Excerpt from A Ghost To Die For by Keta Diablo
Rooney encounters a stranger in her hotel room and soon finds out he’s a ghost!
Rooney looked at the man through narrowed eyes. “You weren’t at the séance on stage, so what then, were you in the audience?”
No, I was on stage, but kind of hanging around in the background. He put his hands in the air, palms out. I swear, I won’t hurt you, but I been lurking around this hotel for two months now wondering how I was going to get out of this mess. Then you arrived at La Bonne Chance with your sister, you know, the fabulous Fontaine sisters, the crème-dela-crème of psychics, and my prayers were answered.
She snorted. “I’m not a psychic, mister, so if that’s your angle, you picked the wrong sister.”
No, I picked the right sister. Now if only I can get her to hear me out.
“I don’t want to hear you out; I want you to get the hell out of my hotel room. Like now!” When he didn’t comply, she moved the can of hair spray until it loomed inches from his face. “I’m going to count to three. If you aren’t out of that chair and out that door by then, I’m giving you a face full of hair spray.”
Go ahead. Maybe then you’ll realize what I am and listen.
“You asked for it.” She held the nozzle down and let him have it right between the eyes. He didn’t move a muscle, didn’t react at all. Much to her dismay, she didn’t even have the satisfaction of seeing him blink. The drizzle and aroma of hair spray hung heavy in the air but didn’t seem to bother him nearly as much as it did her. Through a series of chokes and chortles she managed to eke out the words. “What are you, some kind of weirdo with inhuman defenses?”
You asked me what I am and I’m telling you. I’m a ghost.
Eyes wide, voice in shriek mode, she fell onto the edge of the bed and glared at him. “You can’t be a ghost. I don’t believe in ghosts!”
Understandable. Neither did I until I became one.
She reached out and touched his arm, more to prove him wrong than anything else. A startled scream escaped when her fingers danced through vacant air. Coming to her feet, she paced a small area beside the bed. “This can’t be happening. It isn’t possible.”
That’s exactly what I said when they pushed me off the balcony and I wound up in this state.
She resumed her prior position on the bed. “Someone pushed you off a balcony?”
More like tossed me over, right here at the La Bonne Chance Casino, seventh floor, two months ago.
“Two months ago? You’ve been wandering around here for two months?”
He released an exasperated sigh. I thought you might be a good listener, but I’ve said that twice now. Two months ago I died, and yes I’ve been hanging out here, twiddling my thumbs and trying to figure out what to do next.
“You can’t leave the hotel?”
Not yet, anyway. I’m working on it, but you have no idea how much energy it takes just to project my voice. No one else has been able to hear me, or see me, until you, Rooney, and now I seem to be experiencing a renewed sense of energy.
“Stop saying my name as if we’re besties.”
Well, after that séance and the conversation you had with Violet about your little sister, Vanessa, I kind of feel as if we are.
Keta Diablo once dressed up as old man on Halloween and picked up her 9th grader at school in costume! Needless to say, he wasn’t pleased. In fact, he refused to get in the car. She followed him out of the parking lot and down the street for two blocks before he’d even look at her. Yes, he finally got in, but didn’t appreciate her humor…at all. Update: He’s in college now and says the “old man” incident is now one of his fondest childhood memories.
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