The three Musketeers got something to eat and generally enjoyed each others' company. But Miwa almost spoiled the mood by talking to a fourth person. It was almost as rude as talking on the phone or texting other people while out doing something. 'Almost' because she wasn't talking on the phone but communicating with someone they knew indirectly [Dr. Muzro never did actually see this teenager and Anahita tried not to, but kept associating him with [as] Feral Eyes]. She included everyone in on it at least by somehow turning on 'speaker' of a private conversation in her head. It was quite… a different experience to be sure… Anahita continued to marvel at the creativity Miwa turned her power into. Miwa explained that other people can't hear the conversation, because they were not connected with them and also because she willed it to be private in that way. But, if they were obviously saying something that had nothing to do with anyone already there… So don't make it obvious had been her straightforward reply which was the nicer way of saying not to be so obtuse. It was her mind and her conversation so they couldn’t talk to him directly, but because she did allow them to listen in they could tell her the questions they wanted to ask him. She warned them that she was going to tell him that she was studying for exams so if she appeared distracted to him, that would be what he thought was the circumstance. They were fine with that lie actually, they didn’t interrupt her conversation at all –they were too fascinated, and really there was nothing further they wanted to know… that either could think of at that point anyway.
It was strangely a relief to know more about him and what he planned to do. They could feel his genuineness and knew that even if he faltered, his heart was in the right place. They all make mistakes and it was just as he said [or thought –his sentiment at any rate] that to have antipathy or do nothing is more dangerous than doing something mistakenly.
"Wait, so if you can communicate with him –and honestly, I couldn’t tell what were his thoughts or what he was actually directly replying to you with at some points [*Not that she's a mind reader but that some of his thoughts were unguarded] –does this mean that you could talk to us too?" Dr. Muzro asked with incredulity… and with a bit of alarm.
"Ah… that depends. If you're specifically thinking about me, there's a signal that alerts me to that even if it was subconscious or conscious. It's much stronger when it's conscious, of course –but I still hear that ping. I don't know directly those thoughts unless I concentrate specifically on hearing it –otherwise please don't worry –I'm not a mind reader. I don't even like the amount that I am able to do now. It's quite a burden. Anyway, the only reason we can hear his subconscious thoughts is because he's thinking about me and my mind picks up anything related to me to determine whether or not it's a threat. As for consciously, he is focusing on me therefore can communicate with me. If, for example, Dr. Muzro was thinking about me subconsciously, I would get the signal but not 'tune' in unless he consciously wanted my attention. I don't have to answer, of course, I can ignore him. On the same token, most people guard their thoughts to some extent anyway so when he contacts me, because there are some things he might not want me to know, I won't know it unless I pry. And if I have to hack that's a whole other lesson there –just understand that I can't know what anyone doesn’t want me to know. We have to be on the same wavelength, in other words, I cannot just read his mind if he's not thinking about me at all or contemplating about something similar to me at the same time."
"So this is pre social network… (We are networking using everything except for what we already have. And they call that 'amazing' but it's not. Ah money. Worshipping you has caused the marveling of mediocre matters! [Looks accusingly at his phone])" Dr. Muzro muses thoughtfully."
"Imagine if everyone used more than 0 percent of their brains then this is most likely how we'd communicate instead of using phones…" Anahita was a little too excited for Miwa's tastes so she continues in her dissuading tone [is there such a thing?].
"Eh. People don't think about important things… or they have thoughts that they don't actually consider. Ideas just stagnate and stew in that gray matter. This, I'm telling you, is more of a hassle… but if more people used more than 10 percent then they would have different kinds of thoughts which would admittedly be more thrilling to interact with –but new challenges of guarding such thoughts would arise… But that's just speculation, and not even a good one at that. At any rate, I have no reservations about him or his intentions. We all need to roll with the punches and be prepared –there are certainly more than one way to arrive at a solution and we all need to just do it instead of mulling over which is better because doing that always leads us to not do anything. That's my beef with those who have beef with diverseness [or multi anything]: that there's too many differences so that nothing will get done but the only reason that's true is because of that kind of mindset to begin with –nothing's really stopping anyone from doing anything –only words. Ah, I digress –let us enjoy the food and go to sleep… Er… good doctor ~ to what do we owe for the night?"
They both look at him incredulously.
"Yeah, I got dinner, too. Don't worry about it."
"Ah… Actually I would feel better if I at least paid for my dinner –it feels weird to accept so much from a stranger…" Anahita shyly speaks, looking apologetic especially upon calling him a stranger.
"I use the card and they don't separate so you're out of luck. It's alright, really. I don't mind. But if it made you feel better you can offer your money to me. However, I would refuse it. You don't have to apologize –it's ok, really."
Miwa was flustered –speechless for the first time. She managed to stutter out a thank you, and then she repeated it because that was all she could manage.
"Please don't think about it –you don't owe me anything, really. There are bigger things to be concerned about, I'm aware of that now –we have our work cut out for us. I have to help when I can with what I can and I'm certain you the same. Or did you forget that you saved my life?"
"? When… Oh… Right! Ha, ha. I didn’t even consider it saving your life even though we went specifically with the intention of saving you… yeah… I'm profound, not smart. Take that as you will." Miwa blabbed.
Anahita shook her head and Dr. Muzro laughed. "I will take into consideration how close to death you yourself were at the time [very grave tone]. [She briefly looked away] I'm curious, when we were escaping; just what was it that you were seeing? It looked like you walked around certain things that in… I suppose my time… [?] were not really there, yet you walked right through solid obstacles!"
"… Really? I didn’t realize we were seeing something different… Oh… what…? The inn looked slightly different from my dream-premonition from the reality I was in… and even that looked different than the reality you were in…? Tell me. Did you hear body less voice at all when I was with you?"
"No. In fact, when I was in The room, I felt a presence just disappear –I'd never seen it. I will even go so far as to state that even if he hadn't disappeared, I still wouldn't have seen his physical appearance… Before that, it felt like something passed through me to the stairway and into the room I think you may have actually led me to… But then, why was I able to see only you and not him?"
"You wouldn't have seen him because I told him to leave as soon as you stepped into the room … But also, it could be I was both in the teenager's thought of the inn as well as the real inn because Anahita and I were physically there but for him to return to his parents I had told him to wake up. …And even after that the look of the inn didn’t change for me." [*Fix this clumsy statement later]
"So does that mean he is body less voice?" Anahita wondered.
"It could still mean that it was Feral Eyes' –he was trapped in the hotel when we arrived. Well, let me confirm this."
"Hey! Teen Trouble!"
"… … … Really? That's what you come up with? What about the other nickname that I…"
"No time for small talk –can you describe to me what the inn looks like? More specifically, does it have a dungeon?"
"… We, my friends and I, have explored that inn a few times. It's quite possible we missed the dungeon but I don't remember ever having seen [anywhere leading to] it. Also when we were going to the room, the inn looked much better than what it does now. The inn is still impressive but overrun by vegetation. It's definitely not illuminated like the inn we were in was."
"Huh… okay! Thanks! Now I know that you are not body less voice. See you next semester."
"See you next… wait! How did you know…"
But she abruptly ended communication.
"There. See? Question answered. Also, don't give me that look you two. I have to do that. If we link for longer amounts of time he might become… attached… He's already quite used to connecting with me in this way and that's cute and all, but…"
"Hmm. Business-woman. But… It makes sense considering the kinds of things I've witnessed you do in such a short amount of time. You're quite… astonishing."
"Don't make me blush. Back to the topic at hand, I'm grateful you brought that to my attention and we, well I, was [were] able to establish how he's not body less voice. I suspected that since there's a barrier the voice couldn't cross but that the teenager could that he wasn't it but still; the other evidence helped that suspicion. By the way, Anahita, I'm curious –would you mind being the Admin of a blog site if he created the content and you simply dealt with people?"
