I was working on writing another short story for you all when my last one turned into the first chapter of my first book. It’s set in Spain and is a story about romance and drama. I’ll post updates on it as it progresses and I will continue to write shorts so you all can be entertained! Remember to check out my favorite blogs heirofbreath and nerdilatina
I love them both dearly and they both inspire and support my writings. So thank you Davie for reviving my passion in writing again and being a great friend and putting up with me, and thank you Laura for being so supportive and also a great friend!
Oh and to all my new followers
“It’s been playing for hours. I thought it burned down,” Davie asked concernedly.
“The shack did… The cops said there was a piano still there,” I replied trying to ignore the obvious fear emanating from him.
“It freaks me out,” Davie said again. He stopped on the bridge and looked over the creek and cried. His tears were of fear. He had a right to be scared. We all did. Chris barely spoke before this and now he doesn’t say a word. He had just left for Colorado to visit with his family for Christmas.
Heather and Jessi both refused to even acknowledge the event and never mentioned Tre. Mike was a lot more moody than he had ever been. He snapped at everyone and that put the gang in a sour mood. Davie is new to the group so I don’t know how this changed him. He speaks to me but it seems like he’s always afraid of something.
It was the second week of December when the creek was frozen over and snow was covering the ground when Mike finally spoke.
“I want to go see it.” He said in a hushed voice. We all were taken aback by it. I shot a glance towards the girls. They looked shaken. Heather didn’t even smile.
“Why!?!” they said in unison. Davie came into the garage at that time. He never looked happy anymore.
“Why what?” Davie asked quickly.
“Why does Mike want to go back to the shack,” I said plainly. I wanted to know as well. Why should we go back. I seen what happened. I see it every time I close my eyes. It’s the reason I haven’t slept in two months.
“I was walking over the bridge the other day and I heard it; music,” he said quickly as if the very mention of it would summon that thing. Davie shot a look my way. I knew what that meant. We had heard it too. Greensleeves played that night. It echoed through the woods; through our souls.
“I, um, heard it too,” Jessi started, “when I was skating over the bridge after I was thrown out of Lamasco.”
Heather started crying. He face seemed in pain. “I heard it too,” she sobbed, “I was waiting for a train to pass and I heard it over the train.”
Davie shifted uncomfortably and said what I had feared he would, “Jake and I heard it too. I climbed to the warehouse roof and it was playing. It was playing for hours.”
I didn’t want to believe it. I hoped he’d just forget about it. I wanted to forget about it. I knew what I was supposed to say next. I was supposed to say to just forget it and we can move on. Boy am I stupid.
“We can leave now,” I started, “Once we see it’s just in our heads, we can put this behind us.” Man I sounded braver than I felt. I seen everyone nod. This was it.
We made our way to the creek. It was a long and silent trip. The sun started to set quickly. I didn’t know it was this late. We came to the tracks and slowly started down them. The path that lead to the now burned shack was still overgrown.
I could smell the burnt wood. The smell lingered as I pushed aside the last bush. There it was: a burned shack.
“Where’s the piano?” Jessi asked quietly. I didn’t know. The police said it was left there. Mike slowly walked towards the center of the nonexistent shack. The fire had totally burned it to the ground. I noticed the floor and I think Mike did too. It was a patch of the wooden floor that lay untouched by flame.
Mike looked at me and my body froze. It had been there. That piano had been there and now it was gone. That’s when the music started. We all stood still. Heather screamed. The sun had almost set. We all stood in the orange glow as the music played.
I looked towards Mike and he looked emotionless. Davie started to hyperventilate and Jessi was attempting to get him to calm down.
“WHAT DO YOU WANT?!?!” Mike screamed, trying to drown out the music. Greensleeves was playing louder now and Mike sank to his knees.
“Fuck you. FUCK YOU!” I screamed loudly. It made my throat hurt how loudly I screamed. The music stopped suddenly. Everyone looked at me and I looked at them. The sun had completely set.
You could still see thanks to the moon above. It cast an eerie blue glow on the snow. Ever so slowly the music started again. Everyone ran towards me to huddle together. I slowly looked around. Even with the glow of the moon, it was still very dark.
I squinted in the darkness and there it was; the piano was back and someone was playing it. This time it was Jessi who screamed. Everyone was looking at it but we couldn’t believe it. Tre was playing with his back turned to us.
Blood looked like it had dried on his shirt from the back where five holes appeared to be. I couldn’t move. Heather was gripping my left hand and Davie, my right.
“Tre?” Mike said quietly moving toward the figure of our thought to be deceased friend.
