Friday, 19 October 2012

Halloween House of Horrors! RFW-Challenge No. 47 - Friday October 19th, 2012


















Welcome to Romantic Friday Writers Challenge No. 47 for Friday October 19th, 2012. RFWers is a fortnightly challenge that is founded by and hosted by and Donna Hole. For Challenge No 47, participants are asked to write a text 1000 words or less using the prompt, 'Halloween House of Horrors'. 
Scroll down past my text to read the challenge guidelines:







 Title: 'Jenny's Robinson Crusoe - Halloween '

(If you want to read the whole story so far go to this page: Lost and then Found)


It’s nearly Halloween, thought Jenny, as she sat writing in her journal, alone on the deserted island, where she and two friends had crash-landed almost four years ago.

Halloween, on this tropical island, was no different from any other time of year. There were no pumpkins to make jack-o-lanterns; there were no trick-or-treaters to give sweets to at one’s door. Jenny thought tearfully of her children, Colin and Sarah, and wondered if they would join a band of happy candy-hunters dressed as goblins, witches, pirates and ghosts.

Yes, ghosts. 'Give me a ghost or two!' Jenny said out loud.

After more than three years of waiting to be rescued, Jenny welcomed meeting the ghosts of her two friends who had died around the time of the crash.

‘Oh Jack,’ Jenny whispered, remembering the party in honour of his birthday; his very last. But no one knew that at the time. Except for perhaps one.  

Jenny ate her last substantial meal at Jack’s party and often dreamed about all the gourmet food there that she would never again consume.

‘Please haunt me, Jack!’ Jenny called out. She missed both Tom and Jack, but for different reasons. She had grown up with Tom and missed him like a brother, although she sometimes wished that she had married him instead of her husband, Paul.

‘Please haunt me, Jack. You can do it in my dreams,’ continued Jenny, beckoning to the wind. Jenny thought of Jack’s beautiful, warm smile with dimples and his intense ice-blue eyes. She tried to forget how she closed those lovely eyes when he was dead and how she had to bury both her friends. No. She wished to see them both again as they were in life; especially Jack who made her feel so intensely alive in the short time that she knew him.‘Please haunt me, Jack', she whispered.

That very night, Jenny dreamed about Jack.

‘Hello beautiful!’ Jack said in his most playful voice, ‘Why do you want me to haunt you?’

‘Oh, Jack, I miss you, and I can’t get the radio to work. I want to get out of here! And I’m so hungry!’

‘I see that you have made good use of my leather oxfords’ said Jack playfully pointing to her feet.

‘I’m sorry. I thought it a shame to bury them with you, I mean, your...' said Jenny embarrassed. 'Look. They fit me perfectly! I can climb around the island without cutting my feet on the rocks, which is what I would have done if I had worn my silly city sandals.’

‘It’s alright, Jenny.' reassured Jack, fatherly. 'I’m only teasing. I’m glad you can use them. Please wear them. I’ll even hide in them when you leave the island and come back with you. 
'You look sharp in my khaki clothes and hat too’, Jack said with a twinkle in his beautiful blues.'

‘My skin burns so easily in the sun. I am freckled enough as it is.’

‘My pleasure, Jenny’, Jack said pulling her toward him. His embrace felt warm and natural to Jenny. Oh how is this possible?, she thought.
‘Thanks, Jack. I just wish...’

‘No, Jenny. Let's not speak of regrets. Let me help you get off the island. And perhaps you can help me solve a couple of mysteries.

‘Anything, Jack!’ she said and kissed his cheek and then looked at him squarely in the face, ‘What mysteries?’

‘Mystery number one: If my wife, Myra, mailed my flight-plan to the authorities, someone should have been out looking for me and my aircraft, even if they mistakenly thought that you and Tom went down with that ship.

‘And what is mystery number two?’ asked Jenny already guessing what that might be.

‘Why did I die so suddenly?’

‘Yes, I have wondered about that. I assumed that it was a heart attack, but you did not seem to be a likely candidate for one.’ (When Jack slumped over in the cock-pit, he was just about to land on this tiny island. As co-pilot, Tom took over and crash-landed the plane on land rather than in the depths of the Pacific. While Tom was doing this, Jenny pulled and dragged Jack back toward the rear of the aircraft where she worked hard at trying to resuscitate him blowing air into his lungs and pounding his chest to try get him to breathe again. But he never regained consciousness.)

‘Exactly. Let’s do a little dreamtime-travelling together. Hold my hand and no one will  see us.’

With the speed of a film fade-out, it was more than three years earlier, and the invisible Jenny and Jack were standing in the middle of the decorated patio where Jack’s birthday party was about to begin.

Jenny’s mouth watered at the sight of all the party food, once again newly laid on the serving table before the guests would arrive.

‘Remember, Jenny’, warned Jack softly, ‘We cannot eat or do anything here. We are only here to observe.’

‘But I’m so hungry!’

‘I know, my sweet. You’ve been having a rough time, and you have been doing brilliantly. I’ve seen the way you’ve gathered food and been careful to boil your drinking water. But we cannot change anything here. We’re here to find out what happened. If we succeed, you will be able to return home and be with your family.’

‘You’re so thoughtful, Jack.’

‘And I need your help.'

'Why, Jack?' 

