Shivers In The Night

Shivers In The Night

A Story by LilMissWriter17

I started writing this near Halloween, then I saved it and never finished it haha! It's only a small could be continued if I wanted. It's also written in third person. ENJOY!

Shivers in the Night

Mary-Claire was only twelve when she first saw a ghost. She was never encouraged to believe in ghosts or spirits by her family, but she knew that somewhere deep inside her mind or heart, that she did in fact, believe in something of the afterlife. 

It had taken a few surrounding events to persuade Mary-Claire within herself that yes, ghosts did exist. The first happening, was when Mary-Claire had been woken up in the middle of night, by an earthly draft suffocating the room. She had no reference to where it was coming from; the windows were shut and the long baby pink curtains covered them. She was wrapped in her bed, with not only a duvet but also a blanket and she had plenty of stuffed animal toys that surrounded her to keep her warm too. Mary-Claire was ultimately curious; she pushed herself up from where she had been laying and searched the darkness of her room with her bright, illuminating emerald green eyes.

She couldn’t see anything, only the slight figures of her desk and bookcase on the other side of the room. There was nothing outstanding or abnormal that she should have been worried or frightened about. With a small sigh, Mary-Claire retreated back to her laying position and closed her eyes before drifting off to sleep.

As she dreamed of rainbows, ponies and unicorns, a voice, a small but significant voice, whispered her name. ‘Mary-Claire…..believe Mary-Claire….we will not hurt you if you believe….’ 
Mary-Claire was not awakened by this voice; she slept simultaneously through the night without any interruption. 

When she awoke, she had no reminiscence of the voice within her sleeping dreams. It was a bright morning, on October 1st. The weather was overcast, but the sun was still trying to push its way out. Mary-Claire had got ready for school, without any objection. She sat down for breakfast at her parent’s distinctive wooden dinning table, and waited for the rest of her family to join the table. Her older sister, Janey, sat beside her. She was an ignorant though mischievous fourteen year old, who classed Mary-Claire as her ‘stupid childish little sister’. Though this hadn’t been the only insult that Janey had spoke, Mary-Claire still continued to try to win over her sister for many reasons besides that sometimes, she really did need Janey.

When Mary-Claire and Janey had finished their pancakes, they were sent on the bus to school. Mary-Claire hadn’t thought about last night at all through the day, and when she and her sister returned from school, Mary-Claire’s sweet and innocent smile was still plastered kindly on her face. 
Janey had stormed straight up to her room, slamming the door. Meanwhile, Mary-Claire had questioned her mother on how her day had been, before making her way up to her own bedroom.

Mary-Claire and Janey’s father worked all day and most of the night at the train station. He’d been driving trains since he was able to drive, and though it was a long day, everyday, with only a couple of days off a week, the money that it brought to the family was worth it.

Mary-Claire’s mother though, did not work. She was a housewife; she cooked and cleaned, making sure that her family had a sparkling clean house to come home to, with dinner on the table. She enjoyed being a housewife, though sometimes she did have thoughts about what she could have done with her career, Julianne had wanted to be a doctor.

Mary-Claire hadn’t any idea of her mothers unhappiness, she never really showed it, and Mary-Claire wasn’t old enough to spot the more unclear signs. Her mother wasn’t depressed, but she wasn’t the happiest person in the world either, but she was always, always proud of her family, no matter what happened.

‘So how was school Marie?’ Her mother asked, using the nickname she’d had used since Mary-Claire was three.
‘Fine…’ Mary-Claire answered, grinning. ‘We did algebra in Maths today…’ 
‘Ooooh. Really?’  Her mother answered, trying to sound interested. ‘How did you find it? You can always ask for help if you don’t understand something, you know that right?’
‘Yeah.’ Mary-Claire answered, still smiling. ‘It was okay, Esme helped me…’ 
Julianne frowned; Mary-Claire had many lovely friends, though she wasn’t always keen on Esme.
‘I thought you didn’t like her anymore.’
Mary-Claire shrugged vaguely, ‘She’s okay.’
‘Mmmhmm.’ Julianne watched her daughter as she drank her juice at the table, ‘You must tell me if she starts being nasty or anything again. Girls can be really mean.’
‘She was fine today. She helped me with maths, and I sat with her at lunch.’
‘Yeah, but just be careful, she might start being nasty again.’
‘If she does, I’ll walk away.’
Julianne said nothing to that, she just nodded with agreement. She was proud of her daughter; she was very brave, intelligent and caring. Even someone like Esme, Mary-Claire would still make an effort.

