Tag Archives: stories

Ghost Boy Blues 10

Out in the hall we stand on shaky feet. Though much of the vertigo feeling has gone away, this host body is weak. Perhaps it is my presence that drains the energy, the fact that two should are now sharing a bodily apartment. For now we are roommates trying to get along until one moves out. Eventually, one will dominate the other. I cant imagine both minds swirling around in this flesh, bumping into each other and wondering who’s thoughts are whose.

We head down the empty hall, me inside the frame of Joey Mattson, the guy everyone else wants to be. And now I’m him. I could probably get any girl in school now. They all adore him. Even the teachers like him. The sky is the limit on what is achievable. But first, Joey thinks he needs to go to the bathroom. And so I relax, letting him go to take care of whatever bodily functions needs attention.

No one is in the restroom. He looks at himself in the mirror and splashes water in his face. It’s a weird feeling for me, seeing myself and knowing the face isn’t mine. This one doesn’t have acne, nor scars associated with it. The eyes are a different color, the cheeks higher, and when he smiles to check his teeth, I can’t help that they are much whiter than mine were. It takes some effort but I force hm to look down at his body. Even with clothes covering it, I can tell the physique is more appealing than mine ever was. I no longer inhabit a lanky body. Its easy to tell Joey works out. He is in top physical form. No wonder he’s popular with the ladies.

My thoughts must have been bleeding into his own for the vertigo returned and he hurried into a stall to throw up. He retched but nothing came. I could his confused mind asking what was wrong with him. I wanted to answer him back, ‘You aren’t just you anymore.’ I also wanted to direct him to get it together and just accept this. Go find the girl I jumped into this body for anyway. I don’t know if it was my thoughts or how he was feeling physically, but he went to retch again.

The bathroom door opened and someone came in. He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand and stepped out of the stall, expecting to see a teacher. But it wasn’t one of the faculty. It was the football jock from class.

“Hey, you okay?”

“Yeah, I think so,” my host replied. “No, I’m not sure.”

The jock walked to one of the urinals and unzipped. In the midst of relieving his bladder, he asked, “so, what’s wrong? You feel sick?”

“Yeah, a little, I guess.”

“You going to hurl?”

My host laughs. “No. I thought I was. I’ll be okay.”

The jock zips back up. “I hope so.”

“Yeah, me too.”

We all walk to the sinks, both guys washing their hands. Nothing is said for a moment.

“How did you get out of class?” My host asks.

“Oh that was easy. Teachers get uneasy when you say you cant hold it any longer. I threatened to piss in my seat.”

They both have a laugh at this and then proceed to dry their hands off at the wall mounted dryer.

“You better go back soon then,” Joey says. “It doesn’t take that long to pee.”

“Yeah, I guess I better. You sure you’re okay?”

I nod my head, or at least Joey does. I am just a spectator inside his body. And then I fell it. A butterfly kind of feeling, that spreads through my stomach and down my body. I wonder if he’s going to retch again right in front of this guy. Maybe hurl up on his shoes.

The jock smiles and turns to go, then stops. “I don’t care if you threw up or not.”

“Yeah?”

“Yes.”

He grabs my host’s face in his hands and kisses him.

+++++

Missed an episode? Ghost Boy Blues now has its own main page so you can catch up or start at the beginning. Find it Here

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Wild Fire and Star Shine (flash fiction) (short story)

WILD FIRE & STAR SHINE

“Where’s Jack,” the little girl asked, finishing off her bowl of oatmeal and looking up at her mother hopefully.

Mother smiled. “He’s outside chopping wood.”

“He hasn’t left?”

Mom tried to muster a smile. “Not yet.”

Her daughter looked up from her breakfast. “But he will?”

“Eventually, I suppose.” She turned from her child to the sink. “They always do.”

The little girl put her spoon down and slid her chair from the table. “I wish one of them would stay. I always miss them when they leave.”

Then she was bounding out the door for the wood pile and the man who waited there.

“I do too, Sophie,” her mother said in her absence. “I do too.”

Sophie ran on ten year old legs around the back of the house where a man stood over a pile of logs he was in the process of splitting. Though it was fall and a little chilly at the base of the mountain, he worked shirtless, his muscles rippling with each swing of the axe.

The child watched him for a moment as he worked on the wood and then said, “I hope I have muscles like yours when I grow up.”

The man smiled as if noticing her for the first time. He looked at her, his sky blue eyes bright in the morning sun. “From what I have seen that would probably make people uncomfortable. Little girls aren’t supposed to dream of being men.”

“Mama says women can do things better than men. And that girls aren’t afraid of com..commi…”

“Commitment?” Jack suggested.

“Yes, commitment.”

Jack lifted his axe and brought it down on a log. “Well, your mom is probably right.”

“Are you afraid of commit..commitment?”

He snorted. “That’s a deep question for a little girl.”

Sophie sat down on one of the logs. “I don’t want you to go.”

“I’m not going anywhere, little one.”

“Mama says you will. She says men don’t like baggage.”

Again, he smiled. “Your mama says a lot.”

