The Grownup: A Story by the Author of Gone Girl

The Grownup: A Story by the Author of Gone Girl

Gillian Flynn

Language: English

Pages: 64

ISBN: 0804188971

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The Grownup: A Story by the Author of Gone Girl

Gillian Flynn

Language: English

Pages: 64

ISBN: 0804188971

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Gillian Flynn’s Edgar Award-winning homage to the classic ghost story, published for the first time as a standalone

A canny young woman is struggling to survive by perpetrating various levels of mostly harmless fraud. On a rainy April morning, she is reading auras at Spiritual Palms when Susan Burke walks in. A keen observer of human behavior, our unnamed narrator immediately diagnoses beautiful, rich Susan as an unhappy woman eager to give her lovely life a drama injection. However, when the "psychic" visits the eerie Victorian home that has been the source of Susan’s terror and grief, she realizes she may not have to pretend to believe in ghosts anymore. Miles, Susan’s teenage stepson, doesn’t help matters with his disturbing manner and grisly imagination. The three are soon locked in a chilling battle to discover where the evil truly lurks and what, if anything, can be done to escape it.

“The Grownup,” which originally appeared as “What Do You Do?” in George R. R. Martin’s Rogues anthology, proves once again that Gillian Flynn is one of the world’s most original and skilled voices in fiction.

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benevolent thing was fer the berds. I was starting to think this kid might be a good partner. This tiny teen needed a grown-up to move in the world, and there was nothing a con girl could use more than a great con kid. “What do you do?” people would ask, and I’d say, “I’m a mom.” Think of what I could get away with, the scams I could pull, if people thought I was a sweet little mom. Plus that Bloodwillow convention sounded really cool. We pulled into the motel three hours later, just as Miles

Milky Way—and looked ten years younger. I could picture her as a kid, a bookworm maybe, pretty but shy. Demanding parents. Straight As, always. “So what do you read off me?” “There’s something going on in your house.” “I already told you that.” I could feel the desperation coming off her: to believe in me. “No, you told me your life was falling apart. I’m saying it’s something to do with your house. You have a husband, I sense a lot of discord: I see you surrounded by a sick green, like an egg

stepped inside. I shivered dramatically. “Do you feel this? Do you feel the…heaviness here?” “I hate this room.” She nodded. “I’ll need to pay extra attention to this room,” I said. I’d park myself in it for an hour at a time and just read, read whatever I wanted. We went back into the hall, which was now dark again. Susan sighed and began flipping on lights. I could hear a patter of feet upstairs, running manically up and down the hallway. We passed a closed door to my right. Susan knocked at

stepped inside. I shivered dramatically. “Do you feel this? Do you feel the…heaviness here?” “I hate this room.” She nodded. “I’ll need to pay extra attention to this room,” I said. I’d park myself in it for an hour at a time and just read, read whatever I wanted. We went back into the hall, which was now dark again. Susan sighed and began flipping on lights. I could hear a patter of feet upstairs, running manically up and down the hallway. We passed a closed door to my right. Susan knocked at

the elder dark-haired, black-eyed with a slight smirk and his head tilted at a knowing angle. Miles. The elder boy looked like Miles. Not a perfect match, but the essence was exact: the smugness, the superiority, the threat. Miles. If you remove the bloody floorboards and water-stained tiles; if you destroy the beams that held Robert Carterhook’s body, and you tear down the walls that absorbed the screams, do you take down the house? Can it be haunted if the actual guts—its internal organs—have

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