Welcome to Storytime Quarter Blog Hop July 27th, 2022
January, April, July, and October
Storytime Quarterly Blog Hop was founded by seven authors who meet on the Holly Lisle writing forums in 2015. Celebrate year seven with us, and read all the stories in this month’s hop. The participate list at bottom of my post for your convenience, just click on a link. I am running an experiment on Medium as I outline a prequel novel. Read about that below too. Welcome, enjoy, and leave us comments. We love hearing from you.
About Midlife Ghostwalker Katje Storm
150 Word Serialization on Medium.
Midlife Crisis Trope
Genre: Paranormal Women’s Fiction
I just turned forty, plus I just filed for divorce from my cheating soon-to-be ex-husband, but if that is not bad enough, he murdered me. I didn’t stay dead. Turns out I’m magical, a ghostwalker with a destiny I had no clue about.
Available Now: Episodes 1 through 50 and growing, check the series list below for updates. Recommend you start with episode one and read in order for full effect of story and what is happening in the bigger picture as the outline grows.
Publishing Timeline: Once a week to every other day depending on my daily schedule.
***This is an experiment in short form. I am using short form storytelling to outline beats for prequel novel in a series. Once I finish the short forms I will expand into a a prequel for my Midlife Ghostwalker planned series.
Written by Juneta Key
How long had I strolled this dead garden, touching headstones?
Shamus thought he won. Poisoning me. Forcing the choice to activate my ghostwalker magic— I could choose to stay dead. It wasn’t like I had anyone to teach me how to activate the magic.
How long could I stay in this ghost state before returning to my body? Where were all the other dead people?
All my life I could see ghosts. I thought everyone saw them. If I located the artifact Shamus wanted, I couldn’t take it back with me. The ass! He knew what I was all along. I still didn’t know.
Can ghosts feel goosebumps, because I sure did. I turned.
“Mmmm, a tasty female shade. Wanna play?”
Horror and ridiculousness robbed me of speech. Run or laugh?
Three deformed skeletal bodies stood before me, two with hair, one without, slinging Mardi Gras beads, wearing colorful-raggedy pirates garb, a pirate hat, a cowboy hat, and the third… a leprechaun hat?
Squaring my shoulders, the absurd won out.
“Who are you? Larry, Curly, and Mo?”
The short, bald, roundish nightmare lunged, mouth gaping into a black void that was not empty, widening past human limitations.
I’m not stupid. I ran and tripped. Tall funky-hair and bouffant closed in.
It occurred to me, I’m a ghost.
Fade, fade, fade.
A bony hand clamped onto me.
I kicked. *Snap* Ouch!
I looked up into three yawning, toothless black masses, descending on me.
Ghosts don’t sweat, they vibrate. Between fear and horror, I felt the power.
I screamed. I heard nothing within the black void that had consumed me.
The vibrating eased into my senses, a deep thrum-rhythm, a steady whooshing sound lulling my senses filled every molecule that death had not taken.
I literally felt my hair and toenails start to grow.
I was cold. Then I burned, consumed by the fire, yet the intense heat was part of my soul. I knew that, even if I did not fully understand it.
Cool air brushed a chill across my body. What’s that sound? I could not quite it out. I felt the transition before I realized I was back in my own body.
“Welcome back to the land of the living.”
I groaned. I knew that voice. Shamus Doyle, my soon to be ex-husband.
“You murdered me.”
Shamus’s blonde surfer looks, and dancing brown eyes belied the manipulator and cheater that made up his black heart.
“I did not. I knew you wouldn’t stay dead.”
I sat up. Shamus offered me his hand. I ignored it, standing. “Like that makes a difference. Did you sign the divorce papers?”
“No. I don’t want a divorce.”
“Sign the papers. You MURDERED ME.” Shamus was a lot of things but I had never imagined this betrayal. “You remember what you said right before I died?
He frowned, cocking his head. “I said several things,” I watched him study my face trying to devine the answer, “I’m sorry…”
It was the sharp chill in the air accompanied by a big gush of wind that made us turn.
Something had returned with me.
The ground morphed, twisted, stretched.
The mortal plane shimmered — a backdrop behind us — fog oozed from the ground. A giant skull cave manifested before us with a lone figure inside its gaping mouth.
The figure pointed a bony finger. “We’ve tasted you Ghostwalker. Part of you remains among the dead.”
