In The House

Entry by: Rosey

23rd October 2015
I was born at midnight.

When I was a little girl, my grandmother told me I was a chiming hour child; she was consistently, completely superstitious about these things. Children born at the chiming hour, she claimed, were born with the ability to sense and see the supernatural. She had known a girl at school who'd seen ghosts roaming the graveyard, in the church next door. If I'm being honest, it scared me a bit when she told me - I must have only been seven or eight years old. No matter how hard I've tried since then, I haven't been able to forget that conversation. It's something that sticks with you, and lingers in the back of your mind.

I never saw anything. Once I had grown up, and grown out of my fear, I started to feel disappointed that my supposed powers of ghost-spotting appeared to be non-existent. There was a library down the road from an office I worked in, and so at lunchtimes, I would wander down and borrow books of ghost stories and paranormal activities. The more I read, the more I wanted an experience of my own; my own ghost, my own haunting. I dreamt of friendly spectres, that could talk with me, sit in my room and tell me stories of their past. It wasn't all pleasant - don't get me wrong - nightmares of freakish apparitions also plagued me, waking me in a cold sweat. But nothing and nobody ever appeared to me, and I began to wonder that maybe Nanna was wrong, or I had been born just a minute too late.

My grandmother died the year I had my son, Max. We had stayed close, but I had never told her how much that chiming hour story had stuck with me. I cried at the funeral, the burial, in the house where she'd spent her adult life. During the wake, I needed time alone, so I disappeared upstairs, and sat on the forever-made bed in her room. I held my boy, sleeping in my arms, and closed my eyes. "Nanna," I said quietly. "I miss you."

I felt her lips, warm and smooth, against my forehead. I knew I wouldn't see her if I opened my eyes, and so I kept them shut. I stayed there until Max began to stir in my arms. I kissed his forehead, and walked back downstairs.