Today is different because I’m posting an excerpt as part of the press release of Second Endings by Lulu M. Sylvian.
But first, I would like to extend my gratitude to G and Lulu for reaching out and giving me an opportunity to join the tour 🙂
Lulu M. Slyvian
August 13, 2019 by Griffyn Ink
Hollywood has-been hunk finds a talented illustrator to write him into the perfect life he didn’t have. Life doesn’t give you do-overs, neither does the afterlife.
Believe in love after life.
Medical illustrator Gillian Denver has a unique talent, and it’s not her ability to depict the systems of the body accurately and artistically. She can talk to spirits, only she doesn’t realize it.
Peter Keith, a one-time TV sitcom star whose career dissolved from A-lister hunk, to out of shape, straight-to-cable-movie D-lister has a problem. Peter regrets decisions he made in his life, and would like a do-over. He convinces Gillian to help him. One little problem, Peter is dead.
Thinking it’s her overactive imagination causing her reoccurring dreams about Peter to spill into daylight hours, Gillian finds herself talking to him while she works. Together they begin to recreate Peter’s life by writing a book the way he wishes things had worked out. Gillian is not fully convinced that Peter is anything more than something she made up, a glorified imaginary friend, a new muse.
Gillian’s feelings for Peter complicate her relationships with the living. She is afraid the love she has for Peter will never be enough because she cannot give him what he really needs, a resolution to the life he wasn’t ready to leave.
“Wait, Gilly, I’m glad you’re home. I have to ask you something.” Mike had swiveled around to look at me. He sounded pretty serious, so I changed direction and plopped back down on the couch next to him.
“S’up?” I hadn’t noticed any quaver to his voice, but he actually looked concerned, his dark almond shaped eyes wide. Suddenly, he looked like a frail Korean boy-band singer, pretty and over dramatic.
“Mike, you okay?”
His appearance took on a whole new pallor as he thought about what he needed to say. Crap, I hope he wasn’t evicting me. I paid my rent on time. He took a long moment, centering himself. He held his hand to his chest, long narrow fingers resting below his collar bone.
“I’ve been seeing something the past few days on and off, and today, it freaked me out.” He took in a deep breath.
I squinted at him, tilting my head in question.
“Gilly, I think we have a ghost.”
I sat back and bit my thumbnail.
“You can see him too?” I whispered.
Mike gasped, covered his mouth as he pulled back from me. “I thought I was crazy, but I swear I keep seeing a big cat on the stairs. You’ve seen it?”
I sighed, relaxing a bit. I thought he was talking about Peter. Yes we had a cat ghost. I was so used to it walking in and out of my life, I really hadn’t thought about it. Poor Mike, the cat really was freaking him out.
“Yeah,” I drawled out the word, trying to figure out how to tell Mike he really was seeing a cat, and hoping he didn’t freak and kick me out. “I’m sorry I didn’t warn you about him. He’s a friendly, if that helps.”
“Warn me? You moved in with a pet ghost? I might need a security deposit for that,” Mike giggled. Good, he was relaxing.
“I’ve had this spirit cat following me around off and on for the past ten years or so,” I began explaining. “He, I think it’s a he, showed up in college. He usually just slinks around the hall ways. He’s shown up at almost every place I’ve lived. I’ve even gotten into the habit of telling him when I’m getting ready to move so he knows to follow.”
“And you didn’t think to share this with me?”
I snorted. “Right, and just how does one announce when looking for a place to live they are bringing their ghost animals with them?”
“Good point,” he conceded.
“Honestly Mike, you’re the first roommate I’ve had who has ever seen him. He must like you.”
“What does it mean, why is he here?” Mike was searching for some deeper meaning to the cat.
I shrugged. “I honestly don’t know. He never seems to precede some kind of danger or stress. So, he’s not a harbinger of any kind. He just shows up and makes me wonder why there’s a cat there. I think he’s comfortable here.”
“So, what you’re saying is he’s a nice ghost kitty?”
I nodded. I thought about telling him about Peter—then again maybe not. He freaked out over the cat. When people don’t see spirits regularly, I understand how it would freak them out. Heck, Mr. Cat caught me off guard more than once and spooked me a few times. I decided I wouldn’t tell Mike about the other cat—the Thing.
I had two cats that would visit me, occasionally. They would wander around for a while, then curl up in a window and “sleep” mostly. I guess if it looks like ghost cat is sleeping, that is what ghost cat is doing.
Now, the Thing could be positively freaky. The Thing was big and grey, and it swam. I wasn’t really sure what it was. Dolphin? Shark? Matinee? Kraken? When the Thing would swim past and brush up against me, it made everything go ice cold and I could feel the water ebb and flow around me. In all fairness, I hadn’t seen the Thing in several years, unlike the cats who I saw last month.
I decided to not tell Mike about the Thing. Cats were one issue—the Thing was a whole different level of ghostly weirdness.
I had started back up the stairs before I remembered to ask, “Mike, when you saw the cat, what color was he?”
“What do you mean what color?”
“I was just wondering if it was the big black one or the ginger tabby.” I ran up the stairs.
Mike called after me, “There are two of them?”
“Yep, we’ve got two ghost cats.” I ducked into my room. I was trying not to laugh. I had whammied Mike there at the end.
Peter sat on my side chair chuckling
“Did you hear all that?” I asked out loud before switching to head talk. I didn’t need Mike finding out about the full grown human ghost too.
Yeah. I’ve never seen these cats of yours,Peter confessed.
Can’t you see other ghosts?I asked, curious if there were more spirits or entities out there that I couldn’t recognize.
Not that I can tell. But then again, I can’t talk to people either. I can get inside their heads, and I can hear them if they are projecting their thoughts. But you seem to be the only one who can hear and see me.
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