Ghosts of Old Chicago

It’s that time of week again–time for Friday Fictioneers on Wednesday. (The prompt shows up early Wednesday morning, and we have the rest of the week to respond with our 100-word stories.) This week’s prompt is courtesy of yours truly, a photo taken from the sky deck of the historic Inn of Chicago. My accompanying story weighs in at exactly 100 words.

2016 04 01 Marie Gail

Copyright Marie Gail Stratford

Ghosts of Old Chicago

“Haunted by mobsters or ghosts from my high school days—pick one.”

“I’d rather attend the symphony in peace.”

“We have to spend the night somewhere. The Congress or the Marriott?”

“Tell me about these high school friends of yours haunting the Marriott.”

“Stereotypes from the early ‘90s mostly. Cheerleaders with cute names. Wannabe football players from rival high schools threatening one another in the lobby.”

“Anyone you had sex with?”

“Well, I was 17—but no. None of them were that lucky.”

“Then I vote for the Congress. The ghost of Al Capone could use a good ass kicking.”


Apparently, Al Capone has a full staff of spectres working alongside him at the Congress Plaza Hotel. You can read more here.

The Afterlife of Slaves

This is my response to the Friday Fictioneers prompt for February 13. The challenge is to write a 100-word story inspired by the photo prompt. Play along by writing your own, reading others and/or commenting on the flashes we fictioneers create. The photo prompt this week comes from Melanie Greenwood. My story this week weighs in at 98 words.

Copyright Rochelle Fields

Copyright Rochelle Fields

Ghosts live in the bayou. Along the shores of the swamp, you can hear them moaning in the cypress trees.

Our house sits high on a hill, away from the waters of the swamp and the frightening sounds of the bayou. It’s an old house with a long history. In the day, it is the picture of southern charm. At night, it becomes quite another thing. House ghosts come out of the walls. Silent, unlike their bayou counterparts, they wander the halls, peer into cupboards and closets, seeking what cannot be found—relief from guilt, freedom from revenge.

Author’s note: This week’s prompt proved challenging to me, and I’m not particularly happy with the story yet. But the story did remind me of the great verandas so prevalent across Louisiana. Here’s a link to the true story that inspired this one: