“What a dump,” Nick snorted as he gazed up at the dilapidated structure.
“Glad you think so,” Christopher replied, sarcasm edging into his voice. They got out of the car for a closer look.
Nick shoved his hands into the pockets of his varsity letter jacket and glanced at his companion. “Creepy old place; you’d probably feel right at home here.”
“Sure, make fun of the goth,” Christopher shot back, his mouth twisting in a sardonic smile. “You jocks are so predictable.”
“Chill out,” Nick said defensively. “Let’s go in and check everything out. We can’t use it for the fraternity haunted house if we don’t make sure it’s structurally sound first.”
The front door shrieked as if in protest as the pair pushed it open and cautiously stepped inside. Nick paused but Christopher immediately disappeared into what was once the living room. The windows were boarded over, and the meager rays of light that glimmered through the
cracks in the plaster waned as moving clouds obscured the sun.
The floor creaked as Nick stepped gingerly into the darkened room.
“This place is almost a perfect,” Christopher’s voice seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere. “We just need a lost spirit trapped inside its’ walls to make it authentic.”
“You mean like a ghost?” Nick asked.
“Precisely,” Christopher agreed. “Preferably the victim of a violent crime.” His fingers found the switchblade in the pocket of his black trench coat.
Nick froze and listened intently. He heard the sound too late.
First published in the May 2008 issue of Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. (The Story That Won)