“Woah dude, what happened to Sugar Pine 7?” Cib spoke abrasively. The cameras were rolling as they pulled up and into the lot.
“Uh, what do you mean? Are you talking about the cabin? It’s right there, Cib.” Steven pointed squarely, imagining his snarky voiceover about Cib and the state of the cabin. He had a good feeling about this trip, despite the setbacks and some trouble filming they had earlier. Not that anyone would need to know about that.
“Nooo, this is Sugar Pine 8, can’t you read?” Cib has gotten out of the car and was gesturing towards the giant infinity sign that had been graffitied across the door of their cabin.
“The seven isn’t even- Cib it’s an infinity sign,” Steven rolled his eyes.
“No, it’s a sideways eight obviously. God don’t you know an infinity sign looks like this,” Cib proceeded to make the strangest of movements that definitely looked nothing like an infinity sign.
“Are you guys having... an infinity war?” Parker snickered from behind them. The cameras zoomed to his smug grin as Steven held back giggles to preserve the take.
“I’m going to have so much fun with that,” Steven finally laughed.
“I know I’m not usually a pun guy but I just had to,” Parker shot back, turning is head to emphasis the pun with a wink as he was getting out of the car. Steven was right behind him.
“We’re not making that your bit,” Steven said.
“Yeah, I know, just let me have my moment,” Parker answered as they joined Cib, who was talking to the rest of the people on their trip.
“Are we going to move the cars after we get our shot?” James asked.
“I mean, yeah. They’re not in the best place right now,” Steven shrugged, “we can worry about that afterward, it shouldn’t take that long,”
It took longer than expected.
“Hey Andrew did you pick up any food? I doubt we’ll be able to go out every meal,” Steven asked. They were sitting along the couches and whatever surface someone decided to sit on. Filming was fun, but everyone was visibly drained. Maybe because this was supposed to be a vacation, everyone had less tolerance for the regular amount of work. Steven could feel it in himself as well.
“Yeah, it’s mostly just snacks though. Stuff we can take back easily,” Andrew replied.
“Good, works for me,” Steven gave a lackluster thumbs up, throwing his head back in a relaxed boredom.
“What are our plans for the next few days?” James asked, tapping at the schedule he kept on his phone.
“The easiest way to get the most footage in less time is to split the group up. Maybe tomorrow we can go out and do whatever. Parker and I were planning on seeing a psychic to start the whole possession thing,” Steven explained.
“Are you going to try to ask for a real curse?” Cib asked.
“We should, but no, probably not. I’m just going to ask if she can pretend to curse us or show us something that looks like it could be cursed. I don’t know. She sounded like she really believed her stuff when we talked on the phone, I don’t want to like, offend her though,” Steven scratched his head in annoyance. He was really looking forward to their bit, they had a lot of ideas and the psychic seemed willing to play along. She was an older woman, so their main concern was that she wouldn’t understand what they were doing if they just waltzed in with cameras and photo-release forms, especially if they were planning to be a bit rude in the video.
“I kinda want her to curse me,” Parker mused, “it’s not like anything would actually happen. Of course, if I start spitting black bile before the vacation’s over, we can always go back and get it removed.”
“Would she really want to remove solid evidence of the occult?” Jeremy wondered. There was a collective shrug.
“Well, I don’t know what you guys are doing but I’m going to take a lovely camera-free walk,” James said after a moment of comfortable silence. He removed himself from the couch, ignoring the bemoaning from the rest of the occupants at the shift.
“I’ll come with you!” Cib jumped up eagerly from the other couch. James just shrugged as he grabbed a set of the keys to the building.
“Be back in an hour,” Steven called, slumping sideways to lay in the spot Cib was sitting in, turning over to face the ceiling, phone in hand, scrolling through Twitter idly.
The door closed behind James and Cib, leaving them to woods and road. James checked his phone for the time, before setting off past their cars and down the road. Cib followed awkwardly behind, the tone of this stroll yet to be set. The sky was clouding over, rain threatening to fall before the day was over. The air was humid and thick, edging on uncomfortable.
“There’s a pond somewhere near here. I saw it from the road. It had parking near it so I’m pretty sure it open to the public,” James mentioned. Cib nodded, “is it a good filming location?”
“I don’t know yet,” James said with a smile. Cib just rolled his eyes.
“If we have a car left over tomorrow we can try to go over with a camera,” James fiddled with the map on his phone, getting increasingly more annoyed at the spotty service, though his frustrations stayed silent.
“How do we wanna break up the groups tomorrow?”
“We already decided on our groups,” James reminded Cib.
“I know,” Cib said. James looked up from his screen and stumbled on a tree root.
“Whoa there James”
“Whoa there Steve”
James caught himself from falling, which was a welcome surprise given he was much more preoccupied with the strange echo. Only by stopping did he see where the voices came from. Through James’ body walked a ghostly version of Steven. Next to him was a similar Cib.
“Cib. Cib! Are you seeing this?” James whispered harshly. Cib looked at him oddly.
“What? You mean the branch you tripped on?” He said.
“No!” James was about to explain when all of a sudden, the ghostly Steven stopped.
“James?” it asked, turning to face where James was standing. It looked straight through him. James held his breath and waited, glancing furiously from real Cib and fake Steve. Fake Cib also stopped, glancing around in confusion, before settling his gaze on where real Cib was standing. His eyes went wide. Comically wide.
And they were gone, both fake Cib and fake Steven. Almost as if they were never there at all. Real Cib was still staring at James, who only then realized he had been ogling back.
“Are you okay?” Cib asked, concerned.
“That’s a good question. I don’t think I can answer that right now,” James looked around where they were standing, but there were no more ghostly figures. No more