Dark Side Out

Terry Ortega and Ginny Chung
Paul Wellman

The haunting began when the unrelenting heat of September bled into the humid days of October. Giant spiders gathered first, hunkered in corners, straddling their webs. A tacky, sweet smell permeated the air, chocolate-tinged. Walls and windows lay back for skulls and black-cape-clad bones to creep in and hang out in doorways. But the laughter spilling out of Terry Ortega’s office just meant Día de los Muertos, the most important holiday of the year, was prime, an annual remembrance of Nana and Tata, who left the world so long ago.

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