February 8th, 2012 | Published in Haventon Chronicles
Chapter Eight Part Two
A/N: Sorry this is up a day late. I got home from work yesterday evening to find my phoneline and broadband weren’t working. I called my provider immediately, but it wasn’t fixed until some time this morning. That’s the one thing I really can’t prevent. :/
David wasn’t sure how he had ended up in Anna’s mind but he had and he knew he had to help her. In the mindscape her could see her trapped in a whirlwind made of another’s thoughts. He struggled across and tried to pull her free but he had no idea how to help her and instead it seemed he succeeded only in triggering another trap. An amorphous mass of darkness rose up around him and seemed intent on engulfing him. He tried to ward it off but knew that he had managed nothing more than the mental equivalent of a futile raising of the hands.
When he recovered from the black out a few moments later he was lying facedown on the grass and he had a cracking headache. Anna was on her hands and knees not far away looking surprisingly amused by something.
“Well that does explain a few things.” She was actually laughing.
“What the hell just happened?” He rubbed at his temples and then rooted through his pockets and bag looking for his painkillers and then cursed fluently when he realised that for once he had forgotten to pack them.
“You don’t know?” Anna’s eyebrows shot up and she burst out laughing again. “Oh, David, you must have thought that you were going mad. You’re psychic, an empath I’d say from what just happened, possibly even a telepath. It’s in the notes that the mental exercises we do sometimes trigger psychic abilities.”
“Psychic?” David’s mind raced. “It would explain a lot of what had been going on in his head recently, unfortunately it would also mean that his instincts were probably a lot more reliable than he wanted to admit. Especially about the feeling that something evil had been aiming him at certain targets. Unfortunately it was the only explanation for what had just happened that made any sense. “Oh.”
“From where I am standing it looks like she is right, Dave.” They both turned in surprise at the sound of Tanya’s voice.
“How long have you been there?” Anna asked.
Tanya smiled at her. “Long enough to hear the entire conversation. I was in the bushes.” Tanya pointed to the patch of shrubs behind her. Anna looked skeptically at the apparently undisturbed bushes and Tanya’s immaculate suit. David had to admit he was equally suspicious but he couldn’t see anywhere else she might have been hiding.
“I didn’t hear you,” was all she said however.
“I move quietly and you two were both rather preoccupied at the time.” She walked over to Anna and offered her a hand up. “Did he manage to help you?”
“He must have done,” Anna replied. “It’s much less intense than it was and I can talk about it without any trouble. But I can still feel him in there, and he is very angry.” She paused and bit her lip. “I- I think that he may make the two of you special targets because of this. I am sorry.” She held out her hands in apology and the ruined remains of the rowan twig fell to the ground at her feet.
Tanya just shrugged. “Never mind. Vampire hunting is never exactly safe and life is bland without risk, but if he is still in your mind then I am afraid that you’re on an hunting moratorium until further notice. It’s just too dangerous.”
“I guess that’s wise,” Anna conceded reluctantly. David could sense that she knew Tanya was right but she was afraid of the consequences to her mental health of losing what had become her safety valve. Tanya apparently realised that as well, probably because of the uncomfortable look on Anna’s face. She reached out and put a hand on Anna’s shoulder.
“Do you know what I think. I think that you should take up a martial art or something similar. It’ll help you channel some of that unwanted aggression. I know this really good dojo, if you want.” David blinked at that. His father had used almost exactly the same wording when he started sending Sarah to classes when she was acting up just before Martin disappeared. His instincts yelled that this wasn’t a coincidence.
“I might try that,” Anna said thoughtfully. She looked over at David who was rubbing at his temples and wondering if he would be able to go back to work. “Hey, are you okay?”
“I’ll live, but my head is killing me. Have either of you got any painkillers?” Neither had. “Shit! I’ve got to be back at work in half an hour.”
“Hmm… let me try something.” Tanya walked over and began to massage his neck and shoulders gently. The headache began to fade almost immediately. Anna’s eyes became thoughtful as she watched them.
“Why do I get the feeling that you two know each other outside of official business?” she asked.
“We’re cousins,” Tanya said. “The Council bent the rules because it was obvious that he wouldn’t have believed anyone else.”
Anna stared at her and then snorted. “Isn’t them bending the rules one of the signs of the apocalypse or something?” she asked. “I mean those guys are so stuffy sometimes – present company excepted.” She paused and scowled. “Not to mention homicidal.”
“You know that eavesdropping is a very bad habit, Anna.” Tanya was obviously trying to sound stern and failing abysmally.
“Well pardon me for being curious when my fate was being discussed,” Anna said in a slightly snippy tone.
“What’s this?” David asked, totally lost by this twist in the conversation.
“I had to talk the Council out of terminating Anna over her mistake,” Tanya said. David stared at her in horror.
“What?! But… that’s awful… and ridiculous.”
“I know, that was my reaction. It was overkill. But we never told Anna that bit so the only way she could have known about it was if she had been listening to me talking to that insane werewolf hunter.”
“Rhiane, yes,” Anna agreed. “She seemed almost unbalanced and I think that she needs anger management classes even more than I do.”
“You don’t need anger management classes,” Tanya said dryly. “You just need a channel for all that tension. And as for Rhiane she need a hell of a lot more than that. She really could do with full blown psychiatric help. She saw her hunting partner eaten alive in front of her and she is been – um – traumatised ever since.” She patted Anna’s shoulder again. “Something else for me to try and get the council to look into – what we do isn’t easy on the mind.”
“That would traumatise anybody.” David shuddered at the thought and then checked his watch. “I’d better get back to work.”
“Yeah,” Tanya agreed. “I’ll take Anna home. I want to ask her some more questions about this vampire. Oh, and both of you come around to my place tomorrow morning. I have something for you both.” She looked at Anna. “I’ll give you my address later.” And then at David. “You don’t work until tomorrow afternoon right?”
“Yeah,” David said. “Tomorrow is my evening shift at the garage.”
“Er…” Anna said. “Is it wise to let me know where you live? He might use it to track you down.”
“Don’t worry about it. He had be able to find me anyway if he really wanted to, I think. We’re not as secure as we like to think. Come on.” As she led Anna from the park she looked back at David. “You okay with that as well, Dave?”
“Oh sure.” He rubbed at his neck and wondered how she had managed to get rid of his headache so completely.
A/N: (Yes another one) If you are a regular Haventon reader and would like to see it in ebook or even dead tree form please visit this post on my dreamwidth blog about a potential IndieGoGo campaign to raise the money. Thanks!