The Vessels

Archive for the tag “psychic”

A Whisper (Caren)

It started with a whisper. When I first heard it I thought I was still dreaming. I tossed my legs over the side of my bed. I walked through my home into the kitchen where Dad was humming while flipping pancakes. I shook my head when the whispers began to multiply in my mind. There were so many now and so incoherent; they seemed to be bouncing off the walls of my skull. The innumerable whispers that echoed through my mind caused me to pause in my steps. I shook my head back and forth, trying to shake out the sounds. My heart thudded rapidly. I felt like I was being choked by invisible fingers. I wrapped my hands around my throat and began to gently squeeze.
“Help!” I whispered. The sounds of whispers resonated through my skull. I balled my hands into a fist and banged them against my ears. The whispers multiplied. My heart raced. My stomach did turns. I felt weak. I could not control the sounds in my mind. I was going insane! I squeezed my eyes shut and reached up to my scalp and began furiously scratching, digging at my scalp.
“No,” my voice trembled.
“Caren!” my mother’s voice cried out. I heard her feet pounding on the tile behind me. I could tell she was running toward me, but I continued in my madness. She grabbed my arms and released my clawing hands from my head. She kept a grip on my biceps. I opened my eyes, the whispers had subsided. I looked down into my fingers. Hair was wrapped around each one and blood and skin pooled beneath my nails. My shoulders sagged. Tears threatened to flow freely, but I took a deep breath and forced them back. I already felt pathetic enough. I looked up at my mom. My dad stood beside her. His arms crossed in front of him and a concerned look formed on both of their faces.
“Caren, you don’t have lice,” said mom, confused.
“What’s going on with you this morning?” asked dad as he wrapped his arms around my head and pulled me into his embrace.
“Why don’t you stay home today?” mom suggested, gently.
“You need to wash your hair,” mom said, thoughtfully. “You should use the baby shampoo on those cuts you’ve made.”
My head was sore, I could feel blood pooling out of the scratches in my scalp. I didn’t move, I felt frozen and confused. I felt ashamed as they spoke at me and not really to me. I pulled my biceps free from my mom’s grip. I stepped backwards, eyeing them suspiciously and I turned away from them. Then as soon as their stares of pity and concern were on my back, I darted down the hallway and into the bathroom. When inside the bathroom, with the door shut behind me, I undressed in a hurry, tossing my clothes angrily at the wall. I allowed tears of anger and frustration to sting my eyeballs and flow freely down my cheeks. What was happening to me? I leaned over the bathtub and turned the knob for the hot water until it was all the way on. I let the water run while I sat outside the tub, my back facing a nearby wall, and quietly cried. What was happening to me? Steam began to fill the room and the water continued to run. The white noise allowed me to relax. I stopped crying and closed my eyes, and as I did I saw a blood covered gray hand rise above the water, tinging my clear bath water pink. I let out a loud gasp and my eyes shot open. Fearfully, I looked into the bath. Aside from water, there was nothing ghoulish or even bloody about it. I turned off the hot water, wiped the steam and tears from my face and stepped slowly into the bathtub. What was happening to me? I leaned back into the steamy water, allowing it to cover my whole body and face. I closed my eyes under the water and drowned out the sounds of my surroundings. The water crept into my scratches, burning them, but I did not move. I felt apathy. I was numb, emotionally. After my bath I decided to hide myself from my parents’ stares of pity and confusion by lying in bed,  buried beneath my covers. Then the whispers started up again and I felt my body tremble.  This can’t be happening. Why?
“You will be there,” a thought occurred. “Samhill Cemetery in Ravenstown,” the whisper echoed in my mind.
I shook my head back and forth, trying to shake free the eerie whispers. I plugged my ears and shut my eyes in denial that these voices were real. But even in silence and darkness they made themselves known.
“Go and bring a shovel.” said one clear whisper. “My stone is made of marble and comes to a cross at the top. The name on the marker is: Elizabeth Warren. Free me!” The whisper turned into a voice and the silhouette of a woman formed in my mind’s eye. The invisible hands choked me again and stole my voice. I tried to fight my way out of my blanket but I could not move my body. I was paralyzed.
“Free me!” her ghastly voice repeated and she came into full view: a corpse wearing a tattered and dirty wedding dress. Her eyes were still intact and her blueish skin was only just beginning to recede away from her bones. Her hair was matted by dirt and blood to her disfigured head. “I will have revenge,” she sang, eerily, her dried lips forming a creepy smile at the corners. And then she faded from my view and the whispers all stopped at once. I forced open my eyes and pushed my way out of my blanket. I tumbled to the floor with the blanket twisted around my body. I yanked the blanket off of me and tossed it on to my bed.
What’s happening to me? 

