Tap-Tap, Ye Wraith Unnamed


Cue:  TAP


What the H..OTEL was that tap, tap-tapping—like something reminiscent of Poe??

One-day homeless had been sufficient to make her shake with muffled gibbering gratitude for this vacant and odorous apartment of a newly-deceased man of mystery (and no doubt, misery).

Landlord—vapid insecure woman, transparently lacking in credibility—had offered a first-month’s-rent discount for “as is” condition; meaning no cleaning had been done and maintenance requests were addressed without promise… Zinnia had been just desperate enough to enthuse:  “Sounds spectacular!”

She’d spent most of her check on industrial strength cleaners, and within 3 days the place appeared only half-shabby—much of the furnishings still looked and smelled dubious—maybe next month she could hit the thrift stores.

After popping a can of warm Coke, she wiped a smear of grease off the old TV and sat on a cushion she’d covered with her own laundered towel; exhausted, she’d doze off in a sec—but for that damn tap, tap-tapping…

It wasn’t rodents or roaches; didn’t seem to come from walls next to neighboring units; no faucet dripped, nor was it raining against windows; the chipped, indelibly stained toilet was silent…then she spied the antique music box.

© R L Cadillac, 2017 ~ All rights reserved.

Image ~ Pixabay

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29 thoughts on “Tap-Tap, Ye Wraith Unnamed

    • Thanks very much, Paul. Not that I went inside his place afterward, but I tapped into the memory of when my dear neighbor died a few years ago. Told that it was bad, it only increased my grief–I didn’t understand why he wasn’t answering my phone calls…

      Liked by 1 person

        • It was abrupt, and awful timing (December)–a shock, as I didn’t realize he was particularly ill. I always celebrated his birthday (Dec 10) with a baked treat…plus we’d just discussed that I would bake fruitcakes for Christmas, and bring him one. So not being able to reach him by phone, and seeing my bag of goodies still hanging on his doorknob…and then the parade of authority folks…and finally another neighbor called to tell me the news he knew would devastate me. It’s odd how we sometimes grieve harder for a “stranger” than estranged family… I miss him terribly, still think of him everyday–as I expected he’d be here as long as I… I do have the comfort of knowing he’s at peace in Heaven, keeping an eye on me–and we’ll surely be neighbors there again.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks much–we’ll see how long it goes…I do enjoy serials. Did I forget to mention that Frank and Stella are on hiatus?? They’d send a post card but they’re having too much fun–a 2nd honeymoon.


  1. I’m enthralled with your writing. I’ve enjoyed reading all that you have written these weeks. The warm can of coke added so much to the story, amazingly, for me. The reality to the supernatural, maybe.


  2. That smell RL. It never leaves you. The undertakers use to give us peppermint cream to put in our nostrils and now I can’t stand the smell of peppermint. Excellent piece of writing.


  3. A definite contrast from Frank and Stella, and it just shows us all the more what great writing skills you have! This was so descriptive, I could feel the apartment, and how it wasn’t really great even after she had cleaned it. And then there was that tapping… I hope you will continue it on!!


  4. damn!*
    I like the detail and description.
    IN my writing, I’m almost at the point of being able to take what I do usually do, (which is paint the picture, the scene, the ‘visual’) and give it it that extra magic twist that transforms it into ‘show’. Information becomes transparent and a part of the narrative.
    cool, thanks

    *compliment of the highest and simplest order**
    ** ‘though, admittedly, some context to connect the invective with the appreciated wouldn’t hurt…lol


      • nothing necessary on the part of your story needs clarification. the second asterix was an example of my unfortunate tendency to (attempt) to gild the silk purse… in that I was (attempting to) make fun of my use of the single, ‘damn’ as a compliment.
        Your stories are (for me) the most accessible (and therefore beneficial) of lessons on writing. This enhances my enjoyment of the both the writing and reading of our Sixes each week.


        • Wow, that’s high praise indeed, Sir–I humbly thank you. If nothing else besides the FUN of writing the 6’s–readers have convinced me I’m not a half-bad writer, and that may bode well for my future. So, for that, I thank you again–you’ve made my week. See you next time when we return to the dead man’s apartment…and that curious antique music box… (unless of course, Frank and Stella return from their 2nd honeymoon with more tales of domestic this ‘n that…) 🙂 Be well, be blessed.


  5. The first place my mind went with the cue “tap” was to Poe, of course. Had to fight hard not to drag my six there. I love your title best this week, for sure, and the story is great as well. I think I love the detail of the popping can of Coke most – a great subtle nuance that really paints an image.


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