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   Author  Topic: Unusual  (Read 631 times)
Deenan (O.L.C.)
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Unusual
« on: January 28, 2014, 07:55:44 am »
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It had all begun on January 25. Elijah Wood had stepped off the plane in Boston Massachusetts feeling somewhat tired from the long flight, but excited about the prospect of  meeting the author of  screenplay that had come across his desk only last week. Being a producer of a horror movie company had its fun moments; however, it was also filled with stress factors and this last month had been rife with stress. There had been a whole string of issues that included filming delays, sick performers, contract negotiations gone wrong, and even locations that  which had been arranged months before, becoming unusable due to bad weather conditions; Elijah was over due for some good news. So it was that morning when he opened the envelope on his desk, he was delightfully surprised by what he found inside.

The concept was eerie, the proposed script well written, and most importantly of all, Elijah could see the scenes happening within his mind. Being that the hour was early and none of the office staff had yet to make an appearance, Elijah picked up the phone and dialed the number of the author of the script himself. Although it was only five in the morning in California, in New England it was already eight. The phone had wrung three times and Elijah was thinking he was probably going to need to leave a voice mail when suddenly the line clicked and a very sleepy female voice answered the phone. Elijah politely inquired if Roger Addison was at home and a few moments later, the sound of a young male voice came on the line. The conversation had quickly taken off and before a half an hour had passed, Elijah found himself saying he would be booking a flight to New England that very morning. The timing was perfect for the trip. He would come back with a signed contract hopefully, and in addition, it would be getting him out of town for a few days. The break would benefit him greatly.

Therefore, it was that after grabbing the emergency suitcase that was always packed and waiting in his closet at the office, he hastily wrote an email to his two business partners and left instructions with his administrative assistant. He ran out of the office and then drove at a frightening speed all the way to the airport. He made the flight in time to spare since there had been an unforeseen delay, involving having to change a tire on the plane. He sat relaxing drinking a cup of coffee and looking out into the still dark sky. A soft smile played across his lips as he recalled his mother saying to him “So you want to open a company where you make your money from scaring people.” He had laughed a little and said, “Well, yes mom, I guess I do.” His mom had simply shaken her head, smiled, and then said, “You always have been unique in your choices in life. If that is your dream, than by all means, do it.”

The airline announced the flight was ready to begin boarding and Elijah quickly filed into line and onto the uncrowded flight. He rested his seat back as soon as passengers were allowed to do so, and with an expansive yawn fell asleep. Luckily, he did not have to change planes in Chicago and could just stay on board the flight. Therefore, it was that eight hours later the flight attendant gently stirred him from sleep and told him he needed to put his seat belt on. Groggily he put his seat into an upright position and fastened the belt as instructed. He could not believe he had slept the entire flight. It had been ages since he had slept like that. The long nights of stress had seriously cut into his sleeping patterns and to be able to deeply rest for so long was a relief.

The tires of the plane bumped the landing tarmac hard and then finally bounced once more before slowing to a stop. He looked outside to see the runway was icy and thought the pilot had actually done a wonderful job landing them as smoothly as he had. Elijah stood, retrieved his laptop from overhead storage, and quickly made his way off the flight. As he departed, he smiled and thanked the flight attendants for the pleasant flight and then made his way out into the terminal. One fifteen in the afternoon  was a busy time for Logan International Airport and he had to wait a few moments to retrieve his bag. Finally, he snatched the bag from the luggage carousel and then quickly made his way to rental car counter. Once he had the keys to the vehicle they had provided for him, he made his way out of the terminal to the parking garage. He exited the garage and then quickly activated the on board GPS system.
Finding his way through the city and out onto the highway was the trickiest aspect of the entire trip until he actually came to the exit of Route 95 North. Once he took the exit and then began traveling through the small city of Newburyport, Massachusetts the trip became a little more intense. There was a hard rain falling and the packed snow that had already been on the city street, made the driving very slippery. Elijah said a short prayer of thanks that he was driving a SUV rather than a sports car. He navigated his way through the city observing the wonderful architecture and the charm of the city sidewalks done in brick. He found his way to Center Street and to the parking lot of The Compass Rose Inn. Roger suggested the Inn and when Elijah went inside, he was delighted he had taken the suggestion. Once he had his bag inside his room, he took a seat on the sofa and called Roger, informing him that he had arrived.


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Re:Unusual
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2014, 07:56:53 am »
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“Oh I am glad to hear you made it alright. I didn’t realize when you said you were going to come right away that we had this weather moving into the area.” Roger said with apology.
“That’s perfectly alright; I’m not made of sugar so I doubt the rain will make me melt.” Elijah joked heartily.
“You said you would like to take me out to dinner to discuss the script in greater detail, so I took the liberty of making a reservation for seven thirty this evening. You will not have to go far; the restaurant is located directly across the street from the inn.” Roger informed him.
“I hope you included the young lady who answered the phone this morning when you made the reservation.” Elijah said quickly. “I would hate to take you away for evening from your lady love.”
Roger laughed heartily and said, “That was my sister-in-law Karla. I live with her and my brother Edmund.”
“Well invite them to dinner as well. I think it would be nice to let your entire family know what I envision for you and your involvement in my company.” Elijah said pleasantly.
“I will do that, I will change the reservation and we will see you at seven thirty.” Roger said cheerily
“I’m looking forward to it.” Elijah said and then clicked off the phone.

That evening had gone well. He had walked away with a signed contract in hand and the following morning he was going to begin looking around the town for locations to shoot the story. Roger estimated that he could have the screenplay completely revised and ready for production within four weeks. That meant that Elijah had to seek permission from the city to shoot in the locations  he wanted to use,  bring the director on board he wanted for the project, arrange for a casting call, and on and on the list continued, seeming nearly endless. However, being wired the way he was, Elijah was undaunted by the long list of things to be done. In truth, he was more excited in regards to this project than he had been about anything in months.

He went to sleep that night and somewhere within his dreams was the howling of winter wind, a dark nearly moonless sky filled with snow, the ocean roaring back and forth, as it is surged to a frenzy caused by the northeast storm. Over all of it was the sound of a female voice, low, sweet and heart wrenchingly sad.

Elijah came awake the next day to the shrill ringing of the telephone. He answered sleepily and it was Roger on the other end of the telephone. “Did you get lost trying to find your way to Plum Island?” Roger asked curiously.
“No, that is not what happened.” Elijah groaned deeply. “In truth I forgot to set my alarm. What time is it anyway?”
“It’s exactly nine twenty five in the morning. “ Roger said with a chuckle.
Elijah swore softly and said “Uggg, god I’m sorry. I’ll be there as soon as I can get my ass off the mattress and into the shower.”
“That’s alright take your time. Karla was just concerned you had become turned around somewhere. Oh, she wanted me to ask you if you prefer lemon poppy seed or blueberry.”

“What?” Elijah asked genuinely confused by the question. He heard Karla’s voice say “Oh for the love of Zeus give me that phone!”
A moment later Karla calmly explained, “What Roger failed to properly voice was, do you prefer lemon poppy seed or blueberry muffins?” She inquired with a cheery laugh.
“Oh!” Elijah said and laughed deeply “Now the question makes sense. Truthfully I like both, why are you asking?”
“I am preparing a late breakfast for everyone that is of course, if you like bacon and eggs?” She said sounding a bit unsure.
Elijah’s stomach growled and he said, “I’ll be there in less than a half hour.”
Karla laughed and said, “Good, and by the way, dress warmly; the wind off the ocean here is savage today.”
“Thank You, I will definitely make sure to bundle up.” Elijah said and then he hung up the phone. With the call now disconnected, he flew into bathroom and scrambled around madly getting ready.
Elijah grabbed his keys, hat, gloves, and his coat. He was in mid -stride out the door when he stopped abruptly, and turning around he went back to grab his camera bag. “Smart move Elijah, it would have completely defeated the purpose of the day if you were not able to take photographs of perspective locations.” He muttered to himself, and shook his head.

