What Mike Wrote (Ginger Man 12F)

Rune took the notebook from Charlie, and clutching its sides with both hands drew it to his face as he read:

GINGER MAN

A Ginger Man is the spirit of a person whose life has been unhappy. Unlike a Ghost, though, there is nothing a Ginger Man can do to make up for life’s miseries. Therefore, this spirit haunts the living for the sole purpose of making others — especially those closest to the person when living — as miserable as possible.

The body of a Ginger Man is dead, and is animated by the dead person’s spirit. But they are not like Zombies, because they can’t be controlled by another person. Ginger Men do not seek to do physical harm, unless they are threatened. They rely rather on scarring and harassing their victims. Acts of vandalism and theft are common among Ginger Men.

A Ginger Man’s greatest weapons are stealth and surprise, and their greatest fear is that they will be discovered. If seen by a living person, a Ginger Man will capture them before they can tell anyone else. The Ginger Man will ask the captured person a question. If this question is not answered correctly, the person will be killed; but if the captured person answer’s the Ginger Man’s question correctly, the Ginger Man’s spirit will be released from its misery.

Rune lowered the notebook onto the green Formica table as he looked up at Charlie, who was studying his face intently, his hands folded on the table in front of him. Rune tapped the notebook page. “You said Mike wrote this?” Charlie nodded. “Hmm.” Rune rubbed his clean-shaven chin, then nodded. “You know, I might just know where he got this from. Excuse me a minute?”

“Sure.” Charlie felt he had no choice but to walk down the path where this boy was taking him. Rune shifted his weight on the metal chair, which skrinched along the tiled floor of the Pizza Place, and took his smartphone from his pocket.

Their waitress came back with their pizza. Charlie placed a slice on two plates, handed one over to Rune, who was far too busy tapping on and reading his smartphone to notice. “Mind if I get started?” Seeing that Rune was ignoring him, Charlie started eating, and was half-way done with his slice when Rune looked up at him.

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