Ghostly Pursuits Part 1 of 2

Have a random story! Actually this was a submission for an online magazine but alas! It wasn’t what they’re looking for. I decided to post it up here instead. It was a last minute written thing so meh. I split the submission into 2 parts.

Maybe I’ll add another part since the ending for the whole story was actually pretty rushed.

Have part 1 of 2 (or 3?). It’s not that woah as my usual stuff since I wrote it in a slightly emergency manner? I had no idea what I wanted to call it so I went with the cheesiest title in mind when I submitted it.  It’s in 1st POV so HAH. It started out as 3rd but I did a replace/find to turn it into 1st to beat the deadline since I write faster in that. In any case, here!

Ghostly Pursuits (Part 1)

by Seriously Sarah

They say there’s a lack of magic nowadays with the advance of technology. Whoever “they” were, they were either lying or had no idea what magic felt like. It was in the air, in the ground, pretty much everywhere and it was stifling. They should have said that there was a lack of people using magic nowadays. Instead, the abundance of it all kept me in a pleasant mood all of the time.

I could feel it and it permeated through me, caressing every fibre of my being. Cliché, I know but it was the source of my forever happy mood because no one was using it and I was getting too much of it. Frankly, it sort of sucked because I could not feel anything else except the delicious taste of magic.

It was also because of this that I was still cheery even if I was standing outside the gate of an abandoned bungalow in the dark of midnight with a ghost hovering next to me.

I looked down at my mud caked grey Converses, my dark long hair curtaining my face from seeing the thing beside me.

I was perpetually happy, it didn’t mean I was perpetually stupid.

“Apa khabar, kawan…” the ghost whispered.

Oh, great. It was talking to me. I couldn’t pretend any longer since it was obvious the ghost knew what I could see her. Best to be polite after all, considering the circumstances.

“Er, khabar baik? I can’t really speak Malay, do you know English?” I asked, still looking down.

I was much better in Mandarin and the only thing she knew in Malay were greetings and food names such as Nasi Lemak. I doubted that was very useful at the moment since I wasn’t at the hawker centre.

“Why yes, the children love to teach it to me, you know. Why don’t you look up, sayang?” said the ghost.

I looked up cautiously even if I couldn’t help smiling cheerily at the ghost hovering in front of me. I knew what it was according to the descriptions I read in a popular local series of ghost stories. It was the Hantu Tetek.

No one could ever mistake a Hantu Tetek for any other type of ghost. I wondered briefly if the ghost would think me for a pervert for smiling at her. Well, it wouldn’t be entirely my fault though. For one thing, a Hantu Tetek was pretty much naked and that had such large breasts that reached the floor. Hantu Tetek was “breast ghost” in Malay for obvious reasons.

The full moon was covered by the dense clouds and I wondered briefly if it was going to rain soon. What illumination I had came from the glow of the ghost that was curiously looking at me.

“Are you… going to shove me to your boobs or something now?” I asked carefully.

The ghost grinned as she hovered before me, her long sleek black hair tickling my nose. She stopped once more in front of me after twirling around as if satisfied with her inspection.

“No, you’re too old to be a child. What I do want to know is why you’re outside and not inside,” asked the ghost.

I couldn’t help looking at the ghost, it was a fascinating to see her glowing and yet be semi transparent as if I could stick a hand in her. Ok, so it was even more fascinating to see how the lack of physics affected this particular ghost because hello, really booby ghost here?

Still, from the tales I had heard, it was good that I was too old for her. Children who wandered after sunset were usually taken by her and hidden from their parents to be lost in another world.

Not that would affect me, of course.

“Oh. I didn’t want to attract things to my friends! Things get attracted me… Things like you,” I answered.

The ghost nodded and drifted away from me. Really, it was very fascinating to see her move around. It came up close to me once more, grinning at me.

“Can I lick you? You smell very different, I bet you taste nice,” she asked politely.

“Um, no. No, you may not lick me. If you can tell that I’m different, you should know that I can do uh, stuff! Scary powerful stuff especially to ghosties like you!” I exclaimed.

“Hmm, then are you sure you should be out here? The Pontianak is inside and she isn’t as nice as me. She’s probably more attracted to normal people though,” stated the ghost.

“What did you say?” I asked.

“The Pontianak is inside,” repeated the ghost.

I stared at the Hantu Tetek and she stared back at me.

“Well, crap!” I exclaimed cheerily.

A sudden sense of alarm filled me which in turned made me suck up more magic which naturally made me giddy with pleasure. I frolicked into the bungalow to search for my friends.

A Pontianak was attracted to people with or without my help. It was a she. It was always a she for some reason when it was a ghost around here. The only thing with Pontianaks was that they weren’t just typical ghosts, they were vampires too. They were creepy vengeful beings that attacked or possessed people.

