Chapter 2 part 7

“Get yourself comfortable dear. We’ll save this document under ‘diary’.”  Ray leant over Helen to type, whilst all the time brushing against her.  Helen sat with a blank expression, watching how Ray typed.

“Why should I do this?”  Helen asked “What’s in it for me?  It seems a bit absurd that I’m just expected to write and draw, and then go home.  Why do it?”

Ray finished what he was typing and began deeply massaging Helen’s shoulders, moving closer to her neck, “otherwise I will kill you, with my own bare hands.”  Helen began feeling his hands tighten around her neck.  The pressure on her throat had got to the stage where she started coughing for air.  She started to nod profusely in acceptance whilst waving her hands in front of her.  Ray stopped and spun Helen’s chair around for her to face him.  “It wouldn’t be the first time I’d killed a lady you know.”

Helen understood, drawing away in as much as the space between them allowed, she picked up the diary and begun by opening it to the first page she could read.  She made herself comfortable at the computer as Ray stood on to watch. She thought “how would he know whether what she was writing was correct?”

“I’ll know with every line Helen.”  She hated this.  With one last indignant shake of her head, she began to write.  Ray was satisfied and quietly left the room.

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Chapter 2 part 6

Michael wanted to catch a few minutes sleep, maybe an hour or so before leaving.  After all, if Ray had given him the address then there must not have been any hurry to go there.  Everything really was… alright.  He had made his way to his bed, to him the best bed in the world, and he slowly sank down beneath the covers.  His eye lids were so heavy that they didn’t let him keep them open any longer.  His head drew back into the pillow and almost instantaneously he was in the world of dreams.

In his dreams Helen had just arrived through the front door.  She was back and Michael was very relieved that he didn’t need to find the address or this Ray person at all.  Michael threw his arms around her and began to kiss her soft skin in every area it was bare, starting from her cheeks and moving down.  He moved his way back up to her lips and just as he took his first full mouth movement he noticed a figure standing behind Helen.  It was a young man with large hazel green eyes and wavy dark hair.  He was a bit taller than Helen but not too much.  Michael drew back from her to observe the man more carefully.  “But this is Helen.” Michael said looking at the man and then Helen desperately.

“Not anymore” the man replied in the same voice Michael had heard on the phone.  Michael’s home phone began to ring, the man stood emotionless “That’ll be the phone Michael.”

And it was the phone.  Michael jumped out of his sleep to scramble for the phone.  Whilst lifting the receiver violently, he answered “yes?.”

“Michael, it’s Jane.  I just wanted to know whether you’ve found Helen yet, and if you know she’s safe.”

“Oh Jane baby, yes I have found her.  I have the address and have spoken to the guy she’s with.  Everything seems pretty alright, she’s happy and they’re expecting me.”

“I can’t believe you Michael.  You’re taking their word for it?  Don’t you know that anything can happen even within a matter of seconds?”

“Thanks for reminding me baby.  You try functioning on no sleep for three or so days.  See how effective you’d be in finding a loved one.”

“Well you don’t sound that desperate, if you manage to still be at home…”

“OK now Janie, I’d better go to find Helen at eleven o’clock, AT NIGHT!!

“Good!  The next time I phone I want to know that you’re not there to answer. Good bye.”

“Good bye.  Love…” but with that Michael heard the receiver click.  Shit she was beautiful, but damn remorselessly bossy.  He was on his way.

Chapter 2 part 5

Back at home and whilst waiting for his old clunker of a computer to warm up, Michael did manage to take a shower and make himself a hot cup of coffee.  For some reason he felt that he could think more effectively now that he was a bit more relaxed and refreshed.  With coffee in one hand he used the other to place his ergonomic exercise ball just at the right point to assume his position at the computer.  After adjusting his bottom for a few more moments Michael was ready to begin.

He began by typing Ray Chisholm, Ray Cheshire, Ray Gateway and even tried entering Ray black Mercedes.  When trying this in Google too many results came up, none of which sounded like anything or anybody who would be remotely interested in the lives of Helen and Michael.  Michael decided to make his search more local.  He entered the website of his and Helen’s university, Victoria Range University, and typed the first name ‘Ray’ into the staff directory.  Approximately thirty results arrived before Michael’s eyes. He carefully skimmed over each entry, dismissing any name which did not seem at all familiar.  After only a few short seconds Michael’s eyes rested upon Ray Grisholm.  He selected the name from the list.  Of course, this was one of the fine arts lecturers, why hadn’t Michael thought of this before?  Pausing for a few seconds… hang on, why should he have thought of an arts lecturer?  Michael’s attention moved back towards the computer where he soon realised that it was only his university contact details that were available.

