Spirit Whisperers Paranormal
by Sharon Flanders-Ferraro
It was another beautiful, fall day in Upstate NY. The air was crisp and the leaves were changing. Emilia always embraced this time of year, but this year was so much different. She was turning 25 on October 31st. She had gotten used to the stigma of the holiday that went along with it. After all, she loved all things Halloween.
Although she was very attractive, with long flowing black hair and large brown eyes, she never thought of herself that way. She would much rather spend time, by herself, listening to her playlist and bury herself in a good book. Especially recently, any escape from reality was more than welcome.
She'd had a hard year, losing both her parents in a freak boating accident, while vacationing at the family lake house. She dreaded having to go back. Her parents had left her the house. It had been in the family for over 100 years. Just thinking about it brought tears to her eyes and a wrenching feeling in her stomach.
She had one good friend, Dakota, who had always been there for her since she was 5. He told her that she wouldn't have to go through this alone. Emilia and Dakota were inseparable. Dakota was tall and lanky with dark auburn hair. He had a sparse beard that never grew in fully, but he insisted on growing it. He had visited the lake house several times growing up. Deep down he dreaded going back, but knew he had to, for his friend. The lake house was an eerie place. Strange things always happened there. The house itself was a large white mansion with twelve bedrooms and was very run-down.The pipes rattled, and the house creaked more than normal. Emilia’s mother, Lenore, used to tell them that this was a time of year when the house would be unsettled. But, it would soon be peaceful again.
Emilia packed the car, took a deep breath, and strapped herself into her seat. “You ready to do this Em? We could always do this another time,” Dakota said with a sweet smile. “ Yeah, better to just get this out of the way,” she sighed. This was a long road trip, and they were prepared. Dakota annoyed her with his tone-deaf singing, but it did eventually make her laugh.
Emilia turned her head to Dakota and placed her free hand over his mouth. “Watch out!” Dakota shouted. Emilia turned her eyes back to the road, and a flock of crows was heading right for her windshield. She couldn’t avoid them. She slammed on the brakes, as a couple of the birds hit the windshield. The others flew just above the car, with a chilling song of hoarse, grating coos and caws.
“You good?” Dakota said with a sigh of relief.
“Holy shit. What the hell was that?” Emilia screeched. “Why is it every time I get closer to this place, freaky shit happens?” she said resting her head on the steering wheel. “True that. Every fucking time!. We're almost there, and we don't want to get there after dark.” he said rubbing her back. Emilia nodded, pulling back onto the road.
Memories of her parents were flooding through her mind as they got closer. The last time she saw her parents alive, she argued with them. The last thing she said to them was, “ Just fuck off and leave me alone!” If she could go back in time, she would never have said that. But how could she have known that her parents would die that night.
The road started to crackle under the tires. They were on the dirt road that wound around to the service entrance of the house. “That was fast,” Dakota said. Emilia just sighed as they approached. The wind had brought in fallen leaves as they crunched their way to the door. “ You remembered the key, right?” he laughed. “Um.. yeah,” she said, fumbling through her jacket. The key was an old skeleton key. It opened most of the rooms in the house, except the front door. Fumbling through her jacket, she found the right key. The house was left just as it was - Mom’s coffee mug on the table, with the remnants of her crimson lipstick. Dad’s paper was scattered on his favorite chair. Dust covered most of the house, and spiderwebs entangled the light fixtures.
It was getting dark soon, and there was no electricity. Emilia scavenged the cupboards for candles. “Mom always had tons of candles, and now I can’t find any? “ she groaned “What about the attic? We didn’t check there,” Dakota offered. Emilia replied, “No way!” You know I hate the attic. Besides, I found some candles in Mom’s dresser.”
“I’ll get the fireplace started.” Dakota said, as he left to get some wood for the fire. The nights were getting chilly, and the next few nights they could get snow. Emilia lit the candles and sat in her father’s chair. She heard faint knocking coming from the other side of the house. Emilia brushed it off and closed her eyes for a moment. The knocking grew louder. It sounded like it was coming from the third floor. Her heart jumped as the knocking increased. The pipes started rattling and the stairs were creaking. “This freaking house!” she screamed.
Unnerved, and pissed, she decided to go outside and away from the house. She walked down to the lake. There it was - the boat that her parents died in. She crept up to it, as tears welled in her eyes. Wiping her eyes, she peered down into the water. This time of year the lake was black and placid. As she stared into her reflection, her image distorted into her mother’s. She slammed her fist onto the boat. “Damn it!”
“Hey Em!” She heard in the distance. It sounded like her mother’s voice. She turned around to see their neighbor Mrs. Harris, a sweet elderly woman. A bit eccentric. She always reminded Emilia of a traveling gypsy. Her long crazy silver hair was always pinned up with a stick, and she donned each outfit with scarves and robes. She was a well-known psychic in the area; little strange, but harmless. "Oh. Hi, Mrs Harris! You startled me a little bit,” she said wiping the rest of the tears from her face.
“It’s good to see you my dear. I’m so sorry about your parents.” Mrs Harris placed her hand on Emilia’s shoulder. “Thank you. I am sorry it took me so long to get back here. I should have come a lot sooner.” Emilia said walking back towards the house. “I can help you.” Mrs Harris said looking concerned,
“Help? With what? “ Emilia asked. “The curse, of course. Your mother didn’t tell you?” “Oh, that’s what you’re talking about.” Emilia had no idea what she was talking about. She had the uneasy feeling that this was going to be a strange conversation, but she really did not have the strength to listen to it and be polite.
“Well, if you need anything I’m right next door. It’s supposed to get pretty chilly tonight, so if you want to come over for a nice hot supper and some tea, my door is always open for you.” She smiled. “Thank you Mrs Harris. My friend Dakota is setting up the fireplace now, so I think we'll be okay. But we will keep that in mind.”
Emilia looked back at the water and wondered if her eyes had just played a trick on her, when she saw her mother’s face in the water. She looked like she was trying to say something. She could smell the wood burning and saw smoke rising from the chimney. The fire was going to warm the house nicely and might take care of some the creaking. Mrs Harris waved as she walked towards her cabin and out of sight.
“This house is freaking haunted!” Dakota yelled as Emilia walked in. “First the creaking, then the knocking, I heard someone call my name like this -"Da-Ko-Ta", and then your dad’s god-damned chair started rocking, on it’s own, while I was lighting the fire.” “Whoa, slow down, Emilia said. You know this place is creepy. You have been coming here for years Dakota.”
“Yeah, but this is some next-level shit going on,” he said, stoking the fire vigorously. Emilia knew that there seemed to be more going on than she would care to mention.