This is a short passage from my work in progress. It’s a ghost story which is split into the present and extracts from a part written novel. The writer died at the same time as the main protagonist, Emily, was born. This is taken from the novel which Emily is reading from an old manuscript given to her earlier. The child also called Emily is the heroine of the novel and is trapped and frightened. She is remembering something that happened when she was very young. I have had to take a few bits out to fall within the word count.
…A faint wailing was coming from the well and was carried on the wind as if the fairies were taking its breath and sucking it away. Her mother ran to the well and called, ‘Is there anyone there?’
It was four hours before the fire brigade pulled him out, a small boy, wet, bedraggled, lifeless. He had fallen halfway and clung to a branch for as long as he could. The well was only about 15 foot deep they said.
‘But if you dropped a stone you couldn’t hear it when it hit the water, it was so deep?’ her mother asked.
‘Just an old wives tale,’ they muttered, ‘just an old wives tale.’
Emily cried for the boy for the first time in ten years. She remembered when they brought him out. She remembered the wet hair and the dirty face and his little battered and bruised arms hanging by his sides.
The fireman was crying. ‘I’m so sorry,’ was all he could say.
Emily sobbed. She sobbed for the boy and his parents and for her own mother, who she couldn’t find.
‘Where are you mummy?’ and she sobbed for herself, alone and afraid of the dark.