"One does not simply 'deal' with people. Eh, well, it's no problem to me. I have nothing really substantial, rather, long term to do so that would be fine with me."
"Great! I'll tell him later –or you can tell him yourself when you see him. I can't be the messenger all the time."
Anahita was quiet for a time but at length, spoke, "Feral Eyes can be both physical and well… non physical [mental?] so what does that mean for us?"
"I'm not quite sure what you are trying to get at here… he's dangerous to us both ways…"
"Huh..." Dr. Muzro was lost in thought. They waited patiently for him to continue but he remained silent. Miwa supposed that if it was about the client, he would maintain confidentiality. She could respect that –but she hoped there wasn't something there that she could add to her base of knowledge. Already there were three: Feral Eyes seeming to be the head, and Body less voice and Zoiyah. What was Zoiyah's role in all this? She knew virtually nothing about this woman except that she seemed to exist only in relation to the town, specifically to that inn… Perhaps there was something about her. She would do some research about it later. The only other things she knew about that harpy was what Dark Brown Hair revealed to them and her real name. A thought lazily sauntered behind her eyes. Normally, she let idle thoughts wander, unabated but something about it shook her to her core and compounded her sense of dread. Other than fulfilling a pact –what if Feral Eyes was only securing a location and by extension, sacrifices [townsfolk] for some thing yet to come? Then it would only make sense that that thing wanted more sacrifices in the form of a city full of people –YOUTH and where was ripe with youth other than cities ~ especially [literal] univercities? 'They had to act fast' being the running recurring theme as well as the understatement of the century only cemented her resolve to not only gain support but also diminish [Feral Eyes' at least] movement and strength. She described her revelation and they all agreed that they would move with haste.
"There is power in identity, in knowing a name. I really need, more than ever to know their names –not simply what they respond to, or what they responded to across time and across cultures. All ancient beings have an original name –their name –and to know it we could put a stop to them once and for all."
"… Really… I think they know this which is why those who spend their lives in black magic –the higher level ones, keep that well guarded. How do you propose to… Oh no… you're already creating a plan. The less I know…"
"What? How would you obtain such knowledge?" Dr. Muzro asked despite conceding that Anahita was all the wiser for not wanting to know. But he felt alive and feeling alive gave him the permission to reckless abandon.
"If I can somehow connect with someone who knew…"
"Ah… and how are you going to meet said someone? Just go out and introduce yourself to everyone you meet?" Dr. Muzro sardonically asked. She gave him the 'don't be simple-minded' look.
"When you want to keep something guarded, you have to think about it –if I 'listen' in with what I think to be 'key' words, I could perhaps be on the same wavelength at least. It's a small connection and that's all I need. I can work my way up from there."
"I'm glad you have such confidence considering they probably spend all their lives and have nearly perfected the art of guarding their thoughts."
"Eh. I can practice. Anyway, I'm quite aware of that –thanks for your voice of confidrealism." Directed a pointed, actually quite challenging stare Anahita's way. Anahita realized that she does quite often shoot down Miwa's seemingly crazy ideas –but when she reflected upon it –she could see [consistently] calculated gambling reaping results. In the beginning, she had thought that that was crediting Miwa too much, but the longer she was with her, the more that she recognized the wild brilliance and gift that she had. It both filled her with trepidation and awe. And that was why she, often against her own good, sensible [read prudish] judgment sought out adventures with Miwa –there was never a dull moment.
So she offered, "… There's a waterfall in the mountains four hours away from our school. But it's a bit tricky to get to… the mountain itself, I mean. You would need a car to get you there."
"How do you know that?"
"I do meditate you know."
"Ah, yes! Come to think of it, for someone who couldn’t sleep you sure reached me rather effortlessly through meditating."
