It’s midnight. The lit candle breaks the darkness, illuminating the offerings: sweets, bread, plain water, fruits, coffee, mezcal. The deceased’s favourite food and drink.
She, accustomed to the paranormal, is no longer frightened by the nocturnal screams, nor the shadows, the knocks on the door at dawn, or the steps that always stop at the foot of her window, while the stray dogs bark at nothingness.
Sitting at the table, next to the window where she can see the cemetery that always gives her spectral experiences, she concentrates on the three colours of the candle´s flame, blue, yellow, shades from pink to red. Before the portrait of her loved one, she begins praying to invoke him. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us … She says in her prayer and with it attracts the longed-for spectre.
It´s the soul of her husband who just a few months ago left this world, she feels a sudden change in the course of her sorrow. The footsteps stop at the foot of the window of the home they shared in the past. Steps that were attracted by the perfume of the marigold flowers, the prayer, and the fire of the flame.
A chill runs down from her back to her tailbone. The woman begins hearing sounds, footsteps. Tingling hands. Bristling skin. Her teeth chattering. Impalpable phalanxes knock on the door three times. She staggers to her feet, turning the knob. She opens in fear. But she only finds the night and barking of sleep-walking dogs, more, she could feel a cold halo rise by her side. The spirit presents itself in the form of a thick mist. “Emilio,” she says, and a squeak from the empty chair comes as the affirmative answer. She sits down next to the chair that had just been occupied.
The ghostly lover touches her shoulders, her face. She feels the slide of the dead, icy finger down her back. The woman begins speaking to him, telling him about her routine. From the condition of his spectrum, he dedicates himself to inhaling the essence of things, of fruit, bread, flowers, he feels the heat of the flame, the freshness of simple water, the burning of mezcal. He would have kissed her if he had lips. But he is just looking at her as through a veil. He is caressing her hair, her face, her hands, with his invisible atoms.
At midnight the entity gets up and the chair creaks again. She feels the cold caress. Farewell to her, the rose of her fading mouth on his thin lips. “Goodbye love,” she pronounces into the air. The shadow responds with a lament that penetrates each of his bones and goes to the door taking with him the essence of the offerings: sweets, bread, water, fruits, coffee, mezcal, plus the warm kiss from the beloved between his dead jaws.
Outside, the dogs are barking relentlessly into nothingness, as a dimensional portal emerges from the Winter´s darkness. The enormous throat of the God Mictlantecuhtli opens, swallowing the row of spirits that are departing for the last abode.
From the window, she can watch the shapes vanish between the headstones. She hears the last wails that are coming out of the pantheon and are getting lost in the shadows. She turns off the candle and sleeps, imagining the rooms of all those dead, thinking that Emilio will come for her one day. She is not going to have to wait a whole year to be with him, they will enter the home where they will be together again, and there they will live forever, in the Mictlan, the house of the Lord of the night, the last resting place, that one good day all of us, without exception, will have to inhabit.
Liz Magenta (Mexico 1980) is a writer. Her works have been published in several international magazines and is the author of two books, Infinito Psytrance and Mundo Insecto.