Seance club, p.1
Copyright 6/11/13 By Raymond Daley
I'd been listening to their conversation for well over thirty-five minutes when I finally turned around to say something to them. Well, someone had to.
"Do you mind? This is a private meeting!" they shouted at me.
I had to struggle to hold back my derisive laughter. A private meeting in a public place, conducted at the tops of their voices? It was clear that these fourteen year old girls probably considered the entire planet as their private meeting place.
"Do I mind?" Again I had to hold myself back, reminding myself that they were just three kids. Three kids who'd chosen to hold a seance on a bus of all places! "Actually yes, I do mind! Were you taught any manners by your parents? Or common sense?
For starters, you're conducting this 'private' meeting in a very public place.
Secondly, you're doing it very loudly.
Thirdly, you're having a god-damned seance on a bus?
Did none of you think it might be remotely dangerous to be messing with this kind of thing? And how about showing some common decency? The one thing you really shouldn't do at any seance is speak ill of the person you are trying to contact. You've been slagging the poor girl off for well over fifteen minutes now. Were you taught any respect at all by your parents?"
I thought to myself, whoever this poor girl was they were trying to contact, I wouldn't have been surprised if she'd killed herself just to get away from their bullying comments.
Little did I know how right I was.
The three of them spent the rest of the journey looking daggers into the back of my head.
Go ahead, I'm a big boy. Unlike you three who appear to prefer safety in numbers, I can actually look after myself.
They got off one stop before I did. One of them made some kind of hand gesture towards me as she walked past. Casting the evil eye, I assumed. I resisted the urge to give her the finger.
They were long gone by the time I got off though, nowhere in sight.
But then something odd did happen.
"Excuse me," that was a young sounding female voice coming from behind me.
I turned around. There was no-one there.
"You can hear me then?" The voice appeared to be coming from nowhere.
I shook my head. I was imagining it.
"Listen, if you can hear me, I need you to help me," the voice said.
"Nope, figment of my imagination. Because I saw that stupid seance," I said out loud to myself.
"It might have looked stupid but it worked. Why they linked me to you, I don't know. I've no idea who you even are," she said.
"Nor I you," I said.
"Wendy Smyth," the voice said. That was the girl they'd been talking about on the bus. "That's Wendy with an i, by the way."
"Allan Bush," I said.
"And now we know each other. So, can you help me?" Wendi said.
"I'm not sure. Can I?" I asked.
"Listen, you heard what they're like. The last thing I want is to be stuck forever under their spell. I just want to cross over. If that happens, they can't call me back again," Wendi said.
"Yeah, I saw what they were like. Complete and utter shits. I'd have killed myself to get away from kids like that," I said.
"I did," Wendi said.
"Oh damn, sorry. I didn't mean..." I started to ramble.
"It's okay," Wendi said. "You weren't to know. I thought I'd be free from them once I was dead. How wrong can a girl get?"
"So what do I have to do? How can I help you?" I asked.
"They've got binding agents, things that hold my spirit under their control at all times," Wendi said.
"You seem to be remarkably well informed on this stuff," I said.
"Probably because it was me that showed them how to do it all. They heard I was Wiccan. I figured that if I showed them a few things they might be friends with me. Guess again. Bitches don't change their spots." Poor Wendi, I was starting to feel sorry for her.
"That's not good," I said.
"It's not good for me. They found my book in my locker. Read about the binding agents. So they took my hairbrush and my chap-stick. And now they've got me whenever they want me," Wendi said. She sounded pretty miserable and I've always been a sucker for hard luck stories and damsels in distress are a bit of a personal speciality as far as I'm concerned.
"So I guess I need to get your stuff back?" I asked.
"And burn it. That should release me," she said.
"That might be difficult," I said.
"Not really Allan. They ride that bus at the same time every day, and they've always got my stuff in one of their bags. All you need to do is grab it all, and burn it," Wendi said.
