Tag Archives: horror

The Ball – the Old Mill

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  Invitation.  The Table of Contents is here)

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With a look over my shoulder, I entered the mansion. I let the door close naturally behind me.  The hall was empty when full of light, but as the light faded with the shutting door, Martha became visible.  When the door was completely closed, she looked full and solid, the middle-aged version of Martha.  She was wearing the party dress, I realized that Mike was right, that the dress custom tailored for the 15-year-old Martha fit the middle aged one very tightly, making her look both a little ridiculous, and slightly sexy at the same time.   We walked towards each other and stopped a little more than an arm’s length apart.  I pulled out my invitation.

“I’ve returned, but this time with invitation in hand,” I said.

“And you are just in time, Mr. Baxter,” she said.  “The ball has begun.”  I grew aware of the faint music from above us.  “I need to say a few words so you truly understand what you are about to witness.”

“Sounds good to me.”   She turned old for a flash, then returned to middle-aged.

“First, understand that you can see our world more than most of the living, so we can see you better than we can see most of the living.” Continue reading

Invitation – The Old Mill

wilton

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  Amy and Jessica (Part 2).  The Table of Contents is here)

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I had just finished my dinner and was trying to decide how I’d handle the evening when I heard a loud knock on the door.  Walking to the front of the house I couldn’t see anybody in the drive or parked on the road.  Nobody had driven away either.  I assumed that whoever had knocked must have walked to the house.

I stood for a minute, looking out the window, but there was nothing.  As soon as I turned my back on the door, the knock came again.  I spun around and opened it, yet there was nobody on the doorstep or any place else that I could see.  I walked onto the porch and then down to the drive.  I looked around.  Not a living soul was around.

Going back into the house I discovered a card on the porch by the door. I picked it up and read it. Continue reading

Amy and Jessica (Part 1) – The Old Mill

Mill Building

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  Lyndsey 3.  The Table of Contents is here)

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Thursday turned out to be a great day at work.  You know the type; the ones were everything goes exactly right and it makes you feel that anything bad that has happened in your career was totally worth it.  That was my work day.  Everything went so smoothly.  Everyone, from the customers to the executives to the coders beneath me, all had good things to say.  I can’t imagine things running as smoothly as they did that day.  And yet I had a hard time enjoying it.  I felt that the gods were playing with me.

Near the end of the day, I sent just that in a text to Lyndsey, “Work was fantastic – the gods must be playing with me”.  She answered, “I know exactly what you mean :- (“.  I’m sure she did.

When I got home, I wasn’t surprised to see Jessica’s truck in my driveway, but there was a car I didn’t recognize.

As I got out, Jessica came around from the front of the house with a woman in tow.  After a half of a second, I realized that it was Amy Lansing. Continue reading

Lyndsey 3 – the Old Mill

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Mill at Night.  The Table of Contents is here)

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Wednesday was long and tiring.  I spent a large chunk of the day in a meeting with the top executives and was grilled about some issues in the development department.  Thankfully it wasn’t a problem with any of my teams, so nobody was pointing at me, but since I was acting for Kunhal, the buck stopped at me for the day.  I sent a few random texts to Lyndsey and she responded in kind.  I was hoping for a good conversation with her in the evening.  I needed it.

The beginning riff from Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” shouted out from my cell phone.

“Hi Lyndsey,” I said.

“Hey Gill.  How’re you doing?” she asked.

“Much, much better now that I’m talking to you.  It was a very long day.” Continue reading

The Mill at Night – The Old Mill

 

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Library 2 (part 4).  The Table of Contents is here)

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I knew my eyes were open, but there was nothing, nothing at all.   My numb mind could only repeat the obvious, that it was dark, pitch black.  I started to take a step, but stopped, feeling dizzy, disorientated.  Where was I?  My eyes began to catch glimmers.  I saw that there were windows and some stray beams were entering through them.  As my eyes adjusted, I could tell where I was.

I was in the old mill. Continue reading

The Library 2 (Part 4)

loading_dock_bw

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Library 2 (part 3).  The Table of Contents is here)

(Note 2 – This is Part four of a four part chapter)

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“After the ‘Thomas versus the world’ part,” Mike said, “we have the ‘sibling rivalry’ part. I have to say, the saga of George and Martha is my favorite chapter of the Goode story.”

“That sounds, well, a little sick,” I said

“‘A little sick?’  No, a lot sick.  You haven’t heard it yet.”

“You’re right, I haven’t heard much.  I know there was little love between them.”

“To back up a second, after Thomas died, his brother, Samuel came up and spent a lot of time helping to get the family settled.  He had recently married and his wife helped with George.  But as his responsibilities grew and his family grew, he spent less and less time in Amesbury.  You have to remember that it was quite the hike out here from Boston, a major journey.”

