As a firm believer in the existence of ghostly presences, Dean regularly combed the press for the most haunted house, inn or abbey in order to go off for a weekend searching for spooks. On his return he regaled anyone prepared to listen with what his partner, Mandy, called his ectoplasmic claptrap.
Sadly for her the most haunted castle in the country was only a short distance away and, as he had saved this one up for his birthday treat, she was obliged to agree to stay a night in a bedroom there and join a group of enthusiasts who were hoping for a spine-tingling evening with the paranormal.
With the equipment for the detective work set up, a nervous looking group were given a tour, which described historic sightings through the centuries of an ill-fated Jacobean lady in white. Later, all assembled in the stone staircase, they were told to take care, as spirits can attach themselves to individuals. Ridiculous, thought Mandy, just wanting to get the evening over with. A tense half hour followed as ears pricked up and goosebumps raged every time there was a creak from the Victorian heating pipes or a whisper of wind that posed as the rustle of a silk dress. Soon anticipation turned to boredom as the EMF meter failed to register a single change in electromagnetic energy.
It was hard to relax in the chilly, dismal bedroom but, with no roaming ghouls showing up in the moonlight, Mandy, and eventually even Dean, who had initially been on high alert, did manage to sleep.
Mandy was glad to leave behind the dusty tapestries and dark velvet drapes and refused to battle with the temperamental plumbing in the accommodation’s facilities. It was a relief to be back in their ultra-modern apartment, where she was looking forward to luxuriating in a warm power shower.
Entering the bathroom and switching on the bright LED lights, she looked over to the mirror and screamed. Staring back at her was the pale drawn face and dishevelled platinum blond locks of a woman in white.