By Paula Bianchi –
“Emma! Justin! I’m home!”
The sound of Michael’s voice shook the house causing Emma to jump up and run to her mirror to clean herself up before her dad could see her like this.
“Hi, Dad.” Emma called out as she opened her bedroom door and walked over to look down at her father from the second-floor. “Justin’s not home yet.”
Lucy stood next to her daughter and looked down at her husband. He looked thinner than she remembered, but he was still the incredibly handsome man she married with his black hair and stunningly blue eyes. She missed their talks together because he always kept her grounded.
“I guess that means it’s just us for dinner again. Is he at practice?” Michael asked.
Lucy could feel Emma’s conflicted feelings whether to tell him what she really knew or to just be vague.
“I guess that’s where he is.” To Lucy’s dismay, Emma chose vague.
“What’s all this?” Michael motioned to the shards of porcelain scattered across the marble floor in the foyer.
Emma quickly descended the stairs to join her dad.
“I don’t know. It wasn’t here, when I came home, but I’ll get the broom and clean it up.” Emma went into the kitchen to collect the broom and dust pan.
When she returned, Emma noticed her dad kind of staring off into space.
“Are you okay, Dad?” She asked.
“I was just remembering my honeymoon with your mother. We bought that figurine while we were in Italy. She always said it was one of her favorites.” Michael reminisced.
Lucy tuned into her husband’s thoughts as he was reliving their honeymoon together, then all of a sudden, those memories faded away and were replaced by the phone ringing, and Michael hearing the words he thought he would never hear. Your wife was in an accident. She didn’t survive, then, Michael’s imagination took over spinning the worst possible scenarios through his head of how she died.
It broke Lucy’s heart to see that. She didn’t want him to replace their wonderful memories with the last moments of her life. That was but an instant compared to a lifetime of memories.
Michael quickly pulled himself out of his grief, and Lucy could sense it was because he wanted to be strong for Emma.
“What sounds good for dinner?” Michael didn’t ask because he was hungry. He just wanted to keep himself busy.
“Make whatever’s the easiest.” Emma answered, as she bent over to sweep up the broken figurine into the dust pan, then, she followed her dad into the kitchen.
Michael headed straight to the refrigerator, while Emma put the broom and dust pan away in the laundry room.
“How about pizzeria casserole?” Michael turned from the frige holding a casserole dish, with a post-it note on top. “Looks like grandma stopped by today.” He smiled a genuine smile spurred by the gratitude he felt for his mom, and his mother-in-law.
“Yes! That’s one of my favorites.” Emma took a seat at the end of the island.
Now, Lucy was linked to her family without even thinking about it. She saw everything that Michael’s mom, and her own mom, had been doing for him since she died, and she was also filled with gratitude. The two moms were constantly bringing food, and making sure everything was clean, so Michael wouldn’t have to worry about taking care of the house or the shopping.
Lucy could also ‘see’ that Michael didn’t want to take advantage of them by getting too dependent on their help, so he was in the process of looking for a good housekeeper.
“Your brother sure has been spending a lot of time at practice these days. Has he played any games yet?” Michael asked, after putting the casserole in the microwave.
Lucy felt Emma’s guard come up again as soon as her dad asked about Justin. She realized that Emma knew everything her brother was doing, but she felt hesitant to tell her father the truth.
“Tell him! Tell him about Justin!” Lucy screamed at her daughter.
But instead of revealing the truth, Emma responded with, “I don’t know,” while her head was screaming, “He got kicked off the team because he’s doing drugs!”
Emma’s choice to not tell her father the truth was rubbing Lucy the wrong way. She had to get the heck out of the kitchen fast to avoid feeling so overwhelmed by her frustration and anger. Why wouldn’t Emma help her brother?
Closing her eyes as tight as she could, Lucy thought about the living room. When she opened her eyes again, that’s exactly where she found herself, but she wasn’t alone.
Ava and Dobson were waiting for her there. Of course, Ben was nowhere to be seen. Lucy made a mental note to ask Ava about him and where he goes.
“Are you okay, Lucy?” Ava asked, while rushing to her side.
“I just had to get out of the kitchen. Emma knows all about Justin, and she won’t tell Michael.” Lucy dropped down onto the couch in defeat.
“I’m so sorry, but you can’t fight free-will.” Ava told her.
“I guess so.” Lucy tucked her short auburn hair behind both ears. “Have either of you ever seen a gray misty cloud that’s about the size of a soccer ball?” She changed the subject.
“I have.” Both Ava and Dobson said in unison.
“How long has it been here?” Lucy was wondering.
“We noticed it right after you died. When it first appeared, it was the size of a golf ball, and it has been growing fast ever since.” Dobson shared.
“I think that thing knocked the figurine off the table. Do you know what it is?” Lucy asked.
“No. We’ve never seen anything like it.” Ava answered, as Dobson nodded his head in agreement.
“Has this thing been in Emma’s room?” Lucy looked at Dobson for the answer because he always hangs out in there, since it was his room once.
“Yep. That’s where I saw it for the first time floating above her bed.” He informed her.
“And I’ve seen it throughout the house.” Ava added. “Each time I’ve seen it, it has grown in size.”
“I also noticed Emma’s new reading material in her room, and I know she’s trying to contact me.” Lucy heard the sound of sorrow in her own voice.
“She wants to believe you still exist. I know how desperate she feels to reach you.” Dobson said. “Emma’s having a really hard time accepting that you’re not with her anymore.”
“I’ve been so focused on Justin having Lori attached to him, when, I should have been watching Emma and Michael too.” Lucy felt foolish. “I now realize how much my whole family has been suffering without me.” Lucy leaned forward to rest her forehead in both of the palms of her hands.
Ava sat down next to Lucy and gave her a motherly hug.
Lucy welcomed this gesture. She could feel her spiritual body being recharged from Ava’s comfort and love.
“I’ve only connected to Emma once since I’ve been gone. How’s she doing in school, Dobson?” Lucy asked.
“She’s not doing good because she missed a lot of school after you died.” Dobson said.
This was very hard to hear. Emma had been so studious her whole life. A straight “A” student with her sights set on college, so she could become a lawyer like her mom. They were extremely close, when, Lucy was alive.
“Would you two come with me to Emma’s room?” Lucy got up from the couch. “Maybe you’ll see something that I missed. I’m hoping we can learn something from all those books in her room.” Lucy finally felt a smile coming to her lips because she was coming up with a plan.
“Of course, dear.” Ava stood up and smoothed out the wrinkles in her white Victorian dress before she joined Lucy in the middle of the room.
“Sure.” Dobson was standing right there with them already, then, they all floated up to Emma’s room.
Lucy was the first to enter, and she was shocked by the sight that greeted her.
Standing in the middle of Emma’s room, was the guy, with greasy hair and clothes, who was talking to Emma on the Ouija board, and he was grinning a nearly toothless grin at Lucy.
“Who the hell are you?!” Lucy screamed at the intruder. “Why are you here?!”
Come back next week to see what happens with this greasy ghost in my next installment of: Lucy in the Afterlife. Thanks for the visit. Hope to see you again soon. Bye for now.
If you’d like to read Lucy’s story from the beginning, click on the 3 lines in the bar above and choose my Lucy in the Afterlife category, then, scroll down to the bottom for the first installment called, The Beginning.
Hope you’re all doing well during our self-isolation. Stay safe and stay sheltered.
A big THANK YOU to all our doctors, nurses, and essential workers out there. We’d all be up a shit creek without you. (Without toilet paper too. Lol.) I pray for you each and every day. Sending light-n-love to you all.