Clair and Rorin

Published on May 2016 | Categories: Types, Creative Writing, Short Stories | Downloads: 36 | Comments: 0 | Views: 153
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Through the hurts and heals of the daily dives, though I strike you before I kiss you, damn you before I bless you, I ask only that in all things you remember me.

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Paul! Lang Paul! Lang

Clair and Rorin

Clair and Rorin (That Thing Called Legacy)

Noise, Noise, Noise! All was loud in the Saddler house that day, and it was a church day, which were supposed to be quiet. The TV was wailing, the coffee maker was hissing, the kids were yammering and the old dead soldier in the second upstairs closet was jumping up and down in steel toed boots, it was just one of those days. Mr. Saddler had called the Witch-Doctor an hour ago, but everyone knew it took a long time to get around down here in the swamps. The family had put this appointment off long enough, grazing over her space in the phone-book with doubtful eyes every time the ruckus started again. Now the Saddlers were not by any means superstitious people, but what was one to do when there was a curmudgeonly old civil war vet causing civil unrest in ones home. As Mr. Saddler often cried out in the midst of red eyed nights “If the man is already dead, what will stomping around help?!” The house was full of nasty stories, but nasty things were supposed to remain in the past. What one crazy yank did with his prisoners of war once upon a dark and stormy night and all the different places he'd hidden the bodies was of no concern to Mr. and Mrs. Saddler, who didn't think much of the civil war and liked to think of themselves as modern. Both of them had Iphones and everything. Until the Medium in question arrived, poor fat Mrs. Saddler would just have to grit and bear her terrible headache, Mr. Saddler would have to bear Mrs. Saddler squeezing his hand blue and the kids, Chuck, Gram and Cindy would have to be patient as they stared on starry-eyed at the front door, waiting to see what a Witch-Doctor looked like.

Paul! Lang

Clair and Rorin

But the doctor did not come in an ambulance, the doctor was not accompanied by the sound of bongo drums, the doctor didn't appear in a puff of smoke, she came in through the back door, which the careless and numb Mr. Saddler had left standing open. Un-mystical as it was, it was still enough to impress the lucky stars out of Chuck, Gram and Cindy, who were willing to be dazzled by anything now that the ghost in the attic had turned out to be invisible and boring. She let the screen door snap shut behind her, and took two prancing steps forward. The doctor had no face paint beyond the makeup that was regular to a teenaged girl, her nose had no bone through its cartilage, she hadn't brought any shrunken heads, but around her neck was a beaded necklace like a rosary, with a plastic skull as its ornament. “I take all payment up front.” She was a tall, slim girl with black hair, a dancing, intoxicated walk and a thick sequoia branch that she used to prop herself up. Not an impending figure, but there was something unsettling, even ghoulish about her confident annunciation, and something strange about the air that encircled her. It was enough to make Mr. Saddler's heart skip a beat. Had he not been so unsettled, he probably would have objected to paying a teenaged necromancer twenty-five good dollars before even witnessing her work, but good help was hard to come by these days, especially good help that was so conveniently located. She introduced herself, taking a rather old fashioned bow and sweeping the carpet with her stick “Clair Savanna, the town Witch-Doctor, very pleased to meet you. And this is my associate, Rorin.” But Rorin was not something that could be seen in the normal sense. He was there, there was no doubting that, he took up space, and he breathed and ate and overslept just like anyone, he just didn't look like anything. There were a couple of awkward moments in there while Mr. Saddler tried to understand exactly what was taking place, and probably a thought or two of introspection when he thought about his overall state and the state of his kingdom, that its King would have to turn the reigns over to soothsayers and mythical

