Welcome to Friday Fiction, my weekly fiction post and link-up. Thanks to all those who dropped by last week to read and add their own work. It’s great to have the company here at Nikki Young Writes!
The link is open for adding your posts (see the blue frog link at the bottom). You can also grab my Friday Fiction badge so that others can find this page.
Please note, there will be no Friday Fiction next week.
My extract this week comes from the novel I am working on and it ties in with the prompt ‘Presence’ from Sara at mumturnedmom. Jake is a fourteen year old boy who can talk to his dead grandmother and this puts him in the position of being a link between the living and the dead. The grandmother is tasked with finding out why the ghost of a dead sixteen year old girl (Aimee) is trying to contact her with concerns about her younger sister (Sophie) and she needs Jake to help her. Jake was reluctant to help because he doesn’t want to get in to trouble, but meeting Sophie changes things:
Lee, she was at the party with Lee. I knew he was in to her. What bothers me more is that we were messaging last night and she never mentioned going to a party and with him of all people. Why would she, though? It’s not as if she has to answer to me or anything. I’m not her boyfriend.
I don’t know why that thought makes me feel a bit sick in the stomach, but as I leave Ollie’s house, I wonder whether to go home. I can’t get my head around Sophie even agreeing to meet me today, if she’s going out with Lee. I mean what is the point and what is she thinking? He seems like the jealous type who won’t like her seeing anyone else, even if it’s innocent.
Going home isn’t a great option either. I’m still cross with mum and dad after the argument we had about France yesterday and I’m worried they think I’m getting sick again because of everything that’s been going on. I can feel them watching me all the time, analysing my every move and waiting for me to slip up. When I reach the high street, I get to a point in the road where it’s decision time: turn right to go home, or left to the beach to meet Sophie, if she bothers to turn up that is. I’m just about to turn right when I get a text. I stop; reach in to my back pocket to pull out my phone. It’s from her:
Looking forward to meeting. See you soon. S X
I’m confused. She’s looking forward to seeing me after spending last night with Lee. It seems like a joke and I don’t know how long I stand there staring at my phone as if an answer will appear. I look up when I feel a presence beside me.
‘What are you doing here,’ I say.
‘You seemed a bit confused, I thought I could help,’ she says.
‘I’m fine, I don’t need any help,’ I say.
Gran sighs and I can tell by her expression that she doesn’t believe a word of what I said.
‘Look, Jake, I can tell you’ve taken a bit of a shine to Sophie…’
‘A bit of a shine?’ I am so embarrassed right now; I don’t know what to do.
‘It’s ok we don’t have to talk about it. It’s just that, you need to put those feelings to one side. You’re doing this for Aimee because she thinks Sophie could be in some kind of danger. Whatever feelings you have for her, it doesn’t matter. You can’t let it cloud your judgement. Go and meet Sophie and try to find out if she is ok, I’m begging you. Please don’t turn away and go home.’
‘Argh, why did you have to show up again?’ I say, kicking the bottom of the lamp post I’m standing next to. As soon as the pain shoots through my foot, I regret it. Jumping around, I try not to swear.
‘I’m like your subconscious reasoning with you,’ she says, grinning at me.
‘This is not funny,’ I say and watch as her smile drops.
‘I know it’s not. I forget what it was like to be young and in love…’
‘Gran, I’m not in love, stop it.’
‘Sorry, wrong choice of words,’ she says, but I’m not convinced she means that. I feel that she is laughing at me.
‘I get it, you want me to go and meet Sophie and pretend that I don’t know she already has a boyfriend and isn’t interested in me,’ I say.
I shoot an apologetic look at an old man walking by and he looks at me as though I have lost the plot. Sighing, I lean back against the wall, kicking at the dirt on the floor. This isn’t just about Aimee and Sophie and I realise that I can’t go home and forget about ever meeting her, even though that’s what I’d like to do right now. Despite what my pride is telling me, I can’t let Gran down. Then there’s my dad’s job and the possibility he could go to prison, my parents running away to France.
The tension is building up inside of me and I feel like a loaded gun in the wrong hands. I don’t know if I will be able to hold it all in for much longer. So much has changed in the last few days. The life I’ve worked hard to rebuild is unravelling before my eyes. If circumstances were different, there would be no way I’d put myself through this. It’s clear that the key to everything is solving the murder of Aimee Land. Then perhaps life can return to normal.
I make my decision and turn left towards the beach.
HERE IS THE LINK FOR ADDING YOUR OWN FICTION POSTS. I LOOK FORWARD TO READING THEM.
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