A Ghost Story, Part 7

And we’re back with the next segment in our story, Revis and I. We hope you enjoy. I know I enjoyed writing my half… And that’s not half bad? I shouldn’t be allowed to write these intros after a certain point.

…..

“He called them the ‘dark arts’ but,” Jake’s mother stated after a few moments, her voice no longer quivering, “that was more of a joke, a play on words, than actually being related to what most people think of when they hear that term.  He wasn’t summoning demons.  He wasn’t doing blood sacrifices or anything like that.  There was no dancing naked in the moonlight.  Well, I mean, not related to any of this.”

She added that last bit in a whisper and then looked away, a wistful smile on her lips and a faraway look in her eyes. 

“Mom!”

Without looking back to her son, she continued, “He called them the dark arts because it was dark when the spirits liked to come out and magic is definitely a kind of art.  It takes practice and patience and skill…”

She paused again.  Based on her expression, Jake guessed she was still reliving some memory of her time with his father. 

Jake had a million questions but he knew the pause would be brief.  His mom needed this mental break and then she would gather her thoughts and spill the rest of her tale.  He took the moment to settle on the floor next to her.  He was tired and had a feeling that it was going to be a long day ahead.  There was an undercurrent of excitement bubbling in his thoughts. I’m going to learn magic.

“Again, I only know a few things. I’ll show you what I can, but it’s not much. If your father was here…”

There was pain in her voice. It was the first time she’d displayed any emotion other than anger when she talked about his father. He’d had many questions about his father when he was growing up, but he rarely asked them because she’d react angrily when he did. Back then, he thought she did that because his father had done something horrible to her. Now he thought she reacted that way purposefully, so he’d stop asking questions. 

“I wish I could tell you what happened to your father, Jake,” she said as she tried to hold back tears. “I really do, but the truth is that I don’t know what happened to him. Right after he showed me the fire trick, he started acting strange, kind of paranoid. When I asked what was going on, he’d either brush it off or tell me that something big was coming, but he didn’t know what it was, only that he had a bad feeling about it. Finally, one day, he just never came home.”

“Did you go to the police?”

She smiled sadly. “And tell them that my magic man was missing because he had a bad feeling about something? No. They wouldn’t have believed me. I was tempted to go a few times anyway, but each time I was about to walk out the door, I’d get a sickening feeling in the pit of my stomach. Eventually, I just gave up.”

Jake opened his mouth to retort his disbelief that she could just give up on looking for his dad, for her husband, but thought better of it.  He’d only been living with the idea that magic was real for a handful of minutes and he knew there was no way he’d take any of what had just happened to the police.  They wouldn’t understand.  They wouldn’t help.  If anything, it would make the situation worse because extra scrutiny would be put on him and his family.

His mom was studying him and seemed to be following along with his thoughts, because when he closed his mouth she nodded.  There was nothing more she could have done.

“Okay, you know I love fire, so let’s get started,” Jake said, trying to lighten the mood a bit while also getting back on track.  The spirit, or ghost, or whatever it was would be back soon and he wanted to be prepared to help fight it.

His mom laughed and shook her head, “Oh, you don’t get to start with that one.  You have to earn it.”

She pushed herself off the ground and moved next to the sink, setting the fire extinguisher on the counter nearby.  She ran two handfuls of water and splashed them into her face and then turned to look at her son.  “First, “ she said, “you have to learn the cadence of magic.”

Jake sighed. He hoped that he’d be able to jump right into it, especially given the circumstances, but it seemed like his mom was starting off with the boring stuff. It also sounded a lot like something she’d said to him many times before, “It’s not just what you say. It’s how you say it.” Throughout his life, he’d heard her say that to him a lot and, even though she was using different words, he was hearing it again. They didn’t have much time until the ghost, or spirit, or whatever, recovered from the fire. Shouldn’t she skip to the important parts instead of taking her time with the lessons? 

Despite his frustration, he paid attention to what his mother was saying. Or, at least he was until he felt a thump coming from underneath his feet. Jake wrote it off as his imagination until it happened a second time. He held up his hand to indicate his mother should stop talking. She looked annoyed when she saw him do it, but she followed his suggestion. Her expression changed at once when she felt the third thump.