Psychic Link (Caren’s Story:Mortal)

I specifically remember Friday, late September of last year, after school, Christina and I walking home together talking about boys, ghosts, and the paranormal. We had always been interested in the hereafter and had just finished reading a book called Purgatory after several summer sleepovers. At those sleepovers, in our oversized nightgowns, we would take turns reading chapter after chapter of the hair-raising tales of what happens in the next life to souls. Our priest had once given a sermon saying that we ought to not conjure up spirits and talk to the dead, but Christina and I were enamored with the morbid.

And that September afternoon, we had decided that we would go to Mass with our parents on Sunday and then hang out all day. That Sunday night the blood moon would rise and we were told by Paul West, a goth kid from 6th period, that during the blood moon the spirits rise from their graves and will interact with mortals. The idea of meeting a ghost, someone from the great beyond, thrilled Christina and me. After Mass, we spent the afternoon together, talking about our plans.

“Okay,” said Christina, “we’re going to pack a couple sandwiches for us each in our backpacks and maybe some chips or something.”
“Then,” she continued, “we’ll need some flashlights, because it’ll be creepy dark. And we’ll bring both of our phones, you know, just in case.”
I nodded and said, “Yes, just in case, but we’re tough; we won’t be scared anyway.”
“Thankfully, St. Mark’s is a quick, two blocks away and I told Mom we’re just going to the hill to get good pics,” she said, waving her phone around, convincingly.
“Why not just tell her we want to go prowl around St. Mark’s cemetery?” I asked.
“Mom would say that’s morbid,” she explained, “and she’d be kinda right but talking to ghosts seems too wicked to not try!”
I shrugged. “I guess so,” I said. And it kind of did sound like it could be fun. We had not spent any time in the graveyard and had only seen it from the back room of the church. Even if we did not get to interact with spirits, we’d at least see who all lied at rest there. I did know that Mrs. Cassidy, an old widow who used to play our church organ, was buried back there. But I did not know who else was buried there so: what the hay?
Christina and I hung out. We even flipped on the local 5 o’clock news and the anchorman was discussing the blood moon and irrational behaviors associated with it. He chuckled and talked about werewolves and then the weather came on.
“See, Mom?” said Christina, “Isn’t that moon lovely?”
“You can go get your pictures after dinner,”  said Christina’s mother, Gail.
“I know,” said Christina, “I just wanted to remind you.”
“Christina, come get me after dinner,” I said. “I need to go back home for dinner myself.” With that, I scooped up my backpack and walked out of their front door.
Later, Christina gave me a call and told me it was time to head back over. She was excitedly rushing around, grabbing her “ghost hunting equipment.” As we walked out the front door to go on our short journey to the graveyard, Christina notified her mother and we were off.
We walked down our street and up another, chatting about ghosts and the great beyond. The night air was cool and there was a slight breeze and it caressed my cheeks and blew softly through my medium-length, reddish-brown hair. Finally, we made it to St. Mark’s and stopped dead at the parking lot, seeing the entrance to the cemetery and a few small graves from our position. The blood moon in the background of the cemetery gave it an evil glow and sent a shiver up my spine. I felt goose pimples form along my arms and I shuddered.
Maybe the rumors about the ghosts coming to life for one night were true. Maybe the idea of talking to them had been romanticized by my favorite  teen movies. I felt slightly fearful of the prospect of meeting with the deceased, so I stopped and shuffled my feet around nervously in the parking lot. I noticed that Christina may have been feeling the same thing because she slowed down in her tracks, as well, and began anxiously twisting her black hair around her index finger.
“You nervous, Care?” she chuckled. Her voice cracked a bit and she stared at her feet.
“Nah, not nervous,” I said, now staring at my own feet. I kicked at the air and moved forward. Each step felt like my shoes were caught in molasses. My heart thudded in my chest  and my hairs stood on end. I felt my stomach do flip flops and I wanted to turn on my heels and leave. We approached the chain link fence that enclosed the entire graveyard. I  told Christina that we should go home. I reminded her of a sermon we once heard about not interfering with the dead or practicing any kind of incantations to get their attention. I remembered that our priest had said that communicating with the dearly departed was akin to allowing oneself to be deceived by a host of demons. She argued that we had gone “this far,” which was only two blocks away, so why didn’t we just think about all this beforehand.
“Plus,” I remember her saying, “I didn’t even bring a Ouija board or nothing.”
After a minute of back and forth, I hoisted her over the fence and she let me through.  And after that moment, everything seemed to go so quickly. At some point I remember her telling me a gruesome story about a family of five that had been shot to death over jewels. The next thing you know I had clean fainted on the floor after hearing creepy noises. I suppose I am easily startled and then, while unconscious, I had a dream. I was surrounded at first in a hot white light. I saw the silhouette of a young girl approaching me and I began to back up. I turned on my heels and ran, but there was nowhere to go. In every direction I went I could see her. I could hear her voice penetrating my mind, her creepy, echo-ey voice belting out a ghastly song of sorts. My heart rose into my throat, I felt paralyzed with fear. My legs were trembling and sweat careened down my forehead, dripping into my eyes and stinging them. I gained some control over my weakened legs and ran into every direction of this lowing whitewashed nothingness I was trapped in.  I could not get away from the ghastly girl. Another eerie voice entered my mind. The raspy voice sounded gravelly but also had a similar echo to the girl’s. I looked everywhere and could not see him so I kept running until my legs started to throb.
“Help me, please!” a loud whisper is all that escaped my throat. It felt closed.
“I am going to die,” I realized, sobbing on my knees. “I am going to die and never see my family again!” I screamed, pounding my fist against the hot, white nothingness.
“Death does that, dear!” another new, gentler voice entered my mind. This voice of an older woman, she spoke with subtle cracking sounds instead of an echo. It was like her voice was coming from an old radio.
“I can’t be dead!” I protested as loudly as I could in that raspy and strained whisper. Tears now flooded my cheeks.
“You are and you are not,” said the old woman. She revealed herself to me. A haggish looking corpse appeared in front of me, animated by something inside of it. As soon as I saw her grayed, receding, and worm-eaten flesh that revealed bone and cartilage, my stomach did a turn and I vomited on her maggot eaten shoe.  Her head, which hardly had any skin to cover the exposed skull, had only a few strands of overgrown gray and crisped hair. Her eyeballs sagged down over her skinless cheek bone and hanged by only a thread of muscle and nerve tissue.  I could not vomit anymore and my trembling, throbbing legs could not carry on to run. So I sat there, panicking and praying that I could wake up soon.
“You will go back to your life because I have marked you,” she said, explaining the situation to me as if it were pure common sense, “but unlike the others, I have marked you on your soul and in your mind.”
Even as she spoke, tears continued to burn behind my lids and a lump formed in my throat. I had no idea what she was talking about and all I could think is the whiteness and burning sensation in this nothingness was my own personal hell, and because I dared to visit a grave with poor intentions, God was punishing me now.
I whimpered and laid my head into my knees to avoid looking at this monster standing in front of me.
“Why?!” I sobbed, shaking violently now.
“You will work for us,” she continued. “You will have a psychic link that connects you to our world at all times. Because of this mark, you are now one of us, but you get to maintain your youth and beauty. You will be able to go unnoticed because you will be alive, but in a psychic and spiritual way, you will belong to the dead. You will hear us at all hours and people will probably think you are mad. And after tonight you will think you are mad, insane, out of your wits. But we will still use you for our purpose. You will travel, find graves and free us from our prisons. And your mark will guarantee this for us. We are coming. But we will all know you are now ours and will be ours in death so you will face no harm from us, unlike the other humans. So give thanks for this and be grateful!” Her crackling, yet warm voice turned sinister. And she faded away without another word.
“Caren!” I heard a familiar voice screaming at me. I shook my head back and forth, trying to gain control over my senses.
“Should we call 9-1-1?!” Christina was leaning over me and shaking my body.
She came into focus as I rubbed my eyes. Confusion set in but I could see Christina’s cheeks had been tear stained.
“I passed out?!”  I asked, upset at Christina for making me come here, but also relieved that I had been dreaming. “We have to go, Christina. This place is creepy!” and so we dashed out of the graveyard and walked the two blocks back home, in complete silence. She called out a friendly goodbye to me when she ran, exhausted, back into her own home.  I did not turn back to say goodbye or even nod. I was stressed out from being passed out on the dirty floor of the graveyard and felt justified in ignoring my best friend for that night. I went in, tossed my backpack on a coat rack, and walked through the living room where my parents were watching the news. I walked through the hallway and into my bedroom.
I sat on my bed and pulled out my diary:
Dear Diary,
I went to a cemetery and died. They are coming.

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