Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Prompt: Write a story in which a ghost serves as your main character. Your character died in a tragic accident and is watching his/her family live on without them.

Carrie watched the ceremony in silence. She couldn't believe it was here already. It seemed like just a few days ago she had started her freshman year of high school and now she was watching her graduation ceremony. Tears slowly slid down her face as she watched her twin brother walk across the stage and get his diploma.

She never though she'd have to watch this from the audience, and here she was standing in the back of the auditorium watching her entire class graduate without her. The only thing that upset Carrie more than not actually graduating was the fact that the person who had prevented her from sharing today with everyone was now walking across the stage to get her diploma.

Just 3 months prior, Carrie had been on her way home from work around 10:30pm. She was sitting at a stop light, not even 3 blocks from home when it all happened. She had seen something in her rearview mirror that had caught her eye, and she looked back to see headlights quickly coming at her, and before she know what was happening the night was shattered by the sounds of tires squealing, metal crunching, and horns blaring.

Almost instantly Carrie found herself watching the scene happen in slow motion from the sidewalk. She watched as her own car was shoved into the intersection and then crushed by an oncoming semi. Carrie's attention snapped between the scene of her own lifeless body being pried from the twisted metal skeleton that used to be her car and her family huddled and sobbing across the street from the crash. Carrie knew exactly what hat happened, and she couldn't help but be so frustrated at not being able to tell them what had happened.

Shannon's brakes had failed. There was nothing she could do about that. Carrie wasn't mad about that, or at Shannon at all for that matter. How could she be? What she was mad about, however, was that all of her dreams had been destroyed in that crash. She had been accepted to her top choice University with a full ride scholarship for soccer, and she was well on her way to being a journalist like she had always hoped to be. Starting in the fall she had an internship with a local newspaper editor who would be able to get her ready for anything.

Carrie's thoughts drifted back to the ceremony, and she barely heard the last few lines of the speech being given by the class valedictorian, which really would have been Carrie.

She waited outside for everyone to emerge from the hall, and was curious to see her family's reactions to the flowers left on Derrick's car. Obviously Carrie couldn't tell them they were from her, but she was sure they would understand somehow. She and Derrick always had this connection about certain things, and she had been seeing things through his eyes since the crash. Derrick hadn't said anything to anyone about it, nor had he let Carrie know that he knew what was happening, but he knew everything his sister was doing still. He couldn't always see her, but he always knew when she was there. He had found it a bit strange at first, but the thought of his sister still watching over him comforted him after a while.

Carrie watched as their whole family swarmed around Derrick for hugs, pictures, congratulations and the whole 9 yards. Derrick stood back holding two diplomas up for the camera, his own and the one Carrie would have received. Carrie could tell he felt uncomfortable, as Derrick never liked to be the center of attention and since he had no one to share today with all eyes were on him. After what seemed like hours, the family separated and said their goodbyes before leaving the school. Derrick had insisted on driving on his own, and he hugged his parents goodbye before they got in the car and pulled away. Carrie watched him intently from behind, waiting for some kind of reaction to the flowers.

"You know I can still hear you, right? I've always been able to, ever since, you know..." He trailed off. The accident had devastated him, and he found it extremely hard to talk about it, even to his dead sister. "I can....I can still see you, too."

"Derrick?" Carrie asked cautiously. Derrick turned around slowly and looked her directly in the eyes.

"Do you have any idea how hard this is for me? I mean, I know it's hard for you, being...well, y'know...."

"Dead?" Carrie finished for him. "Yea, it's not exactly a walk in the park for me either. Why didn't you say anything to me before?"

"Because I thought I was dreaming it. I didn't want to say anything until I was sure I wasn't dreaming. Now that I know I'm not, well, here we are."

The pair talked for nearly an hour before they were interrupted by their parent's calling Derrick to see where he was. Ever since the accident they were always more protective than ever. They had lost one child, and they were going to do everything in their power to make sure they didn't lose another one. Derrick assured them he was fine, and that he'd be home shortly.

"I've gotta go. D'you want a ride?" He asked cautiously.

"I'll beat you home even without the car." Carrie said with a smirk. Even though she was dead, she still had that competitive edge about her that she and Derrick had always shared.

"Not if I can help it," Derrick grinned and jumped in his car.
15 minutes later Derrick burst into his room, and went to crash on his bed but stopped in his tracks when he saw his sister already sitting there.

"What the hell! How did you manage that?" He asked in awe.

"Derrick...I'm a ghost. Do I really need to explain that?" She laughed.

"I guess not. That's just creepy though," He said chuckling.

"How is this not totally weirding you out?" Carrie asked him. "I mean, if it was me and I was talking to my dead brother I'd be freaking the hell out."

"Well, I told you earlier....I've been able to hear you, and almost read your mind ever since the crash...and I was certain I had seen you, but I wasn't totally sure so I never said anything to you, or anyone else for that matter." Derrick said, as if it was totally obvious.

"So...you leave tomorrow, don't you? For your internship?" Carrie asked, quickly changing the subject.

"Yea...my flight leaves at 8:10am, so we'll have to be out of the house by about 6am. And it's a 13 hour flight, and you know how much I love flying." Derrick joked.

"Heh. Yea, you and planes get along really well..." Carrie laughed at the thought. She knew her brother hated flying, and the thought of him spending 13 hours on a plane by himself was a bit amsuing.

"Yea..." Derrick started to say, but trailed off. The two sat in silence for a few mintues, both trying to think of something to say.

"Not that I have anywhere to go, but I should really let you sleep. It's after midnight, y'know." Carrie said. As much as she wanted to spend time with her brother still, she didn't want to keep him up.

"I know this is gonna sound really weird, but can you meet me there? I mean, I'll have my own appartment, so it won't be that weird if I'm talking to a ghost..." Derrick said a bit sheepishly. He was never one to ask favors of anyone, but he really wanted her to say yes.

"Well...I mean....sure, I guess. It's not like I have anything else to do," Carrie said grinning.

"Great! I guess I'll see you tomorrow then...right?"

"Sure...see you then."

Derrick blinked and she was gone, but he slept well that night knowing he hadn't really lost his sister, and that she would be waiting for him tomorrow night when he finally arrived at his new place.

1 comment:

weintertwined said...

I really liked it. I loved the relationship between the siblings and how they cans still somehow understand eachother.
Also, I liked how Carrie found comedy in the whole situation, like when she thinks of her brother on the airplane.

Good job, you're really talented.