A Flash of Spectral Violence
I love writing fiction. I love the world of Ghost Punchers. So I’ve smashed these two loves together like a pair of Siamese twins joined at the fist in order to present a bit of ghost-punching flash fiction. If you enjoy it, please share it!
“I don’t know, Rachel. I mean, look at her.”
Doug kept his voice low as he nodded at the new girl Jackson had sent over. She was small—tiny, really—and young enough that she almost looked at home here in the abandoned high school. Large glasses, a pink backpack, and a studious ponytail completed her “serious student looking for extra credit” look. It didn’t help that she was flipping through a pile of water-logged textbooks and nodding silently at whatever she was reading.
Rachel shrugged. “Jackson vouched for her.”
“Jackson vouched for Andre, and look how that turned out.”
“True. That was… unfortunate. You want to call it off?”
Doug sighed and shook his head.
“Nah. We’ve got a job to do. If they’re going to start remodeling next week, we got to take care of that thing in the basement sooner rather than later.”
“Fine. I’ll talk to her. See where she’s coming from. She if she’s… like Andre.”
Rachel turned to the girl and waved.
“Danita? Could you come here a sec?”
“Yes, Ms. Boone.”
Rachel could feel Doug rolling his eyes.
“Please. Just call me Rachel.”
“Okay, Rachel. Are we ready to do this?”
The girl’s eyes shone behind her glasses. She practically vibrated with excitement.
“Yeah. In a minute. We were just wondering… How much experience have you had in the actual… you know… punching? I mean, Jackson says you’re an expert when it comes to like, lore and rituals and stuff, but… you know. The violence…?”
“This is my third mission. On my first, I helped take down a ghost clown. I was mostly back-up, but I got a few good licks in.” The girl pantomimed swinging punches.
“Last month, I fought a dog. I mean, okay, it was a ghost dog, and probably not really a dog at all, but a ghost manifested in the form of a dog. But I punched the heck out of it.”
“Was it a big dog?” asked Doug.
“Not really. Like a small husky, maybe? But it was fast. With sharp teeth.”
Rachel looked at Doug. Doug shrugged and nodded.
“Well, we’re glad you’ve had that experience. Because the ghost in the basement here is pretty tough. We’ve already tried to root it out once. It didn’t go well.”
“I got a concussion,” said Doug.
“So you need more muscle,” said Danita. “And that’s why Jackson brought me in.”
Rachel smiled. “Exactly.”
Danita looked around. She pointed at the back of the room, where a door and its frame were blackened from fire and smoke damage.
“Is that the basement down there?” she asked. “Can I take a look?”
Rachel said “Sure” before Doug could say “That’s a bad idea and we should all go together after we make a plan.” Danita strode to the door and threw it open. She stepped onto a landing and peered down into the darkness.
“I see it,” she said as Doug and Rachel joined her by the door. “It’s a big one. Did it die in the fire?”
“We think it started the fire,” said Doug. “It’s been here a long time.”
“Then it’s time for it to go,” said Danita as she skipped down the stairs.
Doug and Rachel looked at each other, their eyes wide.
“She’s not…?” they both asked.
But she was.
Danita hit the bottom of the stairs at a run. She charged the ghost (which sort of looked like a gorilla in a human suit with stop signs for hands) and leaped onto its back with a roar.
“You don’t belong here!” she shouted as she punched her fist through where the ghost’s spine would be, if it had had a spine. She grunted, then pulled something moist and wriggling out from deep within the beast’s ectoplasmic flesh.
The ghost screamed.
And then Danita really got to work.
Doug and Rachel stopped at the bottom of the stairs. Three times they started towards Danita and the ghost, but each time they stepped back, frozen by the waves of violence, viscera, and vibrantly obscene language washing over the scene before them.
When it was over, Danita straightened her ponytail and caught her breath. She smiled sheepishly.
“Sorry about all that. I just get carried away sometimes.”
“Uh huh,” said Doug.
“I’m calling Jackson,” said Rachel. “We’re keeping her.”