"Eh ~ don't make it less than it really was –it wasn't that easy. … But it wasn't all that difficult either."
"Ah ha~! There –that's the confidence I've cultivated in you!"
"Hey, don't take all the credit now."
"Well, what percent of that could be attributed to me? It's too much to think. So simply I took all the credit."
"That's incredibly lazy…"
"I do quite enough mental labor."
"Yeah… actually you do. Oh, let's not leave out the good doctor!"
"Ah, no I can't quite contribute anything to that conversation worth noting. I'm not so nearly as enlightened."
"Stick around long enough…" Miwa auto-responded.
They laugh. He was thinking about it seriously enough, though. He begins, rather sincerely, "Even if you are able to share their wavelength –won't they be able to tell?"
"I have no doubt that they could! But if they were in an area where there are many others who always share the same wavelength it would mask mine for a short while at least. What I mean is that I would have to sneak in to where they gather and not be noticed. That, I think is the real challenge… Or… I could introduce myself to everyone until I find someone willing enough to humor me. Ah! Or even someone who was losing his mind due to old age or illness or dying would be sufficient! Well, perhaps not sufficient, but a start at least…"
She fell silent as she formulated plans as quickly as she discarded them. Anahita figured that Miwa was going through this because to cliché, desperate times call for desperate measures. She must be more worried about the situation than about herself which was stupid, as usual! Anahita hasn't met anyone quite like Miwa and if they lose her now [or ever] that would be a crippling blow.
"Please stop worrying so much, you're distracting me…" Miwa murmurs in a half trance.
"Oh! Oh… sorry…" But she couldn't help it. She took out her phone –she was going to put her researching skills to the test –she will find members of different cults and their levels and aid Miwa in her search of names. Out of curiosity she briefly scanned over what Zoiyah meant. And was rather amused. She bookmarked the site, reminding herself to look deeper into that later.
"I will interrupt you only briefly –for I do believe it's time to head back to the hotel. More people are arriving –and I believe we've stayed here long enough."
They agreed and headed back to the hotel.
… … …
Once they arrived at the hotel, before he left them to their own devices he gave them his business card and got ready to go to bed. He wasn't certain, but perhaps they would contact him in case they needed him for something. He did like feeling useful. Oh right! The documents would have to be hidden and kept safe somewhere. He could mull over that later –he felt weary in a way he'd never felt before –even during the 'car incident' he hadn't felt this ragged. But as he paused to ponder what that weariness came from, a sense of dread crept in and rested upon that exhaustion. What made him so uneasy ~ he became anxious about going to sleep. But he needed his rest… and a car. He would have to remember to call the car agency tomorrow ~ yet he didn't want to be asleep. So many things… He didn't want to bother Miwa, but he needed to know if she could help him so he opened his door. He was surprised to find that they were still there –Anahita staring intently at her mobile phone and Miwa scrawling on the hotel stationery.
"Ah… Psychick…? Er… well… I was wondering –do you have a sense of foreboding? It's settled in quite cozily –and I can't sleep because of it. I'm actually afraid of going to sleep."
She stops scrawling closes her eyes and smiles because the name amuses her. She seems to be choosing her words rather carefully, without opening her eyes or turning to look at him, "For me, it's always been there and become especially strong. I too cannot sleep. I can't even be bothered to worry about studying tomorrow for my exams that are the day after… It's… troublesome to say the least…"
"Oh… so… wow… um…"
"On nights like this, then what do you do?"
"I don't know. I haven't had experiences like these… but… didn't I also say that fear should not cripple us? It should not prevent us from acting and this includes sleeping. So I think in case you are worried about being stuck in your dream you need to use a safe word and hold on to that. Be extra perceptive about all details in your surroundings so that when you 'wake up' you can tell that it's another dream and not reality."
