old Civil War guys doing this." He turned toward Steve.

"It's a lesser demon...one that was left over from Trevor's house. It must have clung to us after that night, and has been roaming the graveyard all this time. He thinks he's the boss now...of something...or somebody." He shrugged, and gazed back over the cemetery. "I don't sense any more than the one, though."

Taking another deep breath, made him cough. "He smells...like rotten eggs, or sulfur...well, not good."

Steve tried to smell the air, but didn't detect anything unusual. He did set out the candles and lighter within easy reach, though. "What now?" he whispered.

Ghost shrugged. "Wait, I guess...'til he comes closer, so I can see him."

"Can you talk to it?"

"Not yet. It's just making grumbling sounds. If it gets stronger, I'll maybe hear a word, or a scream, or something." He sat back down. "I think we need to pretend we don't know it's there. Just act normal. Then, when we look out the side of our eyes, you know, not direct focus on it, and well...do something with our stuff, I guess," Ghost said.

Steve nodded. "What first...knife throwing?"

"Huh-uh, first I'm gonna do the oils and herbs. I'll crush them and say the banishment words to it...and flick some holy water at it," Ghost said. "But, if that isn't working, then we throw knives, and shoot it, and all the rest, 'cause then it'll be all out war." His voice caught for a second in a half sob. "And Steve, we have to win it...we have to win it...or...or...we'll get possessed, I guess. And, we'll be one of them." He shivered.

Chills ran up Steve's arms, and he gulped. "Is this for real? I mean, would we really be one of them...a dead demon forever? Would we still be looking like us, just walking around, just be weird and mean like a zombie or something?" His voice was getting higher pitched, the more scared he became.

"Yeah, that's about it...I think," Ghost said. "And, if one of us gets taken, the other of us has to, to...'cause that'd be horrible to see one of us be like that...ok?" He looked up into Steve's eyes. "So, if I see it's got you, I'll give up and be one, too. Will you...for me?"

Steve's eyes were wide with fear, now, and he could tell that Ghost was totally serious. "Yeah, yeah, of course I would, Ghost. You know I would. I couldn't let you be one without me," he said.

Ghost nodded. "Good, but maybe we can banish it first." He sounded confident.

"Oh, yeah, we can do it, we will," Steve said.

"Shhh..." Ghost said. "I hear something." Steve thought his heart stopped, right that second.

They stared out into the graveyard, gone dark now. Their eyes had adjusted to the dark , and they'd not turned on the flashlight. Only the stars and a half moon had control of the sky.

"Ok, kinda look out the side of your eyes, Steve," Ghost said. "I can see it now...can you? It's just a mist, but it's moving this way." He gripped Steve's hand, hard.

Steve tried, but didn't see a mist anywhere. "I don't see it," he said.

Ghost kept looking at it. "Oh, well, it's real swirly and slow, and some kind of...well, I'm not sure, but maybe a face?" Ghost whispered, then took a breath of air, and gagged. "Gahhh, it stinks. Pretend we don't see it, ok?" He looked away and tried to listen for any sounds.

"Shit...it sounds mean, Steve. Even if it's an underling, he's still got power. I'm getting the oils ready, right now, before it's too late."

~
Next part coming soon!




Peace, Love, & Writing

Sunday, September 20, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 220

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 220
warning...adult content





~
Ghost came out of the back storage room, making sure to close the door. Taking the box to his bedroom, he added the sage brooms, demon banishing kit, candles, and holy water to it. When he came out into the living room, he saw that Steve had arranged his armory on the coffee table, in precise rows. He grinned...typical Steve move.

"Here's my stuff," Ghost said, setting the box down. "What's all this?"

"What does it look like? It's stuff we might need," Steve said.

Ghost looked amused by some of it. "Are we gonna carry all these things out in the back yard at one time? Are we gonna build a fort and throw crap at this invisible thing?"

"Uh...sure, I guess. You got a better idea?" Steve said.

"Not really, but I'll do my words and all, like the other time." He went into the kitchen, to wash his face and hands. Having touched all the old dusty items back there, he felt dirty. When he came back, he handed Steve a Coke, then sat down on the couch, with his own.

He looked over what Steve had gathered up for weaponry. "Let's see...ya got the guns, good...ya got the big knives, good...and ya got the salt, good...and you got your baseball bat, good...and ya got...pillows?...and bike helmets?" he laughed.

"Man, I haven't seen those in forever. Grandmother made us wear them, but we always took 'em off after we got down the road."