Twenty-five minutes later and slightly more awake, Elijah pulled out to the very point on the Newbury side of Plum Island before it became Parker River Wildlife Refuge. The large modern three-story beach house was impressive against the slate gray winter sky. Elijah whistled softly as he beheld the building of glass and concrete accented with steel. Being a person of notoriety in the entertainment industry he was no stranger to impressive houses, but finding one of this caliber here in this little New England seaside town was a surprise. He shifted the laptop bag on his shoulder and made his way up the wooden planked walkway that led to the stairway that led up over the sandy dunes to the house.
Elijah had reached the front door and was reaching for the doorbell, when the heavy door was suddenly yanked open. A man who stood about five foot nine with slightly gray hair and spectacles, dashed through the door.
“Whoa “Elijah said as he stepped aside and the man raced past him with a  quick “Sorry Elijah” he then waved and dashed down the steps and jumped into the tan jeep parked next to Elijah’s rented SUV
Elijah waved back and watched as the man drove off rapidly. Turning back to the now open door, he stepped inside and called “Hello?” From the back, he heard movement and then Karla appeared. Her brunette hair was done up in a bun that was held by a pencil, she was casually dressed in grey sweatpants and a blue sweater. In her arms, she carried a small blanket wrapped bundle. Elijah grinned and said, “That must be Chelsea.”
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2014, 07:57:20 am »
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Karla smiled tiredly and said, “It is indeed.” At that moment, the baby began to fuss, and Karla lifted the infant to her shoulder and began bouncing her slightly. “We had a very rough night. She wailed till almost five this morning.”
“Are you sure my being here this morning is convenient? I mean I can go take shots of the town and come back here tomorrow if you just want to have a relaxing day.” Elijah said quickly not wanting to inconvenience Roger’s family.
“Oh don’t be silly, this is all par for the course when you have a four month old baby.” Karla said with a laugh.
Turning quickly, she began walking back the way she had come from. Elijah fell in step behind her and came to the back of the house where there was the biggest kitchen he had ever seen in a private residence.
“Holy Cow!” Elijah exclaimed with a chuckle.
“I know it’s large, but Edmund likes space when he cooks.” Karla explained with a grin.
“I imagine you like it is as well.” Elijah said with a grin.
“You have obviously figured her out fast.” Roger said as he came in off the back porch rubbing his hands together and shivering.
Elijah grinned and said, “Damn, you look like you are uncomfortable.”
“Colder than hell out there today.” Roger said with a chuckle as he snagged the coffee pot and pulled out two cups from the overhead cupboard. “Can I offer you a cup?” He asked Elijah.
“Oh god, yes please.” Elijah said as he yawned and then slid the laptop bag off his shoulder and sunk down at the table, which had been set with four plates and utensils. “Is Edmund coming back to have breakfast with us?” He asked Karla, who now sat down across from him.
“I doubt it, Mrs. Anderson ever so inconveniently decided that going into labor this morning would be the neat thing to do.” Karla said with a chuckle.
“I recall Edmund saying he was a physician last night.” Elijah said as he took the cup of coffee that Roger brought to the table.
“Last night was truly amazing in the fact that he was on call and yet nobody telephoned so we actually managed to enjoy an evening out.” Karla laughed.
“Trust me when I tell you that does not happen very often for them.” Roger said with a grin. At that moment Rogers cell phone chimed and he looked down and then said “Excuse me a moment.”

Elijah and Karla watched as Roger dashed away from the table. Karla chuckled and shook her head “That has to be Meredith.” She said quietly.
“I take it that is his girlfriend.” Elijah said as he hugged his hands around his coffee cup.
Karla was silent for a moment and then she said, “Meredith is a friend Roger has had since high school. He adores her, but he lacks the courage to speak up and tell her how he feels.”
Elijah now felt a bit uncomfortable so he just looked at the tabletop. Karla cleared her throat and said, “I’m sorry I didn’t mean to make you feel uneasy.”
Elijah chuckled and said “Not your fault Karla. If I had not asked a nosey question, than I would not have received an unexpected answer, curiosity will be the death of me one of these days.” He said as he raised the coffee mug to his lips and took a healthy swallow. Karla smiled as she stood up and made her way to the stove.
As she begun preparing the meal she turned and said to Elijah “We have about twenty minutes if you want to see the beach. This section belongs to us and if you go just a quarter of a mile down you will find the remains of Harrington House.”
“I take it that’s the house mentioned in Roger’s story.” Elijah said as he put his unfinished coffee down and stood to put his coat on.
“Indeed it is. I think you will be impressed. To this day the house is as imposing as ever.” Karla said slowly as she looked at Elijah.
Elijah was bewildered by her look and stated, “I somehow feel that is part of the story, isn’t it?”
“It is indeed. I think if you wait a moment Roger would be glad to go with you and explain everything.” Karla said with a wink and a grin.
Elijah had just finished zipping his coat and shouldering his camera bag when Roger returned. “Sorry about that, Meredith wanted to know if I was still going to come by and show you the artifacts from Captain Harrington’s belongings today. Meredith works for the historical society so she wanted to clear the hall so you could look at the items without being disturbed.”
“That is very nice of her to do that for us, I think we could probably squeeze it in at some point today.” Elijah said agreeably as he yanked his hat down over his ears.
“I told her we would probably shoot to get there around two o’clock.” Roger said as he began shoving his feet into his sneakers. He hurriedly tossed his coat back on and waved for Elijah to follow him.
The two men went out the back glass slider and descended a large spiral staircase down to ground level. Elijah unpacked the camera and immediately began taking photographs. The beach was virtually empty except for driftwood and seagulls. The Ocean was a deep gray green that looked cold and forbidding. Elijah grinned and said, “It looks spooky enough all on its own out here today.”
“Yes, the weather being so overcast does indeed make it look eerie.” Roger agreed with a laugh. “Follow me, the house isn’t that far, but it is cold as a bitch out here so we should hurry.”
They took off down the beach and five minutes later, they came to a wooden fence marked with a sign indicating it was private property. Elijah whistled at the sight of the huge Victorian style home sitting back from the shore. The paint was still in good shape, the shutters were intact, and the windows clean. The color of the house was a slight gray blue that was soft, yet imposing at the same time. “Will we be allowed to see the inside at some point?” Elijah asked hopefully. The thought of shooting inside what was supposed to be a genuinely haunted house had his senses tingling with glee.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2014, 07:57:36 am »
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“I know the caretaker so that will not be an issue.” Roger said with a knowing smile.
Elijah began clicking pictures like crazy and before too long his hands were red from the cold. Slowly he lowered the camera and rubbed his hands together. “Winter here is pretty serious stuff.” He said with a laugh.
“Indeed it is.” Roger agreed as he huddled in on himself. “Let’s go back to the house. Karla probably has breakfast ready and she will kill me if you get frostbite out here.”
Elijah slipped the camera back into its carrier bag and then hurriedly made his way back down the beach with Roger. The two of them came through the back sliding door with a huge gust of wind behind them that sent papers sitting on nearby desk flying. Karla dived for the floating sheets of information and easily gathered them back together, placing a large seashell on top to hold them down.
“Sorry about that. “ Elijah apologized as he rubbed furiously at his hands to try to bring back feeling into them.
Karla laughed and said “Elijah don’t apologize, It isn’t you fault mother nature is feeling feisty today.”
Elijah just grinned and quickly shrugged out of his coat and hat. Karla handed him his coffee mug, which she had refilled with fresh hot brew that he needed. “Thank you, it is so damn cold out there.” He said shivering a bit.
Taking mercy on the fact that Elijah hailed from a warmer climate, Karla hit the switch on the gas fireplace and the flames sprung up cheerily. Elijah grinned and sunk down in a comfortable bent wood rocker before the cozy glow of the fire.
“So did Roger tell you the story behind Harrington House?” Karla asked looking like she knew a marvelous secret.
“I was given the short version when the script arrived, but truthfully I was so taken in with the house itself; I completely forgot to ask more details.” Elijah said with a boyish grin.
Karla chuckled and said to Roger “Who should tell it you or me?”
Roger made a sweeping motion and said, “You do it, you are the caretaker of the property after all.”
Karla sighed and leaned forward, resting her elbows on her knees. “The story that has been handed down goes like this. Joshua Harrington was a well off Merchant within the town who chose to live rather reclusively. People’s regard of him was that he was somewhat quiet, reserved and rarely smiled. Although he was an attractive man, and well off financially, he never seemed inclined to want to socialize or seek out a wife. In the spring of 1804, Joshua sailed on the ship The Anna Marie. The ship was supposed to be away for months but oddly enough, returned in only  four days .The crew when they departed the ship were said to look haunted and scared as if something had occurred at sea within those four days that no one could imagine. Everyone was worse for wear, except Joshua Harrington. He was like a new man, he was smiling, happy, and the reason was what he found on that trip, Joshua Harrington returned with a woman.
The day the ship arrived back at port, Joshua and his new love, went directly to a church and were married. The certificate of marriage indicated that her name was, Anna Marie.” Karla stopped for a moment and Elijah looked at her, his eyes already a bit wide.
“Anna Marie was the name of the ship.” Elijah said softly.
“Indeed it was.” Karla said her lips curling a bit as she saw Elijah beginning to wonder about the coincidence in his head.
“All seemed well; Joshua took his new bride to his home and even held a party in her honor. She was said to be soft-spoken, lovely and made Joshua smile such as people had never seen him do before. The happiness however, was not to last. Four days after the marriage, one of Joshua’s servants came into town screaming madly of how they had come from the sea to take back what was their own. People went to investigate and they found the mutilated body of Joshua Harrington. He had been literally torn apart. From the remains people said it looked like Joshua Harrington had been eaten alive. His face was locked in an expression terror, dying as he screamed. His wife was nowhere to be found. Upon a search of the house, it revealed that only the one servant had escaped, all the others were in the same shape Joshua himself had been found in.” Karla ended and silence filled the room for a moment.