“Tre, it’s Mike. Tre?” he said again. Mike placed his hand on Tre’s shoulder and the music stopped. I hated that song. Tre wouldn’t budge from the piano. Mike started to walk around the piano when I seen it again. We all seen it.
That figure was there again. It’s hand dangling out of it’s cloaked had those long fingers. It’s featureless face that had haunted my nightmares for the past two months glowed in the moonlight.
“Run Mike! RUN!” We screamed and Mike took off. There was a sound like I had never heard before as we all ran towards the railroad tracks. Like something had been impaled and was screaming out in pain. The music accompanied that noise. Mike was in front of all of us. That’s when I seen him slip.
Mike had ran onto some ice and slid to the frozen creek below. We all stopped. We all were afraid. Jessi uttered the words, “Is that blood?”
The crimson ooze was slowly appearing on the ice. I seen white at the source of the blood. He had broken his leg and was knocked out.
“We can’t leave him here!” I bellowed as I slid down the hill myself. When I reached Mike I smelled it; a metallic scent. It was bad. I turned Mike to his back and fell backwards.
His face wasn’t there. I couldn’t move. I looked down the creek and seen it there. It moved as if the wind was pushing it. I felt a chill in my bones.
“What’s he doing down there?!” I heard a voice say. I looked up and seen Mike standing there, out of breath. Heather screamed and Jessi and Davie were crying.
“Go! Just go you all!” I screamed at them. They looked on. “Go you morons!” I yelled again. They all took off down the tracks. I was alone now. I stood up and climbed to the top of the frozen banks. Once I got to the top, I was met with a fright. That thing that was playing the piano was standing there. It’s eyes were missing.
I shoved passed it and ran back towards the shack. I didn’t know where I was going at the time. I just wanted to be far away. When I stumbled upon the shack again I fell to my knees. There was a fire going in the center of where that shack stood. The piano was still there.
I couldn’t go anymore. I was exhausted. I pulled out the piano bench and sat down. It was oddly warm. I looked down and seen the keys were moving but there was no sound coming from them. In fact, there was no sound anywhere. I stood up and turned around. Ever faceless, it stood before me. I couldn’t move.
“What do you want?” I asked. It just stood there. That arm was swaying in the moonlight. It moved towards me and I stepped backwards quickly. I hit the piano and it rolled. It rolled towards a tree and I heard a crash. A tree branch had fallen through the piano with amazing force. I could hear again. I looked back and it was gone. I turned to look at the destroyed piano but it too had vanished.
I slowly made my way through the woods and onto the tracks. I was alone. I walked home and made it to my parents garage. They all were there. Everyone hugged me when I appeared in the doorway.
“The piano is gone. Branch fell through it.” I said quietly. They were staring at me.
“What?” I asked looking down. I was bleeding from my arm. It didn’t hurt.
“I’m fine guys. Really I am,” I said. They had been listening to the radio to Christmas songs. Greensleeves started playing on the radio. Davie walked over and turned it off.
The police never found out what had happened to Tre that night in the woods and we never spoke of that night or the return to the woods ever again. I go to the top of that warehouse sometimes. I can still hear the music playing from the woods. I knew the others did too, but they never mention it. We decided to let the dead bury the dead.
The night has overtaken this town again. I look out from my window to see her. She’s being yelled at again. It happens a lot more frequently now that her mother left. A door slammed off in the distance. I hear her curse his name in the abyss. She is accompanied by a chorus of crickets. I can’t see her anymore. I heard a sound outside my window. I continue to stare into the bleakness. The alley lamps are broken so I cannot pierce the veil. My light shines onto my roof and I see her.
“Hey,” she said in a whimper. I can see her eyes. Both are stained from the eyeliner she is wearing. Black tears stream from her face. I opened my window to let her in.
“I guess you heard all that huh?” She asks as her voice quivers.
“I heard some. Why do you put up with this Becky? Why do you put up with him?” I asked angrily. I hadn’t meant for it to come out that way. She looked a little shocked.
Her head fell forward and said in an almost rehearsed voice, “We’re all we’ve got.”
I grabbed her and pulled her into my arms. She collapsed into my arms crying. She felt warm and she gripped me tightly. I wanted to never let her go and I think she didn’t want to ever let me go.
“You deserve better Becky. You deserve the best.” I was fighting back my own tears.
“I don’t deserve anyone or anything. I’m just an idiot who’ll be on the streets.” She sobbed. I pulled her back by her shoulders so she’d look at me.
