Where one man’s trash is another man.
(a Web Serial)
From The RV Files
By Clara Bush
Episode 5, Chapter 1
(for Episode 1 click here and for Episode 2 here)
(Rated Mature for Adult content)
Spooky stumbled into the safety of her rig. Tried to open her computer but fumbled. Her hands shook so badly she wondered if she had the outset of Parkinson’s. After three attempts, finally she typed. What the hell!? I’m crazy. I must be going crazy. I didn’t see what I saw. I couldn’t have. Things like this don’t happen.
“You’re right. Things like this don’t happen. Not to normal folk. But you are anything but normal,” Shayd said.
“Then I’m crazy. Certifiable. After all these years of being on the fringe of sanity, I finally made the leap.”
“You’re not crazy. If you’re crazy, we’re all crazy. Ain’t that right fellas?” Shayd said.
Spooky imagined Chetan and Singer nodding in agreement with Shayd, like she always imagined they did, in times past, when strangeness came to visit.
“Then why doesn’t Dovie see the RV park the way I do. You knew, didn’t you? That’s why you made me invite her.”
“We suspected. We needed to be sure, so we can protect you from the park—,” Shayd said.
“And from those who don’t see what you see,” Singer hummed.
“But we don’t know the answers, yet,” Chetan said.
“You three, in your almighty, all knowing, spiritual selves don’t know the answers? Then how in the hell am I supposed to survive this…this…whatever it is? Wait. Protect me? How much danger are we in? Do we need to leave?”
“You should probably leave. Yes. But how would you convince Brodie and Dovie. They don’t see what you see,” Shayd said.
No one ever saw what Spooky saw. Or felt what she felt. Or experienced the strangeness that dominated her world. She knew telling Brodie meant opening herself up to the discussion of therapy. Therapy she didn’t believe she needed. She’d learned early in their marriage to keep the weirdness to herself for fear of Brodie’s threat of sending her to a psychiatrist if she didn’t stop all her nonsense. She feared being medicated most of all. The pills. Her parents had insisted she take pills. The meds merely clouded her communications with her friends, but never dispelled them. And she needed her friends in full strength now. They were all she had. They advised her. They were her therapists. Because they felt what she felt. Knew what she knew. Saw what she saw.
“What should I do?”
“You need to touch the girl. When you picked her up from the pool, I captured a brief glimpse of her essence. But it wasn’t long enough,” Chetan said. “The boy called himself, Kappa?”
“Weird name,” she mumbled.
“Perhaps, it’s not a name. Among the ancients there are legends of water spirits. River children. Look up, Utamaro, on that computer of yours,” Chetan advised.
“You speak to the ancients, do you?” Spooky asked. She never really knew where Chetan gained all his information on the occult. She assumed he lived it. “Anyway, I don’t think they’re river children. There’s not a hint of a river, or creek, or lake anywhere close to Prayer Town. But here goes. What’s the guy’s name? Spell it.” She typed it into her browser. “He’s a Japanese artist. So?”
“Type his name and Kappa.”
Artwork popped up in images. In one of the paintings, a Japanese woman sat on a rock and looked on as another woman—underwater—was being raped by two demons.
“The women in the picture are Japanese pearl divers,” Chetan said.
“But the creatures in the painting are demon-like, not children.”
“One artist’s interpretation of Kappa,” Singer hummed.
Spooky slumped over her computer. “You’re telling me the stuff artists dream and then paint is real.”
“Who said they dreamed it?” Chetan asked. “Perhaps, they experienced it. Or something similar, and they allowed their imaginations to forge the art. Maybe this artist was like you, has friends like us, and experiences those things on Earth that no one can explain.”
“I wish I thought there were others like me.”
Shayd touched her cheek. “There are, love. But like you, they’re afraid to talk about their gift. Those like you have been forced by society into secrecy for fear of condemnation.”
“Think of all the women who were burned at the stake for witchcraft. Why would any of you publicly acknowledge your gift? Unless, it’s for profit,” Chetan said.
“But those who are in it for the profit, are not truly gifted,” Singer hummed.
“I’m not a witch. I can’t cast a spell or cook up a potion.”
“No. But you are not entirely of this Earth either,” Singer hummed.
This was the first she’d heard the revelation of not being of Earth. “I’m here. I’m on Earth. Where else am I?”
“You are with us,” Shayd said.
She waited for some other answer. To, in some way—after all these years—help her to understand. “Where am I? Answer me that.” She waited but no reply came. “What? Was that not a good question?” Crying never came easy for her, but tears brimmed and trickled down her cheek. She felt trapped and, for the first time, alienated from her friends. They knew. Knew things she didn’t know but needed to know for her own sanity. Why do they keep so many secrets from me? she wondered.
Brodie had never been a companion to her. In their marriage, she was the caregiver. He was the taker. By the time this discovery pelted her in the head like a frozen snowball, she was too old to rectify her condition. Chilled and stunned, she wiped off the cold wet and vowed to not get even but to endure. It was quite by accident she uncovered numerous text messages from two women who called him their heart’s desire. Each had set up clandestine rendezvous, which he carefully scheduled on his work calendar so as not to hoist any red flags in front of her. One of the women was his secretary. One was an old high school flame. Neither knew about the other.
She resolved to stick out the marriage for Dovie’s sake. She assumed Brodie had done the same. Why else didn’t he leave her for those other women? She recognized she wasn’t the easiest person to be married to. Her night terrors alone would have been enough to chase most men away. And then there was her sensitivity toward the supernatural.
