Status: Oneshot, finished
Summary: A ghost lives in the shell of a house. (An assignment from school; write about your favourite space.)
Once, the room rustled with the sound of papers being blown away. A wind chime sang its little tune, and there used to be brisk footsteps outside the corridor as the members of Parliament hurried to an early morning meeting. No longer. Now, it is an empty shell, and the only concession made to its former state as a house are the delicate curtains, forever still because every place in the house has been modified and air-conditioned.
You can still sit on the sill though, and pretend everything’s just fine; everything’s the way it was. It does not matter that outside the window, beyond the rain, things have changed. Old houses, as old as this one, have been torn down or changed, as this one has. That doesn’t matter. What matters is that the shell still remains. If you look hard enough into the space, you’ll realize that the ghosts have never really left.
You know this because somewhere, from the piano room across the hall perhaps, the second movement of the Appassionata still storms the house. You sit there in your little corner of the room, hugging your knees, and wonder if the music is really there. They’re beautiful and enraged notes, just the way you remember it from 1872. Surely they’re real. They sound just as real as the figure you see working at the suddenly corporeal desk. His head is bent down in work, a callused hand moving swiftly across white sheets of typewritten paper. You don’t know him, but there have been many like him in this room through the ages- you know this because you’ve been here since the beginning, a phantom spectre that these gentlemen always sense, but never quite see.
There will never be another like them now, though.
Old memories rush through you, one after the other in a frantic pace and you would have been choked breathless by their sheer volume if you only remembered how to breathe.
It is this that brings you, unwilling, back to two-thousand-and-eight, where horseless carriages dash past just outside the windows daily and where the vast open sky is now clouded by the skyscrapers that seem to propagate every single year.
You look at the room, still from the window sill. It is so silent. Too silent. You may gather your thoughts in a quiet place, but this is a silence that throttles everything. The music from the other room is gone. Downstairs, a couple of visitors laugh at a private joke as their feet sink soundlessly into the plush red carpet of the stairs, but it’s not enough to warm the place.
The air is hot, and heavy. It’s still raining. Angered, you push at the locked windows, rattling at the lock until it gives, and suddenly- a wisp of wind steals into the room, like a breath of life that has not been present in a very long time. Water drips through the opening, and onto the immaculate wooden flooring. You smile and nudge the window open a little wider. Later, a security guard will notice the opened window with a puzzled frown, but really, what does that matter?