Steve laughed at the memory, too. "Yeah, I figure it couldn't hurt. We need some kind of body armor. The helmets will protect our heads, and the pillows...we can tie a pillow on our fronts, just in case it throws something at us," Steve said.

"Oh, yeah, good thinking," Ghost said, nodding. "Why are these metal TV tray tops out here? You gonna serve supper to it before we kill it?" He started laughing.

"Shut it, Ghost...it's for using as a shield. We can hold it in front of us...you know...a shield."

"Oh, ok," Ghost said, trying to stop laughing. "But, if we're holding all this, how do we throw things?"

"I don't know, we just play it by ear. Whatever happens, we react however we can, ok?" Steve said, getting annoyed now, at Ghost's questions.

"Ok, well, look at my stuff, then. Is all this ok?" Ghost said. He shoved the box over so Steve could see inside. 

Steve picked up each item, giving his opinion. "Yeah, this is all good, except I'm not sure about these medicines. I mean, they sound good and all, but you figure out how we can use them." He picked up the small, leather journal. "What's this book?"

Ghost shrugged. "It was just in there. I guess grandmother wrote something, I don't know what, yet. What does it say?"

Steve wiped away some of the dust, then read a page or two to himself for a minute.

"Damn, Ghost...you know what this is? It's her spell book...it's like recipes for doing spells. Look...there's lists of what you need, and words to say, for all kinds of shit. Let's see, this one is for curing stomach ache...and this one is...hah, for lovers. It's a damn love potion." Steve was cackling with amusement. "Oh, my God...this is crazy. I wonder if anybody ever used it? Oh, look...here's one for getting rats out of the house."

"Let me see that," Ghost reached for the book. Frowning, he read a few pages. "Was she really a witch, Steve? I still don't think so, but I don't get these...spells. They sound weird."

Steve shrugged. "See anything about demons or evil spirits? That's what we need right now." He sighed, having a feeling that Ghost was a bit upset by the spell book. "I don't think she was a witch, Ghost, but even if she was, she only did good things for people."

"Yeah, that's right," Ghost agreed. "Hey, here's something that might work. It says it's for driving out evil from your house. It says to use sage, but there's more, and some words to say, too." He read out the incantation, then looked up at Steve. "Ya think it would work?"

"Hell, I'm ready to try anything, and as soon as possible. We just gotta write down each move we'll do, and the plan, so we don't get confused in the heat of battle."

Ghost nodded. "Ok, so next, we plan our plan?"

"Yep, that's the plan," Steve said. They smiled and high-fived. "Go get some paper. We need to get this organized."

When Ghost got back with a notepad and pen, he sat back down on the couch, with his pen poised over the page. "What'cha want me to write?"

"Well, start with all this equipment. Put it on one side of the page. Then we'll write how we plan to use it."

Ghost nodded, and began the list. "Ok, knives...are we gonna throw them, or cut and stab with them?" he asked.

Steve thought a moment. "Well, if the enemy is far away, we'll throw. If he comes close, we'll slash."

Ghost wrote throw/slash beside the word knives. "We already know what to do with the TV trays and pillows, so..." he said, writing that down. "Ok, done. What about the rat poison?"

"Well, we could pour it, and the salt, all around the perimeter of the yard, front and back...a circle of protection, ya know." Steve said.

"Ok, I'll write that down," Ghost said. "Are we doing all this at night, or day?"

Steve frowned. "I'd rather do it in daylight, but this thing seems to only come out at night to do it's dirty work. So, I guess night, or at least almost dark," he said.

"Are we gonna call it out, and yell at it to just come on over and get shit thrown at it?" asked Ghost. "I don't think he'd come. So, are we just gonna wait and see if he shows up?"

Steve gave him a look. "Damn, Ghost, how should I know? I haven't done this before, except over at Trevor's house. This one is different."

"I know, but..." Ghost started.

"Here, give me the paper, Ghost. If you're not gonna write, and just ask questions, I'll do to myself." He yanked the notepad out of Ghost's hands.

Ghost looked hurt. "Fine, just do it all, then," he muttered. He leaned back on the couch, and didn't say any more.

After a few minutes of writing, and explaining the plan, Steve noticed Ghost was quiet. He looked up at him, and saw him frowning, his eyes dark.

"What the hell's the matter, now? You mad 'cause I took the paper?" he asked.

"Hmmph...you go on and do whatever you want. I already know what I'm doing, and I don't need to write it down. And, I don't need any help doing it, either," Ghost said.

