Chapter 14

Coming to Terms

Mary walked up to Mrs. Beadley’s home with heavy steps. She wished Gran hadn’t insisted that they make this trip today. They’d only put Chowder to rest the night before. She’d wanted to stay home in bed. As Gran knocked on the front door, Mary couldn’t help remembering carrying Chowder the last time they’d been there, the way Mrs. Beadley had stammered at the sight of him, how he’d been happy to be there with them.

Nina opened the door for them with a relieved smile. “Thank you so much for coming,” she said as she ushered them in. Mary cast a weary look around the house. She didn’t hear Marvin, but she was surprised to find Neil sitting in the living room.

He nodded hello to them. He had a large picture frame in his hands. It had a wedding photo in it. It must be him and his late wife Gladys. She went to stand to the side. She’d felt unqualified to help the last time, this time she felt uninterested.

“Why are you here again?”

“Your wife called us. It seems you’re really upsetting her.” She kept her voice low as she answered.

“I’m only looking out for her.”

“No, you’re not. You’re being selfish and mean.”

“Now see here, girl. You don’t know anything about marriage.”

“I know it involves ‘til death do you part. What’s your excuse?”

Gran was talking to Nina and Neil during her conversation with Marvin. Neil was showing her the picture, and she was nodding her head while lightly touching it.

“Who are these women, Marvin?”

“Two mediums or something. The girl can hear us just fine.”

“She can?”

“Yes, she can,” Mary said softly. Gran sent an inquiring glance her way. Mary shrugged and dropped her eyes. She really didn’t want get involved.

“Marvin, Gladys? I need you both to listen to me,” Gran said looking about the room. “You both know what’s happened to you. It’s time to move on.”

“And go where?

Mary was curious about this too. She’d heard Gran talk about ushering spirits to the other side, but she’d never really understood how that was supposed to work. She got that spirits anchored to an object to stay, but how were they supposed to leave unless you destroyed the anchor?

“You should feel it in your hearts like a tug. Follow it.”

“Do you feel it, Marvin? I think I feel it.”

“Yeah, I suppose, but it doesn’t mean we should leave.”

“Your loved ones are safe and cared for. You can leave with clear consciousnesses and easy hearts. Your time here is done. You need to continue your journey. Staying will only hurt you and those you care for.”

She felt cold. She knew the temperature in the room hadn’t dropped, and no one else seemed to notice it. “Marvin, is that you?”

“What, girl?”

She looked down at her hands. They were shaking. Sweat was breaking out on her upper lip. She wiped it away and wanted to pull her hair out. Gran looked over at her again with concern. She wrapped her arms around herself and backed out of the room. Gran called to her. She shook her head and reached for the door. She couldn’t be here. Gran stepped into the foyer with a concerned look on her face. Mary shook her head to tell her not to follow. She slipped out the door and took a few deep breathes. She clenched and unclenched her hands. She had to get it together. She looked at her hands again. They looked dirty. She jerked them to her sides and paced to the front gate. Why was she even here? She didn’t care if Marvin and Gladys went to the light.

She turned and began pacing back to the house. Her eyes fell on the front door. Right now, Gran was trying to get rid of two ghosts. Last night two ghosts who she’d wanted to stay faded away. None of it was right.

She turned and paced back to the gate. They could go peacefully. No one had to hurt them, and they didn’t have to hurt anyone. It was more than others got. A lot more.

She swung around when she reached the gate and paced back toward the house. Why did ghosts hang around? Why did they insist on staying? Did it really help anyone? Losing someone twice was worst than once. They were being selfish. Mean. Hurting those they loved. Well, that was wrong. Hurting was wrong.

She didn’t turn when she reached the front door. She took the handle and strode back inside. Everyone was still in the living room. Gran was still urging them to move on. Mary entered the room and stopped short at the coffee table. Gran stopped speaking and all eyes turned to her.

“That’s it. You two get two choices. One, you cross over, or two you stay on this plane, but you don’t get to stay home. You’ll come home with us, and we’ll put you in our shed. You can bicker and haunt that for the rest of eternity. How does that sound?”

“Mary!” Gran protested.

“No, the world is for the living, right? The dead shouldn’t dictate the terms to us. You two don’t even realize how lucky you got it. You get a choice. Others in your situation don’t. So which will it be? Cross over or shed?”

“Now see here,” Neil protested.

“Oh I don’t know about this,” Nina said.

“Mary, you really shouldn’t—”

“If you think you can make ultimatums—”

“I don’t know you, but you can’t—”

Mary marched out of the room and went to the kitchen. She threw open the overhead cabinet and dug out an old coffee cup. It hummed in hand. It was Marvin’s anchor. She went back into the living room and picked up Neil’s framed wedding picture. Neil leapt up.

Now I’m giving you a choice. I don’t have to. I could just smash both of these right here and poof you’d be gone.”

“Well, it’s pretty obvious which one you’d like us to choose.” Marvin grumbled.

“No, I don’t care. I’m just not going to stand here and plead. We’re not the powerless ones.”

Mrs. Beadley stood cautiously. “Wait, Mary. You don’t have to do this. We can take care of it.”

“He won’t let you be happy with Neil. He’s going to haunt you for the rest of your days. If he stays, you won’t be allowed to live, which may be worst than being dead. It’s the same for you, Neil. You decide.”

No one had an immediate response to her strong words. Gran was clearly thinking, but her eyes weren’t giving away what she thought. Neil and Nina looked pensive. Gladys and Marvin were silent, but it was a heavy silence.

