This is my entry to our weekly writing prompt! There's still time to enter so make sure join in!
I grabbed the teddy bear lying on the beach chair. A child's friend left behind by a guest that had long since packed up and left for the summer. The few weeks before winter slammed into the coastal region seemed the most depressing for me. I found myself longing for the joyful summer days and the feeling of time being endless.
Soon, I would need to shut down the doors of the inn and prepare for the storms and the threat of floods. Winter seemed dramatic to me. I looked forward to the Christmas holidays when I visited my sister's children who pointed out falling stars as if they were Santa's reindeer streaking across the night sky. The battles would then ensue as to who would be visited by Santa first and like an officer of the court I would deem them both equally as likely as long as they went to bed on time. I chuckled a bit at the memory, but the joy was fleeting.
I turned around and looked behind me. I could have sworn I heard footsteps.A quiet chuckle. I shrugged it off and continued my walk around the deck.
Maybe it was the isolation I feared the most. My summer guests were my adobted summer family, unbeknownst to them. I hadn't always felt this way. Not since Leon left several years ago.
I stopped. There it was. That noise. Laughter again, the joyous type that can only be made by children. Yet, nothing was there. Not a single person around.
The ghosts of memories long past could be the only thing haunting me....
Lauren shuddered and rubbed her arms. "God, what was that?"
"What was what?" Her husband scrubbed the deck with a wet cloth. Cleaning the inn at summer's end was always a diffiult task for the both of them.
"I don't know, I could have sworn I heard someone or felt something. It got cold all of a sudden - kids! Stay inside - a storm's coming!" Lauren called out to her two young children. The sound of her voice only made them pause for a brief moment. Judging by the lack of true warning in her tone, their shrieks continued into the evening air as they continued their game of follow the leader.
"Who did you say owned this place before us?" Lauren asked. They had just purchased the beach side inn last spring awere able to open by the next summer. This past summer had been a hectic one for the family, but Lauren was excited for the new lifestyle.
"Some woman. Died during a storm, ran out into the ocean they said."
"Why would she do something like that?"
"No idea, but they say this place is haunted..." her husband chuckled, a sucker for a ghost story.
"Don't talk like that," Lauren scolded. She looked around the deck area. "I could have sworn I heard someone. I heard footsteps right near me."