Summary: AU: The Harmons are ghosts and the Langdons are the new owners of the Murder House. Over time, Tate and Violet begin to fall for each other. Violet's POV
I had been dead in this house for over two and a half years now. Ever since my mother had a heart attack, my dad hung himself out of grief, and I committed suicide two weeks prior to both these incidents, there had not been a single new family in this house.
Did this depress me? Yeah. You could say that.
I longed for someone to talk to, someone my own age. Every day for me was endless. I played hide-and-seek with the kids and Beau, helped Moira keep the house spotless for the next owners, and read old books that had apparently belonged to Charles Montgomery, one of the original owners of the house. He had allowed me to borrow some books from his personal library. They were gruesome – Charles had a disturbing Frankenstein complex – but I liked them. I liked creepy things.
One day in late August, I heard the front door creak open, followed by footsteps. I heard voices. I decided to check things out for myself.
I crept downstairs, suddenly overcome with excitement and curiosity. Imagine! People in this house! Actual, warm-blooded human beings! I hadn't been in contact with real humans for what seemed like ages, unless you count that night when I chased two ten year old boys away from the house on Halloween night of last year.
I reach the bottom of the stairs, sit down on the second-last step and take a look at the strangers who, for whatever reason, have chosen to enter this house.
There are three people standing in the entrance hall. Marcy, the plump middle-aged lady who sold us this house. But there are also two other people standing there, both of whom I do not recognize.
A boy with slightly curly blonde hair around my age is standing with his hands in his pockets, looking sullen. He has deep, dark eyes and wears clothes that make him look like he just took a time machine back from the 90s. Hate to say it, but he was a bit of a looker.
A woman, who I expect is the boy's mother, walks around, taking in the long hallway. She has curly blonde hair just like her son, with one or two grey streaks. She has his eyes, I notice immediately. She holds herself in the proud kind of manner that screams, "Mess with me and I'll fuck you up."
"And these are real Tiffany lanterns," Marcy exclaims, gesturing to the ceiling above.
The woman gasps. "My,my. I haven't seen these in such a long time..."
I tune out of the conversation after that. I don't want to hear Marcy trying to lure another unsuspecting family into this house. I wonder vaguely how this mother and son will meet their untimely end, just like the rest of us here, when the boy rounds the corner.
I jump foolishly, even though he can't see me. He's texting on his phone, grinning to himself. I stare at him, thinking. Maybe we could be friends, this new boy and I. I quickly cast that thought away.
'Don't be ridiculous, Vi,' I tell myself. 'There's no way you could be friends with somebody...alive.'
I sigh to myself and make my way upstairs to the attic – maybe I could play ball with Beau or something, leaving the new family to their Murder House tour.
"Violet, Violet!" Margaret runs into the attic a few days later. "Guess what?"
I look up from my book. "What?"
"There's a new family moving in!" Margaret squeals with excitement. "I have to go tell Angie! See you!" She beams at me before disappearing into thin air.
I blink. I knew just who this new family could be, of course.
I run to the grimy attic window. Sure enough, there is a huge removal van parked outside the house, with removal men bringing in boxes of the new family's possessions. The boy is helping them.
Mom appears from behind me. "Poor things," she murmurs sadly. "They don't know what they're getting themselves into."
"Yeah," I agree quietly. "Who are they? I mean...what are their names?"
"They're mother and son," she tells me. "Constance and Tate Langdon. That's what Moira told me, anyway."
"Oh." I turn around suddenly to grin at her. "So, are we going to give them the usual 'Murder House' welcome or what? Scare them a little?"
Mom shakes her head. "I don't think so, honey. They seem like...a nice little family."
I grit my teeth. "That's why they should be chased out of here as soon as possible. Before it's too late."
Mom purses her lips and walks silently from the room.
It only takes a day or two for the Langdons to settle in to the Murder House. Constance Langdon seems to have made the place her own, decorating the place with pictures of her and her son, and a dark-haired girl.
Over these short days, I begin to find out more and more about Tate Langdon. He covers his room in Nirvana and Kurt Cobain posters, and turns his stereo up so high that Nora mutters about 'ridiculous young people music' and gets as far away from the premises as possible.
It is late Saturday afternoon, and once again, I am bored out of my mind. I decide to take a peek around Tate's room, look through his CD collection – which consists mainly of Kurt Cobain – and his wardrobe- which is full of indie-style clothes.
I sit on a black beanbag in the corner of the room, and flick through a porno magazine Tate stupidly left lying around. I groan in disgust and throw it away.
I hear yelling from downstairs. A boys voice shouts: "Fuck off, mom! Stop controlling my fucking life!"
Footsteps stomp up the stairs, and within seconds the bedroom door slams open. Tate walks in, looking so agitated and wrapped up in whatever pathetic human problem he's going through that he doesn't even notice me sitting in the corner.
