It was midwinter and Ariella was shut in her new house by drifting snow. They should have been together, but he left her before the ink dried on the deed and she was alone amongst vast and empty rooms.
At night she heard old boards creaking. In the library she would find the fire lit and a smell of ancient tobacco. Children’s laughter echoed. Strange words appeared on misted mirrors and faces formed in the smoke.
One night when she laid the table out for dinner, she laid eight places. The number seemed right.
That night Ariella was not alone.
Word Count: 100