Life had not turned out as Margot expected. She’d lost everything in a gas explosion whilst away from home at a work conference.

Her arms ached to hold her child again, but all she had left of Jamie was a memory. He’d only been six years old, his whole life snatched away in the blink of an eye, leaving her a hollowed out, empty shell. She missed Michael too.

Now she was the resident housekeeper / manager at an old orphanage that was being renovated into a hotel.

She didn’t like the dormitory, with its steel-framed beds in regimental lines down the walls, finding it chilly and damp despite the warm summer sunshine outside. Often feeling like she was being watched, she’d think she saw a small boy out of the corner of her eye but when she looked up, there was no one there.

On a few occasions at night she thought there was someone in the bedroom with her and in the morning there were wet marks on the floorboards that looked like a child’s footprints. She’d sometimes hear a child’s voice on the edge of her dreams but would jerk awake to an empty room, convinced it was just imagination.

One night, as she drifted to sleep, she felt a small, cold hand slip into hers and a small voice said, “Mummy, come and play.” She bolted upright in bed, clutching her hand to her heart and in the light of the moon through the window, saw a small boy at the side of her bed. She felt compelled to follow him and allowed him to take her hand again, pulling her out of the room, down the staircase and out into the garden.

The next morning she was found by the workmen, floating in the lake. It was presumed that she’d taken her own life because of her grief. 

No one knew about the small boy who had drowned there during the war. No one saw him playing with his new mother in the old dormitory. They’d both been alone, but now found solace in one another—forever.

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    Marianna Pieterse
    Marianna Pieterse(@marianna-pieterse)
    11 months ago

    Such a bitter-sweet story, Carrie. I love the idea of them playing together. It painted such a happy scene in such grim circumstances. Great story.

    Lotchie Carmelo
    Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
    11 months ago

    It is another bittersweet tale, Carrie. I could clearly feel the grief, sadness, desperation, and longing of a mother for her child. How sad. My tears are falling. Well done, Carrie. 

    Margarida Brei
    Margarida Brei(@margarida-brei)
    11 months ago

    Truly a sad story – loss of home, son and everything held dear. Love your descriptions of the protagonist “seeing” and dreaming of a small boy. They left me wondering if he is her son. I hope that she can meet up with family in the afterlife.

    Greene M Wills
    Greene M Wills(@greene-m-wills)
    11 months ago

    I am still shivering, Carrie!! A scary story with a strangely inevitable happy ending, in a way. So much to love in it!

    Thompson Emate
    Thompson Emate(@thompson-emate)
    11 months ago

    My goodness, Carrie, this is spooky supreme. Oh! The end is so sad. I’d rather she was still alive and moved on.

    Linda Rock
    Linda Rock(@linda-rock)
    11 months ago

    A motherless child and a childless mother, is there anything sadder? The little boy wanting his mummy, went straight to my heart and you describe so well the desolation felt by Margo. Although the ending is tragic, there is also comfort in that they found each other. An extremely poignant story, Carrie.

    Emily O'Leary
    Emily O'Leary(@emily-oleary)
    11 months ago

    Such a bittersweet story! It’s awful and yet so heartwarming, despite the circumstances. Very beautifully written, it sets a creepy atmosphere and pulls at the heartstrings!

    allinonefitness steven jenkins
    allinonefitness steven jenkins(@allinonefitness-steven-jenkins)
    11 months ago

    Easily my favourite. Very creepy  ? 

    Heather Chrzanowski
    Heather Chrzanowski(@heather-chrzanowski)
    11 months ago

    I like how the ghost boy adopted the woman as his “new mother.” I can imagine that orphanages can be quite sad and dreary places. Perfect setting for a ghost tale!

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