She wanted to break something or scream. Why couldn’t any of them see? Why were they dithering on about this? If they wanted to get rid of the ghosts, then get rid of the ghosts! It wasn’t difficult. You didn’t need to be a freak to do it. She still held Marvin’s coffee cup in her hand. She thought about smashing it on the floor. It would be so simple. She didn’t even need to throw it, just let it slip and down it would go and then Marvin would be gone. Her hands began to shake again.

She tried to tighten her grip on the mug, but her hand wouldn’t cooperate. It slipped before she could stop it. She tried to catch it, but she was too slow. It landed on the floor with a dull ceramic ring. It didn’t shatter, but a large chip came off of it.

The coldness she’d felt earlier swept over her again. What had she done? “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” She knelt down and picked up the mug. She pressed the chip back into where it’d come off. “I can fix this. He’s still here. It’s okay. I’m sorry.” Nina and Neil stared at her. They still didn’t fully understand the significance of the mug. Gran moved from her seat and gently took it out of her hands.

“I’m sorry. It didn’t hurt you, did it, Neil?”

“No, I don’t think so. Are you all right?”

His question got a giggle out of her. She’d been thinking about smashing his anchor to smithereens, and he was asking about her well being. Gran laid her hand on her cheek. She focused her eyes on her. Gran’s eyes were full of sympathy. She didn’t understand why. She’d been rude and confrontational. She should be angry with her. “I think we should go. Mary’s not feeling well.”

“Yes, of course.” Nina got up to show them to the door. Gran carefully handed the mug over to her with a quiet explanation of what it was. Nina tucked it against her stomach in surprise while curiously looking down at it.

Mary walked to the station wagon in a bit of a daze. She wondered how much trouble she was in. You were never supposed to get so forceful with a client. You weren’t supposed to scare them. She would never be a proper medium. Sure, she could hear ghosts, but she couldn’t seem to talk to the living.

She got behind the steering wheel and stared out the windshield. She didn’t feel right to drive, but Gran still couldn’t with her ankle. A few moments later, Gran maneuvered into the station wagon. She reached to start the engine, but Gran gently placed her hand over hers to stop her.

“Mary, I’m sorry.”

“Isn’t that my line?”

Gran gave her sad little half smile and shook her head. “I thought getting out of the house and coming here might help you a little. Obviously, I was wrong.”

She shook her head. “I am so screwed up.”

Gran shook her head back at her. “No, you’re not. You went through something very difficult and are having trouble dealing with it. That’s normal. The fact is if you weren’t having trouble I would be more worried, but I see I pushed you when I should’ve just given you time.”

She twisted the leather of the steering wheel as she tried to think of something to say, but she just felt tired. “What about Marvin and Gladys?”

Gran shrugged her shoulders. “They will either go on their own, Nina and Neil will continue to have them, or we’ll find a coffee cup and a wedding photo on our doorstep.”

“I don’t think we should become the clearing house for ghosts.”

She chuckled. “Neither do I, and I don’t think Marvin and Gladys would enjoy the shed.”

Mary dipped her head at the reminder of the threat. “Sorry, that was pretty mean.”

“No, it made the ghosts realize that they can’t take their hold on this existence for granted. They may be ghosts, but they’re not invulnerable, and you were right on a lot of your points. You were a bit too blunt, but you were right. They have to decide either to hold on or let go.”

“Which they?”

“Ultimately, it will be Nina and Neil, but if Marvin and Gladys decide to let go, then they won’t have a say in the matter.”

Her mouth twisted. “It all seems so lopsided. Nobody has the ultimate power to stay, only to go. If Nina and Neil decide to let them stay, it won’t matter because Marvin and Gladys can decide they want to move on, but if Marvin and Gladys decide they want to stay, it won’t matter because Nina and Neil can decide to destroy their anchors.”

“Yes, that’s how it has to be.”

She looked back at the house. “I don’t envy them the choice.”

“Who?”

Mary’s first reaction was to say any of them, but her own words came back to her. “Nina and Neil. They’re the ones who have to live with the choice, but I hope Marvin and Gladys do the brave and loving thing by moving on.”

“How do you mean?”

“It’s selfish isn’t it? Haunting your loved ones? The dead should move on. It’s their path. Staying here only prolongs the inevitable.”

“But sometimes it’s comforting.”

Gran’s statement reminded her of Chowder. “He’s in a better place, isn’t he?”

“I’m sure he is. All of them end up where they’re supposed to be.”

“So he was supposed to be with us?”

Gran reached across and combed back her hair. Both of them had watery eyes. “Yes, I believe so. Ghosts have a purpose. His was to bring joy into our lives. He did and now he’s gone on to continue his journey.”

“But he’d still be here if his body hadn’t been harmed.”

“We can’t know that. And I don’t think he would’ve wanted it any other way. He was protecting us. He’s at peace now.”

She nodded. She knew it would take a while for her to accept it. The loss was still too fresh for her. “You said ghosts have a purpose. What about Ricky or Max? What was their purpose?”

“You said Max helped destroy the Shadowman. Without him, who knows what might have happened, and Ricky, well it’s harder to say, but Julie was there to stop him. All ghosts may have a purpose, but that doesn’t mean they serve it.”

Mary smirked. “Sort of got lost on that one didn’t you?”

“Maybe a little, but I think I pulled through.”

“Yeah, you’re still all knowing. Let’s go home.”

“Agree with the second part; have to disagree on the first.”

She shook her head. “Nope, not going to convince me there.” Gran quietly harrumphed and settled back in her seat.

When they got home, the phone was ringing. She ran to answer it and saw it was Rachel’s cell phone. Calling during school, she hoped she didn’t get caught. “Hey, Rach.”

