Wednesday, March 30, 2016


# 300 content

Steve opened another can of beer, as he drove the five miles home. Pulling up on the graveled driveway, he cut the engine of his T-bird, and just sat there a few minutes. Dew was already forming on the grassy areas by the house, with a slight fog twining around the base of the pine trees. They'd left no lights on in the house, when they'd left earlier that afternoon, so that now, looking at the darkened little cabin, seemed a bit eerie.

Only unseen crickets and frogs could be heard, somewhere out in the woods. Steve had the feeling that something was watching him. "I've been around Ghost too long, thinking spooks are everywhere, watching us while we sleep...we'd never know..." He shivered, as a sudden chill overtook him. It seemed way too quiet...even the air felt heavy with foreboding.

Shaking his head of this line of thought, he got out of the car, slamming the door, hoping maybe the noise would scare away any lurkers out there among the trees. Stepping on the sagging porch steps, he pulled open the old screen door, hearing it's familiar squeak. Inside he flicked on the table lamp, chasing away the gloom, in the house.

Spirit came out of the bedroom, to rub against his legs. Bending down, Steve patted the cat's head. "Hey, hungry?" Spirit walked to the front door, sniffing the night air. He looked back and meowed. Steve knew immediately what the cat was asking...'where's Ghost?'.

"Aww, kitty, Ghost didn't come home tonight. He'll be back later on, though." He went into the kitchen to get food for Spirit. "Here ya go," he said, setting the dish down in the living room by the couch. He hefted the 30-pack of beer up onto the coffee table, and proceeded to crack open one after the other.

After a while, he headed off down the hall to the bathroom, only staggering a little bit, but bumping into the little hall table, he knocked off one of Ghost's geodes. It rolled a bit back and forth, as he tried to focus on it. "Shit," Steve said aloud. From the corner of his eye, though, he thought he saw a shadowy form slither into Ghost's bedroom.

"What the hell? Ghost?" He frowned, at the image he thought he saw, but couldn't wait to use the bathroom any longer. He was getting jumpy, now, all alone here in the house, hallucinating things. He finished up, then peeped into Ghost's room, just to check things out. He admitted to himself, that he was a bit scared of what he'd find. Standing at the threshold, he took note of the glowing stars on the ceiling, and the faint smell of dried roses, but saw no weird shadows. Shaking his head, he went back to the couch.

The voices in his head had been quieted somewhat, but now they returned, worse than before. Closing his eyes, he muttered, "What have I done...what have I done?" And then, he cried.

After a while, he scraped his arm across his face, wiping away his tears. He tried to get his thoughts in order, trying to make sense of all that had happened. A hand reached out for another can of beer, and in a moment of clarity, he was surprised to find it was his own, bringing beer after beer to his mouth to guzzle down, one by one. It seemed unattached to him.  He could now feel a darkness creeping into his field of vision, as his head swam with dizziness. Falling to his side, on the couch, he lay there, letting the darkness take over. Then the dreams began.

Just as before, he could see images flashing one after another. Images of his life, of Ghost, of everything good and everything bad, stopping only for a bit longer look at certain times. He felt again, the deep depression of the years without Ghost, and how he'd been on the verge of ending it all, when Ghost came back that night.

He startled awake, a bright flash of lightning struck close by, it's silvered electricity, splitting a nearby tree. The following crash of thunder, shook the house...but he didn't care anymore. He only felt the same crushing despair as on that night so long ago. Abruptly sitting up, he shouted, "No! It can't happen again."

He rolled himself off the couch, and onto all fours. Then, bracing his hands on the coffee table, heaved himself up. He almost blacked out again, but the lightning flashed just then, jump starting his heart to a pounding rhythm.

"Why are you tormenting me?" he shouted at the thunder.

Spirit hissed, and ran for cover under the bed in Ghost's room.

"God, if you're punishing me, go ahead. I don't care...I deserve it. I'm a horrible person. I took a vow that I'd never hurt Ghost, again, but I have. I know it, you know strike me with your lightning. Do it now...just do it. Just bring Ghost back to me one more time. I have to tell him I didn't mean it. I don't want him to go away." He was sobbing now, staring up toward the ceiling. "I love him. Is that so it? It can't be. You put our souls together before, so many times; there has to be a reason why. Don't let this be the last time...please," he begged.

He'd been pacing as best he could around the living room. The electricity had been knocked out with the storm, leaving the house in darkness, again. He tripped over the empty beer cans on the floor where he'd tossed them, falling to his knees, getting back up. Hail now began hitting the roof, and rain was being blown inside through the screen door. Another crack of thunder and lightning resulted in another pine tree across the way to be struck, with sparks flying through the wind.

"This is Armageddon...or hell...I think I'm in hell..."

A sudden thought hit him. "Where is Ghost? Is he ok? Is he here in hell with him?" He had to find him, and then remembered his phone. Patting hs jeans pockets, he felt it, and scrabbled it out. Trying to focus on the back-lit numbers, he punched the speed-dial for Terry. Then, just as Terry answered, he stumbled again, over a beer can, falling hard.

"Ow," he yelled, then he couldn't help it...he began crying...loud, heart-wrenching wails."

Next part coming soon!

 Peace, Love, & Writing

Sunday, March 27, 2016


# 299 content

Linda led Steve back over to where Ghost and Melody were sitting, there on the sandy beach.

"We're going home, now," Linda said. "Melody, you'll ride back with Steve, and Ghost, you'll ride with me and the kids. We are all too tired to be arguing out here, tonight, but in the morning, we'll try and work this all out, together. Let's go." She marched back to the van, followed by the others.

Steve wouldn't even look at Ghost, and kept his distance. As he got into his car, he slammed the door, waiting for Melody to get in, then sped off. They never said a word the whole way back.  Linda followed him down the highway toward Missing Mile. They made it back to Kinsey's bar, where Steve dropped Melody off at the back door, then spun gravel, as he left toward his and Ghost's house.

Linda and Melody woke the kids up, to go inside to their beds. Ghost just sat on the back porch of the club, looking down at the pavement. When the kids were settled, Linda took Melody aside.

"He's still down there, isn't he?" she asked. Melody nodded.

"Go see if you can talk to him. Tell him he should come in, now."

Melody frowned. "But, what do I even say to him. I mean, Steve is being ridiculous. He's your brother and all, but damn, he's so mean."

Linda gritted her teeth at that remark, then let it go. This time she agreed with Melody. "I know, and he's not usually like this. Something must have made him snap this time. We'll try to sort it all out tomorrow. Just right now, go talk to Ghost, please." She heaved a sigh.

"Ok, and I'm sorry I said that," Melody said.

"It's ok," Linda said. "We have to hang in there, and keep it together, for them."

Melody went downstairs to find Ghost. Coming out the back door, she then sat down by him, just to be there for him. For a few minutes she watched, as he piled up little pieces of gravel, then knocked them down. She could tell that his wrist was still hurting, though. Every now and then, she could hear him sniffle.

"Why don't you come on inside?" she asked. "There's plenty of places to sleep tonight."

He shook his head, then took a handful of the little rocks, throwing them, watching them ping off the front of the van, as they hit.

"It's the omen," Ghost said. "I told him it was a bad one, but he never believes me. It took us by surprise out there, coming on real sudden like that. He has to deal with it, and it might take awhile. He'll be will go away."

