And Still Another First Page

This is from yet another one of my WIP with no title. Something different. I’m really loving this story. I’m writing both this story and the last Winter Creek one at the same time. Eventually I’ll get one or the other of them finished.

For the first time since her grandmother’s death, Jane Bellwood slept well. No nightmares invaded her rest, causing her to moan and cry out in the dead of night. No spectral man or woman, no boy or girl, no child screamed in her mind for help. She awoke refreshed and rested.

Finally remember how to block spirits without me?

Crazy Lady Helen McWilliams’s voice broke through her peace. “Stay out of my head, Grandma.”

Her only answer was joyful laughter.

But her adopted grandmother was right. She had finally found a way to keep the figurative door in her head shut at night once again. And it had only taken her less than three years, twenty-three years after experiencing her first true-to-life nightmare. That particular morning she’d awoken to more than just blood on her sheets and cramps roaring over her lower stomach and down her legs. Her doctor stepfather had given her some medication for the pain and her mother gave her a pad—and someone unknown showed her how to build an image of a door and close it on the invasive thoughts threatening to drive her insane. Out of desperation she’d tried to do as the images suggested, finally achieving a level of peace during her waking hours.

Six years later she met the woman who’d sent her those freeing images in the waiting area of her father’s emergency room, and she’d started to learn how to keep that door close while asleep.

Crazy Lady Helen had rammed her way into her life, and hadn’t left it since.

Even three years dead, she still haunted her.

Oh, you poor, poor thing.

Jane shook her head at the clear voice speaking in her head, covering over the thousands of vaguer thoughts from her mind.

You’re the one keeping me here, honey.

“No, I’m not.”

Ghostly laughter spilled through her. But I want to be here, Jane. I’m not ready to let go yet.

Will you ever be?

Not until you don’t need me anymore, honey.

Jane sighed. “Go away now, Helen.”

Only laughter sounded in her head now.

Crazy Lady Helen was right, though. She’d needed her then and she still needed her now.

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