Dr. 14

I wrote this for the paranormal evening that I performed at last week. Here it is for you to read, yes, personal state of mind peers into the frame.

There I was with the renowned ghost hunter Dr. 14. They call him Dr. 14 because he goes one better than 13. Ever go to the 14th floor of an elevator? The people on that floor have a mix of smugness and dread. They’re not 13 but they are. One better.
Dr. 14 and I were on a mission on his floor. He runs all the 14th floors. Not a spiritual advisor. A doctor. A PhD in BOO! Stethoscope to the astral plane. He’s rational.
In fact, when I said, “Look up ahead, Doctor! Follow my nose, it always knows! …Why, I see floating just yonder, yes, it’s ectoplasm! I just know it is!”
He replied, “Dearrrrr boy, that is most certainly not ectoplasm. It’s snot.”
“Snot? Then do you know what that means, Dr. 14? This entire floor is operating as an open system of decongestant! The 14th floor is a sense of release! This is a perfect opportunity to get something off my chest! I have a ghost story that I have been meaning to discuss with you, Dr. 14, but it’s not of the kind you might think. I mean, oh sure, I thought I saw ghosts in the past. I’ve had visions of witch burnings while at a Christian camp. The counselor with the wooden cross necklace even purified the cabin in the name of Jesus Christ for me. I was 13? 14? Ha ha.
But this one’s not like that.”
“No. Nor is it about how around the same period while lying in my bed at home I saw a visage pass by my door. A nurse visage dressed in a classic nurse uniform- not like the kind of uniform that my graveyard shift working Mom wore. My mother was a nurse. My Aunt Molly was very religious. She died. We inherited her collectible plate of the Last Supper. The plate broke days before I saw the ghostly night nurse. Midnight nurse. 2 hours later. 14 O’Clock. Was the nurse a sign? What to do? Don’t throw out the broken pieces of the Last supper plate. Put them in a box and save them forever or a long time. That way nothing bad will happen.
No, my ghost story’s not about that.”
“No. I don’t want to tell you those kinds of ghost stories, Dr. 14. I want to tell you a personal ghost story. I mean, a story about personal ghosts. Like, how when my love calls me and she’s all happy to talk to me, missing and loving me so much. And I feel so sad and distant. Not like when we were together. But now we’re not. In the here and now, we’re not. She’s a ghost now, she’s not tangible. And she tells me about the job she just landed and her plans with the job for the next eight years on the other side of the country, it’s a big country, vast. I know it’s over. Truly over. I’m supposed to be happy for her landing that job. But she’s gone. A ghost. She moved away from the city we moved to. We discovered the city together and now I am alone in it. Luckily we never lived together because then she'd be more of a ghost in the home. She stayed over a lot and now I wake up alone. Like a ghost in reverse: her side of the bed is no longer sunken in. But I get reminders of places and details: ghosts. I didn’t think this would happen, She’s my greatest love. It’s out of our hands. She’s a ghost. And I have to let go. I guess. Do I? I don’t want to. But it’s painful. This ghost hurts. What should I do, Doc?”
“Those aren’t the kinds of ghosts I hunt, dear boy. You’re on your own. Hand me that flashlight. I need illumination.”
“Uhhh, you’re already holding it, Doc.”
“Right, right.”

Since memory held no weight in Dr. 14’s rule books, we found absolutely nothing that mission.