“Oh no,” she breathed. Her volume increased exponentially when she then shouted, “Block the basement door!”

It was too late. An animated corpse, missing a hand, broke the door down, rage etched on his features.

Jake grabbed the fire extinguisher and prepared to throw it at the thing advancing towards them.  His mom screamed, “Don’t!  Not that!” and he shifted at the last moment and sent the extinguisher sailing out of the kitchen.  It crashed into something with a metallic clang but Jake had turned to his mom, eyebrows raised questioningly, a look of exasperation on his face, so he didn’t see what it had hit.

“The bottle,” his mom said, pointing towards the alcohol they had used earlier.

Jake followed her gesture and understanding hit him.  He raced to the far edge of the counter we’re he’d poured the cups earlier, grabbed it by its neck and threw it at the ghastly creature.  At the same time, his mom raced forward, the spray can and lighter once again in her hands.

The bottle crashed into the being, it grunted but didn’t slow its advance, and thumped to the floor at its feet where the alcohol began to slosh out the opening.  Jake’s heart fell.  He’d hoped the bottle would shatter and completely cover the thing in the flammable liquid.  His eyes cast about for some other weapon to attack with.

Then his mom was in striking distance and she once again created the black flames.  She pointed the jet at the pool of alcohol at the feet of the monster.  In a great whoosh, the whole thing became engulfed in flames.  A second later, the bottle exploded sending shards of glass flying in every direction.

Jake felt something like a needle prick in his cheek and a stinging sensation in his left arm, just above his elbow. Droplets of blood began appearing at the site, turning into a slow stream of his life fluid. Given the wet feeling on his cheek, he thought it safe to assume that he had a similar cut there. At a glance, he could see that his mother was also sporting a few blood spots, but none of them seemed to be too serious. 

She, however, was fixated on the walking corpse. It had just received the exact same treatment that destroyed the severed hand, yet it wasn’t affected at all. The corpse stood in the flames without being harmed by them. Decaying flesh turned upward as a devilish smile worked onto its face. A blast of icy air, one that Jake thought was colder than any winter breeze he’d ever felt, blew in from behind the corpse and extinguished the fire. Still, no damage appeared on the dead body.

“You were warned, boy,” it said without moving its lips. “I gave you a chance to save her. Had you told your mother earlier, she could have prepared a spell to save herself. Now, she must pay for her sins.”

“What sins?” Jake responded with a quaking voice.

“For starters,” it croaked, “she killed me in ritual sacrifice to make herself more powerful.”

A Ghost Story part 5

Here we are again. Another segment in the new story Revis and I are working on. We hope you are having a ghoully good time.

….

Jake’s mom snatched her hand back.  Jake, startled, hadn’t realized he had never moved his hand off hers when he’d tried to get her attention.  He was slightly embarrassed but pleased to see her eyes had returned to normal all the same.  Coughing, Jake looked back to the screen.

His mother asked, “Did you read any of that?”

“Yes.  I got a little bit of it before I blinked and it went back to being blurry.”

“This is so strange.”

“You’re telling me.”

Frowning, Jake’s mother looked at him.  “Is there anything else you haven’t told me?”

“Not that I can think of, no.  Why?”

She was taking all of this far more calmly than he ever could have imagined.  It wasn’t that he didn’t think she loved and trusted him, she was always just very strict and meticulous about how things were supposed to be done.  But, her behavior since he’d first told her about his encounters made it seem like she’d had experiences like this before.

“We’re missing something.”

Jake was confused.  “What?”

“Hauntings happen for a reason.  We need to figure out why you are being haunted.”  Jake thought about mentioning that she had very nearly been attacked too but kept his mouth shut.  His mom continued, “I need to remember where I’ve seen that man before.”

“I don’t know, Mom,” he replied. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen him before. He doesn’t look familiar to me.”

“It’s going to annoy me until I figure it out,” she sighed. “Plus, I’ve worked all night. I’m tired and my brain isn’t functioning correctly right now. I need coffee if I’m going to figure this out.”

The two of them went down the stairs and into the kitchen. His mom poured water into the coffee maker, put new grounds into a new filter, and turned it on. They waited in silence, both lost in their thoughts. Jake was staring straight ahead at the wall until the sound of coffee dripping into the pot pulled him out of it. He turned his head from side to side in an attempt to pop his neck. It didn’t work, but he noticed something as he did it. 

“What’s that?” Jake asked as he pointed to the package sitting on the counter next to the fridge. 

“I don’t know. The guy dropped it off last night when I was trying to talk to you before I left,” she told him. Jake was about to ask a follow-up question, but his mother’s face suddenly changed. “That’s where I’ve seen him before,” she cried. “He was the delivery driver!”

“What?”  But even as he asked the question Jake knew it was no more absurd than the man showing up in his bedroom last night.

Without waiting for his mom to respond, Jake went over to the counter and began to unwrap the package.  Whatever it is, it must be important.  Hopefully it will at least give us a clue as to what in the world is going on.

He’d ripped the seal off the package but hadn’t yet pulled the contents out.  It felt like a book.  Why is everything circling back to books?

“Stop!” His mom screamed, her voice firm but unsteady.

He turned to her and saw a look of terror on her face.  He was going to ask what was wrong when he felt the room suddenly go cold.  His arms erupted in gooseflesh.  A shiver ran up his spine.  His next breath was visible as a puff of warm air in the freezing room.

“Run,” he said.  It was all he could think to say as a pair of hands emerged from the shadows next to the counter and reached for his mom.

She didn’t though.  She was frozen in place.  Her eyes were the only part of her moving as they flicked between the package delivered by a ghost and the phantom that had followed its hands into their kitchen and was gliding swiftly towards her.

Jake’s head was telling him to run away, as far away from this situation as he could possibly get. His heart was telling him to rush over and save his mother. While the two body parts fought with each other, another of his body parts began acting of its own accord. Mindlessly, his hand reached inside the box he’d just opened and pulled out the contents. Then, it positioned the object directly in his line of sight.

It was not a book as he originally thought it would be, though it was the same shape as one. Inside the box had been a clear hard plastic case containing a severed human hand. Wanting only to get it far away from him, Jake instinctively threw it as quickly as he could. Without taking the time to aim, it ended up flying straight at his mother. 

Seeing a severed hand coming at her snapped Jake’s mother out of her stupor. She ducked out of the way, causing the case to hit the cabinet behind her head. With a loud crack, the plastic shattered. While the pieces of the case went flying in every direction, the hand floated down gently, like a leaf, until it landed on her shoulder. 

Just as her son had, she grabbed the hand and flung it away from herself. The unattached appendage only made it a few feet before it stopped, caught in the air by the spectral hands.

“Run!” Jake yelled again but his mom still didn’t heed his advice.  His own feet refused to budge either.  For good or ill he wanted to see what happened next.

The decapitated hand seemed to shift of its own accord, moving from the hand that had caught it into becoming the hand that had caught it.  The sight was so disturbing that Jake wanted to look away but he couldn’t.  He was fascinated.

Once the decapitated hand had completely fused with the ghost there was a piercing shriek of laughter and the rest of the spirit seemed to swell forward.  Where there had only been a shadow beyond the arms there was not a full body.  And a face. 

Its eyes glowed with a malice that Jake could feel crawling on his skin and its lips were twisted into a snarl that made Jake immediately think of one thing and one thing only.  This thing hates us.

The ghost took a step forward, now reaching out with one spectral hand and one very real hand, and was nearly in reach of his mother.  Jake knew that shouting for her to run again would be useless.  He needed to do something though.  Another step and the thing would have his mother in its grasp.

Time stood still for Jake at that moment. For his whole life, whenever he was scared, or in trouble, it was his mother who was there to help him out of it. He had no siblings. His dad had long ago left the picture. He had friends, sure, but he knew that none of them would ever be there for him as much as his mother was. And now, now she needed him.

As much as he wanted to be there for her as she had been for him, he had no idea what to do. He didn’t have a Ghostbusters backpack. He didn’t have a Bible. The only clue he had about what this ghost wanted was a book about preparing for college, and, as a clue, it went right over his head. What did preparing for college have to do with hanging around in the afterlife? And what did the book’s author, someone neither he or his mother had ever met, have to do with any of this? 

