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The House|| #STB Coffee Prompt Week 68


marlyncabrera1.9 K17 days agoPeakD6 min read

Hi, coffee lovers!

I hope you're having a good week and good coffee. How about spilling some beans!

A wealthy man puts an ad in the paper regarding a mansion of his that has long been rumored to be haunted. He says that anyone who can stay in the house for a week will win a lifetime supply of coffee from his popular company. Do you respond to the ad?

You can join in here.

The House


I knew something was moving in the background, creeping in the edge of the shadows, just outside the areas where the few warm lights of the house reached. I saw it out of the corner of my eye, and it... Sorry, she. She moved only the necessary to remain at that edge where I could perceive its presence without being able to specify what that specter was: human? beast? Was it even a specter or was she still alive? Whatever my mother had become after she passed thirty years ago, I sensed it tangible. Every time it approached, I could perceive a faint aroma of jasmine and coffee, like someone had just ground fresh beans. Unmistakably, it was her. It wasn't an it but a she. I managed to make us some coffee and she finally let me see her spectral, slender figure.


My mother couldn't bear that young Alberto rejected her, denying that the child she was expecting was his. Denied by my own father, I grew in the area of that mansion which housed the workers; a separate building with a a large kitchen and a dining room with fifty seats. Day after day, my mother worked in the mill at the back; she whithered and aged so fast that it seemed supernatural. She died young when I was ten; my aunt had to take care of me. She and my mom were the town witches and both worked at the mill.

Whenever I looked into my mom's eyes and she told me that I was the first son of Alberto Romano, heir to everything, I thought she was crazy and just wanted to grow up and get out of there.

Until thirty years ago, the workers had an entrance at the back of the house. There was a lot of movement on that street; now it was lonely. Only a few stray cats came in and out of there.

Some houses seem to have a life of their own; when we live in them, we get used to the creaking of their old bones, to their groaning on a cold night, but not so to the beasts and the wild nature that settles in and grows when they have been abandoned. Resentment grows like weeds, and in some cases a sick spirit of lovelessness is born and wants revenge. It's been three years since Mr. Alberto died, demented, alone and broken, forgotten by the many children to whom he never gave a penny or a blessing. He was a womanizer splendid with his many mistresses, only until they became pregnant. Old Alberto had it coming.

I was telling my mother all of this, which she seemed to have forgotten. So it seems ghosts can also be out of their minds. She hadn't touched her cup. And I was really hoping she would because she looked so real. After I was sure I had caught her attention, I explained to her why I was there. She listened to me as attentively as I never did.

When Old Alberto Romano died without an heir, Ernesto Fuentes, a young businessman who had business dealings with the regime, had an idea. After a series of legal tricks and an auction that no one saw, he bought the house and the debt of the coffee mill that was in it for a ridiculously small sum. He intended to revive the business and make good money. But before he could attempt anything, he had to expel whatever had possessed the house many years ago, the same entity that allegedly had turned the sweet young man Alberto had once been into an infamous man. That thing had killed Alberto's parents and anyone who dared to spend the night there, people said. Eventually, no worker wanted to go there anymore and little by little, the mill stopped working and old Alberto had to sell the coffee from his fields to other companies at a very cheap price. He had begun to die even before he turned ill and mad.

Now Ernesto Fuentes offered that anyone who could stay in the house for a week would win "a lifetime supply of coffee from his popular company."

Certainly, I was quick to respond to the ad in the newspaper, but not so much because of the prize, but because I had a deep intuition about what was inside the house.

As soon as I was done talking, my mother gave me that look when she wanted me to know that everything would be okay and rested her cold hand on my cheek. Then she got up and I lost sight of her; I listened to the sounds of stones and metal.

In a couple of minutes, she was back, her hands full of dirt and a straw baby wrapped in a white rag stained with mud and what looked like dried blood. She brought it in front of me and tore it up. It's over, I heard.

Immediately after that, the light bulbs went on and the smell of jasmine disappeared all of a sudden.

Only a faint smell of coffee remained and my astonishment to see my mother's cup empty and placed on the half wall behind which she'd stopped to say goodbye before vanishing.



All text and images are my own. I have taken the pictures with my Redmi 9T cell phone. And if any GIFs here, I've used GIPHY for all them.


Thank you so much for your visit :)


Banner by @andresromero 🖤



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