Sophie brushed her chestnut colored hair off her face. “She likes you, you know.”

“I like her, too.”

She smiled mischievously. “Are you going to kiss her?”

“Sophie!”

The shout startled the girl, and she turned to see her mom standing there with two coffee mugs in her hand.

“That’s not the way girls talk to grown men,” her mom scolded. “Now go inside and get ready for school.”

“He’s not a grown man.”

“Sophie! Mind your manners and do what I tell you.”

The girl hung her head. “Yes mam.” She looked up at Jack who had a look of amusement on his face. “I’m sorry Mr. Jack. I shouldn’t have said that about grown up.”

The man sat down the axe and walked over to her. He jostled her hair with his hand. “It’s okay, wildfire. Maybe I do have a lot of growing up to do still. I’ve only been here a couple of weeks. Still not used to this air.” He winked and looked to the blue expanse of sky overhead. “I’m so used to cramped spaces and a faster pace of things.” He smiled at her reassuringly. “I’ll get used to it. But right now, you better do what your ma says.”

“Yes, sir,” she replied and headed off to the house.

Jack put his hands on his hips and looked at the girl’s mother. “Is that for me,” he asked, pointing at one of the cups in her hand.

“Um yes, of course,” she replied, trying not to look at his bare chest. She attempted to ignore how the sweat ran in rivulets down to his abs, disappearing into the top of his faded black jeans.

He took the cup she offered and drank from it in spare sips. Some of it missed his lips and ran down his chin, but he seemed not to notice.

“Thanks,” he said. “How do you say it? It hits the spot?”

“Yes, that’s what we say, “ she agreed, hoping he had forgotten the interchange between himself and her precocious daughter. He handed the cup back and picked up the axe again, hefting it over his shoulder to return to the task of woodcutting. “So, what is this thing about kissing?”

She dropped both cups. “Um..I..you have to understand something…about children. Sometimes…they, um, say the craziest things.”

He nodded as if digesting some new kind of information. “Hmmm. And is this something they grow out of?”

“Hopefully so.”

“This kissing thing then?”

“Don’t worry, “ she replied, her voice catching in her throat. “It will pass. Nothing to concern yourself with.”

He could tell she was nervous, that this was an uncomfortable kind of topic for her. He knew enough to change the conversation before it made her even more uneasy..

“How about them Cowboys?”

“Excuse me?” She asked.

“I saw that on the…what do you call it?…television. When you want to avoid a subject?”

“Um..yes, of course. How about them cowboys.”

She tried to muster a confident smile and turned to go back inside. She needed to check on Sophie and drive her to school or they would be late. She took one last look at Jack and almost felt sorry for him. Where he came from, on his planet, kissing must have truly been an alien concept.

Ghost Boy Blues

Author’s Note: like it often does inspiration struck me with a phrase that just leaped into my head, so this is what came from it. I don’t know how far I will go with this, but I thought I’d share it anyway. As a writer I don’t like leaving stuff around unseen, but believe everything should be put out there for people to find and read. By the way, the phrase that got this thing started is actually the last sentence of this piece. Just thought I’d let you know in case you were curious. Alrighty then, here we go. Hope you enjoy.

Ghost Boy Blues

She doesn’t see me; she never does. I’m a ghost in the room, passing from desk to desk, until I am beside her, close enough for my breath to touch her neck. But I hold it, never exhaling upon her skin but longing to tell her how I once loved her.

It’s at time likes these I wish I would have at least tried to tell her. But the truth is I lacked the courage then. Even now, moving about unseen, relegated to just a feeling in the room, I can’t seem to convey my feelings. Even as a ghost I lack the bravery necessary just to whisper “I love you” in her ear.

She wouldn’t even know where it came from. She might even think she was hearing things that weren’t really there, but I feel like that just like me she could benefit from knowing she is adored above all the stars in the sky. There must be a way to let her know. Some instance where I can show the whole class that despite who I once was, how insignificant my existence had been, I was now the shadow that would never leave her side, the shelter among all her teenage storms. I am the ghost boy with the cold blue eyes and the heart of fire.

Episode 2

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Monday Morning At The Springtime Cafe (short story / flash fiction)

It’s Monday morning and I’m sitting at the Springtime Cafe once again, watching all the A.M. people get a kick start to their day. Coffee, danishes, breakfast, conversation, whatever one needs to begin is right here. There’s even a duo set up with their acoustic guitars in the corner playing a cute little Ingrid Michaelson song. Several waitresses move about, taking orders and offering their own voices to the conversations at the various tables and booths. This morning I spot two of them right away.

Mags, or Maggie for long, is a middle aged lady, perhaps 40 or so, but she moves through the place like she’s twenty-five. She has blond hair, from which I can spot a few grays, though I never try to look that close. She gets picked on about that enough by some of the regular guys who come in and perch at one of her tables while awaiting their carpool. Of course she usually just shoots them down with a look from her steely, gray eyes. If that doesn’t work she has a tone to her voice that might remind you of your mom telling you a whipping is coming. For this reason alone, I can’t help but like her.

