Well Met By Moonlight - Page 6

“Um . . .” my mouth started to stammer again, but this time my brain worked overtime to get it to shut up and say something sensible instead. “Is it too impolite to ask what you're doing hanging around here instead of floating around on some cloud or something?” I ventured.

“Because I didn't rate a cloud and I'm waiting for a place in a burning lake of fire to open up,” she replied, giving new meaning to the term “deadpan.” “You wouldn't believe the waiting list to get into Hell these days,” she added.

I just looked at her dumbfounded, prompting yet another round of her ethereal laughter.

“Really, Phillip!” she said in a playfully chastising tone. “Even a man who can only see ghosts when he's drunk enough shouldn't be that gullible.” I guess I looked so hurt by that, she must have decided to take pity on me. “But to answer your question . . .” She paused and glanced around. “In a sense, this park is Heaven for me; I had many fine times here.” Her smile became dazzling. “I still do, in fact.”

I nodded in a drunken parody of understanding. “Is that why you can't leave?”

“Who said I couldn't leave?” she wanted to know. “I just happen to like visiting here from time to time.” She looked at me coyly. “Sometimes I meet interesting men.”

“You're into tragedy, huh?” I asked sullenly.

“Phillip!” she said sharply. “I may not know you as well as I would like, but I really must tell you that self-pity isn't a look that suits you at all!” She wagged an admonishing finger at me.

“I'm drunk in public and pouring my soul out to a dead girl in the middle of the night,” I reminded her. “That makes this either a tragedy or a spoof, and . . .” I never managed to finish that thought though, because at that point, without any warning whatsoever, she reared her hand back and did her level best to slap me.

Her hand passed through me without effect, of course, except for the lingering impression of a slight chill. I looked at her in utter pop-eyed shock for a moment, then I chortled.

Page 6

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