Shadoe Rose: Part Twenty-fourMature

Andrew had fallen
behind Selena, who in her enthusiasm, had run nearly the entire way.

            “You coming?” she called back to him from the top of the
hill behind Rose Manor.

            “Yeah,” he called back, out of breath. “Give me a second
to catch up.”

            She shrugged and looked past the hill, searching. They’d
just gotten to the Manor, and unlike how Andrew thought the search would have
gone, Selena seemed to know exactly where she was going.

            “Have you ever been back here before?” Andrew asked as he
reached the top of the hill where Selena stood.

            “No,” she replied, not looking at him.

            “Then how do you know where you’re going?” he asked.

            She shrugged. “Don’t you feel it?”

            “Feel what?” he asked as he gave her a sideways glance.

            “The energy,” she replied as she threw her arms back and
closed her eyes, enjoying the light. “It’s stronger than I remember, but then
again, it’s been a few years,” she said softly.

            “Thought you said you’ve never been back here,” Andrew
pointed out as he fell into step behind her.

            She shrugged again. “What do you mean?”

            “You just said that the energy was stronger than you
remembered, but you’ve never been back here,” he explained slowly.       

            Selena looked at him, her blue eyes flashing with an
unnatural light. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” she finally said.

            “Right,” Andrew replied after a moment.

            Selena turned away from him and ran across the hill,
nimbly leaping over cragged tree roots and large rocks.

            Not everything is
what it seems.

            Andrew looked around. He was alone, save Selena, waiting
for him near a tight patch of trees.

            “Hello?” he called out as he looked around again.

            Do not be afraid,
Andrew. I will protect you. Do you trust Me?

            “What are you doing?” asked Selena, suddenly next to him.

            He jumped. “Where’d you come from? You were over there. I
didn’t see you come back,” he stuttered.

            She frowned. “I’ve been here the whole time, Andrew,” she
said slowly. “Are you feeling okay?”

            He nodded. “Fine,” he lied.

            She reached out and squeezed his shoulder with surprising
strength. “Okay. Well then come on! We’re almost there!”

            Before Andrew could say anything again, Selena was
already sprinting away again. Andrew rubbed his shoulder. When did Selena get
that strong?

The End

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