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(A short story of 2257 words)



by Erinna Mettler

An old-fashioned ghost story, stranded by heavy snow, a group of friends at a village pub pass the time telling stories.

The blizzard resulted in a lock-in. The Druid’s Head was at the edge of the village, a good half a mile away from the first houses. At eleven Ryan, its landlord, looked out of the window at the thickly falling snow and declared we’d all freeze to death if we tried to walk home. Settled by the fire with freshly poured pints, someone said we should pass the time telling ghost stories. And so, as the blizzard rattled at the windows, five grown men set about trying to scare each other silly.

Most of the tales were bad movies re-located to the Devon countryside, deaths foreseen, cannibal farmers, The Honiton Witch Project and Ryan’s nonsense about the poltergeist that drinks all his profits. No-one was in the slightest bit frightened, but it was fun and even as the snow stopped, we lingered. Alex, our local teacher, went last, seemingly reluctant to join in when normally you couldn’t shut him up.

‘There is one story I could tell,’ he said when pressed...

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