“Linaaaa, Yahssir, everyone? Are you guys here?” I called out.

It was quiet in the bungalow and it seemed bigger inside from what was seen outside. The Hantu Tetek drifted close by, the glow from her translucent body enabling me to see where I was going. I was starting to panic. Being panicked while being so happy was a weird feeling but it was better than just being panicked and afraid.

The downside was that whenever I panicked, I sucked up more magic to compensate for it and in turn, it was a weird never ending cycle that usually made me hysterically giggly.

Meanwhile as I kept myself from laughing aloud, I had four friends somewhere in the bungalow. It was our school holidays and we wanted to have something fun and relaxing so we booked a chalet at Pulau Ubin, a neighbouring island that was close to Singapore.

Naturally, they wanted to go hunt for ghosts because the bungalow that I was currently in was a famous haunted place and it was a thing to do if you were ever in the area.

One other reason that I preferred to stay outside was so that I could be a lookout in case someone noticed us trespassing on private property.

“Why are they quiet? Why are you here anyway?” I asked.

“Because you smell so nice!” answered the ghost.

“Gee, thanks, really. Linaaa! Where are you guys? Oh heck this, let me just call her,” I mumbled.

Pulling out my cell phone, I dialled Lina’s number. Instead of hearing the typical dial tone, I heard an automated voice that told me that the number I was currently dialling was unavailable. I gave a little glare at the screen of the phone before looking up at the Hantu Tetek.

“It’s not my fault!” said the ghost as she jiggled closer.

“No, I suppose not. This is so wonderful, wonderful. I have no idea where my friends are and a Pontianak is somewhere around! Maybe I should just… Oh wait, never mind, I’m starting to feel angry,” I said.

Stepping over broken furniture and shattered glass, I walked up the old wooden stairs. With each step, I could feel myself getting angrier and a little bit afraid since my induced joyousness kept fading away. My ghostly companion kept following me, floating to the side.

As I walked down the corridor of the second floor, I stopped in front of a door and placed a hand on it. I didn’t have to open it to know that there was something mystical happening in the room. There was a distinct lack of magic in the air and it was making me feel much more grounded and less giddy. Well, there was always magic in the air but it was in a nice comfortable level where it was just enough for me to not get withdrawal symptoms from it.

“Hey uh, you, could you go through this door and see if my friends are inside the room?” I asked.

“You’re asking me for help?” asked the ghost.

“Um, yeah. I am,” I said and looked expectantly at her.

“And why should I?” asked the ghost.

“Because you’re not doing anything and I’m going to say please. Please?” I asked.

“Will you let me lick you then?” she asked once more.

“Only if you check inside!” I frowned.

The ghost gave a displeased noise and drifted past me, fading out as she disappeared through the door. I was actually unafraid of her. In fact, I didn’t fear any ghosts, monsters or demons. You just had to be firm with them and not show any sign of indecisiveness, kind of like how you train a pet.

The only thing I feared was if my friends ever got into trouble with any of them. Clearly it would be a very difficult thing to explain to their parents if they got possessed, maimed or insane leaving me the only one unscathed.

I’m saying this because it had happened before and I had to pretend that I was having a fever and speaking in tongues. My mother fixed that particular mess by arguing with the ghost before just smacking them violently away.

And yes, it was from my mother that I got this talent for sucking magic.

Alright, my main talent wasn’t sucking magic. It was a side effect, my main talent if I could actually make it work. It was being able to affect ghosts and demonkind. Kind of like a reverse sort of possession. Whatever they could do to humans, I could do it to them instead. The only thing was that it felt disgusting. Who would want to possess a ghost?

Disgusting people, that’s who!

It had been at least three minutes that I stood outside of the door, waiting for the Hantu Tetek to come out. Cupping my ear against the wooden surface of the door, I tried to listen to what was happening inside. It must have been made of solid oak or a sturdy type of wood as I couldn’t hear a thing.

I was standing there in the dark, alone in the silence. You couldn’t even hear the crickets from where I was. It felt like I was standing in an abyss of nothingness. A nothingness where I could only feel slight traces of magic.

I paused, staring at the door.

The Pontianak was probably behind me. Ok, I wasn’t afraid of ghosts or demons. I was however afraid of Pontianaks. It occurred to me just then that, what was I supposed to do with one? I didn’t actually have iron nails with me nor did I want to possess one. You do not want to possess a Pontianak unless you were highly skilled.

I stood still for a few minutes before I turned around to face her. The Pontianak usually had two faces from what I recalled in stories. The typical beautiful lady in a white dress with long black hair and the freaky corpse decomposing look with fangs and long clawy fingernails.

Guess which face she was showing me.

“Well, hi!” I greeted.

And then I punched her in the face.

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Well, this is seriously Sarah and that's all you need to know for now.

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