“But Agnes, the events to the Jordon Gibson abduction are virtually identical to what happened twenty-six years ago.” Carol rubbed her head as they sat having tea in the main room of the hotel. “Christ that’s sore. I got it from passing out and hitting myself on Cider?”
Agnes adjusted her straw wrapped purple version of a smaller cartwheeled hat. Her dress and top watched in paler shades of stripped fuchsia and a rosy pink. “Yup, and again when you hit the ground. I’ve had many people either fall asleep or pass out during a séance, didn’t expect you to be one,” Agnes lied with a smile as she sipped at her tea. “That they are, it happens to involve the Shelbourne vortex, there are times when it is reported that people drive along Shelbourne and Hillside and they say they are suddenly on a dirt road. A minute later they are back in the present. But occasionally the reverse can happen, and time jumps ahead.”
“Then tell me how you know of Francis Rattenbury?”
“He says he came through the vortex into my dreams.”
“Exactly. So, if a ghost from the past can do this, why not one from the future?”
Carol thought a moment. Wouldn’t I have a greater lump in the front of my head? “So, are you saying this will happen again in another twenty-six years and again after that?”
Agnes nodded her head in affirmation. “Nice tea, have I said that before, as well?”
Carol didn’t take the bait. “Are you telling me that someone from the future returns to take a boy every twenty-six years or so?”
“Check the records on unsolved cases and let me know.”
“So how do I stop this? I have no clues to his disappearance and obviously won’t if he goes back into the vortex?”
“It is you that will solve this.”
“Me when? Not twenty-six years from now?” I thought the old gal was of sound mind and body. I was sadly mistaken.
“Ah, you are very astute.”
She rubbed at her head. “Man, that hurts, swear someone whacked me in the skull. Wait, if I do that, how can I know about this now? I’m getting more and more confused.”
“We go to the vortex tonight. I get the feeling that person that was after me is getting closer to discovering my presence. Time is of the essence. You will need to take pictures with your cell phone. The rest I can’t tell you about. The photos will capture what I think I need to know in order to save his life.”
Carol looked at her strangely. “Agnes, why we?”
“We as in you, me and Cider.” Agnes hesitated for a moment. “Again, you need to enter the vortex as well as myself. As for me, I’ve lived a full life, but have never experienced something like this. Around this time of the year before the All Hallows Eve it is very powerful. I also want to see what Cider experiences. She can see and experience things beyond our realm and possibly communicate with those we need to talk to. Tonight, will be on the eve of similar galactic alignments like during the rock concert in California with Venus, Mercury and the Sun all in the Sagittarius quadrant, while the moon is on the cusp of Libra-Scorpio. Very powerful alignments, I also found out, for non-relevant time experiences or déjà vu encounters. Or so I’m told and maybe, just maybe, help find Nathan.”
Carol shook her head. The old gal talked to that crystal skull like she was a living creature.
“You forget I can pick up thoughts and she, Cider, is living to me.”
“And you forget I’m a cop and I know when you are lying to me.” Agnes remained stone faced as she sipped her after-dinner scotch.
“You’re up to something, I know it.” I thought I could trust her, but after that séance I’m not so sure.
Agnes yawned. “I’m quite tired, will you help me up so I can retire to my room?”
“Oh, you’re such a bag. Okay I’ll do it, I’ll take you there, but I’m not letting you out of my sight.”
“Don’t worry, I won’t try anything funny.”
“That is exactly what I’m worried about.” Carol rubbed the back of her head. Need another bloody Aspirin, that’s what I need.
* * *
It was nearly two a.m. when Carol drove her car to the intersection of Shelbourne and Hillside.
Agnes sat all too quietly beside her.
“Tell me again why you’ve brought Cider with us?” Carol asked quietly as they sat with the car idling.
“I want to know what she senses or picks up while we’re here. Never had a chance to do this before. Seeing inside Cider is like looking into another dimension. So, I reckon we take the other dimension to Cider and see what she sees here. I’m excited, aren’t you?”
“Not really, nervous actually. Don’t know why, just get this sense things
are going to go horribly wrong.”
“That’s probably from being in an area where time is in flux. I’m getting that same sense. Has to do with the ley lines intersecting and the magnetic flow. When several lines cross or come together it creates a quiet or null zone. All the better to pick up vibrational energies and perhaps sense what happened to Nathan. My mind and Cider’s are being blocked trying to locate him and again at the hanging scene at the Empress. I need to go around that somehow.” She hesitated and closed her eyes a moment. “I’m beginning to sense the vortex is opening. Let’s get out and start walking down the street.”
“Vibrational energies, null zones. The only vibrational sense I’m beginning to get is I’ve got to go to the washroom. How would you know what the vortex opening would feel like if you’ve never done this before?”
Agnes held Cider in her elderly arms. The old gal was surprisingly stronger than she looked. Carol had begun to realize all her feeling weak, fainting spells and ‘I need a rest break,’ were simply ways of getting out of explaining things. My head still throbs, but the lump is going down. I swear I was clocked. But there was only one person in the room. Agnes? She has no problem holding up the heavy skull.
“I am not letting you out of my sight. I’m starting to think you hit me with something and now you’ve led me here for another reason. Didn’t you tell me that time is like a straight line, except that every once in a while it curves back on itself?”
“Yes, like a loop and sometimes you get stuck in this loop over and over again, until something is done to end it. Then when it is corrected all moves forward again. Why? Is this what you are sensing? That you’ve been here before?”
Carol frowned as the area began to shimmer. “Yes, I’ve dreamt this before, or feel like this has happened to me in the past, er future, er in some cosmic twisted reality. Maybe when I met
Francis Rattenbury? And I am beginning to think you walloped me in back of the head.”
Agnes laughed. “You are most perceptive. You are after all a detective. Ah, what is that?”
Carol looked up into the windows of the Parkwood Place care facility. She caught an older woman waving at them.
“Who is that?” Carol grabbed her phone to take a picture and zoomed in. “Who the hell is that and why is she waving at me? Is this some kind of vision?” She closed her eyes and blinked as everything began to spin away and the sidewalks and asphalt disappeared. The woman in the window rose and put on her large brimmed red cartwheel hat. “Agnes? How are you up there? What in the …”
“Thanks for bringing me here. You’ll thank me someday.”
“What?” Carol snapped the picture and glanced over to look at Agnes, who wasn’t there. “Agnes?”
She stood on the street by herself. Carol glanced up at the window. No one was there. Quickly everything shifted back to normal and a car drove by on the normal looking street honking at her for standing nearly in the middle of it.
“Agnes?” Carol rushed back to her car as beneath her feet pavement reappeared. “Agnes!” She shouted.
Nothing responded, only the cool Victoria air as Carol opened the cars door and jumped inside. Carol slammed her hand down on the steering wheel. She rubbed at the back of her head. It was her that hit me, probably drugged me. Crap! Why do I know I just got set up? I trusted her.