“That will never happen to you! I won’t let it.” I said slowly while tears appeared on my cheeks.
“Why won’t it?!?” Becky exclaimed.
“Because we’re all we’ve got.” I smiled at her. She hugged me tightly. She smelled like an autumn rain.
My friends are assholes. They’re my assholes though. It’s always been Mike, Tre, Chris, Heather, Jessi, and me. Others came in and out, but the core remained. We always had things to do and people to see.
Every year on the first full week of October we always did something stupid. Just something to shake things up. It was easy to get away with it all too. See the Fall Festival was during the same week and everyone was always on Franklin Street to celebrate.
We were all discussing what we were going to do in the seclusion of my parents garage when I seen something out of the corner of my eye.
“Check it,” I said to the gang as I grabbed the blue fabric. What was at the end of it squirmed. I knew who it was and they did too.
“Well if it isn’t little Davie,” Tre sneared. Tre was a dick and I really didn’t like him. He liked to pick on the kids in the neighborhood. Funny thing though; he used to get picked on by the older kids when we were young.
“Should we shave his head?” Tre laughed. I looked down at Davie. I knew of him. The little kid in the neighborhood who liked to dress up and listen to The Killers. People made fun of him for it but I liked the kid.
“Shut it Tre,” I said quietly, “What’d you hear?” I asked Davie. I was hoping he didn’t hear a lot since what we were planning wasn’t exactly legal.
“That you all were going to the warehouse on Maryland and climbing the roof,” he said quickly and quietly. Before any of us could threaten him into silence he said, “I won’t say anything if you let me come too.”
We all were silent. “How old are you?” a voice asked. That voice was my best friend Chris. I let Davie go.
“I’m 14,” He said in an almost whisper. Mike and the girls looked on. Mike was a tall guy but very quiet. Heather always had a smile on her face no matter if she was mad or happy. That was scary really. Jessi was always skateboarding. We all were around the same age. I was 18 and so was Mike a Chris. Tre was 19 but was held back a year. Heather and Jessi were both 17.
I looked around the group. “What if we beat you until you forget about it?” Tre threatened.
I don’t think Tre expected the hit. I didn’t expect it to come from Heather. “Leave him alone you dork.” she said with that evil smile.
“You can come, but don’t slow us down and if we get caught, you’re dead,” I said. I really didn’t mean it but I had to make sure he understood. Davie nodded and looked at the others.
“We’ll be leaving at 8 tonight. Don’t be late.” Mike said softly. Davie smiled and ran back towards his house. We were excited, even if we had to bring the kid along.
Eight o’clock came and we all met behind my parents garage. I looked around and seen everyone. Davie was right there in front.
“Alright, the warehouse is abandoned. We just need to climb up the ladder to the roof. They never lock it. Then we can relax,” I said shaking the bag I was holding. They all knew what was in it. I had raided my dad’s fridge. He didn’t care if we drank, as long as someone was sober to get us all home.
“Is the baby gonna drink?” Tre sneared.
“Only if he wants to,” I said with disgust in my voice. I really didn’t like him and tonight might be unbearable.
We reached the warehouse in about 10 minutes. I lead the way to the roof and Davie was right behind me. We all sat down and everyone opened a beer. Well everyone except Davie and I.
“Come on Jake, grab one! You brought them.” Jessi laughed.
“Nah, I want to stay sober tonight. Kinda chilly,” I said pulling my jacket hood up.
“Lame,” Tre spouted off. I stood up. I didn’t want to deal with him. I walked over to the edge of the roof where Pigeon Creek and the woods were. I noticed something in the woods. Off the main path of the railroad tracks.
“What are you looking at?” a voice squeaked. It was Davie.
“That shack out there. In the woods. I’ve never seen it before.” I said still looking. You could hear the creepy carnival music from the rides at the Fall Festival just a few blocks over. It was creepy.
“Well let’s go check it out,” Tre said walking from behind us.
“You all want to go?” I asked the gang. I was met with a resounding yes. Seems they were all feeling good. We went down the ladder and into the woods. We walked the train tracks until we seen a clearing. It looked like no one has used it in ages.
We maneuvered around the trees and brush and found we were walking on an abandoned railroad track. After a few minutes we finally seen it. Nothing spectacular about the shack. The walls were full of holes and the windows were broken out.
“Well let’s go in then. Made it this far.” Heather said smiling. Why did she have to do that here? She lead the way into the old shack. There was an old couch that reeked of I don’t know what. Decades of dust lingered on everything. There was a piano there as well. It looked played. Probably the bums that sleep under the bridges around here.
