Previously in this blog serial...
Now the HAUNTING continues...
I am taking a seat on an old wooden chair, its complete lack of comfort matching my every sensation. The promise of a first hand account of ten years ago forces me to tolerate Floridia Minch a little longer. I know she is a passive aggressive gossipmonger, but she may hold insight into what happened to my brother.
“I happened to glance out my window that evening, minding my own business, when I heard a violation of the noise ordinance,” Ms. Minch begins, emphasizing her own innocence. I want to ask what this has to do with anything, but I wait as patiently as possible. “There sat Bertha Waterbottom on her rusty porch swing, blaring that wicked country-gospel music as if it were three in the afternoon. I don’t know how many times I told that woman how gospel should always come before country. Now, where was I?”
This does not inspire confidence, not that I should have any in this bitter old woman. “You were watching your neighbor as she sat on her porch swing.”
“That’s right,” she rubs her chin. “Anyway, her porch light faded out and I assumed she hadn’t paid her electric bill again. Then the light returned a few minutes later and she was gone.”
I sit motionless on the uncomfortable chair, trying to process the simplicity of what she witnessed. She makes it sound like seeing someone disappear is an everyday occurrence, but maybe it was back then. Tracy Newcastle allegedly saw what happened to Tommy in Stickler Woods, but my parents said she was in shock. All they told me was that Tommy was gone. That he disappeared and was presumed dead. That the person who destroyed the town was responsible. Just like when I was a kid, I want to know more.
“That’s it? One minute here and then gone?” I ask as my irritation increases. For someone who prides herself in knowing everything about everyone, Ms. Minch is lacking in important details. “What actually happened to your neighbor? Didn’t you hear anything?”
“The widow Waterbottom’s blasphemous music was too loud to hear anything else, so all I know is what I saw.” She shrugs her bony shoulders, “I suggest you go to the library.”
“That’s my next stop.” I keep my response short because I want out of this pointless conversation and away from this frustrating resident of The Golden Dusk.
“Then ask the librarian for the book.” She waves a hand, as if dismissing me.
“What book?” I inquire, ignoring the gesture and doubting a book recommendation will be of any use.
Ms. Floridia Minch looks at me like I’m the stupidest person in the world, and maybe I am. I feel like it as she sighs and then casually answers, “Benjamin Straker’s book, of course.”
The HAUNTING continues in…
Thank you for reading or listening to my half-blind words!
I finally finished remodeling my online home!
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