Friday, June 28, 2013

Dead Rite chapter 151.05

Harold moved one of the chairs out of the way and dropped to his hands and knees to clean up the spilled milk and cereal. “Let her go where?”

“Free, Daddy. You have to let her go free. She doesn't like being in there.”

He paused and rose until his nose was level with the surface of the table and looked at her. Had her time in the salt cellar cured her? Could they let her out now? He could certainly use her advice with regard to the displaced spirits Dill was trying to locate. Julie's ability to open a portal to the plane of the dead would help enormously. “How do you know that? Can you speak to her?”

“I can hear her screaming.”

“Oh.” He sighed. “That's not because of where she is, it's because of where she was. We took her to the Tower of Records so she'd heal from the terrible burns of a mis-thrown fireball but what we didn't realise was her special ability to hear the dead would drive her insane.”

“What's insane?”

“A lack of sanity.” Harold finished mopping up milk from the floor and stood, crossing to the sink to squeeze out the close and rinse it through. He sometimes forgot how young Lucy actually was and talked to her like an adult. “Thinking clearly.” He nodded toward Frederick, absorbed in an awards programme he professed to be contemptuous of. “Like when Uncle Fred isn't concentrating and he goes all misty. Julie was always sharp as a button but when she went insane, instead of being calm all she could hear were a thousand people all screaming.”

“Like when I'm trying to sleep and you and Mommy are fighting?”

“Fighting? We don't fight...” Harold put the statement into the context of a child's understanding. “Yes. Like that.”

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