Parliamentary Procedures

  1. Time is on our side
  2. The squeak on the stairs
  3. Movie of the week

TBP’s On-line Writer’s Guild #19

They were gathered in the upstairs bedroom, the bedroom that looked out over the courthouse. The doctor called the meeting to order.

“Quiet everyone, quiet,” he said. “We have a serious problem here and we need to address it. I think you are all aware that a new family has moved into the house and they have begun redecorating. We can’t have that. When Bill died we all naturally assumed that the house would stand vacant and we would have free reign.” Doctor Johnson looked over at Bill, “What happened, can you explain it?”

“Of course I can. It’s my son and his wife. They have the house now! I told you about this before I died but all of you arrogant spirits didn’t want to accept the facts. You didn’t listen to me.”

“We’ve got to get them out of here.” Lamont said, “They’ll screw everything up.” Everyone began talking at once, and Dr. Johnson let them rant for awhile. He took inventory of who was here.

Lamont had been a railroad man who had worked at the roundhouse years ago when the rails were a viable concern in town. In a tragic accident he had lost his leg to the steel wheel of a boxcar. By the time he got to Dr. Johnson’s he had lost too much blood and he bled out in the very room where they now met. For thirty years Dr. Johnson had run his practice from this old house. When he passed away; he stayed. It had been his home and he knew that other spirits lingered. All of them had passed in the house. Lamont, from blood loss; Elizabeth had expired during childbirth; she was still here, but the baby had moved on. Randall, Buck, Leticia, and Carrie Belle were here and so was Patsy. Bill was the latest. He had lived in the house until his death three years ago. He was still here though, he had loved the house too.

Buck finally appointed himself as spokesperson, “We need to scare them out,” he said. “We’re ghosts, this should be easy for us.”

“No way,” Bill interjected, “I won’t have any part of this. That’s my son and his family. I won’t let you do it.”

“Nobody asked you,” Buck shot back with a sneer, “we need to get them out!”

“My boy won’t scare easy.” Bill said.

“We have the squeak on the stairs. That’ll scare him,” said Buck.

Everybody laughed at that. “What’s so funny?” Buck asked as he looked at each of them in turn.

Leticia answered, “A squeak on the stairs? A squeak on the stairs? That’s not gonna scare anybody, Buck. I think we oughta just get used to them. I think we oughta make nice. Be friendly. Ya know?”

Bill pointed at Buck, “you go ahead and squeak the stairs if you want, but I agree with Leticia. We need to make nice. They’re family and I kinda like having them here.”

“Let’s take a vote,” Dr. Johnson’s commanding voice silenced everyone. “All in favour of trying to scare them off say ‘aye’.”

“’Aye’,” said Buck immediately.

“Yeah, I suppose I have to vote ‘aye’ too,” Lamont looked at the floor and raised his hand. The rest of the ghosts were silent.

“All in favour of making friends and coexisting?” the doctor asked.

Randall, Leticia, Carrie Belle, Patsy, and Bill all raised their hands. Dr. Johnson looked at them all and raised his hand too.

“So it’s decided then. Buck, you and Lamont need to sign up for this, are you on board with the program? Or will we be kicking you out instead?”

“I guess I’m OK with it as long as I don’t have to listen to that music those kids play all the time.” Lamont said.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah,” Buck grudgingly conceded.

“Meeting’s adjourned,” Dr. Johnson said, “Y’all all go downstairs and introduce yourselves.”


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