Welcome to Amazing Words Wednesday, the day we enter the labyrinth of language and see what we can discover. The first Wednesday of each month, I share some of my own words (you know, being a writer and all 😉 ).
This fall, I took an online short story course from the young adult chapter of RWA (Romance Writers of America). During this class and beyond, I wrote, edited, and polished a teen paranormal tale titled Exorcising My Sister. I plan to compile several paranormal shorts and self-publish the stories in 2014.
Today, I’m sharing a teaser (chapter one) from this 9,300-word short story.
Chapter 1: Today’s the Day
I burrow under my fleece purple blanket, not yet ready to face this day. Wednesday the 16th — the only calendar day not marked for my parents and Nickie to visit a physician, psychiatrist, principal, juvie court judge, or some other authority.
All futile attempts to knock my big sister back from raging lunacy to her normal — still annoying — self, the self she was four months ago, before this hell started.
“Okay, okay . . .” I mumble to the alarm clock, the repeated buzz feeling like fists punching my ears. My feet slide through the warm sheets to the cool tile, and my hands rub my eyes to coax them open. A shove to my back tells me Biggun, our oversized tabby cat, is also awake.
He crawls onto my lap and bats at my hands with his nose. I scratch his ears, and Biggun purrs. Since my sister freaked, his affection demands are all on me. He won’t get within ten feet of Nickie.
Apparently, the cat and I are the only ones wise to Nickie’s real problem. It’s not an emotional breakdown, a delinquent phase, or some deep-seated cry for help.
My big sister Nickie is possessed.
With a demon.
I give Biggun a few more pats, then walk to the mirror and stare at my disheveled self. Prickles electrify my scalp and travel down my arms and legs. “Courtney Pater, this is it.”
My voice sounds hard and determined, like a drill sergeant inspiring troops, and my body stiffens. I may be fifteen years old, a nerdy misfit at school, and 110 pounds holding a watermelon, but I’m my family’s only hope.
While my parents explore logical explanations for Nickie’s deviant behavior, I’m doing the truly reasonable thing — the only thing to prevent her from eventually ripping our family to shreds. And with the mischief, violence, and criminal record growing daily, we’re out of time.
“Yep,” I say, “today’s the day to exorcise your sister.”
Ψ Ψ Ψ
Here’s the blurb for the story:
Some teens think their older sibling is possessed. Courtney’s sister actually is. No one else gets the real reason for Nickie’s recent personality change, so it’s up to 15-year-old Courtney to save her big sister and exorcise the demon.
What paranormal creatures or subjects do you like to read about? What short story authors do you enjoy? And have you ever exorcised a demon — like from a family member?