"Geeze, you're touchy today," Steve said. "Here, here's your paper." He tried to hand it to Ghost, but Ghost just slapped it away, and it fell on the floor.

Steve stared at him. "This whole thing is for both of us...to get rid of the crazy, invisible spirit you dug up."

"Yeah, it's all my fault, Steve...it's all on me, 'cause I can see them and you can't . I didn't ask for it to push me down and make me dig. I didn't tell it to drag that coffin up here...and, I don't even want to deal with it again. I said before, I don't want to. Can't you hear me, Steve." He took a shuddery breath, as he blinked back tears that threatened to fall.

"I'm scared of it...more than you even know," he said. Closing his eyes, the tears fell down his cheeks.

"Aww, Ghost, I know...I hear ya," Steve said. "But, we have to do something, or it'll keep on terrorizing us...you understand?"

Ghost nodded, wiping his face. "I know," he whispered.

"Come here," Steve said. He sat down on the couch, hugging Ghost. "We're gonna be ok. We'll do it together. No bad guy is gonna get over on us, ok?" He tried to ease the tension.

"Yeah, but I'm so tired of it. I think it's draining my energy, already," Ghost said. "I can barely think straight anymore. And now, we have to stay up all night and fight a war...with crappy homemade shit...it's too much, Steve." He sighed, leaning his head on Steve's shoulder.

"They want our souls, ya know. That's what it's about. And, they know they have all the power, just by thinking of it...and Steve, we're just regular people. Fighting off the psychic realm is hard. They never, ever give up, 'cause they want in us...to live life again, and they'll try anything to trick us to give up. Why can't they leave us alone?" Ghost cried out.

Steve didn't halfway believe any of that, but who was he to say? Ghost had the gift of vision, and had never been wrong on it before. Not knowing what to say to ease Ghost's mind, he tried to sound convincing, though.

"Ghost, we are the good guys here. We have the goodness of the universe on our side, and good triumphs over evil, every time. When the time comes, we'll have the strength and energy to do whatever we have to do." He looked into Ghost's eyes.

"Believe in us, Ghost...we'll be ok."

Ghost nodded, and sat up. "You're right, I was just getting depressed about it, but yeah, I know we'll be ok," he said. He looked out the screen door. "It's getting a little dark out there, already. I'm hungry, so maybe we should eat before we go out there...you know...for energy."

"Good idea," Steve said.

They went into the kitchen to find something to fortify themselves with.

~

Next part coming soon!



Peace, Love, & Writing

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 219

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 219
warning...adult content



~
When Steve finished cleaning himself up in the bathroom, he was hungry. Going into the kitchen, he saw that the breakfast Ghost had cooked, was done, and on the table, but Ghost wasn't there.

"Ghost, where'd ya go?" he asked, looking around.

"I'm in here," Ghost said, from the living room.

Steve finally saw him, standing behind the long curtains, looking out the window. He had his coffee with him, and was sipping it.

"What 'cha see?" Steve asked.

"Nothing, so far. I want to go out front like always, but is it ok...like safe, now? Or, is something creepy gonna jump out?"

"Let me get some coffee, and we'll go out together, ok?"

When he got back to the living room, Steve opened the wooden door. They paused before opening the screen. A cold burst of air hit them, making them shiver, but it did refresh them.

"This is ridiculous, ya know?" Steve said.

"Yeah, but it's still scary."

Steve sighed. "So, ok...I'll open the screen, and we'll wait a second before we go out. Ready?"

"Uh-huh," Ghost said, nodding his head, and standing close behind Steve.

Steve slowly pushed open the screen door, and stepped out onto the porch. "So far, so good," he said.

Ghost amped up his senses to feel out the atmosphere...good or bad. "It feels fine out here," he said, as he sat on the swing.

Steve leaned on the railing, scanning the driveway and woods. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Spirit pounced around at dry leaves, and seemed happy enough...not scared or puffed up. They all relaxed for a little while.

"Are we gonna go out back," Ghost asked.

"No, we're not...it's dead to us, now," Steve said.

"Never, ever again? That's sad, and not right."

"Well, at least for now we're not. We're not going to crumble with fear for long. They, whoever they are, aren't gonna chase us away by doing stupid coffin tricks. No way...but, later on, like in a day or two, we'll go out there and see what's what, ok?" Steve said. "We just have to prepare ourselves, arm ourselves..."

Ghost frowned. "Arms...ya mean our guns?"

"Yeah, and salt and holy water, and crosses, and garlic, and words, and...well, everything," Steve said. "Oh, and you need to burn your sage brooms. Wave 'em around out there."