Paul! Lang

Clair and Rorin

beasts. Rorin hated long waits, and Clair beat the edge of her divination staff against the leg of a hardwood chair until the man became irritated and relented to his fate. “Now, show us to the menace.” Clair and Rorin were led up to the bottom of the stairs and directed to climb to the top. The family didn't follow. “Just another one of those Civil-War P.O.Ws? These guys have been making trouble all over town.” The stomping only got louder the closer Clair got to the closet. But it wasn't just stomping, it was noise, and Clair hated noise. Good news for the Saddler family, Rorin was hungry today. “Hey! You! Keep it down in there!” She beat her stick hard against the closet door, but the pounding didn't stop “Alright, we tried being diplomatic.” Clair shrugged “Gotta do what we gotta do.” Rorin's apatite boiled over. Clair barged in just like she always had. She took a step back, and with a wide arm motion that made the ordeal appear that much more ceremonial she threw open the closet door. Rorin gargled with anticipation. In the closet there was, of course, nothing visible to the naked eyes but three walls, two pairs of brown shoes and an old suit on a hanger, but the noise increased catastrophically. “Rorin! Do your stuff!” She pointed her pointing staff into the closet and Rorin went in. There was a rather funny looking, un-see-able struggle, then, quickly, the noise turned to silence. Rorin was done eating. “Good boy, Rorin.” She stroked him with pleasure. He was happy too. A full Rorin was a happy Rorin. “Save your thank-yous.” She said, tiptoeing out the door. “Rorin's gotta eat, that's all, and he likes eating pesky ghosts.” It was true. That best friend of hers, he ate them up with more gusto than Pac-Man. She tweeted her most recent victory and left. This little creature was the best friend a girl could ask for. Back in the early days, Mom had thought so too. The three of them used to play games together in the wide field by the edge of the sidewalk. Then as time went on Mom began to be stuffier, grumpier, a

Paul! Lang

Clair and Rorin

creature of habit and tradition with reminiscence built into her every phrase. Rorin didn't get along well with people like that, with old people, and they didn't like him much either. She had even gone as far as to try and get rid of Rorin, but friendships were not so easily broken, especially by a decrepit old priest with a book full of words he howled over and over again like a broken record. Grandma and Mom fought a little bit, because Grandma was always by her side, always, until-Today was shopping day. Clair would have to stock up on beef jerky and bubble bath and all of her other life necessities. It was a nice day, so Clair decided to walk home. Every block she passed by had a different set of memories. This was a very old town with a collection of very old stories and crimes, so there was a lot for a witch-doctor and her pet ghost-eater to do. Who wanted to think too hard about the past though, Clair was all about the future. Spinning around the corner she caught site of St. Sebastian's Hospital. Here she had performed her first six exorcisms, a set of patients spanning over the last seventy years who hadn't had the chance to sue for malpractice and had decided to make there dissatisfaction known in the next life. It was out of business now, quite desolate, with not even any of the conscious dead to walk its white halls. Clair looked at her feet as she passed the next string of houses and small businesses. Too much reminiscence today. She needed to get home to her house at 88 Ripplestone. The high-school didn't matter much to her. She'd left that behind and wasn't looking back. There was a certain young man there who had once stroked her hand, but high-school was for chumps. The same young man had called her a freak. She double checked herself and made sure that she had deleted him from her Facebook profile. The deed had been done long ago, but she felt the need to make certain of things, to delete all messages and posts, to whitewash her wall. 88 Ripplestone was just ahead, but she followed her feet a little longer while she passed the old remains of the Saint Jude's Middle School building. It all still smelled like smoke to her, but she had long forgotten the crying voices, all of them screaming her name in a broken chorus. Her mother and father

Paul! Lang had always wanted to be cremated together.

Clair and Rorin

In just a little time she made it back to her empty house, where she had once lived with her mother, father and brother, now it was empty, so very empty. It was loud inside once, now it was quiet. The lawn was overgrown like the fingernails of a stagnant hand. The oven was cold and unused. Dishes were piled in muggy, leaning towers. Old photos lay flat with their faces to the tables, all but one picture of Rorin, which Clair had taken last weekend. The head of the house threw herself down on the couch and flicked on the TV. Rorin curled up in his favorite resting place, Grandma's old urn.

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