“Where have you been?”

“I had to help Gran with a job.”

“Ooh, was it an exorcism?”

She sighed and shook her head, but that didn’t do much good over the phone. “No, it was weird though.”

“Like how?”

“I don’t know. I don’t think I could do what Gran does.”

“So you weren’t at the hospital Shadowman hunting?”

She had to grin at that. If she’d asked her a couple of days ago, she would’ve had to lie. “No, it was a ghost thing, but we weren’t any danger or anything.”

“So what is our next move with the Shadowman?”

“Nada. It’s moved on.”

“Really? How do you know?”

“He’s not there anymore. Vicky told me.” She had to be careful to keep to half truths, not sure if they were worst than lying or not.

There was a beep on the phone. “Hold on, I got another call.” She looked at the display and didn’t recognize the number.

She switched the phone to the other line. “Hello, Dubont Hellick residence.”

“Mary? It’s Kyle.”

Kyle? He’d never called her before. “Hey, what’s up?”

“Hey, how are you? I noticed you weren’t here at school.”

She snorted softly. She had no clue how to answer that question even for herself. “I’m not sick. I just needed a mental health day.”

Kyle laughed softly. “Yeah, I know about those.”

She grinned but was still perplexed about why he would call. “Is everything all right with you?”

He sighed and was quiet a moment. His silence made her tense. “I was planning to ask you in person today, but then you didn’t show and that threw my plans out the window so I’m calling because I don’t think I could go another day without asking.”

But then he didn’t continue. She was really perplexed now. “Ask me what?”

“Okay, I know this might be lame, but would you go to prom with me?”

“What?”

He let out a heavy sigh. “I knew you wouldn’t be interested. Sorry, forget I asked.”

“Um, so you don’t want to take me?”

“I asked you. What do you think?”

“I think I…” Her brain was scrambled. Prom? For real?

“You don’t have to be nice. If you don’t want to go—“

“I never thought I would go. I mean I didn’t think anyone would ask me.”

“I know it’s probably not your scene. I just thought it’d be cool if we went together.”

Her brain was definitely scrambled. “Okay.”

“Okay?”

“If you still wanna?”

“Yes, are you sure? I mean…”

“If you really thought I’d say no, why’d you ask?”

“Because I really want to go with you.”

“You do?”

Kyle sighed again. It was starting to make her smile. “You know I like you, right?”

“I thought maybe, but I didn’t want to get my hopes up.”

“Get your hopes up?”

It was her turn to be quiet a moment. “I like you too.”

“So, okay then. We can talk more at school. You’ll be here tomorrow, right?”

“Yeah, I will.”

“See you then.”

“Yeah.”

She switched back to Rachel, not even sure her friend would’ve stayed on the line, but she was still there. “So when do you wanna go prom dress shopping?”

“What?”

“Well, I’ll need one for the corsage.”

“Oh my God, did Kyle ask you?”

“Just now.”

She jerked the cordless from her head at the ear splitting squeal. “Oh man, now I need to find a date. I’ve gotta go. Talk to you later?”

“Yeah.” She turned off the phone and looked around the living room. Gran was in the kitchen washing dishes. She wandered in and watched her. Her stomach was all aflutter from Kyle, but she was still sad. She realized some quiet was the best thing for her. She gave Gran a kiss on the cheek and went outside to the backyard to sit underneath the crookety tree by the fresh mound. She shied away from thinking of it as a grave. She looked up at the sky and watched the clouds. One of them looked like Chowder. She smiled as tears slid from her eyes. She wasn’t all right yet, but she would be.

“I hope you’re happy, Chowder, and if you can, keep an eye on Max to make sure he stays out of trouble. I miss you.” There was no response to her words, but a sense of calm settled over her. She kept looking up at the sky.





THE END.



Now that you've finished Stalking Shadows, come over to my blog and help me pick a cover for the ebook edition!

129 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sorry to see the end of Chowder, rather liked him, but an interesting twist.Would have thought there was more to do with Gran's reaction to finding out the shadow was being controlled by Mr White. Will you be writing any more on Mary, or are you going to leave this now?

Steve

S.A. Hunter said...

Steve,

Very good point about Gran. I don't think it occured to me because I was focusing so hard on Mary and her reactions. I think I should put something in there touching on how this affected her.

Fiona said...

So it was Max who drugged Gran and Mary - clearly he was capable of manipulating objects.

I might have missed something - did we learn why Gran was behaving a little strangely, which Mary noticed? I have three theories: Zeke was mentally influencing her in some way, the shadowman was draining her and that was making her out of sorts, or she was depressed because she realized her abilities were not up to this task and she had to put her granddaughter in danger. It might be one or a combination of these things.

S.A. Hunter said...

Hmmm, part of Gran's mood was influenced by the Shadowman, esp. right after the hospital attack.

She was also dealing with the conflicting desires of keeping Mary safe and the inability to stop her so she had to help her.

I tried to explain a bit at Mr. Whites and later in this bit of dialogue in Mary's bedroom, but it may not be very clear:

Gran nodded and looked at the carpet. “Exactly. You know what’s right and will do it, no matter what. I admire that in you, and don’t want to ever tell you no, but on the other hand, I’m your grandmother, and I know that you could get hurt and I don’t want that, but if I don’t help you, if I try to stop you, you’ll do this anyway without me and maybe get hurt worst. I don’t want you facing this monster, but I know I can’t stop you so I better help you.” She sighed and shook her head. “But I really wish you hadn’t come across this thing. I wish I could keep you safe and now this thing has followed us home and you’re not safe. I can’t keep you safe.”

