Free ghost story on my website:
Katie held her nose against the stench of Seth’s vomit filling the car.
“Dammit Seth, put your face farther out of the car,” Josh said, while rolling all the windows down.
Once Seth was able to stop dry-heaving, he sat up and leaned his head against the seat. “Shut up ass, you’re the one who picked that poison factory of a truck stop to eat at.” He closed the door, causing the stench to waft through the air again.
“We’re going to have to find somewhere to stop,” Seth grumbled.
Katie looked at the clock and sighed. Two weeks ago the three of them had applied for a job working on pipelines in Montana. Being from a small town of five hundred and fifty people had given them few options and leaving the dead-end town seemed like a dream come true, not to mention no one would be there to miss any of them. Seth and Katie had lost both their parents five years ago in an accident, and hadn’t seen the rest of the family since. Josh’s family didn’t give a shit about him. They cared more about their meth lab and the losers that frequented their home. So yeah, leaving was the best thing that could happen to the three of them.
The problem now was getting there. They’d left yesterday morning bright and early, excited for the journey, but so far, things were not looking good. They’d only gone eight hundred miles out of a twenty two hundred mile trip, all thanks to the flat tire incident yesterday, and now this.
“Come on Seth. You sure you can’t suck it up?” Katie asked.
“Are you freaking kidding me? How about I just start puking in the car, or better yet, in your lap?”
“God Seth, don’t get your panties in a wad.” Katie shook her head and gave Josh a pointed look. As much as she loved her brother, he could be a real tit bag.
Josh intertwined his fingers with Katie’s and gave her hand a gentle squeeze.
“We will be fine,” he reassured her. “We still have three days to get there. That’s plenty of time.”
fallen prey to MaryAnn’s pleading, and I follow her out the window, my stomach
churning with dread, a contrast to her excitement. I don’t know why I let her
talk me into these things. She’s always getting us into trouble, has been since
we were little. Yet, here I am, still following her after seven years of
mistake after mistake. There’s something about her I can’t say no to. I’ve
always thought of her as my sister, not my cousin, and considering we were born
only two days apart, we are more like sisters—look like it too. But still, even
sisters tell each other no every once in a while. Not me. This time though, I
flashlights give off little light in the dark forest, mine unsteady as it
shakes in my hand. Thorns scrape at my skin and I look back, hoping to see a
light in the cabin on and my grandfather coming out to see where us girls have
run off to. No such luck. The small, two-bedroom cedar cabin is dark, its frame
nothing but an outline against the trees around it.
should go back,” I whisper, my voice trembling.
whining, Ester? This is no different than walking through the woods during the
During the day, the green leaves look welcoming, not over-powering and creepy
like now. I don’t feel trapped and afraid when walking these familiar woods
when the sun is shining bright, but now I do.
trying to scare you,” she hisses, as she shines her light on a raccoon
scavenging for food. It rushes off to hide from what he perceives as danger and
we continue on through the thicket.
MaryAnn says, I know she’s wrong. I saw the fear in our grandfather’s eyes as
he told us the story of the thing that haunts these woods. MaryAnn had been
enthralled as she sat by the fire, her eyes bright, her body unmoving as she
absorbed every word. I had been terrified. Our grandfather has never been a
skeptical man, always saying rumors and legends are nonsense. “What you don’t
see with your eyes, don’t witness with your mouth.” So to see the fear in his
eyes as he witnessed the story he told us tonight is enough to convince me he
was telling the truth, and not just some tale to scare his grandchildren.
overhead and a chill slowly creeps up my back, making me shiver.
should wait. I don’t have a good feeling about this.”
my pleas, knowing I won’t go back alone.
rustle as a slight wind picks up. I can no longer see the outline of the cabin.
I don’t know if it’s from my fear, but our lights seem to grow dimmer, making
the darkness feel as if it is weighing down on us.
comes into view, with timber laying hazardously along the ground.
there,” MaryAnn whispers. “This is where grandpa and his workers have been logging
close to the overlook.”
reach the overlook and she sees it is the same during the night as it is during
the day, we can go back to the safety of the cabin. I can already feel the
relief of being back under my blankets, eagerly waiting for morning, with the
fresh smell of biscuits baking in the oven and bacon frying in the pan filling
I ask, panicked, and spin around in a circle, my flashlight shaking with more
stop this nonsense. I’m sure it was nothing.”
other side of the clearing, we start the mile hike up the incline and once
again I wish we had stuck to the main road instead of taking the shorter path
through the woods. The ground is slick from the rain we had yesterday, and with
every step I take, I lose two as I slide back down.