“Holy …..” Elijah whispered softly.

“Karla left one thing out. It is said to this day that Joshua still roams the beach; all the people who have seen him say he asks only one question, “Where have they taken my Anna?” Roger said, looking at Elijah and gauging his reaction.

Elijah thought for a moment and said, “Do you believe that to be true?”
Roger chuckled and said, “I know it to be true. You see Elijah; I’ve seen Joshua Harrington and heard him ask the question of me.”
Elijah sat for a moment simply staring at Roger, and then he laughed and said, “This is going to make an amazing movie!”
“Indeed” Roger agreed with a huge grin.

The day passed and Elijah was able to get photographs from the viewing of the historical items held at the museum, plus a few around the town. The savage cold grew deeper as darkness descended on the town and Elijah retreated to the safety of his room at the inn. He plugged his laptop in and downloaded the photo’s to the hard drive. He was pleased with what he had found and was looking forward to getting even more information. Tomorrow would be a full day as once more he intended to return to Plum Island.

Around eight o’clock, he decided to brave the cold and walked a block up around the corner to find the restaurant Roger had suggested to him for the evening. He ordered a burger and a beer and sat just taking in the atmosphere. There was local band playing, so he went downstairs and sequestered himself into a back corner so he would not be seen. He enjoyed the evening, but by eleven O’clock, he had drunk six beers and was feeling fuzzy around the edges so he decided he better head back to the inn. The air was cold as sin and Elijah gasped when it hit him in the face. He gulped down air and felt like a knife was going through his lungs. He went a few steps but suddenly he was dizzy as hell. He slid down the side of the building with his eyes watering and unable to get his breath.

Suddenly he felt warmth encompass his face, and he realized someone had wrapped a scarf over his face. He gulped in air, as it was now warm because of the scarf. He felt someone guide him to his feet and he allowed himself to be led along until he found himself at the door of the inn. He felt his room key pressed into his hand and he saw a female hand open the front door. Elijah picked his head up intending to thank the woman, but to his astonishment, there was nobody there. “What the…” Elijah slurred. He shook his head as things began to swim before his eyes again. Deciding he was drunker than he thought he was, he staggered up the stairs and, then into his room. He shrugged out of his coat and then promptly passed out face down on the bed.
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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2014, 07:58:00 am »
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There was the sound of singing floating on the wind from somewhere far away, but underneath was this shrill irritating buzz… Elijah came awake with a start and reached for his phone in his pocket. He fumbled and finally managed to get it clicked on.
“Yeah.” He said thickly. He opened his eyes to see daylight streaming through the window and winced at the brightness.
“Elijah? Are you okay? You sound awful.” Karla’s voice said from the other end of the connection.
“That depends upon your version of okay.” He moaned.
“Where are you? We expected you hours ago.” Karla said her voice still holding a tone of worry.
“I just woke up.” Elijah told her softly.
Karla was quiet for a moment and then she said, “Well, dinner will be ready in an hour if you want to join us, that is, if you feel up to attending.”
“I’ll be there I just need to get cleaned up first.” Elijah said as he swallowed thickly.
“Okay, I’ll let you go and see you around five.” Karla said and hung up the phone.
Elijah sat up stiffly and waited a moment until he was sure his head could handle moving. Once he was up, he fumbled through his suitcase and found the Advil he had packed and plopped four pills into his hand. He went into the bathroom, drew a glass of water from the tap, and then swallowed the pills. He flipped the shower on so that within a minute, it was billowing steam and he stripped off the clothes he was still dressed in from the night before. He got into the shower and instantly began to feel better.
Within a half hour his headache had disappeared and he was dressed in a white and blue button up dress shirt topped with a navy blue sweater. He had on fresh jeans and his hair neatly combed. He threw his coat on, stuffed his hat on down over his ears and grabbed his keys. He was about to leave the room when he noticed a scarf on the floor. It was aqua blue inter-stitched with gold. He picked it up and he noticed how soft it was. This must have been from the woman who guided him back here last night. The question was how had she known where he was staying? The question swirled through his mind like elusive mist. Not really comprehending why he was doing it, he wound the scarf around his neck, and he caught a faint scent of something tropical. As he breathed in deeply, he supposed, that the scent must have been the perfume that she was wearing the night before. Elijah sighed, wishing he had seen her, for he was well aware he owed her his thanks. The cold had been  brutal and not being able to breathe like that had been so terrifying that even now recalling it, left him rattled.

He put unpleasant thoughts out of his head and left the room. Outside, he managed to get the SUV started after it had resisted several times. He threw the car into gear and once more headed for the island. By the time he arrived, full dark had descended on the island and the wind moaned eerily down the narrow streets, blasting anyone in its wake with grains of sand. He rushed up the steps eager to get out of the cold and merciless wind. At last, Karla opened the door for him and he quickly stepped inside. “Go sit by the fire.” She instructed kindly.
Elijah did not resist the suggestion and quickly made himself comfortable in the same rocker he had sat in the previous day. The fire was warm and cheery and he thawed out quickly enough. Karla bustled around behind him setting the table and checking on dinner. Roger strolled into the room dressed in heavy jeans and an Irish knit sweater. His long light brown curls were gathered back into a ponytail and he smiled widely when he saw Elijah.
“Karla said you were just waking up when she called, please tell me you got lucky last night.” Roger joked boldly.
“Roger!” Karla said shocked by her brother’s bawdy suggestion. She shook her head as Roger chuckled deeply. “Please excuse him Elijah, Roger suffers from blurt before thinking-itus.”
Elijah grinned and said, “Actually I was very lucky last night, but not in the context that Roger meant it.”
“Oh do tell.” Roger said as he flopped in the over-stuffed chair next to Elijah.
Elijah told Karla and Roger of his experience outside the restaurant last night. Neither of them said anything for a moment and then Roger asked slowly “You have absolutely no idea who she was or what she looks like?”
“No idea who she was and no, I never even got a glimpse of her.” Elijah said firmly.
Karla, who had been standing to Elijah’s left, suddenly reached down and pulled a shining copper strand from his sweater. “Have you been near any other women since last night?” She asked softly
“No, I came straight here, but I did wear the scarf she gave me.” Elijah said as he looked at the strand of hair Karla now handed him. He gazed at it for a moment and said, “I would take a guess and say she is redhead.”
“Yes, I would say that is a fair assumption.” Karla agreed with a grin
“Well aren’t you the lucky one.” Roger joked softly.
Elijah thought for a moment and said, “I don’t know about that I mean if she had wanted me to see her, I would have thought she would have stuck around for a few moments.”
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2014, 07:58:18 am »
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Karla noticed that Elijah sounded both unsure and slightly disappointed. She patted his shoulder and said, “I wouldn’t be so sure about that Elijah, after all you were drunk and not feeling well. She probably wanted to preserve your dignity. You may yet get to meet her.”
Elijah sat for just a moment lost in thought. Karla motioned to Roger and he followed his sister into the kitchen. Elijah remained sitting by the fire still considering why the woman had not spoken to him. Finally, he sighed and thought, maybe Karla was right. He had indeed been drunk and unwell. In addition, it had been bitter cold as well. The truth was the woman probably just wanted to get out of the cold as quickly as possible. He sighed and ran his hand through his hair, he needed to stop obsessing over it and just go on about his business. However, a small irritating voice inside him needled at his very core and taunted him by saying, that may be true, but you know damn well that you cannot stop thinking about her.
Sighing once again, he stood up and went into the kitchen. Karla was pulling a huge pie out of the oven and the scent of it made Elijah’s mouth water instantly.
“Did you seriously make lobster pie for dinner?” Elijah asked sounding awed.
Karla smiled broadly and said, “Lobster pie happens to be Edmonds favorite dinner. Unfortunately, Edmund will not be able to join us because he has a patient with serious complications and was called to the hospital for an emergency assessment.”
“That’s awful.” Elijah said quietly. He could only imagine how distressing it must be to be expecting a new baby and to have complications. His heart went out to the woman and her family.
“Yes, it very sad, but hopefully Edmund will be able to resolve things and all will end happily.” Karla said gently.

