Flash #623

storyunrelated:

The ghost rubbed it’s insubstantial
hands. Some serious haunting was about to go down.

After years of listless meandering
throughout the empty home it had been trapped in the ghost finally
had something to look forward to. A brand new family had moved in.
They seemed happy, but credulous. The ghost had been doing some
groundwork in the days following the move. Shifting objects about the
house. Opening doors. Closing doors. The usual stuff, and all
building towards the more fun later activities.

Ghostly whispering! Scrawled warnings
on the walls! Fleeting glimpses of horrifying figures! The ghost
could hardly wait.

“Excuse me,” came a rasping
voice, making the ghost jump, or at least jump as much as an ethereal
being could. Rounding, the ghost found a demon. This was a surprise.
Didn’t see many of them around these days.

“Can I help you?” Asked the
ghost, using the common language of
things-that-like-to-pester-humans.

The demon smiled.

“I take it you have this house
reserved?” It asked.

A leading question. No-one and nothing
would show up at a moment like this to ask a question like this
unless they had an agenda and the only agenda would be them wanting
to muscle in. The ghost was having none of it. It knew what was up.

“Yes! I’ve been waiting years for
this! Check my documents, all in order!”

A plethora of official paperwork was
produced, dripping with outraged ectoplasm. The demon was unmoved and
barely even glanced at any of the proffered sheets. Formalities meant
nothing to them.

“Very impressive, but I think
you’ll find that I have an official Demonic Hassling Claim on the
child of this family.”

The ghost blanched. An impressive feat
for something with no blood.

“No! You can’t! You couldn’t!”
It said. A Demonic Hassling Claim was notoriously high on the
hassling priority list and overrode just about anything else.
Certainly it would take immediate priority over the ghost’s own
haunting reservation, no matter how long it had been waiting on
fulfilling it.

The demon smiled some more. At this
point it was almost entirely mouth.

“I’m afraid I do and I have. See?
All in order.”

More paperwork, only this time slightly
singed and smelling of brimstone. The ghost glanced over it but
couldn’t really stomach it for more than a few moments. The feeling
of its hopes and dreams slipping away made it too ill to read
further.

At this point the innocent family
stumbled into view, happy as anything and entirely unaware of the
many horrors that were in store. The demon split open such was the
wideness of its smile, stepping out of itself in a way that would
have made eyes water, had any physical eyes been watching it at the
time.

“Excuse me, I have demonic
business to attend to,” the demon said, tucking the papers back
into place and stepping off to hassle. The ghost sulked.

“It’s just not fair…”

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