Tag Archives: Jason and the Friendly Ghost

Jason and the Friendly Ghost….

6 Apr

Next up on the GSP Wee Folk Promo we haveVioletta Antcliff.


Violetta Antcliff has been a member of the Nottingham Writers’ Club for the best part of Twenty years. She is the winner of numerous short story competitions and was area short listed in Waterstone’s WOW factor story competition. She took first prize in Nottingham short story competition with a story called Irish Mouse Tales and has read her poetry and short stories on local radio.

Her book that we are highlighting today is, Jason and the Friendly Ghost, from Antcliff’s Jason series.


Tommy is a boy who died at the beginning of World War II, and has returned to look for his parents. Wayne, Jason’s best friend, takes some convincing that Tommy is a ghost, as he seems so normal. But the appearances and disappearances soon convince Wayne. The problem is: how can they tell Tommy that he is dead?


  An Unusual Present

     Christmas Day—presents had been opened, the turkey carved, crackers pulled and the pudding set ablaze. Jason still had one present left to unwrap; it was from his granny Foster. He knew it would be something knitted, it always was, and by the size of the parcel he’d guessed it would be gloves and that’s why he’d left it until the last to be opened. But it wasn’t gloves, or anything else he recognized.
     “What’s this supposed to be?” he asked holding it at arm’s length, a puzzled look on his face. “It looks like a tea cosy? I think Gran’s made a mistake Mum, this must be a present for you.”
     His mother, with a sigh of exasperation, took the woolly out of his hand and pulled it down over his head.
     “That’s what it’s for,” she said, “it’s what’s known as a balaclava; it’s to keep your head warm.”
     “I can’t wear that.” Jason struggled to pull it off. “If I went to school in that everybody would laugh at me and if the police saw me I’d get arrested, they’d think I was a bank robber.”
     Mr. Foster looked at his wife and shook his head. “Mum’s obviously been sorting through her old knitting patterns again,” he sighed, “I wonder what she’ll come up with next?”
     Alison, Jason’s sister, wasn’t listening. For the best part of ten minutes she’d sat with a smile on her face, and faraway look in her eyes. “Ma-a-m,” she drawled. “Can I have my ears pierced?”
     “No.” Both parents answered her at once.
     “Why not? Everybody in my class has got pierced ears.”
     “Tracy hasn’t,” whispered Jason.
     His sister shot him a warning glance. “She doesn’t count,” she whispered back.
     “Both your mother and I have said no, so that’s the end of it.”
     Knowing better than to argue with her father, Alison gave a loud huff and flounced off to her bedroom
     Jason guessed she would stay there sulking until it was time for tea. He looked round for something to do, sitting quietly and twiddling his thumbs wasn’t exactly what he’d had in mind for an exciting Christmas. They usually had friends over or went visiting, but his mum for some reason had said for a change this year, they would have a quiet Christmas.
     Jason picked up one of his presents, it was a book. He flicked through the pages, before tossing it to the floor. It wasn’t one he would have chosen for a boy nearly eleven, but he knew he would still have a thank you letter to write later on.
     He strolled over to the window; outside it was freezing cold and everything was covered in a thick coating of frost. He wondered if anyone would be playing football on the top rec. He fancied a kick around, but being Christmas Day he expected everybody would be indoors playing with their presents. Still he thought it might be worth a try, there was always the chance that he would meet somebody who fancied a game.
     “Mum, if I wrap up warm, can I go out for a bit?”
     His mother nodded her consent. She was in the middle of watching a Christmas weepy on TV and although she had seen it many times before, she still sat with a box of tissues by her side.
     With gloves on his hands, a scarf round his neck and the knitted balaclava stuffed in his pocket, Jason quietly closed the front door behind him and set off for the top rec.
     Apart from a small girl pushing a doll’s pram and one of the neighbours taking her dog for a walk, he met no one else he knew as he sauntered along.
     The trees in the park sparkled with frost and the grass scrunched underfoot, but Jason didn’t notice, for as he’d expected there was no one around. He was just going to leave when he heard a creaking noise coming from the play area; full of curiosity, he went to investigate. The noise was being made by a swing in need of oil. A boy of roughly his own age sat on it, dragging his feet slowly backward and forward on the ground as he swung.
     Jason walked toward him and the boy raised his head and smiled. “Hi, I didn’t know anyone else was around,” he said. “Didn’t notice you creeping up, do you live round here?”
     Jason nodded his head, climbed up onto the swing next to him and began bending and straightening his knees in a steady rhythm, working up the swing. He paused just long enough to say: “Yes, Acorn Drive, number thirty-six.”
     “Don’t know it,” the boy returned, and changed from sitting to standing and swinging in competition. And it wasn’t long before the laughter of the pair of them was ringing out across the deserted playground.
     After a while all the exertion left Jason in a cold sweat, and he called for a truce admitting defeat.
     But the raw wind soon had him shivering, and it wasn’t long before his nose was dripping and his ears tingling. He was tempted to take the balaclava out of his pocket and put it on, but was afraid that if he did his new pal would laugh at him, so instead he fished a tissue out of his pocket and blew his nose. “I’m freezing,” he said flapping his arms round his shoulders, “aren’t you?”
     “Yea, I’m perished,” said the boy, and pulling a khaki balaclava out of his pocket began forcing it over his head
     Jason was gob smacked. “I’ve got one of them,” he gasped. “Did your gran knit it for you?”
     “No, my mum.”
     Jason wondered if his gran knew something he didn’t, if perhaps it was a new trend. He didn’t mind wearing his now he’d seen someone else wearing one.