"Yeah, I can do that."

Steve nodded. "And get your camera to take pictures for proof."

"Ok, it's like solving a mystery, huh? That's kinda cool, and not scary."

"That's right. When we get our minds to think of it like that, it has no power over us. We'll put an end to their shenanigans," Steve said.

Ghost giggled at the word. "That's good."

Steve smiled. "Ok then, we have a plan. Let's go eat." They went inside and enjoyed their breakfast.

Steve did pose another suggestion. "Ya know what? After we do our plan, I think we need a vacation from this place. A re-set of our traumas, lately."

"A time out? Where?"

"I was thinking we could go to my sister's house in California. We could help get her moved. I'm sure she needs help, and she'd love us to come...she asked already."

"And you can see your other sister, and the kids," Ghost said.

"That's right. What do you think?"

"It sounds good to me," Ghost agreed. "Just, are we gonna drive all that way?"

"Well, we could," Steve said. "Of course it would take a lot of days...or...we could try flying again? I mean, Linda went both ways, and nothing bad happened. I think we could do it, too, don't you?"

"Maybe we could," Ghost said slowly. "Guess we could try it. We did want to try it before, and...ok. I'll be brave if you will."

"Well, there ya go, and it'll be way faster than driving. I think I'll call her, in a little while, to let her know our plans."

They finished eating and doing the dishes. Neither one admitted to wanting to peek out the back window.

~
Settled back in the living room, now, Steve said, "Let's see what all we have to bust this mystery with, ok?"

Ghost jumped up from the couch. "Ok, I'll get my stuff and you get...well...other stuff," he said. He went to his bedroom to rummage around for things to use. He found his silver necklace, and sage brooms. The little bottle of holy water was pretty much empty, but he thought he could refresh it somehow. He found his demon banishing kit, from before, seeing that there were a few things left over. Opening the little packets of herbs and powders, he took a sniff. They seemed ok, if not exactly fresh. Then he read the instruction sheet again, and looked around the bedroom for more things they could use. There were white purity candles over on the dresser, which he put with the other things, to use if needed. Finding nothing else of use in there, he went over to the back storage room.

He didn't like this room. It was always a little creepy back there. The dim light bulb didn't help matters. His grandmother's herbs and potions, what were left of them, still lined the old wooden shelves. The room was pretty much like it had always been before the hurricane. Some things had been ruined on the bottom shelves, but the rest was just fine. He looked at the little cardboard boxes and colored glass vials. They all had obscure instructions on them, written on now yellowing labels. Smelling the stale aroma of long dried herbs, he began to daydream...

He begged to come in here, as a kid, and every so often he was allowed to. It still felt like trespassing, even now, whenever he entered. Strange things happened in this room; he and Steve had both seen things. There were spiders hiding, waiting to jump out and get on him. He shivered. Was his grandmother really a witch, like some people claimed? He didn't think so, but there sure were a lot of witchy like things in here.

He sighed, then sneezed from the dust particles. Looking closer at the labels, he had no idea if any of them would work on whatever it was that was harassing them now. One said 'removes curses', so he took it, to add to their arsenal. Another bottle had a skull and crossed bones, and the words 'poison - use only in case of infestations'.  He wrinkled his nose, but took it, too. As he continued to look around, he could hear Steve out in the living room, making strange clanking noises.

"Hey, Ghost...come on out...we probably got enough stuff now," Steve hollered.

"Ok, just a minute," Ghost yelled back. He saw an empty box on a shelf, so pulled it out. Just as he did, a small leather notebook fell to the floor. He picked it up and flipped through the pages. He'd never seen it before, but it was his grandmother's handwriting filling the pages. Wanting to read it, he put it in the box with his other chosen items.

~
Next part coming soon!



Peace, Love, & Writing

Monday, September 14, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 218

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 218
warning...adult content




~
Ghost was writing in his journal all that had happened earlier out in the graveyard. He was bent over, his pale hair, now clean, was hanging down, shading his face. Steve was lying back on the couch, his head on the arm rest, trying to read, but was having trouble concentrating. They both were being distracted by the noises outside. The wind chimes hanging from the front porch overhang, were tinkling, as a cold front moved into the area, with steady wind. Occasionally, there was a thumping sound at the back door.

"It's just the wind," Steve said, every time, but they still jumped when it happened, and looked toward the kitchen.

As the wind got stronger, it seeped through the cracks in the window, off in the back room, making a whistling sound. Ghost looked up from his book.

"This is driving me crazy. It's too much scary noises."