"Will you be ok," Melody asked.

Ghost sighed. "Yeah...I ain't going no where. It just hurts when he says things like that to me. But, Melody...I didn't mind control him. I didn't..."

She nodded. "I believe you. I don't understand it, but I've come to know that you don't lie. Steve knows that, too, deep down."

"I know," Ghost said.

They sat there a few more minutes, each lost in their own thoughts. Then Melody asked, "So, how do you fix it...this omen thing?"

"Oh, well...I could try some stuff, but he'd have to let me, and right now he won't even look at me. He mostly don't even believe in any of this, anyway, like I do. Well, except for the vampires and demons...he knows they're real, but all the things our grandmother taught me...the spells, and potions, and magic charms...he don't like to even think about them."

Melody thought for a minute. "So what you're saying is, until he is ready to listen to you, he'll be...well, mean to everybody?"

Ghost shrugged. "I guess so. He never had to really think about omens and signs very much before."

"Ok, well, we're all talking it out in the morning. He said he'd be here, so we'll just wait until then," Melody said. "You ready to come in?"

Nodding, Ghost got up off the porch, and Melody opened the door, waiting for him. He paused for a moment, staring up into the night sky. Melody's heart lurched, as she saw how sad he looked.

"Come on, let's get you a blanket. You want to stay in my room?"

"Naw, I'll be in the back room; it'll be fine, there's a big couch in there," Ghost said.

"Ok, try to get some rest," Melody said, as she gave him a hug.

As Steve had sped off, his mind was in turmoil. His thoughts and emotions were spinning out of control, and he knew it, but was unable to get a handle on it. He drove farther down the main street, noticing the convenience store was still open. It felt like the middle of the night already, but checking his watch, he noticed it wasn't even midnight, yet. On impulse, he pulled into the little store's parking lot. He went in, directly to the back wall of cooler shelves. Grabbing a 30-pack of beer, he then paid for it and left. Out on the highway, he cracked open a can, wanting at this point, only to drown out the voices in his head, telling him he was being an asshole.

"Shut the hell up," he yelled, as he chucked the now empty can out the window.


Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Friday, March 25, 2016


# 298 content

Steve felt himself scooting backwards on the sand, away from Ghost, but didn't know how he was doing it. He didn't know how he could move at all. How could he be afraid of Ghost? Why was Ghost doing this to him?

He heard a muffled scream...where was that coming from?

"Steve, Steve...wake up," Ghost said. He pinched Steve's arm, hard. It made Steve scream. "Wake up," Ghost yelled, right up in Steve's face. Steve felt Ghost's hot breath on him, and dared to open his eyes, again. Ghost's long hair was hanging in his face, tickling his cheeks. He blinked, trying to clear his eyes.


"Wake fainted," Ghost yelled, and shook Steve's shoulders.

"What? did something to me...stay away," Steve said, cringing.

Ghost sat back, "Huh? What are you talking about?"

Steve pushed himself up on his elbows. Looking closer at Ghost, he saw that he looked normal now, not with the weird eyes from before. "You made me see things," he said. "Nothing was normal, and you were mean and scary."

"Why would I..." Ghost began, but Steve interrupted him.

"You mind controlled me. You gave me a nightmare of every bad thing I ever did, and you were laughing about it. I can't explain it, just don't do it again, please Ghost, don't do it again."

By this time Linda and Melody had ran over to see why Steve was screaming. Out of breath, Linda said, "What's the matter? Are you hurt?"

Ghost looked at her, then back to Steve. "Yeah, we're ok. I think Steve fainted, and he had a nightmare, or something."

Steve tried sitting up, but was still groggy. "That was no nightmare. That was were doing things in my head."

"Calm down, Steve," Linda said. "We don't know what you're talking about. Ghost said you fainted, and we heard you scream. What were you dreaming about?"

Steve pointed to Ghost. "Ask him, he did it. He made me see things...bad thing."

Ghost reached over to touch Steve's arm, to reassure him, to let him know he didn't manipulate his mind.

"Stay away from me," Steve said, as he dodged Ghost's hand. "You're the craziest son-of-a-bitch I ever knew. I don't know why I ever saved you in the first place. I had a feeling, way back then, that nothing good would come of it. Now, it's finally here," Steve was breathing hard, and now narrowed his eyes. "You've held me prisoner of your damn fantasy world long enough. I'm done with it. I'm done with you. Go away...go away...I'm commanding you, devil's gone."

"Steve...Steve..." Linda tried to get his attention, to break his train of thought. "Come here. Come over here with me," she said. Grabbing Steve's hands, she pulled him up, and led him away down the beach.

"I mean it, Linda. I'm done. I've had enough. Get him away from me...from me...from me..." He was sobbing now. Linda held onto him, letting him cry it out.

Melody sat down in the sand, next to Ghost. "What the hell was he going on about?" she asked. "Why was he saying those mean things?"

Ghost was stunned speechless, at Steve's outburst.

"Ghost, answer me," Melody said.

He looked up in confusion. "I...uh...I don't know. He thinks I controlled his dream? He thinks I put bad things in his head? I don't know why. I didn't do any of that," Ghost said. After a few seconds, he looked Melody in the eyes, "I didn't do that to Steve, but something did. Something had ahold of him...something bad. That must be the omen, you remember, from before?, Steve thinks he hates me. I know he doesn't, but right now, he does." He took Melody's hands. "We have to get it off of him."

"Shut up over there. Quit talking about me," Steve yelled.

"What can we do, Ghost?" Melody asked. "It's so late, and we're not even home, and Steve has to drive us back." She thought for a minute. "I guess I could drive his car back. I don't know what to think, what to do. Besides, he really does hate me, and he wouldn't let me drive his car, anyway."

"What happened out here, Steve?" Linda asked. "What were y'all talking about right before all this yelling started? Do you remember?"

Steve nodded. "Hell, yeah I remember. I told Ghost it was over with us...for real...for good. Then he started doing something to my head. He didn't want to hear what I said, and he made it worse, and he knew it, and wouldn't stop. It wasn't a dream, Linda, it wasn't."

"Ok, so why on Earth would you break up with Ghost?" Linda asked. "You love him, Steve. It's not right." She stopped to take a deep breath. "You didn't mean it, did you?"

"Yeah, 'cause I know I'm no good for him. I make things worse. He could have been happy all these years, but I kept him for myself, and I did bad things, and I just now figured it out. So yeah, it's for the best." He rubbed his face. "But, now he's gone all crazy about it. It's all messed up. I think it's the other way around, now. He made me  stay with his mind powers," Steve said.

Linda was so confused. he knew they all were, at this point. "Ok, so we all need to calm down, and talk it now. You need to quit being..." she stopped. She didn't want to say what she was thinking, which was that Steve was being ridiculous about the whole thing.

"Steve, you've done the best you can. I know you never meant for Ghost to be hurt, or you either, but you both have been. Now, it's time to put it right. But, listen to me...we are exhausted. We are away from home, and we have to get back. The kids might wake up, with all this noise. We have to call a truce, or something. Do you understand?"

"I'm not taking him home with me, way...not yet," he said, shaking his head.