“Let me at it!” Tre said drunkenly as he headed over to the piano. He might be a dick but he can play very well. Greensleeves echoed around us. It was quite somber. A wind blew hard. I seen something out of the corner of my eye and felt something grab my arm.
Davie was staring where I had glimpsed.
“I want to go please. Now.” Davie said half pleading, half demanding.
“Awww is the baby scared?” Tre cackled looking back at us. We all seen it when he turned around. It’s skin was pale and dead looking. I couldn’t see it’s face. I tried to look at it but I couldn’t see it. I did see it’s arm. Long and white with thin fingers that looked abnormally long.
“What are you fuckers staring at?” Tre said loundly. The thunder drowned out what the lightning caused. With a flash of light, that disgusting hand pierced Tre’s chest. Blood poured from him. We screamed and the thunder roared. We all took off running. Jessi and Mike were faster than all of us. Chris was in front of me with Heather but someone was missing. I turned to look to see Davie trip over a felled tree. I ran to him and picked him up.
We all made it back to the garage. It didn’t follow us. No one spoke. No one knew what to say. Mike was pale and shaking. Jessi and Heather were crying. Chris was quiet and he kept looking down the alley. Davie was crying silently. We all slept in the garage that night.
We awoke to our parents and the police. They told us they found Tre’s body in the woods hanging from a tree. His body had been drained of blood and his tongue and eyes were missing. I told them everything. What we had seen. The police looked at us and said there was a fire as well last night. A shack in the woods was destroyed. All that was left was a piano that looked untouched by the flames.
We never heard anything about that incident in the woods again. Davie joined our little gang and we calmed down a bit. I went to the top of the warehouse a few months later. Davie was on the roof already.
“What are you doing here?” I asked walking over to him.
“Listening to the music,” He said with a fear in his voice. I listened carefully and heard it. Greensleeves was playing in the distance. Right where that shack used to be. I put my arm around Davie and we walked back home.
“I always hated that song,” I said as we crossed the bridge.
Dedicated to - heirofbreath for helping me find my passion again, after all these years.
No problem. You’re an awesome person.
“The moon is bright tonight,” I said to Kristen over the loud music of the rock band playing down the alley.
“And big,” She said smiling back.
There we were again; on my roof in the early fall. We were there every night actually. Kristen lived next to me my entire life and we were best friends.
“Want to go down and check out Chuck and the guys play?” she asked with a slight boredom in her voice.
“Do you want to?” I asked back. I knew she didn’t. She hated Chuck. Easy to understand too; he dumped her sister Molly and started dating Molly’s ex-best friend Haley instead.
“Not really,” she sigh “Want to go down to Heinkley’s?” She asked again.
“Sure, I could eat,” I said getting up. Heinkley’s was the burger joint near the docks that we loved with a passion. We were there so much that the waitresses knew our names and orders. I don’t think I’ve seen their menu in a few years.
We climbed down off the roof using the lattice on the wall. We didn’t have to sneak out though. My parents didn’t care where I went as long as I was back by midnight.
Kristen and I walked the entire way almost in silence. It was about twenty blocks from the diner and it was a little chilly. I looked over at Kristen. She was still staring at to moon.
“What’s on your mind? You are never this quiet.” I joked.
“It’s….” she trailed off.
“It’s what?” I asked again, “You can tell me anything you know.”
“What if I told you I liked you?” she said sheepishly.
Being dense I said, “Well I’d say I’d like you too because you are my friend, duh.”
She smiled and said half laughing, “I mean… I like you more than that.”
“I… Uh well…. I’d like you back. I’d like you a lot.” I smiled. She stopped and I stopped. She looked at me and a tear was welling up in her eye.
“What?” I said utterly confused. I did like her more than a friend. I always have but never said it. I liked our friendship the way it was and I never wanted to ever lose that.
She wrapped her arms around my head and kissed me on the cheek. I held her and smiled.
She let go and whispered, “I love you Xavier. I always have.”
“I have too… Just never wanted to change anything between us.” I said looking into her steel-blue eyes. Tears were streaming from them now.
“Let’s go eat. The gang will probably be there.” She said drying the tears from her eyes and jumping on my back.
We walked to the diner and ate with a few of our friends. They all knew what happened. Everyone was happy. It seems this town does that to people. That moon is still bright… and big.
The smell of salt wafted into my nose as I sat down on the bench overlooking the clam sea. The clouds were overcast with a threat of rain. The air chilled when it blew but I didn’t care. This was my life.