To Michael’s relief, within these details was the listing of a cell phone number, sure it was the office cell phone, but cell just the same.  Michael raised his own phone and entered the number he saw on the screen.  The phone kept ringing.  He was certain he would have to speak to another answering service so as he was waiting he was busily preparing a more powerful message.  Yet, to Michael’s surprise the phone was answered at the very last ring. “Ray.”

“Hello Mr Grisholm.  This is Michael Freeman, calling in regards to Helen Donaldson.”

“Yes?” Ray’s voice remained monotone.

“Where are you?  Where have you taken her?” Michael demanded.

Calmly Ray answered “She’s with me, at my house.  I believe you have the address.”

“Well, I don’t.  Not anymore… Could you please tell me again?”

Tired, Ray opened his mouth and said “24 Green Grange Dr, Clarismont.  Is that all you wanted?”

“Yes.” replied Michael “Um, is that Clarismont with a ‘C’?”

“Yes.” responded Ray.

“Oh, ok.  Thanks, good bye.”

“See you soon” said Ray with a growing smile.  Ray turned to Helen who was standing staring at her own artistic creation “Sorry about that.  It was your friend, Michael.  We’re just giving ourselves a bit more time before he sees you again.”  Ray stopped and observed Helen’s profile, paying close attention to her eyes “so you’re not distracted.”  Ray’s face went serious and almost melancholic once more. 

“Now, as you can see my dear, this is your drawing.  I feel it’s very important that you don’t get behind with your course work, so I thought we’d bring this here for whenever you get tired of writing.”

Helen turned to Ray “What is it about this piece that you are interested in?” She was curious by this stage, because there hadn’t been a point where Ray’s moves were not calculated.

“I feel that you’re talented, and I want you to keep working.  You never know Helen, my gut feeling tells me you’re going to be a star, so you’d better keep working.”

“I don’t believe in any of that star crap, just as much as I don’t believe in any of your crap.  But I will keep working, thank you.”  Helen was on her way to sitting down at the table when Ray grabbed her arm “ah, ah, ahhhh!  Not yet my precious.  This way now.  First you need to see the book and your work station, then you need to spend a bit of time working on the transcript, and then you may work on your art.”

“But…” Helen was flabbergasted, no one ever told her how to divide her time.

“The sooner you start Helen, the sooner you finish, and the sooner you…” Ray stopped, breathed and stared at her again “…go home.”  Ray looked down at the floor and turned towards the door, “follow me.”  Helen followed.

Chapter 2 part 4

Michael arrived home, sick of Helen, sick of home and sick of everything.  He just couldn’t understand what was going on inside her head.  He wanted a shower to wash off this experience and get back to normal.  But how normal could that be when Helen wasn’t there?  Before a shower, he decided to give his girlfriend Jane a phone call, just to hear her sweet voice. 

He dialled the number and listened patiently as it took a few rings before she answered.  Then, there was her voice, which to Michael’s surprise should have been more comforting, yet it wasn’t.  It was Jane, she was lovely, but there was something missing.  “So how’s Helen?” was one of Jane’s first questions.

“Oh yeah, she’s great” replied Michael sarcastically.  “Actually, it was for that reason that I decided to ring.”

“And not to hear my voice?” Jane had a wicked sense of humour, even if she still managed to sound hurt.

“Of course, that was the main reason.  But, would you believe that Helen took off the other night, in the middle of the night, just before arriving home, she decided to go away with one of her friends?”

“No, actually I wouldn’t believe it.  Really, that’s the last thing I’d believe.  I know how she feels, especially about you…” Jane paused for a few seconds to allow Michael to absorb the information. “She definitely would not go anywhere without telling you.  Particularly when I know that she seems to want to spend every moment she can with you.”

“However, it seems like she’s finally found someone.  Isn’t that great?”

“No she wouldn’t have.  Mike she’s an obsessive introvert.  Of course she’s funny and cool, but she’s not going to go off like that….”

“I spoke to her on the phone.  She rang me back after taking a shower at whoever it was’ house… she sounded great.”

“She’s the best actor I know Michael.  You’ve got to call the police.”

“But for fuck sake, I’ve spoken to them already.  All I seem to have been doing lately is living at the cop shop.  What else am I supposed to do?”

“Mike, I’m sorry if I’ve stressed you, but you need to find her.  And do it as soon as you can.”

