TWO SOUL: INTO THE FIRE
Melody kept talking about the CD that Steve and Ghost had made, until Ghost interrupted her.
"We wrote a book, too." he said.
"What?" Melody screeched. Her head turned back and forth between Ghost and Steve.
"Oh, Lord, here we go," Steve said. "Go on, Ghost...tell her."
Grinning, Ghost did. Steve smiled and shook his head. He knew this book of theirs was Ghost's pride and joy, his idea, and his pictures, and his talking to the graveyard spirits. He was, himself, very proud of Ghost, and the book.
"Ok, yeah, we wrote it together," Ghost said. "We did, we both did, Steve."
"Well, mostly you did. I just drove the car, and only freaked out a few times...not even a few, more like a couple, or just once. Yeah, that was all," Steve said.
Ghost rolled his eyes. "Mmm-hmm, I remember more than that, Steve."
"Shut up. Just tell her."
"Ok, well we went to all these old graveyards..." he began.
"Graveyards?" Melody asked. "Why there, they're creepy."
Ghost gave her a look. "Why there? 'Cause that's what I do. I thought you knew I talk to the spirits."
"Talk to spirits? Are you teasing me?" Melody asked.
"No, why would I do that," Ghost asked, shaking his head. "You said you did too, or at least know what people are thinking." He looked confused. "Is that true? I feel like it is."
"Uh, yeah, I can sometimes, if I try real hard, but I never seen a ghost. Oh, well, except you," Melody said, and laughed.
Ghost sighed. "Oh, well, I might could help you...if you want me to," he said.
Melody shrugged. "I don't know, are they scary? Do they talk back? Can you see them?"
"Yeah, all the time. I have to try and block it out, or I'd see and hear them everywhere, all the time," Ghost said.
"That's amazing. Yeah, maybe you can show me how," she said.
"Go on, Ghost, get on with the story," Steve said.
"Oh, ok, well we went on a road trip last summer, to all the graveyards, and I talked to them, and I took pictures, and Steve took some, and I wrote where we were, and Steve wrote the days, and then we had a book made, over in Raleigh, and we sold them all, too," Ghost said in a rush, then stopped to take a breath.
"That's the coolest thing I ever heard," Melody said.
Ghost grinned, again. "I know. We kept a couple, so you can see it now, when we get home." He yawned, and stretched his arms out. "I need a nap. My eyes won't stay open, Steve."
"So close 'em and go to sleep. I'm gonna keep going until Memphis," Steve said. He turned on the radio, and fiddled with the tuner, until he found an oldies station.
Ghost leaned his head back, closing his eyes. He tried to get comfortable by putting his feet on the dashboard. Melody tried different ways of getting herself situated, and ended up with her head on Ghost's shoulder. In a matter of minutes, both were asleep.
Steve glanced over at them. So weird...so alike...
As he drove, Steve let his mind wander. The past few weeks, the road trip, his sister, now Ghost's sister, getting back home...he felt tired...more than tired...weary. Then he thought of that word. It was a good word, and he knew Ghost would like it. He tried to imagine what Missing Mile, and their friends, would look like to Melody. It would be so good to be home, again. He yawned and shook his head to try and keep awake. "Have to make it to Memphis before we can stop," he told himself. It wasn't much farther...the last road sign said 60 miles, but it was starting to get dark, now.
He turned on the lights. The closer they got to the big city, the more traffic they encountered. Still, his eyes wanted to close. He actually thought he might have nodded off for a second, the way he suddenly jerked awake. Thank God he was still on the road, and had not gone off the edge. He saw that Ghost was still asleep, but he really needed somebody to talk to, to help him stay awake.
"Ghost...wake up," he said, and reached across Melody to shake Ghost's arm. "Dude, wake up," he said louder.
"What, why you yelling," Ghost asked, as he was startled awake. "Are we home? I dreamed we were in our driveway," he said.
"No, just wake up. Talk or something, to keep me awake. We got a few more miles to go, before we can get a motel, in Memphis," Steve said.
"Ok, what'cha wanna talk about?"
"I don't care, just talk to me."
"Um...ok..." Ghost thought a minute. "Are we gonna get something to eat, when we stop? I'm hungry."
"Yeah, I plan on it, and I'm sure Linda and the kids are hungry, too," Steve said.
"I'm tired of diner and fast food, Steve. I want to camp out and cook on a campfire," Ghost said.
"You're kidding, right," Steve said, and laughed. "You'd rather sleep in a tent, and a sleeping bag, than a motel bed, and have a shower, and tv?"
"Yeah, but it would have to be by ourselves. No more motorcycle gangs."
"So, where are we going to find a place like that? We're coming into a big city, not the woods."
"I don't know, Steve," Ghost said, shrugging. "You asked me, so that's my suggestion."
"I want to camp out, too. I never have," Melody said, as she woke up.
"Oh, great, both of you are gonna pester me until I agree. I'm out voted," Steve said. "Tell ya what, let's find somewhere to stop. I need gas, anyway, and we'll see what Linda says." He glanced in the rear view mirror, to make sure she was still following. Then, slowing down, he signaled at the exit off the highway.
The far out-skirts of Memphis had several convenience stores, and a truck stop along the way. Stopping at one of the stores, Steve got out and started pumping gas. Linda pulled in, and did the same.
"Ya want to hear something crazy?" Steve asked. "Ghost and Melody want to camp out tonight. What do ya think about that?"
"Really? That's funny," Linda said. "I had the same thought. It just came to me a little bit ago, out of the blue. I mean, why not? It would save us some money. These restaurants are getting expensive."
Steve was surprised. "You'd go for it, then?" he asked.
"Sure, why not. We can ask inside where a campground is. I'm sure there's one around somewhere, and we can get some hot dogs, and marshmallows to cook." She was smiling at the thought.
"Hmm...oh, man...I know what this is," Steve said. "It's manipulation. It was Ghost...he got in your head and sent you a message, that's what happened."
"Oh, I'll bet you're right," Linda said. "It was strange how all of a sudden I'm thinking it would be fun to camp out. But, I do actually like the idea. Let's do it."
Steve sighed, "Fine, we'll camp out. "I'll go inside, get some food, and ask for directions." He passed by the U-Haul on his way into the store.
"Hey, Ghost...you worked your magic on Linda. We're camping out." Steve said.
Next part coming soon!
Peace, Love, & Writing