Thanks for your comments.

S.A. Hunter said...

I just realized I didn't answer one of Steve's questions: Yes, I would like to write another story featuring these characters, but I'm putting them to rest for a bit to focus on other original stories.

Anonymous said...

can you tell me where to find some of your other books on the internet? i really liked scary mary and stalking shadows

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon,

The only other story I have online right now is Unicorn Bait. There's a link to it on the sidebar. The web address is http://unicornbait.sahunter.net

I'm really happy you enjoyed Scary Mary and Stalking Shadows.

Anonymous said...

I have a question that's been bothering me for a while now-wait no...i forgot to start of with the way normal people do it...hi there xD okay now that that's out of the way, I'd like to start off by saying that i am in loveeeeeeee with these characters. Personally i think it would've been pretty amusing and sweet to have the prom scene in there but it's still beyond amazing. You had me all teared up and snotty when Chowder died (may he Rest in Doggy Heaven) oh right...the question...what was with the stuff in the box under Gran's bed? It seemed kinda suspicious and who was that person....what was her name...Cathy Moore? xDDD

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon, the Moores are a mystery that Mary will investigate in a future story. I'm afraid that for this installment I had to delete all parts of that plot. (At least I think I've deleted all of them now.) The next Scary Mary story will feature Jake and the mysterious death of Cathy Moore.

I was sad about Chowder too. He was a valiant little dog.

Newly Born Scary Mary FAN said...

Hi, I really like your stories but I am really disappointed with on thing from you....

WHy in the world you gave idea about what to see in next story? come-on we love surprises and you was good enough to satisfy us till date don't you?

I do look forward to more twists and turns....

To be honest this is the place I am putting in my bookmarks... and you are the only second person till date who got place in bookmarks, first is indeed John from www.securitynovels.co.uk for amazing stories

S.A. Hunter said...

Newly Born Scary Mary Fan, I'm so sorry! I should've put spoiler tags on that comment. This story has gone through a heavy revision that axed a major part of the story, and I wanted early readers to know that that part would not be gone forever. I'll try to correct, but don't want to delete mine or others comments.

Xirena said...

D'Awww, much sadness yet lots of awesomeness too. Sadness for Chowder and the end of the story, awesomeness for Mary and Kyle, and the possibility of a future story.

One critique though, in several instances throughout you incorrectly used the word "worst". As in "Did it really help anyone? Losing someone twice was worst than once." It should read "Losing someone twice was worse than once." But in all reality that was the only problem I saw.

S.A. Hunter said...

Xirena,

Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed SS. Sorry for the worst/worse confusion. I generally know the difference, but I definitely type the wrong thing sometimes and Word is not omniscient. When I do the edit, I'll keep an eye out for those mistakes.

Anonymous said...

can you to us when you may start the next installment of the scary Mary series?

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Anon,

That's a good question. The sequel will not appear any time soon. It will probably take a year. I admit I've started writing a sequel, but I'm only a thousand words in. When I begin posting it, I'll definitely add a link to the end of this chapter like I did with Scary Mary and announce it on my Twitter account. If people would like, they can send me an email requesting to be alerted that way like when Stalking Shadows went on hiatus. Readers can also keep an eye on my blog for announcements there. If anyone has another suggestion for how to be alerted when the next Scary Mary story comes out, I will try it.

FYI, my twitter account will only be used for writing announcements.

If you do send me an email requesting I alert you when the next story begins, I will hold it and not share it with anyone.

email sahunter(at)sahunter(dot)net

Kathy said...

Another great Mary story! Loved it!

S.A. Hunter said...

Thanks, Kathy! :-)

MADELYN said...

KYLE & MARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FINALLY!!!!!!
EXCEPT YOU REALLY MADE IT OBVIOUS... BE MORE DISCREET NEXT TIME, IN OTHER WORDS, YOU REALLY SHOULD ONLY SAY THAT SHE'S THINKIG ABOUT HIM AND NOT SAY ANYTHING ABOUT THE OTHER PERSON GIVING HINTS BECAUSE IT KINDA JUST MAKES THE STORY A LIL PREDICTABLE

S.A. Hunter said...

Madelyn,

Glad you like the pairing. I think it will be fun. Not sure what you mean about it being obvious...I mean Kyle was sweet on her and she noticed and she likes the idea of a boyfriend, so it was obvious something was going to happen. I'm not big on the 'Will they or Won't they' thing. Sorry about that.

Anonymous said...

Hi! I really enjoyed Scary Mary and Stalking Shadows! Thanks for writing! I was absolutely crushed, though, that Chowder moved on.

Anonymous said...

Just leaving little plot twist unexplained is good liturature.

The Swede

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon and the Swede, thank you both for reading, I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Anonymous said...

I loved scaary mary and stalking shadows i got scary mary on my Nook and loved it, will stalking shadows ever get on the Nook

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon, thank you so much. It's great to hear from the Nook users. I do plan to put Stalking Shadows out for the Nook but it will take time because I want to edit it some. The text is pretty rough in spots I think. I'm currently working on Unicorn Bait's ebook edition. Stalking Shadowss will be next.

Anonymous said...

Oooooh. Dang,I forgot to tell you but in an earlier chapter, you got Mrs. Neilson (or is it Nelson) spelled wrong twice. It's the last time Mary sees her at the hospital in this book. Hope you can find it! Great job on the book though. Sequels can never be as good, but this one was super close.

Margaret said...

Loved both novels very much would love to hear more please..................

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon, thanks so much for the heads up. I had trouble remembering which way I spelt it. I think I went back and forth and missed a few. I will keep an eye out.

