“Listen” — Advent Ghosts 2020

The historical society sells a gilded ornament each year. This, of John, of Jack, shows his eyes downcast. His widow chose the image for the portrait, after enduring faithlessness, blood, and grief. Her black veil burns with heat, not chill.

What is preservation if not a gathering of lost souls, their dreams, their crimes, all that they believed was buried with them? What is this present, masquerading as the past, rousing spirits and preparing the way for all who are damaged? New ghosts cling to the old white house, rewriting its fate and haunting the future.

They will be heard.

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Advent Ghosts 100 Word Storytelling is put on by Loren Eaton at I Saw Lightning FallYou can read this year’s entries there. Visit back here throughout the day for a growing crop of spooky stories from a range of writers! Loren posts them all day today, the darkest day of the year.

This is an exactly 100-word flash fiction piece for a tradition of writing ghost stories on Christmas Eve. We acknowledge a sinful and hopeless world, and welcome the dawn in full awareness that Christmas day brings us light.

Search tag “Advent Ghosts” to read all of my 100-word stories for this project over the years.

“Rattle” — Advent Ghosts 2018

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Rattle

 

First appearing to me when I was a child, it rattled past the ornament box I’d come to claim from a dark corner of our garage.

Only bones. Its back curved gently along the spine, its toes landing with a soft tap as it walked, stilting, no skin on anything. Even the tail was bare, white, hard.

It had a shyness mixed with urgency, wanting something. 30 years later I still don’t know what.

Part of myself moved with that creature.

I never told anyone. Alive and not.

It still comes when I call. I don’t talk about that, either.

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This is an exactly 100-word flash fiction piece for a tradition of writing ghost stories on Christmas Eve. We acknowledge a sinful and hopeless world, and welcome the dawn in full awareness that Christmas day brings us light.

Advent Ghosts 100 Word Storytelling is put on by Loren Eaton at I Saw Lightning Fall. See other entries there.

Note: I regret being unable to provide attribution for the photo. This is as close as I could get to the source.