“I can imagine.  It’s a major hike driving today, particularly when the traffic is bad, which it always is in Massachusetts.”

“Right.  I think you need a time machine and live it for a while to understand what ‘a major journey’ means.  Actually, so do I.  I heard you hang out with the Wallaces.  They’re clever.  Can one of them build us a time machine?”

“I’ll ask.” Continue reading

The Library 2 (Part 3) – The Old Mill

Wilton Mill and water fall

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Library 2 (part 2).  The Table of Contents is here)

(Note 2 – This is Part three of a four part chapter)

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“Before we get into the ball itself, I have to bring up one thing I forgot I forgot to mention.”

“Martha’s boyfriend, Samuel.”

“Yes, how did you know?  Samuel Larson, who was about 18, was the oldest son of one of the mill owners in town.  Of course Thomas owed more money to William Larson, Samuel’s father, than just about anyone else except Alexander.   Samuel and Martha had been making googly-eyes at each other for over a year, and the ball was going to be a time when they could actually dance together.  Remember, it was her coming out party.  Everyone expected a marriage announcement by summer.”

“Since I know a bit about Martha, I can only guess it turned out poorly.” Continue reading

The Library 2 (Part 2)

Old Mill on two Rivers

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter was  The Library 2 (part1).  The Table of Contents is here)

(Note 2 – This is Part two of a four part chapter)

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“After Samuel and his two sisters left, Thomas went right back into his old routine,” Mike said.  “Nobody ever found out what it was, but he sure lost money hand over fist while doing it.”

“Ouch,” I said.  “You’ve already talked about debt.”

“It got worse.  He sold a lot of land and other mills were built in Amesbury on land that he had previously owned and planned to use.  And then, to stay afloat, he took loans from all of the other mill owners.  It wasn’t good.”

“I can tell.”

“Since history repeats itself, I’m sure you can guess that one day he came home to another preemie child, a boy this time.  Ignoring the calendar, he named it Thomas Jr.”

“How nice.  He had his father’s name, if not his eyes.”

“Exactly, though as the boy aged everyone talked about how much he looked like his father, meaning Thomas.  Maybe he was the father and history is just unkind.  Nobody at the time seemed to think anything was out of place.  People said the boy favored the father more than the mother and he looked like a younger version of Martha.  They say she doted on him.”

“It’s nice to hear a human side of her.”

“As opposed to a ghostly side? That was in 1811.  In 1813 there was another child, Abigail.”

“Sweet.  One for mom, one for dad.”

“Exactly.  Margret took a shine to little Abby.  They were inseparable, though she loved the little Thomas as well, almost as much as Martha did.  She was a very maternal girl, which continued into adulthood.” Continue reading

The Library 2 (Part 1) – The Old Mill

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter he  was  Galvin2.  The Table of Contents is here)

(Note 2 – This is Part one of a four part chapter)

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I walked through town at a fast clip, ignoring everything and everyone around me.  There was a light mist, which I ignored.  I always walk when I need to think things through, even if were raining, as it was the night before.  And as I walked, I was thinking things through, but I’m sure someone observing me would have noticed a difference, a nervous energy.  OK, I’ll admit it, I was agitated.  Very agitated.

I had talked to Lyndsey again Sunday evening.  I don’t know how to describe it, but I could actually feel the bonds grow tighter every time we had one of those chats.  I’ve known her forever, and even when she wasn’t in my life, I heard about everything she was doing through Jessica.  I know it was the same the other way as well, that Jessica talked to Lyndsey about me.  The hints and jokes Jessica made that we should get together and get marry weren’t just for my ears.  Talking to her, Lyndsey seemed to know more about the things I’ve done over the last 20 years than my closest family members, and sometimes myself.  This all became more obvious every time we talked.  It was as if we had already had this long-term relationship and were finally acknowledging it.

At the end of the conversation, I told her I loved her.  Playing her best Princess Leia, she said, “I know.”  But then we ended up talking about love for another 15 minutes. Continue reading

Galvin 2 – The Old Mill

(This is the latest installment of the series that starts with The Old Mill.  The previous chapter he  was  Lyndsey 2 (Part 2).  The Table of Contents is here)

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After my call with Lyndsey, I puttered around the house for a while, but felt restless.  I really didn’t have breakfast, so I decided to go down to Maude’s for a bit of brunch.

Galvin was standing outside of Maude’s, as if expecting me.

“Hey Gill, buy me a cup of coffee?”

“Sure, Galvin.  I was just on my way in for some brunch.  You can have a Danish or something too, so you don’t feel uncomfortable sipping coffee while I’m eating.”

“Don’t mind if I do.”

Maude’s granddaughter, Em, poured us a coffee as we sat down.  She came back a minute later and took our orders.  When she walked away I looked over at Galvin.

“What’s up?” I asked.  “I’m sure there was something more than you needing a bit of caffeine.” Continue reading