Walking through the long, dry grass, the boy needed no map. He had been here many times before. The same day, the same time. Every week he would make this visit. As he neared the location he favoured the most, his ‘target’ rose into view. He had become fascinated by this building since the disappearance of his father two years earlier. This disappearance came as a shock to the 16-year-old boy. It was sudden. No sign that anything was going to happen or that his father was in any kind of danger. The grand estate was now in full view. So he stopped, and he watched. Just the same as he had every week that he had been previously.
The orange glow of the sun slowly began to dip below the far off hills. This was the sign that it was time to leave. The notes that had been made throughout the two hour stay were collected and placed carefully in a plastic wallet and then clipped into a red folder. Every other object that was strewn around him was carefully placed back in his rucksack. With everything packed, he turned and began to leave. Today was different though. On previous visits, the journey home would have been made without hesitation. Today, something compelled him to take one last look before the journey home.
In his fair-sized, detached suburban home, the boy was in his room. His only source of light was a table lamp that sat upon his desk. He removed all of the items from his backpack, and dropped them on to the bed. The final item to leave the bag was his red folder. This was not dropped to the bed. Instead, it was carried and placed on his desk. The front of the folder read:
PROPERTY OF JONATHAN KENT
He opened the folder to locate the notes that he had made earlier that day. The individual sheets of paper were removed from their housing, one by one. Once all of the sheets had been removed, he placed the folder on the floor at the side of the desk. Each sheet was laid side by side, in order of the times noted on each. Jonathan tentatively reviewed his scrawlings. However, It was getting late, so Jonathan decided that it was time to retire for the night.
The following morning, Jonathan awoke to find a note on the table in the hallway. It read: “Jonathan, I have just gone to run some errands. Be back in a few hours. Love, mum. xxx” After having read the note, Jonathan proceeded to get his breakfast and then went into the living room to watch TV. Suddenly, the letter box on the door was heard slamming shut. Jonathan went to investigate. A neatly folded piece of white paper lay upon the door mat. Written upon the pure white of the page were two words: “For Jonathan”. He delicately unfolded the sheet to see what it contained.
“I know that you have been watching. I wish for you to know that I do not mind. In fact, that is the reason for me composing this note. I wish to invite you to the estate for your next visit. Bring this note with you, and it will ensure your safety. See you there. Your attentive friend.”
Jonathan examined the note in great detail. Each crease, each letter. Everything was crafted perfectly. This perfection was precisely what made Jonathan suspicious… and inquisitive. He stared at the note a short while longer, questions beginning to race through his mind. He took the note upstairs and placed it in a plastic wallet of its own. This plastic wallet was then moved to the back of his folder, to prevent confusion with other documents.
When the day of his next visit arrived, Jonathan contemplated what he would do. 'Should I go to the estate or not?' This is the question he has asked himself numerous times. After some time and thought, Jonathan knew what he was going to do. He would do as the note said and go to the estate. He packed his rucksack and left home for his destination. However, on this occasion, Jonathan would take a different route to his usual one.
As Jonathan had watched this estate for some time, he recognised every aspect of its construction. He knew which path would lead him to the perimeter. The path was soon behind him, and the large iron gate was fast approaching. Upon his arrival at the gate, an armed guard appeared from a small office.
"Can I help you?" the small but intimidating man questioned. Without thinking, Jonathan rummaged through his rucksack to retrieve the note he had received the previous day. He handed it to the guard, who snatched it from his grasp. He read the note, occasionally looking up at Jonathan. After what had seemed to be three hours, the note was handed back to Jonathan.
"Follow me," the guard commanded. He went to his office to open the gate. The looming metal structure creaked open, and Jonathan and the guard began the long trek to the main building of the estate. For the duration of this walk, the guard kept his gaze ahead of him, never uttering a word. Jonathan felt this was the perfect opportunity to identify any other features of the estate that he may have previously missed. He did not identify anything unusual, but still he felt wary. However, this fact did not quell his anticipation, or inquisitive nature. What would Jonathan find when he finally got there? Would Jonathan Kent finally discover what had interested his father at the estate?