Karen’s memories were returning slowly but it was going to take a while – possibly all of the remaining school holiday – to reclaim them all. Her mother could only work on the memory cap when the other’s weren’t there, and worse, she would collapse after only a little work on it and have to spend the next day in bed.
But at least Karen now remembered being in the other world and she had a fair idea who was dead from the way her stomach knotted up whenever she thought of Kyle or Sean. She just wished she could help crack the cap so her mother didn’t have to put herself through this.
“Earth to Karen!” Lydia said loudly in her ear.
“Hmm?” Karen looked up at her sister. “Were you saying something?”
“No,” Lydia sounded exasperated. “But Dan was.”
“I asked if you were coming to warch the tournament tomorrow,” he said when Karen looked at him questioningly.
“I don’t think so,” she said. He gave her a crestfallen look and she sighed. “You know how mum’s been, one of us should be here.”
“Kaz is right,” he father said from the door. “And you know it. Anyway there’s something I need her to do tomorrow during your tournament.” He looked relaxed on the surface but Karen could tell he was really tense. Something must have happened.
“That means you and mum aren’t coming either?” Daniel asked.
“I’m sorry, we’ll come next time, I promise. And I’ll drive you, Lyd and Drew there of course.” He looked over at Karen before Daniel could say anything else. “Can I borrow you, Kaz?”
“Of course, dad.” She rose to her feet and followed him to the study. “What is it?” she asked softly when he’d closed the door.
“Sarah called me. They broke through Jason’s memory cap and she told me what they found. It’s pretty bad – I’m going to have to warn Sonia what to expect – she doesn’t need that sort of shock.” His expression grew grim. “And I think we’ll need to blow the entire cap tomorrow, not do it gradually like we have been. We can’t keep this up with her collapsing every time and I’m sure she can shield you from the worst.”
“But what about her?” Karen asked. “Won’t it make her condition worse? That’s why we’ve being so slow, right?”
“Actually, that was to protect you. It would probably be easier on Sonia to just rip the block out, but that would hurt you and possibly even do damage. I’ll talk to her about it when I tell her what Lucas found in Jason’s head.”
“What did he find?” Karen asked and her father tutted at her.
“You know better than that, Kaz. If you know what we’ll find will make it harder to break the block because your imagination will interfere.” He rubbed the bridge of his nose. “I need to talk to Sonia about this. See if she thinks it’s safe to blast through the block. Can you make sure the others don’t interrupt us?”