What the F*ck did i just write? And Chapter 53 of The Voice In The Forest

The F*ck?

Soooo…. about last week’s chapter…

I… um… wut

That’s it. That’s all I can say about that.

No, I lied.

I have a lot to say.

Mostly creative swear words, but I’ll just use some of the ones less likely to get me shadow banned via seo. Listen, we all know I did this foolish thing and started working nights at the day job… 0/10 do not recommend.

In the past I have told you all that I am an insomniac. To a massive and wildly bad for me level. It’s something I have struggled with as long as I can remember.

What I have discovered through this mess I thought was a good idea at the time is that my epic levels of insomnia do not actually transfer to successfully working nights.

Nope. Instead, I’m just so tired I apparently forgot how to sentence last week.

Seriously… I know we all agreed that this little story here is a hot mess rough draft but it should still be the language I’m attempting to write it in!


I am sorry, I don’t even know what to say.

Other than, if I had a student turn that in I would have put it on sh*t my students write dot com.

Yes. We teachers, even though we love our students, occasionally are so very baffled by the things they write that we must share them somewhere amongst each other.

If you’re ever in need of a giggle, that website is free.

Some of them are so amazing they remind me of the kid in a budget assignment who said something like, “I spent $38 on asparagus. Help me. I’m not ready to live on my own.”

Listen, I took a job that leaves me so tired I literally can’t read road signs through my blurry, you’re doing fine sweetie.

The Voice In The Forest

Chapter 53

She cried herself to sleep, finally, and all I could do was watch her as the dread pooled in my gut.

This woman… she said she wanted to marry me in the middle of her panic.

Of all the things that held me together that night in the face of the abject misery she was being subjected to, and my complete inability to do anything about it, I clung as tight to the fact that she wanted to marry me with my mind as I did her body with my hands.

But the dawn peeked through the panes of the windows, slicing over the tops of the trees outside and every harsh ugly truth I ran from by hanging onto Ara all night crashed down upon my head at once.

Pain lanced through me, so physical, so heavy, if I didn’t know better I would have sworn that I was as much flesh and blood as she was.

None of that was true, though. No matter how real this pain felt, I was no longer flesh and blood. And as much as I longed to see the body they believed to be mine, if for no other reason than to see if I was ever really as whole as Ara, now the woman in my arms, and her needs rendered that hope almost pointless.

Even after all these days since the discovery, there was some kind of investigation with local historians and archeologists and a bevy of other specialists still in a tent in the yard focused on processing what they said was my body.

I should have been slipping away from Ara. I should have been looking at the body, the casket, everything. I should have been doing all the things I felt through every part of myself that I needed to.

After last night, though, the weight of what she was going through and how much I loved her twin weights pressing upon me as if I had mass while the pressure of Henry’s obvious interest in being her husband made my non-existent stomach twist.

Those realities kept me frozen and attached to Ara’s side last night, but as the sun’s first morning rays grew stronger by the second, I knew I was running out of time.

Out of time to look at my body.

Out of time to keep Ara to myself.

Out of time to help her.

Out of time to love her.

Maybe all of that was as it should be and my own thoughts always screamed at me that it wasn’t fair of me to let her tie herself any further to a ghost.

But… my transparent heart did what I assumed would have meant it was thundering when I was alive and sent acute aches ricocheting through the rest of me.

Ara stirred in my arms as I shuddered around her, her eyes blinking slowly open.

She focused on me and I took in a deep, shaking breath that I didn’t need but still grabbed onto as if it was the only thing keeping me from fleeing.

“You should go back to sleep,” I muttered and kissed her on the forehead.

“No,” she said, but it was a barely there whisper, “Stay. Love you.”

Her voice trailed off at the end and tears clogged up my throat before I maneuvered myself out from underneath her and laid down beside her.

Whatever else I was, I wasn’t someone who was going to leave the woman he loved more than anything in this non life he had ever thought possible.

Even if leaving right at that moment was the smartest course for me, and I just knew it was although I couldn’t even come close to explaining why, she needed me to be here with her through this if I could.

Of all the things I expected to find when her parents moved in and then when she followed, it wasn’t a woman who was worth spending eternity stuck here for.

But that is exactly what I found.

“My Ara,” I whispered, running a hand along her temple, wishing I could do this in a real body and not feel guilt because of it.

Not yet, the unhelpful voice of my deepest fears spoke up while I was with her waiting for the rest of the house if shadows we built around ourselves to fade into nothing.

She wasn’t mine. And unless a miracle happened, the kind I had never even heard of in legends, than she never would be for more than these few, stolen, precious moments. 

For now, though, my head ached worse than it had even an hour ago.

Every minute since they found the body they said was mine, it did this.

At first it was nothing more than a barely perceptible tinge.

Now… now I couldn’t hide it from Ara for much longer.

If she woke up all the way right this minute, she would find me grimacing and squinting away the growing light from the sun.

There was a very real possibility that in the next half hour, as the sun rose further above the trees and flooded the room with more light, it would only grow worse and more pronounced.

Kissing her on the forehead with a sigh, she hummed in her sleep with a smile on her face as I slipped from her.

My arms ached from the absence of her in them, but even from this short distance, she was blurry in front of me.

I had exactly one thing I could think to do to make this better and I prayed to whatever deity made me into a ghost in the first place that this wouldn’t mean the image I was committing to memory of a love that found me even in death would be ripped from me forever as I did this.

Because making me choose between the agony growing in my head or her without knowing for sure was too cruel, even for whatever power put me in this position and made it so I only found love after death in the first place.

At least… I hoped it was.

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