Sunday, October 18, 2015

"It's a hundred percent wax," The white-haired officer concluded, raising his eyebrows.  He cautiously pressed his finger into the palm of the severed hand, and it left a small impression.  Professor Lyons instinctively flinched.

"How does it look so realistic then?"  He asked, peering down into the box that was sitting on the table of the evidence room of the station.  He was somewhat relieved that there wasn't someone out there who was missing a hand for this purpose.  There was enough violence enough in this town.

"Whoever did this," Officer Carr said, "Is highly sophisticated.  Either, he had this made somewhere, or he carved it himself."  Professor Lyons had already realized this, but now the question was why?  Why threaten him like this? 

"So, you said you found this gruesome replica last night while you were walking down Ember Lane?" Carr looked at him expectantly.  Professor Lyons repeated his story, saying that he just "stumbled upon it" and was horrified by its' contents.  Officer Carr seemed to believe him.  Now Robin's involvement was cleared, and Clyde wouldn't be unhappy with her.

He figured he should go tell her the news, that the hand was fake, and that whoever was doing this just wanted to scare her.  She lived in a wealthy neighborhood called Redmont near where his parents lived.   It would be half an hour on the bus, and knowing Clyde's schedule, he would probably be somewhere in Collingwood now anyways.  

He thanked the officer, who seemed pretty pleased with himself for "defending the justice of our city," signed some witness documents under a false name, and walked out. The lights outside were blindingly bright, and he nearly stumbled into the street.  

Then he walked a couple of blocks to the bus station.  There was a couple sitting on a bench nearby, having a good-natured debate about something.  Bus 2 came quickly, however, so he got on, paid his fee, and sat down at the very front.  He had been awake since the early hours of the morning, and now felt like he was sleepwalking.  A couple other passengers boarded the bus, their faces lit up by the screens that were glued to their hands. It wasn't like it used to be, Professor Lyons thought, people staring blankly out of the window like a psychopath awaiting their death.

When the bus finally stopped at the last station, the sun was setting, and he knew he had to make use of the daylight he had left.  He got off at Redmont station, checked the map, and figured that Robin's house was roughly fourteen blocks northeast.  He took off down the shady road, with no sidewalk, under a canopy of Spanish moss.  The houses in this part of town had long paved driveways, that led up million dollar mansions with impeccably manicured lawns.  This was what he had grown up with, but he didn't feel any longing for the ivory walls and spotless furniture he wasn't allowed to touch when he was a child.

A quarter hour later, he had arrived at the address he had observed on Robin's file.  Tall cypress trees lined the walkway, matching him in height and width.  Tiny bright lights illuminated the path to the front door.  He noticed her car, a sky blue convertible parked in the driveway, and remembered how out of place it looked next to the rot and decay of Collingwood Heights. There was a space for another car, but it was vacant, so he assumed Clyde was out.    

Suddenly, he heard a high-pitched scream, and a loud splash.  His heart was pounding.  Robin!  He darted through the side of the house, using the shadows to his aid.  When he reached the backyard, he saw there was a little girl swimming in the circular pool.  She had chestnut brown  hair that swirled around her in the water.   Her skin was pearly white and her lips purple from the cold.  She was laughing so hard, that she could hardly slip the goggles over her eyes as she treaded water.  

Her scream had been out of adrenaline, not out of fear then.  Still, his pulse quickened.  The girl, she was undeniably familiar.  He couldn't recall a place where he would see children her age, but he definitely recognized her.  He thought back further, filtering out his memories until it hit him like a boomerang.

Eighteen years ago, he was ten, and every summer his parents sent him to go to summer camp in the woods four hours away. Camp Ridgecrest. She had been there too.  They had been closer than best friends, and then August inevitably ended.  He had loved her.  But she didn't go back to camp next summer.  Or any other summer.  

A vivid image flashed across his eyes.   All the campers gathered around the inflatable movie screen in the amphitheater, with their clothes that smelled permanently of smoke.  But she had grabbed his hand, and led him away to the Ancient Hill, where a thousand fireflies danced through the cool night sky.  She was the last person who he ever trusted, and he couldn't remember her name.

The girl in the pool was her.  Or there was a resemblance too strong to be coincidental.  He couldn't believe his eyes; she must be a phantom.  But he heard a male voice yelling for her to come inside, and he pressed himself against the side of the house.  When he looked back, there was a trail of tiny wet footprints.    


  1. I was wondering if you would like to plan out an interaction? Or would you rather just meet in passing. I have a few ideas for a full interaction if you're interested in that.

  2. Sorry, could you please reply? I don't want to miss the deadline y'know?
    I realize Hemson is a pretty tedious character to work with, so if you don't want a very involved interaction that's fine, but please reply.

  3. Hi, Hemson. Sorry for commenting so late, I just saw this. Anyways, I am really open to anything, so if you have any ideas, go right on ahead. I think it would be kind of boring if we just did a passing, but if it doesn't work for your narrative, then that's fine.

  4. Yaaay! I was so worried that you didn't like me! Thank you!!
    Okay, so I had an idea that someone who has been tailing Hemson has come to ask you for information about him. It could be something like the policeman from my previous post, Officer Jones, just asking out of cautiousness. Or it could be someone from his 'previous life' like a mobster or someone equally undesirable.
    It would be up to you if you want the Professor to help the person or tell Hemmy or simply turn the person away.
    This is all hypothetical of course, assuming you like this scenario!

  5. That sounds like it could be really great! It depends on whether you want to continue with the story line you're going for, or want to bring elements from your "previous life" to the present. I think it would be comical if Professor Lyons took on the job and there was a wild goose chase for Hemson that left Professor doubting his abilities, and gives us more insight into Hemson's life. We can really take it any direction.
    I don't think I will have time to post tonight, so go right ahead and I will post my response as soon as possible!