The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
The Old Road
by Terrie Leigh Relf
When the development company cleared the last few acres of trees to begin excavating for one of those new planned communities, an old road was revealed. It wasn’t just any old road, though, as it led across a wooden bridge to where the McConnell family used to live. The developers weren’t too happy, as it was an eyesore and beyond their property line. What ensued was a series of the usual town hall meetings, but the property had belonged to the Historical Society for nearly a hundred years, and they wouldn’t allow the developers to touch it. The usual attorneys were brought in, but the developers wasted their money. Finally, the development company decided to construct a high fence around their planned community, and ironically, replanted a new copse of trees.
A few years passed, and the new community, Forest Glenn, began to fill with empty nesters and older retirees. It was, after all, a retirement community, more or less. Just on the outskirts, there were the usual shops and restaurants, along with a market or two. One of the main selling factors, if you believed the brochures, was that Forest Glenn offered a dash of country living along with all the amenities of living in the city. The brochure also boasted that while children were allowed to visit, they weren’t allowed to stay for extended periods of time—and that was just fine by the residents.
It wasn’t, however, fine by me.
I missed the sound of children playing in the creek, scampering through the woods, and singing nursery and other rhymes. I missed their occasional bouts with mischief and how they left me gifts of flowers, fish, and bits of ribbon and other tokens for forgiveness and appreciation. I also missed the times we played hide-and-seek and other games beneath the old road and the surrounding woods and fields—and so I released their spirits one and all to haunt the residents of Forest Glenn.
At least, that’s what I thought I was doing. These days, I’m not as sharp as I used to be. Rather than the children’s spirits, I released my own. Alas, most of my powers are nil. Oh, I can haunt the residents just fine, but when I appear, I am nude. And at my age, I’m not about to show what time has done to my body. It’s just not going to happen.
The construction will continue, things will be just as progress dictates—and I’ll just be another old ghost, haunting houses before they are demolished. Never seen, never heard.
Fiction © Copyright Terrie Leigh Relf
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More from author Terrie Leigh Relf:
For thousands of Earth years, the Transgalactic Consortium has had a quiet interest in this planet and its inhabitants, the Haurans. While the Sisterhood of the Blood Moon works together with the Consortium and Haurans to maintain balance in the universe, the Blood Moon is fast approaching. The power of this moon reveals untold secrets . . . including a sacred covenant with the Mora Spiders. There is an ancient pact that needs to be honored—but at what cost and for whose purpose? The world may come to an end. But will there be a chance for a new beginning?