The Veil – Part 29

Hello, my Freaky Darlings!

What have you been doing this weekend? Have you been watching the beginning of the Rugby World Cup?

For your reading pleasure, here’s the latest episode of The Veil.

Please bear in mind these episodes are published as I write them and have not been edited. If you’ve missed any of the previous chapters and would like to catch up, you can pop in here.

*

I was right back where I’d been two years ago. Yesterday I’d had a boyfriend who wanted to marry me and now he was dead, and Jack was once again turning my life into the nightmare I thought I’d escaped. It just goes to show, you can never escape your demons. No matter how far you think you’ve gone, they always seem to come back and bite you in the arse when you least expect it. Especially when that demon is Jack.

But this time around it wasn’t just my life and sanity hanging in the balance. This time around on the merry-go-round, I had Michael to worry about as well. And then there was Carol. Having survived two years with Jack – how much more could she possibly take? Could I help her? Did I even want to help her? Another question that nagged at my brainstem and made me feel like a terrible human being was, why was she still alive? Jack was usually in such a rush to dispatch his victims. What was so different about Carol? Was she stronger than I gave her credit for or was there something else going on?

I looked at Michael, who in turn stared at me. He stared at me as though I were a complete stranger.

“What?” I asked him with a shrug.

“Who are you?”

“Michael, sit down.” I patted the seat on the couch next to me.

“I … I don’t belong here. I don’t know what to do with this,” he said as he gestured towards Jack and a screaming Carol. “I’m not like you, I can’t shut that out.”

“Nobody belongs here, and I’m not shutting anything out or being cold and insensitive to what she’s going through, but I’m also not going to panic and give Jack what he wants.”

Michael visibly deflated. He crumpled into himself as he walked towards me and took the seat next to me.

“What does he want?” he asked in a small voice. It was the voice of a scared little boy, not of a self-assured psychiatrist. Being faced with Jack would do that to the most stable person.

“Good question. It varies from day to day but in general, he wants you to scream.”

“Scream?”

“Yes, that’s part of it, and the other is he wants you to be mind-numbingly afraid. The more scared you are, the happier he is.”

“I can’t be here. I can’t do this. None of this is possible.” He hyperventilated. “I’m not crazy. This simply has to be a nightmare. It just isn’t possible.”

“Carol and I aren’t crazy either. This isn’t a nightmare. And you’re right, this shouldn’t be possible, but it is happening, and you’re stuck here until Jack gets bored. So you have a choice, you can either freak-out, or you can help me figure a way out.”

Carol’s screaming thankfully stopped. The silence was followed by a hard smacking sound. I hated admitting it, but Carol was tough. Anybody else would have begged for it to end by now. I wondered if she was aware that no matter what she did, she would always be Jack’s plaything. That we were all Jack’s playthings.

*

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