"Yeah, I know what you mean," Steve said. "It's all normal stuff, but it's still spooky, tonight."

"It's getting cold in here, too. Can you feel it?" Ghost asked, shivering. He pulled his blanket tighter around himself.

"Let me check the radiator," Steve said. He got up to feel it. "It's still working, but I don't think the valve is turned all the way open." He fiddled with the lever, to open it more. "Ok, let it do it's thing," he said, as he snuggled back on the couch.

The radiator made hissing and pinging noises, now. Ghost put his hands over his ears to shut out the extra noise. "I really can't deal with this...I'm so nervous," he said.

"Well, you want me to play a song, or turn the tv on awhile?" asked Steve. "Maybe it would mask the other noises."

"Yeah, try that...play a song. My head feels sparkly, and I need to be calm, or I'm gonna be sick," Ghost said. He closed his eyes, the left one already twitching, as he covered it with his hand. He moaned a little.

Steve grabbed his guitar and softly strummed a favorite ballad. He was scared Ghost would go into a seizure any minute, or get a migraine. He sang, and Ghost began humming along, but Steve did notice Ghost was totally out of tune. This scared him even more, but he didn't say anything. After going through several songs, Ghost leaned over on Steve's shoulder.  He seemed more at ease, now. Steve played a few minutes longer, before putting his guitar down by the side of the couch. He adjusted himself, and propped his feet up on the coffee table. Ghost lay his head in Steve's lap, and felt Steve tenderly twirl a length of his hair around his fingers. He was able to fall asleep.
~
It seemed only a second had passed, when Steve felt Spirit walking around on top of them, meowing for his breakfast. It was bright and sunny outside, Steve noticed, when he cracked open his eyes. Ghost hugged Spirit, and smiled. "Kitty's hungry," he said. He sat up and stretched. "I'll make coffee and feed him." He didn't mention anything of the night before, and he seemed to be feeling normal, again.

The house was warm, this morning, and as Steve went to take a shower, he could hear Ghost starting the coffee, and putting together some kind of breakfast for them. After starting the bacon in a frying pan, Ghost glanced out the kitchen window, as usual, and at first thought all was normal.

The wind was still blowing some, through the pine trees, and it looked sunny, but cold out. As he scanned the back yard, he froze. This wasn't right. The yard looked different...but what was it? He took in more detail, and reached out his senses. There...by the garden fence...what was it he was looking at...it seemed out of place...not normal. Then it registered on his mind. His mouth dropped open, and his eyes got wide. He felt it, before he heard it...he screamed...loud and long, again and again. He couldn't move, and heard the screams as if from someone else. He could not look away.

The bacon began burning in the pan, but  Ghost didn't notice. Steve had just turned off the shower water, and now heard the screaming. Grabbing a towel, he ran to the kitchen. The smell of burnt bacon and smoke was strong in the air. Grabbing the pan, he shut the burner off, and turned toward Ghost, who was still screaming, and pointing out the window to the back yard.

Crowding up next to Ghost, Steve looked out. It took him a second to see it. He wanted to scream, needed to scream, but he had no breath...it just wouldn't come. As he gasped for air, he tried to turn Ghost away from the window to stop his screaming.

"It's...it's...the coffin," Ghost finally choked out. "It can't be, but it is. Do you see it, too?"

"Yeah, I see it," Steve said, trying to remain calm.

"Why is it there? How...how..." Ghost kept trying to talk.

Steve made Ghost turn away. "Stop looking at it," he said.

"But, it's there...and it's open...and it's empty," Ghost went on and on.

"I know, I know, but we can't let it take over our rational minds. There's some reason it's there, but we're ok. We need to focus. It's not hurting us or anything," Steve said. He closed his eyes and took some much needed deep breaths. "Maybe it's not a good idea for us to go out there."

Ghost pulled out of Steve's grasp, to look out again. They both looked. More details were seared into their brains. The coffin was old, Civil War old...partially wood, partially metal, and the wooden parts were rotting away in places. There were clods of damp, graveyard dirt falling off it, and rotted leaves clung to the top. The lid was opened  about a foot. Worst of all, they could see drag marks in the winter grass, leading from the cemetery, all the way up to the garden fence.

"Steve?" Ghost finally said. "This is one of those hallucinations, right? 'Cause this can't be real, even if we both see it. You know, like the weird earthquake?"