"Fine, then he can ride with me, but we are not just leaving him here. He can stay with us at Kinsey's, but in the morning, it has to be dealt with."

"Yeah, sure, whatever..." Steve said.

"Ok, then, let me go tell them how it's going to be, and then let's go home," Linda said.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Wednesday, March 23, 2016


# 297 content

Steve led Ghost down to the water's edge. They walked a few minutes, moving back as the tide brought the waves farther up onto the sand. Sighing, Steve stopped to sit awhile, and they both watched the moon rise above the horizon, making the darkness of the water sparkle.

Sighing again, Steve asked, "Are you afraid of me?"

Ghost hesitated for just a second, then slowly shook his head. "No..." he whispered.

Steve barely heard the word over the rhythmic sounds of the waves, but his heart skipped a beat. He knew Ghost was lying. Putting his fingers to his forehead, he closed his eyes. "Look at what I've done. I've hurt you more times than I can count, and now you are having to lie to me, and yourself, and I know that is something you just don't do. It's my fault, I know that. I'm to blame for everything. Me, and my god damn temper...and God knows, I've tried. I've tried, Ghost. I'll never stop trying to get it under control, to make things better."

Shaking his head, and swallowing hard, he continued. "I'm not making any excuses, and I don't want you to make any for me, either. There is nothing good about what I've done. I'm sorry, so sorry for all of the pain I've caused you."

Ghost started to say something, but Steve stopped him. "No...wait...I wish you would get angry at me...hate me...tell me to fuck off, and mean it...but, that's not you. I'm no good for you, Ghost. I've messed up your life too many times. I should have never tried to keep a caged up bird or something, making it seem like you're a prisoner, only doing what I wanted for you to do. I'm ashamed at how many times I've begged you to love me, when you could have gone anywhere, done anything, and had the kind of life you deserved...not full of pain."

Ghost could feel Steve's anguish. He knew Steve was hurting inside, as much as he himself was. Reaching for Steve, he brought him close, sobbing into his hair. ...the truth hurts, it hurts so bad...

"Don't, Ghost. Don't try to make me feel better. I don't want to feel better, when I've made you miserable all this time. I know that now. I tried to stop hurting you...I tried to stop thinking it, hoping it would go away, but it hasn't, and I haven't. Look at what I did, just tonight."

Ghost raised up his head. "Steve, stop hating yourself. It doesn't matter, I told you before."

"It does matter. It has to stop. I have to stop, and I know you won' I have to be the call it stop myself from hurting hurting you this one last time. It has to be over...we have to be over. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I feel I won't ever change enough before something even worse happens."

Ghost looked into Steve's eyes, really looked. There was just enough moonlight to see the tears on Steve's face, his dark eyes full of pain. Brushing away the tears with his fingers, putting the drops into his mouth, he said, "You are part of me, Steve, you always have been. I would have no life, no reason to live, without you...even then, even now, forever more."

Ghost continued to stare into Steve's eyes, holding his gaze steady. "You won't ever be rid of me, Steve. I've seen to that, a long, long, time ago. You can try, you can hurt me, you can kill me again, it does not matter. We are bonded, we are blood, we are...we are..."

Steve was getting a strange vibe from Ghost. His thoughts of leaving were being pushed right out of his mind. The thoughts were fading away. While he was trying to recapture them, because he'd said them out loud, and they were important, he was also thinking, "Ghost is in a trance...he's acting weird...he's controlling my mind, right now..."

It was such a strange feeling, and he was powerless to stop it. "Maybe Ghost put a spell on me, or a curse. Maybe that curse from long ago, or maybe a new one. He's not afraid of me...uh-uh...but, I'm afraid of him..." He'd never thought about it like that, before. It was totally opposite...he'd never had any control over Ghost, but he was, and had been controlled by be Ghost's puppet, his whimsy, to be manipulated...even the bad stuff. Ghost was making a fantasy of his dreams come to be real life. This was too much to think about. He didn't understand it at all. He just wanted to make it stop.

His heart pounding, he came to this crazy conclusion. "This is the most unreal thought I've ever had...this is not my thinking at all, it is Ghost's. Why is he making me think crazy things?" He shook his head, trying to clear it of the whirling thoughts. Images were flashing non-stop, faster and faster, one after the other...and still, Ghost stared into his eyes.

"How can I have thoughts about my thoughts, at the same time... and his, too. What the hell is happening?" He closed his eyes; he had to break away from Ghost's intense gaze. "I'm the crazy one," he said. "I have been all along, just like Melody said. She knew...she knew..." He took a shuddery breath. "Ghost?" he breathed out. "Am I dying? Is this what if feels like...everything I ever did keeps flashing in my head, like a fast forward movie, or something."

He opened his eyes, just for a second, to see if Ghost was still staring at him. He was...and he was grinning his crooked grin. "Make it stop, please, Ghost, make it stop." Steve's teeth were chattering, now, but he felt waves of heat rushing into his face, at the same time.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Sunday, March 20, 2016


# 296 content

"That's enough, Steve," Linda said. "Calm down. Nobody's up in y'all's business. Melody was just concerned, that's all. I asked her to find y'all, and she hasn't been around us long enough to know how you and Ghost deal with things. She didn't mean to tick you off, but you jumped on her pretty hard, there."

"Bullshit..." Steve said. "She called me a liar, and she had to be put in her place. I guess she'd call what we're doing now a fight, too. Ya think? I wouldn't call this a fight, and neither was that out yonder."

"Well, I think you should apologize to her," Linda said.

"Oh, hell no," Steve said.

Steve and Linda had been arguing so loud, they hadn't noticed that Ghost had gone to the van to see about Melody. She hadn't gotten in and disturbed the kids, but was standing on the far side. Ghost could see she was crying. He went to her and gave her a hug.

"How can you stand him?" Melody cried into Ghost's shoulder. "He's the crazy one around here, not you. He's so loud, and rude, and domineering." She sniffled, and wiped her eyes.

Ghost started to say something to ease her distress, but before he could, she said, "Don't try to defend him. You know it's true. I don't know why you let him treat you bad, and then forgive him. I don't know y'all's whole story, but I can imagine it hasn't been all lovey-dovey all these years. Am I right? Huh?" She stared into Ghost's eyes, waiting for confirmation.

Ghost nodded. "No, it hasn't been, but nobody can be perfect. Everyone has arguments and misunderstandings. It's best to talk and clear the air. That's what we do, and it's not having a fight."

"So what do you call it, then, when he hurts now. I can see you're holding your arm funny. He hurt you, didn't he?" Melody asked.

Ghost looked down at his swollen wrist. It was stiff and throbbing, now. " might be broken, but he didn't..."

"Stop...just stop making excuses for him. He's an abuser, and he's hurt you, and will again. You know that, don't you? Don't you?"

Ghost nodded. "But, I can't stop loving him," he said, as tears ran down his face.

"Oh, Ghost," Melody said, softly, as she drew him to her. "I know, I know you love him. I'm sorry I'm in such a mood tonight. I don't mean to upset you." They were quiet for a minute.

"He's had help for it...his anger...and, it's better now, a lot better," Ghost said.

"That's good," Melody said. "I won't butt into y'all's business anymore...well, I'll try not to, anyway. I just can't stand a bully."