Everyone took his or her seats at the dinner table, and Roger uncorked a bottle of white wine. Karla began serving and Elijah felt like he was eating in a gourmet restaurant. In addition to the lobster pie, there were steamed green beans with almonds in a balsamic glaze, softly steaming wild rice, wonderfully soft oatmeal rolls, which were obviously homemade. Karla slid a small glass dish of butter to him and said, “I hope you enjoy honey butter.”
Elijah grinned and said “You are going to make it so I don’t want to go home Karla!”
Karla laughed and said, “I just love cooking is all it helps me unwind from the stressors of my job.”
Elijah took a healthy bite of the pie, which had been cooling only a few moments on his plate. He jumped a bit, and Karla quickly grabbed his wine glass and handed it to him.
“Take it easy, you’ll scorch your tongue off being impatient like that.” She scolded in soft tone.
“Thanks mom, we’ll remember to be good little boys now.” Roger said sarcastically and rolled his eyes.
“I am sure Elijah can manage himself without a problem; you on the other hand are hopelessly lost without me.” Karla said pointedly, but with good humor.
Roger had a sour look on his face and he turned to Elijah and said, “I would appreciate a little help here.”
Elijah put his hands up in a gesture of surrender and said “Oh no, there is no way I am getting into this situation.”
Roger smirked and asked “Why Elijah, are you chicken?”
“No, I am smart. You see I have a younger sister, so I have learned when I should most definitely to keep my mouth firmly shut.” Elijah said with a chuckle.
Karla grinned and said, “Roger this means I definitely win.” and picked up her fork to continue eating.
“I saw that coming. “ Elijah commented softly.
Karla tipped her head and said, “Thought you were choosing to be smart about this?”
Elijah backpedaled and replied, “Yes, yes I am, and therefore I am officially declaring myself Switzerland. Shutting up now.” Then he made a gesture of zipping his lips shut.
“Now you are being a wise man.” Karla said with a cat like grin.
Roger growled and said, “I still say your chicken, or maybe even scared.”
Elijah laughed and said “Shitless.”
Karla and Elijah both laughed when Roger bowed his head and just sighed.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2014, 07:58:35 am »
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After dinner, they were all sitting around the kitchen table with small glass dishes of chocolate mousse. Somewhere along the line, it was revealed they all enjoyed board games and Karla had gone to fetch the Monopoly board from the game closet. She was busy setting up the board and arranging money. She had politely asked who wanted to be banker, but both Roger and Elijah conceded that mathematics was not a strong point for either of them. At that moment, Karla’s phone chimed and she picked it up. She listened for a few moments and then with a solemn expression on her face said “Excuse me for just a moment.”
A bewildered look passed between Roger and Elijah. Roger stood and said, “I think maybe I should check if everything is all right.”
“Of course, I’ll be fine here.” Elijah said and he watched as Roger quickly strode off to find his sister.
Elijah picked up the player tokens from the game, and proceeded to choose the piece with which he wanted to play the game. He had just placed the ship on the go space, when Chelsea began to fuss. He arose and went to the basinet and gently reached down to pick up the fussing infant.
He bounced her gently and made soothing sounds as he put her up on his shoulder. It was then he noticed her pink cotton pajamas were damp. “Uh oh guess maybe I should find a way to take of that for, you shouldn’t I.” Elijah said to the now squirming baby. He looked around and with relief; he saw a diaper bag sitting by the end of the love seat near the fireplace.
Scooping up the bag, he made his way to the love seat. He sat down and managed to fish out a changing pad, diaper and wipes from the bulky bag. He muttered to the baby “You are so small, how in the world is it you need so much stuff?” The baby burbled and smiled and Elijah could not help but grin. He laid Chelsea down and she began to squirm vigorously. He rapidly put a hand on her belly and said to her “Hey stop doing that. If you fall your mother will have my head on a plate.” Chelsea burbled again and stopped wiggling. Elijah smiled broadly and said, “Much better, now we can get somewhere.”
Working quickly, he managed to get Chelsea changed and into a fresh pair of pajama’s. He put her in her swing the kitchen while he washed his hands. Turning back, he grinned once more at the baby and pulled the swing over beside his chair. He was tickling her feet and making her squeal with glee, when Karla came back into the room.
Karla smiled warmly and said “Oh look at the two of you.”
Elijah smiled and said, “She’s such a doll.”
“Yes she is a wonderful baby most of the time. Very seldom does she have a bad night and she’s really very happy.” Karla said fondly of her daughter
“Oh crap, I’m sorry. I changed her but I left the diaper sitting on the love seat.” Elijah said about to jump up and correct his error.
“It is fine Elijah; her dad does it all the time.” Karla said quietly.
Karla retrieved the diaper and threw it in the trash out on the back porch. When she came back in, she sighed heavily as she rubbed her arms.
“Karla is everything okay?” Elijah asked with concern.
“Not exactly, the phone call was from the local police department. I am afraid I need to go out to investigate something they found on the beach.” Karla said tiredly.
“Are you a forensic investigator?” Elijah inquired with curiosity.
“Actually I hold degrees in several areas; this one is in connection with the fact that I have an oceanography degree with a forensic analysis of remains being a specialty of mine. I am a Professor at Boston University. I just happen to be on maternity leave right now.” Karla said with a light laugh.
“Okay and may I say I am impressed.” Elijah said as he arched his eyebrows in surprise.
“Thank you,” Karla said as she reached for coat.
Roger came back into the room as well dressed in his coat and other winter apparel. “I really don’t want you going alone Karla. “ Roger said with a worried look on his face.
“Roger someone needs to watch the baby, Edmund isn’t home, remember?” Karla said looking exasperated with her brother in law.
“I would be happy to watch her.” Elijah volunteered.
Karla and Roger both turned and looked at him with a stunned expression. Elijah said, “Hey my sister is three years younger, I am not exactly unfamiliar with babysitting.”
Karla said, “Elijah are you sure? I mean the weather has turned foul and I was thinking maybe you should go because sometimes when the weather is bad they shut the bridge between the island and the mainland down.”
“If that is the case I might actually be safer staying here with the baby.” Elijah said
“He does make a good point Karla. He probably isn’t used to driving in freezing rain.” Roger said as he looked at his sister in law.
Karla sighed and said “Well Elijah you just won nomination for baby sitter.”
“Good, because Chelsea and I have been having fun, haven’t we sweetie?” He asked as he turned to look at the adorable four month old. She giggled yet again and Elijah laughed as well.
Karla leaned down, kissed Elijah’s cheek, and said “God you are such an angel.”
Elijah huffed and said “A fallen one maybe.”
Karla playfully swatted his shoulder and said, “Stop that!”
Elijah just grinned and said, “Get going before the police call back.”
As if someone had heard him say the statement, Karla’s phone buzzed loudly “I am on my way Joe, give me five minutes to get down the beach.”
Roger and Karla sailed out the front door hurriedly and Elijah turned back to the baby, only to discover she was once more sound asleep. He just grinned gently, then leaned over and kissed her cheek. “Sweet dreams angel.” He said softly.
With free time on his hands, Elijah pulled out his laptop and sat down to check his email. He opened the browser and discovered an email from his sister. It briefly said that plans needed to be canceled for his birthday because his brother was called out of town on business, his mom had come down with flu, and unfortunately, she had slipped getting off the train today and was now in support cast.
Elijah sighed heavily and began to type out a response. Although he was disappointed, he understood all the circumstances and hoped maybe they could all get together the following weekend at his sisters place. He finished the email and hit send. Elijah did not like to admit it, but he missed his family. Truth be told, had been really looking forward to seeing them on his birthday. With another sigh, he resigned himself to the fact that some things just could not be helped.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2014, 07:58:55 am »
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Karla and Roger returned to house around one thirty in the morning. They were both soaked and miserable and were glad to get home. Roger went directly upstairs to take a hot bath, while Karla went into the kitchen and discovered Elijah seated comfortably giving Chelsea a bottle. She smiled and flopped down in the chair opposite him. “I repeat you are an angel.”
Elijah just smiled but did not reply. Karla hung up her coat, shrugged out of her boots and  threw her wet hat and gloves on the floor  not caring if she made a mess or not.
Elijah looked at her and said, “I made fresh coffee a while ago just in case anyone wanted any.”
Karla shook her head in amazement and stood up to get a cup. She also grabbed Elijah’s empty cup and made sure it was refilled, placing it carefully down in front of him. “It seems my daughter is quite taken with you.” She said giving Elijah a bright smile.
Elijah smiled back and said, “The feeling is mutual.” Chelsea finished the bottle and Elijah propped her on his shoulder and began rubbing her back. “So what was it that was found on the beach?”
Karla hesitated for a moment and said, “It’s a rather grizzly thing to talk about.”
“Are you saying that because in truth you aren’t supposed to discuss the case? Or is it because you are afraid I have a weak stomach?” Elijah asked seriously
Karla sighed and said “Truthfully, because I am not supposed to discuss the case.”
Elijah simply said, “I appreciate you telling me the truth. However, I do have to admit I am boiling over with curiosity.”
“I am sure you are.” Karla said as she tried to stifle a yawn.
At that moment, Chelsea let a huge burp and with a laugh, Elijah said “Good girl!”
Karla laughed and said, “Only a man could get that excited about gas.”
Elijah made an exasperated face at Karla but he looked at Chelsea and said, “Remind her of that the next time you cry half the night cause you tummy aches from gas.”
Karla laughed again, reached out, and took the baby from him. “She needs to go to bed and so do I. Just so, you are aware, the bridge is closed so you will not be getting off the island tonight. The guest room is on the second floor to the right of the staircase. Make yourself to home and sleep as late as you like.”
“Thank you very much Karla. This might be fun spending my birthday with you and your family tomorrow.” Elijah said pleasantly.
“I hope so; see you in the morning Elijah and thank you for all your help tonight.” Karla said as she prepared to go to bed for the evening.
“Goodnight Karla.” Elijah said quietly, and then he watched as she wearily left the room.

