Working Never Ends
“Scary?” he laughed, but without mirth, “we've barely started.” Some of the people in the group that followed him giggled nervously. “I hope it isn't too scary,” the young, female voice behind him insisted on pressing the question.
“It’s a haunted house, doofus,” another voice said, likely the girl’s brother. The tour guide smiled to himself and signalled the beginning of the tour. Ghosts appeared suddenly, floating convincingly along the corridor, stuttering at the end, though, as if driven mechanically. Chains clattered, the sound interwoven by moans and sudden growls. The group screamed as a convincing looking werewolf reared up and slammed against a window beside them. They continued to scream and gasp at appropriate times until the end of the tour.
The insistent little voice piped up again. “So not scary!”
“Then you have your answer,” the guide said in a quiet voice. He didn't show it, but he was exhausted.
“You were screaming convincingly enough,” the likely brother laughed.
“Shut up!” there was an elbow in the ribs, but a good natured one.
“Do come again,” the guide waved his hand and the exit door opened.
When the guests had left, he swiftly calculated the day’s income, and then let go of his corporeal form, fading into motes of dust. It took longer than usual for his translucent form to reassert its shape; that of an elderly woman.
“Someone else is going to have to run the tour for a while,” she yelled in a thin voice at the walls. The other ghosts drifted into the room.
“It’s not easy,” one complained.
“Maybe we need another werewolf,” a man walked in through a door, pulling on a shirt as he came.
“You have someone in mind?” the guide said, settling on a chair.
“Of course,” he smiled, looking wolfish despite remaining human.
“It’ll open up some possibilities,” she admitted.
“Possibilities are good for profit,” another ghost said.
“I thought I’d be able to stop working after I died,” the tour guide said. “This working for a haunting is ridiculous.”#FlashFiction
© +Ayoub Khote