Authors: Janet McNulty
Tags: #Mystery: Cozy - Paranormal - Ghosts - Vermont
I zipped up my suitcase relieved that the vacation was over. I carefully wrapped my camera. I never did get anything done on my Independent Study project. That meant when I got home I’d have to work double time to get it done.
The doctor had fixed up Jackie’s ankle pretty good. Turned out she had only cracked the bone, but she still had to have a cast on it for the next month. He was a kindly old gentleman and I really liked him. He even gave us all the paperwork and his notes on everything he did to give to her doctor when we got back home.
I stepped toward my closet to finish packing my things.
“No!” yelled Jackie. “Step away from the closet.”
“You are not opening that.” Jackie stumbled across the room; her cast thumping on the floor. She squeezed between me and the closet door. “The last time you opened your closet in this place, a dead body fell out. We are not taking any chances.”
“Jackie, don’t be silly.”
I reached past her and wrenched the door open. Out fell Rachel with her eyes closed and holding a white lily. She fell to the floor landing on her back making a good imitation of a dead man.
“See what I mean?” I said, “It’s nothing we can’t live without. We’ll just shove her back in there and go.”
“Hey,” said Rachel, “Show some respect for the dead.” She hopped to her feet dropping the lily.
Aunt Ethel burst into our room. “Mellow darling, you must see this.”
“When did you get an iPad?” I asked, noticing the electronic object in her hands.
“Oh, a while back,” said my aunt, “This nice young man in an electronic store said that it was an essential component of modern living. Almost forgot that I had it. Now look at this”
Aunt Ethel placed the iPad in front of Jackie and I. On it played the recorded video of how Jackie braved the buffalo, saved my aunt, and broke her ankle. It even captured the look of pure terror that had covered her face.
“And when I get back home, I am going to place it on that YouTube,” said Aunt Ethel, “Someone showed me how.”
“Wasn’t me,” blurted out Rachel.
“I’m sure the public will appreciate it,” I said.
Jackie’s pinched face told me not only was she beyond angry, but that I should have kept my mouth shut.
I finished packing my luggage. Jackie and I really needed to hit the road. “Well, Aunt Ethel,” I said, “it was a pleasure seeing you again, but we need to get going.”
“Oh, Mellow dear, can’t you stay a little longer?”
“We really need to get back.” I kissed my aunt on the cheek and bent down to pick up Jackie’s and my bags. Just as I reached for them, they picked themselves up and hovered in midair.
“I can take those,” said Jedidiah. “Least I can do after what you ladies have been through.”
Not arguing with him, we followed him out into the hallway where we ran right int
o Miss Hollywood, or Liz.
“Excuse me,” she said in a rude tone as Jedidiah accidentally bumped into her.
“Well, I’m sorry, ma’am,” said Jedidiah, tipping his hat.
“You almost made me ruin my pedicure.”
I studied the woman in her designer sports bra and exercise pants and flip flops. Now, I knew what Jedidiah had meant when he called us modern folk spoiled. Ruin her pedicure? Give me a break. Does that woman think about anything other than her appearance?
“It cost me like $200,” continued the woman.
“Sorry to hear that,” replied Jedidiah, “Seems like a waste of money if you ask me.” He proceeded down the hall and disappeared. For the first time, the woman noticed the suitcases moving on their own.
Rachel got a devilish grin on her face. Remaining invisible, she ran right into Miss Hollywood causing her to crash into one of the planters and get potting soil all over her. “Oops, my bad,” said Rachel.
The woman looked at all of us trying to figure out what just happened. Fuming, she screamed and smacked the floor with her fists.
The rest of us just walked away. I certainly didn’t feel sorry for her.
Once the car was packed up, Jackie and I pulled out onto the dirt road and headed for the highway. Aunt Ethel said she wanted to stay a few extra days, which was fine with me.
We found the highway easily enough. I was actually beginning to learn my way around the area. Unfortunately, twenty minutes after we did, a state trooper pulled us over. Oh curse Tiny and the naked lady he painted on my car. And just my luck, it was the same state trooper that had pulled me over when I had first arrived.
