This original story is inspired by a scene in the novel, Jasper Jones
I don’t know why she came to me. Did she need help, or did she have nowhere else to go? Whatever the reason, she scared the living daylights out of me.
This was the coldest winter I could remember. Icicles hung from my windowsill, reflecting the moon’s haunting beam.
This night was no different, and when the eerie silhouette of an angel rapped at my window abruptly, I leapt from my chair, spilling hot coffee down my chest.
An angel. A beautiful creature but drained of life.
Her pale face reminded me of someone I knew.
The gold spiral threads resting on her shoulders in perfect ringlets brought the memory of a former schoolmate reported missing, causing a wave of panic within our sleepy little community.
The beautiful figure moved from my window, only to visit yet again the following night at the same time. Why me? It scared me that I was being stalked by this presence but also filled me with curiosity.
That’s when I began to believe that perhaps, ghosts really did exist.
No. I don’t believe in ghosts. Well, not entirely.
I sit on the spectral fence, dangling my legs on either side, wondering which way to jump. I think I may be here for a while.
Back to the girl. I remembered but wished I didn’t.
Her name was Charlotte Kingston.
She was my lost love; I loved her from the moment I laid eyes upon her. She left me heartbroken, though, and I hated her for that.
I just wished our paths had never crossed. I wish I had never looked into her hypnotic eyes, fallen for her enticing smile or yearned for her to whisper in my ear again, making my stomach stir with butterflies.
I wilfully erased her from my memory. I wish I had never known her. And I hated her.
She was the former schoolmate who had disappeared without a trace. Vanished.
The night air grew still as I drifted off into a restless sleep. I woke in fright; my heart was pounding rapidly. Was it indeed Charlotte? What did she want from me after all this time?
3:51 a.m. My phone began to cry. The annoying, vibrating screech provoked me to answer with irritation. Before I was given a chance to speak, the sound of a raspy voice overwhelmed me with terror. The ghostly whisper reached the depths of my soul, filling my mind with images of a place that was unrecognisable to me. As if being forced by some supernatural force, I rose from my bed, leaving my warm cabin barefoot and in my pyjamas. I did not know where I was going or why, but somehow, I was being directed to the surrounding forest.
The full moon lit the chilly ground like a candle in a dark room, dull and haunting.
I ran. I ran so fast I could barely feel the icy forest floor, and for a short while, it felt like I was flying. The voice continued to beckon me, navigating me to the hiding place in the woods.
Drooping branches struck ghoulish poses, animating in the breeze.
An enormous jarrah tree shielded itself, hidden behind the camouflage of smaller trees.
The voice continued to whisper to me, guiding me.
“Through there. Just a little further….”
Pushing my way through the brush, I finally reached the spot. When my eyes had fully adjusted, I looked up. Fear overtook me as I saw it.
My legs weakened, and I dropped to the ground in shock. The whisper turned into a loud screech, mixed with cries of fear and sorrow. It made me sick to my stomach.
I had found her.
There she was—the beautiful figure who visited my window all week.
It was Charlotte. And she was hanging, still and lifeless.
A noose made of vine around her broken neck; her head was resting slightly to the side. Deep scratches and bruises covered her legs; her white nightdress was spattered with blood.
Tears filled my eyes. I admit it. I was still deeply in love with her.
And when I told her I could not live without her, I was not exaggerating.
No one would ever find her. She was too far in the forest, too remote and obscure an area for anyone to consider looking.
She was lost to the living forever.
The voice called to me once again; its tone had changed. It was not haunting but seductive, happy. Butterflies. It was Charlotte talking to me.
Tomorrow, another will be reported missing.
But I will be where I’ve always wanted to be. Beside the girl of my dreams, hand in hand, in this, our special place, where no one would find us. Forever.
I now know why she came to me. She no longer wanted to be alone.
This was the coldest winter I could remember. The rising sun’s rays permeate through the wet leaves, making them glisten and reflect. It was a beautiful sight. I closed my eyes when a beam of sunlight touched my face. Charlotte was touching my cheek.
A tear rolled down my cheek as I jumped off that spectral fence.
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