Scarlett could not stop shaking. She paced the living room, wringing her hands together and mumbling that she was not crazy under her breath. Her mind raced and she ignored the distant sounds of Greyson in the kitchen. Every time she blinked, she saw the child’s footprint. It had been there right next to her own! And there had been no mistaking it.
She flashed back to an hour ago, but could barely remember Greyson helping her out of the attic and back to their apartment. He had left her sitting on the sofa, but she could not keep still. Had he seen the footprint? What did he think?
She paused and looked through the dining room to the kitchen. Greyson was rattling mugs and the kettle was boiling. Scarlett sank onto the sofa and took off her shoes. She rubbed her ankles and tried to get a hold of herself. Tea would help she decided. Glancing over her shoulder and into the joining rooms again, she spotted Greyson.
‘Here. You’ll feel better after this,’ he called over.
Scarlett nodded, not trusting herself to speak.
He came into the living room, placed the mugs down and sat on the sofa next to her. He gave her a pink mug then picked up his own green one. Silence crept between them and the manor settled with soft creaking sounds.
‘We’re not going up there again, okay?’ Greyson spoke.
‘You saw it, right?’ Scarlett muttered.
‘No…You were too busy freaking out.’
‘There was a footprint on the floor. Right by the window,’ Scarlett stated.
‘The police or someone else made it. It was natural, like everything else. You’re worrying me, Scarlett. All this is going to your head! I knew it was stressing you, but we were dealing with it…Maybe you need to see someone?’
Scarlett sighed and looked into her tea. She dropped her shoulders and took a deep shaky breath. Her head swirled with everything and she waited for Greyson to go on. When he didn’t, she looked at him. He was staring off at the blank TV screen, his expression full of concern and slight puzzlement.
‘Maybe, I should,’ Scarlett said softly.
Greyson rubbed his head then swept his hair back, ‘you like it here don’t you? I know, it wasn’t what we wanted and I get it’s a big project and business….but Scarlett, it’s okay if you’ve changed your mind. I just need to know and I’d rather you admitted that then carried on with this…this….I don’t know…ghost thing.’
Scarlett sipped her tea and felt it burn her tongue. She swallowed and drink some more anyway. She didn’t know what to say. A fog had settled into her head and mouth felt thick with things she want to say, but could not voice.
‘Or is something else the matter?’ Greyson pressed.
She shook her head and drank more of her tea. Her tongue was becoming numb with the hot liquid. Avoiding, Greyson’s staring eyes, she looked around the room as if looking for something.
‘You’ve never been able not to tell me something before,’ Greyson said sadly.
‘It’s not that,’ Scarlett burst out, ‘nothing is wrong. It’s just the stress and the tiredness. Maybe we need to get out of here for a few days.’
‘We have so much to do though…’
‘I know, but maybe we could go into the villages and speak to people. Word of mouth and all that…and we can look at getting some advertising and recruiting going. I’d feel better if we had some staff, you know? And we need to get the fountains sorted and the gardens,’ Scarlett abruptly stopped and looked at Greyson.
A hint of a smile was on his lips and he was looking calmer.
‘What?’ she asked.
‘There’s my kitten.’
She laughed and Greyson lend in for a kiss. His lips brushed her’s and Scarlett pressed harder against him. She raised her hand and put it to his warm cheek. Greyson broke off and took the mug from her hand. Put it on the table, he wrapped his arms around her and pulled her in. Giggling, Scarlett climbed into his lap and kissed him again.
‘Let’s go to bed,’ Greyson said huskily.
‘Okay,’ Scarlett breathed.
She got off his lap and walked to the bedroom. Greyson came up behind her and she quickly avoided his wandering hands and tumbled into the room. Laughing, she scrambled onto the bed and grabbed a pillow. Greyson dodged her bad throw and tackled her. Scarlett cried out in delight and sprawled across the bed.
‘Feeling better?’ Greyson asked.
Scarlett nodded and wrapped her arms around him. She kissed him hard and felt everything slipping away.
Later, as she dozed, she tried to stop her mind reflecting on events. Snuggling closer to Greyson, she glanced at the foot of the bed and saw a grey mist ball shape. Scarlett tried not to take her eyes off it and to work out the shape of it. However, it vanished. Shutting her eyes, she tried to sleep.
A door slammed somewhere, shattering the silence. The noise vibrated through the manor and caused both Scarlett and Greyson to jump up. The security alarm broke in, blasting noise and deafening everything else.
To Be Continued…