Chapter 6 part 3

Lt Hill could not believe how the police officer on duty had let Helen get passed.

“I’m sorry Lt Hill, I don’t know how she did either. She just smiled and went and I thought nothing of it. I’d just lost concentration.”

“How the hell could you have lost concentration on such a simple task, man?”

“But weren’t you going to let her go anyway? She’s not a criminal is she?”

“Yes, she was going to go home. But the point was that I told you not to let her go at least while I was on the phone.”

“Sorry,” mumbled the humbled police officer.

Lt Hill shook his head, as if to let the officer know he was hopeless. “Just get out of here and don’t let me see your face for the rest of the day.”

The police officer left the office. Lt Hill walked back around his desk, sat carefully on his chair, not knowing why he wanted to keep Helen there in the first place. He supposed that she had every right to leave, and just shook his head once more as he attempted to resume his paper work once more.

Helen had arrived at the house she had shared with Michael and Jane. She tried turning the front door knob with her hand, but noticed it was locked. In her mind, she saw the bolt going through the door into the latch, and watched it unlatch and move back towards its unlocked resting position. She now tried the door again and it opened willingly. She entered the front door and stood for a while in the main living room. She scanned the room from where she was standing to see whether Michael or Ray had been there. She could see the particle tracks from where police had entered the house and moved towards the bedrooms. She followed the tracks to her room to see that they had rummaged through her belongings, and based on the condition of her underwear drawer, had found her diary. She looked towards the foot of her bed and saw the packed suitcases, and remembered her intended trip to Fiji. She moved out of the room and towards the telephone, where on the answering machine flashed the stored messages light.

Thinking of pressing the button, the answering machine started playing, “You have…” pause “five new messages… message one, received at five twenty-three p.m… ‘Hi, Michael? It’s Lt Hill, we’ve found Helen. She’s here at the police station safe and sound, although a little shaken up. I’ll try ringing your cell. Bye.’… message two ‘Michael, she’s not on the plane is she? I’m coming home and will be on the flight that arrives at eleven thirty-five the day after tomorrow. Be there! I’ll call your cell.” Helen smiled, that was all she wanted to hear.

She made her way through the kitchen noticing Henrik’s particle trail which had entered through the window, circled the kitchen and moved through the lounge room and had wondered what his mission had been. As she turned around to move back towards the bedrooms she was startled to see Mandrake standing right in front of her. “What do you want? I thought you were waiting at the house,” Helen demanded irritated.

“I just wanted to see how you were going” Mandrake smiled, looking deep into Helen’s eyes to see whether he could see answers before Helen would say them.

“I’m going fine. I have a few leads, and have a feeling that I will find Ray before too long.”

“You have a feeling!” Mandrake snapped and hit the wall beside them. “You shouldn’t have feelings, you should know! You should have them! Why the hell can’t you sense them?”

“I just can’t!” Helen yelled back. The blinds of the windows drew down with full force and a bedroom reading lamp turned on behind them aiming straight at Mandrake’s head.

“How could this have happened? How could this have possibly happened?” Mandrake asked exasperatingly.

“I don’t know. All I know is that as things are I can’t trace Ray. He’s under a shadow and has dragged Michael under with him. I’ve got to do this manually.”

“Get going then.” Mandrake ordered, while holding her close to him so that she couldn’t move, “Go on, we have a deadline,” he repeated, smirking and still not letting her pass.

By this time Helen was getting used to her state, and had begun to feel the same as she had earlier during her life. She looked into Mandrake’s eyes partly irritated and partly disgusted, with no feelings for him what so ever. She could see that he sensed this as the smile disappeared from his face. “Don’t waste time.” He withdrew, “Go now.” He turned and disappeared into the shadows around the corner.

Helen knew she would catch up with Jane, and ultimately Michael, at the latest by eleven thirty-five, now tomorrow, as it was one thirty in the morning. But preferably she would find Ray earlier. She walked over to the telephone, remembered Michael’s number and started dialling. She started seeing the signals running through the wires, being transferred into signals via towers and satellites, which were directed back towards some direction on earth, but by the time it was reaching the suburbs again she would get confused and had no idea of where it was. She heard the ring tone beeping persistently through the handset, but noone was answering.