Margaret, thanks for the comments and glad you enjoyed them.

Anonymous said...

Love this series! When is the next one? Is Mary going to get another ghost pet? I want to see how Hickey treats Mary after this.

Anonymous said...

WOW!!! I really loved the story!!! You're already one of my favorite writers!!! Awesome!!! I hope you continue this novel... I'll be waiting on the third installation!!!
-Kahlel

Anonymous said...

WHEN will the next installment of Scary Mary come out?!?!?!?!?! I am uber excited. How can I find you on twitter?

Anonymous said...

how far are you into the next scary Mary?

Anonymous said...

please post however much of the next scary mary you have. i don't care if it's sloppy, I NEED TO READ IT!!!

Anonymous said...

I posted a commnet in chapter 7. I know it is annoying to keep checking everything. I was tempted to email you, but too many incidents have happened to me lately when my email address was given away.
I loved both stories and am still very curious if you are male or female. Regarding unicorn bait, it says 'adult' in the sidebar. Although I love your style, I am weary of reading adult literature. Does adult mean that those who do not want their children exposed to certain things should not read?

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I could not wait any longer. I nearly sent a programatic email from a bogus address to get you to look at these comments. Anyway, I went to the ErgoFiction interview and I was very surprised to find out you are female (I do not know why, though, because the plot focuses on a girl from her viewpoint so duh)

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Anon, Sorry for not responding sooner. I've been working on Unicorn Bait.

To answer your questions:

1. I am only about 3,000 words into the third Scary Mary story. I don't know when it will be completed, but I plan to work on it more as I edit Stalking Shadows. Some things will be changed, like they aren't going to prom. It's way too early in the school year. Mary and Kyle will go to homecoming.

2. I'm female, but you found that out already. ;-) Unicorn Bait has foul language and some risque situations. I would not recommend it to those under 14. It isn't pornographic, but some lascivious stuff happens.

3. Sweet of you to read the interview. :-)

S.A. Hunter said...

Ooh, and from your question at Chapter 7...S.A. stands for Stephanie Ann. I use S.A. because my first name is tough to fit onto a book cover.

Anonymous said...

Oh my GOODNESS! I found scary mary on the nook and found this one on your web page! I love these books can't wait for the next one to come out! Thank you for such a wonderful read!

S.A. Hunter said...

Thank you, Anon! Always happy to hear from the Nook readers.

C mcdonald said...

Wow! Just finished the two scary mary books in three days. I almost could not stop reading them. I love the characters and am looking forward to the next book. Thank you for sharing them!!!

S.A. Hunter said...

Thank you, C McDonald. I'm so happy people are enjoying the series.

Anonymous said...

You made good stories. At first I thought that Scary Mary would be uninteresting, but it got me hooked up. I liked it when you had a sequel, it was more adventurous. I wonder though to Vicky and Cy. How would they treat Mary in school? I wish Rachel will have a love interest too!

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon, thank you for the kind words. The new story is coming along. Being around Vicky and Cy is going to be tense and weird for Mary. Is there a boy on the horizon for Rachel? Maybe...

Anonymous said...

Loved the books, but I like Mary and Cy together........any chance?

S.A. Hunter said...

While Vicky's still in the picture, Cy will be unavailable...

Anonymous said...

Great story.... I read both scary mary and Stalking shadows in the same day at a stretch.... You are a really talented writer.... When will another story about mary be published? I'm looking forward to reading more stories about these characters....

S.A. Hunter said...

Thank Anon!

I'm working on the 3rd story tentatively titled "Long Dead". If curious, I'm trying to keep a progress bar updated on my website www.sahunter.net to let readers quickly see how far I am. I'm not very far right now...

Anonymous said...

Good

Anonymous said...

opps I ment good book

S.A. Hunter said...

It's all good, Anon. ;-)

Cheyanne said...

Im extremely happy your making more scary mary books, Your books are AMAZING. Your one of my new favorite authors.

S.A. Hunter said...

Cheyanne,

Thanks so much for the kind words. I'm so happy you enjoyed Scary Mary and Stalking Shadows.

Anya said...

Eugh! I am on pins and needles waiting for the next. I likey Kyle and Mary. I VERY MUCH DISLIKE CY NOW! I hate jerks - what he did totally reminds me of this character in another book that did something similar to the MC and it made me so upset I couldn't sleep - even though she ended up with someone better too, but BLEH. Did I already say I hate jerks? LOL. I'm going to check out Unicorn Bait tomorrow as it is midnight where I am! Love your writing!

Anya said...

OH! And I forgot to say, my name was almost going to be Stephanie Anne (Grandpa Stephen and Grandma Anne). I love that name and sometimes wish my dad went through with it and named me that.

Rebecca said...

S.A. Hunter,
I found your book Scary Mary in the Kindle store for free, ended up here to read the sequel. I enjoyed both stories and look forward to reading more from you. I will read Unicorn Bait in a while, I am currently shirking my college algebra....must get back to work.

I am also excited to see you as a Goodreads author, I will keep my eye on you there as I don't have a Twitter account. Thanks and keep writing!

S.A. Hunter said...

Rebecca,

Thank you so much! The Goodreads thing is sort of new/only recently put to good use (one of those sign up for an account and then don't do anything with it until months later). If anyone is on Goodreads, you can find my profile here. I'd be happy to friend you!

mistressmimsy said...

"While Vicky's still in the picture, Cy will be unavailable... "

All for the best, anyway. A desperate need to hide and lie about a vital part of yourself in order to avoid freaking out and frighten your date is just not good for a relationship. :p

(And if it matters, I found Unicorn Bait and Scary Mary on Smashwords, and came to the website to read Stalking Shadows.)