A few moments later, Roger reappeared dressed in his robe and pajamas
“I take it you aren’t supposed to discuss what was found either.” Elijah said.
Roger grinned as he grabbed a cup of coffee and then sat down. “Oh the contrary, on the way up the stairs Karla casually said I can’t discuss what was found because I am employed by the county, however what you tell anyone, well as long as I have no knowledge of it, I can deny anything anyone might slip up and try to allegedly reveal.”
“Hmm, interesting.” Elijah said with a sly grin. Roger took a swig of coffee and then proceeded to get the revelation.
“What was found on the beach tonight was not just an animal. There were human remains as well.” Roger said.
“Is it someone that you knew?” Elijah asked quietly, as he sensed Rogers increased tension.
“Yes it is. Her name is Candice Shore. She is …. Was one of Karla’s students? Last time she was seen alive was earlier this evening. She left the house about six to take the family dog, for a walk. When she had not come back by eight thirty, her mom tried to call her on her cell but she never answered. Her mom then notified the police. They began a neighborhood search and they found tiger cowering behind some trashcans behind a house not far from here... Joe then went down to the beach and shortly thereafter he found Candice.”
“Karla indicated it was rather grizzly, just how bad was it?” Elijah inquired.
“Very bad,  I have never see anything like it.” Roger said his eyes beginning to look haunted.                                                                         
Elijah fell silent and considered what Roger must have seen that could have been that bad.
“I’m telling you it was so awful all I could think was this just couldn’t be real, it has to be a movie prop.” Roger swallowed coffee again and then said “Screw this, I need a drink.”
“That sounds like a good idea.” Elijah said as he saw Roger stand and take down a bottle of Jameson’s whiskey from the cupboard. He watched as Roger took out two glasses and poured a very healthy amount into each of them. Rogers hand was trembling violently as he passed Elijah his glass.
Roger sat back down heavily and Elijah stayed silent as Roger downed half his glass before continuing. “Candice was torn apart by something big and very savage. They found one of her arms about twenty feet from her body, literally forcibly ripped from the shoulder socket. The other arm had been twisted in a way no human arm was ever meant to go. The bottom half of her was entirely missing but marks on her torso could only have been made by one thing; Karla said it was a creature with large serrated teeth.”
“Dear god in heaven…” Elijah whispered softly
Roger took another long draught from his whiskey, then looked at Elijah, and said “Oh it gets worse. Her breasts were chewed of down to the breastbone and her bottom jaw was torn clean off. Looked like whatever it was fastened its jaw around the bottom half of her mouth, bit down hard and just yanked as hard as it could. There was shattered jawbone showing and so much blood. The worst I think was the look in her eyes,  sheer raw terror.” He finished and merely sat holding his glass, staring into nothingness.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2014, 07:59:22 am »
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Elijah swallowed thickly and was afraid for a moment that he might actually lose his stomach. Then he managed to  croak out “Do they have any idea at all what did that to her?”
Roger turned and looked at Elijah, and then slowly rising from the table, he took off his bathrobe and shrugged into his coat. He pulled his boots on and said to Elijah “Come outside with me, there is something I have to show you.”
Elijah stood and quickly threw his coat on and followed Roger out the front door. They carefully descended the icy steps and went to the back of Karla’s Truck. Roger opened the cabs back window and lowered the tailgate. He pulled forward a large ice chest and opened it.
Elijah’s eyes flew open wide and he inhaled sharply. “What in God’s name is that?” he asked quickly of Roger.
“I have no idea.” Roger said truthfully.
Elijah continued to stare at what lay on ice within the chest. It appeared to be an arm, but it certainly was not a human arm. I t was hugely muscled, so long that it had to be bent at the joint  so as to just barely fit in the large chest. Gingerly, Elijah reached out and examined what some might call a hand. The fingers were incredibly long with five joints instead of three like a human hand. Although there were the standard five digits, they were thickly webbed. The entire appendage was covered in thick sickly yellow scales, but most frightening of all, was the curved wicked claws on the ends of the hand. Elijah just barely touched the tip of one and he winced sharply. He looked at the tip of his finger and saw blood freely flowing. “Those claws are straight razor sharp.” He said to Roger. He gingerly put the hand of whatever creature it was back down, and then he instinctually wiped his hand on his jeans. He had seen horror movies and not felt scared by them, but seeing the arm of whatever this thing was, had his blood running cold.
Half in a daze he turned and just stared down the dark street. There was nothing but the sounds of waves pounding the beach and gently swirling wind, it was almost too quiet, and Elijah jumped when Roger slammed the tailgate on the truck.
“Let’s get back inside. “ Elijah said quickly.
“I second that whole heartedly.” Roger said sounding every bit as spooked as Elijah did. As they neared the steps, a deafening clap of thunder smashed through the eerie quiet and a flash of lightening lit the sky a strange aqua blue. Roger and Elijah both took the ice-covered steps two at a time and by some miracle managed to not fall. Once inside’ they both stood breathing heavily.
Elijah swallowed and said, “I need another drink.”
Roger nodded in agreement and said “Absolutely.”
The storm growled furiously outside as Elijah went and sat before the fireplace and then took the second glass of whiskey Roger handed to him. Lightening split the night sky yet again and there a hellish boom from not far off. Instantly the house was plunged into darkness, only the small area before the fireplace remained illuminated.
“That last bolt hit something.” Roger said excitedly. He jumped to his feet with Elijah following. They both went out the back door and the driving rain pelted against Elijah’s face so hard it made his skin sting. Looking down the beach along with Roger, he saw flames shooting up into the night sky. “I knew it.” Roger said as he pulled out his cell phone and rapidly called the fire department. They went inside as Roger rattled off the information to the operator on duty and then he clicked off the phone and slid the glass slider closed.
Within moments, the sound of wailing sirens filled the night and flashing red lights lit up the front of the house for a moment as the engines sped by the house. Elijah and Roger just sat back down before the fire, both of them drinking, neither of them speaking.
Two hours passed and slowly the sky lightened, but it was a heavy threatening gray color. Roger looked out the window and noticed that even though it was now low tide, the waves were intense. He watched as the sky, which had stopped storming half an hour ago, slowly began to fill with small flakes of falling snow. Deciding the power was not going to come back on, and the house was now uncomfortably cold, Roger flipped the switch on the emergency battery that then fired up the emergency generator that Edmond had wisely insisted they get last year. An hour ago, Elijah had put his coat on and had dozed off on the love seat. Roger went and shook him and Elijah came around groggily.
“It’s morning and I think you should go to bed before Karla comes down and has a fit because you haven’t had any sleep.” Roger said sounding exhausted himself.
Elijah stood wordlessly and slowly made his way to the stairs. Feeling exhausted from his hair right down to his toes, he climbed the stairs and then slipped quietly into the guest room. The entire back wall of the room was made of nothing but huge windows from floor to ceiling. Elijah found the control for the blinds and closed them tightly. He shrugged out of his out clothing and wearily climbed into bed in his underwear, his head hit the pillow, and he went out like a light.

