Friday, April 27, 2012

Not quite #fridayflash fiction: Ghosts

"Eeckkk!" said Lemon. "There's a woman. I just saw her crossing the floor." How can the place he occupies be described? If you focus on its texture for a while, it appears quite solid, but there are waves on all sides, up down, left, right, forward, backward. Everything appears identical at first. Waverings bits of light. If you think specks, they become specks. If you think waves, they elongate and snake - around and around. The appearance of the place sails through possibilies. The acoustics of the place was similarly open to persuation. Snatches of music, disembodies voices came and went, without seeming incomplete. They just shifted as the attention of the hearers did. Other sensory impressions wove in and out of an everchanging dance of perception. "Interesting." said Raft. "Describe her to me." "She is a shadow. All grey and stilted, as if there is something hindering her. Something holding her back, keeping her from manifesting fully. She walks heavily. But she seems quite thin." "Is that how you see her?" Raft asked. "Look again." Lemon himself wore the appearance of a small youngish monk in a robe. He kept his face round and blank of expression, and saw Raft as a bit of a rogue, a canvas across which wry smiles, raised eyebrows and frowns of irony painted themselves with ease. Each feature, the moustache, the beard, the slightly hooked nose had the potential for additional emotional punctuation. "Her hair is long, curvy and Titian red. It mostly covers her face but I think her nose is quite long, longer than average. She wears a gown of some sort." He squinted. "Above the chest, there is a glittery motif, but otherwise it is plain and seagreen." "Very good," said Raft. If you asked either whether they heard the conversation, they might not have been able to answer, but each voice was distinct, and spoke of the person as well as his words. "You see her also?" Lemon asked eagerly. "I've been looking at her for a while now. I'm surprised that you see her. Her name is Tiffany." , "You know her?" "She is... was my fiancee." Before, Lemon and Raft had not been acquainted. They gravitated towards each other, settled into a conversation and grew comfortable in it. They may have been at it for some time, but time itself wove in and out of their world. They were still trying to work out whether this was in fact their first meeting or not. "Why won't she talk to us? Wait... oh! Now, I see. She is..." "A ghost." "No. Yes. Must we use that word? Raft shrugs. He said several things, none of them verbal. "Why is she so sad?" Lemon asked. "Because she longs..." "For you?" "She longs for the warmth of a fresh wound, but all she has is a stale scar. She comes back out of habit. I can hear her words. I miss him. He is always with me. How can both statements be true. I have no trouble at all 'being with her' but maybe the real answer is that she is not always with me anymore." "How sad," said Lemon. "I always thought it was the other way around. That we haunt the living." Raft's face was a work of art, the interaction between his brow and his moustache all but forming full sentences. "That kind of traffic goes both ways. In our world, they are incomplete in some way. At times, she almost appears to notice me... Other times... Look, she fades again." Lemon shivered. He had the suspicion that for the moment his face was not bland enough. "Let's talk about something else," he said.

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