I recalled my life until this point and grinned. It must have seemed strange to anyone walking by as to why a man, all alone, would just be smiling on a day like this. They didn’t understand and they would never understand.
My life started by the sea when I first stepped foot on that ship. I remember it like it was yesterday. I had nothing when I walked on to that ship. I Spent all I had to come to this country and I am glad I did.
I met my wife here after I took a job in the shipping warehouses. She was a real dame. She gleamed of high society and elegance. What she saw in me, I’ll never know. I’d like to think it was my whit and humor.
After we were together for a year, I proposed. At this time she had gotten her father to give me a job as a shipmate on one of their fishing vessels. I saved enough money to buy her a decent sized ring and told her father my intentions. That was more nerve racking than buying that ticket.
Her father was very supportive. Her mother was as well. After I proposed to her, we moved to our own apartment. I promised her that we’d have a house one day. I did not disappoint. Her father gave me raise after raise and soon I was working in his office, running the fleet of fishing vessels. I bought us that house and it was overlooking the ocean.
We soon had a son and then a daughter and one more son. I was on top of the world. I had a great life. All of my children went to college and became successful. All of them married and I have a slew of grandchildren. My oldest son took over the family business and my daughter married a politician. My youngest son never married and died young. Wars do that. I wasn’t sad about it though. He lived and loved this country.
My life left me a few years ago. Again I cannot complain. Sixty-five years of marriage and I loved her more every day. We made each other smile and she still makes me smile. I can’t wait to see her again. I know I will.
Until then, I’ll come here everyday and look at the pier that brought me here so many years ago. I was once asked if I was able to and the first great war hadn’t happened, would I have stayed home? I always tell them that that was never my home. My heart yearned for this. The air is still salty and cold, but I was born of the sea
“We should run away,” Anna said suddenly.
“Where on earth would we run too?” I replied sullenly.
“Spain Henry, Spain!” she boomed.
“Why Spain?” I asked with a sigh.
“You know I always wanted to go there. To see the sights. Catch a bull fight. Watch to sun set on the coast. To smile,” she rallied off. She always spoke quickly when she was excited. That made me smile.
“You don’t do that much anymore. I know it’s my fault,” she said quietly.
“Do what anymore?” I asked.
“Smile. You used to smile all the time. I know it’s my fault. I’m sorry,” She sighed.
“It’s not your fault. It will never be your fault,” I said as I smiled again.
“Henry! We’ve been looking for you everywhere,” called a voice. It was Johnathon. I stood up and looked at the gave before me. It read: “Anna McLarson June 6th, 1991 - August 1st, 2012”.
“Everyone’s worried man. Oh…;” he said looking down, seeing the grave. “Henry, it’s been two years. She’d want you to move on,” Johnathon finished.
I stood up and started walking. I wasn’t going to look back. Johnathon called again, “Where are you going Henry?”
I stopped and said quietly, “Spain.”
-L. David Fluty Jr
The sky is gray outside my window. It has been for a few hours, as if the sky wants to weep. I continue to stare out into the world through my window. Nothing is changing and everything looks to be in a state of melancholy. The gargantuan trees are still but there is a slight crisp autumn breeze stirring. I continue to look and I see it again. That shadow that follows me.
It always appears. Whenever I am about to enjoy something, it appears. Ever looming and always getting closer. I cannot let it near me. When I’m around it, I feel cold. Like all the world doesn’t care. I can’t do anything when it appears; this shadow of silence. I can’t finish songs, I can’t watch t.v., I can’t sleep, I can’t do anything.
It’s there again, outside my window. I go to call a friend and they don’t answer. They text that they’re busy. I look up again. The shadow moved closer. As long as I can keep my eye on it and keep track of it, I can control it. But I’m getting tired. Ever so tired. I try to play some music. To keep my mind off of the shadow.
It’s closer now and I don’t want to listen to music anymore. I turn off my playlist. I’m really tired. I call a different friend again. Same story; too busy. I look up. It’s at my window now. I moved to my bed and stare at it. The darkness bleeds into the gray skies. It looks welcoming. Beckoning me to it. Wanting to take me away and I’m really tired.
My phone rang. It’s my friends. They aren’t busy anymore and are wanting to come over. I tell them let’s meet somewhere. They agree. I’ll go to them. It never follows me when they are around.
I laugh when I’m with them. We have fun. I still think about that shadow. It’ll be waiting for me when I get home. It always is. I’m not tired anymore though.
L. David Fluty
The American people are slow to wrath, but when their wrath is once kindled it burns like a consuming flame.Theodore Roosevelt