Wednesday, August 15, 2012

WWR: Haunted

“Am I walking toward something I should be running away from?” 
- The Haunting of Hill House,
Shirley Jackson

I've always wanted to live in a haunted house. Haunted by ghosts or by memories, I'm not picky.

I want darkened stair cases and turrets that stretch toward the sky; wraparound verandas, ivy growing slowly up brick siding, a family plot cemetery behind a wrought iron fence and a garden that has gone to seed and is slowly creeping toward the house.

I want 100 year old memories in every room I visit. The scent of violet perfume, so faint you'd think you dreamed it. Old tin treasures left under a loose floor board by some child years before I was born. A forgotten wedding photograph wedged deep inside an armoire.

Of course, the closest I've ever come to a haunted home was a-not-that-old apartment building in Oberkail, Germany where the basement hallways never seemed to get enough light and the wind whispered in too many voices beneath the eves on gusty winter nights when the darkness seemed like it might last forever.

But I still hold out hope for a ramshackle Victorian inspired house of my own one of these days, where I'll lock myself in a turret office to do my writing, occasionally emerging to have tea with the resident ghosts.

(Should you choose to accept it....)

Write a story about a haunting. 

via Stock Xchng

“Fear," the doctor said, "is the relinquishment of logic, the willing relinquishing of reasonable patterns. We yield to it or we fight it, but we cannot meet it halfway.” 
- The Haunting of Hill House, Shirley Jackson

Maybe there's a haunted house. Or, maybe, houses are not haunted but people are. Or perhaps there's a ghost with a lingering attachment to an item that has been passed on to someone else. Maybe a murderous scene plays out again and again with its spirit participants unable to break the cycle. The ideas are endless. 

But you have 50, 250, or 500 words in which to write one, should you choose to do so. 

And if you do take up the prompt, please take a button and share the prompt with your world. (Come back before midnight on Sunday to share your response in the comments and I'll tout them during the next Romp Round.)

Here's mine, in 50 words: 

The whistle of the kettle wakes them. 

They find the kitchen empty, as usual, but the table set, the tea hot, the milk jug out, a spoon balanced precariously atop the sugar bowl.

Bemused, they look at one another and sit down to enjoy what’s becoming a 5 a.m. ritual. 


L. M. Leffew said...

Your description about the haunted house you wanted was beautiful, and exactly what I would want in a dream house too. I hope we both find it someday :)

I may also try your writing prompt. I need to have a short story done by next Saturday and I have no idea what I'm going to write for it LOL

L. M. Leffew said...

Thank you. 

Good luck on your short. Deadlines are a cursed/blessed thing. Sometimes they work wonders for my ideas...other times, crashing and burning is an understatement. ;)

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