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A Ghost of an Echo-Part Two


Greetings and salutations fans of Jen Wylie!.  I have a special treat for you all today.  I’m sure most of you are familiar with Jen’s short stories.  She has a new short story and has decided to share some of it with her fans.  It’s called A Ghost of an Echo, and from the title I’m sure you can tell it’s part of her echo series.  The first part of the story can be found here, but the SECOND PART can be found, yup you guessed it.  Right here.  I have the honor of hosting the second part of the story my friends.  So, ENJOY! When she opened her eyes she stared up into darkness. It took at moment for her to realize dark was perfectly normal, it had been nighttime after all. However then her other senses slowly returned.

 

SMELL came first, wet grass and rain and…gas? Sound next, the steady downpour of rain and a strange metallic popping sound. The sense of touch came last, strangely distant, the simple feel of the hard ground beneath her.

That wasn’t right. She had been in the car, driving home with Brian, when he’d lost control when lightening had struck the road in front of them. Had she been thrown clear? If so, why couldn’t she feel the rain? Panic rose within her as she realized nothing hurt. Something should have, all of her should have.

A whimper escaped her lips as she struggled to orient herself, to get her arms and legs to move. With relief they finally did, for a moment she had wondered if she had been paralyzed in the accident. The accident, the car… Brian!

She scrambled blindly to her feet. Everything around her was cloaked in fuzzy black. She turned quickly as the panic and fear continued to grow. A faint light in the distance above her caught her attention and drew her eyes.

Headlights. A car had stopped on the road above. She wondered if it was the vehicle which had been following them. Then again, she had no idea how much time had passed, it could very well be just another passing car which stopped to investigate the mangled guardrail.

Another light moved above and separated from the car, making its way slowly down the steep rocky slope. She moved forward, opening her mouth to call for help.

The light brightened, illuminating the scene before her and stealing any words from her lips.

Their car rested in a mangled mess at the base of the slope, the roof crushed in, the side and hood smashed. It had landed the right way up, the driver’s side facing her. The popping sound came from the car as the metal protested and the dead engine cooled.

Taking a hesitant step forward she could still smell gas. At least in the rain she didn’t have to worry about it catching fire. Part of her wanted to rush forward and make sure Brian was alright. The rest of her was afraid of what she would find.

“What a mess.”

She turned her gaze away from the car to the man who had spoken. Two people had come down, him and a small woman who held the light.

“It was a bad spot,” the woman said quietly.

The man turned and she saw him scowl in the light. “And whose fault is that? You had better hope they are both not dead already!”

Becky cringed at his words and hoped they couldn’t see her. Obviously they’d had a part in the accident. She remembered the bump she had felt before Brian had lost control again. Had they rear ended them on purpose? Why?

The man picked his way around the side of the car, the woman following silently behind.

She bit her lip and moved closer, keeping out of the light. She hoped Brian wasn’t hurt. For some reason she still couldn’t bring herself to call out to the couple. The man pulled on dark gloves as he peered in the driver’s side window, the woman a few steps behind him.

Becky moved around toward the front of the car, hesitant and worried. She couldn’t see within the car, the light glinted off the windshield in the rain.

She froze. If the windshield remained intact, how had she gotten thrown out of the car?

“The girl is dead.”

Her head jerked around at the woman’s words. She stared at the strangers from her new vantage point in front of the car.  He was tall, dressed well in tailored shirt and slacks. She stood much shorter, everything about her small and delicate looking. Dark hair hung like a shadow past her waist. The man cursed, wiping water off of his face. The woman was staring at her, her face sad.

She remembered the rain. Though it continued to pour she couldn’t feel it. Meeting the woman’s eyes she saw it didn’t touch her either. She looked down, raising her hands. She looked solid, however she wasn’t wet. She raised a hand, cupping it to catch the rain. The drops went right through her.

Her breaths quickened in horror. She was dead? She was… what? A ghost?

Damn.

The man muttered something under his breath.

She looked up, shocked to see flashes of light come from his hands and hit the car door. With a pleased smile he jerked it open and bent to look within.

All she could think about was Brian. Frustrated she couldn’t see she moved closer to stand by the hood of car, peering around the open door.

“Rhea?” The man stepped back and woman moved forward.