Ghost sucked in his breath, as he looked up at Melody. "Steve's not. He saved me from them. That's why...well, not just that, but one of the reasons I love him. We've been together so many times, and this time it'll work...I know it will."

Melody nodded. "I hope so," she said, but really had no idea what he was talking about, as they'd not yet told her the whole story.

There was a noise coming from the other side of the van. They looked over, to see Steve standing there. Clearing his throat, he said, "Melody, I'm sorry for yelling at you, and being mean. I didn't mean to cause trouble, ok?"

Melody narrowed her eyes. "Ghost explained it to me. I don't want to be enemies, Steve. We both love Ghost, and our arguing puts him right in the  middle. I hate that...and I don't want to just forget it, though. I have to say it. I know you hurt Ghost out there...his wrist may be broken. That's not acceptable, Steve He said you've been getting help, and that's good. But, do you ever apologize to Ghost, after you hurt him? Or does he just forgive you, and that's the end of it?" She stared hard at Steve.

"Ghost knows I don't mean it...right, Ghost?" He looked over at him.

Ghost shrugged. "You do mean it when you're doing it. Then you don't."

Steve was using all the restraint he could, not to lash out at Melody again, for starting this whole thing. He was clenching his fists, and wanted so bad to tell her again to stay out of it.

"Ghost, I'm sorry for hurting you. I know it sounds lame, at this point, but I do mean it." He reached out for Ghost's hand. "Come here, I need to talk to you." Ghost took his hand, and they walked away from the van.

Melody shook her head, as she watched them walk away. "Bite your tongue, girl," she told herself. "It does no good to point out the obvious to those two." She went back to find Linda.

"Get anything settled over there?" Linda asked.

"Not really. I plan on keeping my mouth shut from now on, though. I hate what I'm seeing happen." She bit at her bottom lip. "I don't know if you see it, or not, but I'm done trying to bring it up," Melody said.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Friday, March 18, 2016


# 295 content

Breathing hard, Steve glared down at Ghost. He was as angry as he'd ever been at him, now, thinking he'd been tricked, been played. He continued yelling, even as a rational thought zinged through his mind...this is actually working...Ghost is rallying...he's coming around...

He reached down, grabbed Ghost's wrist again, and yanked him upright, but as he did, they both heard a crack. Ghost cried out from the pain.

"Fuck, now look what you made me do. You gonna cry about that, too? Stand up here...don't you dare flake out on me." Steve said. For some reason, he felt himself wanting Ghost in the worst way. He realized how sick that made him, but he didn't care. He'd gone too far to turn back. Entwining his fingers into Ghost's long hair, he pulled him close into his chest, then yanked hard, so Ghost's head was thrown back, exposing his throat. He was surprised that Ghost didn't struggle from his grip, so he kissed him, with passion fueled by his anger.

Ghost met him with his own love/hate of this kind of arousal. He felt it too, and ignoring the pain in his right hand, he latched onto Steve's hair, pulling him in for more. His lust for Steve was all he could think of, now. He had to have him.

They again sank down into the soft sand, panting each other's name, as they tore off their clothes. The sky had now grown dark, concealing them from any prying eyes. Only the stars above watched them consummate their love for each other that night.

Melody kept walking slowly down the beach, looking for any sign of Steve and Ghost. The sun had already disappeared behind the dunes to the west, leaving only a few streaks of pink reflecting on the high clouds. Her eyes were adjusting to the growing darkness, little by little. The sound of the lapping waves, washing rhythmically ashore, was the only sound.

"I'm definitely a beach person," she thought. "Ghost may be from the mountains, but give me the ocean, any time."

Getting back to what she was supposed to be doing, she continued walking down the shore. She wasn't afraid of getting lost, in the dark; she knew she could just turn around, follow the shore in the other direction back to their camping spot. Still looking ahead, she figured she should be getting close to finding them, and after another few minutes, she stopped, listening.

"Wait a minute...was that them?" she muttered. She walked faster toward the sound. "Yes, I can hear Steve...wait...he's yelling about something..." She went closer. "No, he fighting with Ghost," she said, when she heard Ghost cry out. "Oh, my God, what should I do?"

She ran forward a little ways, then turned back the other way, thinking she had to go get Linda. "No, I have to make them stop," she said, turning around again. She felt crazy, going back and forth, so finally began running back to get Linda, or at least tell her what was going on. She didn't hear any more yelling from Steve, at least.

Coming upon the campsite, she was out of breath, so just motioned for Linda to wait a second.

"What is it?" Linda asked. "Did you find them?"

"Yeah, they're way off down the beach, and they were fighting," she managed to say. "Steve was yelling, and then I heard Ghost holler like he was hurt, then I didn't hear any more." Melody said, then took a second to get her breath. "I still didn't see them, I just heard them, so I ran back here. What should we do?" She sat on the sand then, her legs shaking, and her heart still pounding

"Here," Linda said, handing her a bottle of water. "It was quiet when you left?"

"Yeah, is that a good sign? Should I have tried to make them stop?"

"No, better that you came back. We'll just wait for them," Linda said, looking out toward the water. "They know where we are, and it probably wasn't anything serious, at least I hope not. I swear...those's not the first time they've gotten into it with each other, and I doubt it'll be the last. They're loud, but make up pretty fast, when it's over."

"Ok, but it scared me," Melody said. She looked around. "Where's Stevie and Mandy?"

"They're already asleep over in the van. They were tired out, but I think they had fun today," Linda said. "Did you?"

"Oh, yeah, I love it here. I'd live right on the beach if I could."

Linda laughed. "Well, I'm sure we'll be back; it's really not that far from town. I wish they'd hurry back here, though. I'm tired, and it's getting late. We still have to drive home."

Melody grinned. "Oh, I don't know, we could stay overnight."

"Not me, I'm all gritty, and now I'm hungry. We didn't bring any more food, anyway."

"Oh, yeah, that could be a problem," Melody said.

After a few more minutes talking about the day they'd had, they heard Steve talking. He and Ghost were almost back to the campsite. It was really too dark to tell, but Linda looked for any sign of anger between the two of them. She didn't sense any, and they were now laughing about something. That, at least, made her feel better.

"You sure took your time getting back here," Linda said, as they flopped down on the sand, beside her and Melody.

"So...did ya miss us?" Steve asked, teasing his sister.

"No, but we were ready to leave, then y'all disappeared. Melody went looking for you...she heard yelling. What was that about?"

Steve looked over at Ghost, who just shrugged, and drew shapes in the sand. "Yelling? No, we were just discussing some things. We got it sorted out," he said.

"Hmm, ok, whatever..." Linda said, but wasn't convinced.

Frowning, Melody gave Steve a look. "I heard you yelling, Steve...loud. I ran all the way back here. Don't deny it." she said.

Steve gave her a look, back. "Just drop it, Melody. It's none of your business, anyway," he said.

Ghost looked up, startled at Steve's tone.

"Well," Melody said, "I think it kinda is my business, when it's my brother you're yelling at." She stood up, brushing sand off her shorts, then walked to the van.

Steve hollered after her, as he watched her walk away, "Don't get all high and mighty, honey...not with me...we barely know you, so stay out of it."

"Fuck you," Melody said, but didn't look back.