 

******

 

Michael stared at the phone that pulsed the word ‘home’ on the display. “What should I do?” he turned to Ray.

“Don’t answer it” was Ray’s blunt reply. By now they were resting in the corner of a make shift free time club on the other side of the city. It was where Ray occasionally came to teach painting to under privileged children for one of his good friends. Fortunately he had the spare key that his friend had given him just in case she lost hers. Ray knew they would be fairly safe here as Helen didn’t know about it.

“Why the hell would she be ringing, particularly from our home phone?”

“She wants to get a trace, so don’t answer it.” Ray informed.

“What like the police?”

“Yes, just like the police. She can trace telephone signals, and this is made much easier if you answer the phone. So don’t answer! Don’t even cut the call off!”

“Shit!” Michael threw the phone down.

“Careful!” Ray looked at the phone which was still ringing. He had to admit to himself that he was tempted to answer the phone. Part of him couldn’t wait to see her again, and part of him knew he had to wait.

“Why doesn’t she just leave us alone now? She’s got what she wanted, why would she be bothering us?”

“She wants me.” Ray stated simply with a smile. Once again, Ray’s reverence bothered Michael.

“Why?”

“Just get some sleep,” Ray exclaimed. I’ll tell you more once we’ve had some rest.

“Sleep? How?” Michael couldn’t see how he could get comfortable on the old tiled carpet floor.

“Lean against me,” Ray offered. Michael winced. “Don’t worry, I won’t try anything. The extra warmth will help us both sleep.” With that, Michael steadily tried to find a position against Ray’s shoulder. He found a spot where his head rested nicely whilst his body was comfortably far enough away from Ray’s. Ray in turn rested his head against the wall under the window.

Before long Michael started dreaming. Everything was back to normal with him, Jane and Helen again. They were organising snacks in the kitchen in preparation to watch a movie. The lights were on and Michael could sense that it would be dark outside. He looked at the kitchen clock and saw that the time was thirteen minutes past two. He began to think that maybe it was too late to start watching a movie but Helen and Jane were finalising the popcorn and beverages and had no intention of changing plans. The next moment the three were sitting on the lounge room sofa, then in the next flash Michael was passionately kissing Helen, getting ready to put himself inside her. Jane was nowhere in consciousness or sight. Suddenly he realised that they were a part of the movie, and that Helen was Ray. Michael was staring directly at Ray, whom Michael knew was Helen. Ray smiled as he mentally pushed a biro Michael had been using into Michael’s stomach. Michael woke before he had the chance to feel the pain.

He woke up to realise that he had still been resting on Ray’s shoulder. Ray seemed to be fast asleep. Michael knew it had been a dream but didn’t feel comfortable about resting back on Ray’s shoulder. He spotted an old comfortable chair at the other side of the room next to some bookshelves. He got up and took his phone with him. As he rested down on the chair he checked his phone to see what the time was. He viewed the missed call text showing “1 new number,” which then displayed “home,” and was presented with the time. It was two thirty five. As he put his phone back in his pocket he looked up to see that there was clear view from the chair to the street outside. Thinking he’d seen a flash of Helen looking in the window, he looked again to see that noone was there. Even still, he ended up taking the seat cushion off the chair and laying it directly under the window, a little away from Ray’s feet to ensure that noone looking in the window could see him. He rested his head back down on the cushion and fell to sleep once more.

Michael opened his eyes to see that he was staring straight out the window from the chair next to the book shelves. He was certain that he had moved to be under the window, and became very fearful of what he would see out the window, and much worse, what could see him. As he attempted to gain strength to get out of the chair before someone could spot him, he realised that he did not have enough energy to move. He couldn’t even turn his head away from the window. To his terror Helen was staring straight in the window, with white to blue skin and black pupils. Her hands were outstretched reaching towards him.

Somehow, although he could not move his gaze from Helen, he could see that Ray was no longer in the corner of the room. He panicked for Ray’s safety, and tried to scream to warn him that Helen was there, but his mouth didn’t move and nothing would come from his throat. Suddenly when he was granted the movement of swallowing he saw someone approaching from behind Helen. He thought at first that it was one of those shadow men but then with clarity he saw Ray as he hooked his arm around Helen’s throat. Suddenly Helen’s undead looking face was in the room, directly in front of Michael’s. He felt the wet, cold texture of her skin and jolted from his sleep.

He had been dreaming again. Michael woke to find his hot, sweaty head resting against the old cushion and heard the clattering and clunking of a bunch of eight year olds streaming through a not so distant door. He sat up with a start to see whether Ray was still sleeping. Ray was nowhere to be seen. However, before long Michael heard Ray’s cheerful morning voice, and smelled some freshly brewed coffee. This was a relief to Michael, who couldn’t think of a decent way of explaining to the child care worker exactly why he had been sleeping in their activity room.

“You know how it is,” he heard Ray say in a carefree fashion.

“Yes,” said a doubtful but also cheerful older female’s voice “…or at least, I know you dear.” With that they both laughed.

Some kids had already entered the room in which Michael had just woken up. Two boys, a short chubby boy with scruffy short-cut brown hair and a taller skinny African-American boy with a huge afro hairstyle, spotted him immediately and started approaching, staring at him as if he were an alien. Just in the nick of time Ray and his friend entered the room, his friend introducing the boys to Michael.

“Boys, Michael is here today to tell you one of the Old Norse epics.” Ray gave her a quick glance as if to ask “What?”

Michael, almost as shocked thought quickly, “Yes, I will tell you the tale of Thor.” Ray looked at Michael bluntly as his friend continued to smile. “Or at least, today I’ll introduce you to Thor, and even some of the history of the Old Norse epics. But because the stories are so long I will have to return to tell the full tale.”

Ray’s friend clapped her hands, “Oh good! Oh, and by the way, I’m Veronica, Ray and I go way back.” Michael looked at her, a thin woman, with sun blown aging skin and a sporty greying hairstyle. Then he looked at Ray, “Oh, it wasn’t like that! Oh dear, Ray had other priorities unfortunately.” She laughed, and Michael laughed as if it was what he was meaning by staring.

“I’m sorry Veronica, we don’t have much time,” Ray exclaimed.

“But surely you do have time enough for Michael to at least introduce the Old Norse epics. You are an English lecturer, am I right? That’s what Ray introduced you as…” Veronica’s smile had changed into a worried and disappointed gesture.

“Ray,” Michael started, semi-speaking to the boys, “we are here after all to speak to the kids. I can start now while you go and get me a cup of coffee.”

Ray paused for a moment, “OK, I’ll get the coffee and you get a move on.”

“So,” Michael began, “Can anybody tell me what the term ‘Old Norse’ means?” The children by now had sat down on the floor around him. They were silent for a few moments, confused by the term, so Michael decided to break the term down, “Old… what does old mean?”

“Like a grandma!” a little girl with white-blond pig-tailed hair began and giggled.

“Yes!” Michael said “Old, that has been around for a few years, old, not young. When someone is about eighty years old, maybe like your grandma or great grandma, then sometimes people call them old. You are young. Great! Now, how about Norse?”

“It rhymes with horse,” a bigger bullish looking boy chuckled.

“It’s almost like Porsche,” a ginger haired girl with freckles giggled.

“Isn’t it a code that they used when the Titanic was sinking?” a tiny, scraggly-haired girl queried.

“No, not quite, that was Morse… Morse code,” replied Michael.

“North?” said the scruffy boy who was one of the first two to see Michael that morning.

“Yes! North! That’s excellent! Good work, and why North? Well…” Michael began, describing where the epics had come from, and how members of his own family had migrated to the United States from Sweden in search of a better life, bringing over with them the tales of the mother land. These were tales which included characters possessing great powers over natural forces. As he mentioned this, he almost choked on the coffee that he was by this time sipping. Powers over natural forces… the pagan gods, pagan ethics… the Nordic countries had not been the only ones to believe in these.

