Seeing the Light (A Marie Jenner Mystery Book 1)

Seeing the Light (A Marie Jenner Mystery Book 1) by E. C. Bell Read Free Book Online Page B

Book: Seeing the Light (A Marie Jenner Mystery Book 1) by E. C. Bell Read Free Book Online
Authors: E. C. Bell
Tags: Paranormal & Fantasy
ran surprisingly smoothly. I was standing in my apartment at 1:57 in the morning, looking forward to a full five hours of sleep, when Sally wandered into the kitchen.
    She examined the counter tops with fascination, something I’d never seen her do before. I felt a touch of dread. New was never good. Not with ghosts.
    I tiptoed around her and into the bathroom to splash warm water on my face and wash the day away. Sally followed me, and stood next to me, staring at our reflections in the mirror. She’d never done that before, either. She glanced down at her hands, then back up at the mirror.
    “What’s going on?” she asked, staring right into the reflection of my bloodshot eyes. “What’re you doing here? And why do I keep sinking into the floor?”
    As if to push home her last question, she oozed a few inches into the cheap lino of the bathroom floor. She didn’t pull herself up to floor height, just walked through it as though through the surf on the beach.
    “Feels odd,” she said. “It should hurt, but it doesn’t.” She frowned. “Did you tell me your name?”
    “No.” I sighed as I watched my chance for a good night’s sleep disappear. “No, I didn’t. My name’s Marie.”
    “Why are you in my apartment?”
    “It’s my apartment, now.”
    Sally looked surprised and stepped up out of the floor to look me in the eye.
    “Did I forget to pay the rent?”
    “No. Nothing like that.”
    I dried my face slowly, carefully refolding the towel before facing Sally. This next bit was tricky. I remembered what it was like for Mom when ghosts became aware, but didn’t realize they were actually dead. For some reason, more often than not, this happened to drug addicts. Mom had never figured that out. I had some theories, but wasn’t going to test them now. I wanted some sleep, and I wouldn’t get it if Sally became hysterical. “Come into the kitchen. We need to talk.”
    The ghost started to shake as she followed me out of the bathroom. Then she frowned, and pointed. “Where’s my TV?”
    “This isn’t your apartment.”
    “Oh. Right.” Sally glanced around the fairly empty room, and her frown deepened. “Where’s your TV?”
    “I don’t have one.”
    She snorted. “You gotta be kidding. What do you do? You know, for entertainment?”
    “I don’t have much time for entertainment.”
    I shook my head, impatient with myself. This wasn’t helping Sally, and it sure wasn’t getting me any closer to sleep. “We have to talk.”
    “Okay.” Sally would not focus on me. She wandered around the small kitchen, running her hands—which were getting brighter by the moment—over the counter tops.
    “I loved this place,” she whispered. “It was the best place I ever had. In my whole life.” She smiled wistfully. “That’s kinda sad, isn’t it?”
    “It’s a nice place, Sally. You picked a very nice place.” I watched the woman fade, and tried to match the tone Mom had used. This wasn’t going to be hard. Sally was very close. I could feel it. “There are people who would never have had such a nice place.”
    “Yeah. That’s true. And I paid the rent. Every month.” Sally touched the faucet, and ran her hand into the sink. “So I guess that’s the best I could have hoped for. I did all right, I guess.”
    “Sally—”
    Sally held up her hand, stopping my words. “I died, didn’t I?” She glowered. “Was it an overdose?”
    “Yes.”
    “Son of a bitch! I knew that shit was bad.” She shook her head. “Well, you get what you pay for, I guess.” She glanced at me, a quizzical look on her face. “You some kind of an angel? You know, like that TV show?”
    I had no idea what she was talking about, and shook my head. “No. I’m not an angel.”
    “I gotta repent my sins, all that stuff—” Then she frowned. “Man, I’m too late for that, aren’t I?” She put her hand to her mouth and groaned. “I’m too late for all that. I thought I had time.”
    Sally began to

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