Friday, April 6, 2012

Chapter 5--Ghost Betweens

Click to read Chapter Four

Chapter 5

Mr. Baxter checked each picture from the two cell phones again, while Josh and Zach explained where they were and what angle the shot was from. This way they'd best determine where to concentrate their efforts that afternoon at the farm. So far they figured that the fields were fine, but the barn might be the hot spot. And they hadn't even been to the farmhouse itself.

"Hey, boys. Hi, Mr. Baxter." They turned and saw Kendra and Whisper come into the class. Josh's heart skipped a beat. Whisper looked every bit as beautiful as he remembered. He hadn't been able to get her out of his mind, and by this afternoon he was wondering if his memory was accurate. It was, and then some.

"Wow, are those pictures of ghosts?" Whisper asked.

"Yeah, pretty cool, right?" Zach said.

Mr. Baxter looked back at her. "What made you think that, Ms. Douglas? You only saw one, maybe two, and from across the room."

"I don't know. Like I said yesterday, I don't really believe in them. That picture, though, sort of spoke to me." She shrugged.

"What's with all the ghost stuff?" Kendra asked.

"Get used to it, baby," Zach said, patting her lower back. Josh wondered briefly if he'd ever gone lower when they were alone. They'd been officially dating for a few months, and as far as he knew, they hadn't progressed past kissing. Not that Zach was one to gossip, but Kendra would have told him. She was great with secrets with everyone but Josh--she shared everything with him. As she and Zach got more serious, he wasn't sure he wanted the influx of information to continue.

"What do you mean?"

"You're going ghost hunting," Mr. Baxter said. "At the abandoned farm."

Kendra rolled her eyes, but Whisper's face lit up. "Ooh, that sounds so cool."

Josh stepped back next to her and said, "It is. Zach and I went a few days ago. That's where we got those pictures."

"Why is there an abandoned farm here in the middle of the city?"

"It's been there forever, and none of us even know when it was an actual farm."

"I can't believe it's not party central," Kendra said. "Probably because it's so creepy. Eww, you guys went there?"

Zach nudged her lightly. "And you'll be there today, too. Welcome to Digital Photography, AKA the Ghost Hunters Club."

"Sigh. Whatever. Like ghosts even exist."

Mr. Baxter cleared his throat. "I can give you a history lesson on the farm later, but for now I want you to get started with the pictures. I'm sure you all have plenty of homework, so don't dawdle too long. The administrators would hate that I'm sending you out to photograph ghosts, but they'd really tan my hide if they realized I was keeping you from your studies."

Kendra clicked her tongue. "Like I'm going to study anyway, Mr. Baxter."

"That's another discussion we'll have to have soon, Ms. Phelps. I see why you and Mr. Riley get along so well, but I really wish you'd take more of a cue from Mr. Hart."

Josh blushed and glanced over at Whisper. Oh, god, he hoped she didn't think he was a nerd. She smiled at him, and he smiled back. Could they all hear his heart beating? It sounded to him like it was loud enough to drown out the conversation, but no one seemed to notice.

"My grades are fine, Mr. Baxter. Besides, there are more important things to learn in school than just book stuff."

"Yeah," Zach said. "Like these ghosts."

Kendra threw her hands up. "Whatever. Can we just go take these silly pictures?"

"Yeah, we'll definitely need to talk about priorities sooner rather than later. Both of you. But for today, take these cameras." He passed out four expensive-looking digital cameras. Josh didn't know much about them, but he browsed around electronic stores enough to know quality merchandise when he saw it.

"No need for me," Whisper said. "I have my own." She pulled out a camera from her purse and showed it to Mr. Baxter.

He examined it for a few seconds. "Yeah, that'll do. It's at least as good as mine." He turned his attention back to Josh, Zach, and Kendra. "Remember, those are my personal property, so please be careful with them. Only use them at the farm and bring them back to me tomorrow after school. Got it?"

They nodded. "You have a memory card in here?" Zach asked.

"Yeah, they each have one loaded in. You'll have plenty of space for pictures. Snap one ever few seconds, and don't worry about checking them there. It's better to look on the big computer monitor anyway. And no more than a half-hour. Then home to hit the books. Even you, Ms. Phelps. Understand?"

Kendra rolled her eyes. "How come you're picking on me? Zach does the same amount of work."

"Hey, don't bring me into this."

Josh and Whisper looked at each other and shared a laugh. He wanted to step over just to be closer to her, but that'd probably look weird and make him look like a stalker. So he held his ground and contented himself with sharing the moment with her.

"Fine," Mr. Baxter said, rolling his eyes right back at Kendra. "All of you hit the books equally hard. Especially you two, Mr. Hart and Ms. Douglas. Is that better, Ms. Phelps?"

"Sigh. You don't need to get all dramatic on us, Mr. Baxter." Everyone cracked up except Kendra, who rolled her eyes again. They said goodbye to Mr. Baxter and headed out to hunt some ghosts.

Click to read Chapter Six Part One

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