“Can’t I have a break?  I’ve been on this for days.”

“Mike, take a deep breath.  Did you speak to her on her mobile?”

“No, she says it’s lost, I talked to her at the place she’s staying.”

“How did you do that?”

“I had the guy’s business card.”

“Great, does it have an address on it?”

“Yes it does” replied Michael.

“Good then go there.”

“I can’t.”

“Why not?” asked Jane impatiently.

“The police have it, the business card I mean.”

“Then get it.  Hurry!”

“OK. I love you Janie!”

“I love you too sweetie, now move it!”

Michael slammed down the phone and left the house once again.  He closed the door behind him, then opened it again as if to go back inside, wondering whether or not to have a shower and a sleep, however with Jane’s words in mind, he left.

He arrived back at the police station soon after.  It was now eight thirty in the evening and as he tried to speak to Lt Hill he was told that Lt Hill had gone home and would not be back until morning.  “Can’t you give him a phone call?” pled Michael.

“No.” was the police officer’s strict answer.

Whilst trying to decide what to do, Michael tried to remember the name of the man on the card, “Ray Chisholm, Ray Cheshire, Ray…”  He picked up a phone book that was lying on a bench at the side of the room.  With this he immediately began searching for a name and address that would seem familiar.  It was impossible.  He decided to go home and see what he could find online.

Chapter 2 part 3

“You did really well” exclaimed Ray.  Ray turned his head towards Henrik who was holding a switch blade to Helen’s throat, and nodded for her release.

Helen was once again in shock, shivering firstly from the feeling of cold, sharp metal resting hard against a main artery, and shivering from the cold wet droplets trickling down her body.  Henrik had been sent into the bathroom to pull Helen out of the shower to both call Michael, and keep to Ray’s schedule.

“Now go and get dressed and I’ll see you in the parlour in two.”

“But where are my clothes?” Helen asked.

“Oh right, I forgot, your old clothes were thrown away… they had been spoiled by blood.  But, if you go back into your room and open up the wardrobe, you’ll find a pile of clothes…”  Ray stopped, smiled and gave a cheeky laugh “…and they’re just your size” he ended gazing in a different direction.  “Now, one and a half.”

Helen flew into action, running down the passageway with a dripping towel, into the bedroom and over towards the wardrobe.  Upon opening the doors, to her amazement was every style of clothing she could possibly want, stylishly cut jeans, fitted tops, shoes, skirts, dresses… “How the hell did he measure me so quickly?” Helen whispered.  Yet, aware of the time she pounced into a shorter, cargo-style summer skirt, navy blue fitted top, and pulled her hair back with a hair tie that had been placed neatly on the dressing table.  Without looking in the mirror, or making any final adjustments, Helen was back in the parlour, ready to find out what was going on.

She entered the room to find Ray sitting in a large arm chair, quite close to an over extended window.  Behind where Ray was sitting stood his loyal watch dog Henrik.  The contrast in the two was quite astounding.  Henrik must have been in his mid-thirties, with the hair and physique to have passed him for a modern day Viking.  Ray on the other hand, had been softened by the years.  His middle-aged face showed the lines of his years, his once dark hair was now filtered with grey, but his eyes, his eyes were huge hazel green pools of knowledge, and something else. 

Ray noticed her dreaming and began impatiently “sit down Helen.”  Helen sat on the nearest chair obediently.  Ray turned towards Henrik, “Henrik, you can go and make us a cup of tea”, immediately he left.  Ray remained relaxed in his chair “move your chair closer Helen, I want to speak with you.”  Once again Helen followed his directions obediently.  “Now, why do you think we have brought you here Helen?” the professor in Ray began to shine through.

“To be very honest sir, I really have no idea.  I mean I’m flattered and…”

“Flattered, even though we kidnapped you and shot two of our drivers?”

“Oh, but you didn’t shoot them, Henrik did.  I just feel perfectly safe.”

“You do?” Ray smiled “who do you think Henrik is?  He’s a puppet, my puppet, nothing more, nothing less, and if he’s shot anyone it’s because I told him to.”  Helen remained seated and calm, not quite computing what Ray was trying to explain.  “Do you understand?”

“Yes, but… no, but…” Helen still didn’t quite get it.

“You have something I want Helen.”

“But I returned your book.”

“It’s not a book Helen…” Ray was quite astounded, and somewhat disappointed that she was not, what he had believed to be conniving and intelligent.  To try a different tone this time Ray pulled his own chair towards Helen and took her hands in his, resting them on her knees. “Now Helen, what I want is inside your head,” for some reason, staring into Helen’s vacant eyes, this statement seemed painful to utter.