Steve didn't know what to think. "I don't know, it looks real enough." He blinked to clear his vision, and shook his head. "It's still there, and I know I'm awake, so it's not a dream." He sighed. "I can't look any more. I'm gonna pretend it's not even there. You should, too." he said. "Now, I'm going to get dressed, and you finish breakfast. That shit outside is not gonna bother us, ya hear?" He yanked shut the window curtain.

Ghost nodded, and went back to the stove to finish cooking. He started a new skillet of bacon. Steve went back to the bathroom. He tried shaving, but cut his chin, he was shaking so bad.

"Crap, this nonsense has to stop. We can't keep on being scared of everything," he said.

~
Next part coming soon!




Peace, Love, & Writing

Friday, September 11, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 217

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 217
warning...adult content




~
Ghost kept staring at the undulating mist over the grave. It didn't come any closer, like it was tethered down. He got up, and slowly walked toward it.

"Is that you talking to me?" he asked. He sensed that it was. "You're crazy, man. You can't make me do that, uh-uh. There's no way I'm gonna go digging you up."

As he continued to watch, the shape swirled, and writhed, growing brighter. He certainly wasn't bored, now. Maybe they'd answered him, after all. He'd never known any of the spirits out here to be harmful. He just heard them telling their stories over and over. The dead soldiers repeated how they were killed in battle, and why they were buried here.

"You think you can be alive again, or what? Maybe you can go on to the light, if you're opened up? Is that what you want?" He distinctly heard a hissing sound, forming the word Yesssss.

"All of you guys, or just you?" he asked. He thought he heard it say 'just me'. He looked around. No other mists were forming, but he knew the spirits were paying attention to what would happen.

"I don't think I should do it," he said. As soon as the words were out of his mouth, he felt something shove him down from behind. On all fours, now, he was face to face with the crumbling gravestone.
 
"Stop pushing me."

"Dig..."

With his heart pounding, and shaking hands, he did begin to claw at the damp soil over this grave. The dirt came away pretty easy, as it was still a bit wet from the recent snow. His hands were getting muddy, as he kept scraping...the hole getting larger every few minutes. His mind was telling him to stop, that this wasn't right, but his hands would not stop.

Some part of him desperately wanted to stop, and he hollered silently for Steve to come. He tried it out loud, but his voice was weak sounding now, for some strange reason. Seeing Spirit from the corner of his eye, he screamed in his head for the cat to go get Steve. Spirit puffed up and hissed, but then ran back to the house.

Ghost's hands were now bleeding, his nails breaking, but still he clawed at the dirt. He'd gone down about a foot deep and several feet long, trying to reach the coffin below. He was crying now, because he felt possessed, and couldn't stop...and the voice kept pace, saying 'dig...dig...dig'.

~
At the house, Spirit meowed loudly, and scratched at the back screen door, to get Steve's attention. Finally, Steve heard the caterwauling, and came to let the cat in.

"What the hell's wrong with you, cat?" he asked, as he opened the door. Spirit ran back down the backyard path, stopped and meowed again. "You want in or not? Make up your mind," Steve said. But, Spirit kept trying to get Steve to follow him.

He finally understood what the cat was telling him, as he felt a tiny alarm go off in his mind. His stomach dropped, as he felt his heart speed up. "Oh God...Ghost. Something's wrong," he said, and he ran toward the cemetery, with Spirit leading the way.

"Ghost, Ghost, where are you?" he hollered. He kept following the cat, until he did see Ghost, who was down on his knees, furiously flinging dirt, and crying.

"What are you doing? Stop it, right now," Steve yelled. He tried to pull Ghost up from the ground. "C'mon, stop...look at me...what's happening?" He gripped Ghost's arms and pulled as hard as he could. He'd never felt him be so heavy and hard to move. "This isn't right," he said, still trying to pull Ghost up from the hole. Then, one last yank, and they both tumbled backwards. As Ghost lay on his back, panting from exertion, covered in dirt, Steve dragged him away from the half dug grave.

"Get me away from here," Ghost said. "Help me...I have to go back." He was scrambling back to the hole. "No...no...stop me..." he cried.

Steve was confused, but no way was he letting Ghost get any closer. He was able to pick him up, now, and he slung him over his shoulders, staggering away. Ghost was making no sense, saying he had to go back, and begging to get away.

Steve let Ghost down, as soon as they reached their regular spot. "Can you walk to the house, now?"

Ghost nodded, and they made it into the house, where Ghost collapsed onto the kitchen floor.

"What the hell was all that?" Steve asked.

Ghost managed to tell Steve all that had happened.

"Damn you spirits to hell, forever," Steve shouted out the back door. He felt all kinds of 'I told you not to mess with them' thoughts, but held back the words. Ghost was in enough distress, right now.