There was a shocked silence between the three of them left there on the sand.  "What?" Steve asked. "She asked for it. I don't care who she is, it's not for her to say anything about me and Ghost." He saw Linda's expression. "And, you can stop looking at me like that, Linda; same goes for you, too. You're my sister, and I love you, and she's Ghost's sister, and I guess they love each other...I don't know...but, dammit, y'all both stay out of it. If we want y'all's opinion, we'll ask for it," Steve said.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


# 294 content

Ghost and Steve had walked quite a ways down the beach. They were in no hurry, just talking, and letting the waves lap at their feet.

"Remember the time we drove the car into the ocean?" Ghost asked.

Steve frowned. "Um, no...why would we do that? It would ruin my car."

Ghost stopped walking to gaze out at the ocean, now turning dark. "We did it in a dream, and it turned out to be the sky instead. The glowing fish were the stars, and everything was upside down." He nodded, as if this were a fact.

"Oh, one of your cool stories?" Steve asked, not really remembering.

Looking at Steve, now, Ghost's heart ached. "You never believe me, Steve," he said. I tell you my dreams every time." He paused a few seconds, then shrugged. "It's ok. You don't have to care."

Steve didn't know what Ghost was getting at, what he was trying to say. "I like hearing your dreams, but that's all they stories," he said, knowing that sounded lame.

"Whatever..." Ghost said, and continued walking in the sand.

Steve hadn't moved, and just watched, as Ghost kept walking farther away from him. Something was really bothering him, and he knew for sure, when he saw Ghost's shoulders shaking, and saw him reach up to swipe at his face.

He ran to catch up with Ghost. Clutching Ghost's wrist, he jerked him around to face him. Ghost didn't resist, nor did he look up at him. He just stood there, swaying slightly, letting the tears fall to the sand below. Steve's heart lurched, to see Ghost in such distress, so pulled him into an embrace.

"Come here, Babe, what is it? Why are you so sad?" He kissed the top of Ghost's head, smelling the fresh sea breezes infused strands of hair. He could feel Ghost's heart beating so fast, feel him breaking down, losing strength. Easing them both down, sitting side by side in the cooling sand, Steve tried again.

"Tell me what's the matter...please. Did I say something to upset you, make you mad? I'm sorry if I did."

Ghost shook his head, and sighed. "No, I'm just  tired, Steve."

"I know, and we're going home, as soon as we get back to..."

"No, that's not it," Ghost said. "My insides are tired."

"Your insides? Are you sick, do you hurt somewhere?" Steve asked, as he felt Ghost's forehead, to see if he had a fever.

Shaking his head, Ghost said, "No...myself, my whole being. I don't know what it's about, but I feel it."

Steve's mind was racing, trying to come up with a word, or anything to unlock what Ghost was talking about. Then, latching onto a word that flitted through his mind, he asked, "Your...soul?"

Ghost looked into Steve's eyes. "That's it," he whispered.

"What...what do you mean?" Steve asked.

Ghost lay his head on Steve's shoulder, and took his hand in his. " tired. It's ready to go...back. I've felt it being called back for awhile now, but I don't...didn't want to listen to it. Now I can't stop it, anymore. Steve, I'm scared." He began sobbing again.

Steve's heart was skipping beats; he thought he might pass out. can't...not now... But, his eyes and ears started acting weird, and a buzzing was coming from somewhere far away. He blinked a few times, trying to clear his vision of sparkly dots.

Ghost squeezed Steve's hand, hard, bringing him back from a near faint. "Steve? Can you hear me?" he asked, right up in Steve's ear. "Steve?"

Steve nodded, but slowly, as it was making him dizzy. His nightmare was almost coming true. His fear of Ghost willing himself into another state of being, of actually becoming a ghost, had plagued him all these years he'd known Ghost.

"Don't say that," Steve managed to say. "Don't ever say that."

"But, it won't stop. I can't make it stop. It's the way it's supposed to be, the way it's been every time, before, the way it will always be. It will happen again and again." Ghost said. He pushed back Steve's hair from his forehead, feeling how cold, and clammy he felt, yet he was drenched in sweat.

"We'll find each other know we will, but this time is over. I have no control over it, anymore...and I'm so tired of trying to make it not happen." Ghost hitched a sobbing breath.

Steve took hold of Ghost's shoulders ... God, he's so thin... gripping hard. "Don't let yourself give in, Ghost. You are strong. Fight for your life, fight with all you have. Don't just give in to it, the feelings you're having. You're just sinking into depression, that's all. You've been there before, where everything seems hopeless, and you know it doesn't last long. You know this. There is help...your therapist, all you can for yourself, and let me help you. Please, please don't give up on life, on yourself...on us...Don't leave me alone...Don't leave me alone...DON'T LEAVE ME ALONE... I'm begging you, please, please, God, do something. You can't have him, yet No way...NO WAY... Steve was shouting in his head.

Ghost heard it all. All of Steve's thoughts, and he knew Steve was frantic, could snap at any second. He wanted to calm him down, but how? Now that he'd started the whole A quick thought formed in his head...Wow, I'm feeling energized, again. This rant of Steve's is making me feel alive, again. Why? Why, when Steve's angry with me, does it get me going, get me turned on?... He grinned, in spite of himself. He didn't even realize that he was doing that, but Steve saw it...and he snapped.

"What the hell, Ghost? You think it's funny, now? Is this some sort of test of my loyalty to you...of my love for you?" He stood up, looking down at Ghost, now. "That's the shittiest thing you've ever done, and you've done plenty. I can start naming that what you want? Huh?"

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Sunday, March 13, 2016


# 293 content

Ghost and Melody turned, walking back to the others. Stevie and Mandy were back to digging in the sand, after splashing around in the waves. Linda and Steve were sitting on the blanket, drinking sodas, while they talked, and kept an eye on the kids.

Back now, Melody fished out a couple of sodas for her and Ghost. She began emptying her pockets of the shells.

"What did you find?" Linda asked.

"Shells, see," Melody said, laying them out on the blanket.

"Oh, those are nice ones," Linda said, and she picked some up to look closer. They began talking about the crafts they could make with them.

Ghost stretched out on the blanket, putting his head in Steve's lap, and closing his eyes. Steve smoothed the blond strands around Ghost's face, knowing he and Melody had had some sort of weird connection out there. He told himself he wasn't jealous. There was no need to be. Ghost and Melody were meant to find each other, if not now, then at another time, and they needed time to get to know each other, to find their connection as brother and sister. He knew this was how it should be.

He remembered all the worries Ghost had had when Linda came back into his own life. He'd been so afraid that things would change between them, that it would be different...and it had been, and still was changing. It was mostly for, definitely for good, and it hadn't changed how he and Ghost felt about each other. They were still strong, still in love.

So, why was he feeling like he'd lost his best friend? Not his lover, as that would never change, but the closeness, the fun, and having their own secrets that only they could talk about. Now, he had to share Ghost. That's what it was. He didn't want to share. He felt left out, when Ghost and Melody were laughing together. It was unsettling to have Ghost's attention drawn away from himself. Steve shook his head, trying to clear away these kinds of thoughts.

Ghost wasn't his possession. He didn't dictate what Ghost could or couldn't do. He didn't own him. But I want to. I have to. Ghost is mine, always, only mine. No one else can have him, love him, be friends with him... "Where the hell are these thoughts coming from," Steve asked himself.