“License and registration please,” he said as he reached the driver’s side.
“Officer, I wasn’t even speeding,” I said. And I wasn’t.
“You were doing well below the speed limit,” he said.
You had got to be kidding me. “I was only doing five below that hardly justifies a tick
et. What is this quota time?”
I knew I should have kept my big mouth shut, but this was ridiculous.
“Step out of the car please,” said the trooper.
“Don’t do it,” said Rachel materializing in the back seat. “Tell him to buzz off.”
“Rachel, I can’t just—”
“Why’d he pull you over?” demanded Rachel.
“For doing five below the limit,” answered Jackie.
“What is this quota season?” said Rachel. “Tell him to take a hike.”
“Rachel, if I do that I’ll get arrested,” I said.
The trooper watched our exchange with interest and bewilderment. He couldn’t see or hear Rachel. “Uh, ma’am, I need you to step out of the car.”
“Not once Jedidiah gets through with him,” said Rachel, “He says this guy is a class A jerk. Likes to pull women over, if you know what I mean.”
“Where is Jedidiah?” I asked.
In answer to my question, the state trooper’s car turned itself on and sped down the highway with the lights going.
“Yee-Haw!” shouted Jedidiah through an open window.
The trooper watched his car drive itself. “Hey! That’s my—” he stopped talking when he realized that no one sat in the driver’s seat; well, no one but a ghost. The trooper chased after his vehicle.
“Just go,” said Rachel.
The trooper’s car did a U-turn and sped past us again.
“I ain’t ever been behind one of these contraptions,” shout
ed Jedidiah as he waved at us.
I watched as the trooper ran by us cursing his car as it continued down the highway.
“What if he—” I began.
“What’s he going to do?” said Rachel, “Tell his captain that his car drove itself while he was trying to give you a ticket?”
The distinct crunch of metal against a tree reached our ears.
“Or that it crashed itself?” asked Rachel. “Believe me. He isn’t going to want you around. Now go.”
I started the car and drove away while the state trooper circled his car with a string of curses. That was one ticket I managed to avoid thanks to a couple of ghosts. I hoped the rest of our trip was uneventful.
“You know the next vacation we take,” said Jackie, “is going to be Aunt Ethel free and in Florida with sandy beaches.”
“OOO, we should go there now,” said Rachel bouncing in the back seat, “I know the best Tiki Bar.”
Okay, so maybe unevent
ful was a bit much to hope for.
Two Ghosts Haunt a Grove
Janet McNulty currently resides in West Virginia where she moved after receiving her B.A. in History. She lives with her three cats who keep her on task.
Ms. McNulty has published a variety of books: a mystery series (The Mellow Summers Series), a fantasy series (Legends Lost), and two nonfiction books. Currently she is hard at work producing the third and final book for Legends Lost.
When not writing, Ms. McNulty enjoys just lounging around outside or reading a variety of books by a multitude of authors.
You can learn more about her and her writing at www.legendslosttrilogy.com
Follow her blog: http://booksandlegends.blogspot.com/
Follow on Twitter: JMRUL
Don’t miss out on more mystery, ghosts, and fun with these other books in the Mellow Summers Series by Janet McNulty.
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Now Available on Amazon.
Imagine living in a world where everything you do is controlled.
In the distant future the United States has been split into two regions separated by a barren wasteland; this is the country of Dystopia. Here the individual is discouraged, freedom is an illusion, food is rationed, and everything you do is tracked by a chip implanted in your arm. This is Dana Ginary’s world.
At age seventeen, people receive their career assignments chosen for them by a government body. Forced to work at the Waste Management Plant because she was declared too individualistic, Dana finds herself surrounded by death and brutality. Knowing her days are numbered, she looks for a way to leave the plant before she, too, b
ecomes one of its causalities.
It is then she meets a man named George and soon finds herself caught up in a cat
and mouse game between the resistance and the Dystopian government. Dana finds herself faced with an agonizing choice of whom she will betray and whom she will save: her friend George, her parents, or herself.