Ghost Story (A Newt Run Module)
By Chad Inglis
Copyright 2012 Chad Inglis
The second night I was back in town I got filthy drunk with a few friends at the local down on 4th Bridge. I was in no shape to drive and I wasn't about to wait in the cold, piss drunk, for a bus, so I asked Mark if I could crash at his place, which was only a few blocks away. At that time he was still living with his parents (something he had a long and increasingly ludicrous explanation for, but which boiled down to the fact that he'd quit his job and was broke.) He said it was fine as long as we didn't wake anyone up and we waved off the rest of our friends and started out. It was snowing, a white/black blur that covered over everything, the street and us in it, and anything the two of us might have said to each other. Nothing else is clear until we reached his door and got inside. Then Mark pointed to a couch in the living room and went to bed. I don't even remember lying down.
It was the shouting that woke me up, wrenching me into a momentary panic of where I was and what the fuck was going on. At first I thought someone had been killed, but then I realized it was just Mark's parents getting a head start on the day's arguments. I've known Mark a lot of years, and his parents have been fighting since we were kids, but the big, irrevocable blow-out had yet to occur and the much talked about divorce was still pending. Anything could set them off, from geo-politics to the type of shampoo they used in the house, but regardless of the topic their arguments were always essentially the same: abstract and semantic in the way of highly academic people who have no idea how fragile and twisted their own self-images are (they were both PhDs at NRU, in political science I think, or maybe literature.)