Welcome to the October Frights Blog Hop!
A little break from the ghosts today, although we do stay with the recently dead. Today’s terrifying treat is a two for one. A double tale take on the afterlife…
Waiting for You...
It breeds fear in the mind. Most tuck it away or dismiss it as an overactive imagination. I know better. I know what lurks in that darkness, the things that hunger.
I know because I’m one of them.
One of the leftover dead.
One of the Forgotten.
That’s what we call ourselves, we revenants of once living things. Most of us are simply echoes of who we used to be. Mist and miasma held together by damaged emotions and need. The reality of what the living refer to as ghosts.
There are others here as well, in this afterlife netherworld, things a bit more tangible, a bit more bloodthirsty. I don’t like to think of them. They are best avoided by the living and the dead.
Yet, we all live in the darkness.
That surreal place in-between the shadows. We are the cold touch on your spine, the whispered breath on the nape of your neck.
We are death.
We are waiting.
We are waiting to feed…
Welcome To Your Afterlife
“Welcome to the Afterlife check-in. Name please.”
Dave stared at the tall, blond… man, standing behind the podium.
“You have wings.”
“Yes, yes I do. It is a common feature among angels. Name please.”
“Why do you have wings, and—wait did you say angel?” Dave gaped at his hushed, mist-covered surroundings. “Where am I? The last thing I remember is a bright light…”
“That would have been the headlights of the semi-truck that hit you. You died sir, and this is the Afterlife check-in. Now, can I please have your name?” A hint of exasperation crept into the angel’s voice.
“Um, it’s Dave Tillman.” Dave watched the other man—no, angel—rifle through a very large book. “I’m dead? For real? This isn’t just a wacky dream?”
“You are quite dead, sir. Here you are.” The angel stopped flipping pages in his book. “Oh my. This is unusual. A rarity indeed.” The angel closed his book with flourish. “It appears, sir, you have been granted the singular privilege of choosing your afterlife. Congratulations.”
The angel moved from behind the podium and held out his hand. “If you would come with me please.”
The angel led Dave to what appeared to be a TV screen hanging in mid air. A remote materialized in the angel’s hand.
“You’ve been given three options to choose from. Please watch the screen as I run them.”
He clicked the remote and Dave looked at the images on the screen. The first scene showed a sunny beach resort.
“I’m not too crazy about sun and sand. Next.”
A click of the remote and Dave viewed a busy casino. “That looks okay. Maybe. What’s next.”
“This one is our Happy Home Package, sir.”
An image of a luxury home popped on screen, shifting to an interior shot of a living room boasting a big screen TV and a plush recliner. Several beers were visible on a side table.
“Now that looks good. What else comes with it?”
“The package come complete with a red Ferrari, a blond, well-endowed homemaker wife, no tedious chores or job, 1000 TV channels—500 of which are sports networks—and a billionaire’s bank account.”
“Now that does sound good. I’ll take that one.”
“As you wish.” The angel snapped his fingers.
The world around Dave vanished, and he found himself inside a opulent home, just like the one on screen.
Dave grinned. “Now what?”
“Now you live out your afterlife, sir. Right here. Forever.” The angel smiled.
For some reason Dave shivered.
“Why don’t you look out the window, sir, at your new neighbourhood.”
“Okay.” Dave moved and peered out the picture window. “It’s kind of quiet. Nobody around. Is that part of the package? No noisy neighbours? If so, I like that—wait, I think there is someone. Hey! Someone is out there. Someone’s running toward—”
Bang! The window thumped and cracked as a body threw itself against the glass. Dave yelped and scrambled backward. Rotting hands fumbled against the pane, trying to get inside.
Dave screeched. “That’s a zombie! A zombie! What-what is this? What’s going on?”
“This is the deluxe Happy Home package, sir. Here comes your lovely wife now, with a plate of cookies fresh from the oven.”
A tall, blond, buxom woman, with a rotting smile, and a pus infected face shuffled into the room. She did indeed carry a plate of warm cookies, wonderfully decorated with maggots.
Upon seeing her “husband” she hissed, “Brainnnsss!” and dropped the plate. She made a beeline toward Dave, who snatched up a nearby chair.
Fending off his “wife” with the chair, Dave shrieked, “Help me! Get me out of here!”
“I can’t, sir. The rules you know.”
“Rules? What rules?” He ducked his head as his “wife” swiped at his ear trying to get around the chair. More and more zombies were banging at windows and smashing at the front door. Slowly the glass and wood were starting to give way. “You have to help! This isn’t what I ordered!”
“Oh, but it is. Did I forget to mention? I’m a fallen angel, and this is Hell’s Afterlife check-in. Happy eternity!”
The angel disappeared in a haze of laughter, as the wood splintered on the front door and several windows shattered. Zombies poured into the house.
Dave's shrieks were drowned in the ear-splitting, chanting chorus of "Brainnnsss!"
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