All was quiet except for the constant sound of wind gusting and whispering in low moans around the house. He turned over onto his stomach and his hand thumped solidly onto the floor. Soft snoring emitted from his unconscious form and the blankets were sliding slowly off the side of the bed. Suddenly, pain shot through his arm and he came awake with a gasp. His wrist felt like there were knives cutting into his veins and there was a force crushing his bones. He tried to see  but the room was pitch black, he floundered for the lamp and when it came on what he saw made him scream. The dismembered arm of whatever had lain in the chest was slowly crushing his wrist. His bones could be heard cracking and blood was spurting from his ruptured artery……………then the thing released his wrist but sprang forward and caught him by the throat. He could not breathe, he could not scream, his eyes bulged in panic as he desperately clawed at the wicked hand to no avail. He could feel himself beginning to spin and blackness was surrounding him, then he felt like he was falling.
With a gasp of air, Elijah came up off the bed. He was sweating profusely and shaking violently. His heart hammered in his chest as he sat in deep darkness. He reached for the lamp and damn near broke it getting it turned on. He sat there for a moment shaking. Then he ran hand through his now unruly hair and whispered “F*ck”
He shakily pulled himself from the bed and went into the bathroom. He looked at himself in the mirror and realized he looked fine, but inside he did not feel it. It was not like him to be prone to nightmares and he began to wonder if making this movie here was a good idea. He went to the bathroom and then turned the shower on and climbed in under the steaming water. Fifteen minutes later clean and dressed Elijah appeared downstairs. Karla smiled at him and said “Hey birthday boy.” He chuckled and said “Thank you.”
“Your cell phone has buzzed I think like 978 times since this morning.” She said as she handed it to him.
“Oh man,” he said as he noticed all the messages from his family. He quickly made calls, apologized explaining it had been a rough night, and that he had been sleeping all day. His sister  had inquired if he was aware it was five thirty in the evening, he informed her was, and that he was tired and part of the trip was with the intention of getting a bit of rest.
When had finished he sat down at the table and Karla handed him a large cup of coffee. He smiled and thanked her. As she sat across from him, she looked at him and said, “I have the feeling you didn’t sleep so well.”
“I had a nightmare which is unusual.” Elijah said.
Karla was quiet and then finally she spoke. “Perhaps not, given what you saw last night.”
He looked at her cautiously and said “Roger told you he showed me?”
“Yes and he said it made you as nervous as it did him.” Karla said softly.
“I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t unnerved by it.” Elijah confessed
“I think most of the people were who saw it had that reaction.” Karla said as she looked down into her lap for a moment and then back at Elijah calmly.
Being a keen observer of people’s reactions, Elijah noted that Karla did not seem to be as rattled by the gruesome find. “It seems you were not.”
Karla inhaled and said, “Well I specialize in looking at things that can be gruesome. Most of the sea life I have examined within the past ten years has been dead.”
Something within Elijah was tingling, like a soft electric buzz along the back of his neck going to his brain. When he felt this sensation, usually it meant he was sensing someone was not revealing the entire truth. Elijah narrowed his eyes and said, “There is more than you are telling me.”
Karla’s eyes flashed a little wide and then she cleared her throat. “If you tell anyone this, I’ll firmly deny it.” She said her voice almost shaking.
“I have no reason tell anyone anything unless what you know could harm someone.” Elijah said softly but pointedly
Karla looked down into her lap and then up again “I know of a situation where that might prove true, but I am not positive and I would ask your indulgence in the matter, especially since it is a very gray area of belief for most.”
Elijah stared across the kitchen and for the first time, he noticed the curtains drawn across the slider. He looked at her and asked, “Is there a reason the curtains are drawn?”
“I did that because Roger spent most of the day standing there just staring out at the water with his eyes nearly glassed over. I don’t know if it was his imagination working on forming the  script for your story, or if what he saw last night is haunting him so badly, that his mind is about to break.”
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2014, 08:00:05 am »
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Elijah was quiet for a moment then he said, “Perhaps it is a bit of both.”
Karla said, “Perhaps it is.”
“Where is Roger now?” Elijah asked suddenly
“He finally went to bed just before you came downstairs. I gave him a sleeping pill at three and he literally fought it until five.” Karla said, “I think he was afraid he would have nightmares revolving around what we saw last night.”
“That is perfectly understandable.” Elijah said, “Hey do you mind if I get some more coffee?”
“Of course not help yourself. I am also going to start dinner. I waited because I didn’t want anything to burn while I waited for you to wake up.” Karla said with a grin.
He went to the coffee pot poured more and laced it with cream and sugar. He sat back down and was about to question Karla further about what she thought might be going on, when her telephone chimed. While grabbing things out of the refrigerator for dinner, she answered the phone. From her basket, Chelsea began to wail.
“I got it.” Elijah said as he saw Karla turn and grinned at him. Consumed with changing, redressing, and getting a bottle ready for the now screaming little girl, Elijah missed the conversation going on that Karla was having. By the time, he had the Chelsea  laid back in the crook of his left arm and the bottle in her mouth Karla had hung up. She turned and looked at Elijah and asked, “Would you mind watching her for just a few moments? I need to go talk with Candice’s parents for a few moments.”
“No, that would be fine go right ahead. Anything else I can do while you are out?” He asked as she was whipping her coat on and rapidly shoving on her boots. As she headed for the front door, she said, “Make the salad!” Then he heard the front door slam and once again, he was left with the cute wiggling four month old. “I think this is becoming a habit with you and me sweetness.” He said with a laugh. Chelsea burbled and smiled. Elijah just smiled back and then he gently put her in her swing. He flipped on the radio on the kitchen counter and began making the salad as Karla had asked him to when she had hurried out. As he busied himself ripping lettuce, the house phone rang. Quickly he grabbed a hand towel, and dove for the telephone on the desk.
“Hello Addison residence.” He answered politely.
“Hi Elijah it is Edmond is Karla around she isn’t answering her cell.” Edmonds voice said from the other end of the phone.
“Oh well that is strange, I know she has it with her, but anyway she went over to talk to Candice Shore’s house to chat with her folks about something.” Elijah said as he held the phone between his face and shoulder, as he wiped his hands on the towel.
“Oh good, we are close friends with Adrien and Susan, I will phone her there. Thank you Elijah.” Edmund said politely and hung up the phone quickly.
“That was your daddy pumpkin, and he was in a super hurry.” Elijah said to Chelsea as she swung back and forth happily. Elijah washed his hands and went back to making the salad. He had just finished setting the table and placing the salad in the center, when Karla came back through the door.
She had forgotten her hat and her head was covered in snow. Seeing she was so thickly covered in the white flakes, he turned and pushed the curtains aside and looked out through the sliding doors. There was a fine mist of tiny white flakes falling rapidly. “This came up suddenly didn’t it?” Elijah asked quietly.
“They did say some snow tonight, but I thought they said it would be light. I have to say that this looks like maybe it is going to be more than the forecasters thought.” Karla said as she grabbed a paper towel and soaked up the snow in her hair. She took her dripping coat and boots off, and grabbed flat dust mop from the corner to go wipe up where she had dripped from the front door into kitchen. When she reentered the kitchen, Elijah remembered Edmund’s telephone call and he asked her if he had reached her. Karla answered him quickly “Oh yes he did and thank you for answering the phone. I know I did not remember to tell you to do that and sometimes people do call the house line if matters are important.”
“You’re entirely welcome; it is unusual these days to find people with landlines.” Elijah noted as he smiled and tipped his head a bit indicating his mild curiosity on the matter.
“You have to remember Elijah, Edmond is a physician, if the power goes out and the emergency generator should fail for any reason there is no way to charge a cell unless we plug it into the car and then that drains battery life from one of our vehicles. It is much safer to have the landline so he may be reached and if an emergency should occur. You become even more aware of these things when you have a child in the house.” Karla reminded him.
“Those are all very good reasons to maintain a landline. I think I would do the same if I had children.” Elijah said pleasantly. He watched as Karla slid two steaks into the broiler and then continued preparing dinner as she chatted.
“I know you well enough by now to realize your curiosity is making you wonder what Candice’s parents wanted.” Karla said giving him a sly look.
“Likewise I think I know you well enough by now, to take that mean you learned something interesting.” Elijah parried back to her comment.
“Touché′” Karla said and laughed.
“Alright then let me hear what you have found out.” Elijah said with a sense of glee.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2014, 08:00:24 am »
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Karla put down the large chef’s knife she had been using to chop up broccoli and went over to her coat. From the inner pocket, she withdrew a medium sized leather bound book. “Go sit by the fire and read this, I think that you will find it extremely interesting.” She said with her face showing that clearly whatever was contained within the book was something that had significance to what was going on.
Elijah silently took the book from her hand, went, and sat once again in the rocker before the fire. He flipped open the book and began reading and soon he was deeply enthralled by the information contained within. When he had finished reading he silently closed the book, came, and sat down at the kitchen table. Dinner was now finished being prepared and Karla had served the meal and was simply waiting for him to take his seat. She poured him a glass of wine and then took her own seat. Elijah silently began to eat, but Karla could tell he was deep in thought, so she did not disturb him. The silence lasted through the entire meal, and then as Karla began taking the plates off the dinner table; Elijah stood to help her.
“Alright I have been pondering this over and I keep coming back to the sound round of questions, so I am going to take the plunge and ask them.” Elijah said bravely.
Karla leaned against the counter with her arms crossed over her chest. “I figured you would after seeing that book.”
He began carefully because he was aware that this matter concerned people that Karla and her family considered friends. “Was Candice ever known to have hallucinations that you are aware of?”
“Not that I am aware of, Candice was known for being practical and clear thinking. As a student of mine she kept careful notes of observations and even included detailed drawings the same as she did in that journal.” Karla said matter of factually.
“So she wasn’t given to flights of fancy then.” Elijah said as he began to pace the end of the kitchen.
“Candice was open minded, but also a clear and concise thinker. She looked for facts and proof on a matter, but never discounted that not all things between heaven and earth are known to humankind. She left the possibility open that things beyond human explanation and understanding might indeed be real.” Karla answered truthfully.
