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A Ghost Story (from Fafoo's Twitter)
This is sudden, but it's a summer night, so I thought I'd write a ghost story. Just the first part.
After the boy became a ghost, he found that he liked not being seen, and did something akin to an ego-search. His hobby was going into houses and schools and eavesdropping on people talking about him. He had been despised while alive, but after his death, he was spoken of as if he were beloved.
One such day, he grinned as he listened to a conversation grieving his death. Seeing sullen classmates saying "He was such a good person," he came to feel quite arrogant. Just then, a girl who hadn't been part of the conversation suddenly spoke up. "That's not true."
"You all hated him. You're trying to forget about it, but I still remember." The girl left the classroom. His ego damaged, the ghost decided he would spook the rude girl and followed after her.
The ghost waited until night, during which the girl silently studied for exams. Then his chance came. She fell asleep exhausted on her desk, so he roughly shook her awake. She woke up, saw a boy who she knew was dead - and for some reason, seemed to smile.
"Shameful," the girl shook her head. She put her hands out, touched his cheek, and clapped in front of her face. "Boy, this is serious. I can even feel you. That's not good." It appeared she thought the ghost was a hallucination brought on by her exhaustion. "How embarrassing." She held her head.
"Hey," the ghost said. "It speaks!", she recoiled. "Who's the one everyone hates, again?", he asked, and she timidly pointed at him. Hoping to scare her, he grabbed her neck, and she said: "Everyone just wants to forget you."
"Their idea is to force themselves to mourn and get to the "We've mourned enough, time to move on" stage as quickly as possible. In reality, everyone's minds are only on coming events," the girl coughed out. "And I can't let them do that."
"Everyone but me hated you, I know it. And I'm the only one who could love someone like you. I know it."
I was going to make it short, but it ended up quite long, so I'm cutting it here for now. This has been the prequel to The Story of Hee and Haw. (Just kidding.)
It's a summer night, so I'll continue the ghost story. Just a little more.
After her explanation was done, the girl sighed and started back for her desk. "If only it weren't cram time, I'd be indulging in this convenient fantasy, getting an empty happiness from it," she said. "But not now. My future is on the line. You should have come sooner."
"Stop hogging the conversation," the boy said, drawing near her. "I think there's some kind of mistake here. And if I were a product of your desires, wouldn't I be acting the way you want? Doing exactly as you say?"
The girl slapped her own cheek. "Not giving into the temptation," she said, and continued her studies. But a few minutes later, her hands suddenly stopped. "Hug me tightly from behind," she ordered. "I don't wanna," the ghost declined. "Figures," she nodded.
"Even in my own fantasies, no one would be kind to me. It's been that way for a long time. I guess somewhere in my heart, I know that I'm not likeable. And as much as I fantasize, I can't fool myself of that. But that's okay. It's not good at all, but it's okay."
Giving up on proving himself as a ghost, the boy quietly left the room. Within a week, he came to realize that what the girl had said was absolutely true. His classmates and club friends stopped talking about him almost completely.
"Am I that easily forgotten?", he thought. Strangely, he wasn't sad at all. Which was because this wasn't something unique to him. Those who tried to forget him, too, would one day die, have "good stories" told of them, and then that would be all.
And for today, that is indeed all. Talking practically, if someone I loved appeared to me as a ghost, I probably would think "Ahh, I must be getting tired, and geez, I'm so pathetic for still being in love with her." But the story doesn't go anywhere from there.
Summer may have ended, but I'll continue telling ghost stories regardless.
Ultimately, the ghost stopped with his ego-search loitering, and came to hang around the one girl who still remembered him. "You were right," he said. "Everyone was quick to put my death in the past. I'm sure they were mourning just to get it over with."
He sat beside the girl, who silently stared at a textbook. "When I'm not caught in anybody's memories at all, that's when I disappear for good. But there's some time left until then. So I wanted to thank you, since you're the only one who properly remembered me." The girl earnestly pretended not to hear him.
"Tell me one wish," the ghost said. The girl's shoulder moved slightly. "You," she said, pointing at him, "are a pathetic illusion of mine, born from a convenient fantasy. I know that." Then she turned off the light and slipped into bed.
"Are you still awake?", the girl asked about thirty minutes later. He found it funny, as that's not something you ask a ghost. "Yeah, I'm awake." "So, about my wish." She sat up in the darkness and swung her legs to the side of the bed. "Hmm... I want you to watch me study."
"When you were watching me before, it actually helped me get some serious studying done. I made some good progress. So until you go away, I'd like you to watch me, from a little bit behind and to the right." The ghost tilted his head. "Should I really?" "You should."
The ghost accepted the odd request. At this point he had yet to realize it, but the girl was unconsciously aware. That she was the only one in the world who had him "caught" in their memories. That if the lingering thoughts she had for him lessened even a little, he would vanish right away.
That's all for today's ghost stories. Though I've never, ever believed in the existence of ghosts, I love ghost stories. Perhaps I'm interested in the gulf, so difficult to fill, between the living and ghosts. Communication between two who can never even touch each other - I've liked that sort of thing since I was a kid.
Posted August 25th, 2013