“In my head, but what?”

“Precisely…” Ray coughed.  Ray had completely switched to imbecile explanation mode by this time. “Now Helen, you know the book that I lent you the time before last?”

“Your journal or the photographic text?”

“The journal I am meaning.  Would there be any chance that you would be able to type up what you can read from that book?”

“But Ray, I had a problem with it.  The book seemed to skip every other page.  If I type it, it just won’t make any sense.”

“Just type it anyway.”

“Can’t you get a secretary for that?”  Helen started feeling quite insulted that she was put through this hassle to do data-entry.

“No actually I can’t, I need you to do it for me.”

“But I need to finish my picture” Helen complained.

“Don’t stress about that, it’s here in the drawing room.  When you get tired of typing you can work on your artwork.”

“You’re very organised, aren’t you?”

“I’ve planned this for a long time Helen.” With that, Ray sat back to observe her in wonder.  “Helen, what did you think of me the first time you saw me?”

Helen blushed and smiled “that’s a really straight forward question, and I’m not generally the type of person to actually tell people how I feel.”

“Just say… I’m sorry that it’s rude, but I’m just curious.”

“Well, I thought you seemed kind, intelligent, I don’t know… just that.”  Helen was about to end her sentence in “I guess” but became aware of how stupid she had already sounded up to this point.

“You do really well in all your courses, don’t you Helen?”

“I do fairly alright” Helen’s demeanour began to change, studies, work and art, she took intensely seriously.

“What spurs you on?” before Helen had a chance to answer, “You really do a lot don’t you?  You exhibit, work, study until all hours, do you have a life?”

“Art is my life!” Helen snapped with emotion, she then calmed down a bit “this is my life.  That’s why I can’t believe that I’ve been brought here… You’ve…” she began pointing “you’ve killed two people, and for what, for me to type up your fucking diary.  There’s got to be something more to it than this.  And, what about all these fucking bat-arsed questions?”

Ray sat back once again, this time much more satisfied.  Helen was here.  “Well?” Helen demanded.  “You can’t read the pages I can in the journal can you?”  Ray sat up in surprise.  “Isn’t it true?” Helen gave a measured pause then leant in to whisper “if you had have known what was written on those pages, you wouldn’t have lent me the book.”

Ray was struck by silence as Helen sat back in her chair.  At that moment Henrik entered with cups of tea and cake.  Henrik bent down to fix Helen her tea, he began to ask “how would y…” and Ray interrupted “white with one sugar… for Helen.”  Ray looked over at Helen as if to say, “isn’t it?” at this Helen slightly nodded in response.  The two did not break eye contact.  Both were painfully serious.

Ray finally removed the silence “why didn’t you say anything?”

“I thought it was fantasy and that there was nothing to say.  I thought it may have been your sick form of code language, possibly lent to me by mistake….  And, I don’t know… in a way I felt too ashamed to tell you that I had noticed.  But you can’t read it, can you?  I don’t know what I’m asking, but I have to hear it.”

“No, I can’t.  I can read the other pages, the ones that you can’t.  By the sounds of it they seem to be of the opposite nature.  Half is good and the opposite half evil.”

“Can’t anyone else read it?  Why me?”

“Whoever wrote it can read both parts.  Why you, I… I think you know.” Ray began to become restless. He picked up his tea, drank a large gulp full and placed the cup on the table.

Helen stayed silent, she didn’t know, but she too was tired of sitting.  She finished the rest of the tea she had been holding in her hands for the past several minutes, put the cup down, clasped her hands on her lap and waited for instructions.  Ray stood up and started moving towards the door “follow me.”

Chapter 2 part 2

Convinced of the black Mercedes’ return, Michael decided to take some time off work to stake out from behind his neighbour’s flower bed.  Michael had appropriately received permission from his neighbour once they were pulling out of the driveway and spotted him in their leafed monument.  He was completely prepared with bread knife, sandwich and a bottle of Evian. 

Time spent waiting was long and boring and after avoiding entering his house for the past two days, Michael somehow began to feel that whoever it was might not be coming back.  All at once he decided to venture in through the dining room window to look for clues.  No sooner had he entered the room, he noticed a business card on the kitchen table.  The card was for a Professor Ray Grisholm, with complete telephone and address details included.  On the blank piece of card was a handwritten “with compliments.”  Confused Michael picked up the card and began to dial the number.  His call was connected to an answering machine on which Michael left his hesitant message “…um, hello, I am just wondering whether Helen is there please?  Please call me, Michael, back at 260 54913.  Thank you.  Good bye.”  “Thank you?  Good bye?  Whether Helen is there?  Please? What the…?”  It all came out so simply.  Maybe there wasn’t anything to worry about.

