In my last post, I said that I was going to be participating in Nanowrimo and that I would post updates on my word count and maybe an excerpt or two. Here are some stats : I am currently at 27,872 words and am averaging over 2,000 words a day. If I continue in this manner, I will reach 50,000 words on Thanksgiving Day, and will really have something to be thankful for. In honor of my having reached the halfway point on Friday the 13th, here’s an excerpt of a ghostly nature.
“The old lady sitting next to my bed that night wasn’t the only dead person that visited me; around this same time I was also visited by a man who was either very tall, or was standing on something, or was floating up near the ceiling of my bedroom. All of these visitations were at the house where we lived from when I was about eight years old till I left at about twenty-two. I had three bedrooms in that house; a very small one when we first moved in, then my dad added a family room, bedroom and a laundry room onto the house and my sister moved into the new bedroom so I moved into her old one. Then when she moved out and got married, I moved into the one she left. The second bedroom was the one where I saw the dead people- oh, and a couple of dogs too. They were digging into the floor of the bedroom and I didn’t want to know what they were trying to dig up, so I screamed. As with the other visits, they disappeared when my mom or dad would arrive in my room, wanting to know what I was screaming about now. I never saw any dead people or dogs or anything in the other two rooms that were my bedrooms. I did have other times, in other houses or places, when I saw or heard or felt presences when there shouldn’t have been anyone else there. At least, not anyone in a material body form. Once, when I was working on the ranch where I worked and spent many of my younger years, I was in the old house that we used then as a girls dormitory; it was during the day and everyone else was out working. I had come back to the house to get something that I needed, that I had forgotten that morning to take with me to the barn where I worked. My bunk was downstairs, and while I was trying to find whatever it was I’d come back for, I heard a girl’s voice singing upstairs. I went up to see who it was but as soon as I got to the top of the stairs, it stopped. I looked around in the rooms up there, there was no one in the house except me. I thought, well, it must have been outside, so I went downstairs and outside and walked all the way around the house but there was no one in sight. I shrugged it off, went back inside and resumed my search for the forgotten item. The singing began again, definitely coming from upstairs, and I went back up. The singing stopped again as I reached the top of the stairs. I searched the rooms again. This was a very old house, with just four small rooms upstairs, and no closets to hide in and no way for anyone to sneak around if they were trying to hide from- the floors squeaked too much. The beds were just old Army cots, you couldn’t hide under one, and as with the first time I went up, there was no one there. Whoever was singing was not a “live” person, in the flesh, so to speak, and whatever form the person who was singing was in, they were not going to show themselves to me. I left the building at a faster pace than I came in, and still didn’t have the item I’d come back for. But I wasn’t going back again, not by myself.
When I moved into the house where we live now, after I married my second husband, he would be gone in the evening on many nights, teaching photography at a community college. I would be at home, and on about three occasions I heard someone come in our kitchen door and would feel a presence in the room. Each time I thought it was my husband coming home early, maybe a class had been cancelled or something, and I would go to greet him in the kitchen. But it wouldn’t be him, it would be a short man dressed in a dark suit of clothes that had very long tails on the coat and he would be wearing a top hat, like Abraham Lincoln. But he was too short to be Lincoln. When I would realize it wasn’t my husband, he would disappear, in sort of a slow-motion dissolve. I would be startled but not scared, there was no malevolence in the air or anything frightening about the man. He was just there, and then he wasn’t. This house also is very old, over one hundred years at least, and has seen its share of births and deaths. My husband’s son was born in this room where I am writing. We know the names of some of these people, and know that one of the previous owners has made herself known to us in various ways, although I have never seen her. Her name is Laurel and she doesn’t like for my husband to go away on trips and leave the house by itself, unprotected, I suppose. So she breaks things right before we are to leave on a trip. Like the stove, or the water pump, or the pipes. She also slams doors, or rather I should say she makes noises like a door slamming but no door has slammed, and once when we were talking about Laurel and the things she does, my husband smelled a rose perfume. I don’t wear perfume of any kind, so we believe it was her. She just wanted us to know that she was there, and was listening.”