Time snapped back into being when he remembered what he’d just read about running away from the ghost. Then something else came to mind. “Over here,” he yelled at the spectral hands. “It’s me you want, remember?”

Jake was sure of it. He was the one who was warned. He was the one who was choked. Whatever this was, it wasn’t until his mother started helping him that she was targeted. This ghost, for whatever reason, wanted him. 

The ghost turned slowly towards Jake.  It seemed like it was taking time for the message to get to it.  Maybe it takes time for sounds to cross through the barrier between worlds.  Or maybe he’s just not very smart.  Jake hoped it was the latter but felt certain it was the former.

The burning eyes locked onto his own and Jake felt panic grip his heart as he saw recognition behind the ghost’s eyes.  The spirit flew at him.  It moved faster than he’d seen it move up to that point.

Run! Jake screamed internally and this time he listened to himself.

Nearly tripping over his own feet, Jake turned, stumbled, and fled towards his room.  He wasn’t sure why but perhaps the answer was there, in his bookcase, or in the college prep book.  He could feel wisps of icy air brushing against the back of his neck.  The touch burned and a scream escaped his lip. 

The ghost was nearly on top of him.

He threw himself up the stairs two and three at a time.  His heart pounded.  He could hear his mom shrieking somewhere behind him.  Another brush of ice on his neck nearly made him stumble but he reached the landing and hurtled down the hallway to his room.  His eyes spotted the college prep book, Unprepared, he grabbed it and whirled around holding the book in front of him like a shield.

Without thinking, he closed his eyes and waited for whatever was coming next. Something hit the book hard, almost making him lose his grip. The sound the impact made reminded him of a baseball hitting a bat. He opened his eyes right after and saw the unattached hand go flying away from the book, also like a baseball. It flew out into the hallway, into the bathroom directly across from his room, and smacked against the wall.

Jake held the book out in front of him as he rushed out of his room. The hand had made a hole in the drywall when it hit and it appeared to be having difficulty extracting itself from the damage. He closed the door to the bathroom and ran back downstairs to the kitchen. When he arrived, his mother was shaking her head slowly from side to side. Her rhythm was interrupted when he grabbed her shoulders and got right in her face.

“Mom!” Jake shouted. “We’ve got to get out of here!”

Recognition came back to her eyes when she looked at him. “No,” she returned calmly. “We have to fight it.”

A ghost story part 3

Yep, Revis and I are back again on this story already. Sometimes the words come easily. Hopefully you continue to enjoy our little tale of fright and intrigue.

…..

The book, a dark purple with silver markings he didn’t recognize running up the spine, sparked as he touched it.  The tiny electric flare seemed to hang in the air far longer than any normal static-electricity and then it disappeared with a loud pop.  Jake flinched at the sound but didn’t stop what he was doing. He had nearly been killed now twice and he needed to know what was going on so he could keep whatever was attacking him from finishing the job. 

Pulling the book completely off the shelf, Jake began to flip through the pages.  There were all kinds of macabre pictures, from headless people riding horses, to unrecognizable horrors under beds, to barely scene phantoms in the shadowy recesses of closets.

A shiver ran up his spine as he flipped through the book.  At the same time, a sense of frustration began to build up.  The pictures were horrifying, yes, but they didn’t give him any information on their own.  Not that he immediately understood anyway.  He didn’t know what he was looking at or why.  And the markings that covered the pages that didn’t have pictures were in a language he didn’t know.

What am I supposed to do with this?

Jake started to put the book back on the shelf when movement from the corner of his eye caused him to stop.  He turned towards the open room but there was nothing there. A week ago he would’ve moved on without thinking any more about it. Today was a new day, however. Just because he didn’t see anything now didn’t mean there wasn’t anything there. After all, he didn’t see what was causing the pressure that cut off the air to his still sore throat. 

The last time he was in trouble he got out of it by waving a book around in front of him. While he wasn’t necessarily in trouble at the moment, the movement was more than enough to make him feel like trouble was coming. With that in mind, he shook the dark purple tome all around. Nothing happened. Not physically, at least. The foreboding feeling he was getting went away after continuing to move the book around for a few moments. He waited for a minute to see if it would come back, but it didn’t. 

