After a long morning of practicing picking up and arranging sticks and rocks Joanne had managed to arrange a short and hopefully pleasant message. It wasn’t anything complex. It was just enough to hopefully get someone’s attention.
HELLO. I AM DEAD. PLEASE TALK TO ME.
‘That oughta’ get the conversation going,’ Joanne though. It can not be adequately expressed how wrong she was. She had arranged this message in a busy parking lot downtown and greatly underestimated how easy it is to ignore a bunch of sticks on the ground. Most of the people who walked by didn’t notice anything. Those who did notice dismissed it as some strange prank. No one pieced together what Joanne believed to be the clear and obvious message. That message being, ‘There is a dead woman here, and she wants to talk to you.’ Joanne sighed and began to reevaluate her plan. She needed to be more specific. Being more specific required quite a lot of time, however. So for a few minutes she just kicked the ground and grumbled instead. Once the ground was thoroughly kicked and profanities were well grumbled she got back to work.
She gathered up more sticks and rocks from some bushes near by. She had gotten the hang of lifting things pretty quickly. Once she was used to the idea of just pretending things were normal it seemed to happen pretty easily. This time around she tried to create a message that might get people to stick around a bit longer.
I AM A GHOST. WATCH ME MOVE THIS ROCK. THEN PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD LET ME TALK TO YOU.
Joanne figured the combination of a concise message and a ghost literally moving something in front of someone’s eyes should get her message across. Then she could arrange the sticks into new phrases and have a conversation with someone. She smiled to herself and waited for some new people to wander past.
Once someone finally came to a stop in front of her beautifully crafted message, Joanne got ready. She leaned down and prepared to toss fairly small stone toward a rather confused looking young man. The stranger tilted his head and raised an eyebrow at the message. Joanne waited for the perfect moment and tossed a stone toward the man. It landed with a CLACK at his feet and he let out a terrified yelp. He turned around and ran away as fast as he could out of the parking lot. Joanne tilted her head back and let out an frustrated grunt. She sat next to her message and waited for more people to walk by. Whenever someone did, she picked up another rock and threw it their way. They would look toward her, raise an eyebrow at the message, and move on. Some looked scared. Some looked confused. They all ignored her. Except for one.
Joanne was sitting cross legged on the ground, slouching with her chin resting on her hand. A little girl with short, straight, black wearing a black dress stopped and looked at the now haggard and messy message. She smiled and started to look around. Joanne perked up and reached for the nearest rock she could find. She lightly tossed it toward the girl who watched it with glee. She smiled widely and waved at Joanne.
“Hi ghost,” she said, excitedly, “I’m Molly. It’s nice to meet you.”
Joanne’s jaw dropped and her eyes began to tear up. She smiled at the girl, who stared through her. She couldn’t see her, but at least she believed.
“Hi Molly,” Joanne said between sniffs, “Thank you so much.”