But I am playing catch-up. These are last week's: Crystallize, morbid, fragrance, cling, instant, blueprint.Oh, what fun I had . . .
I sniffed. “I smell it again!” I said.
Norma looked up from her newspaper and frowned, confused. “What?”
“That fragrance! That weird fragrance!”
She pursed her lips and sniffed, audibly. “I don’t smell anything.”
“Come over here. It seems to . . . cling to this exact spot!” I stepped to one side and indicated with both hands. “Right here!”
Sighing, Norma set down her paper and heaved her bulky self to her feet. “Fine,” she said. “But I’m only doing this because you’re my sister.”
“You’re a true friend,” I cooed, giving her just a bit more space.
Obligingly, she manoeuvred herself into the designated spot. “Okay. Here I am.”
She closed her eyes and drew in a deep breath. Then frowned and did it again. “Huh,” she said.
“Right?” I watched her.
She stepped to one side and sniffed once more. Then stepped back and repeated the procedure. “Huh,” she said again. She looked around, then slowly dropped to her knees. “I only do this because I love you,” she said, glancing up at me.
“And I love you,” I said. “So what’s making that smell?”
She bent down and sniffed the carpet. “Huh. Nothing.” She sat back on her heels and stared thoughtfully upwards. Her eyes brightened. “Maybe it’s the spirit of some former resident,” she said.
I gave her my best ‘tell-me-another’ look. “Right. A former resident who haunts only this spot?”
“Well, maybe she died right here.”
“Don’t be morbid,” I said, moving a step away.
“No! I can see it! Her body laying here, crystallizing slowly.”
"Ugh!" I said. Then grinned and picked it up. “Her spirit hanging around till her mortal remains are discovered, then deciding in that instant that it must always stay . . .”
“Pfff! What will you think of next?!”
Norma made a couple of shuffling movements, then sighed and held up her hands. “Could you?” she asked.
I shook my head and reached out to help her to her feet.
Both of us sniffed the air again.
Suddenly, a whisper of sound. A . . . hissing. It burst inside my head. “Blueprint!” it said.
I spun around, then looked at my sister. “Did you . . .?” I said no more. The look on her face told me everything.