The Restless Dead

bigstock-beautiful-woman-with-stone-lik-12160685Lindsay and Michael walked along a back lane to the banks of the river Swale. Other than the sound of birds chattering, it was peaceful, almost like being on another planet. The fire and it’s aftermath still tormented Lindsay’s brain, but the surroundings were soothing. Neither of them spoke as they walked along the well-worn track by the river.

“There’s a clearing up ahead with some big rocks we can sit on, the river is shallower there so if this is a ploy to drown me, you’d struggle.” Lindsay said.

“Why on earth would I drown you?” Michael asked.

“I don’t know. Why are you here?”

They continued in silence until they found the clearing, and found a couple of boulders to sit on. Michael made pebbles skip across the glassy surface. It irritated Lindsay. She was on edge and wanted to know why he kept following her.

“We’re not here to play, what is it you want with me? And who the hell is Colleen? I can’t believe I’m even asking. I must be losing my mind. If it’s not bad enough seeing images of my dead friend, now I’m seeing the ghost of some Irish woman I’ve never met. Is this your doing?”

Lindsay began to cry again, a sad hopeless sound. Michael said nothing until her sobs subsided. He knew she wouldn’t listen. They didn’t know they were being watched. Eventually Lindsay stopped crying.

“Sorry! Sorry for everything. You wouldn’t be able to see any of this if you weren’t tuned in to that sort of thing. I’m not making you see anything. I’d give anything to turn back the clock and not have you suffer like this. I can’t! I’m just trying to help.”

“What are you trying to help with? Do you know who started the fire? Do you know who killed my friends? If you do, why are you talking to me instead of the police?”

“It’s not that simple.”

“Nothing ever is with you bloody Irish. You try to blame religion for all of your hatred, but I don’t believe any of it. I thought God was about love not hate.”

Michael dropped his head into his hands and sighed.

“This has nothing to do with religion, or the IRA. It’s about me brother John. Colleen was his wife. She’s dead!”

“I’m sorry, how does that tie up with this….”

There was a loud splash in the water at the other side of the river. Michael jumped to his feet.

“Come on, we have to go.”

“Why it was just a fish jumping?” Lindsay stood up and looked into the water. Two reflections looked back at her. The head of a beautiful, but pale woman peered over her shoulder. Lindsay almost fell as she twisted around to see who was behind her. Michael was the only person there. She looked across the river to see the shape of a man disappearing among the trees. Michael grabbed her hand urgently. “Come on, we have to go now.” He said urgently.

Michael, Michael, where’s my Johnny boy. Why can’t I see him?

Dead of July Another book by Sandra Thompson. Buy it on Amazon.

Dead of July by Sandra Thompson

 

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Sheila’s Story – The Brick!

 

Hanging out the washing

This is just another snippet of a memory. Sheila was still about four years old (give or take a couple of months).

In the late fifties, early sixties, the only source of heating was the coal fire, which was usually lit in one room. Sheila was asleep on the sofa, probably because it was too cold to go to bed. She had on a long thick nightie which came right down to her toes. It had a belt around the waist which Sheila like to tie in knots, I think it was her version of worry beads. She worried about her mam all of the time.

Sheila’s mam sat on the end of the sofa, by Sheila’s feet, keeping them warm. Sheila’s dad was sitting in the arm-chair. Sheila’s brothers weren’t home often, but this cold November, Bobby was home. He had been out for the night with friends and Sheila woke up as the back door closed, and Bobby entered the room.  Sheila opened her eyes and smiled. She loved it when her brother was home. She couldn’t have foreseen what was about to happen.

As Bobby entered the room, Sheila’s dad catapulted out of the chair and started yelling at him like a crazy man. Sheila didn’t move, she felt her mam’s hands on her feet. Her mam probably didn’t even realize she was clutching Sheila’s feet, but she was. Bobby looked stunned, and asked what he had done. “You woke your sister, she was sleeping, you woke her”.

Sheila had made no indication to her dad that she was awake, and she was happy to be awake. He mam didn’t move, but hissed “Bobby, go to bed”. Bobby started to walk up the stairs and his dad stood at the bottom yelling at him. “Leave me alone” Bobby shouted, but it didn’t do any good, just made his dad more angry.  Bobby was nineteen and a tall young man. If he had wanted to, he could have turned around and knocked his dad to the floor, but he wasn’t violent and he just wanted to go to bed. Sheila’s mam was crying.

What happened next will be stamped in Sheila’s mind forever. He dad went out into the cold dark back yard and picked up a brick.  For a while he threw it from hand to hand, goading Bobby to come outside. Doors open from neighboring houses, but no one dared to come and tackle the angry (and probably drunk) man. After about five minutes there was a loud bang, and the yelling and goading stopped. Sheila’s dad came back inside, grabbed his coat from the hallway and left. He was probably going to the ‘Workingmans club’ to top up the alcohol in his bloodstream.

Bobby came downstairs to make sure we were OK and then everyone went to bed and if they weren’t asleep when the drunken man returned, they pretended to be.

The next morning Sheila’s mam was hanging out washing in the back yard. Sheila was watching out of the window, and she saw her mam drop the washing basket on the floor and go over to something on the ground, although Sheila has tried to block it out of her mind, she saw what her mam found. Sheila’s brother went outside, he was going to the corner shop, but instead he knelt down by his mam. They were out there for a little while. When they came back in they looked very sad and told Sheila what she already knew, that her kitten was dead, they said a ladder had fallen on top of it while it was playing in the yard.

Sheila knew different. The stepladder was in the shed and her mam had found the fluffy mangled bundle on the ground in the corner of the back yard, with a brick on top of it.  She knew because she had been watching out of the window.

Sheila stopped loving her dad for good!

Inside my head!

This is it!

So you have all noticed the new header on my site.  Unfortunately I could only use a part of the complete work of art, as there is only a certain amount of space there.  I had to choose which section to use.  A hard choice!  That is why I had to show you the full-sized version.  Look at this, the longer you look, the more you see.  Thank you my talented niece, for spending so much time putting this together for me.  I have put a link to Shelly’s web side under my blog roll.  Her talent’s extend way beyond art work.  Check her out for yourself! Love this work of art….it shows you all what is going on inside my head. I have lived with this since I was about five years old. Is there any wonder I don’t sleep? Disturbing and wonderful.  Thanks Shelly!