“He lives. His injuries are not severe.” Rhea stepped back again, a faint smile for a brief moment crossing her lips.

The man scowled and cursed. He bent into the car again. “He’s unconscious?”

“Yes,” Rhea replied softly.

Becky grimaced, worried about Brian and not understanding what was going on. For some reason it seemed the man could not see her, yet the woman could. She moved closer, coming up to the door which separated her and the strange man. Biting her lip she finally forced herself to look within the car.

She shouldn’t have been surprised to see herself sitting there, eyes wide and staring blankly. Still the sight stole her breath away, which made her pause. She was dead. She didn’t need to breathe. Hysteria bubbled within her. She didn’t know whether to scream or to cry.

She did neither. Obviously there wasn’t anything she could do for herself, but maybe there was something she could do to help Brian. Certainly there must have been some reason she remained in this world.

She looked again, noting the mess of articles scattered about, trying to ignore her broken and twisted body. Brian sat back in his seat, eyes closed yet clearly breathing. A small, relieved smile crossed her face as she watched him. Brian, her Brian.

“Shit,” the man muttered. He reached over and grasped Brian’s chin, turning his head. “Well. We won’t make this a wasted opportunity.”

“Simon, no!”

Becky jerked at the pain in the woman’s voice. The man, Simon, pushed out of the car to glare furiously at her. Rhea scrambled backward, fear spreading across her beautiful face. She stopped abruptly, pain contorting her features as she bent slightly,  a hand going to her chest. “I’m sorry,” she murmured.

A wicked smile slid across Simon’s face. “Mind your place, Echo.”

Rhea nodded, turning her head away.

Becky watched in confusion, having no idea what was going on other than Simon had somehow hurt Rhea and had some kind of control over her. Simon again returned to the car and Becky quickly moved closer, remembering his cryptic words and frightened over what he might do to Brian.

Simon looked Brian over. “So then, let’s speed things along shall we.” He paused a moment, clearly thinking, before leaning in and picking up a smashed CD case. He snapped a large piece of the plastic cover off. Leaning back he turned it in his gloved hand and then forcefully jammed it into the side of Brian’s neck.

“No!” Becky lurched forward, shocked and horrified. This man hadn’t just stabbed Brian. He couldn’t have.

He also hadn’t heard her scream, or noticed she had moved through the door, through him. Freaking out she scrambled backward past the door again, choking sobs ripping through her. She wanted to run, she wanted to scream. She wanted to help Brian but she couldn’t. She could only stare through her tears as blood poured from his wound.

Simon wiggled the plastic, pushed it in a little further. Frowning, he started slapping Brian’s cheek. “Wake up. You need to wake up for this to work.” He grimaced, frustration darkening his eyes. With a bloody hand he wiped more water off of his face.

Becky looked up, noticing the rain had started to let up, the downpour now reduced to a light drizzle.

“Becky?”

She jerked her eyes back to Brian, instinctively moving toward him. “I’m here…” Her words died. He couldn’t hear her.

His eyes blinked in confusion as he grimaced in pain. “Becky?”

Simon smiled in satisfaction. “There we go. Look at me. Good.” He reached one hand behind Brian’s neck, the other holding his head steady. “Becky needs you. Do you understand? This is important.”

“Becky…yes.” Brian murmured, fighting to keep his eyes open as blood poured from his neck.

She shook her head frantically. “No! No, Brian!”

“He can’t hear you.”

She turned with a gasp. Rhea now stood directly behind her. “What’s going on?”

“You can’t help him.” The woman closed her eyes for a moment. “You don’t want to see this. You should go on. Find the light and go on.”

“You can see me.”

Rhea nodded. “I died a long time ago. Most humans can’t see ghosts. You know that.”

“But he can see you,” she said in confusion.

“I am very old, I have the power to materialize. Simon also, is… different.” Rhea looked away. “I  am his. He has power over me.”

Becky bit her lip, both confused and horrified.

Rhea looked back at her. “Truly, you do not belong here. It will be alright in the end. I will do what I can, but you need to go on.”