After Spooky accepted her marriage as an endurance rather than a partnership, she amused herself with the detail she knew of both mistresses, but they didn’t know of each other. She’d sneak into the bathroom with Brodie’s phone when he was asleep, read the texts, and followed his every betrayal to the very end. He never suspected her of such a sneaky invasion of his privacy. And she never told him, even after he ended the affairs.
There was another indiscretion. The girl at the coffee bar in his office building. She served Brodie his expresso every morning. She was much younger and the affair lasted all of two encounters. But coffee girl hurt Spooky the most. Even though she prided herself of how well she’d maintained her appearance over the years, how could she compete with someone still in their prime? People told Spooky she looked young for her age. But she didn’t look twenty-five or even forty anymore.
She buried the heartache. Shayd, Chetan, and Singer comforted her. Loved her. And talked her out of the blues. Now, however, in her current state, they seemed less like saviors and more like mischievous interlopers. Would her life have been different without them?
Shayd was the first to make his introduction into her world. In the fifth grade, fellow classmates spied on Spooky as she sat by herself at lunch, talking to someone they couldn’t see.
In high school—though she was considered okay-looking with her long auburn hair, green eyes, and lean figure—no boys asked her out. They didn’t want to take the time from their sports and popularity to get to know the freaky girl. The smarter kids—clever in math and science—were too logic oriented to befriend the weird girl who believed in ghosts, monsters, and otherworldly things.
Didn’t matter to Spooky at the time. Shayd filled her world with his love. All the things girls her age fantasied about, he bestowed on her. Attention, romance, and desire were hers. He made her believe she was the most beautiful and most important thing in his ghostly life. What more did she need? She didn’t lack confidence because she had something no one else had. And Shayd made sure she appreciated how special she was. After graduation, he taught her the art of lovemaking. Introduced her to the relevant erotica literature she needed to read. Told her, she’d want to marry one day, and sex was an important part of any pairing.
She guessed that was why Brodie married her. He overlooked her eccentricities, because he was enamored by the sex, and her lack of inhibitions in the bedroom, by the fireplace, on the kitchen counter, on the dining room table, and any other place Brodie wanted. He was the first living person to say he loved her. Naturally, she responded to Brodie in a way she hoped would convince him she deserved his love.
Her parents had been too put off by their daughter’s weirdness to show her affection. They were busy trying to fix her, make her right, make her fit the norm, and didn’t appreciate she was different and always would be. They died before she met Brodie.
Chetan entered Spooky’s life when Dovie became ill. She took a walk around the hospital grounds while tests were being run on her daughter. She watched the morning sun flicker through the openings in the leaves of a huge oak tree. It was a warm morning. She wiped the sweat from her upper lip and was going to pray when a cooling breeze came from the south. She felt a rush as if the breeze had entered her body and lifted her to a higher plane of existence. She no longer felt the need to pray. Dovie would be fine, Chetan told her. Her daughter was released the same day. What the doctors thought was a brain tumor in the first CT scan, had mysteriously disappeared in the second, more in-depth scan. But it was no mystery to Spooky. She thanked Chetan for her daughter’s miraculous recovery.
When did she first experience Singer? She tried to recall. He emerged during the height of Brodie’s extramarital activities. He brought her peace and reminded her humans are imperfections of what was supposed to be perfection. He hummed until all the anger she felt became acceptance anointed with a little forgiveness.
Spooky wiped away stray tears and cradled her head in her arms over the keyboard. She remembered how she came to be this particular card holder in her so-called life. And when her eyelids swelled, becoming too heavy to stay open, one thought pushed her into sleep’s depth. How different my life would be without my haunts and how fucking boring.
If you are just now joining us, catch up here:
The reason I began writing a blog was to create a brand for my fiction. After almost four years of blog writing and much research, it dawned on me, I’m not doing what I love doing. Yes, blogging is a form of writing, but my love is creating characters with flaws, placing them in scary situations, and adding a little romance. Which is not the definition of a blog. My love is being so far up my imagination I’m living in a different dimension where I’m one of my characters and the other characters are leading me on a path to discovery.
As a way of keeping my blog active, and immersing myself in what I love most, I’m adding FREE FICTION to my blog posts. NOT FREE as in take for your own free, it is copyrighted, but FREE FICTION as in read and enjoy. It costs you nothing but a little time and perhaps, a supportive comment. I like supportive comments.
When I began writing, my goal was not to get rich or even make a living. My goal was to share with others my worlds. And I thought, if I had just one person read what I wrote, then my goal would be met, and I’d be the richest person ever.
Why FREE FICTION? As writers, we’re told not to give away our writing. People don’t treasure what is free. I was told. But then the light came on. I have so many story ideas rambling around in my head I’ll never get them all written. When a writer writes a book, whether it’s self-published or traditionally published, the editing and marketing takes a tremendous amount of time. No time is left to start the next book.
Free Fiction allows me to release some of those pent-up stories for others to read. No hassle. Hell Town RV Park will appear on a regular basis until the novella is complete. It is a work in progress. Feel free to comment on the discovery you hope the characters make. Hope you enjoy.
The RV Files is fiction. Any characters and events depicted in this book are fictitious. Any similarity to real persons, extraterrestrials, demons, werewolves, or ghosts—living or dead—is coincidental and not intended by the author.
Copyright ©: 2017 by Clara Bush
All rights reserved. Published by TURTLE TOP COVE LP.
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