The Gatekeepers

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Summary

When Keisha passes the only huge house left in the neighborhood, she can hear it calling to her. She finds out who she really is when she knocks on the door.

Genre:
Scifi
Author:
CD Pulley
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
1
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
13+

Chapter 1

I passed the tall apartment buildings, liquor stores, and affordable houses and stopped at Witch Castle; the only wide, Victorian house in a neighborhood that was once filled with houses just like it.

I stood at the wrought-iron railing, staring at the wrap-around porch. The iron fence surrounding the house was laying flat from what looked like years of neglect. The brick house appeared black even in the twilight from the ivy crawling up the walls and windows. I stared at the oasis of brown grass, weeds, and trees that tried to hide the stone walkway. The semi-long staircase gave the illusion the house was on a hill and looming over the neighborhood.

I had no idea what I was going to say to the person behind the door or how I knew there was a person on the other side. A black woman with deep brown eyes, a huge afro, and the clearest skin I had ever seen, opened the door before my raised hand could knock. As I crossed the threshold, a bombardment of voices started shouting in my head. I doubled over, covering my ears as if that would stop the noise. The woman yelled, “Focus on one voice and push it away!”

I writhed on the floor, trying to isolate a voice. I could not focus on one. They were all so loud. I concentrated and found one voice in the cacophony and pushed. I got them all out.

“What the hell was that and who the hell are you?” I asked as she helped me up off the floor.

“I’m Candace DuChant and you can speak to ghosts,” Candace answered.

I burst out laughing and told her, “My grandmother would say that’s white people shit. So you’re telling me I’m psychic?”

She sucked her teeth, “No, psychics are bullshit. We’re Gatekeepers. You can speak to ghosts and help keep peace between the spirit and the living world.”

I was going to say something sarcastic, but I looked around and ghosts were floating towards us. One was screeching, arms outstretched, face contorted, moving fast. Candace yelled, “Down!”

I ducked, and she pulled a gun from nowhere and shot the ghost into smoke. I rose from my crouching position, eyes wide. She said,

“Witch Castle is a way station, Keisha. Ghosts don’t just appear on earth. They are tied to earth because of unfinished business, but their death is confusing. A way station helps ghosts become conscious.”

“But what am I doing here? How do you know my name? And are all the ghosts like her?” I said, pointing at the wisps of smoke.

“The way station called you, they told me your name, and no. They are not all like her. Some ghosts are more confused than others.”

Candace was right. The way station did call me. It knew something was coming. I tried to pretend I never met her, but ghosts and that house filled my dreams. When I accepted who I was, Candace began training me in combat, taught me how to research ghosts and spectrals, and how to live on little sleep.

The spectrals arrived almost a year after I graduated high school. Spectrals are ghosts who never got over their death. Their denial of their demise makes them angry, bitter, and full of hatred. Their only want is souls. They believe souls will make them human again.

Candace and I did not do this alone. The way station called other Gatekeepers. We were thankful it did. There were thousands of spectrals that entered our way station. When we finished fighting them back to hell where they belong, other way stations started calling us. We still have work to do.

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