The ghosts were moving through the long grasses before the storm. The clouds rolled in from the northeast and the day was dark as night and his ears popped as the pressure plunged. The ghosts were hot as autumn and the air was frigid and then fat rain was falling around him, soaking his clothes, plastering hair and shirt to his skin darkly. He lifted his arms to the sky, his torn-off fingernails in the stormlight looking bloody and fungal, and cried out. The ghosts, those that were caught in the bowl of the storm, swirled around him, clung to his legs, fearful and needing.
A bolt of lightning reached down for him but by then the ghosts had already taken him away to the west, along the road to Hemming. “Stay,” they whispered, voices the settling of mountains. “Stay…”
He left the road and they howled behind him. It was dark there, and the water that dripped off of him glowed palely, white as milk. His footprints trailing behind him flickered unsteady as candlelight, and slowly sank into the earth.
“Stay,” hissed the ghosts, their voices drifting across the miles like thunder and the smell of ozone.