Astoria, OR

February 19th, 2019

“You did not,” Caden said, rolling his eyes as he walked into the house.

“I did to,” called Alan, his younger brother, “I saw it! I did!”

Caden allowed the door to close on his younger sibling as he grinned at Alan’s furrowed eyebrows, his determined face, and of course the wild tufts of black hair that never seemed to stay put no matter how much he combed them down.

“Keep your voices down boys,” their mother called, “Aiden’s still napping and so help me if you wake him up…”

Both boys quieted down instantly as they walked into the kitchen where their mother was preparing dinner for the family. Their father was currently at work and wouldn’t be home for another hour while their youngest sibling, Aiden, was still upstairs napping in his room.

Opening the fridge to grab an apple Caden tossed one at his brother, who caught it despite the fact that he still looked a bit spacey and not all there. Rolling his eyes he closed the refrigerator door as he took a bite out of his own apple, enjoying the tart taste and crunch as he made for the living room.

“He see the ‘ghost’ again?” their mother asked as Alan left the kitchen on his way to the stairs where he would likely go to his room to check on his notes and make another entry. She and their dad entertained Alan’s fascination with the spirit world and all that stuff but Caden more grounded and didn’t believe in anything he couldn’t see, within reason of course. He’d stopped believing in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and all that jazz about five or six years ago, but he and Alan still maintained the fiction for their little brother Aiden, especially since their parents had asked them to.

“Yeah,” Caden said, swallowing his bite before walking out of the kitchen, “This time he said he saw her by the kitchen window though, so I knew he was seeing things. Probably a bird blew by the window and he thought he saw movement or something. I dunno.”

He was already out of the kitchen and didn’t see his mother stiffen as he spoke. Nor did he see as she looked seriously at the window he’d indicated, as though expecting to see something at any moment.

(to be continued)

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