She looked back to Brian and Simon, apparently neither had heard the quiet conversation, Simon continued to talk rapidly and quietly to Brian who grew weaker and fainter by the moment. Dying. Brian was dying. She shook her head in denial. This wasn’t happening, this couldn’t be happening. “Brian…”

Simon shifted and leaned in closer over Brian. “You must choose,” he said loudly enough for her to hear.

Brian nodded faintly. “Her, I must help her…I will…” He sucked in a small breath and closed his eyes. “Becky…”

The words stopped as his heart failed.

Tears streamed down her cheeks as she reached a hand out to him, her eyes widening in shock as Simon leaned forward, placing his lips over Brian’s and inhaling deeply. He remained that way for a moment before stepping back, a satisfied smirk across his face.

“What just happened?” She looked back to Brian, sucking in a startled breath as suddenly he moved.

“Rhea,” Simon snapped. “Gather him. I want to get out of this damn rain.”

Rhea moved around her, head bowed slightly. “Of course.”

Simon took a small flashlight from Rhea and turned on his heel, quickly making his way back up the slope to his car.

Rhea reached out and took Brian’s hand, pulling as she stepped back. Brian came with her, yet remained behind.

Becky stared at him by the faint light of the cars indoor lights. He was like her. Simon had turned him into a ghost. But why?

Rhea turned to her as she looped an arm through Brian’s. “You need to go. Now. You cannot help him.”

She took a step forward, trying to see around Rhea. “What are you talking about?”

Rhea shook her head in annoyance. She turned to look up at Brian. “Hold on to me.”  Then they shimmered and became a blur of light which quickly disappeared.

Becky stared, shock freezing her in place. Where had they gone? What the Hell had just happened? She sank to the ground, tears sliding down her cheeks as her lips trembled in frustration and anger.

The sharp sound of a car door slamming made her look up and she watched as Simon turned his car around and drove off.

They had all left her. She had died. Strangers had killed Brian and then stolen away his ghost. She was a ghost, yet  they had left her behind. She was alone. Dead and alone.

She had no idea what to do. She closed her eyes, trying to regain some semblance of calm. She had to think. She had to do something. She couldn’t stay here.

Light brushed against her lids and she opened her eyes again. In the distance a faint oval of light shone warmly, invitingly. She stared it, uncomprehending for a moment until she remembered Rhea telling her she should go on.

This was the light everyone always spoke of. The gateway to heaven, or whatever else lay beyond death. She rose unsteadily to her feet, the light pulling at her, promising rest and peace and everything else anyone had ever longed for.

She stopped, planting her feet and shaking her head, trying to clear it.

Bugger that. She wasn’t going anywhere without Brian. She turned and began heading up the rocky slope, not having any plans, or any idea what she was doing, only knowing she had to try.

The light behind her dimmed and faded away.

 

Author Bio

Jennifer Wylie was born and raised in Ontario, Canada. In a cosmic twist of fate she dislikes the snow and cold.

Before settling down to raise a family, she attained a BA from Queens University and worked in retail and sales.

Thanks to her mother she acquired a love of books at an early age and began writing in public school. She constantly has stories floating around in her head, and finds it amazing most people don’t. Jennifer writes various forms of fantasy, both novels and short stories. Sweet light is her debut novel to be published in 2011.

Jennifer resides in rural Ontario, Canada with her husband, two boys, Australian shepherd a flock of birds and a disagreeable amount of wildlife.

Short Story Blurb: Jump- Release Date Dec 15 2010

 

If you were told to jump off of a bridge would you? Perhaps it would depend on who was doing the asking. Our heroine has spunk and a sense of humor, however suffers from an extreme case of inappropriate clothing. When things take a turn from dangerous to worse what will she do when fantasy becomes reality? Warning: May include hot leather clad men, singing and demons.

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  1. December 12, 2010 at 9:50 am

    Thanks so much for hosting me again Sean!
    You are most awesome as always! 😀

  2. Anita Wakeham
    December 13, 2010 at 4:37 am

    Excellent tasters which I’m sure speaks volumes for the book, it leaves one wanting more.

    Anita.

    • December 13, 2010 at 7:43 am

      Thanks Anita! I appreciate you stopping by! 🙂

  3. December 13, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Hi Jen, wow… good stuff. Yep, I’d really keep reading. Thanks for sharing.

    Julie

  1. December 12, 2010 at 9:58 am

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