"Come on, you're getting in the shower," he said, pulling Ghost up, and they headed down the hall to the bathroom. He stripped Ghost's muddy clothes off, and helped him into the warm water. He went in too, being as he was covered in dirt from hauling Ghost around. This seemed to help calm them both. Afterwards, in clean clothes, they wrapped themselves up in blankets on the couch.

Steve was shivering. "Ugh, that graveyard dirt was nasty. It smelled gross, too. Why were you doing that, anyway?" he asked.

Ghost shrugged. "I told ya, I don't know why. I just heard it say I had to dig him up. Someone pushed me down, and made me dig. I couldn't stop." He sighed, wrapping the blanket tighter around him. "I've never been scared of all of them out there before, ya know, but this was different. Maybe it wasn't really one of the old guys."

"Well who the hell was it, then?" Steve asked.

"Maybe I just dreamed it all...or maybe it's the left over demon that did the earthquake that only we felt. I don't know." He tried to remember how it had started.

"It wasn't any dream, Ghost. You really were digging up that coffin out there." Steve nodded, thinking of how creepy it had been. "You smoked a whole joint, right before that?"

"Yeah, and I was half asleep when I heard it tell me what to do. And, I didn't have any control...it made me do it."

Steve frowned. "The whole thing is weird. I don't think the weed would make you do that, but something did. I'm thinking it was the demon, too, 'cause like you said, the dead guys out there never pushed you before."

"I know," Ghost said. "But, why that? Why dig up a coffin? What does that have to do with anything. I don't get it."

"Me either," Steve said, 'but we're not going back out there anymore, understand?"

"Yeah, and I don't want to either, but what if it is just the fake stuff? Like we were talking about before. Are we sure it really happened?"

"Well, as far as I'm concerned, it was real. I think I should call Zach to let him know what's going down over here. They should be on the look-out, too," Steve said. He reached for his phone, and explained it all to Zach and Trevor, and to watch out for weird voices, and even being pushed around.

"Ok," Steve said, when he was off the phone. They'll let us know if anything happens over at their place."

That's good," Ghost said. After a few minute, he asked, "Is it going to come here in the house, tonight?"

"God, I hope not," Steve shuddered. "I'm gonna sit up awhile, though, just in case. You can go on to bed, if you want to."

"I will in a little while. I just want to feel normal first," Ghost said. He got his notebook and markers, then sat back down on the couch.

Steve picked up his book, and tried to concentrate on the words. He didn't have any idea what to do if he heard or saw anything. "What was it that's supposed to keep bad stuff out?" he asked.

"Well, the other time we had that holy water, and salt to circle around us. We could do that, I guess.," Ghost said.

Steve went and got the box of salt from the cabinet, and poured some all around the inside of the house, making sure the door sills were covered. "There, at least we did something," he said.

~
Next part coming soon!



Peace, Love, & Writing

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE ... # 216

TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
# 216
warning...adult content



~
After Jimmy had left for the station house, Terry and Kinsey started to clean up the glass shards left on the floor. "Here, I'll help with the windows," Terry said. Kinsey got out the broom and dustpan, and began sweeping. Terry went downstairs to find some cardboard boxes that beer had been delivered in. He cut some up to fit in the broken window.

"Guess that will do for now," Kinsey said, shaking his head. "I'll call the repair shop in the morning for another window pane to be put in."

"Ok then, I'm heading home," Terry said. "I'll catch up with you tomorrow."

"Yeah, I'm turning in, too," Kinsey said, as he went downstairs with Terry. He locked the back door, then headed back up to his apartment. First, he called Zach to let him know what had happened, and let him know he was staying at home now. Next, he fixed himself a snack, then went to bed. It seemed strange to try to sleep, in the late afternoon, but he was still sick and exhausted. Rest seemed the best medicine right now.

Jimmy got back to the police station, and filed his report of the crime, and put the brick and note into the evidence room. After more paperwork, he sent out an APB for every police headquarters from Missing Mile to the west coast. Someone would spot Maxy sooner or later.

~
Steve and Ghost had slept for several hours. Waking that late afternoon, they were hungry, so worked together in the kitchen to fix a meal.

"Something happened," Ghost said. "I think it's over at Kinsey's"

Steve stopped chopping onions..."What do you mean?"

Ghost shrugged. "I'm not sure, but it wasn't good. When Terry got to the club, he found something.  They all know about it, now...Terry, and Jimmy, and Kinsey. Maybe you could call them?" he asked.

