12. Butler [III]

“Okay, now, Master Peter, tell me what it is you want, please.”

Peter glanced at Phillip, as thought to check whether he was going to speak first. Phillip was studying his broad fingers.

“You remember, of course, the praised union that was made between my brother here, and the lady, Aidelle? The wedding day was postponed when war broke out between our country and its neighbour across the Big Sea, and my brother has not seen his belle since. On returning (and after hardly a hero’s welcome) back to our long-suffering country, Phillip returned once more to the site of the house the couple were going to live within. It had been caught up in the bombing. It was a wreck.”

“But, you would think that Aidelle would have had the sense to exit the house…” Phillip interjected, “If not for something that we said to each other beforehand. I was a terribly selfish person… Those actions were terrible… I should have stayed…”

“Of course not!” Peter snapped at him, whilst Richards looked between them, shocked at the news and confused.

“Miss Aidelle…died?” He muttered quietly.

“Well, that’s just the thing,” Peter replied, “Something happened to convince me otherwise, when we went back to the ruin last night at midnight.”

“You went out in the middle of the night, sir? How dangerous!”

“Richards, it was very necessary, and the trip turned out to be very informative. Please listen and don’t interrupt now.

“When we went back there, we saw what looked like a ghost, but the image of Aidelle (although she had not aged, or changed in health or style of living or clothing) looked too real, too alive. She even responded to my touch, and Phillip’s voice.

“Therefore, I now have formulated a crazy idea, based on something that I said without meaning to, about a ‘rip in time’. Aidelle might be stuck somewhere we cannot get to, too far away for to break through to us. From what Phillip has told me, and what I’ve seen, there’s enough reason to believe that time has broken over that house. So, Richards, do you understand?”

Richards stared, his mouth slightly open. Although he was a plain man, he believed in many things as well; in fact, his belief of the supernatural was stronger than that of young Peter. There were certain activities that Richards liked to participate in, but, if the household above found out what he enjoyed to do in his spare time, he would certainly lose his job. As displayed through Phillip, the Costello family had no belief of any supernatural.

“We think… Well, I have the view that…” Phillip started, anxiously glancing towards Peter, as though he was not sure whether his brother should hear what he had to say, and as though he needed his permission to speak, “I think we shouldn’t give up just yet.”

“Do you think it was a ghost then, sir?”

“I’m not sure. Do you think you could make a conclusion…?” Peter gestured into space.

“Well, we could try something, sir, if you please? We’d be able to find out then if you what you saw really was Aidelle’s ghost.”

“What do you believe?”

Phillip spoke in a clear, and determined voice, drenched with sadness, before Richards could say anything more:
”She’s alive, I can feel it. Surely, you two can feel…something, right? (What it is that you said, Peter? An aura?) There’s something that makes me know, deep inside my heart, that Aidelle is still alive. Then there’s that age-old question: where is she? What did we see last night?”

“A lover’s connection…” Butler Richards muttered to himself.

“So, you will help us, Richards?” Peter asked.

The End

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