[Make sure you read Solitaire before you read this.]

I arrived late at night. I considered waiting till the next day to visit Thomas Reel, but I went to his house anyways. It was by itself on a dirt road, around ten kilometers from the city. I rang the doorbell. The door slowly opened just enough so he could see me. He asked me what I wanted. I told him I was sent by Derrick Todd. He told that now was not a good time. I told him there would be no other time. He agreed with me and let me in. The first thing I noticed in his living room was the loaded assault rifle sitting on the table. He picked it up and put the strap around his shoulder. He told me that I was either the luckiest person alive, or the unluckiest. He told me to make my questions quick. So I did.

I asked him what I saved Betham from, what was worse than Holders. "Shit," he said to me. "You really are the unluckiest." He kept looking out the windows, checking other rooms, I followed him around, asking who he was expecting. He told me that you couldn't expect these things, that they would either come or not, in that way they are worse than Holders. I asked him what they were. He must have seen something in my eye because he cursed under his breath and sat down. "I'll give you the quick version" he told me. "Have you ever heard of the B-" he was cut off by a loud screeching noise. Like fingernails on a chalkboard but worse, and much louder. It was loud enough that I had to cover my ears, enough that my eyes began to water. He didn't seem to be as afraid as me, but he took the safety off his gun. The lights flickered once or twice. I don't know how I heard it with all the screeching but I heard a drop. It landed on the center of the table. Thomas didn't notice it, but I got a closer look. It was some kind of black liquid. Thick and sticky. Almost immediately another drop dripped onto the same place, and another and another. At this point Thomas noticed and pulled me away, just as I began to look up.

Large cracks of this black liquid had formed in the ceiling, as a puddle of the liquid seeped out. More and more of it dripped out, until the table itself was completely covered. Then an arm reached out of the liquid on the table. If I could have screamed, I probably would have. It gripped the edge of the table and began to pull itself out. First the arm, then the torso, the head and then another arm. The weight of the creature then toppled the table over, but that didn't stop it. It began to crawl out of the table until it was fully out. It then stood up. It was completely covered with the black liquid, but had the structure of a human. Where its face should have been, there were no features, but it moved as if it was looking at its surroundings. Its gaze rested on Thomas who appeared to be in shock. Without any warning the creature jumped at him, but Thomas shot before the thing got to him. It took several shots to its chest which stopped it, and after ten or more shots it was on the ground. Thomas emptied the rest of the magazine into it, but it kept moving. He then lowered his gun, walked up to its head and kicked it in the neck. The monster twitched, but remained motionless. There was only silence now.

It didn't last long. Thomas told me to get down to the basement, and a few seconds later he followed me down. “At least with Holders, we go to them.” He said mostly to himself, locking the upstairs door. We took a few minutes to regain our breaths. He then asked me if I still wanted to know. I laughed, just to break the tension. I told him to go on. He asked me if I had ever heard of the “Bank Theory”. I told him I had. The Bank Theory was one that had been posted on the Seekers discussion web page. It likened our lives to a bank. That the Objects were the items in the deposit boxes, the Holders were the guards, and us Seekers were the robbers. This however pointed out the question, who did the objects then belong too? This started a lot of controversy. Thomas told me that's how he saw it. That those things were the original owners and that they wanted their Objects back. He told me that he had heard that they would only target Seekers with Objects. He chuckled and said that “for all we know, they could be aliens from Mars” but then went quiet. I asked how he knew it was coming for him tonight. He told me he didn't know when, but he knew they were coming. I asked him how he knew. He told me that someone had warned him through an email he received. But I stopped paying attention then.

I should have warned him, I should have said something, done something. But I couldn't. All I could do was watch the small dribble of ink coloured liquid go down the wall he was leaning on. There was no noise this time, or if there was, I didn't hear it. He stopped talking and looked at me. He was about to say something when it happened. He gasped for a second, and then went still. And then a hand, covered in the black oil, burst through his chest. He looked at me and whimpered. I felt my body again and I ran up the stairs and into the living room. Then from the other side another one walked in as well. From the other side of the room it looked at me. I could only look back. It was then I noticed it, in the glass container on top of the coffee table, there were a pair of cuff links. The thing on the other side of the room walked towards it, and so did I. We began to circle the table between us, making no sudden movements. But I didn't try to grab the Object. I simply backed off to the exit of the house. It watched me the whole time.

I left for home the next day. I had no more leads. I didn't know where to go, or even if those things would follow me. I thought it might be better to get rid of my Objects. But I couldn't do that. I began to wish that I had paid more attention to Thomas Reed. If I listened to who tipped him off about the creatures, maybe I would know where to go. Or if only I had warned him. But I hadn't. Once I got home I found a package in the mail. I checked the name and it read Derrick Todd. It was the deck of cards I had left with him. I turned over the top card. It was the King of Clubs. On it, written in black marker was the letter “D”. The next card had an “N”. I flipped over the deck and spread out the cards: t, h, e, y, a, c, t, u, a, l, l, y, a, r, e, t, r, y, i, n, g, t, o, k, e, e, p, u, s, b, e, t, t, e, r, b, u, t, i, t, s, t, o, o, l, a, t, e, E, n, d.

When I sorted it all out it read:
“they actually are trying to keep us better but its too late End”

At first I was confused why Derrick would have sent me a message like that instead of telling me. Or why he would write it on the cards my Father left him. And why only the E was capitalized. But then I realized that it wasn't a message from him. It had been from my Father.

After all, he signed it.


[ Story continues with Finding The End ]
[ Chapter Index ]
Last modified on 2011-01-30 04:45:21Viewed 8467 times

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