"It might be a bit difficult for a grown man to take something from the bag of a fourteen year-old girl without looking like a sex offender," I said.
"Good point Allan. I think you're going to need the help of a woman."
"Easier said than done Wendi with an i. I don't know any women," I said.
We brainstormed our way through several more ideas all the way back to my place. We eventually came up with something that she thought would work.
"Listen Allan, I've got to go. The Bitches Of Eastwick are calling. Can I rely on you tomorrow?" Wendi said. Then she vanished before I had a chance to answer.
We were less than two minutes into the journey home before they started the seance. One of them looked up, gave me a hard stare, then went right back to whatever incantation she was trying to cast.
That was when I made my move.
I got up and walked to the front of the bus and quietly informed the driver that there was a suspicious looking bag sitting unattended at the back of the bus. And that had the exact effect I'd expected. She stopped and got out of the cab, walking down to the back of the bus.
I pointed the bag out to her and she nodded. "Everyone off the bus please. Don't stop to pick anything up. we've got a suspect piece of baggage."
She bustled the three girls out through the emergency exit, directing everyone else towards the front. In the second that she turned her back to make sure everyone in the front was now off the bus, I grabbed the bag and stuck it inside my jacket and got off. Everyone else was wandering about aimlessly so I took my opportunity and walked off down the street.
"You got it then?"
"Hello Wendi with an i. Yes, I got it. I saw them checking the brush so I know it's the right bag. There's an exercise book in there too," I said.
"Spell book actually," Wendi said.
"Whatever. I've got that too. I've no idea if the chap-stick is in there too," I said.
"It is. I just looked," Wendi said.
"Better you than me, Wendi. I'd just feel weird looking in a fourteen year-old girls school-bag," I said.
"Don't sweat it Allan. There's only my stuff in there. They aren't the kind of girls who take school work home. Or even do homework. I seem to remember doing it all for them. I think."
"Knowing people like them, you probably did. Listen, I've got a taxi waiting around the corner. We'll be back at mine in three minutes. I doubt they've even noticed the bag is gone," I said.
To her credit, the bus driver did everything by the book. Including calling the bomb squad. Who quite happily removed and checked the two bags the other girls had left behind when they got off.
They didn't mind the false alarm either, they said it was good practise.
Wendi and I were already in my back garden before the bus was under way again.
I'll give you one guess who noticed their bag was missing when they got back on. Actually no, I won't even give you o
In the garden I upended the bag in the middle of the grass and squirted some lighter fluid on it.
"You ready then, Wendi?" I asked.
"For what, Allan?" Wendi said.
"To be free, at last," I said, and dropped a match onto the exercise book, hairbrush and chap-stick tube.
It took less than a minute for it to turn into nothing but ashes.
"So what happens now, Wendi with an i?" I asked.
"Not sure Allan. I guess I should have read a bit more before I killed myself," she said.
"Can I ask, before you cross over? What's it like? Being dead, I mean?"
"Well Allan, it's..." and that's as far as Wendi with an i ever got. I was expecting a flash of light or a gust of wind or something as dramatic but she just stopped talking. And never started again.
Her friends still catch that bus. They don't have seances any more though. They're too busy discussing their sex lives with the local boys. Some kids never change, I guess.
At least Wendi is in a better place.
As for me? I'm still stuck on the number four bus route with the mean girls.
Authors Notes:- Yes, it's an old one. So old in fact that the number four bus stopped serving my neighbourhood shortly after I originally finished writing this. I got the idea for this on an actual bus, going to sign on. I was sat in the middle of a very loud group of schoolgirls (aged about 15, at a guess) who were having a high volume discussion about somthing you really shouldn't be discussing that loud on a bus.
I was going to say something to them but thought better of it. Instead I bit my tongue and came up with this.
Seance Club by Ray Daley / Humor / Horror have rating 2.8 out of 5 / Based on36 votes