Friday Fictioneers: Talk Parties

PHOTO PROMPT © Fatima Fakier Deria

“She’s doing it again,” he said.

I went to the kitchen window to see. Katie had taken over Gran’s old patio set for her ‘talk parties’, as she called them. She’d snatch fruit from the fridge drawer, and put out cups and plates. “Who’s she talking to, you think?”

He folded his arms over his chest. “Gran, I suppose. I know she misses her. But sometimes she says other names. Does the name ‘Annamarie’ mean anything to you?”

I felt myself go pale. “I think it’s time we talk to someone,” I said.

“A counselor?”

“No, a psychic.”

98 words. This has been an edition of Friday Fictioneers, hosted by the gracious and talented Rochelle. This week’s photo copyright Fatima Fakier Deria. To read more stories inspired by the prompt, or to submit your own, click here.

54 Comments

  1. Great first line, Great last line

  2. Dear Karen,

    You started out with light and fluffy and took me to dark and chilling. Reminiscent of some Twilight Zones I recall. Very well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    1. Now you have me humming the Twilight Zone music. Thanks for reading.

  3. Good flash.
    Annamarie, huh?

    Randy

    1. Thanks Randy. Thanks for reading.

  4. Intriguing piece. I have seen my grandmother from time to time, especially in dreams. She usually has to remind me she’s dead. Well done.

    1. Spooky! Thanks for reading.

  5. That took a bit of a spooky turn! Excellent.

    Click to read my 99 words!

  6. Yep, time to get some advice certainly, there are some things parents aren’t qualified to help with!

    1. It seems so! Thanks for reading and commenting Iain!

  7. King Saul tried that and actually got the Prophet Samuel’s spirit back from the dead. It didn’t end well.

    1. Ha, well hope they don’t go there. Thanks for reading and commenting James.

  8. You tell that story very well, moving smoothly and inexorably from the intriguing first line to the creepy last line. Super skill!

    1. Aw Penny, thank you for your most kind words. Glad you liked it!

  9. peterkirsch

    “I felt myself go pale.” Love it.
    Cold shivers on this one. Something about the undead targeting children–Poltergeist, Amityville Horror–it has always chilled me to the bone.

    1. You have me feeling a little uneasy. Hope it doesn’t wind up like any of them! Thanks for reading.

  10. Hmm, now I’m curious on who Annamarie is. Or I guess I should say, ‘who Annamarie was’.

    1. Yes indeed, who she was…Thanks so much for reading Trent!

  11. There’s something extra creepy about ghosts when only children can see/feel them. Well done.

    1. Thanks Sandra, glad you liked it!

  12. Awesome. A great zinger at the end. I was going for the spirit angle at first and changed my mind. I’m glad you went with it.

    1. I like the way you took your story! Still laughing (and crying).

      1. I have the same mixed emotions. Ironically, my wordpress posts automatically get posted on my Facebook account!

  13. Dale

    Oohh! I love it. There are things that we regular mortals cannot explain. Definitely time to bring in extra help…

    1. Thanks Dale, yes I think it’s professional help. 🙂

      1. Dale

        Oh yes! 😀

  14. That’s strange but it’s not unlikely in my opinion. I moved house when my daughter was four and as we were unpacking she pointed to a picture of my great-grandmother and said “That’s my sister.” Your story reminded me of that inexplicable moment.

    1. Oh wow! That is very cool. My son wants did something very similar. There are more things in heaven and earth…

      Thanks for reading!

  15. Great piece. The last line was really good.

  16. Ooh, lovely story. I like the way you launch us straight into the action – a gret story teller’s technique. I want to know who Annamarie is now! Nicely done Karen

    1. Aw, thanks so much for your kind words!

      1. My pleasure Karen

  17. A good story that suddenly turned at the last second turning it into a cliff hanger with many unanswered questions. Now I want to know why she turned pale at the mention of Annemarie’s name.

  18. Yeek! The whole family’s come back for tea with Katie 🙂

    1. It seems they did! Thanks for reading 🙂

  19. Katie sounds like maybe SHE’S the psychic 🙂

    1. It does seem so! Thanks so much for reading.

  20. Reading the comments made me think of the movie “The Sixth Sense.” Well done, Karen.

    1. That is sort of like I imagined it for her. Thanks for reading and commenting Russell 🙂

  21. I love the concept of a talk party and hope she is not crazy. Then again, what is crazy? Maybe thinking she is talking to those gone is how is how she copes. Beautiful.

    1. What IS crazy–that is a great question. Your comment made me smile. Thanks for reading!

  22. I find the reaction to the name even more intriguing than the rest… who is she, and what secrets are there… ghosts always have a purpose.

    1. It seems like she might be after something for sure. Thanks for reading and commenting Bjorn.

  23. The title of your piece says so much. It sounds as if she must have these “gatherings” often and it is indeed time to get a little help in discovering what is going on, especially since the unseen, invited guest is familiar.

    1. Yes, it would be unsettling. Thanks for reading!

  24. Spooky. I wonder what skeletons they’re hiding in their cupboards.

    1. I like the way you put that. Thanks for reading!

  25. It’s those empty chairs, who’s is sitting there. I love a good ghost story.

    1. Thanks James. I love a ghost story too!

  26. An intriguing spooky tale. I loved it! =)

  27. Any mother would go pale.
    I could actually feel myself doing it. Good simple write!

  28. Great story – really liked using the perspective of Him & Her, observing the scene in the garden. Creepy ending, done with finesse.

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