A bunch of us had decided to go on a short trip for the weekend. The house we rented seemed to be at the edge of the world, overlooking the lake and mountains, with nothing but the cacophony of insects and birds to disrupt the serenity. Perfect for a weekend of crazy drinking, dancing and fun, amirite?
The thing about swings is, you are never immune to their attraction, whether you’re six or sixty. Well, this house had three; one on the spacious upper floor balcony that overlooked the garden and the other two, side by side, on the front porch, exactly below the balcony. I spent a major part of the day fixating on one of the front porch swings, at the cost of avoiding human interaction. (Blame the Piscean traits).
Night dawned on us and we were in a trance….mostly because the alcohol was starting to take effect. A few moments ago we were all huddled together on the balcony, drinking our livers out and dancing like there was no tomorrow (Actually, there was. We would end up doing the same thing the next night.) Slowly, people were starting to disperse for reasons beyond my intoxicated comprehension.
I was bored, and moreover, the swing beckoned. Now normally, I would very responsibly inform someone about my whereabouts before leaving, but that sly Old Monk had clouded my judgment. I stumbled downstairs to the front porch, and there it was… SWING!
Upstairs, one of my friends was about to puke his guts out right off of the balcony. One of the other friends was trying to help him, making sure he was okay, when suddenly, she heard someone singing… a beautiful voice…
Despite all the ruckus being made, it was still an eerie place and that haunting, disembodied voice made it worse. She turned around, trying to ascertain if any of the others were singing. They weren’t. More puking… more of that beautiful voice…
The fog hung low in the chilly night air, and made her shiver to the bone. There were doubts ever since we had set foot in this house (beautiful house, cheap rent.. doesn’t add up, right?) What if it was haunted? What if there was a lady in white, holding a candle, and singing laments while she roamed the grounds? What if—
“What the hell? Why are you puking off the balcony?” I looked up and screamed at my sloshed friend, as I stood inches away from the mess he had made. Mr. Puke-A-Lot was in no condition to answer. My spooked friend, on the other hand, screamed at me.
“Hey! Wha—How did you get down there? Oh God, please tell me you heard it too? Please please!”
“Damn right I heard! I think he woke up the entire village with all the noise he’s making!”
My friend seemed confused. “Huh? Not him! That voice! I heard someone sing.. a lady! You guys were right… this house is haunted!”
I didn’t believe in ghosts. But isn’t this how horror movies start off? My brain was split into two TV screens: one playing Supernatural and the other, Scooby Doo. Suddenly it hit me.
I began laughing uncontrollably (I would ROFL but there was vomit all around). The rest of the gang appeared at the balcony too. They had noticed my absence before but assumed that I had gone to bed. Surprised to find me downstairs, one of them asked what was so funny.
“I don’t know! I told her I heard some scary ghost woman’s voice singing here and… I think.. I think she’s in shock… maybe she saw her?”
I was still trying to control my hysteria while the others were mostly ‘WTF’ing. Finally, I decided to have mercy.
“It was me! I am your ‘beautiful voice’! Don’t know much about ‘haunting’ though, but thanks for the compliment!”
Everyone knew of my obsession with singing. I would sing while walking, driving, working, listening to music, basically all the time. Tonight, particularly, the alcohol + altitude (swing) had made me less inhibited. I was singing my heart away, oblivious to my surroundings! Little did I know what effect my voice had had on my clueless friend!
I recall the laughter not stopping for a very long time. And that wasn’t just me! The rest of the weekend, I kept away from the swing and did exactly what I had gone there with my friends to do. There were plenty of jokes about ‘the beautiful voice’ and the house being haunted.
Some might find it odd that on the day we were about to leave, we woke up to find one of the swings on the front porch broken down. The one that no one had sat on, the one that was untouched…
In response to The Daily Post’s prompt: Voice