“How goes the day, old soldier?”
Private Avery Inman looked up from the headstone he’d been reclining against. The crazy man was back, stomping towards Avery.
He said he was a psychic, able to commune with the dead. He saw the Memphis National Cemetery as a place to hone his skills.To Avery, he was just a nosey pain in the ass. And, oh lord, he’d brought that yappy dog with him.
“Oh, fair to middling, I suppose.” Avery answered.
“Off by yourself today?” Said the man, gasping for breath after his half-block hike from the entrance.
Avery looked up, squinting into the sun as light poured into the hole a Confederate officer had blown in his head at Fort Pillow. “By myself most days. The Sultana Boys ain’t my biggest fans.”
“Sultana Boys? Oh! Right, right! The souls from the Sultana Disaster.”
“That’d be them. Something ‘bout being buried along side a negro from the other side don’t sit too well with them.”
The psychic’s dog had started sniffing around Avery’s leg. He kicked at it, his foot passing straight through, which made it immediately piss on the psychic’s shoes.
It was the small things that made death bearable.
The Memphis National Cemetery is home to the second largest number of unknown graves of any national cemetery. Much of this is do to the extended period that the graveyard was not used during the Civil War, and it being the resting place for hundreds of nameless dead from the Fort Pillow Massacre and the Sultana Disaster.