"This is out of control," he muttered, running his hands over his face. He was jolted out of his wayward thoughts, when Ghost opened his eyes, staring straight up at him, and said,

"You don't have to worry. Everything will be all right."

Steve knew Ghost had heard every word, every jealous thought. Sucking in his breath, he said, "I'm sorry...I can't help it."

Ghost pulled Steve's face down to his, and kissed him. Then he whispered, "I love you...nothing will ever change that."

Steve nodded, too overcome with love and relief to say anything.

They all continued relaxing and playing with the kids, as the sunny afternoon turned to early evening. Behind them, the setting sun turned the sky into shades of pink streaks, as they looked east, toward the ocean. Ghost stood, holding out his hand to Steve. "Let's go walk by the waves," he said.

As they left, hand in hand, Linda was beginning to gather up their belongings. "I'm about ready to head home. How 'bout you?" she asked.

"Me, too. It's been so nice out here," Melody said. "Maybe next time we can have a campfire, and bring the tents."

Linda laughed. "You really like to camp out, don't you?"

Melody laughed. "Yeah, and I never even knew it. Not until I met y'all."

Shaking her head, Linda said, "I've never done much myself. I'm not so sure I'm a fan of camping out. It was ok when we were on our trip home, and this today is nice, but I'm all sunburned, and sticky with everywhere, if you know what I mean. I need a shower."

"That does sound good," Melody said. "I need my jammies on, and a cold drink, and I want to watch TV know, just chill out." They high-fived, and burst out laughing.

Linda looked over at the kids. "Ok, you two, did you find all your toys? We'll be leaving soon." She could see that they were tired, and knew they'd probably fall asleep on the drive home.

Melody was scanning the beach. It was now twilight, and hard to make out anything in the ever darkening day. "Where did Steve and Ghost go? I don't see them."

Linda looked up and down the area. The sand was still light enough to see if there was anybody out there. The beach was quiet and sign of them. "Hmm, I don't know," She said.

"I'll go out a ways, then," Melody said. "I'll see if I can find them." She began walking toward the shoreline, looking in both directions.

Linda finished packing up, then tried to keep Stevie and Mandy occupied, while they waited.  "Is Melody gonna get lost, too?" Stevie asked.

"No, of course not," Linda said, but thought to herself, 'I hope not'.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Friday, March 11, 2016


# 292 content

Linda was really confused, now. "There was a deer?" she asked Ghost.

"Uh-huh...we almost hit it, driving back home from Raleigh. And, Steve was acting weird all day. I could sense something was going to happen, and it did," Ghost said. "I told him, but he don't listen to me, much." He watched the passing scenery, as it changed from woods, to more open spaces. "We're almost there. It's a nice beach we're going to." He was finished talking about the omen for now, but he could hear Linda going over it, in her head.

He looked over at her. "You don't have to's not like a disaster omen, this time. It's just a revolution one."

"A revolution?" Linda asked.

"Yeah, where something gets resolved, or revolved, or something like that," Ghost said.

Linda repeated those words out loud. "Oh, you mean a resolution," she said.

"Yeah, that's it," Ghost said.

"Ok, when is it going to be resolved, and what is it about?"

Ghost shrugged. "Whenever it happens, and we won't know until after, but we already had signs for it."

Linda wasn't sure she understood, even now. "Well, that cleared that up...sort of." She smiled, and Ghost nodded, and smiled back. She saw Steve up ahead in the T-bird, make a turn off the highway. In a few more minutes, she caught her breath at the sight.

There it was, the Atlantic Ocean. This brought back a memory from her childhood, she'd forgotten. She had been here before, with her whole family, back when everything was good.

They found a parking area, not far from the beach, and they all got out. Stevie and Mandy were used to being at a sandy beach, having lived very near the Pacific Ocean all their lives, so they were tugging at Linda and Ghost to go play in the sand. They had their sand buckets and shovels all ready to go, and knew just what they wanted to do.

Melody was transfixed, staring out at the vast expanse of water. The sea breeze ruffled her hair, as she took in breaths of the salty air. "This sure is different from the Gulf," she said. "I thought that was huge, but can't believe I'm here."

Ghost was enjoying watching his sister's reactions, while Steve stood beside Linda, elbowing her side. "Remember this?" he asked.

"Yeah, it's all coming back to me," Linda said.

"Let's go, let's go..." Stevie hollered, and Ghost followed them down to the sandy shore. Steve, Linda, and Melody unloaded the cooler, and grabbed a couple of blankets from the trunk of Steve's car. Melody took her purse, and Ghost's backpack, too, as they made their way closer to the water.

The beach wasn't crowded, as only a few groups were scattered around, so they had lots of room to set up their spot. Linda and Steve spread out the blanket, and set the cooler on it. They watched the kids, who were already digging holes. Melody had taken her shoes off, and was walking along the wave line, picking up shells she found.

"You going in?" Steve asked Linda.

"Oh, I'll stick my feet in. I didn't wear a bathing suit this time."

"Ok, how about I take the kids in the water? I'll hang onto them, if they want to wade," he said.

"Sure, let's both go," Linda said. "Who wants to get their feet wet?" she asked the kids.

"Me, me," Mandy and Stevie yelled.

Steve laughed. "Well, come on, I'll race ya." He began running toward the water, with the kids running as fast as they could behind him.

Ghost followed, walking more toward Melody, who'd gone farther down the way. When he caught up with her, she showed him the shells. "These are so pretty. I'm going to try and make something with them, when we get home," she said.

Ghost kneeled, picking up another one, feeling the smooth surface. He closed his eyes, as he rubbed his fingers over and around the spiral shape. Melody could see his lips moving, saying some silent words to himself. She tried to sense what he was thinking, and feeling.

The swishing sound of the waves were soothing, hypnotizing. With her own eyes closed, she reached out for Ghost's hand, the shell trapped between their palms. She tried to make her mind a blank slate, for any impressions to appear. Soon, she heard Ghost's voice, from inside her own head; it was such a strange feeling. Realizing he was chanting...a soft prayer-like poem, of repeating words.

"You are beautiful, you have traveled from faraway places. We thank you for revealing your secrets of the sea to us." As the words repeated, she began to imagine another beach, different from the one she was standing on. A tiny shell began to form over a tiny creature, now growing larger, making a spiral. As it did so, the little creature was carried by the currents in the ocean, finally coming to the end of it's cycle. It washed ashore here, many, many miles from it's be found by Ghost.

Melody knew in her heart that it was meant to be exactly this way. Her brother would be the only one to revere and praise the tiny creature's life journey. She felt her own salty tears fall down her cheeks. She wiped them away, as she looked into Ghost's eyes, and knew she'd experienced something profound. They smiled.

"That was beautiful," Melody said. Ghost nodded, still too emotional to speak. He felt the same kind of connection with his sister, as with the was meant to be...they both had to be found. The beautiful shell would join his blue bird feather, and his Jesus Rock, to be kept forever.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Wednesday, March 9, 2016


# 291 content

Steve slammed down the hood of his T-bird. "You want to cancel this whole going to the ocean thing? We can, ya know...right now." He gave Ghost a look.

