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The Chapel - Part 12 The Chapel - Part 12
by Theodore K. Nasos
2016-01-19 12:40:45
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That night I went back to my apartment. Suddenly everything seemed so small, claustrophobic. And there were shadows everywhere. For the first time in this little apartment I slept with a light on. Or at least I tried to sleep. Every hour I was awake with something scrolling somewhere inside or outside my room. Five o’clock in the morning I had enough. A cup of burning hot tea didn’t help at all and couple articles in the “Evening Standard” made me feel worse. But it was too early to do anything.

Six o’clock and a second cup of tea didn’t help either. I decided to get dress and go for a walk in the park. That could help. Fresh, cold air and all that. Six thirty I was out of the house to find out that the air might have been fresh but it was definitely frozen. An ice cold south wind was making my bones chill and the idea for the park was cut short with a walk to a local café where a hot cup of coffee and a cinnamon ban didn’t help either. What the hell Sir John was thinking? A curse?

“No,” Sir John said quietly after we pulled our eyes from the small cylinder. “I didn’t say anything about a curse, I told you a legend I hear while I was in those places. A legend that obviously has to do with this thing and tow murdered men.”

Chief Inspector Bennett coughed some smoke from his cigar and then slowly sat back in his armchair. “I cannot believe that. This is definitely insane and there is absolutely no way that I will go after wizards, men of magic and shamans. These were real murders and I think you are overreacting over something ridiculous.” He said all that but his eyes were back in the cylinder showing more fear than curiosity. Me? Well I was numb.

sir01_400_02I hate things that don’t make sense to me. I understand gravity and I understand evolution. Magic? There is no sense to such things like magic. Is all weird things people with dark aims practice. I served as a juror in one case which included a man of magic. His best trick was making purses and wallets disappear from the people he was watching. And even that he didn’t do it alone. He had n accomplice who was practising his own magic while these innocent people were watching the magician playing with a weird pack of cards. Oh there is evil but magic? Then it was that woman a few years ago that screamed here is devil, when she saw a young boy with no legs in the centre of the town, but she was crazy. Everybody said so.

Then there was this other story about that woman that she could speak with the dead. Edward, my dear college colleague had gone to see her and she told him that she spoke with his late father. She said he carried a lot of guilt. She was right, he had spent all the family wealth in card games. She said he loved his son and he wanted to see him. Edward never went back. When you dead father asks to see you, this is no good news and you keep as far away as you can.  

But a curse was a new thing and especially a curse coming from those places. There was so many stories coming from there and all of them accompanied with dead bodies. Never had the luck to see a jungle myself. Never wanted, never happened. I had only travelled once abroad and that was crossing the canal. But I had seen people coming from there. There was something hollow in their eyes. Even when Sir John was talking about these places there was something hollow in the way he looked. I mean there were all these unfinished sentences hinting places and events you were supposed to know and somehow you were supposed to be frighten of. And I was. Frighten of.

I stood quit suddenly moving pots and cups on my table. Slowly put on my coat and I was ready to step out in the cold, when… “Good day!” It was not a good day at all and this was the last person on earth I wanted to see this morning. “Pastor…” I whispered and looked at the man with the long sideburns standing in front of me, having just entered the café.

sir02_400“Good morning! How are you? A day for a nice early hot coffee?” I tried to think for and appropriate answer bit nothing was coming to mind. “And how is my friend Sir John?” Sir John was definitely not his friend and my reaction to that comment somehow brought life back to my brain. “Sir John is fine,” I said, “busy with solve a crime with Chief Inspector Bennett.” I felt somehow that I had to say that. Something like a warning to a suspect.

“Right, right. Then I shouldn’t keep you here, I suppose you will be needed.” And that was it. He continued inside the café looking for a table and I stepped outside a bit confused and disoriented after this strange morning meeting. He didn’t even say goodbye, I thought, why he didn’t say goodbye?

“You did what?” Sir John asked angrily. “Didn’t do anything. I was on my way out of the café when he entered the place. That all I did.”

“You said to him that I work with the police.”

“Nothing big, John. Everybody knows that you are working with the police.”

“But not this time. Not him.”

“Do you think he is behind all that? But he is a man of the collar.”

“So what? He is still a man.”

“Have you thought any way of action?” I tried to change the conversation. My morning meeting had been the first thing I said to Sir John entering his study half an hour ago and feeling that the day had moved enough for a visit to be considered appropriate and not too early. Sir John was awake when I rang the bell and his maid informed me and actually he had been asking for me. But obviously my news were not what he wanted to hear.

“I had thought of something but now, thanks to you, I have to change everything.” He said giving me another angry look. “At least you told, this is one good thing. You could have hidden it from me.”

“John, I would have never …” and I never finished what I was going to say. Sir John was out of the room and I was left alone there looking at the sun rising behind the French windows and the thick fog.

***********************************************************

Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 - Part 6 - Part 7 - Part 8 - Part 9 - Part 10 - Part 11 - Part 12 -

 


     
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