S.A. Hunter said...

Mistress Mimsy,

Hello! The whole lieing and hiding thing is bad news for any relationship. Mary's going to have to deal with that.

Yay for Smashwords! They offer a wonderful service. When Stalking Shadows is finally edited, I will be uploading it there.

Stig Hemmer said...

Thank you for an excellent book!

Holly S. said...

Hi there! Just finished Stalking Shadows, and have read Scary Mary and Unicorn Bait. All three are fantastic! I hope to read more about both Mary and Naomi. I really like that Kyle and Mary are getting together. Seems with him having been possessed he might be a better listener and all around match for her. Thanks again for sharing such great stories!

Anonymous said...

thank you so much S.A. Hunter for posting your books and letting us read it for free...hope ull make write even more!
im your new fan! ;)
-patty from philippines

S.A. Hunter said...

Thank you, Stig, Holly, and Patty!

Sharmila said...

Hi S.A Hunter!!!
I loved both the books, Scary Mary and Stalking Shadows... Cant wait for the next book in this series :) I feel it would have been nice if Cy had come back for Mary since he was her first crush :)

alexmarie said...

Really enjoyed this story. I read "scary Mary" and " Unicorn Bait" on my Kindle today and came here to see what else Mary, Rach, and Gran were up to. I really enjoyed all three books and hope you keep writing. I would love to see more from the UB characters in the future too. Naomi and Tavik were great and I would love to see what happens if Naomi's brother has to come to Taviks world sometime. I could also see a backstory novel of Gran and Mr White somewhere down the road... Again, keep writing and I will keep reading and keep telling people about your books!

Sara & Savannah said...

Just bought a nook and found Scary Mary and so glad I did. I finished it in two days and quickly started Stalking Shadows( which I finished in one day) . These books are wonderful. My daughter is ten and I was pleased that she could read them also. She is almost finished with Scary Mary. So pleased to see that there will be more books. Cant wait. Thanks for the great books.

S.A. Hunter said...

Thank you all for the kind words. I am focusing on getting the ebook edition of Stalking Shadows complete. I'm so close, but editing is very slow process for me. Once that's done I'll throw myself into writing the third Scary Mary story Long Dead.

Anonymous said...

Love, Love, Love both Scary Mary and Stalking shadows. Read both books in three days. Just like when i read the twilight series, i could not get enough and will keep an eye out for the next book.

S.A. Hunter said...

Thanks, Anon! Glad you enjoyed it. It'll be six months before I can start estimating when Long Dead will arrive.

sunny102775 said...

My 14 year old daugnter and I found Scary Mary free for the kindle. We both started reading it and finished in a matter of hours. Finding book two has kept us reading even longer! We can't wait for the 3rd book, of course kinda glad its not out yet....we would be up till the wee hours of the morning reading!

S.A. Hunter said...

I LOVE hearing that parents and kids are sharing Scary Mary's stories. It gives me such a warm happy feeling. Reading the same books and discussing is a wonderful thing. Thanks for stopping by to tell me, and I'm glad you both enjoyed it!

Stephanie.M.S said...

I've read all your books. Love them! I was upset that Cy never came around but I guess I'll get over it. For the new book I hope that Mary gets her first kiss :) I also hope that Kyle will play more of a role in the book. There is a lot of awkwardness in a first love. It could make for some funny/embarrassing parts.

S.A. Hunter said...

Stephanie (Great Name! ;-) Kyle will definitely play a bigger part in the next story and there will be awkwardness aplenty.

CaraMel said...

Are there going to be anymore Scary Mary books? I really love Mary's character, and after reading Stalking Shadows I don't feel like this is the end of her. At least I hope not :-)

CaraMel said...

Oops!!! Just saw you are working on Long Dead. I really appreciate that you post your books free online. I think you are a fantastic author with the ability to bring your characters alive. You could very well be the next J.K Rowling. Good luck

S.A. Hunter said...

CaraMel,

Thank you so much! Being compared to Rowling is quite a compliment. I'm so glad you enjoyed Stalking Shadows. I really need to knuckle down and write Long Dead. I've spent too long editing Stalking Shadows.

Lexxie Wynters said...

Now that was a great read! I can't wait for it to be available to buy because I'm up for a copy.

I was honestly shocked when it turned out to be -- -----! (spoiler) I mean it was looking me in the face but I just didn't think it would be and I liked him so much.

The ending was honestly touching on several levels - You did an amazing job with this story and I just know that Long Dead will be just as good if not better... So um will be be seeing some of Long Dead soon?? *Fluttering eyelashes*

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Lexxie,

Long Dead isn't near done yet. Still a long way off and writing is so hard to predict, I don't know how long it will take, but I am working on it everyday. I'm so glad you enjoyed my stories. Thank you for all of your comments.

Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed your books!!! I do have a question though,when Mary woke up and found the lights were turned on in her room,did Max turn them on? If so, then it means he meant no harm to Mary and Gran because they could have sucked their life force while unconscious, right?

S.A. Hunter said...

That is an excellent question! I hadn't thought about too much. I figured Gran may have turned them on, but that doesn't really work. I will have to change that or address it somehow in my edits. Thanks, Anon for bringing that up.

Angie said...

Thank you so much for your books! I've recently read Unicorn Bait, Scary Mary and Stalking Shadows! I've truly enjoyed them and look forward to Long Dead. =)

I like your ability of reminding us not judge a "book" (person) by it's cover and that very little is as it seems on the surface.