He nods. That was sensible enough –he could do those things –he was in fact very grateful for that advice, he tells her so and heads back to his room [They had decided he should stay in his room and they would camp out in the living room]. He looks at everything with great focus, or at least what he hoped was great focus, there was a niggling fear still but he forced it back down and concentrated.
"Man, maybe I should find a waterfall to meditate under as well. This focusing is rather taxing."
Then he thought of a safe word and feeling more secure and prepared he drifted into a deep slumber.
The next morning, he awoke a bit early. He opened his door and peeked out to see whether or not they were sleeping. In fact they were in the same position he had left them in that night. Miwa must have sensed his presence for she said,
"No worries. You're not dreaming. We haven't slept."
"Oh, to be young and in college again…"
"I won't be pulling too many all nighters again myself." Anahita groused. She really hated not having slept but she couldn’t not continue her research. It was not only important but challenging in the way that would mock her if she gave in to quitting.
"Did you sleep well?" Miwa asks.
"Yes, actually. Your advice worked really well."
"Good. I'm glad that it worked since I was pulling it out of my ass."
"Kidding. I've done it before myself so I know that it works… it's just… last night was a night I needed to stay vigilant."
"She wouldn’t tell me why." Anahita growled.
"You don't have to worry about why."
"How can anyone help you if you continue to keep secrets?"
"Perhaps I'm practicing being a high level practitioner of..." she began, jokingly.
Interrupted angrily, "But there has to be someone you trust enough to help you. I can't sleep soundly knowing you're in danger."
"… It's not as though my mother had a circle of friends either. So I'm not really left with too many options here…"
"You can go out there and find someone!!"
"[*Sigh] It's not that simple. People are still people –everyone has intentions that you can never be sure of and what's more certain circumstances make us to be what we never would've thought ourselves to be. That's true of …regular… people but it's especially dangerous for 'us'." She really hated using language like that and didn’t even want to describe it in that way, but they argued about it before and Anahita simply didn't, couldn’t understand the level of difficulty her circumstance entailed... engendered… well, it's okay –she knew she would have to find someone soon but for now, she would stay vigilant. She didn’t really know how long she could, but she would have to try for as long as possible… well, until it hindered her capabilities too much.
"What about his mom?" Anahita desperately offered.
"… … … You know what? That thought had actually crossed my mind." Anahita's eyes began to sparkle. She tentatively allowed herself to hope.
"Please, don't do it, don't add a 'but'…"
"Except, I have no connection to her. Also I'd rather not have to deal with around or near Teen Trouble more often than necessary."
Crestfallen, "Oh… right…"
"It was a great suggestion, but I have to consider her as a last resort. I do really appreciate your concern for my safety –please don't give me that look. Believe me, it's not for a lack of trying –I will still look for more trustworthy companions, I've always had –it's just perhaps not the right… timing or execution on my part." She returned to scrawling on… when did she obtain more hotel paper? She practically had enough material to write a book. At any rate, Dr. Muzro asked them if they wanted to order breakfast or go out to eat.
Miwa spoke, "Anahita doesn't eat breakfast, usually and as for myself… I'm starved. And tired –so tired. But… I'm not sure if I can even eat…"
"Oh –well, it's still early so you can think about it…"
"I would have inserted some smartass remark about your uncertainty to eating, but I'm too busy getting my own ass handed to me at the moment…" Anahita murmurs, eyes never leaving the tiny screen of her mobile.
"Yep…" She accepts rather unconcerned and unsurprised.
"Ah… well, I'll leave you two to continue your… works…"
"I would like to experiment with you."
"Um. What… experiment…?"
"It was actually my first time communicating directly with someone like that. And… well actually he summoned me [for there's no other way to really describe it] first so I didn’t use any energy –I didn’t feel tired afterwards at all –and that's bad because I wanted to test my limit with distances. I would have to withhold on that until a later time, though. So, for now, I wish to see if I can communicate with more than one person and how energy levels are affected… Oh… well I imagine I can connect with many people, rather I should have said –whether I can concentrate on more than one –how much energy that would take ~ how much of a toll it would take on my body."
