I woke up still in my office chair; I stretched, picked up my cup and took a drink of my coffee. Realising straight away that it had been there all night and was stone cold. Yuck.
“Adam, good you’re awake. You may want to see this.” Jimmy said walking in to my office. I nodded and followed him to the main room. We walked in and the first thing I saw was Raven standing in front of two A1 sized boards, one had a map with markings all over it and the other looked somewhat like a timeline. She reached down to pick up her drink and then sighed at the realisation that it was empty. With a flick of her wrist the cup was full of coffee once again.
“That is such a cool trick.” Jenkins said with a smile on his face. “Can you magic me up a cup of coffee?” He asked her and I rolled my eyes. Raven didn’t comment but a cup appeared in Jenkins’s hand. He took a sip and his eyes widened. “How did you know I like lemon in my coffee?” He asked bewildered.
“Because, I am amazing.” Raven said sarcastically causing him to laugh.
“Raven, what’s with the boards?” I asked her.
“Well, this one is all of Damon’s property that I can remember. And this is a timetable of events, I’m trying to figure out how much he’s erased.” She explained. I noticed that she looked even more tired than yesterday. ”Raven, did you stay here all night doing this?” I asked her.
“If I say yes will you then lecture me on how I need rest etcetera even though we both know I won’t listen and will more than likely do it again?” She asked and Jenkins laughed.
“She’s got you down to the mark.” He said. Alexander walked over to where she was stood and studied the boards.
“You’ve missed out some years.” He said to her.
“What do you mean?” She asked confused.
“How old are you?” He asked.
“But you wrote here that you were born in 1989.”
“I was.” She said, her lack of sleep stopping her from catching on as fast as she would usually. “Wait, that doesn’t make sense, that would make me 26.”
“So Damon changed your memory of your age?” James asked.
“But what reason could there be, making me think that I’m nine years younger than I actually am?” Raven questioned.
“I don’t know, but we sure as hell need to find out. Let’s go through some of the events that you remember and see if it triggers any memories.” I suggested and she nodded in agreement.
“Aged 0-6 holds nothing of importance that will help us. Age six is when your family were attacked by Damon, aged seven was-“ Alexander paused for a moment before he continued. “Aged seven was the first time you met Adam?” He asked and looked to Raven, and then me. “If only you remembered me Adam.” She had said when she thought I was sleeping. I looked at her and she realised her mistake. She sighed.
“I’m surprised you haven’t figured it out yet.” She said to me. “You knew me as Jane back then.” She told me and I couldn’t believe my ears.
“Jane?” I asked and she nodded. “That makes sense, you always liked to change your name, was never happy with the one you had.” I said. I couldn’t detect the expression on her face but she seemed worried about my reaction. I went to her and pulled her in to my arms. I could sense the confusion around us but I didn’t care. She needed to know that I still cared for her. I was lost for words so Raven took over.
“Adam looked after me was I was seven, before most of you worked here. Everything was fine at first, but I started to notice the rise in demon attacks heading this way, and I didn’t want more people to be hurt because of me. I was also becoming a distraction. Adam couldn’t look after me and run this place at the same time. So I left.” She explained. I know she didn’t mean it to but hearing her explanation of why she left made me feel guilty, it was my fault she left. I had noticed that demon attacks decreased after she left but I thought it was because either they were retreating or because we were cutting down their numbers. I didn’t realise they were after her.
“You didn’t have to leave.” I told her.
“Yes I did.”
“I would have protected you.” I said.
“But at what cost?” I didn’t know how to answer.
“Whatever the cost.” I stated but this only helped to prove her point. I would have sacrificed myself to save her and she knew it. “Where did you go?” I asked.
“Maybe we shouldn’t get in to that.” She replied.
“That bad huh?” I asked, knowing that it must’ve been, otherwise she would’ve told me. I wished I had known her thought process at the time. If I had, I could’ve made things better, stopped her from leaving, and then she wouldn’t have been put through so much pain. I wished that I could turn back the clock, but as I can’t, I will just have to make it up to her, no matter what.
“What else did you find out?” James asked to change the subject.
“Well some of the areas in my life seem too random to be erased by Damon, they seem too meaningless.” Raven said.
“Maybe they are repressed memories?” Jonathan suggested.
“Possibly, but I’m not sure. I’ve never really been faced by anything that I couldn’t handle remembering.” Raven said.
“I don’t doubt.” Alexander said, I wasn’t entirely sure what he meant by that.
We spent the next few hours combing through everything that Raven could remember. Which, as you could imagine led to a fair few arguments. Between them, Clara and Alexander picked up on every little bit of information that Raven didn’t want to share. But she didn’t give in, nor did she cave to the constant questions and accusations. When it was getting late, and we were still no closer to finding the answers, everyone was exhausted so I dismissed them. There was no point in continuing on through the night, everyone was getting agitated and it would only lead to more arguments.
When everyone was gone, I returned to the main conference room with a fresh cup of coffee to find Raven, standing there staring at the two boards.
“That won’t help you remember; you know that, don’t you?” I asked.
“I have to try, I can’t just go home and rest like you want me to. I have to figure this out; I have to make this right.” She said. I stood beside her and looked at the boards.
“Well then at least let me help you.” I said to her. We ran every location that she had remembered through our data base, but as there were so many it was going to take a while. I looked to Raven and studied her. I could tell she was tired and yet she refused to sleep, she was strong and determined, and still believed she was alone.
“I know what you’re going to say. I can sense your thought process.” She said to me.
“Couldn’t have changed a thing even if you knew the situation.” She said, interrupting me. “You shouldn’t feel guilt for anything that has happened, I did what I thought was best with the hand I was dealt. I’m sorry if my decision hurt you, but the alternative would’ve done more damage.” She explained.
“You thought I’d be killed?” I asked.
“I knew you’d be killed. I had a vision, just like I did before Damon attacked my family. I figured leaving would prevent your death, and I was right.” She said. Silence fell between us; I didn’t know what to say. “Did you forget to tell me something Adam?” She asked me, changing the subject. It took me a while to catch on.
“Yes, there is an event tomorrow in honour of Jonathan’s daughter.” I told her.
“No, Sierra. She’s been missing since she was young, it’s her birthday tomorrow. We hold this event every year; all staff are expected to attend and to be on high alert.” I told her.
“Then maybe I should get some rest. See you tomorrow Adam.” She said and then disappeared out of sight.