Ghost slowly walked to the car and got in. "No, I don't want to cancel it, but I need you to be careful driving, Steve. The omen..."

Steve sighed. "Ok, I'll be careful," he said, putting the car into gear. He spun gravel though, as he sped off down the driveway and onto the dirt road toward the highway.

"Steve!" Ghost yelled.

"Put your seat belt on...we're gonna go fast." Steve said, then laughed, as he saw Ghost clenching the arm rest tight, preparing for a crash.

"Whoo-whee," Steve hollered, getting the feel of the T-bird, again. "This here is driving. Sure beats that old U-Haul, any day."

The wind from the open windows, was blowing their hair back. By the time they got to the Yew, Ghost felt like he'd been holding his breath the whole way. When Steve pulled to a stop, in back of the club, he took a deep breath.

"What a ride," Steve said.

"I'm riding with Linda, next," Ghost said. He got out of the car, his legs shaking.

" scared? You don't like my driving?"

Ghost shot him the finger, as he went inside the back door of the club. Steve kept laughing.

Down the hallway, they found Kinsey at his desk, going over invoices. "Hey, guys," he said, looking up as they came into his office. "What's up?"

Ghost had plopped down on the old couch. "We're going to see the ocean. Linda and Melody and the kids are going, too. You can come, Kinsey, only I'm not riding with Steve. He scares me."

"How's that?" Kinsey asked.

Steve shook his head. "Aw, he thinks I drive too fast, that's all."

Kinsey raised an eyebrow at Steve. "I'm not going to say it, but I'm thinking it."

Steve shrugged. "I know, and I'll be careful."

"Where's Linda and Melody?" Ghost asked.

"I guess upstairs," Kinsey said. "Go on up."

Ghost brushed past Steve, as he went out of the office to go see Linda. He didn't say anything.

"Guess he's upset with me," Steve said. He sat down on the couch, and stared at Kinsey, who'd gone back to his paperwork. "Did your phone quit working?"

"Huh?" Kinsey asked, looking up. "My phone?"

"Yeah, when we had the eclipse earlier. Ours quit, and we couldn't even get it to turn back on." He pulled out his phone to check again. "'s working fine, now."

"What on Earth are you going on about? What eclipse?"

"You didn't see it? It was about...oh, a couple of hours ago, it got totally dark out, and lasted a few minutes," Steve said.

Kinsey looked confused. "Steve, there wasn't an eclipse, at least not over here."

"Well, that's weird, 'cause we sure had one. Ask Ghost, he'll tell ya." He looked toward the door, as they heard the kids clomping down the stairs, on the way to the office. The girls and Ghost were right behind them.

"Kinsey, Kinsey, we're going to the beach," Stevie hollered, as he burst into the office.

"Hey, kiddo, I heard. That'll be fun." Kinsey said. He smiled at the kid's excitement.

"We'll be gone all afternoon, I think, so you'll have some peace and quiet around here," Linda said.

"I don't mind the noise. Y'all just have a good time," Kinsey said.

"We will. Come on kids, let's get in the car." She ushered the kids out.

"Later, Kinsey..." Steve said, as he left, too.

Ghost and Melody were already on their way out to the parking lot. They had already discussed the riding arrangements. Ghost got in the van with Linda and the kids, while Melody stood by the T-bird.

"Guess I'm with you, Steve. I never rode in a T-bird before," Melody said.

"Well, get in. I hope Ghost didn't scare you off of my driving."

She shrugged. "He just said you were crazy, and I should buckle up." She laughed.

"Yeah? Well, I'll be careful, don't worry." Steve turned to Linda. "You can follow me out there."

"Will do, brother. Let's do this."

It was only a thirty minute drive to the coast. Linda had packed a cooler with snacks for everyone. The kids had dug out some toys to play in the sand with, and were now talking about what they should do first. Linda concentrated on her driving, trying to keep up with Steve. She did notice that Ghost was quiet.

"You ok over there? You haven't said two words since we left."

"I'm ok," he said, but his sigh said otherwise.

"Don't you like going to the beach?" Linda asked.

"Oh, I love the beach. We go a lot," he said, "but, not today. At first it sounded like fun, but after I heard what Kinsey said, I'm, well...I don't know...not scared, but worried? Kinda like that."

"Worried about what?"

"About today, when it was night."

Linda was confused. "You mean last night?"

Ghost shook his head. " was after breakfast. It got dark like night, for a little while...the eclipse. Did you see it?"

"I didn't notice that it got dark," Linda said. "We were busy inside, getting things ready, so maybe I forgot to look outside."

"See...Kinsey said it didn't happen at all, but me and Steve saw it. Terry didn't 'cause he was asleep, but it did happen. I told Steve it might be part of his omen."

"His what...omen?" Linda asked, frowning. What are you talking about?"

"Steve's omen He got it on the way back from Raleigh. Melody didn't say anything to you?"

"No, what's it about...this omen?"

Ghost shrugged. "I don't know, but the deer and the eclipse were part of it."

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Sunday, March 6, 2016


# 290 content

As Steve and Ghost came into the house again, Steve asked, "Hey, did Terry leave?" He looked around the living room.

Ghost gave him a look. "Man, you must be weirded out. Terry's truck is right out there in the driveway. He didn't go home yet."

"Oh, oh yeah, well, where is he then? I swear, Ghost, you creep me out sometimes. No wonder I get rattled."

Shrugging, Ghost went down the hall to check the bedrooms. "Here he is, in your room," he yelled back to Steve. "He's asleep. You want me to wake him up?"

"No, just leave him there. I'm fixing us a sandwich, then we'll go pick up the girls," Steve said. "You want mayo or mustard?" he hollered.

"Mustard," Ghost yelled back.

"What the hell are y'all yelling about?" Terry asked, as he came into the kitchen.

" want one?" Steve asked.

"Yeah, sure...mayo."

"Your hangover better?" Steve asked.

Terry frowned, "Hmmph, not much, but guess I'll live."

"Well, here, have some of this hot coffee and your lunch. Eating might help," Steve said, as he handed Terry his sandwich on a paper plate. He continued making the other sandwiches.  "You want to go to the coast with us, today?"

"Why? I've seen it before," Terry said.

"Well, we have too, but Linda, and Melody, and the kids haven't. They want to go."

"Oh, well...naw, I'm going back home. Y'all have fun."

"Ghost," Steve yelled. "Come and get it."

Terry gritted his teeth. "Damn you're loud."

Ghost came into the kitchen, holding the phone. "It still don't work," he said. "I was talking to Linda, when it quit."

"You sure it's charged up?" Steve asked. "Let me see it."

Ghost traded the phone for his lunch, while Steve fiddled with the phone.

"Yeah, nothing but a blank screen. Who knows, maybe that sun thing messed it up."

"What sun thing?" Terry asked.

"The sun did an eclipse just a few minutes ago," Ghost said, then choked on his food.

"Dammit, Ghost, settle ok?" Steve asked.

Ghost nodded, his eyes watering.

"Where's my phone...let me check it," Terry said. He found it in the living room. "Hey, it's not working, either."

"It was the sun thing," Ghost said.

Steve shook his head and sighed. "You ready to go?"

"No, I'm eating, duh..."

