Often times, when Folks come over, we retire after the childrens are in bed, to the Loft. If you haven’t been to Chez Relaxo (shame on you), the Loft is above the detached garage. Last night, Dionysus and I retired to the Loft to discuss things about which we were becoming Very Excited (more on that later; it involves a new LARP that I’m making), and therefore Very Loud. Dionysus is a charming man and I love him very much, but when he gets excited, he definitely uses his Outside Voice. So we went to the Loft.
We were sitting upstairs talking, and about ten minutes after we’d come in and sat down, there was a very loud “PING!” It was the sort of PING! that a nail makes when it falls on concrete, and not the sort of PING! that the machine that goes PING! makes, although the two are not entirely dissimilar. This was most definitely not the sort of PING! that a machine makes, however. Dionysus and I glanced at each other, and I said, “what the hell was that? It sounded like a nail dropped out of the ceiling and on to the concrete downstairs.”
Dionysus said “Do you want me to go check it out?”
I said, “sure!”
He rose, strode to the door, and struck a Very Manly (and Very Determined) Pose. He threw open the door and glanced around downstairs. He may have been Glowering. He was definitely Very Stern. Dionysus conquered the down-going stairs and loudly proclaimed there seemed to be nothing amiss downstairs. The door was still closed, had not been opened, and there were no visible Vermin in the garage. Upon his return to the Loft, he confirmed that everything appeared to be cool.
I thought, sometimes, vehicles make a PING! noise when their engines cool down. That could have been what it was (although neither of the vehicles had been driven for hours). It could have just been the vibration from walking around in The Loft had dislodged an errant screw, or bolt, or nail from one of the I-beams the Loft is built upon. At any rate, we put the matter from our minds.
Well, I think Dionysus did. I remembered an occasion a few weeks previous when he and I had been in the Loft and had noticed the door upstairs open slowly. Now, this door *does* tend to drift open. But what was far creepier that time was that after it swing open slowly, it then proceeded to swing determinedly closed. I’ve never seen it do that before, and the windows and doors in the garage/loft were otherwise closed, so there were no air currents active in the room. It was weird, but not as weird as the time a bat flew around in there for a few minutes before figuring out how to get out.
Anyway, for the most part, Dionysus and I put the PING! out of our minds.
A few months ago, the downstairs garage door was Acting Strangely. I examined it and discovered that the very bottom hinge on the door was missing. I ripped apart the garage looking for it, couldn’t find it, and then promptly forgot to pick up a new hinge from the hardware. We’ve been using a heavy four-inch nail in there and have more or less forgotten about it. We forget a lot of things.
As Dionysus and I were leaving, I took a quick look around the garage and didn’t see anything metal that might have made the PING!, until I walked toward the door.
There, in the middle of the floor, was a door hinge.
The other two door hinges are brass, but they’re all gummed up and dirty and generally Unpretty. This door hinge, the one that was lying in the middle of the floor, was shiny and polished. It was also very warm, although it would have been lying on the concrete floor of the Loft for well over an hour. It was so warm, it was as if it had been lying in the sun for an hour. At 11:30 at night.
I checked the hinges. None of the other two were missing. The nail was still in the bottom hinge.
Here is the conclusion to which I have come, which is the only possible logical explanation (SCIENTISTS have confirmed this explanation is SCIENTIFICALLY accurate. Well. Imaginary SCIENTISTS have): our ghost is helping us fix up our house.
So I said “Thank you, ghost!”, replaced the hinge pin, and closed the door.
It’s good to have Helpful ghosts.