I can’t believe it’s already the end of NaBloPoMo & HiveBloPoMo! As I’ve whined… errr, mentioned a few times in the past week or so, I had so many things I’d planned to post but didn’t get the chance to, like a new flash fiction piece or two. However, I do have a séance scene snippet from my unpublished novel Wrecked from 2011 that I’ve reworked a few of times over the years, with the intention of eventually posting it as another bit of a teaser. I figured that would work for today as a Flashback Friday fiction offering.
One of the reasons I wanted to just finally post this is to remind me that I really want to do two things in the very near future. The first is to finish editing the novel so I can get it published (especially since I need to make good on a promise of sorts) and the second is to set up another writing community on Hive that’s geared towards welcoming my writing/blogging friends on other social media. More on that later (aka, this is an announcement of an announcement…lol).
Now with all of that being said, here’s the blurb to my book, to give you an idea of what this is all about…
Synopsis: Maeve Sawyer, a thirty-something Eclectic Wiccan, has been sailing the calm waters of life as a college librarian. But when she takes on a special project for her hometown library in Magnolia, Massachusetts, not only is her love life capsized, but she’s cast in the middle of a ghostly mystery involving a century old shipwreck.
And now, here’s the short scene…
“So how does a real séance work?” Betsy asked as she settled herself on the floor next to the candles and crystals I’d pulled out of my suitcase. Mrs. Kelley (the owner of the inn) had kindly giving me the biggest room they had available, so there was plenty of space to set up a proper circle, but I didn’t think she’d take kindly to me scribbling on the polished hardwood floor. I decided to skip that step.
“Pretty much like the ones we had as kids, only with better props,” I replied, trying to lighten the mood. To be fair, Bets was in a good head space for doing a working like this – excited, but cautious. I was more the opposite – dreading possibility the feeling in my gut might be right, but curious enough to throw caution to the wind. Still, I reminded myself I’d come a long way in my magical studies since my last Ouija board encounter, and figured it was worth the slight risk to find out what was going on with the mysterious ghost woman by the ocean.
I did my usual pre-ritual prep – a few shout outs to the four corners followed by protection bubbles first around me, then Bets, then the entire room. I swirled my hands around the board, imagining I was saging the negative energy away (again, wanting my deposit back on the room), then told Bets to scoot closer to the board and put her two index fingers on the planchette. Then I reached out to place my own on it as well.
The moment I touched it, the room tilted sideways and I felt a disconnected, am I awake or am I dreaming kind of feeling. Next thing I knew, I was laying flat on the floor, only it wasn’t the floor – it was some kind of liquid. For a split second I had the horrifying thought I’d lost control of my bladder (because forget all the other weirdness, the embarrassment of having an accident on the antique floor was the much bigger priority to my more-than-slightly addled brain). That thought was quickly replaced by the realization I was inexplicably sinking down and as the floor-that-had-become water closed over my face, I passed out.
When I came to, the first thing I saw was Betsy’s worried face hoovering over me. Then I noticed a very concerned looking Mrs Kelley looking over her shoulder. I started to sit up, and Betsy pushed me back down, saying she’d called for help, and I shouldn’t move until it got there.
“Don’t be silly. I just got overwhelmed and fainted. I’m fine, okay? And this hardwood floor really isn’t as cushy as it looks, so could I at least move over to the bed to lay down?”
After a moment, Betsy agreed, and helped me into a standing position before maneuvering me over to the bed. As she propped up pillows under my head, I looked over at the woman I thought was Mrs Kelley, and realized she was actually a little bit older, and my woozy brain had been fooled by her staff uniform. She smiled at me, no doubt relieved that I didn’t cause any damage to the floor, and I said to her, “thank you for being concerned.”
“Being concerned? Are you kidding me right now? I’m pretty much freaking out! That was one hell of a flop you took, even from a sitting position. I wouldn’t be surprised if you ended up with a goose egg for your troubles.”
“Yeah, I know you’re freaking out, Bets, but I was talking to the housekeeper.”
Betsy shot a look over her shoulder, then looked at me strangely as she asked, “What housekeeper?”
The world threatened to tilt again as I stared at the woman standing behind her. After a brief moment, the not-a-housekeeper started a bit, and said, “Oh dear, you mean me? Yes, you can see me. But she can’t.”
I saw the woman’s lips move as she spoke, but her voice bypassed my ears and somehow echoed directly in my brain. It was weirdly neutral – no sign of an accent that I could hear, and it sounded soft and unemotional. Almost like it was coming from a radio, but not as staticy. I probably turned nineteen shades of white at that point, because Betsy looked even more worried, and the woman quickly said in her brain talk way, “It’s okay, I know it’s a bit strange at first, but you’ll get used to it in no time.”
Now that I was staring at her, I could see that she wasn’t dressed in a uniform. She was wearing some kind of period garb – had I paid attention in history class, I’d probably be able to pinpoint the exact year. The more I stared, the more I realized what was even odder about her. At first glance, she looked as solid and as real as Betsy. But her… edges were just ever so slightly blurred. It was like someone took a picture of her, then used a tiny bit of a filter to make her appear just the tiniest bit out of focus…
I hope you enjoyed my short Séance scene and happy Flashback Friday!
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