"Oh… well ~sure. It's not like I'm doing anything important or even have anything planned. How can I help?"
"Yo ~ can you break long enough to try this?"
"Yeah…" she says distractedly. "Yeah, sure." She says more focused and less intense with her target.
So Miwa explained how she planned on opening up communications. First she thought about Anahita.
"You can hear me, right Anahita?"
"Loud and proud." Can he hear us?
She stopped talking for a bit to ask him if he's indeed heard what they said. He claimed he didn’t. So then she asked him the same question, only in his head this time. He denied the second time. He had no reason to lie. Then she spoke with Anahita and interrupted herself to ask Dark Brown Hair if he heard the conversation. He said he couldn't. Then she asked him to speak directly to Anahita himself. He tried but was unable to connect.
"Hmmm. I don't know why this is unsuccessful. It appears that I can talk to you both but you can neither hear nor talk directly to each other within the same vicinity. Even when you were concentrating…"
"Ah, I think maybe I wasn't focusing as much as I should have and I'm VERY tired myself so I theorize that it affected the outcome." Anahita admits
"…Hmm… maybe… But that's okay. I now have stronger connections with you two so, Anahita if you are worried about me, you can see to my safety yourself. And Dark Brown Hair, you too have some alternate way of… contacting me at least…"
"Ah, if I may. I might have affected the experiment by being heavily doubtful –it was subconscious, I caught it only at the last moment which was how I realized that it came from there."
"Hmmm… knowing now that you yourself can speak with me mentally, are you more open to the idea of a 'chat room'?"
"I am willing to try again. I'm sorry Anahita, for wasting your time –I know you want to get back to your researching…"
"Oh –don't apologize –it's good that she made me take a break. I can imagine that if I were more alert, I wouldn't be as calm about this whole thing –it's still quite a bizarre experiment for me to subject myself to [insert she doesn’t always try new things]. So take as long as you need, I can wait."
These two women do seem to possess an extraordinary amount of focus. No… that's not quite right –one cannot have focus, one must have self discipline, and in their case, train for it. It was fortuitous [he doesn't believe in luck, really] that he was the only one who had gotten the proper rest since he felt alert enough… but perhaps that was the problem –he should be more relaxed. That alertness he needed to change into focus, but what could he focus on?
"Psychick –I may be too alert…? What can I focus on specifically?"
"Well, since we are together, you actually have more options –were we all farther apart that would be limited to how strongly you are thinking about either of us in however way you normally focus on a person… I don't know what you pay most attention to about people –but for an example if you think about a person's physical features you should concentrate on that imagery… but… it might be tiring at first if you're not used to focusing on both the imagery AND talking to that person at the same time. When you look at us specifically you don't even have to focus on us but on what we're saying."
"… That makes sense. I think because you're a conduit I can actually try focusing on Anahita."
"Okay. Then, shall we begin?"
They both nodded. "Try not to overdo it –that could still work against you, you know."
He did know. He'd second guessed himself so many times when he over-thought something and believed that something wasn't possible so he froze –didn’t do it. But he would have to now practice unlearning the habit he'd cultivated the majority of his life. It was like a best friend that he couldn’t bear seeing go –and despite great distances, could pick up where they left off as though they never separated. He didn't want that –raw resolve would have to initiate the first step and self discipline would have to create the new habit. One step at a time. Day by day.
While he was thinking these things he thought he heard 'so old.' He automatically and indignantly protested, "I'm not old!" They both cringed. He didn’t realize the thought and his voice were both loud.
"Extra assignment: you might want to try not to sound crazy talking out loud like that." Miwa flatly stated. He blushed apologetically and tried to voice it but the corners of her lips were unmistakably upturned.
Anahita smugly claims, "I don't know very many people who can ignore statements that are about themselves consciously or unconsciously –I thought this would work!"