Jake kept his hand on the book while his mind went back to trying to figure out a way to read it. Immediately, an idea struck him. He sat down at his desk and turned on his laptop. There were a number of programs online that were designed to translate things. He’d never used any of them on anything more than a word or phrase, and that was after typing the words into a text box on the screen. Using one to translate something written in a book was something new.

He took pictures of the first few pages of text with his webcam and loaded them into the first translation program he found.

The thinking icon spun for longer than it should have, even given the large amount of data he was trying to translate, and Jake began to frown.  He knew it hadn’t worked before the page refreshed with the red letters across the top saying no translation had been found.

I can’t give up though.  There has to be something here.

Setting aside the purple book, Jake picked up Unprepared and flipped through it again.  Nothing jumped out at him so he closed it and turned to the back cover.  The picture looked exactly like the man who had been standing in his room.  Then, for the first time, Jake noticed that under the author’s name were the dates, “June 1st, 1953 – June 7th, 2020.”

“Wait?  He’s dead?”

He felt foolish saying it.  He hadn’t really stopped to consider how the man had been in his room and then disappeared.  The how of what was going on had seemed less important than the what or the why.

Was that his ghost?

He didn’t want to voice that question.  Somehow saying the word “ghost” out loud seemed like a bad idea.  But, he hadn’t gotten a new idea.  Turning to his laptop again, he opened a search engine and typed in “Marten Revulus,” the author’s name.

He had a sense of trepidation that only grew as the search results popped up immediately with one missing person account after another. Jake looked through them until he found the newest link, dated almost a year ago. His trepidation faded as he read. It was replaced by interest. The story of Marten Revulus was not as boring as he first thought it would be. 

Ten years prior to the article’s publication, Marten had been reported missing by his wife, who had come home to find him gone and a pile of glass in his garage where his car should have been. One theory was that Marten had walked in on someone trying to steal his car and the carjacker took care of him in order to keep him quiet. Another was that his wife had paid someone to kill him while she was away. No evidence to support these claims ever surfaced and, by all accounts, Mr. and Mrs. Revulus had a loving and strong relationship. The rest of the theories got crazier from there.

Years passed with no new leads and the story was mostly forgotten until Marten’s wife petitioned to have him declared legally dead, a petition that the judge granted the day before the article. There was no specific reason given for the timing of the wife’s petition. All the article said was that she needed to do it for “legal reasons”. More than likely, Jake thought, it had more to do with finances than legalities. 

How did all of that fit in with what  happened to him? It didn’t, as far as he could tell. What would the ghost of Marten Revulus want with him? He was barely older than a toddler when Revulus disappeared. Plus, there was no way to be sure that the man was even dead. How could there be a ghost of someone who was still alive?

How could there be a ghost of someone who is still alive?  Now that’s a funny thought.  Like something out of one of those space wizard movies…

Jake shook his head, half smiling.  Nope.  Too ridiculous.

He went back to scanning articles, trying to make some sense of who the author was, why he had disappeared and what it all had to do with him here and now.  The sound of the front door opening, his mom getting home from work, startled him from his research and he realized how late it was.  He turned off the computer screen and jumped into bed.  He’d be in for it if she knew he’d spent the night online instead of sleeping.  

Eyes closed and doing his best to slow his breathing, he listened as she came up the stairs, stopped at his doorway for a moment, and then carried on to her room.  He opened his eyes again and stared at the ceiling.  It was useless to try and get to sleep now.  His alarm was going to go off in about an hour and if he dozed it would leave him groggier than if he just stayed up.  Plus, his throat was still sore.  He didn’t exactly feel like he could fall asleep again.

A moment later he was sitting upright in bed.  The front door had just opened again.  A new set of footsteps was coming up the stairs, coming down the hall, nearing his room. Before he could even start to contemplate what this second occurrence was, it happened a third time. Then, a fourth. It was followed quickly by a fifth.

His mind was racing. He wanted to get out of bed, rush to the doorway, and investigate the noises. At the same time, he also wanted to stay in bed. Not only were the sound of the footsteps confusing, but they were ratcheting up the fear he was feeling. Jake was already scared after the two times he almost suffocated in the last half a day, but adding these noises on top of that was beginning to fray his nerves. Each footstep made him wince just a little, especially when they didn’t stop at his doorway like they had been. Whatever was making them was coming into his room.

