Raised by @chettsgenie #NaNoWriMo



Written by Sharon Stevenson

NaNo Excerpt


“How does that make you feel?”

The question gave me pause and probably for the wrong reasons. ‘How does that make you feel?’ Was that really the best a fully licenced Adjustment Therapist could do? She had to be messing with me. My teeth were going to be ground down to stubs by the end of the 12-block of court mandated sessions.

“Which part? The being stabbed to death or the waking back up like… this?” My skin had turned a weird bluish-grey colour, my irises darkened to ink that was just barely more blue than black. I drew her daggers but she wasn’t the slightest bit impressed, and as I stared the hideous bright orange mound of fake hair on her thick head moved. She shoved the pen further under the wig and I fought back a shudder. I was seriously beginning to regret calling the police. I mean really. I should have known I was dead the second I looked down and found the knife wounds miraculously healed. The weird colour of my skin might not have been noticeable considering the amount of blood that psycho-bitch stalker had spilled trying to make me lie down and stay there but I should have known better than to think for one second I’d survived the stabbing.

Everyone knew therapy was compulsory for the recently reanimated, and had been since the early nineties. I would just have to suck it up. Folding my arms, I steadfastly refused to sink back into the big plush seat. I’d sit there and take her bull but I wasn’t going to find a single thing to enjoy about it.

The therapist they’d assigned was a typical choice. She’s roughly the size of the armchair she’s somehow managed to squish her body into. She’s also a vampire. They’re not allowed to work with live humans, neither am I anymore.

“Let’s start with the being killed.” Her eyes flashed orange for a half-second and that gruesome and horrifying sight reminded me of the candles being lit on a grinning jack-o-lantern, if said jack-o-lantern was salivating. A real live human would have missed it. Too bad that wasn’t me anymore. This would be one of those ‘adjustments’ she was supposed to be helping me make.

“It stung a bit,” I deadpanned. In truth it was what I imagined being ripped apart by a pack of wild dogs might feel like. What it came right down to was a lot of screaming and a lot of blood.

“Uh huh,” she muttered, taking notes I seriously suspected were actually a shopping list. I could just about make out the word ‘pants’. I really hoped it was a shopping list.

“Okay, it stung a lot. Whatever. I’m over it.” Like anyone gets over being brutally murdered by a one night stand. Talk about morning after regrets.

“How do you feel about your current status?” She wasn’t quite as titillated by my reanimation as she had been by my death. Too bad, she wasn’t getting her flabby hands on my gory details. Her face stayed neutral, with no demonic eye-flash to signal desire. In fact, she looked bored. I tried not to smirk too hard.

“Let’s see. I can’t eat, I can’t drink, I can’t have sex,” – the eye-flash gave me the shivers this time – “my contract had an animation clause so I’m unemployed. The crazy bitch who killed me slashed her wrists in my bathroom after covering my kitchen in my blood. My cousin insists on coming around and pissing off my room-mate but he’s too busy having the blood sucked out of his body to spend any actual time with me anymore. I think that’s it for now.”

“Your cousin?” Her eyes had lit up and stayed that way. Fatty wasn’t catching her own dinner anytime soon. I probably shouldn’t dangled Mickey in front of her greedy eyes, but she probably shouldn’t be salivating at the thought of a potential snack while she was supposed to be helping me re-integrate myself into society, or whatever the hell she was actually supposed to be doing to help me.

“This is about me,” I reminded her. “I’m not giving you his name.”

“Of course not,” she scoffed, writing other things down. I couldn’t see this time. She’d purposefully coved it with her meaty fist. “Well then, that’ll be all. For now.”

A relieved glance at the clock told me our forty-five minute allocation was up. I couldn’t really say it had been painful, not after the whole being murdered thing. I got up quickly. She didn’t move a muscle. Her ass was probably too busy eating the chair.

“See you next week, Peter.”

“Not if I see you first.” The mumble was likely picked up by her bat-like ears and so what if it was? It wasn’t like she could actually chase me. So that was that. I got to go back to my dingy poorly converted tenement flat and clean the no doubt soaked in blood off the floors. As if that wasn’t bad enough, there’s the question of my reanimation and what it means.

See, that’s the thing. Corpses don’t just get up and walk around without a little help. A magic user has to cast a reanimation spell. Those spells don’t come cheap or easy. They just don’t get done without a reason. So that’s my predicament.

Who would have wanted to raise me from the dead, and why?

Also by Sharon Stevenson