"Well, hurry up. Let's get going before I get in a bad mood," Steve said. "I'm gonna check out the car. It hasn't even been turned on in weeks."

Ghost looked at Terry, and snickered. Terry got the inference, and laughed.

"Guess I better get my stuff and get out there," Ghost said. He took one more huge swallow of his coffee, dribbling some down his shirt, then headed to his bedroom for his backpack and camera.

Terry joined Steve out by the T-bird. "How's she lookin'?" he asked.

Steve had the hood up, and was bent over, looking at the engine. "Ok, I think. Let me start it, and I'll check the oil." Slipping inside the familiar seat, he turned the key, then revved the engine a couple of times, before getting out to wait for it to warm up.

Ghost came running out. "Hey...oh, I thought you'd ran off and left me here."

"Not yet," Steve said. "You got your shit?"

"Yeah, right here."

"Well, guys, I'm outta here," Terry said, opening his truck's door. "See y'all when ya get back, I guess."

"We'll stop back in, later," Steve said.

Terry pulled out of the driveway, leaving a trail of exhaust smoke in his wake. Steve watched him, as he went down the dirt road toward the highway. "Needs an oil change on that clunker," he said.

Ghost was sitting on the porch steps, waiting. He was eager to go, but for some reason there was a nagging sound he kept hearing in his words, just a light buzzing. He tried yawning, to clear his ears, then turning his head different ways.

"What the hell are you doing over there?" Steve asked.

"Nothing...just trying to make it stop."

"I'm not even gonna ask," Steve said, but sure enough, Ghost told him anyway.

"It's a warning buzzer," Ghost said. "You here." He pointed to his head. "You want to know what it's about?"

Steve pretended not to hear.

"Hey, you wanna know?" Ghost said, louder.


"It's about your omen, Steve. Maybe you should know about it."

"I don't want to know," Steve said. "If something's gonna happen, then bring it on. I'll deal with it then. Now, get in the car, and let's go."

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing

Friday, March 4, 2016


# 289 content

As Steve put away the rest of the groceries, he noticed Ghost had not followed him. Standing in the doorway, looking at him, he shook his head. He'd never even tried to get up. Then, there was Terry, snoring, still on the couch. With the last item put away, he turned out the light in the kitchen. He had to search through the mess on the coffee table to find the TV remote, then clicked it off.

"Well, they can just stay out here, if they want to. I'm going to bed," Steve said to himself. He went into Ghost's room, and seeing Spirit asleep in the middle of the bed, he said, "Scoot over, cat, I'm sleeping in the big bed, tonight."

It seemed he'd just fallen asleep, when Ghost was waking him up. "Wake up...I brung ya some coffee."

He could smell the rich aroma, but why was there coffee in the middle of the night? Opening his eyes, he was surprised to see bright sunshine filtering through the curtains. "It's morning already?"

"No, it's still night time, and you're dreaming all this," Ghost said, then laughed. "Drink your coffee and wake up. I'll be outside."

Steve took the mug, and drank, letting the warmth bring him to full consciousness. It was a weird feeling not knowing how the night had passed so fast. How could it be morning, when he'd only been asleep for five minutes? It was giving him a headache, trying to figure it out. Swallowing the last of his coffee, he went in search for more. He made a face, seeing what was left from the previous night's libations scattered around the room.

"Oh, morning..." Steve said, as he came into the kitchen. Terry was pouring himself another cup. "You just wake up, too?"

"Um-hmm. You got any Tylenol?" Terry asked.

"In the bathroom cabinet; help yourself."

Terry headed down the hallway, as Steve took his fresh cup of coffee out to the front porch. He sat down on the swing, and watched, as Ghost did his morning ritual, out in the grassy area of the yard. He always liked the way Ghost greeted the mornings. He was fluid in his movements, and in his natural element. He never seemed awkward or clumsy, like he was most of the time. It was just the opposite from himself. Whenever Ghost made him do the greeting, he was the one who stumbled, and felt silly. He was smiling, as Ghost came back up the porch steps.

"Everything good?" Steve asked him.

"Yeah...but, I need to go to the ocean today."


"Because, I want to, and Melody said she wants to. She never seen an ocean before, so I told her you'd take us." Ghost smiled.

Steve squinted up at him. "Well, thanks for letting me in on the plan. Kind of last minute, isn't it?"

"What's that?" Ghost asked.

"Oh, just you waited until now to tell me, instead of telling me earlier, when you and Melody were deciding you wanted to go," Steve said, almost confusing himself.

"So, can we go?" Ghost asked, still not knowing what Steve meant.

Steve took a minute to think. Frowning and closing his eyes, he went over the excuses he could use to get out of going. Then, blowing out a big sigh, he said, "I guess so...when...after lunch?" Ghost nodded.

"Ok, you call her, and say we'll come pick her up in a little while."

"Thanks," Ghost said, then went inside to find the phone.

Steve gently swayed back and forth on the swing, sipping his coffee. The clearing in the front yard was a bit shimmery in the mid-morning heat, and he could hear Ghost talking on the phone, to Melody.  Closing his eyes, he just sat there listening to the hushed noises. He loved living out here where it was quiet. ...maybe that could be worked into a song, somehow... he thought, as his mind drifted.

A cloud passed over the sun, blocking the light for a minute, and he felt a sudden chill in the air. He looked across the yard, seeing it was shadowed now, but somehow not really a shadow from a cloud...a darkening of the air, and his eyes were feeling funny. I going blind?... Blinking, to clear his eyes, didn't help, and he began to feel panicky, as it continued to get darker.

"What the hell?" he asked. "Ghost...come here...look at this. What's going on?"

Slamming open the screen door, Ghost came out in a hurry. "Steve...the phone quit working. What's going on? It's dark, and it's not night." He ran out into the yard, looking up at the sky.

"Get back up here," Steve yelled.

"Is it the mist? What the hell is it?" Ghost asked, again. He came back up on the porch. The lamp inside the house was on, casting it's light out onto the porch, now. They were transfixed by the eeriness of day turning into night.

"Oh, man, it must be an eclipse...a total one," Steve said, as the darkness began to brighten a bit.

"Cool, I never seen one, before," Ghost said. "I thought it was your omen or something." He wasn't feeling scared, now.

"Aw, shit...why'd ya have to bring that up?" Steve asked. "Now, I'm nervous all over again."

Ghost shrugged. "Well, it wasn't, I don't think, but you never know. It could be a sign...of something." By now it was full daylight, again. "Do you feel strange? I do, like somebody walked over my grave."

Steve looked hard, at Ghost. "Don't...just don't."

"Don't what?"

"Talk about your grave; that's morbid."

Ghost laughed. "No, it's not. Don't you ever wonder what yours will look like?"

"No...never, and I don't want to even be talking about it," Steve said, and shuddered.

"We go to graves all the time," Ghost said. "There's a bunch of 'em in our back yard. They're not scary."

"Yeah, because they're not ours," Steve said.

"Ok, ok, but you know we'll have one, right?" Ghost asked. "Maybe, I hope, beside each other someday." He kept on about graves.

"Stop it, I mean it," Steve said. "I'm going in. It feels too weird out here in the open." He opened the screen door, and Ghost followed him inside.

Next part coming soon!

Peace, Love, & Writing