This was what she was afraid of; Mary-Claire was sometimes too nice, and that meant her becoming a doormat, which she did not want to happen. Sometimes she wished that Janey and Mary-Claire swapped parts of their personality, because then they’d be nearest to perfect.

Mary-Claire continued to chat casually with her mother; they’d always had a very good relationship. Julianne sent her daughter up to do her homework, and then began to start cooking dinner. Mary-Claire had even offered to help, but Julianne had insisted that she had to do homework first.

Mary-Claire reluctantly climbed the stairs, freezing when she had reached the landing. Janey was in her room, her music loud but Mary-Claire could hear the faint voice of her sister, chatting.
She frowned to herself, since when does Janey talk to herself? She stepped closer to the door and listened more carefully. 

‘Yeah. Oh I’ll be able to sneak out. My parents are so oblivious.’ Janey was saying. Mary-Claire stepped a little closer, the side of her head pressed up against the door.

‘I’ll see you at seven. Bring booze! Bye.’ Janey said, and then her footsteps came running towards Mary-Claire with no warning. Janey opened the door, Mary-Claire had jumped back but it wasn’t soon enough for Janey not to notice. She frowned for a second, and then came right out of her room and onto the landing, Mary-Claire began walking backwards. Her eyes were madly wide and her steps were robotic. ‘Mary-Claire…were you listening to my conversation?’ Janey asked.
‘No. No, I wasn’t.’ Mary-Claire answered, ‘I was just waiting-’
‘You were listening, weren’t you!’ Janey exclaimed with horror, ‘Don’t lie Mary.’  Janey had grabbed Mary-Claire’s left ear, and began pulling it tightly, ‘Tell me the truth Mary-Bear!’ 
‘My name is Mary-Claire!’ Mary-Claire squirmed, but her sister still held tightly.
‘Tell me the truth!’ Janey squeezed her sister’s ear harder. ‘No! No, I won’t!’ Mary-Claire screamed, ‘Let go of me!’ She cried.

Janey and Mary-Claire yelled at each other in exasperation. Downstairs, their mother Julianne was cooking dinner. She had no time to sort out her children’s misbehaviour, though she felt guilty, she knew that this hadn’t been the worst, and that they were old enough to sort it out for themselves.
Julianne wouldn’t mention it at dinner, or to her husband; it would only cause more stress.

‘Tell me now!’ Janey hissed, ’Tell me now or I’ll….I’ll….’
‘You’ll what Janey?’ Mary-Claire spat, ‘You’ll tell mother?’ She challenge, raising one sceptical eyebrow.
‘I would.’ 
‘No you wouldn’t.’ Mary-Claire pulled herself free.
‘I won’t tell her, if you don’t tell her anything about what you heard. Deal?’
Mary-Claire narrowed her eyes, she may only be twelve, but she wasn’t stupid. ‘You have nothing to tell mother, I did nothing wrong!’
‘THAT ISN’T THE POINT!’ Janey screamed, and then grabbed hold of her sister’s shoulders, ‘You listen here missy. You shall not ever tell mother anything, you hear me?’ 
‘Why? I haven’t got anything to loose.’ Mary-Claire looked up to her sister; she wasn’t frightened of her, though she was quite a lot taller.
‘Because otherwise little miss innocent…’ Janey flicked her sister’s chin softly, ‘You’ll regret it.’ 
Janey walked away, standing in the door way of her room. ‘And by the way?’
‘What now?’ 
‘Stop with the eavesdropping, it really is very rude.’ Janey said, and then slammed the door into Mary-Claire’s face.

Mary-Claire stared at the door for a few minutes, she frowned, her eyes sad and her smile had disappeared completely. She stomped into her own room, and slammed her door too, as a way to let out some of her anger. Janey really did infuriate Mary-Claire sometimes, and she didn’t know when it was going to stop.

As Mary-Claire turned around, she caught a whiff of something strange, a familiar but extraordinary smell. She hadn’t smelt it….since….since….oh! Mary-Claire gasped, realising that it wasn’t since her Grandmother died…

It was her Grandmothers perfume. 

Mary-Claire smiled, breathing in the scent but then suddenly, the window flew open and new air was let in. Mary-Claire rushed to close it, and surprisingly, the scent was still there. Her smile had disappeared, a shiver slid down her spine. 

