"Elisha" - Your Story #42 Finalist

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"Elisha" - Your Story #42 Finalist

Postby TiffanyLuckey » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:06 pm


“I’ve got to get out of these clothes—fast.” The front door slammed behind her as Elisha began to scream. Suddenly, she plowed past me and up the creaking staircase. I watched as she clawed her way to the second floor of the house we had rented just the month before. As my sister reached the landing, she was bathed in the afternoon light that was streaming through the huge stained glass window. I watched in utter shock as Elisha, writhing in “agony”, disappeared into the enormous kaleidoscope of radiant light just above me.

Yesterday, as dawn broke, I was awakened by a strong scent of cloves and a sensation of dread. This had occurred nearly every week since we’d moved into this rambling house in the restorative air of the Adirondacks. I’d kept the experiences to myself, but I was alarmed, as the events were becoming more intense and more frequent.

Early this morning, the feeling of dread awoke me from my slumber once more. As I peered about my room, I watched in horror, as the embers of the fireplace suddenly flared green and blue and the scent of cloves filled the air once again. In the dim darkness that shroud the room, with my nerves taut and my body strained, I lay still until dawn, praying that it was only a dream and that things would returned to normal. They did—but not for long.

Once the bright light of day had fully illuminated the room, I dressed quickly and rushed down the twisting back stairs into the ancient kitchen. Elisha was already up, as there was coffee on the stove, but she was nowhere to be found. She had taken to wandering again.
Coffee in hand, I walked to the screen porch overlooking the yard and waited. As I rocked, I worried, “Would we both leave this house alive?”

Elisha and I had rented this furnished house from an elderly widower. Loneliness had driven Mr. James to his daughter’s home. He’d left everything behind. This was 1923 and he’d spent thirty-two happy years in residence. The day we met, as tears filled his eyes, Mr. James reminisced, “Dear Helen remains, but I must go. My memories must now sustain me.” We thought we understood.

By noontime, as I continued to wait for Elisha, my sense of dread returned. Were we fools to believe that we could escape our past and truly start anew? Anxiously, I feared, “Would we be followed?”

But, as I basked in the sun, watching eagles fly effortlessly on thermals and wildflowers swaying in the summer breeze, once again I began to believe that we could. Slowly, my sense of dread abated. By evening, this dream would vanish.

When Elisha returned she was agitated but clean. Her wanderings inevitably took her through the grove of hemlocks to the cool stream within. She always returned muddy and wet. This time, although clean, she was frightful. I knew immediately that we had not escaped. Elisha’s demons had followed us to this lovely place as well.

As my sister paced and paced and wrung her hands, I prepared for her descent into hell. In deference to Helen, I cleared the tabletops and emptied the rooms of small tables and lamps. I changed my clothes, gathered blankets, then waited and watched. Elisha finally began her descent. She stood quietly still, staring into space, speaking to people only she could see. As her demons possessed her, she dropped to the floor, rolling over and over again. Elisha was gone. She had entered another world, where no one could help or save her.

The afternoon lurched forward, as Elisha thrashed on the floor. I did what I could to protect her. Finally exhausted, she lay still. Blanketing her while she slept, I was relieved for a moment’s reprieve.

I crept to the front porch to catch my breath, when Elisha arose from oblivion. With the strength of ten men, she destroyed the dining room table. As I rushed to the room to find a fire on the carpeted floor, she ran out of the house and along the front porch.

In desperation, I ran to the hallway to get the fire bucket when Elisha crashed in through the front door screaming that her clothes were on fire, when in fact, they were not.

I watched helplessly as Elisha clambered up the front stairs and propelled herself through the glorious glittering window and into Paradise.

old tinner
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Re: "Elisha" - Your Story #42 Finalist

Postby old tinner » Sat Jun 16, 2012 5:47 pm

This is a good story, i like what you did with it.

Trula Varnum
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Re: "Elisha" - Your Story #42 Finalist

Postby Trula Varnum » Fri Jul 20, 2012 9:09 am

I really enjoy your writing. Vivid descriptions while rolling the story along. Just incredible.

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