Jake closed his eyes. When the footsteps sounded like they were next to his bed, he peeked through his eyelids, hoping that whatever was there wouldn’t notice. It didn’t work. His mother stood over him and she didn’t look happy. “Have you been up all night?” she asked angrily. 

“No,” he answered honestly. “I slept.”

She looked him over, trying to decide if he was telling the truth. Giving him the benefit of the doubt, she instructed, “Go back to sleep.”

“But…”

“No buts. Go back to sleep.”

She didn’t give him a chance to argue before she turned around to walk out of the room. Jake had words that he wanted to get out, but they had nothing to do with arguing with her. The words he wanted to get out were a warning to her about the spectral hands that were trailing in her wake, closing in to grab her.

Christmas Spirit – not what you think

The dark shape slipped across the floor.

I saw it clearly, yet without form.  It was around the size of a cat and moved in a swift stalking motion.  I turned, fully expecting to see one of my two cats, but there was nothing there.  No cats.  No further movements.  No hint of what I had seen.

I turned away to see if the movement would return, perhaps it was just the light bending at the edge of my contacts, perhaps it was just a shadow running in from the open doorway, but, again, there was nothing there.  I looked back to the spot on the floor and frowned.

Three options, that’s what I came up with in that moment.  One, I had seen something that was moving between worlds, here for an instant and then gone again on whatever errand or chase or adventure it pursued.  Two, my lack of consistent sleep had finally started to catch up to me and my mind was playing tricks on me as a not-so-subtle warning that it was starting to slip.  Or three, my over-active imagination was running rampant again.

Of the choices, I am most comfortable with it being my imagination and least comfortable with it being a warning from my brain that I need more sleep.  I suspect, however, that it was in fact a playful spirit running through the room.

Because that is what I want it to be.

Because it isn’t the first time I’ve seen it.

Because that makes the better story.

And you, faithful kingdomites, what do you think?  Which of the options do you think is most likely?  Do you have a Christmas Spirit story to share?

Magic Vs. Reality Tug-Of-War Results

Those crazy wonderful folks over at Daily Prompt asked: “The Tooth Fairy (or Easter Bunny, or Santa Claus . . .) : a fun and harmless fiction, or a pointless justification for lying to children?”

I didn’t want to answer right away and then remembered that we have a great resource at our disposal for answering questions like this; so, I brought it up for a Tug-Of-War resolution.

And you played along…

The winner by an absolute avalanche is “fun and harmless fiction.”

The tallies:
fun fiction – 57
pointless lying – 19

Keeping the magic of being a child alive came out of the gates strong and pulled the truth into the mud before it could even start to put up a fight.  The truth did try and pull itself out of the mud but never got enough support to manage it.  Thus proving that magic trumps truth always and forever.

I’ve known it all along.  Magic does exist!