“She mentions that she wants to tell her parents, but is afraid her mother would either not believe her or be frightened but what she thinks she has seen. That leaves me wondering what she thought her father’s reaction might be. “Elijah said as he stopped pacing and looked at Karla.
“I suggest you sit back down again as this explanation might get a bit lengthy.” Karla said
Elijah hesitated for a moment and retook his seat. Karla poured coffee for the both of them and sat calmly across from him leaning against the table. Twenty years ago, while I was still in college I met Candice’s father Adrien. Adrien, like myself, had interests in studies that were all over the map. I was actually taking a double major as well as many elective classes. My world consisted of my many studies and curiosity. I was not known for being social nor did I date even though many of the young men asked me out. Though many of them were quite intelligent, there was something lacking within that I found I required to be able to want to be near people. That was at least a willingness to believe in the unexplained. Then I met Adrien and the friendship was an instant one. Ever since then Adrien and I have followed each other all over the map. When you find someone who is a believer as you are, you do not allow a friendship like that to go unattended. Adrien has always been known for being quirky, so when he began an avid interest in cryptozoology, most people just shook their heads. I elected to jump on the wagon with Adrien. Over the years, we have learned to tame advertising our interest in the field because many people consider it a load of drivel and not real science. That does not mean that either Adrien or I have stopped believing, it only means we approach it differently. Adrien maintains his interest by doing research and he uses his findings to write. He is a well-known science fiction author and he teaches creative writing. I use my skills to help the community and to add research material to my interest in the field as well. I have also used my unusual interest to further other students interest in what might be out there, I do this by teaching mythology Candice was a student of mine in this class, but she also was in the marine program and a straight A student. Candice’s mother is shy woman who is given to being practical; she and Adrien often do not really seem as if they belong together. I don’t judge it; I just observe what I see.” Karla said matter of factually.
Elijah considered his next question carefully, “Karla what do you think killed Candice?”
Karla smiled slyly as if she had been dying all this time for him to ask the question directly. “I believe it was something from what most people consider to be myth. After all for what we now perceive to be myth, in all likelihood was once truth.”
Elijah found his brain fighting to except what Karla was saying, “Surely you can’t really believe that? I mean something’s are just imagined after all.”
Karla laughed heartily and said “Elijah do you really think the mind of man is all that creative? Examine the facts here. Humankind is notorious for thinking they are superior in all ways. People still try to say certain races and cultures are more superior and advanced than others. We are so busy vying for supremacy that most of us miss the wonders that surround us. If we can’t even settle ourselves down enough to imagine ways to try and get along together as a species, what makes you think we can dream up other species of intellect and strength. Roger is one of the most creative people I know, yet even he could not fathom the unseen. He refused to believe until the day he actually met Joshua Harrington’s ghost on the beach and saw the man vanish before his eyes. That single event changed his mind and his world. Elijah you are very intelligent, but I also detect you are analytical. Now there is nothing wrong with analyzing something, unless you over think a matter so much that you begin to justify saying the facts have to be wrong. So I will ask you this, did the appendage you saw in the ice chest last night look human to you?”
Elijah felt he was being examined under the watchful eyes of a hawk. He found the experience somewhat unsettling to say the least. “It doesn’t appear human, but that doesn’t mean that someone couldn’t have put it there as a hoax. “ He said trying to make his mind find a rational answer to this mystery.
“I see. “ Karla said as she stood and walked into the back laundry room.
Elijah heard a loud thunk and then something dragging across the floor. Karla appeared dragging the chest that had been in the truck, behind her.
“I put it into the deep freeze in case the sun came out and the chest warmed up.” Karla explained. Then she heaved the chest onto the table directly in front of Elijah and opened the cover. A wave of icy mist billowed up out of the chest and the smell that came with it made Elijah clamp his hand over his mouth and nose. He gagged and Karla handed him a small jar of light gray sparkling paste. “Put some of that under your nose and the scent will not bother you.” She told him quickly. He noticed in that moment that she herself had applied some to her upper lip.
Elijah fumbled quickly with the lid, spread a healthy amount on his lip, and worked it into his mustache as well. Within seconds, he could not smell anything. In fact, his sinuses felt completely numb. “Wow.” He said shaking his head a bit.
“In a few minutes the numbness will not be so strong. Karla assured him. “Take another look Elijah.” She pointedly instructed him. He stared once more into the chest and this time his reaction was not so panicked. Karla handed him a set of rubber gloves and she herself donned a pair, which she had in the pocket of her sweater. Elijah snapped the gloves on and then stood waiting. He watched as Karla brightened the overhead light and Elijah noticed that the appendage did not look quite so yellow now, in fact he distinctly saw spots of iridescent aqua along the arm.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2014, 08:00:45 am »
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“Notice the spots?” Karla asked
“I do now, but I couldn’t see them last night.” Elijah said truthfully.
“Now watch this.” Karla said as she snapped off the kitchen light and the kitchen was now dark. She withdrew a small handheld flashlight and flipped it on. The light that poured forth was deep purple.
“Is that a black light?” Elijah asked her with interest
“Indeed it is, now take a look. The spots on the appendage had gone from faint aqua to bright pulsing spots.
“That is sort of cool.” Elijah said with a nervous laugh.
“It gets even better.” Karla said with excitement threading her voice. From the side cabinet beside her desk she pulled a large case and flipped it open.
Elijah’s brow furrowed and he asked, “Is that a dissection kit?”
“It is more unusual that your standard dissection kit. I have modified it to be of use on unusual specimens.” Karla said truthfully her eyes now shining with glee.
Elijah watched as she as took a small battery with attached electrodes and quickly tapped the appendage. The entire arm jumped and the wicked claws began to flex. Instinctually Elijah took a step back. “Okay, that’s beyond freaky.” He said as he gave the appendage a more than cautious look.
Karla laughed and said “It’s alright it was a small dose electric charge just enough to initiate a brief nerve response.”
“Brief was enough.” Elijah said quickly.
Karla giggled and then she withdrew a scalpel. Elijah could not help, but step closer. Although he was nervous, he was fascinated as well. Karla Picked the appendage up just below the wrist area and made a small quick cut. For a moment, nothing happened and Karla said, “Turn the lights back on for me, please.” Elijah slowly found his way to the back wall and flipped the switch. He winced, as the room was flooded with bright light.
“Sorry, the light needs to bright for this.” Karla said as she apologized about the level of intensity the overhead light now let off.
Elijah stepped up directly beside her and what he saw made his eyes fly open in wonder. Blood was now oozing from the wound and it was brilliant royal blue. “Okay either this is the best made prop I have ever laid eyes on, or this is real and that is not human blood.” He said quietly.
“Now you begin to understand.” Karla said smiling broadly.
Next, she placed the scalpel down, picked up a pair of pliers, and proceeded to squeeze the tip of one of the claws. A single thick drop of something that looked almost like crude oil, dripped from the end of the claw. It land on the ice below and hissed wickedly. “Is that what I think it is?” Elijah said with a quick gulp as he felt his stomach tighten.
“Venom, probably so strong that a quick swipe paralyses the victims they choose to attack.” Karla said now speaking in hushed tones herself. Elijah quickly looked down at his hands and ripped the gloves off. His finger had been dully aching for about an hour and now he groaned at what he saw happening the tip of his index finger on his left hand.
“Karla, I think I am in trouble.” He said quickly.
Karla turned from where she was now repacking the appendage in the chest. “Why, what’s wrong?” she asked rapidly.
Elijah just held up his finger, which had begun to swell, and was now an ugly shade of red. Karla’s face began to lose its color. “Oh dear.” she said softly.
“What do we do?” Elijah asked quickly.
“Just give me a moment.” Karla said as she refastened the lid and then took the chest back to the freezer in the laundry room. When she returned she said, “Come with me.” Elijah followed her out through the laundry room and into the back downstairs bathroom.
From one of the drawers beneath the sink she pulled out a rather large first aid kit. She slipped off the old gloves she had on, threw them into a red bucket, and then slipped on a fresh pair. She flipped open the kit and from the contents withdrew a freshly wrapped scalpel. “What do intend to do with that?” Elijah asked pointedly
“Clearly you must have touched on of the claws on the appendage of that creature. My guess is you have venom in your system, probably only the tiniest bit but it appears to be working against you. The only choice we have is to open the wound and cleanse it.” Karla said truthfully.
“I was afraid you would say that.” Elijah said with a resigned sigh. He bravely stuck his finger out over of the sink basin and said, “Slice away.”
“Do you want to look away?” Karla asked nicely
“Blood doesn’t bother me.” Elijah said truthfully.
Karla shrugged and then without warning she quickly slashed the end of Elijah’s finger. Elijah merely stood there for a second as at first the wound did not seem to want to bleed. Karla look puzzled and asked, “You did feel that didn’t you?”
“I felt pressure, but not pain.” Elijah said his brows furrowed in puzzlement.
Karla stretched Elijah’s finger downward toward the drain and squeezed hard. Suddenly Elijah felt his fingertip pop and a gout of thick purple black with sickly yellow streaked puss spat from his finger. “Oh that was just disgusting.” Elijah said as he screwed up his face with distaste.
“No arguments with that observation.” Karla said as she continued to squeeze. Finally, the wound produced fresh blood and Karla squeezed and squeezed to get the blood flowing freely.
Now Elijah’s finger was screaming with pain. “Alright now it hurts, a lot… you can stop anytime you like now Karla.” He said with a wince.
“I am sorry, but I need to make sure we got all of it out.” Karla apologized softly. Elijah watched as she withdrew a packet of betadine solution from the kit and washed out the wound.
“Damn that stings.” Elijah said trying to resist the urge to yank his hand away.
“I know. “ Karla said sympathetically. Then she put butterfly stitches along the wound and covered it with gauze, and then being careful not to make it to tight, she put tape around the gauze and the upper part of Elijah’s finger.
He looked at the bandage and said with a laugh, “Happy birthday, here’s a scar so you’ll remember this one.”
“Hey at least you didn’t get thirty three of them.” Karla said with a lopsided grin.
“Exactly!” Elijah laughed.
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2014, 08:01:37 am »
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Hours later, the house was draped in quiet, and Elijah was sitting before the gently burning fireplace. Repeatedly he had reread Candice’s entries in the journal Karla had given him to read.

