Ghost River – 13

October 24, 2006 at 4:35 pm (Ghost River)

She didn’t have to tell me who she was. I already knew. What surprised me was how much we knew about each other. Seeing her, I knew exactly who she was, and she knew exactly who I was. We knew everything about each other.

For her to appear only could mean one thing – that it was time to cross over for good. She pointed to the woods, and I understood I was to follow. I dropped my rake and we went up the hill together, past the meadow, to the thicket where the burial mounds are.

Where there had been two, now there were three. The third was new – the black soil was freshly turned. We walked to the edge and she pushed me in. I fell through the earth into darkness. I felt a complete sense of peace. Then the darkness lightened and I saw that I was somewhere else entirely.

We were standing on a large sandbank gazing out over the ocean. Soft waves rolled in against the shore. In the air above large white birds darted and soared. At the far edge of the ocean, rainbow light radiated from the horizon. We stood next to each other, and I felt incredibly happy, as if all the good fortune that had ever existed had just been given to me.

I looked up from the booth at the Anti-Temperance Tavern. Simone, the fierce, red-haired bartender who ruled over the realm of quiet intoxication was staring at me and shaking her head.

“My God. Just look at you.”

I stumbled home. I looked at myself in the mirror and laughed. I was not the same. It had been a long time since I had been in the flesh.

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