Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: EERIE (07/28/16)
- TITLE: Unwelcome Guest
By Sherry Hoffcastel
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“Your mother tells me you’ve been hallucinating. Would you like to talk about what you’re seeing?”
Sure, Spock. Right now I’m seeing King Kong reach through that window and mash you into a pulp. Instead I say, “They are not hallucinations. I’m not on any drugs and I am not crazy. What I saw was real and it ticks me off that nobody else is seeing it too.”
The doctor and my mom exchange a look and he types something on the tablet. “And what exactly is “it” that you’re seeing?”
I roll my eyes and take a deep, exasperated breath. “Yesterday when I was sitting on my bed I saw my favorite necklace slide off the dresser. The window was closed, the air was off, and nobody else was in the room. It was as if someone deliberately pushed it off.” I kick Mom with the toe of my Converse sneaker. “On Saturday when I was in the shower someone was knocking on the bathroom door. When I called out nobody answered. I was going to tell Matty to knock it off but I remembered that he wasn’t even home. Remember?”
Mom shrugs her shoulders and twists a lock of her hair. “Honey, I was on the phone with the cable company. I’m sorry, I just don’t remember. I do believe that whatever you think you’re seeing or hearing is upsetting you and that’s why we’re here. I want you to get help.”
I glare at her as I stand up, preparing to storm out. “You want to help me? Back me up!”
I don’t look at her as we drive home. She tries to talk to me and I pop in my ear buds and listen to Shawn Mendes as loud as I can stand. When we get home I run to my bedroom and slam the door, thankful my brother is sleeping over at a friend’s house tonight. I am so not in the mood for his stupid jokes. Suddenly I hear a shriek coming from Matty’s room. “Jamie! Come in here!”
I’m there in seconds and find Mom with her hands firmly clasped around her mouth, eyes as wide as dinner plates. I follow her gaze to all seven of my brother’s Harry Potter books lined up in a perfect row in the center of the floor. “What’s with the books, Mom?” I ask nervously.
She wrings her hands through her hair. “I put those books in one pile on his bed two minutes ago.”
I feel like I’ve been drenched by a bucket of ice water. My hands are clammy and all the hairs on the back of my neck bristle. I want to run but I can’t move. In a voice barely above a whisper I say, “Mommy, can I sleep in your room tonight?” She nods once, takes my hand, and closes the door firmly behind us. We’re lucky if we get in one good hour of sleep. Every time one of us starts to nod off the other whispers, “Did you hear that?” A door opens and closes, a chair drags across the kitchen floor. I’m almost positive I hear footsteps in the den.
When the sun finally pokes through the blinds we beg our pastor to come and pray over the house. The process takes three terrifying hours, during which we are asked to dispose of all our tarot cards and anything related to our old life before we became believers. He gently explains that when we accepted Christ we became new creatures in Him. Mom and I tearfully repent and for the first time in weeks the house feels safe again. In spite of the peace I still have a nagging sense that something isn’t quite right. I walk through my bedroom, going through random drawers, more convinced than ever that I am forgetting something. Like a jolt of electricity it hits me. Matty took my Ouija board to his friend’s house…
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