He made his way back out the window, forgetting that in his own house he was perfectly able to exit through the door.  Approximately half an hour later he found himself at the police station once more, only this time handing over the business card to the helpful Lieutenant Hill, “Well done” exclaimed Hill.  “You’ve got the most substantial piece of evidence so far.  Have you tried ringing the number?”

“Of course!” snapped Michael.

“And what did they say?”

“Nothing… I got an answering machine.”

“Oh…” replied Hill “…well hold on a moment and I’ll try them once more.”  Hill moved in to the next room and closed the door behind him.  Michael could partially see Hill’s actions through the venetian blinds.  Hill had picked up the receiver, dialled, and waited a moment.  During his waiting Michael was convinced that Hill would have the same amount of luck that he himself had had.  There he was, beginning to say something into the phone.  Michael looked on, waiting for Hill to hang up after leaving a message. But, instead Hill held on, waiting for an answer and finally replying once more.  Michael jumped up and pounced at the window, bashing the glass for as long as it took for Hill to open the door.  To Michael’s disappointment Hill first hung up, and then opened the door.

“Was she there?  What did they say?” Michael was practically jumping out of his skin.

“It’s alright.  Case is closed.  Yes, Helen is there and everything’s fine.  She’s in the shower at the moment, but if you would like to wait a few minutes she’ll call you back when she gets out…”  Hill smiled and drew back a desk chair “would you like to sit here while you wait?”

“Yes please” Michael replied in complete disbelief.  He didn’t know whether Hill was lying or whether he should walk out of the station never to talk to Helen again.  “How could she put me through this without calling?”

“Just take it easy,” Hill added “sometimes things like this happen when you’re having fun and you lose track of time.”

Now Michael definitely felt something was wrong, Helen had called, she was on her way home.  Nevertheless, he sat and waited.  Several minutes later Hill came back with a glass of water and a coffee just at that moment the phone rang.

Michael’s response was delayed, he didn’t know whether to take it or not.  Without giving him much time to think Hill had placed down the cup and picked up the receiver, automatically raising it to Michael’s ear.  “Err, hello?”

“Hello, Michael?  Is that you?” it was definitely Helen’s voice.

“Helen, where the hell are you?  Why did you do this to me?  I’ve been staking out for two days, running back and forth like a lunatic to the police station.”

“Well, I didn’t actually arrange for this to happen…” Helen began impatiently “I met someone and we took off rather suddenly.  I’ve lost my cell phone and didn’t get the opportunity to call you before now…” there was a pause “…sorry.”

“No, I’m sorry.  I’m so sorry I took time off work and almost had a heart attack worrying about you, knowing now that you’ve just gone wherever the wind’s taken you.”

“It’s not like that…”

“Don’t bother!” with that Michael slammed down the phone.

Chapter 2 part 1

When Helen awoke there was the faint smell of food cooking.  Perhaps it was pasta or roast vegetables.  Not knowing how long it had been since she’d last eaten, she rose automatically from the bed.  It took her two steps to realise that she was now wearing different clothes, a nightgown in fact. She instantly grabbed the covers.  No one was around to tell her where she was.  Until this moment Helen hadn’t cared where she was.  She needed to look for her clothes, to get food and to get out.  A strange order she thought, however so far she hadn’t been hurt apart from the damage of whatever that chemical would do.  Her memories seemed hazy, as if they were a dream and as if none of it had happened.  Unfortunately, for the strong minded Helen, she knew however that it had happened.  Before, she had experienced the same reaction to anaesthetics in hospitals. It always takes double the average amount of pre-med to have any effect at all.  Was that Ray she had seen?  That just had to be a dream.  Sometimes familiar faces arrive in the strangest thoughts. 

From where she was standing she looked around the room in vain, as if by pure chance she would spot her clothes hanging neatly from a rail somewhere.  The room was large and dark, with only the dim bedside lamp to light it.  Helen could see small portions of light attempting to sneak in through the heavy curtains.  The floor consisted of boards of deep redwood whilst the walls were of stone.  This must have been old, and the bed appeared to have been in the house for as long as it stood.  Although the room looked cold it was surprisingly warm.  Warmth radiated from the royal red covers Helen had wrapped around her and the floor boards themselves felt heated.