Michael went on giving the background descriptions of the stories until his coffee cup was completely empty, and Ray was almost hitting the roof with anticipation. Just as Ray was reaching down towards Michael, Michael concluded “And that was the background of the stories, next week I’ll come back and we’ll commence the Thor series!” By this time Michael was basically flying through the air, handing his empty cup to the gaping Veronica, and moving out of the door before he knew what was happening.

“We’re moving so fast, what the hell?” Michael was astonished by Ray’s strength and speed, particularly considering his size and age.

“We have to move away from here this instant! We were there too long, Veronica’s thoughts are sending out a trail for Helen to grab onto.”

“What the?” Michael couldn’t get his legs together let alone his thoughts. He also realised that he had left his phone back at the activity place. He’d taken it out of his pocket as he was sitting on the cushion. “My phone!”

“Too late!” Ray shouted, “We’re moving.”

“Why don’t we take a cab?” Michael yelled back.

“Not enough time!” Still running at a speed Michael couldn’t comprehend, Ray added “Hold on to me and just relax your legs and thoughts. You move faster that way!”

Michael did as he was told, and to his surprise he found himself in automatic running mode, which could have passed for flying at the speed they were going. Not a thing, person or landmark could be seen as they covered, what must have been kilometres. At one moment Ray’s head and body seemed to hit turbulence as they seemed to suck back towards the direction from which they had come. Ray managed to escape this suction by running faster. After several more minutes of this, Ray and Michael came to a holt in front of another cellar café. Michael had no idea where they were.

“So this is today’s spot!” Ray introduced. “Do you have the notes from yesterday, and the pen and paper?”

Michael had forgotten completely about what he was doing with Ray in the first place. He then started panicking when he couldn’t find the notes on him. “It’s alright,” exclaimed Ray “I have them here,” he patted the inside of his sports coat. “Let’s go in.” As Michael followed Ray inside he suddenly started feeling guilty that he hadn’t remembered to give the waitress back her note pad and pen. Then he realised that she must have gone home before closing time and wouldn’t have been there anyway.

Once inside, Ray found another corner booth at which they both sat down. As Michael grabbed the breakfast menu, Ray reached into his inner jacket pocket, in search of the pen and paper. In only a moment he was placing the writing equipment in front of Michael, under the menu that he was reading. A waiter approached.

“Just an espresso for me” Ray ordered, “and a glass of water.”

“Umm, I’ll have…” Michael was still trying to decide “scrambled eggs on toast, orange juice, sliced grape fruit and a café latte.”

As the waiter left, with amusement Ray needed to comment “You’re hungry.”

“Well, we didn’t eat yesterday. And I just wonder how the hell you could have run like that and still just ordered an espresso? That’s just not natural.” Michael shook his head.

“It’s not. It’s supernatural, or hyper-natural, depending on how you see it.” Ray suddenly burst out laughing.

Michael wasn’t amused “What the hell do you mean?” Michael half whispered, half shouted.

“I mean,” Ray commenced “that what you felt was part of the Enertha force.”

“But you’re running away from the Enertha force aren’t you?” Michael sat staring at an unspeaking Ray, “Well, aren’t you?”

“I’m running from Helen and her shadows, yes. But, it’s not the force itself that I need to be afraid of. In fact, the force may be very kind to me indeed.”

“What are you trying to say?” Michael queried.

“I’m not trying to say anything. In fact, I have part of the Enertha force… enough of that… Let’s continue with the story!” pushed Ray. Michael sat back in a huff. “Well, now I had found Helen, but I had no idea as to whether she had anything to do with Helena. It was just pot luck that I was attempting when I handed her the pile of books with the diary included. As I was saying yesterday, she was gradually returning the books to me one by one. She said absolutely nothing astounding to me. Perhaps sometimes she tried to guess the contents by commenting on what had been written in the blurb in pretence that she had read the books. She even handed the diary back at the same time as another on 20th century British architecture.”

“And she didn’t say anything?” Michael questioned.

