Thursday, December 3, 2015

Haunted: A Short Story by Sarah Jones

A Short Story by Sarah Jones.

“Hey, Jake. It’s me, as always. So, Jessica and I were at the mall today,” I say into my overly outdated phone. I pace the floor and continue talking. 
   “We stopped by the little pretzel shop that you and I used to go to every Friday after the football game. Their garlic pretzel bites are still the bomb. I don’t know if anyone even says that anymore. Of course, being there made me think of you. It made me think if how you used to tease me, ‘Molly, if you eat those I am not kissing you,’ you used to say. Ha. Anyway I just had to tell you that…” I pause then just say it. What I want to tell Jake every day for two years now, what I do tell him most days. “I miss you. God, I miss you. I miss it all, what we had, what we could have had, what we were going to have. I so wish our relationship hadn’t ended, not how it did, anyway. I love you, Jake Ford.”
   I hang up the phone. The time on the voicemail recorder would have run out in less than a minute anyway. Voicemails. I have been leaving my ex-boyfriend voicemails every few days, sometimes every day, or more, for two years. I talk about anything, my day, how my parents don’t get me, gossip, what I'm learning in school, what colleges I applied for, how I miss us, him. And for two years he hasn’t returned my calls. And he won’t. He never will and I have accepted that. He can’t, because he is dead. Jake Ford, the love of my life from eighth until tenth grade, died in a car crash. Still, it’s a mystery as to why he ran off of the road, over the railing of the bridge, down into the cold, dark water below.
   The clock on my teal desk reads 11:47 pm. I take out the Vogue magazine that I purchased earlier and flip to the article on Jennifer Lawrence. That woman is hilarious! And Katniss it a total baddie! How could anyone not like her? I'm halfway through reading the three page feature when my phone rings. It’s a familiar ringtone. Everything by Lifehouse. I freeze. I set that as his ringtone, only him calling makes that song play. My heart flips inside my chest. I get chills. Chills. Chills on top of chills. My heart pounds inside of me. I slowly turn my head and look at my phone, that music once seemed romantic, now it just seems eerie. Splayed on the screen is his name, Jake Ford, with ‘Calling’ under it.
   My heart pounds harder. My hand shakes as I reach out for the cell phone. I press the green button and hold the phone to my ear. “Hello?” I say cautiously, holding my breath now. Who would have his phone? It’s been in the same place for two years. His sock drawer in his room. I hear what sounds like breath passing over the microphone. Oh God. “Hello?” I manage to squeak out again. “J-Jake?” I know it can’t be. It’s dumb of me to even ask, he has been dead for years. Dead for years. Dead for years. “Who is this?!” I demand. I don’t give them time to respond.
   “Why do you have his phone?! How dare you?” I am almost shouting. Tears burn my eyes. “Who is this?” When I hear the breath again I gasp and stifle a sob. Dial tone. I hang up and toss my phone in front of me onto my pink comforter.
   “Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God.” I am breathing heavily. I sit on my bed with my head in my hands. I can't stop shaking. Why does it feel like I'm being watched? I'm really wishing my parents were home right about now. The house is too quiet, save for Everything still ringing through my head. It couldn’t have been Jake. He is gone. Departed. Dead. Someone just had his phone. But who? My chills just seem to be growing. A chill sets over me like a blanket of snow, but it’s summer. I grab the phone again, it's freezing. I look up into the mirror that hangs above my desk, something must be seriously wrong with me. My reflection is cloudy. I stand and touch the glass, I gasp. It's covered in ice...  That’s when I hear it.

   My name.
   His voice.

   I whip around clutching a pillow that I didn't even know I grabbed. No one is here. No one is in my room and yet I heard him. I heard him. My heart threatens to come out of my chest. Paranoia sets in. I close the curtains and stand in the middle of my room. Suddenly, I have to know. I have to know what is going on. I have to go find whoever is torturing me this way.
   Jumping off of my bed, gripping my phone, I run. Running to the only place I know to start. His parents’ house, his house, his room.
   Three blocks, six houses on the left, five on the right, one scaled tree and one silently opened window later, I am standing in Jake's old room. Directly above the living room where his parents are watching tv. It is a museum in here, a mausoleum, a tribute, or reminder, sealed and set in stone, frozen this way forever. Forever. Forever. Or maybe not… careful to avoid all the spots in the wooden floor I remember that creak, I walk over to the dresser and pull open the second drawer. It’s still full of his socks. I move a pair over. It’s there, the phone, right where he always left it when he snuck out. I pick it up and press a button, it’s off. If his phone is here, off, cold then who called me? I let out a breath I had been holding. I don't believe in ghosts, I tell myself.
   The air behind me shifts, my chills return, colder than before. No, Molly, nothing is there. Just calm down. Inhale, exhale.
   “Molly?” he says softly. Almost a whisper. My body tenses.
    I swallow the scream that is rising in my throat. I swallow hard. I turn around slowly, death grip on my phone. My heart is a bass drum. My ragged breaths come far too quickly. The moonlight sifting through the open window doesn’t help me see him much but his dark figure looms in the shadow between his bed and the closet, slightly taller than I remember. He steps out into the light.

   I intake a sharp breath.

Thanks for reading I hope you enjoyed this little chiller!



  1. It reminded us in class of "unfriended"
    You were discussed.....they think you're cool.

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  3. Your short story was great! I love it, keep up the astounding work! (It gave me the feels)

    1. Awh! Thank you so much, Ariana!

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.