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Of Ghosts and Demons: A Confessional
Now that's really annoying, stealing your work pants. Boundaries should be respected, even by little ghosties. Pity you can't give them 'demerit' points for naughty behaviour.

Dust and cobwebs, eh? You have an attic? How cool. Have you since gone into the attic to see if there are any unexplained 'cleaned' patches? Or spied a few spiders cranky about their torn webs? What about a crawl space under the house?

Little ghostie girls playing dress-up in pants too long for them - that made me smile. Sooo cute!
There's life...and then there's the afterlife.
You think little spirit children playing dress up is cute?  Imagine the two spirit girls holding a fluffy little Totoro and spilling out the (at this point, going on 300) bright shiny dimes it contains.  A true princess’s treasure purse…

8 D

Me, I’m not quite sure I believe in ghosts as apparitions, but that’s a topic for another thread.  All I know, at this point in the story, is… They are shy, never coming out unless the place is near empty; they like me and occasionally interact with other peeps who like children or are near children themselves; and… they like Totoro.  But then, who doesn’t like Totoro? 

Well, Satan.  He prolly doesn't like Totoro.  And Pol Pot.  I can't imagine ISIL would approve of the predominant role of the two young girls in the movie and Mike Pence would likely consider the dust bunnies some kind of shadow demons...

Anyhoo, if you’ve ever known a young child… and I’m assuming you have… ‘boundaries’ are not something they inherently get.  At least, not at the age at which I’m estimating Andrea.  Susan, it’s more difficult to tell, but Andrea… I have a pretty good idea that she is (was) about six years of age.

This is skipping over some things… like the time my little spirit friends decided to pester a server who was rude to me one night… but I’m trying to keep a narrative going here. 

8 )
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The forces of Evil will probably come up with their own subversive version to replace Totoro. They'll call it Orotot (Totoro spelt backwards). Available in flashy blood-red and ichor-black. They'll run a slick marketing campaign to make poor Totoro seem dull and insipid in contrast. But we shall not be deceived.

I have this urge to get myself a Totoro coin purse now. Do you know it also comes in grey? If the girls were very young when they passed, that could explain the playfulness and the pranks. I can imagine them stacking the dimes into mini towers, knocking them over and starting again. Weeeeee!!!

I wonder about the amount of energy spirits need to move objects. I suspect it takes a fair bit. Maybe that's why the girls haven't showed themselves yet. They have to build up so much energy and then recharge their 'batteries' after each dime episode. The stunts were 'showing-off' moments - look how clever we are, see what we can do. Then it goes all quiet for a while as they have to gather up energy again.

Do you suppose that's another reason why they liked Daja? Highly-charged, teenage energy levels, just perfect to give them a special boost to pull a stunt for you. Wink
There's life...and then there's the afterlife.
Now, at this point in the story, I’ve come to believe that my little spirit friends are the spirits of a small group of children.  Part of that belief is the laughter I heard in the woods, part of it is the playful nature in which they interact with me, and part of it is the history to the area.  A centuries old waterpark is bound to have a few untimely deaths associated with it.  It’s not a stretch to imagine that the spirits of some small children might become… let’s say ‘fond’… of me, personally.  I love children of all ages, I used to sub for elementary schools, I write kids books… 

You get the idea.

Anyway, it might be foolishness… in fact, prolly was… but I’d come to enjoy the idea that a small groups of spirit children had ‘adopted’ me as their friend and were showing their affection through dimes and good-natured pranks.
Chapter Eleven:  Susan Introduces Herself

I don’t knows about you all, but I gots a routine when I get home from work.  1 – Check my email.  2 – Check my Facebook.  3 – Crawl into my Elsa PJs… or, if I haven’t done laundry lately, my Spongebob PJs… and randomly surf the web for awhile, before I start writing.  It’s just my way of relaxing my mind a bit.

Of course, that was then.  Now, I’ve added these forums to the Facebook step.

One of my guilty pleasures are those data mining sites that promise to tell you who is yr secret crush, or what five of yr Facebook friends compose yr mafia family.  I know it’s all nonsense… likely, there’s some algorithm that chooses friends at random, or… at most, ones you’ve recently or most often interacted with.  There is some kind of logic to it, however, because every time I do one of these, the answer is always the same… equal parts members of my family and equal parts random friends of mine… always different ones, but I have far more Facebook friends than I have family members, so it’s not totally random.

This particular night, one of my friends posted a link on Facebook relating to who would be in yr apocalypse survival group.  And, per usual, there were a few members of my family, a few random friends of mine… and Susan.

Now, let’s be clear here.  I do not know anyone named Susan.  I am not friends on Facebook with anyone named Susan.  In fact, I’m not entirely sure I have ever known anyone who went by the name Susan or Sue… except, perhaps, a character in my novels, who if often referred to as ‘Sue’ but is, in fact, Korean and named Soo-Mi.  Also, the avatar for this ‘Susan’ is a picture of a house on a lake near a woods or forest, in Autumn.  Not an actual person.

This kinda confuses me.  I mean, why go off formula?  Why tell me that some chick in… I don’t know, Maine… who I have never heard of is a member of my apocalypse survival group?  So I click another link… I forget, maybe ‘Who makes up yr Game of Thrones cast?’  and, again, there are a couple of my siblings, a few different Facebook friends… and Susan. 

Incidentally, I was Arya.  Of course.

I close my browser, re-open it and click on several other such surveys… time and time again, the results are the same.  A couple members of my family, a couple friends… and Susan.  I think I did a total of 6 surveys on two different websites and every time, Susan was there.

Quite befuzzled, I move on… after double checking my Facebook to make sure I didn’t drunk-friend some random Susan… which, incidentally, I did not.  But it occurs to me the next day that, a couple weeks back, my little ghosts had messed with my cell phone.  So that night at work, I wait until the place has cleared out and we’re about to close and I ask… are one of you named Susan?

Not out loud.  I’m not bonkers.  But I take a moment and think the question and, not 2 minutes later, I find a bright, shiny dime on the floor.

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Ooo, the plot thickens. [*happy chills*] I'm making a nice cup of tea and sitting down to read everything from the beginning again. Clever little ghosties!
There's life...and then there's the afterlife.

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