The Crystal

“There is another piece to this mystery that the website you found does not address,” Linda continued, “mostly because the link is not generally known among my fellow associates. I mention it here because my personal research has suggested that there is a link.”

What kind of a link?” James leaned forward with his elbows on his knees. She had piqued his interest.

“Well … not consistently, but in more than one instance, an emerald crystal is mentioned either alongside this circular cloud legend, or has a separate entry around the same time and place.
This isn't just a normal crystal, though. It has a unique quality. When held up to the light, it displays a foggy image, instead of reflecting the light like a normal polished crystal.”

James and Brad stared at one another, neither one of them saying a word. Brad raised his eyebrows again, and James tilted his head to one side in response, nodding as he did so. Linda’s chair made a creaking sound as she leaned back.

“Let me guess,” she remarked. “You’ve seen a crystal like this.”

James did not immediately answer. He looked away, staring at the wall to his left. Brad squinted, never taking his eyes off of Linda, who was patiently waiting for James to put his thoughts together.

“Is it worth something?” James asked eventually.

“I’ll take that as a yes,” Linda replied. She leaned forward again, the chair creaking as she did so.

“Most scholars doubt the validity of this legend. The actual discovery of a crystal would change that completely.”

After waiting to see if she would continue, James added, “But, is it worth something?”

“The right museum would pay a large sum of money for it, and I can’t even begin to venture a guess as to what the right private investor would pay. So, I guess the answer is yes.”

After a small pause, she continued, “Do you have a crystal like I described?”

Once again James did not answer right away. He looked over at Brad who shook his head slightly. Get a second opinion, Brad thought.

At home,” James said while still looking at Brad. He shifted his gaze back to Linda. “Why?”

I'll explain all that later. Right now I think we should go get your crystal and bring it back here. The museum has the finest security system money can buy.”

Why wouldn't it be safe at Jame's place?” Brad asked.

It's a rather long story. I can explain it all when we get to Mr. Miller's house. I'd really like to go now.”

With that, she got up and headed towards the office door. James made a motion to follow her, but Brad grabbed his arm, keeping his friend on the divan.

“What are you doing?” Brad whispered.

“What do you mean?” James asked and raised his hands, his palms facing the ceiling.

“We don’t know her.” Each word was uttered so sternly and deliberately that James was taken aback.

“What’s the big deal?” James asked and placed a hand on Brad’s shoulder. “There’s nothing going on here.”

Brad glanced over at the doorway. Linda was patiently waiting on the other side. Looking back at his friend, Brad continued, “Something very strange is happening here. That cryptic letter from an old, dead guy with a fantastic story that I am not sure if I believe. Then, that crystal. I think we should think things through.”

“I know you have a tough time trusting people,” James said, getting up from the divan. “I remember what you were like in High School. So, let me just say that there are no negative vibes here. In fact—” He pointed at Linda “—she might be our way to another big payday and maybe some answers to these questions.”

Brad grumbled something under his breath as James left the office. Brad took a deep breath. I guess we’ll see what happens now, he thought.

When they reached the outside, Linda locked the door and made a motion for James to lead the way. When they got to his vehicle, Linda climbed in the passenger seat while Brad had apparently been delegated to the back seat. When they got to James’ house, Brad got a really bad feeling as James drove up the drive. The front door was wide open, but he clearly remembered dead bolting the door after James had forgotten.

The End

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