Conversations with a Dead Brother

Everything’s chaotic and I’m moving tomorrow, so have an excerpt from a random thing I wrote the other day! It’s not affiliated with any story in particular, but it was inspired by my ongoing 100-baby challenge in which I accidentally fatally sunburned a vampire son. Oops. 

It was a few days back at home when I woke up in the middle of the night, the unshakable feeling that someone was there hovering over my bed. I sat up, blinked a few times, and reached for my glasses. 

“You must be my little sister.” 

I jumped. I may have suspected something, but there was nothing like the sudden, undeniable sight of my dead brother sitting in front of me. “Um… hi?”

He sat, cross-legged on the end of my bed. “You’re sleeping in my bed, you know.” 

I coughed. “That really doesn’t make me feel that great about being home.” 

A shrug. He stuck out his hand. “We’ve never met. I’m Astur.” 

“Astur. I’m Ira.” His hand was hardly substantial, cold but not clammy. “You knew about me.” 

Astur shrugged again. “Just because you’re away at school all the time doesn’t mean that Mam doesn’t talk about you and the other siblings. I hear stories.” He had a strong Irish brogue and I remembered, suddenly, that Mom had spent some time there. It must have been where he died. 

I swallowed. “How does the age thing work? Like, once you’re dead and all.” 

He grimaced. “True. Technically, you’re my big sister now.” 

“You’re seventeen. I’m eighteen. That’s… weird.” 

Astur sighed. “You don’t know how much time- and money- we spent trying to reverse it. There are ways, you know, but they cost so much and there’s no guarantee that they’ll work.” He was living- or rather, non-living- proof of that. “I wanted to move out. Grow up with Alaric and Alder.” His triplet brothers. 

“I’m sorry.” I leaned back against my headboard. “Have you met the others yet?” 

“The current brood?” Astur smiled. “Tomas and I chatted awhile the other day. Holly is convinced she’s hallucinating. And the younger twins… well, they’re too young for me to do more than frighten them. It’s rather unfortunate, being dead.”

“And Mom?” 

His face fell. “She knows I’m around. Sometimes… sometimes I need something more substantial to inhabit. Avoid getting sucked back into the void. But I break things when I do that.” 

Realization dawned on me. “You’re the curse I keep hearing about.” 

“Hol told you that?” He chuckled dryly. “Yeah. I don’t mean to, but it happens. And Mam doesn’t like it, but she knows why.”

Obviously rough but it’s a thing! And I love the idea of a ghostly brother just hanging around years after death. Hope you enjoyed, because I’m back to packing! 🙂 


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