Leenz said...

I love this series!!! I was so happy when Kyle finally manned up nd asked Mary out! BTW, who's Jake? I hope he doesn't mess up Mary nd Kyle's relationship. Maybe he should end up with Racheal ( wink, wink) well that's if of course he isn't old or wrinkly!

S.A. Hunter said...

Angie,

I'm so glad you enjoyed all of my stories. There's a lot to be said for not judging a book by its cover.

Leenz,

I wish I could put spoiler tags on my comments. Jake was a part of this story in a previous draft and got taken out. He will appear in Long Dead. I can assure you that he is not a romantic interest for Mary or Rachel. And Kyle will have a bigger presence in the next book.

Thank you both for your kind words.

Isabella said...

Hi! I'm new to e-readers and was skeptical trying one out but I really enjoyed both Scary Mary and Stalking Shadows! I downloaded Scary Mary off of iBooks and then after loving it went and got Unicorn Bait off of kindle. I haven't read it yet because I wanted to finish what you had written about Mary first but I'm definitely excited to get started on it and can't wait for the third one in the series to be posted! Thanks!
-Isabella

S.A. Hunter said...

Thank you so much, Isabella! I hope you enjoy Unicorn Bait as well.

Anonymous said...

Right...well, first time commenter. I adore both of your Scary Mary books and as an amateur writer myself, I could only hope of developing such interesting characters. Usually best friends irritate me because they either fit stereotypes or are just there for exposition. Rachel, Gran, Mary and even Mr. Landa are probably some of the coolest characters I've read about. It's refreshing and a pleasure to read.

They're just that type of books that stick with me (the only others are by Pratchett and Cristopher Moore) and I've already read each about three or four times.

I usually don't leave comments because I never know what to say but I await eagerly for Long Dead and to put an end to the Jake haunting that's been going on in the comments. It's making me curious.

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon,

I'm so sorry for commenting a month late. Your words are very touching. I'm so happy that you liked it and you've put me in some very illustrious company. I've read both Pratchett and Moore and enjoy their work as well.

Thanks,
Stephanie

Anonymous said...

to be honest i think jake should have a romantic feelling for mary or something cuz then mary would have to deal with two guys(mabye three)(-CY-) and something paranormal

S.A. Hunter said...

Anonymous,

Sorry, but that's not going to happen with Jake. He is a little too young and a little too related. You'll see in Long Dead, which is evil of me to say since it is still months away. Thanks for all of the lovely comments!

Anonymous said...

OMG I think I'm gonna have a heart attack if u don't make another Mary book... ur my fab auther now......love ur books... keep writing!!!

Anonymous said...

Wait who's Jake???

Anonymous said...

I think you should have a place on this website where you put each characters name and next to them you can explain who they are...so you could just put a description of the character......

S.A. Hunter said...

Anonymous(es?),

I'm not sure if you're all the same person or not. Jake is someone who was once in Stalking Shadows and was edited out. Everyone will meet him in Long Dead. The character list is a good idea. I'll see what I can do. I've learned it is a good thing for a writer to keep a list of characters and important facts. Unfortunately, I didn't learn this until after writing several stories.

Anonymous said...

It is the same person.... thanks for explaing who Jake is.......I sooo sooo cant wait till long dead comes out!!!!
Ur my fave author now and I'm gonna buy all of ur books.... ur the best!!! I'm gonna tell all my friends about u... they all love the kinds of books u write....

Anonymous said...

I loved, loved, loved this book. I wanted to cry when Chowder died R.I.P but I woulda still loved to hear more of Vicky since she was basically the main part of the story and the jerk that dares to call himself a human, Cy-(nawesomegrlz45

S.A. Hunter said...

Anonymous,

Thank you so much! I hope your friends like the books, too.


nawesomegrlz45,

Thank you for all of your comments! I love reading people's reactions to a story. I'm so glad you liked it, and I'm oddly proud of your vitriol towards Cy.

Anonymous said...

No problem Ms. Hunter! I LOVE YOUR BOOKS! I am currently reading Unicorn Bait-(nawesomegrlz45

S.A. Hunter said...

Hope you enjoy that one, too. :-)

Anonymous said...

i've enjoyed every single one of your books and im high estatic i can barely wait til the next addition falls off the shelf (giddy with joy) lol : )..... DJ

S.A. Hunter said...

Awww, I make you giddy? That is so awesome. Thank you for letting me know!

Anonymous said...

When is the next book to scary mary coming out?

S.A. Hunter said...

Anon,

Sorry for the delay in my reply. The third in the Scary Mary series should be coming out this year. I'm not quite sure when, either late summer/early fall. Thanks!

Linda Z Gray said...

brilliant book hope there are more to come! I am 51 and really enjoyed it immensely, Thank you so much for a good read. linda Z Gray

S.A. Hunter said...

Linda,

It means a lot to me to hear from readers. I'm glad it can appeal to teens and adults. Thanks for stopping by and letting me know you liked it. That was super nice of you. :-)

Anonymous said...

i really wanted mary t be more of a rebel so that at the prom even when kyle tryed to take her there/ dance with her/ flirt she would punch or kick him real hard. (i would hae done that) and then he randomly kisses her.

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Anonymous!

I don't know about Mary punching or kicking Kyle for no good reason. I will try to keep her as much as a rebel as possible. She did rough him up during Scary Mary pretty good.

Anonymous said...

hey! i so love your Scary Mary Series!!!! I really hate Cy he was a jerk, is a jerk and forever will be a jerk!!!!!! arghhhh!!! and i like Kyle now... he's becoming the "Good one". haha

-Lorraine

S.A. Hunter said...