“Not a word. I was stumped. Everyone else had commented on how nothing had been written, but she didn’t even comment on what had been written in it. I didn’t know whether to ask her about it or wait for her to say something. I figured asking would be out of the question so I decided to wait. Fortunately I didn’t have to wait long. Helen started working more productively than normal. I mean, although she was obsessive, it was usually more being obsessive about being in the studio than actually concentrating on work. While she still took her day dreaming and coffee-drinking breaks, it seemed that more papers started accumulating around her cubical. There were many small studies and then finally she started working on a larger picture. I was curious, but only tried to see the image when she wasn’t there. Sometimes I sent Henrik into the studio to take photographs. What had caught my eye was a type of ‘map,’ if I can call it that, which she had used to structure the image. It seemed to be an exact replica of my back garden in Mable Falls.”

“So somehow she had tuned into your garden?” Michael asked in disbelief.

“Yes. And as she drew, it dawned on me that she may have been sketching some kind of illustration in regards to where the source was hidden. I wanted to see how it progressed and fermented, so I left it a while. But I started pondering over how this thirty-something year old woman, Helen, completely goofy and unique, could have been the one I was looking for… Helena. I wondered how I wouldn’t have recognised her the second I had seen her. The more I thought about her, the more I saw the similarities between their looks, their habits and manner, but I just hadn’t placed them together. They were two unique, if that’s the right word, individuals… you know…”

“I know” Michael butted in.

“Of course,” Ray gave a slight knowing smile, then continued telling his story. “Life continued as usual. I started wondering about whether or not Helen’s picture was a coincidence, and that maybe she had based it on another yard she had seen. I was beginning to lose patience with anticipation. I wanted to get Helen or Helena to my house so that I could become re-acquainted with her. I began to really yearn for her, even though life went on as normal in the studio. I couldn’t make another Yvonne mistake again. Helen continued to return the books I had lent her, one-by-one. I was amused by the contents she invented when she handed me the books. Some of the comments she’d made were as if she had woven stories from the pictures and nothing else. Furthermore, I began to get Henrik to once again enter the studio at night when noone was working there. I left one of the windows in the far corner away from Helen’s cubicle open.”

“What made you kidnap Helen, then?” Michael had changed back to his original notion of scorn when thinking of the way they had taken Helen.

“Originally I had absolutely no intention of ever doing such a thing to her. It was weird, I wanted to be near her so badly, but at the same time I was terrified… what would you say to a dead love? ‘Hi, let’s start off where we left off, no hard feelings hey?’ I don’t think so. What had actually changed my mind was the diary. Out of curiosity I wanted to see whether the pages I could read were still there, or whether maybe at this stage all of the pages had appeared, thus the reason why Helen had not thought it strange… As I picked up the diary once more, and sat down in my library in my regular house, a bungalow closer to the university…”

“I know” stated Michael, in a less impressed manner.

“Oh, of course you do… Well, I was there. I had placed my glasses on to ensure that I could see any fine detail that I hadn’t seen before, and to my surprise the diary more or less opened itself. It opened itself to the page at which I had left off, even though I felt that I had read the entire book… but obviously I hadn’t. It stated that the source had found her, Helen that is, and that it was now tracking her.”

“But how did this Elizabeth know about Helen already back then?”

“She didn’t” exclaimed Ray, “the diary did. As I had explained yesterday, Elizabeth had channelled her powers into the diary, thus the diary was a form of incubator, or storage facility for the powers of a witch… Elizabeth. But they were also working as a warning signal for me. The diary told of how the source had been buried in my back garden, and that the location was undisclosed to any who weren’t Helen. Or, in other words, if anyone else dug in the back garden, whether they were looking for the box or not, if the digger did not dig directly above the box, the source would re-hide itself, knowing that the digger was an intruder.”

“So the diary writes itself continuously, is that what you’re suggesting?” Michael questioned as he thanked the waiter for his scrambled eggs.

“That’s exactly what I’m saying” Ray turned the small espresso cup on the table in front of him. “The diary seemed to be pleading to me to find the source in order for me to destroy it.”

“So how the hell would you be able to destroy this source, if it’s this kind of force thing that is an accumulation of some spirit’s lives.”

“By burning it in such an intense fire, hot enough to melt the hardest metal and bright enough to burn the shadows to the walls.”

“And the diary told you this?”

“Yes” answered Ray directly.