He runs his hands through his hair and sits on the bed, burying his head in his hands.
Without thinking, I say, "So you're the new kid."
Tate whips around to face me. His eyes are red from crying. "W-what –"
"Tate Langdon, right?" I continue.
"Who are you?" He demands, standing up.
I smirk at him. "Trust me, you don't want to know anything about me."
He glowers at me, clearly not taking this as a proper answer. "Tell me who you are right now! What are you doing in my room?"
I shrug, unfazed by his threatening tone. "I live a few houses down the street. Just thought I'd...take a look around here."
Tate still looks wary, but doesn't protest. "Er, I'm Tate. Tate Langdon."
"Nice to meet you," I reply. I step over and shake his hand. For a moment, I'm almost alarmed by how warm he feels – I haven't been in contact with a human person for what seems like ages, you see. "I'm Violet Harmon."
Tate opens his mouth to respond, but he is interrupted when his bedroom door bursts open. His mother, Constance Langdon, stands in the doorway looking livid.
She marches over to him and shouts, "Tate Langdon, who the hell do you think you are-"
Tate clears his throat, looking awkward. "Mom-" He glances over at me, ready to say something about my presence, but Constance saw me herself.
Her eyes widen. She looks embarrassed for a second or two. "Hello, young miss. And who are you, might I ask?" She smiles at me, but her eyes are as menacing as a cobra's before he goes in for the kill.
"I'm Violet Harmon," I tell her. "I-"
"She's just a...friend, mom," Tate cuts me off.
Constance blinks, then turns to her son. "A...a friend?" She looks shocked. "My goodness, Tate! You've made a friend here already! You didn't have many friends at your old school, I mean-"
"Mom," Tate whines, his cheeks turning a rosy colour.
She grins at him, then turns back to me. "Do you go to Westfield High School, Violet?" She smiles at me again, and thankfully her eyes have lost their furious glint. "That's the school Tate will be attending. He starts there soon. Tell me, is it a good school?"
I swallow back hard. "No, ma'am, I don't go to Westfield High," I lie. "I'm home-schooled."
Constance looks genuinely disappointed. "Oh, that's a shame. I was hoping Tate would have a friend at school..."
Tate rolls his eyes from behind his mother. "Mom, it's fine. I'll make new friends."
Yeah, living friends, I think.
Constance nods, however she still looks slightly upset. I figure something bad must have happened to Tate at his old school.
She looks at Tate, then at me, then back. "I'll leave you two kids alone, then." She smiles at us both and leaves the room, shutting the door behind her.
"Sorry about that," Tate sighs, looking sheepish.
"It's okay," I say. "Your mom seems...nice."
"You haven't seen her at her worst," he mutters.
I don't know how to respond to that, so I ask him out of mild interest, "Why did you move here?"
Tate looks kind of surprised at my question. Then, his face twists into a sad expression, and he avoids my eyes.
"My mom..." he begins in a strained voice. "She...she wanted to make a fresh start. We moved here from Virginia. My sister, Addie...she was killed."
I bite my lip. I feel an immense surge of sympathy for Tate. "I'm sorry. I really am. How-how did it happen?"
"Hit and run," Tate growls, his sorrow swiftly changing to anger. He clenches his fists. "Some drunk bastards run her over on Halloween night. Didn't even stop the car to see if she was okay. For weeks after, I wanted to go out and find them. Track them down and kill them. I never did, though. Track them down, I mean. And anyways, even if I did...I wouldn't have the balls to kill them."
I nod silently. "I'm...I'm really sorry, Tate."
"It's fine," he says quietly. He sits on his bed and glares at the floor for no apparent reason. "So, um, where are your parents? What's your story?" He seems genuinely interested.
I make up a story quickly in my head. "My parents are dead. My mom died of a heart attack, and my dad hanged himself afterwards out of grief. I live with my older sister and her boyfriend."
"Oh," Tate replies simply. "Sorry."
"It's okay," I say.
Tate and I chatted for a couple of hours afterwards, and we came to know each other better. How he had an obsession with Kurt Cobain – like I couldn't already tell from his bedroom wall and CD collection I had nosed through earlier. Also, how he hated high school and couldn't wait to get out of there.
The clock struck six pm, and Constance called from downstairs, "Tate! Dinner!"
Tate yelled back, "Coming, mom!" He turned to me. "You want to stay for dinner? My mom won't mind."
I shook my head. "No, sorry. I've got to get back to my sister. She'll be wondering where I am."
Tate nodded, and I was taken aback to see that he looked upset that I had to leave. "Okay. Stop by some time, okay? Don't be a stranger." He grins at me, flashing me some pearly white teeth.
I beam back at him, say my goodbyes, and pretend to leave the house.
A/N: Hope you liked that! Please write a review if you would like me to write more, if you liked this chapter, if you hated this chapter, etc. :D