Lorraine,

Yeah, Kyle is showing some different sides of himself and Cy is too, but they're not nice sides. Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

I loved reading these 2 books on my kindle fire. I couldn't put it down. I think I will read Unicorn Bait while I wait for the next installment of Scary Mary. When will it be done? O cant wait to see what happens with Mary and Kyle and to see if Viki is any nicer to Mary.

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Anon,

I'm really sorry. Blogger marked your comment as spam and there's some sort of weird delay between me being able to unmark it spam. Anyway, I am working on the third book, but don't know when it will be done. Vicky will be more tolerating of Mary, but they're not going to be BFF's anytime in the near future. Too much bad blood there. Hope you like Unicorn Bait!

naru said...

hi, just read the 2 books of mary in one go and ended up waiting for more. it's 7:08 a.m. now so I'll read the unicorn one after some sleep. REALLY love your story and waiting for more XD.

S.A. Hunter said...

Naru,

I'm so sorry for not replying sooner! I hope you slept well and didn't have to do anything on the 28th. ;-)

Anonymous said...

Dear S.A. Hunter,
hey! I love your books!!!! I'm so flipped on how amazing these books are, I've so far read scary mary and stalking shadows (in 3 days time :D) Can I ask exactly what happend during the last few months, because in scary Mary, Mary sprained her ankle and Cy was being nice but in the beggining he acts like a total jerk face?
and...
PLEASE TELL ME WHEN THE 3RD ONE WILL COME OUT!!! BTW. I'm like 11 and a total know-it-all kinda person so I just wanted to point out that during the second run in with Mrs.Neilson, you wrote Mrs.Nelson twice! :) haha!
Kelly :)
I LOVE YOUR BOOKS!!

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Kelly!

Yep, the Nelson and Neilson mistake happens. I was conflicted on which one to use and unfortunatley it didn't get corrected everytime I changed my mind. It shouldn't be that way in the ebooks. I haven't corrected the website like the books. If you read it in one of the ebook versions, let me know b/c I do want to fix.

Your question is really interesting. Mary and Cy sort of made up, but Cy stayed stand-offish with her. The thing with Vicky in a coma really stressed him out and he was already sort of stressed because he knew Mary wouldn't like that he was dating Vicky. When he sees Mary, he's tense and expecting a fight so he's snappish with her. He already thinks that he might have to cut Mary off as a friend completely, which he doesn't like because he doesn't like being mean or hard on someone, but he knows Mary has a big problem with Vicky. When he sees Mary at the hospital because, he thinks she's going to do something mean or laugh at Vicky which would be really wrong and would mean that Mary is a terrible person, and Mary can't tell him that actaully she's there to help his new girlfriend. So Cy thinks the worst of her and Mary can't defend herself. Things just sort of snowball from there.

Anonymous said...

Ahh, thank you for the info :)
-Kelly

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
S.A. Hunter said...

Hi shabrequeen,

I deleted you comment so your email address wouldn't be picked up by spammers, but I have saved it and added it to the list of who I'll contact when the next book comes out. Thanks so much!

If anyone wishes to be contacted when the next Scary Mary is published, you can email me sahunter(at)sahunter.net and I'll save you info. I won't contact to pester you about anything else.

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much! Didn't think about spammers.

-Shabre'

Anonymous said...

I KNEW IT!!! Kyle and Mary are gonna be a thing in the next book, right?

(Hee hee!<3)

S.A. Hunter said...

Yes, they certainly will. :-) And they'll be dating!!!

Karla Racedo said...

I just found scary mary while browsing on my nook and i couldnt stop reading it....i immediately had to read the sequel..i can not wait for the third installment and see where things go with kyle and mary and the next adventure :)...when will the third book be released i cant wait for it

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Karla,

I'm afraid I cannot give you a date at this point for the next Scary Mary book. I am in the process of editing Dragon Prey, the sequel to my fantasy novel Unicorn Bait. I have begun writing Long Dead, the third in the Scary Mary series, but don't have any clue when it will be published. I would hope late this year. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This was such a good book. I loved reading it. I totally predicted Kyle and Mary getting together. That was so awesome. Cy is still a bit of a jerk. As for Mr. White, well he's just a mean old fart. LOL

S.A. Hunter said...

Mr. White, unfortunately, was a bit worse than an old fart. Cy's confused and Kyle is awesome. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Anonymous said...

This book was really good but in the next book you should do more with her school councillor as he is my fav character and I was sad to see he wasn't in this book. But keep up the good work. Xxx

S.A. Hunter said...

Aw, thanks Anon! I like Landa, too. I was just working on an awkward talk between him and Mary. He's fun to work with.

Jessica Bailey said...

I can't wait for the third book. I just started reading it tonight and can't can't wait

S.A. Hunter said...

Jessica,

Thanks so much! I'm glad you liked it and I hope you like Broken Mary/Spirits. (Still haven't settled on title :-P)

Piper said...

thank you for putting this up such a really great site. Stimulating me to read much more.

Piper
www.trendone.net

Anonymous said...

hi,I saw your book for free on this site and i read it.It was so intruging that i read it and the stalking shadows within 3 days.They were amazing!!!:).So i wanted to know when the next series of the book will come out.plz.

S.A. Hunter said...

Hi Anon,

The third book just came out! It isn't free to read anywhere unfortunately, but you can preview it on various sites or read the first chapter on my blog. The third book is called Broken Spirits. It's available on Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords. Other places should be uploading it soon.

http://www.sahunter.net/2013/07/broken-spirits.html