Ghost Walk

02-28-16_3-15-12 PM

Sometimes I am sitting on a bench, and the darkness sits next to me. It is wearing a skin of ash and embers.

The darkness says “I am sorry.”

The darkness says “I did not want to lose your universes.”

I think about asking the darkness what it’s sorry for. But I don’t.

I think I already know, anyway.

I like being alive

Sometimes the darkness and I wander through green and ashy hedges together.

The darkness has not spoken since it said it was sorry. Its eyes are gray again. Not white. Not black. But in between.

My wrist is blistered where it picked me up, on the bench. The black pulses from the ring of raised skin. But that’s okay.

I am glad that the darkness is here.

Its ash and embers skin is cooling. The breeze picks up some of its ashes and blows them into the mouths of the hedges.

I don’t hear anything but the breeze blowing through the leaves and the crackling of the hedges that are still burning behind us, but I think the hedgemouths are saying a word.

I think they are saying “Home”.

everybody needs a bosom for a pillow

Sometimes I sit down on the ground, my back against a very tall tree, and the darkness sits next to me.

I want to ask the darkness where it’s been. I want to ask why it disappeared. But I know it wouldn’t be able to answer me. Not right now, anyway.

The darkness reaches out with its hand of ash and dying embers, and it pats my hand. Which I guess is still a human hand, even with the black rolling through it.

I pat its hand. Its skin is just kind of pleasantly warm now. Like holding your hand over a candle flame. A few bits of ash flake off and fall to the grass.

I was always me enough, really.

everybody needs a bosom

Sometimes the darkness and I sit on the grass and gaze at the stars.

I think the black was me.

I look down at my wrist, where the darkness burnt the skin.

No.

The black is me.

The darkness makes a sound that is almost like its old hiss but not quite. It’s more of a crackle now, maybe. There are no words in it.

I look at it. It gestures towards my wrist.

I say, “It’s fine. It doesn’t hurt. Thank you.”

The darkness nods. Flakes of ash fall from its skin.

I look up at the stars again. I hold my right arm up against the sky. The black under my skin is darker than the space between the stars.

I stand up. The darkness crackles again. I say, “Come on. Let’s take a walk.”

The darkness stands up too. I worry a bit about the ashes that fall as it moves, but only a bit. I know there are always other skins.

We walk through the hedges that are sometimes burning and sometimes not, and their mouths tell us that we are home, over and over, as we walk towards whatever star comes next.

mine's only 45

Sometimes the darkness and I go for a walk.

It is very pleasant, this walk.

There are small lights to show us the way. There are flowers that smell nice and there are buzzing bees and there are little plaques that tell us about this place with the hedges and the flowers and the bees, how it is an old estate where tragic things happened and people died.

I won’t die. Probably not, anyway. Even if I get eaten by Lovesys No Color aliens. Or by the hedgemouths. Or by the ghosts of the people who died here. I wonder if ghosts eat people? They need to get their calories from somewhere.

I know that sometimes plain bridges eat people.

Oh well. If the ghosts do eat me, I won’t die. The darkness will pick me up.

Probably.

Maybe.

I hope.

I have a Quasar in my lap

Sometimes the darkness and I look out over a garden of many things.

I wish the darkness would talk. Sometimes it makes that crackle noise, but that’s not the same.

It makes the crackle noise. I remember that it can hear my thoughts.

I think “I am very glad that I imagined the chain.”

I think “Thank you for not disappearing this time.”

The darkness makes the crackle noise again. It is enough, really.

I sit down on the concrete. It sits next to me. I look at it.

All its embers have burnt out, leaving only ashes. Its eyes are gray still, but they are shining. The dull gray ashes and the shining gray eyes are beautiful, I think.

I look down at my skin, at the wide bands of black rolling through it. I am beautiful too, perhaps.

A voice below says “Yes, yes you are.”

I look down through the balustrade.

There, pink and hazy and waving up at me, is a ghost.

go thy ways to a nunnery

Sometimes the darkness and I worry that we may be eaten by a ghost.

The ghost says, “No, I won’t eat you”, but I don’t trust it. I watch it through the balustrade.

It says, “I haven’t eaten anything for centuries. I am a pink haze. I don’t even know if I still have a stomach.”

I still don’t trust it.

It sighs.

I can see the garden through it, all the flowers and hedges and little lights behind it tinted pink. I wonder what it’d be like to be a pink haze and to wander around a garden for centuries. I bet it’d make you pretty hungry.

It sighs again.

It says, “If I promise to not eat you, will you come down here? I mean, look, if it helps, I don’t think you’d be very tasty. I can see the void that you’ve got under your skin. That stuff tastes like death. And I should know.”