'I think that I may have been murdered.’

‘Oh no! But how could that be?’ asked Jenny trying not to think about how she really longed for a piece of pumpkin pie.

Reading her thoughts, Jack gave her a hug and a kiss, ‘All in due time.’


  
***

Word count: 977


[Text Copyrght Christina Wigren 2012]
------
Word count, according to WordCalc, for 'Halloween House of Horrors' is: 977; FCA; Full Critique Acceptable



















Best wishes,
Anna












P.S. 

This
story uses the characters, Jenny Holland and the pilot, Jack Richardson, in order to fit the criteria for the given theme: Halloween/ghosts/horror/mystery/romance. It is experimental, and may or may not fit into the final novel.

This text is fictional. Any resemblance to events, firms or to persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.


First Commenter:

Yolanda Renée


of

Defending the Pen
 

 








It's Halloween!

Another FW/RU Challenge

We’re looking for chilling stories of ghosts and haunted locations – and maybe even love from beyond the grave. 
A romantic element is essential, but we’re looking for stories with a thrilling edge of fear to add to the romantic tension building between our Hero/Heroine.

Have fun with this one! 
Don't forget the Romantic Element!

Let your head go! 
You can write up to 1,000 words of prose/prosetry!

19 comments:

Yolanda Renee said...

Oh, I love it!

The plot thickens! Unusual, someone wanting to be haunted. Enjoyed that twist, and it makes perfect sense when you're stranded on a island. But traveling back in time, to see all that food and not get to enjoy it. Torture!
Excellent, I'm enjoying the journey with your characters!

Kiru Taye said...

Oooh! A murder mystery. This is a very clever use of the theme, Anna. I really enjoyed it.

Now I have to read the rest next time to unravel the mystery.

Debra Ann Elliott said...

Love it and want to read more!

Heaven said...

I love the talking to the dead people and going back to time to unravel the mystery of the crash and death. The thoughts of food by Jenny made me laugh ~

I really enjoyed this share ~

Panchali said...

awww...poor hungry ghosts:( *smiles*
Scientifically one can go backward..but, once that happens, it could be such a treat!! Lovely..lovely tale!

Nas said...

Murder, mystery and romance?

Well done!

Sally said...

Hi Anna, it's so great that you can continue with your characters. It's great to have some hints of things that might or might not have happened and perhaps a murder thrown into the mix as well. I enjoyed reading this.

Charmaine Clancy said...

Your story's really starting to develop some good subplots! I love a good ghost detective story :)

Candilynn Fite said...

A murder mystery. Great entry for RFW. I loved your setting of being on a deserted island, alone, hungry, missing her family and friends, and wishing for a ghostly visit.

Nilanjana Bose said...

Love the suspense in the closure! Also how you have worked your WIP to fit the prompt. A unique take and so masterfully executed. I do hope you will include it in your final novel, it made great reading!

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Anna
The plot thickens. You did very well showing the experience of your character in this submission. A murder, a mystery and hopefully a way back.
Nancy

Donna Hole said...

And the mysteries deepen; adding a murder, and possibly sabotage to the trip. And, and murderous wife.

Love the spirited trip to the past to discover what happened while their backs were turned. Layers and layers. And, I'm getting hungry :)

........dhole

Denise Covey said...

Hi Anna, I've been meandering through the list and today I've worked my way backwards just for fun! So I'm a long time getting to you.
I love this twist to your story. So Jack thinks he was murdered does he? So intriguing! And it adds another layer to this plot. I like them time travelling together, but oh the cruelty of Jenny seeing all that food and not being able to partake.
She wants to be haunted huh? An unusual concept. But if you're stranded on an island, maybe even a ghost for company is better than no one, eh?
I love the way you're getting bolder with your prose. For example, 'With the speed of a film fade-out...' Great imagery. This really livens up a story.

So great entry for our Halloween 'fest. I hope you're enjoying reading all the stories as I've been.
Happy Halloween! :D

Denise Covey said...

Best of luck with the judging! I'm glad it's Ann and Nas who have to choose from this awesome lineup! :D

Erin Kane Spock said...

I loved this. The reference to the life going on without her was poignant. The small luxuries we take for granted, the horror of absolute solitude. I love that you sparked the beginning of a mystery with this -- either real or just in her head. Well written.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi, Anna,

I really enjoyed the sweetness of Jack's ghost. So sensitive and caring. It's nice to see a male character show tenderness. It's so rare.

Nice twist with the murder and flying back in time.

I really enjoyed this. I also liked the fact that Jenny didn't dive head first into all that delicious food. lol.

Francine Howarth: UK said...

Hi Anna,

Ooooh now, what a thought: a ghost who thinks he was murdered! Wow... You are getting in deep here with a crime element... Wonderful, and why not add another dimension to the overall plot. Well done, you... ;)

best
F

Tanya@allotments4you said...

Anna such great twists and turns and I just love the way you are revealing them all a little at a time backwards and forwards is making it so interesting and leaves me longing for the next instalment. As always so beautifully put together!!

Adura Ojo said...

A murder mystery befitting of Halloween. Now I must read the rest. Well done, Anna.

Anna, I'll be out of the loop for some time while I focus on my WIP and other projects. I do hope to visit you and other RFW members from time to time until I'm back in the fold:)

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