While they were celebrating their little victory he says in his mind to them both, "Yeah, yeah –congratulations you're both so clever."
They giggle at him. It was rather weird hearing laughter reverberate in his head.
"Chocolate…?" Anahita tilts her head and looks at him.
"Ah, okay –so I did guard my other thought ~ you caught a red herring. But I wonder what my subconscious is thinking…?"
Impressed, "Oh… you learn quickly, I'm proud of my student!"
He felt his face flush but quickly says out loud, "It is a strenuous ordeal. I will have to stop for a bit… but also that I think that I don't quite trust myself yet in keeping track of talking to you or someone else out loud while conversing to either or both of you silently at the same time (or close enough to it, anyway) so I'm going to withdraw for now."
Miwa nods in agreement. Even though she truly thought they didn't have the luxury of time she understood that there still must be rest and recuperation. He did learn quickly, after all… unless it was also a habit of his profession [or personality] that he kept thoughts separate and guarded. She wondered now that they were connected if she could snoop around for client information without getting caught but she didn’t want to destroy what trust he'd allotted her and two –even though he had excellent recall and she was VERY curious and even a bit envious about people like that [but not too envious because with the gift that she has, she would want to forget some people and some events] she couldn’t also help get the feeling that even if he didn’t know she saw the information, someone else [namely Feral Eyes] would know too –or have easier access to other parts of his memory. Whenever a memory is accessed by a backdoor it cannot be closed in the same way because only the person whose memory is read knows how it was sealed specifically. And it will clearly have to be changed especially if that person knows someone has been tampering with memories. They both had their memories of Feral Eyes specifically erased [although he's regained his] –she knew how that felt and didn't want to subject anyone else to that kind of violation. She also knew that if someone who was trying to read or steal or change memories wasn't careful, that memory could rush to the forefront of the person's mind, warning that person that they are thinking of something unrelated to the situation they are currently in so they would focus on what triggered it –although they may not precisely guess they are now alerted so it's best not to try the same memory again… But that gave her an idea. She couldn't recall anything about her dream that had Feral Eyes in it, but if it could be triggered, perhaps she could finally review the details and know more. What if she didn’t want to know…? A small voice chimed in her head. It was annoying and insistent –why wouldn't she want to know? NOT knowing was what had been bothering her in the first place so why that doubt, and why now? No, she would go forth and propose he try to trigger her memory.
"Dr. Dark Brown Hair…" Miwa began.
He looked startled. Why so formal?
The surprised expression wasn't lost on her, but she decided to be straightforward in her request anyway before that niggling thought could change her mind, "Would you mind trying to trigger one of my premonitions?"
He knew exactly which one she was referring to. But he was quite taken aback why she would ask him over her friend. In fact, a sudden dread descended upon him with such force that he staggered under the impact.
"I'm going to refuse. Something will go horribly wrong and our efforts will be for naught. The tide will turn favorably for Feral Eyes… I don't know and don't care if complete horror came over me from Feral Eyes himself or from my own… intuition… [he still has trouble speaking this kind of language he was so disdainful of in the name of pure reason, intellect, and evidence] but leave that particular premonition alone. Please. You had anxieties about it too –you of all people should know to listen to it!"
"Thank you for that confirmation."
"Wha…?" Confusion plainly upon his face. He was expecting some protestation even though time and again she proved how practical and sensible she was. For a horrifyingly long moment, he had feared that there was desperation that would overcome rationality. He still had no way to be certain, but for now he chose to trust that statement at face value.
"I needed someone else to tell me that as well, not simply a small voice in my head. I honestly don't know where that voice of doubt came from, however, and I must investigate it further. You're right in that you don't need to care where it came from –but for me it makes the difference between, often, life and in between life. Death will come later… perhaps."
He didn’t quite know what to say to that, in fact he didn’t quite know what to say anymore anyway with respect to everything that had happened.