The darkness touches my knee. I look at it. It nods.

I look back down at the ghost. It’s tapping a hazy pink foot.

I say “How do we know you won’t eat us?”

The ghost growls. It expands, rising up and out, until the whole garden is covered in a pink haze.

The pink stops at the edge of the balustrade.

The ghost says, “You don’t. But come down anyway.”

it yesterday, it today, it tomorrow, it forever

Sometimes the darkness and I are wary of consciousnesses not our own.

We walk down into the garden. The pink haze recedes.

The ghost says, “See, I’m not eating you.”

It draws the haze into itself until the garden is clear.

It says, “You burnt my hedges. I arranged them very carefully, you know, and I have spent my unlife caring for them. Talking to them. Making friends with them. Feeding them unaware passersby. And then you burnt them.”

It says, “I would like to know why.”

I want to answer it, but I don’t know why. They were burnt when I got here.

I could maybe tell the ghost that I imagined the chain and then I was here with the darkness and it burnt me. But that would make it obvious that the darkness burnt the hedges, wouldn’t it? And I don’t want the ghost to eat the darkness, or to feed it to the hedgemouths.

The ghost looks at me. It says “I am NOT going to EAT anyone! Can you just accept that? Please?”

Then it looks at the darkness. It says “So. Why did you burn them?”

The darkness crackles.

is last pic of this sucky chapter and this sucky story and I can't write and it all sucks

Sometimes the darkness and I consider the meaning of existence inside a ghost’s stomach.

We’re not actually inside a ghost’s stomach. Not yet. But it’s important to be prepared.

I think that there would still be some sort of meaning, because there would still be beauty to perceive. The ghost is translucent, so if you were inside its stomach you could probably still see the surrounding environment. It would have a pink hazy film in front of it, though. But there’s a chance that maybe reality would look even more beautiful through a pink filter.

I see the ghost looking at me. It’s hard to tell, but I think it may be rolling its eyes.

It says, “Your companion here seems to only be able to make crackling noises. Can you translate?”

The darkness crackles. I listen carefully.

I tell the ghost, “The darkness says that your lights burn it.”

I don’t tell the ghost that its pink haze would probably make a good skin for the darkness.

The ghost considers this information.

It says “I sincerely apologize.” There is a small ripple in the ghost’s haze, and then all the lights in the garden go out.

The darkness crackles again. I tell the ghost, “It says thank you.”

The ghost says, “You’re welcome”, and I try to remember what the plaque said about how the ghost died.

I know it was very tragic and sad. I think there was something about star-crossed lovers and angry families and streets that ran red with blood, and also there was barbecue made from a giant blue pig, and then there was a curse and a stomach that could never be filled.

A stomach that could never be filled.

The ghost’s haze gleams pink in the dark.

It whispers “I have experienced many impossible hungers.”

I reach out for the darkness. I take its hand of ashes in mine.

The ghost whispers again. “But none of them were like this.”

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15 Responses to Ghost Walk

  1. Senna says:

    Is it odd that I have this specific voice for…whatever is opposite the Darkness?

    Because whenever I read your entries, I have this voice going in my mind for them as I read.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. cathytea says:

    This was so beautiful–the opening, especially, when the narrator and the darkness seem to be moving their friendship more deeply into the realm of love. And then I really enjoyed seeing what happened when a third identity joined their group!

    And the screenshots–wow! They fit so effectively with the words.

    Liked by 2 people

    • medleymisty says:

      Yeah, I liked the beginning too. Well, it was an ending really – the end of the previous plot arc. I was worried that the story itself would end, but then I kept writing and the ghost showed up. 🙂

      I get exhausted reading stories where bad things are constantly happening. I like having quiet little breaks sometimes like that.

      Thanks! 🙂 I pick the picture before I start writing and the picture really does inform the text. It may only use scenery shots, but it is still very much a Sims story that works with the game to create itself.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. RipuAncestor says:

    Well, now that all of my most annoying schoolwork is done, I can reward myself with some Surreal Darkness! And with a Silent Hill 2 soundtrack playing in the background. What a lovely moment. 🙂

    I especially loved the beginning, with the melancholic but still friendly silence between the narrator and the darkness. It felt safe and calm after the more intense previous chapter. And the ending with the sad, pretty and creepy ghost was also very lovely. And the screenshots were so beautiful – I especially liked the one where the shadow of the trimmed tree looks like a human silhouette! It fits very nicely with the introduction of the pink haze ghost, even though in my mind I don’t see it having a human form.

    Liked by 1 person

    • medleymisty says:

      Awww, I am very honored that you see my little story as a reward! I will have to look up the Silent Hill 2 soundtrack.