"Yeah, ok...I will after we eat," Steve said. "If it was really important, they would have called us."

He finished up cooking their supper of tacos, and they both sat down to eat. Spirit sat on the table, begging for slivers of cheese, which Ghost tossed to him now and again.

"Hey, Steve, what's gonna happen next?"

"Next? Like when we finish eating, or farther down the road?" Steve asked.

Ghost looked puzzled. "What's down the road? Are we going somewhere?"

"No...I just wanted to find out what you meant," Steve said. "What we'll be doing next, like tonight, or later on...next year?" he laughed, since it was almost next year, already.

"Oh...well, later I guess," Ghost said. "I mean, there isn't a show coming up, and we aren't having a party, and we already did our CD and book...so, now what?"

"Good question," Steve said. "I haven't really thought of it much...just about Linda and her kids coming to live here. That will be so cool."

"Yeah, that's right...when?"

"She said after New Year's she'd get things going. She'll probably have to see if Lisa will come, too. Then, there is the kid's school...maybe sell the house. It'll take awhile before she can come," Steve said. "Did you have something in mind you wanted to do, like a vacation, or work on another CD?"

"No, I didn't know anything," Ghost said. "But, I think we'll be bored, so I want something to do, ya know." He looked bored already.

Steve eyed him. "Bored already? Do you have to be doing something fantastic all the time?"

Ghost nodded, "Yeah, or I'm bored."

Steve laughed, "Well, when you think of something, let me know, 'cause doing nothing sounds good to me."

"But, I'm so tired of doing nothing," Ghost whined. He got up and looked out the back door. "I don't like this part of the days. It's like it's cold, then warm, then boring, because Christmas is over."

"Ya want to go for a drive, or go shopping?"

"No, nothing sounds good or fun," Ghost said.

"Well, Dude, I'm gonna go relax...maybe read, or take a nap. You're on your own...figure it out," Steve said. He went to the living room, got his book, and stretched out on the couch.

Ghost sighed. "I'm going to the graveyard. Maybe the guys will have a suggestion."

"Ok, y'all have fun out there," Steve said.

Ghost put on his old Army jacket, and striped scarf, just in case it got cold, then went out the back door. Trudging through the back yard, he watched Spirit bound ahead of him. Wherever the cat stopped, that's where he would stop, too. Spirit was used to their favorite spot, so he did stop there. He leapt upon the crooked headstone, looked at Ghost, and meowed.

"Ya sure this is the place?" Ghost asked. He stroked Spirit's soft fur, then sat down, leaning back against the cold granite marker. He knew the stories of all the Civil War dead out here...heard them talking all the time. This time maybe they'd say something different if he asked them a question.

To get in a better frame of mind, he pulled out the tin box he and Steve had hidden back behind the marker. It held a candle, matches, rolling papers, and weed. He took a few minutes to roll up a joint. He'd never had a whole one to himself, before...having always shared with Steve, but now...why not? He lit up.

Immediately, he could tell that this was some of Terry's good stuff. He let the drug take over for awhile, just relaxing, and thinking of nothing special. As his mind drifted, he giggled at the thought, that here he was, still doing nothing, but feeling ok with it. He began talking out loud to himself about all they'd been through, lately. It had been a lot.

"We did our book, and CD...and we had a big show...that was fun."  He smiled, remembering it. "And, Linda was here, and we were so nervous to see her, but she's real nice. Then, there was that crap with Maxy and the cameras...God, I hope I never see him again." He frowned, then shook it off, wanting to talk only about good times. "

"Steve liked the present I gave him...that Thunder-bird car is his baby. And, I love my ring." He stopped and looked at it. He loved shiny things, and never wanted to take it off.  The smoke was finished, so he drifted some more. Half awake, half asleep, he asked the spirits what he should do next...not really expecting an answer.

Then, he sensed a strange message. He couldn't tell if it was in his head, or out loud, that the spirit talked. "Oh, hell no!" he said out loud, as he sat up and looked around. "Who said that? That's crazy. I'm not that bored," he said, looking out into the shadows of the graveyard. But, the message kept pestering him. He heard over and over..."Dig us up...set us free." He'd never heard anything like that, before, and it spooked him.

"Stop saying that," he said, but then, he'd think...what if I did do it? Would it really set their spirits free...for real? He rolled over to look further into the cemetery, looking for any apparitions. His eyes sharpened, as he focused on a grave, way back in the shadows of the pine trees. A misty form was taking shape.

~
Next part coming soon!


Peace, Love, & Writing