Today, Elson Meehan, author of the scary short horror story, Black Habits and fellow contributor to Touched by Darkness tells us about a very strange encounter:
I used to live in Boston and on afternoons when the weather was good and I had time to spare, I would walk from the train station to my house.
In the spring of 2010, I was walking just so and feeling vaguely overheated when I came upon a rough-looking woman drinking beer on a stoop across from the package store. Her hair was auburn. Her jeans were weathered. Her sneakers were white. She probably could have used a better moisturizer, but winter had only just gone and maybe her skin was unusually sensitive to the dry cold. I didn't know. That wasn't really any of my business anyway.
She had a six-pack of beer beside her and she drank from a can that bore, in an inscrutable font, a proper noun. A place name, I wondered? Was it an American Indian tribe? I didn't know! I had seen this beer before in bars and since it was the cheapest beer, I usually wanted to order it, but I was a rube and I couldn't pronounce its name, so I never did; I didn't want to shame myself. As I continued walking, I tried not to stare too much at the woman with the beer. The sky was blue and bright, the air was clear, the zephyrs were gusting, and children were playing in the community recreation area next to the package store. I wished that I was drinking cheap beer on a stoop, and I thought to myself, in my head as I passed the woman: how do you even say that word?
“Nar-ra-gan-sett,” she shouted after me.
Oh my god, I thought, she read my brain! How did she know? Justifications for what had happened, both insipid and mundane, did occur to me, but I refused to accept that this moment was anything less than profound. Suddenly, I felt light-hearted. The clamminess about my person no longer troubled me. “Narragansett!” I repeated proudly. I smiled. I gave her two thumbs up. I was giddy. There was magic in the world again, and I was filled with wonder.
You can buy Black Habits as a standalone short story Here and you can find out more about Elson Meehan Here
Touched by Darkness is available from: