The Fifteen Minute Novel 2022: Day 151

The fifteen minute novel writing experiment is a attempt to write a complete (and very rough) draft of a novel by writing for fifteen minutes each day. I have taken a timed writing from one of the daily prompts done in 2021, cleaned it up a little and used it as my jumping off point into a story. Each day I will take the last line of the story written the day before and use it as my sentence starter and write for fifteen minutes, growing the story as the year progresses.

Day 151: She turned towards the sound of the voice.

 She turned towards the sound of the voice. The voice sent Anya’s heart into her throat.  Her eyes went wide and for a moment she couldn’t breathe.  Eight feet away from her contained in a separate circle of light was a person. 

“I didn’t know anyone else was back here,” Anya said.  Her voice was breathless and she wanted to run, but knew she was held by the light. She wondered if the other person was so contained.

“I suppose that strictly speaking I am not back here,” the person said.  He was an older man, slender, with hair that was white and sparse, age spots showing on his scalp.  “I suppose you mean by back here you are speaking of the hidden spaces inside the mountain?”

Anya nodded.  “Inside the house of the Star,” she said.  The words came out more as a question than a statement.

The figure looked amused.  “Is that who came to reside here? How very interesting.  I suppose it is now called the House of the Star then?”

Anya nodded.  As she studied the older man she realized that while he was substantial, she could halfway see through him to the outlines of the room beyond him.

“Are …are you a ghost?” she asked.

“A ghost…what have your teachers been telling you?” he asked.

“I haven’t really got any teachers,” Anya replied. As the man seemed disinclined to object to her presence and didn’t seem like he was going to attack, Anya felt her heart rate calm down and resume it’s normal beating. 

“Oh,” he replied.  He looked surprised. “How could that be?  Did the Star chase them out?”

“No this is the House of the Star but I appear to be… different from them,” Anya said.  Again it came out more as a question than a statement.

“Of course you are,” he said.  “You are like me, or like I was perhaps. “  He looked down at himself and seemed to realize that he could see the floor through his hands.  He wiggled his fingers as if amused byu the sensation. “Ah yes, I see your ghost question now.”  He looked up at her and smiled.  “I suppose it would seem that way, although I am less a haunting and more of a deliberate placement.  Not that I’ve actually seen a haunting of course.  I never really did believe in ghosts.” He laughed.  “Except now I appear to be one.”

“So if you aren’t a ghost,” Anya said as he continued studying the effect of seeing the world through his body. “What are you?”

He looked back at Anya.  “I am Deran,” he told her.  “I suppose I would be a memory.”

“A memory?” Anya asked.


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