“What do you want from me?” I was aware of Shamus standing slightly behind me but within my peripheral vision.
He pulled the medallion he wore from under his shirt. While I lay dying he explained he was a necromancer. The medallion was a tool he used to focus his powers.
It wasn’t like I trusted the cheat, he had broken that long ago, but the depth of his deceptions shattered me. I loved him once.
We both needed to survive — then I would kill him.
“You are the Sentinel, Ghostwalker.”
“I’m what?” The ground under my feet vibrated. Shamus didn’t react. Did he feel it? The fog swirled and shifted. A skeletal bird flew from the cave, followed by a cat.
Shamus reached for his medallion.
“Don’t move.” I felt his eyes boring holes in the side of my face. He wasn’t happy, but he stilled.
The cat neared rubbing against my leg solidifying into a pure white form. The raven landed on my shoulder changing to a shimmering iridescent black.
Shamus moved again. The cat hissed at him. He stopped.
“Who are you?”
“We are the Ingress and Egress of Lich. The pedagogue and the pundit will guide you.”
“It means teacher and learned one,” Shamus said.
The fog and cave disappeared, and the mid-morning sun winked on the horizon.
I started walking. Where was the road? The raven flew around me and then headed away — repeating the action.
“Got it. I’m following.” Better to follow the raven than to stand in the middle of a graveyard with my Judas soon-to-be ex-husband.
A calmness settled over me.
Shamus grabbed my arm. The cat hissed, clawing his leg. The raven dive-bombed him. He cursed, letting go. The cat growled.
Shamus was a lot of things, but he wasn’t stupid. He backed off. He didn’t know what we were dealing with either.
“I think I may like having pets.” We continued toward the road, I hoped.
We are not pets, but we do like cuddles and treats.
“Got it.” I checked my back pocket. My debit card was there. “Taxi, store, and home.”
I woke the next morning to a skull-crow man standing over me. Talk about waking nightmares.
I scrambled across the bed like a crab on crack. “Holy Crap and Hells Minions!
The solid two minutes of jolly laughter following my aerobatics defused the scarey a bit, long enough for me to take in my surroundings.
“That’s not funny.”
“Oh, but it was.” This from the white cat.
The crow-man’s face morphed into a semblance of Robert Downey’s Iron Man and Russell Crowe’s Virtuosity VR serial killer. I am not sure that was any better.
“Damn, I need coffee. What time is it?”
“6 a.m. Coffee on the table.”
I lived in a one-room apartment with half-bath sleeping area. The cat jumped on the table as I sat down. “Training Time.”
Unbelievable — Yep, this was my crazy life.
6:20 am I opened the door to Shamus Doyle’s handsome treacherous face. He caught the door before I could shut it.
“Come on, give me a chance to explain.”
“Nothing to explain about murder.”
“I always knew what you were. That you weren’t really dead.” He leaned a shoulder against the inside of the door frame.
“Felt dead to me. How could you?” Edgar, the raven, and Fluffy the cat, flanked me. I had taken to calling them that in my head on our trip home yesterday.
“My family has always known.”
“Who are you really? Is that why you married me?” I had so many questions.
“Its not the only reason.” He puppy dog-eyed me. “I love you, babe.”
I just reacted. I balled my fist and knocked him on his ass, slamming the door.
I watched the police haul Shamus off through my peep-hole after the neighbor called them.
The police knocked. I didn’t answer. He refused to leave.
Just desserts buddy.
He’d be back.
I sat down with a fresh cup of coffee, chocolate pop-tart, blueberry Greek yogurt, ready to laze through my morning.
Edgar and Fluffy, ganged-up on me. “Training.”
“For what? This is nuts.”
“Destiny Sentinel.” Fluffy the white cat locked gazes with me. The room collapsed. My reality disappeared along with my coffee and breakfast.
“Seriously? A warning would be nice, asking even better.”
“You cannot avoid this Ghostwalker.”
“I can try.” Avoidance was my number one skill. It’s why I was forty and my life in tatters. Ten years of marriage that was over six months after the I do’s.
“What’s that dripping sound?”
“Time running out.”
❤💋READ/ALL EPISODES Katje Storm ON Medium 👀💻 Episode 1 thru 50 available. More coming as the story is just getting warmed up.
Midlife Ghostwalker: Katje Storm Episodes 1 thru 10 by Juneta Key <<–YOU ARE HERE!!