Someone burned down the old prison Syobai was sent to nearly two decades ago now, he learns through the verbal telephone line that runs through the small neighborhood he lives in, and even though he believes it when he hears it, he still wants to see the institution's resting place himself. So he gets up and goes, early in the morning on a Wednesday while the fog is still settled over the country, to see what's become of that old place.
It's not that he cares about the place itself. It's a prison. He couldn't care less what happens to it, or any of the people who reside or have resided inside of it. One less prison in the world is a good thing for Syobai, even if he no longer carries on the same line of work which had him sent there to begin with. And it's not like Syobai's a hugely sentimental person, either.
None of that contributes to the reason why he's going to see it. He's just wondering if the old ghosts are still there.
It's a story and a fact that Syobai has kept to himself all these years, the knowledge of the old ghosts who used that prison as their otherworldly territory. Prisons serve as very good places for ghosts to carry out their business, so he learned from one of the oldest ones while he was there. People are more likely to turn a blind eye to whatever it is they want to do.
And, in Syobai's case, though he never turned a blind eye, he also didn't say anything about it.
*"I don't want to ask for too much," Syobai remembers one of them telling him as he lie awake at night, unable to sleep, "But could you please not tell anyone we're here? It's not likely that they'll believe you, anyway, but we can't go taking any chances here. An exorcism would be terrible for us and our reputation, after all."*
Syobai looks out across the rubble and remains of what once was, of the prison which once claimed ownership over him, and he finds the thoughts of those old ghosts returning and circling around his head like a murder of crows.
He scratches at his chin and gives a heavy sigh. It's not really that important, he thinks, if they're still here or not. They probably left a long time ago, anyway. The prison itself hasn't been operational in years. There haven't been any living people calling this place home for a very long time.
At some point, Syobai moves in order to push himself up, to forcibly remove himself from the area before he can allow it to cloud his thoughts or judgements any further, and only in that moment does he realize he hasn't been alone this whole time.
A pair of eyes watches him from behind a boulder.
Syobai meets its gaze in a challenge, and this seems to frighten the young ghost, sending it scurrying in the opposite direction and further behind the boulder, out of sight. He huffs a little -- whether out of amusement or irritation, that is unclear -- and shrugs his shoulders, moving from his knees to his feet now that it has gone.
The following challenges were completed during the writing exercise:
Begin Start typing to begin
Location A prison
Words Reach 50 words
Words Reach 100 words
Words Reach 200 words
Event Your character sees a ghost
Words Reach 300 words
Sentence "I don't want to ask for too much."
Letter Use the letter F
Words Reach 400 words
Words Reach 500 words
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