The hunger had become unbearable, unbearable to the point where Helen conceded that whoever had changed her would have seen everything anyway.  Even if this thought made her shudder with horror, not at her privacy being invaded but at her spare tyres being revealed, she needed to eat.  With that she clung on to the covers and ventured into the passageway.

Again the entire scenario seemed a huge cliché, the long passageway, the large mansion, uncountable rooms.  What Helen could not get over was the warmth.  The passage was carpeted and the spaces were flooded with sunlight, sunlight which would have been beautiful had it not have been for Helen’s headache from hell.  She tried to find the kitchen by following her nose, yet the mission took longer than expected.  She kept forgetting where she was going and what she was doing.  The only reminder of her purpose was her now burning stomach.

In an instant Helen could sense someone behind her and suddenly a hand was on her shoulder.  “Where are you going?” It was Henrik’s blunt voice.

“I… I…I… nnnneed foo…” She could hardly draw a word from her mouth.  She was paralysed with fear and positive at this stage that she would hear laughter and see the barrel of a gun.

“Here…” Henrik turned her shoulders around “this way.”  He led her by the hand in the opposite direction, to an even brighter looking area.  The room was so bright in fact, that Helen needed to shut her eyes upon entering, and then as she slowly opened them again she saw a breakfast table laid out.  There was orange juice and coffee, croissants, fruit and toast.

“Is it morning?” Helen asked with a sudden calmness.

“Actually, it’s five o’clock in the afternoon.  You’ve slept for one and a half days.”

Helen stopped for a moment and thought, “but, what the… Michael will be worried about me.  Where am I?  And what the…?” Helen paused, finally unable to keep her eyes off the food “But, I can stay at least for breakfast.”  Helen again expected to hear laughter, only this time because of her wit.  There was silence. 

She moved so fast towards the chair that she hardly noticed it herself.  The coffee was fresh and the bread just toasted.  The entire meal was as if it had just been laid out.  “But…” Helen was about to mention this to Henrik when he interrupted.

“I was given strict instructions to have everything perfectly ready for when you woke up, even if it meant making breakfast every hour for the last twenty hours.”

“But, you don’t make breakfast…” Helen exclaimed bluntly “…you kill people.”  Henrik’s face remained straight.  “Who told you to make the breakfast by the way?”

“I believe you already know him.  Just eat your food.”  Henrik seemed to have lost his lethal sense of humour, thank gosh.

Helen noticed Henrik’s serious expression as he stared at her once more.  Once her hunger had subsided after eating five pieces of toast and two croissants she was ready to ask “why are you so serious?  What are you thinking about?”

“I’m not obliged to answer what you ask, but what I would like to say is this, never in my career have I come across someone so calm… despite the shock.” Henrik suddenly added “who has witnessed anything you saw me do yesterday.”  Henrik paused and calculated for a moment, “aren’t you afraid?”

“Well, when you die, you die” Helen concluded.  This didn’t seem to amuse Henrik, in fact as Helen looked up from her plate again she noticed him quite disturbed.  “Now what do you want, and how long do I have to be here?”

“You need to wait until he gets back and then you may discuss this topic with him” by now Henrik was staring ahead.  He seemed to want nothing more to do with Helen.

“Well now, if you don’t mind I need to go pee, and a shower would be great.”  Helen raised herself from the table “where’s the bathroom?”

“Next to your room” Henrik responded.

“Thanks” whispered Helen grudgingly, as if she were once again a school child who had been made to apologise to the person whom she had recently hit.

Helen made her way to the bathroom.  When entering the white tiled space she noticed that soap and towels were provided for.  Everything had been arranged perfectly in anticipation of her use.  She took in a deep breath and began to carelessly close the door behind her when it stopped.  She looked in the mirror to see that inside the doorway stood Ray.  She turned around and by this time he stood almost pressed against her.  Helen gasped in surprise.  “It was you.”

Ray began to laugh, “Of course.  The stuff that knocked you out must have been pretty strong, hah?  With a bit of research we found out that your dosage generally can kill a small bull.”  Helen just kept staring at Ray, first at his chest and then into his eyes.  His stare was deep in return, so intense that his smile disappeared into an undecided mouth gesture.  Helen should have been scared, but she wasn’t.  She wished he would stay.  With that thought Ray drew back and left.  On his way down the passage, without turning around he called “see you in fifteen.”  Helen closed the door.