      I’m glad you liked it! I think that was what the story was going for – a time of calm and peace and togetherness after the separation, now that they’ve both realized how important they are to each other.

      I wonder what the ghost will do next! I guess it makes sense though – for the story to continue past their reconciliation it had to add another element.

      Thank you! I love Sims 4 and I think it’s beautiful, and I love editing the pics. It’s very soothing. As long as I don’t do too many at once. 😉 Which is one of the many reasons why it works for me to just write two pics a week at most.

      Oh wow, I didn’t see that in that pic! I will have to go back and look for it.

      Ooooh, what form do you see the ghost having?

      Liked by 2 people

      • RipuAncestor says:

        🙂 I agree that the Sims 4 has very beautiful scenery. Though I’m not yet sold on the visual style of the Sims themselves in that game. But that’s just my taste.

        I think I saw the ghost as mostly formless in my mind while I read. Like a pinkish light with maybe a vague humanoid shape. It could still have a more defined shadow, though. That would be cool. Hmm… now that I think about it, I just described this one ghost character from Thief: Deadly Shadows. Except that ghost was a bluish blob of light instead of pink. Oh, well, my mind keeps combining things into new images, but that’s normal. Everyone does that, or at least almost everyone, I think.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. As usual the way you combine empty but fully lit landscapes with the surreal content of your writing is a beautiful decision. You could attempt something else but I don’t think it would work – sort of like the decision of a director to try to fully show a monster and end up spoiling the movie because the director uses a human in a monster suit. You don’t try to show darkness in a game graphic suit.

    There is always a balance of fear and desire for companionship in this piece, such a strong desire that it overcomes the fear. The emphasis on communication is interesting, too. The ghost can’t understand the darkness. The narrator wonders why the darkness changes the way it speaks and sometimes doesn’t speak at all, and misses the speech. Formal apologies between entities that fundamentally do not understand each other, need an interpreter, but somehow trust that interpreter to be truthful, that’s also interesting. The narrator doesn’t trust the ghost either. Why act as an intermediary between the ghost and the darkness? Why encourage a sort of truce? The ghost has more power? Or, as is probably the case, the narrator and the darkness are one and the same so the translation is the truce, and we’re back to communication again.

    Always fascinating!

    Liked by 1 person

    • medleymisty says:

      *hugs you very much a lot*

      It means a lot that you get how just using scenery shots works. I do see the narrator as a Sim, but not as a physically realized Sim. Like…I guess I mean that the narrator is a Sim, but I don’t want to give the narrator a gender or a skin tone or a hair and eye color or anything.

      And then the darkness of course is not a Sim at all. 😉

      That balance, hmm, I wonder who it sounds like? There’s not anyone around here with social anxiety that was made a hundred times worse than it already was but who still wants friends, nope! 😉

      All the other stuff makes me think too. I’ve been thinking a lot about communication and about gaps in understanding and experiences and perceptions, and how much miscommunication and misunderstanding is caused by that. It’s really a lot of work to understand people who don’t have anything at all in common with you. It’s taking me years, and it’ll take me years more, and I might not manage it before I die at this rate.

      Oh, well, remember how honest Seth was? 😉 I guess my characters are never very good at deception.

      Also, here, both the darkness and the ghost can hear the narrator’s thoughts. So the ghost knows what the narrator is thinking. And what the narrator is not telling it. 😉

      I think the narrator is scared of the ghost hurting the darkness.

      As for the narrator and the darkness being the same….I don’t know. I don’t assume that when I write it, and it’s not how I visualize it in my head, but I like leaving the question open.

      Like

  5. I was so close to the edge of being caught up that I’m reading two segments this week. 🙂

    The pictures in this segment are beautiful. I love the benches and the maze.

    Yay the darkness and narrator are reunited!

    I, too, wonder why the darkness is sorry because the darkness did not appear to be sorry ever before. Maybe I’m missing something. I wonder if the darkness is softening a bit, if the narrator has this effect.

    The darkness and the narrator seem even more intertwined and their relationship feels even more symbiotic now. They’ve grown comfortable with one another, and they don’t bicker or annoy each other quite as much.

    The question about ghosts eating people is interesting. I wonder if the pink ghost will become a friend to the darkness and the narrator.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Oh yeah, the darkness is changing and growing and learning more about emotions and empathy and friendship and all that. 🙂 It’s so nice to write a relationship that gets healthier as it goes on after years of Seth and Sarah.

      The next chapter has a lot of the ghost! 🙂

      Like

  6. celebkiriedhel says:

    I imagine the narrator’s voice is James Earl Jones. I like hearing it.

    Like

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