hand, steadying me, as we both use our weight to climb the impossible hill.
that?” she asks, her voice a bit higher than before.
my stomach tensing. She better not be playing any games with me. I will rat her
out in a heartbeat if she is.
you think it is?”
answer, a strange mist builds in front of us. I examine it closely and point it
out to MaryAnn, but before it takes on a shape, it’s gone.
spins around us, and not caring about what MaryAnn thinks, I let go of her hand
and tumble back down the hill, scared for my life. My feet are unsteady as the
land levels out again and I fall over a log. Seconds later, MaryAnn lands on
top of me.
screams, terror in her voice. “We have to get back to the cabin.”
see?” I demand, as I race after her, dodging fallen limbs. But she doesn’t
answer. She keeps running, looking back to make sure that I am close behind her.
comes from behind me and I’m shoved into MaryAnn’s back, making us both lose
my face as we scramble to our feet, our flashlights lost in the darkness. We
try our hardest to run through the darkness with no light to guide our way.
MaryAnn grabs my hand, our sweaty fingers clinging as tightly as they can while
we try to make out where we are.
screams, her body jerked away from me, I feel as if I can’t breathe. Something
is trying to take her from me. My grip on her hand tightens, my small twelve
year old frame pulling as hard as possible against whatever is trying to tug
behind her catches my eye as we struggle, but I can’t make out who or what it
is. It’s shrouded in a black cloak, practically invisible under the blanket of
night. I do make out the grey mist behind it, as if it’s drifting and waiting
for its prey.
feeling as if it’s trying to escape out of my chest, and my throat grows tight
as I choke on my tears. MaryAnn screams, begging me not to let go of her, as
our fingers begin to slip.
hear us? We have to be close to the cabin.
explodes in the back of my head, and I pitch forward, disoriented. My legs slip
out from beneath me, and I can feel myself losing consciousness. MaryAnn’s
fingers slip out of mine as I land against the damp leaves on the ground. The
last thing I hear is her pleading for me to save her.
screaming and scared, feeling like I was locked in that trunk again, bound and
unsure of the outcome. I was dazed. I knew I was awake, but it was still hard
to tell what was real. I felt the mattress underneath me, and the clothes that
smelled of spices and were faintly musky and sweaty. There was a light beside
the bed I could turn on to show that I was perfectly safe. None of that
mattered, though, because I was frantic, tears falling down my face, trying to
get out of the confined space that had me caged in.
talking to me, calmly and evenly. Whoever it was grabbed my arms and lifted
them, moving me so my back was to a chest, clearly not my sister’s. I yanked my
arms to get free, but whoever had me was too strong, the voice continuing to
speak, telling me I was all right, that I was safe, and there wasn’t anything
to be worried about.
just a dream, there’s nothing to be afraid of.”
Lincoln’s voice that finally trickled through, and I realized where I was. He
had his arms wrapped around me, holding me still so I wouldn’t hurt myself—or
him, for that matter. My head was somewhere near the crook of his neck as I
craned it back, looking up at the black ceiling, its endless depths forbidding
and ominous. Tears fell, my breathing was labored, and my heart raced. He never
moved, even as my legs kicked the blankets away, hating myself for allowing
this to happen.
got myself to calm down, Lincoln turned me and without a word pulled me into a
hug. I wrapped my arms around his waist, listening to his heartbeat as it
hammered violently in his chest. With his head resting on mine, I barely felt
the stubble scratching at my forehead, abrasive but welcome.
His voice was throaty, like he’d just woken up himself. “Are you okay?”
managed to say, pulling back, noticing the light on the nightstand was on, dim
in the darkness. “I’m so, so sorry. That was—”
considering.” He shrugged, his hand on my shoulder as I wiped the tears off my
good thing I don’t sleep naked,” I giggled, trying to lighten the mood.
depends on who you’re asking.” He smirked.
of course. I was feeling all warm and cozy with his hand still on my shoulder
and then I noticed he wasn’t wearing a shirt. Good Lord. Trust me, it was
everything I ever thought it would be. No, it was definitely better. He was
perfect; chiseled chest, washboard abs, thick arms, and a dark line of hair
leading from his belly button until it disappeared underneath his pajama pants.
I’m pretty sure if I kept looking I was going to start drooling, literally, and
that would be . . . just no.
like nothing,” he said, raising his brows.
important,” I answered nervously, biting my lower lip.
squeezed my shoulder lightly.