The other waitress is just as likable, a little more bubbly perhaps, because of her age. If I had to guess she’s about 30, maybe a few years younger. If Mags acts and moves around like a younger woman, then her co-worker flies around the room like a college girl late for class. Her name is May, and perhaps her parents should have been scolded for naming their child Maybelline, but she too made the best of the jokes and cajoling from the guys who frequented the cafe, some of them drawn indoors by the sight of her alone.

I speak from experience here. I myself was just tooling down the street on the way to a cubicle job I hated when I looked over and saw the brunette waitress through the window of the cafe. Her hair was long then, falling over her shoulders and slightly down her back. From the street, I saw her smile at a customer, and from that day I knew I would want her smile to be at the start of my morning for the rest of my life. Perhaps that’s an exaggeration, but as if on cue she arrives at my table, while I sit here like a dumbfounded idiot watching her approach and jotting it down. If I drew instead of writing about her, she may take more notice, but as it is I’m just another guy, maybe a teacher at the local college, working on a thesis or grading papers while waiting for his coffee.

“Still at it,” she asks, as she steps up to the table, the soles of her white shoes tapping lightly as if a near perfect dance routine had come to a temporary stop.

“Yeah,” I sigh with a smile and fall in love again for the tenth time this morning.

Seven Days Of Sentences: Day 5

Just a couple more days left in the challenge. If you’re just joining me here, the challenge is this: write a story in just one sentence. Sentence can be any length, but once a period is in place, that’s it. So here we go with my attempt on Day 5.

——

The Bible told him what to do, and though it wasn’t what we would have done, perhaps our minds weren’t quite as twisted as his.

Seven Days Of Sentences: Day 3

It’s day 3 of this personal writing challenge. I’m having fun with this, and I feel like it’s helping motivate me a little. Sometimes I spend a great deal of thinking on what I’m writing, trying to keep characters and events in line with the larger story. But with this challenge I can write off the cuff, not really thinking about where the story will lead. Just getting into the simple act of writing. If you need that kind of motivation, I hope you’ll try the challenge as well. It only requires you to tell a story or show a scene in one sentence. The sentence can be as long as you like, but when you put that period in, that’s it. Here’s mine for today.

My father had a knack for disappearing days at a time, causing both mom and I to wonder if there was another woman, or perhaps a more sinister reason for the gun in his drawer.

Are You Gonna Eat That? (Short story)

 “Are you gonna eat that?” she asks. 

 I look down at my plate. “Nah, too much gristle,” I reply, pushing it away from me.

 She rolls her eyes. “I’ll take it then, Mr. Picky-Eater. No sense letting it go to waste.”

 My wife, the garbage disposal. I shake my head. “Hell woman, you’ll eat anything.”

 She grins. “You know it. To hell with starving third world countries, I’ll eat it myself.” Taking a bite, she licks her lips happily. “Damn, this is good. What’s wrong with you?”

 “I don’t like Chinese food too much.”

 “And you don’t like Mexican, either. I’m surprised you don’t starve to death.”

 “Yeah, that will be the day,” I reply. I reach across the table for a plate that’s laden with all meat patties. “I just prefer good old American cuisine.” I bite into one of the patties. It’s a little raw but still delicious.

 She sighs. “Well at least you don’t cook all the flavor out of them.”

 We eat in silence for a few minutes. The only sound is the noise of us chewing our food. Finally she breaks the silence.

 “I saw Patricia at the store the other day.”

 “How’s she doing?”

 “She looked a little pale to me, but she’s gaining weight she says. Her doctor told her she was getting fat. She said she got so mad she could have bitten his head off.”

 I laughed out loud. “Knowing her, she probably did.”

 She laughs with me. “Yeah, she’s got a big mouth on her, we’ve known that.”

 “Open mouth, insert foot. Anyone’s foot.”

 This sets my wife to laughing so hard that she has to wait before putting more food in her mouth.

 “So, how are she and Bill doing?” I ask.

 “She said Bill’s been sick. Food poisoning or some such.”

 “Oh, that sucks.”

 “Yeah.” She takes another bite of her food, talking all the while. “I invited them over for dinner sometime. She said they might do that. I told them we have plenty to eat because you eat like a bird.”

 “Yeah, I love birds,” I tease.

 She tries to laugh but ends up choking on her food a little.

 “Slow it down,” I tell her.

 “Can’t help it,” she replies, after clearing her throat. She reaches across the table for another leg and thigh.

 “I’ll leave you the breast,” she says with a wink.

 “Well, that’s mighty thoughtful of you.” I pick up the breast and take a big bite. “Mmm..mm, there’s nothing better tasting than this right here. You can have the leg all you want, it’s nothing compared to the white meat.”

 My wife just smiles and continues eating. She’s chewing every bit of meat off that leg.

“So honey, what are we going to do with the head?” I ask.

She sets the leg bone down and picks up the thigh, casually wiping the blood off her chin. On the table, a woman’s lifeless face, frozen in a silent scream, stares back at us like a zombie’s TV dinner.

 

 Paul D Aronson. All Rights Reserved.