“So you get hold of the box, burn it with a fire that you’ve got to have the right equipment to create, and then what?”

“Helen’s life goes on as normal.”

“And what about yours? You have the force too…”

“Everybody else’s lives go on as normal.” Ray prevented Michael from finishing his sentence. “Earth doesn’t turn into hell and hell doesn’t turn into Earth.”

“Well you might be a bit late for that,” Michael chuckled.

“It’s no joke. It’s not even the undead that we’ll be dealing with, it’s the living dead. Just think of the scariest nightmare you’ve ever experienced… imagine not being able to wake up. Think of the most dreadful thought that ever crept into the back of your mind that you tried to block out… well you can’t block it out if it’s real.”

“So, all of this is in the name of power?” Michael asked, still not being able to grasp the heart of what Ray was saying.

“Well, not exactly, it is more along the terms of all of this being in the name of Helena, or Oridella, or Ophelia, or whatever her name is, or was. The idea was rather to stop her from becoming what she is, or was.”

“But how did you get some of this source, or force?”

“Let’s get on with the story.” With this Michael was once again irritated, but obediently got his pen into position and began writing on Ray’s word. “So, as I said, I didn’t particularly feel confident about being with Helen, let alone kidnapping her. What I had decided to do, was send Henrik around to her place, sorry, your place, to keep an eye on her. To make sure that she was safe, and that no boxes came flying in mid-air towards her.” Michael suddenly laughed at the absurdness of the idea, but quickly silenced. “Anyway, I guess what we were also trying to do was make Helen aware that she was being watched. I didn’t know how much she knew about the source, and how much of the diary she had actually read. But I wanted her to know that she would not be able to do anything without somebody seeing.”

“Well that’s logical.” Michael nodded with his pen in one hand, fork in the other, and a mouth full of scrambled eggs and toast. “We certainly saw that someone was watching us. And it honestly freaked the shit out of us!” Michael said as angrily as someone with a mouth full of food could speak.

“We really weren’t trying to capture her. In fact, what I wanted to do was see whether she could pin-point the source without us taking her anywhere. I hoped that she wouldn’t need to read any more of the diary, and I hoped that we could see where the source was, in her drawing before she did. Even if that sounds ridiculous,” Michael shook his head and gave a sarcastic ‘nah’ gesture. “I figured that if I saw the source in the drawing, I could dig it up and destroy it before it found Helen.”

“But, what happened? I heard something about an old 1970s car, and how the guy who had driven it had snatched Helen… this is what the neighbours across the road told the police.”

“Yes. Henrik had followed Helen home. In fact, he just narrowly escaped being seen by Helen at the studio earlier that night. So far, everything seemed as peaceful as usual, she had finished talking on the phone… apparently to you…”

“I had told her to take a taxi.”

“She would have been safer than had she been in a taxi!” Ray had to add. “As I said, everything was normal, despite the hour of the morning. Henrik always kept a distance in order not to stun Helen. He slowly turned the corner on the home stretch and just as he did so, he saw the old bomb of a car tear off from outside your gate. Henrik followed the car from a distance to ensure that he wouldn’t speed up. He was quite astounded in fact to see that the man had pulled into the drive of my bungalow, not even the summer house at which the source was buried. Henrik told me of how he had recognised the driver immediately when he pulled up beside the car. It was the man who had bought the diary from Mr Watergate, the same man who had given me the diary in the junk shop. Henrik thought of him as bad news and decided to terminate him, immediately.

“During this time Henrik was using another of my employees as his driver, mainly as a decoy for when he was going to be watching Helen. Unfortunately, Henrik had worked as a soldier earlier on in his life, and tended sometimes to get carried away with the ‘roles’ he was putting on in my service. As the three, my driver, Henrik and Helen had just stopped in the car in front of my door, I heard a bang, and peered out the front window to see that the driver had been shot. Henrik explained to me later that he was trying to prove a point, to make Helen fear him so that she wouldn’t try anything stupid.”

“This is just sick” Michael had to comment, “those were human lives and you talk about them as if they were nothing.”

“Oh they were something alright. They were the lives of all of us who are living on this planet at the moment.”

Michael just shook his head, “This is such propaganda.”

