The sun came up, as it always eventually does. In the warm light of a crisp autumn morning ride to school, Jake was able to chalk the night’s incident up to his own back-to-school nerves and imagination. By the ride home that afternoon, he had all but forgotten the strange and frightening visitor from the night before. Until it was once again time for bed.
His drained energy from a full day of school and homework—not to mention his mommy’s hearty cooking followed by a warm bath—had Jake nearly asleep less than one minute after his head hit the pillow. He drifted away to the sound of his parents watching the ten o’clock news on the living room television set. Mickey Mouse reported that it was ten twenty-five. If he stayed awake much longer, he would hear the booming voice of Ed MacMahon introducing Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show. Sometimes he listened to Johnny Carson’s jokes before he drifted off, but tonight he didn’t think he was going to make it that far. The image of the thing from the night before briefly appeared at the fore of his mind, but he managed to push it away with little effort.
“There’s no such thing as ghosts,” he murmured as he drifted down to sleep. “Mommy and daddy said so.”
But that was little comfort when his eyes later fluttered open in the darkness to find the aural lady standing before him again.
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