Mary-Claire was scared; she walked backwards out of her room, her expression still frozen with shock. ‘Janey…’ Mary-Claire whispered into the door, ‘Janey, can you come out please?’ Her voice was small, and almost whiny.
‘What is it now Marybear!’ Janey opened her door, her hands on her hips, looking down at her sister.
‘Just do I a favour?’ She asked.
‘Ugh. What is it? I’m not doing your maths homework again. You really should tell someone if you’re struggling.’
‘I-It’s not that…I-It’s….’ Mary-Claire trailed off, her head gesturing towards her room and well as her pointing fingers.
‘Alright, what is it?’ Janey followed her sister into her room.
‘Do you smell something? Do you smell something familiar?’ 
‘No.’ Janey sniffed, ‘No I don’t. Why? What do you smell?’
‘Grandma’s perfume.’ Mary-Claire shivered, and for the second time, her window had flown open again.
‘Mary! You really should keep your window shut now. It’s cold!’ Janey exclaimed, shivering, but not for the same reason as her sister. ‘Was that it?’
‘Y-Yeah. You can go now.’
‘God.’ Janey huffed as she disappeared again.

Mary-Claire sat on the edge of her bed, the window was closed and she was wearing a jumper, but she was still shivering. Her eyes narrowed, and in that moment she saw, a shadow of a woman. She was beautiful, not young but still beautiful. ‘Grandma?’ Mary-Claire squeaked, being careful not to scare the silhouette away. ’Grandma?’ She repeated, her feet touching the floor but she still sat firmly on her bed. Finally, she stood and squinted her eyes to try see the woman more closely.

 ‘Don’t be afraid young one…’ The voice spoke. With surprise, Mary-Claire gasped. She turned around to see the woman again, she was half inside her room and half outside of it. She was floating in the middle of the wall, her white transparent hand, urged towards Mary-Claire’s chin. It disappeared like dust when Mary-Claire had tried to touch it, her hand had gone through it and the woman had disappeared too.

Mary-Claire frowned to herself. Had she really just seen a ghost? Had it been her Grandmother? Or was it just her imagination…

She’d never know.

© 2011 LilMissWriter17

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Indeed very good writing and it is very refreshing to find a young writer like yourself writing in third person. It gave me goose bumps. I felt a connection to the story and its characters. I was very impressed.

Now what to fix?

‘Tell me now!’ Janey hissed(,) change to period))) ’Tell me now or I’ll….I’ll….’
‘You’ll what Janey?’ Mary-Claire spat(,) change to period))) ‘You’ll tell mother?’ She challenge, raising one (sceptical) the word is spelled (skeptical))) eyebrow.

It is the standard writers rule that you use double quotation marks (“) when beginning character speaking for example:

“Tell me now!” Jeney hissed. “Tell me now or I’ll… I’ll.”
“You’ll what Janey?” Mary Claire spat. “You’ll tell mother?” She challenge, raising skeptical eyebrow.

You can find many of your own examples in your novel of choice. You will find examples like mine. You may also note the single quotation mark ‘ is only used if you are using a quote or phrase someone else’s said. For example my mother once said ‘to feel free like a bird is to easy your mind of troubles.’ Another rule of thumb is to place all periods, question marks and comas in side the double quotes “ like the examples shown.

You can use your single quotation inside the double quotes like this example.

“My mother once said ‘to feel free like a bird is to easy your mind of troubles.’”

Again very good writing also note in my example of your writing I corrected the spelling phrasing changing comas to periods after the word (hissed) and the word spat)

Again very good writing I am very proud of you and look forward to more of your writing.

Posted 9 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Very well written I loved it really kept me interested at first it was a lil slow for me but im always like that when i first read a stopry was very enjoyable and i wanted to read mroe great job! I hope to read more of your work soon.

Posted 9 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

An enjoyable read....ending very intersting too...

Posted 9 Years Ago

2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

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4 Reviews
Added on December 1, 2011
Last Updated on December 1, 2011
Tags: Halloween, Holidays, Family, Ghosts.



United Kingdom

Hi! I'm Jess, i'm 19 :) I love reading, writing and drawing :) My dream is to be a published writer, I love writing, it is my passion and I'll never give it up! :) My favourite authors include JK Rowl.. more..


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