“We thankfully got Helen into the house while she remained unconscious. She had passed out as a result of a combination of the chemical that man had given her, and the shock of seeing two people killed.”

“Murdered” Michael broke in.

“Anyway, it was lucky that she was unconscious, as I could feel something happening as soon as the car had entered the yard. In fact, Henrik remarked at how difficult it was to get her in the front door. Something was pulling at her, and wanted her to remain outside.”

“The source?” Michael raised his eyebrows.

“Yes, the source. Somehow, it seemed almost too easy for the source… at least I got that feeling immediately, and wondered whether we had done the right thing after all. Perhaps I should have never bothered her and the diary, or maybe I should never have pursued Helena after all. But, now we had her. Things seemed to be normal when she was inside the house. The source didn’t seem to be able to reach her, at least, not at that stage. I put her to work on the drawing in hope that she would reveal the source soon. I didn’t tell her what the whole thing was about, I just let her know that the sooner she finished typing up the diary and ‘translating’ it into pictures, the sooner she could go home… to you.” Ray said carefully, examining Michael’s vacant eyes.

“Did anything happen while she was there with you? I mean did you do anything? Or…”

“No!” snapped Ray, “As I told you, I was terrified of her. Absolutely petrified, I had loved Helena to death… I had killed her in my jealous rage. What the hell was I going to do with Helen?”

 “You didn’t touch her? I mean, hadn’t you finally found Helena?” Michael asked in disbelief.

“Helena, yes… and more, and gosh I wanted to.” With that they both sat in silence.

“So, what happened? Obviously the source got to Helen, or Helen got to the source.”

Ray began, “The source seemed to have strengthened with every moment Helen was in the house. The reason why Helen couldn’t return home or leave the house was because that small box buried in my back garden was acting like a vacuum. With any open window at all Helen could be sucked out of the house towards it.”

Michael sat listening, still in disbelief. Then he needed to question “But, you have some of this source, how did that happen?”

“I don’t know.”

“Why didn’t you stay and fight Helen and those shadows when we were still at the house if you had some of it?”

“I didn’t know I had any at that stage. I was still me, I mean, my strength was still my own…” Ray was now a little confused.

“So, are you getting stronger?”

“Yes, it seems so.” Ray said with a smile as he sat back in his seat.

“And Helen’s after you? You could sense that she was after you at the activities place we were at. How the hell did you do that? How did you know that she had tracked Veronica’s thoughts? Why isn’t she tracking us now?”

“I just knew, I could feel her getting closer when we were there. She could track us because Veronica’s thoughts and anyone who knows me or us, gives out images through their thoughts. Their minds send out waves of our names and memories, everything someone thinks of when they see a familiar person. This makes it easier for Helen to track us. Naturally, Helen can also search other people’s thoughts, it just takes longer. She needs to try to find someone who is particularly interested in us, who actually is listening into our conversation or staring at us… forming their own images.”

“Why can’t she just tune into you, or us?” Michael wanted to know.

“Because she can’t” Ray grinned.

“Why can’t she?” Michael asked carefully.

“I don’t know…” Ray continued to smile, “I guess it’s something to do with this force.” By now Michael could sense that Ray was pretending to play innocent.

“What about that man… Henrik… why did he come back to our house? Why did he seem to be searching for me?”

With this Ray stopped grinning, “He came back?”

“Yes, I saw him in our house. I had caught him searching for… well, me… and I heard him speaking on the phone. I assumed he was talking to you.”

“No.” Ray was both a little taken aback and slightly curious.

“Oh, well… what about that old guy? Why would he have been pursuing Helen and why the hell would he have given you the diary if he wanted to track her himself?” Michael started feeling that this was an uphill battle.

Stunned at the naïve ignorance Michael displayed, “Didn’t you see him at all?”

“What do you mean?” Michael asked.

“One of those shadow things. The main one, the one who seemed to be in control of Helen.”

“That was the guy? Didn’t Henrik shoot him?” Michael shook his head.

“Shot, but not killed.”

“Who is he?” Michael wondered.

“I don’t know” by this time Ray had sunk back into his own world.

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