The Veil – Part 24

Hello, my Freaky Darlings!

How are you doing? It’s a rather chilly morning in South Africa. I write this snuggled up under the covers and with a certain black cat curled up on my lap. He’s not too impressed that I keep moving my hands to type.

If you’ve missed any of the previous episodes of The Veil and would like to catch up, you can find them here.

Without any further ado, here’s the latest part for your reading pleasure.

*

The mist cleared when Michael arrived at the entrance to Crystal Springs. The guard on duty thrust a clipboard through the window. He was instructed to fill it out and then drive through to reception to check-in.

“I’m not checking in,” Michael said through the knot of nerves in his throat. “I’m going to number two.”

“Number two?” The guard asked with a frown.

“Yes, number two. Is there a problem with that?”

“No sir,” the guard said, looking over his shoulder at another guard sitting in the guardhouse. “Are you expected?”

“Yes.” He didn’t think explaining the situation to them would do him any good. All that would happen was that valuable time would be wasted. Time Sarah and Byron didn’t have. After a short, loud, interaction in what sounded like Zulu, the boom was lifted, and the guard gestured towards the left.

It was a quick drive to Sarah’s cabin. It barely took him a minute from the gate. He recognised Sarah’s new car, A Citroen C2 and Carol’s blue Ford parked next to it. There wasn’t any room for him to park, so he stopped behind them, parking both cars in. There was barely room on the narrow road for another vehicle to drive past. He would probably get a fine or towed, but he didn’t have a choice.

The sun filtered through the pine trees as he climbed out of his car. Stretching after the long drive, he locked his door using his remote and looked around to see if anybody was around. Maybe somebody had seen Carol arrive, or had seen them leave together. But the place seemed to be deserted.

He could see a few other cars parked in front of the other cabins that lined the mountainside, facing the valley below, but not a soul stirred. It was too quiet. Not even the monkeys chattered, and the birds were silent.

Swallowing the lump in his throat, he made his way towards the cabin. As he took a step on the wooden stairs that led onto the deck, he noticed something lying in the shrubs. Thinking it might belong to Sarah, he ran through the long, wild, grass – some of it waist high – and climbed over a rock.

There was no way he should have been able to see it from where he originally stood, at the foot of the stairs. The gun was nestled between a rock and tall grass. Picking it up, it was ice cold to the touch.

He didn’t know enough about guns to be able to determine what make it was, but he knew that it was a revolver. Having a firearm might come in handy. Any protection was better than none. Putting the weapon in his pocket, barrel first, he picked his way through the shrubs and long grass, back to the cabin.

The wooden stairs were wet and slippery. The loafers he’d worn to the office were not made for running in long grass or on slippery stairs.

The moment he set foot on the deck, it was as though someone had thrown a black curtain over the sun. The only light to guide him to the door was the outside light that shone over the sliding door. His skin crawled, and the hair on the back of his neck stood on end as he reached for the door handle and slid it open. A twisted, pain-filled scream erupted as he stepped inside.

*

So … what did you think? Do you want me to continue?

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