December 6, 2013
“I found something on the beach today. It is a staff with three hooked prongs and appears to be made of solid gold. It measures approximately two feet in length and is actually very heavy despite its delicate appearance. I want to show this rare find to someone, but something deep inside of me, tells me I must not speak of this find to anyone.”

December 30, 2013
“I was walking the beach again tonight and found yet another mysterious find. This time it was braided rope of sea green with a handle made of what looks like coral. Upon the end is a large spiked hook, wicked in its appearance and brutal sharp to the touch. Again, I want to tell someone, but my instincts tell me to keep silent. I know that either Professor Addison or my father might have knowledge of what this is, but I am too scared to speak of it. Why are these items casting such a feeling of dread over me? I am not given to extreme emotion, yet these things have me feeling panicked. On top of all that, I have been hearing a woman singing, sad and lonely, but so beautiful within my dreams. Then the dreams become nightmares where I return from walking on the beach to find my family brutally slain within our own home. What do these dreams mean and why does it seem they have now only begun after finding these items? I need to consider if my fear should rule my thinking or if I should get ahold of myself and tell Professor Addison or my father.”
January 15, 2013

“Although I have tried to avoid walking the beach of late, tonight was pleasantly warm and I thought perhaps I was being silly in avoiding one of my favorite past times. I began my stroll along the shoreline around nine this evening. My father I had left correcting papers in the den and my mother had gone to bed early. I walked up the street, turned and went up over the dunes and down to the shoreline. I think in my mind perhaps I had intended to talk with Professor Addison, but I found the house in darkness and I did not wish to disturb her. I simply sat down upon the sand for a bit and looked out over the ocean. There was no moon this night because the moon is now in its dark phase. The waves were oddly even gentle tonight and there seemed no visible threat, yet suddenly I was experiencing a feeling of dread spreading through my entire being. I quickly decided I should go home and I was walking down the beach when I heard the sound of loud splashing. I turned around and what I saw made my blood run cold. I felt like my chest was being crushed and for a moment I just stood there. Finally, my desire to remain alive kicked in and I turned and fled down the beach. When I finally got home, I went straight to my room to write all this down. I have made sketches of what I saw and I have drawn only one conclusion, there is something very wrong with me. It had to have been a hallucination, nothing could that terrible could be real. I hate to admit it, but it seems I am losing my mind. This will be the last entry I make and I am now vowing on my soul I will never walk the shoreline again. I think that tomorrow I may indeed tell my parents I want to go live in the city to be closer to school. I think I just need to get away from here.”
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Re:Unusual
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2014, 08:03:05 am »
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Elijah closed the book and tossed it onto the loveseat with a heavy sigh. He swung his coat on and went outside on the deck to have a cigarette. The snow was still falling and now the wind was increasing once again. With a great deal of frustration and effort, Elijah finally managed to get the cigarette lit. He stood there smoking looking out through the swirling snow over the ocean. The waves were now roaring upon the shore as high tide approached rapidly. The sky was an eerie luminesce dark blue. He knew the effect was caused by the snow, but damn it was spooky to see. He finished his cigarette and dropped it into the can where Roger through his butts and was about to go inside when he caught movement through the falling snow. He stared for a moment and then he decided he must have been mistaken. He turned to slide the door open and discovered it was locked. “Sh*t.” He swore vehemently. He turned now thinking perhaps the front door was still unlocked and he could get in that way. He headed down the winding staircase but before he reached the bottom, his footing slipped and suddenly he was flying forwards in the night air.
He land hard and for a moment, he was dazed. He went to push himself up to stand when suddenly he saw a pair of purple suede boots in front of him. He looked up and staring down at him, dressed in a long black coat was a woman with flame red curly hair that  was nearly to her waist and the most amazing blue eyes he had ever seen. He quickly got himself up off the sand.
“What are you doing out here?” She asked quietly.
“I was out having a smoke on the deck and I managed to lock myself out.” Elijah said with a light laugh.
The woman placed a finger to her lips for him to be quiet as she suddenly looked down the beach. She stood still as a statue for a moment then said in a hurried whisper “We need to get out of here, I think you better come with me.” She grabbed Elijah’s hand and fairly ran with him down the shifting sands.
Finally, Harrington house loomed large and unlit in the darkness. To Elijah’s amazement, he saw the woman vault the fence and keep on going. Elijah followed suit and wordlessly followed her as she made her way up over the dunes towards the house. He followed her around to the back and watched carefully as she produced a set of very old keys and opened the back door. She motioned for him to enter and said, “Be sure to watch your footing there is a step up.”
Elijah edged forward carefully until his foot bumped the step and did as she had instructed. He stood in the darkness and could hear her locking the door behind them. He sensed her move silently past him and then the light of single candle blazed in the kitchen. She held it low and he presumed it was to keep them from being seen. Silently she led him through the kitchen and to the back of the dining room, she reached behind the large china cabinet and suddenly a panel in the floor slid open. “Take the candle and go down slowly, I will be right behind you.”
Elijah carefully descended the staircase, and then joined at the bottom by the woman. She took the candle and turned through a doorway in the left side of the wall. They were now in a small room comfortably furnished in old-fashioned furniture. The woman reached above the doorway and he heard the heavy sound of grinding concrete as a hidden door slid tightly closed.
“You will be safe here.” The woman said as she took off her coat and began to light the fire.
Elijah wanted to ask exactly what he would be safe from but instead he watched as she fanned the flames in the grate. The flames grew and soon the room was pleasantly warm and gently illuminated by the flames. Elijah had reclined back upon the couch and the woman was now sitting quietly in a wing-backed chair, simply gazing into the fire.
“Who are you if I may ask?” Elijah queried with curiosity.
The woman remained silent for a moment and then she said “It is late, you should try to sleep.”
“I’m not tired, I slept all day.” Elijah said sounding a bit irritated.
The woman arose from her chair, and brought heavy knit afghan and spread it over him. Then she bent down and gently laid her lips on his. “Happy birthday Elijah, now sleep.”
Elijah wanted to object, but suddenly his eyes started to droop and a curtain of soft blackness descended over him.

Elijah awoke to someone gently shaking him, he looked up to find the woman dressed in her coat and smiling down at him. “The sun is up, so it will be safe to take you back to Karla’s house now.” She said as she passed him his coat. Elijah groggily arose from the couch and shrugged into his coat. He followed her back through the passage and once more through the back of Harrington house and out the back door. She quickly locked the door and with a soft smile, they began the walk back. When they were half way up the beach toward the Addison’s home, Elijah said, “You never did tell me your name.”
The woman laughed softly and then said “Laurelye.”
“That’s a lovely name.” Elijah said smiling at her brightly.
“Thank you.” She said softly as she pushed her swirling red hair out of her face.
At last, the neared the house and the woman stopped and turned to him. She opened his hand, pressed something into it, and said, “Be well Elijah.” Then she turned and began walking back down the beach. Slowly Elijah turned to go to the house. He had taken only a few steps when he opened his hand and looked at what she had given him. He opened a swatch of aqua and gold cloth and lying within was a silver mermaid pendant on silver chain.
Suddenly Elijah recalled how he had heard singing in his dreams the night he had gott3en so drunk, he looked at the swatch of clothe realizing it was the same color as the scarf from the mystery woman who had led him to the inn. He whirled around to run back and talk to her but he did not see her anywhere. Thinking maybe that he could catch up with her, he began running down the sand. He had only gone a little ways when he saw a long black coat, a green dress, and pair of suede boots laying close to the shoreline. A splash made him look up and for just a moment, he saw a graceful purple and gold finned tail rise above the waves. “It cannot be.” He whispered softly as he stood looking at the roaring ocean waves. Then he recalled Karla saying to believe in things of myth and he looked down in his hand at the necklace in his hand. Silently he fastened it around his neck and slid it beneath his shirt. He walked silently back towards the Addison home with only one thought ringing through his mind, this had been the most unusual birthday he had ever experienced in his life.



THE END



By- Michelle Burke
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