I belong to an on-line writers group at The Soul Food Cafe
and one of our projects was to come up with stories and artwork based on
I ended up with a little collection of fun stories and two interesting characters- Sunny Longyear and her friend Waldgrave Tillanghast. I liked them so much I think I’m going to re-write their adventures and start posting them here considering Halloween is just around the corner it seems like a fun idea.
So here is Part One
a series of adventures
the works of
Mr E.A. Poe
There I was, standing alone in front of a door that was nailed shut from the inside.
What kind of nut job, I wondered as I poked my finger against one of the nails that had made its way to the outside of the door, would wall themselves up inside of a house?
I guess I was about to find out.
So I backed up and kicked at the door- hard- and no I didn’t expect it to do anything dramatic like fly open. I just wanted to give whatever was on the other side to – you know – run.
I must have kicked at it a half dozen times.
I’ll bet it wasn’t running though, I thought with each kick.
I’ll bet it was on the other side of the door laughing at me- and then I thought to myself:
What am I doing here-
I’m going to save Waldgrave-who just happens to be a ghost- and right now I have to wonder why. Because, to be perfectly honest, I don’t really understand why I’m about to save a dead guy from something I that could be anything- anything with big teeth and knives.
Yeah. I’ll whatever is on the other side of that door with Waldgrave is very handy with knives and meat hooks because that’s exactly the kind of luck I’ve had for my entire life.
And then it came to me:
All I have to do is just turn around and walk back the way I came- right now one foot in front of the other and who would ever know?
I could go back to my nice quiet life as a Funeral Director and wear my sensible dark suits with my black engineer boots ( hey, it’s not like anyone ever looks at my feet- trust me on that one) and in that life dead people are just that…
Most of the time.
It would be so easy I heard a voice say in my head to just walk away.
I looked around and slammed my hand over my mouth, to keep from yelling because where the hell did that thought come from?
Give Waldgrave up to something called The Black House and walk away no- slink away like some slinky coward?
I’ll tell you where that thought came from-
it was either from the house or Waldgrave and I’m not sure which of those two things scared me more- that house getting into my head or Waldgrave trying to let go.
I point at the door and say, “It’s obvious you are not going to cooperate. “
Think, think, think I told myself.
I walked to one of the boarded up windows and pushed just a little.
I took a deep breath and this time when I swung at the boards I followed through.
All the way through.
I’m standing all alone ( please let me be alone ) in this nasty dark house and all I can think to say is, ” Pizza Delivery. “
I roll my eyes up because from down the hall I can hear a familiar voice say,
” You know, people aren’t laughing with you Sunny, they’re mostly laughing at you. “
” Aren’t you supposed to be in a cemetery? ” I say to Waldgrave to keep him talking because I have no intentions of opening any of these doors unless I have too.
” There’s a Crypt in the basement- “
I follow his voice to a not so awful looking door- the only one that looks like it ever gets used and I tap on it and say, before I open it, ” Are you decent? “
” Get it in here you stupid twit, we have a problem.”
Unlike the rest of the house this room is not nasty and dark, but it feel like it all the same. There are lit candles all over the room and I can sort of see that I’m in a library and that there’s a dead man sitting behind a giant desk with about a hundred pictures in little silver frames in front of him.
I don’t need to look to know they’re probably all of the same person.
” You killed him, I think you scared him to death. He thought you were some woman…I think he murdered her. He wanted her to come for him but he was afraid she would come for him at the same time. He dreamed about her even when he was awake.”
I don’t have anything to say.
And then I think of something, ” Help me out here just a little exactly where are you right now? Picture, book or statue any idea? “
“Your lack of empathy leaves me speechless Sunny, it really does.”
” If only. ” I say to myself- but you know loud enough so that I can be sure Waldgrave can hear me.
” I’m not in a book.”
Waldgrave’s surprised sounding voice is coming from right behind me.
I look and there above desk on a shelf is a statue of some guy’s head. ” You know, I’m not sure how this thing with you works, but if you think I’m going to drag you around like that you can forget it.”
” Look down. “
I do, right into the face of the dead man and he is looking back at me.
” Oh no.” I say
” Oh yes.” Says the dead man with Waldgrave’s voice.
” Hey. I’m pretty sure you’re not supposed to do that.”
” Hey. I’m pretty sure you’re right. ” Waldgrave is starting to sound a little hysterical.
Just as an FYI- hysertics are contagious because I don’t sound like I’m in full control of myself when I scream back: ” I thought you said before you could only take possession of inanimate objects.”
Waldgrave points at the dead man’s-well his face and shrieks ” you can’t get much more inanimate then a corpse Sunny!”
” Well, damn Waldgrave get the hell out of there.” I yell at him.
” Gladly. But I can’t. I’ve been trying and guess what? I am STUCK!”
I run over to the fireplace and grab a poker and when I turn around I tell Waldgrave ” Okay, don’t move. I have an idea. “
Waldgrave isn’t in the mood to follow directions. Instead he jumps up, runs around the desk and grabs me buy shoulders and shakes me hard- which makes me really angry and he says, like I haven’t heard it a million times already,
” I am trapped inside of a corpse!”
” I’m going to fix that Waldgrave. ” I swing the poker at Waldgraves newly acquired head and then…
he reaches out and grabs my wrist and shakes it until I drop the poker.
I’m sure I look just as confused as he does.
With one hand pressed against his shoulder to steady him I reach slowly out for his neck with my other hand. Waldgrave flinches just a little but he figures out what it is I’m going to do and lifts his chin up
I put my fingers against his neck.
Then I put my hand on his chest and snap it back.
” You are in so much trouble Waldgrave. “
” Yes.” he says ” We are.”