Magic:
http://evankropp.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-post-fantasy/
http://natalieelizabethbeech.com/2013/03/08/fiction-isnt-a-liebut-maybe-youre-liars/
http://mauldinfamily1.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://livingywf.com/2013/03/08/toothfairy-tales/
http://rightdownmyalley.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/pixie-dust-and-elfin-tales/
http://hopethehappyhugger.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/fantasmagorical/
http://shireensingh.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/tooth-fairies-and-all-that-jazz/
http://sortaginger.com/these-peeps-are-making-me-dizzy/
http://minqan.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://smileyface80.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://beyondbeautytips.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/fantasy-and-happy-endings/
http://aleniaban.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/imagine-for-hope/
http://beingspecial.org/2013/03/08/fantasy_or_lying/
http://neverstationary.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/my-childhood-was-net-better/
http://linesbylinda.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy-lies-to-survive/
http://stuphblog.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/childhood-fables-yay-or-nay/
http://spunkywayfarer.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/stories-on-the-rock/
http://basicallybeyondbasic.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://findingthathappiness.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/how-my-childhood-insecurities-has-made-me-love-fantasies/
http://sharemydadsays.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/cupid-floating-over-rivers-of-sands-floods-and-gust-hear-me-hear-me/
http://thepigmentsoflife.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/a-lil-fantasy-takes-the-truth-a-long-way/
http://jaschmehl.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/mad-molly/
http://polysyllabicprofundities.com/2013/03/08/santas-not-real/
http://theloneshewolf.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/pass-the-mini-eggs/
http://jaycee68.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/fantasy-lies-who-cares/
http://angloswiss.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://randomencountersoftheinquisitivemind.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/aint-nowt-wrong-with-a-bit-of-fantasy/
http://paulscribbles.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/the-whole-tooth-and-nothing-but-the-tooth/
http://creativemysteries.net/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy-im-thankful-for-those-little-fairy-tales/
http://arayofsun.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/the-easter-bunny-and-other-life-characters/
http://daddysnaughtylittlegirl.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://zonbipurinsesu.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/the-tooth-fairy-sounded-kind-of-like-dad/
http://thoughtsofrkh.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/oh-come-on-let-the-kids-imagination-run-wild/
http://happymonkeyland.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/life-is-just-a-fantasy-can-you-live-this-fantasy-life/
http://ponderingspawned.com/2013/03/08/the-daily-post-fantasy/
http://mihirkamat.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/the-storytellers/
http://mcswhispers.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/guardians-of-fantasy/
http://klling.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompttug-of-war-fun-fiction-or-pointless-lie/
http://marysomnibus.com/2013/03/08/the-tooth-fairy/
http://artisticmilestone.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/tooth-fairy-mission-impossible/
http://life-with-the-topdown.com/2013/03/09/lies-or-leverage/
http://melinarepetti.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/its-a-kind-of-magic/
http://fairyspell.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/why-would-i-lie-to-my-kids/
http://atomickaleidoscope.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/caught-in-the-middle/
http://somedayiwilllearn.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/dpchallenge-tooth-fairy-troubles/
http://nightowlgail.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://dkoeker.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/horrors-of-childhood-fantasies/
http://makingitdaily.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/claire-lies-our-children-tell-us/
http://learnrunwrite.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/the-power-of-storytelling/
http://mikesensitivity.com/2013/03/believe-in-magic/
http://tirochelle.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://dramaqueenunderthesun.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/fantasy/
http://thebloggingpath.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/#more-195534
http://thebeltanedaily.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/93-daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://nevercryoverspilledmilk.wordpress.com/2013/03/12/daily-prompt-fantasy-a-fun-and-harmless-fiction-or-a-pointless-justification-for-lying-to-children/
http://colonialist.wordpress.com/about/
http://mycookinglife.com/blogging-about-blogging/

……….

Reality:
http://jitterygt.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/you-cant-handle-the-truth/
http://notsoprompt.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/trust-me/
http://starvingactivist.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-ho-ho-huh/
http://adityaviyer.com/2013/03/08/fantasies-when-the-truth-isnt-good-enough/
http://jacksdavie.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/one-of-lifes-dreamers/
http://thelissachronicles.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/fantasy-or-reality-childhood-tales/
http://myatheistblog.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://untilmyheartexplodes.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/darn-lies/
http://alldayrandom.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/fantasy/
http://crazyasnormal.com/2013/03/08/the-one-with-santa-claus-in-march/
http://layedbacklife.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy-two-days-in-a-row/
http://lenadealmeida.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://nowwritingeveryday.com/2013/03/08/fantasy-or-lack-thereof/
http://thewritingculturist.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/the-easter-bunny-is-scary/
http://daydreamingagain.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/joyueux-anniversaire/
http://movingnotion.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://likereadingontrains.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/unmatched-by-any-present-daily-prompt-fantasy/
http://dianarasmussen.com/2013/03/09/happily-ever-after/
http://theimaginator.wordpress.com/2013/03/11/daily-prompt-tug-of-war-fun-or-deception/

Some of these were very hard to place properly, according to the official counter.  They did their best, but if you feel your support went behind the wrong team let us know and we will adjust the numbers accordingly.

As a clarifying example: for those who said they wouldn’t perpetuate these stories to their own children we decided that should count on the Reality side of the tug-of-war despite any other arguments for Magic they had.

Thanks for playing.  The shower for those who need to rinse the mud off is just down the hall and to the left.  There are plenty of towels.