"But… I do think that if I had another pair of eyes seeing what I went through with my client on that day, you could possibly see something that I didn’t or wouldn’t give thought to."
"… Are you sure?"
"I normally wouldn't even though he is no longer my client –however, this is more important –I wouldn’t be sharing anything with you more than what happened on that day specifically."
"… You trust me enough to do that?"
"Thank you. Okay, then can you think about it and send only those thoughts to me? I rather you do that instead of me invading… I don't know how you organize your thoughts and so I may accidentally ruin something without meaning to…"
"Do you mean, for example that some people's brains are exactly like file cabinets –so systematic whilst others are like cluttered attics?"
"It's a very responsible and acceptable request. Wait…"
And so she received images of that Monday –the last day that he saw his client and the first time he 'saw' Feral Eyes. She reviewed the images slowly and in great detail: she saw what his office looked like; she felt his emotions; she heard the conversation and… she was able to see the exact moment that 'Feral Eyes' occupied the client… no… that wasn't quite right –he was actually leaving the client –exhibiting that predatory glee of having a new toy he could play with: Dark Brown Hair. Dark Brown Hair was tired so Feral Eyes even inhabited a cat just to [tease] instill some fear into a man who prided himself on having a sound mind and higher than normal intellect.
She was also wondering about why Feral Eyes needed a messenger and provided him with another job… [that was rather… kind… Well, it probably wasn't really that big a deal for him] She contemplated Joe Shmuck's character: he didn’t ask questions, did what he was told –he was simple and didn’t want riches so basically he's unimportant… [hmmm so that's probably why he provided something anyway…] she wondered who the former employer was; what the message was specifically and if that former employer had any ties to… someone else more important… why was he killed –but she didn’t know that for certain since the Client didn’t actually witness anything or bother to validate the 'he's dead' claim. The occupation was from loading cargo to loading cargo… so transporting [what?] can be added to the list of important. It all pointed to her suspicions about Feral Eyes preparing the way for someone or thing stronger than he… or an army of… she didn’t complete that thought.
After mulling over these notions, she sent it back to him. "I'm sorry if I have added nothing new to your conclusions. I have more questions than answers and I didn’t want to pry about his information specifically unless…?"
He was silent for some time. "… No, I haven't actually considered any of these in quite that kind of detail. Not that I've had time since I only recently regained that memory… However, I know for a fact that I wouldn’t have even tried thinking of Feral Eyes as leaving my client. Maybe he was just departing then because he was preparing to find someone new and thought I would be a good candidate… rather was checking to see how good a candidate I could be… although I have no idea what I could possibly know that he would need… My other clients aren't in any positions of authority or have anything to do with transportation, information or electronics or defense..."
"Maybe he didn’t need your knowledge as much as he needed a new vessel in a new area…?"
"Hmmm… my client did in fact mention that, and I quote: Perhaps we're not the source –but all weeds get pulled out and discarded. We just happen to have many bad seeds clustered here… 'Feral Eyes' will leave no stone unturned. End quote. Leave no stone unturned for what? What is he looking for?"
"Is it time for breakfast yet? I'm famished." Anahita intrudes, no apologies.
Taken aback, "Oy, that's my line. Thief. Anyway, yes. My stomach concurs."
"Shall we eat in…" Dr. Muzro begins to ask.
"Out!" They both shout in unison. They were very tired of the suite's walls –they needed a change of… walls."
"Okay ~ I get it, that was a dumb question ~ sheesh."
They all laugh, wash up and prepare to leave. As they headed to Anahita's car, Miwa thought she felt a slight tremor.
"I must be tired. I could have sworn I felt the ground shake beneath me."
"No… I did too…" Dark Brown Hair spoke.
"Was that an earthquake? Here?!" Demanded a wide-eyed and almost ready to panic Anahita. Almost ready because she could also be placated by a well reasoned answer which Miwa almost soothed her with except…