Delilah's Shadow

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Chapter 38

Hummingbird, dominated by the mind of the woman of the woods, had changed. While Hummingbird hid away from the world, was invisible to all the minds around her. The other personalities took that opportunity and made themselves visible, and real, to those in the same world Hummingbird hid from. Anyone they came upon saw them, no longer as the young teen Hummingbird, but as distinct individuals, each became visible and apparently real. They appeared to be a motley group, walking along the sidewalk. Melissa, Perry, side by side, just behind them, the old woman of the woods, who led the group, and trailing behind the three was the little girl Hummingbird once was. An innocent little girl, who loved all the animals of her mountain home, her favorite of course, was her mountain lion, Soft. They crossed the road that circled the asylum walking on the sidewalk opposite the side of the street from the perimeter wall. The old woman of the woods wanted to get a good look at the compound before she formulated a plan. She knew Delilah was in there, and she had to kill her before she became herself again and destroyed her utterly from the mind of her little Hummingbird. For in little Hummingbird, the woman of the woods had the means to live on forever. Both children were at odds with their own minds and this was her only opportunity for survival and to seize the power of her little girl, from within. If either regained themselves at all, she might cease to exist.

At the back of the perimeter, was an opening that was for delivery vehicles. There were armed soldiers there. Six in all. A soldier spotted the group and called to the other soldiers. All raised their weapons, save for one, who started talking on a radio.

“You are going to have to move along,” The lead soldier said to the group, “This area is off-limits,” The soldier lowered his weapon, as did the soldiers behind him, perceiving the civilians as a nonthreat, “Sir, you and your family are going to have to go back to the main road, I suggest you go home.” The soldier was not alarmed by the sight of the group, that to him, looked like a family out for an evening walk. There was a community of homes, mere blocks away. The asylum was not in an isolated area. It was a centerpiece to the city. The woman of the woods slinked to the rear of the group and Perry stepped forward.

“What’s with all the hardware?” Perry asked. They were all aware of what the soldier thought of them and played the part of a family out for an evening walk. Their appearance changed subtly, going unnoticed in the dark evening, to be exactly what the soldiers thought they were. To the soldiers they were a young couple with a small child and an old woman. The soldiers relaxed as the lead soldier stepped out into the street, stopping at the midway spot.

“We have a guest from the pentagon visiting and we are, uh, borrowing the building for a short time, no big deal, just passing through really,” The soldier told Perry, “You know how senators are, I probably shouldn’t have told you that.” Perry smiled knowing it was a lie, but put on a surprised, excited face.

“Our State Senator?” He asked looking back at Melissa, then back to the soldier, “Did you hear that honey?” Melissa walked up taking Perry’s hand.

“How exciting!” Melissa said, cozying up to Perry. The soldier smiled at their excitement, then turned back to the other five soldiers’ then raising his weapon and shot each in a quick succession with a dart that dropped them to the ground. The woman of the woods walked between Perry and Melissa, shoving them apart, then up behind the lead soldier who shot his cohort’s and slit his throat with her paring knife.

“Dat be nuff talking, one snake ta nudder,” she said continuing across the street and through the gate, “Y’all full a lies.” Melissa giggled then looked at Perry. The little girl followed the woman of the woods between Perry and Melissa.

“Shall we?” Perry motioned for Melissa to go first. She curtsied and nodded.

“Why thank you, sir.” Melissa entered the gate just behind the little girl. Perry followed. Inside the gate, was lit up so brightly the starry sky was no longer visible. The woman of the woods held her hand up to her brow to block the light, searching the building for a door.

“Over there.” Perry pointed to a set of double doors.

“There’s people just inside the door. They’re getting ready to come out here to check on them.” Melissa pointed at the soldier who had the radio. The woman of the woods walked to the door.

“Den dey get dere’s too.” She said, stopping just outside the double doors. It was an exit only door with no handles on the outside. The woman of the woods crouched down to little Hummingbird, “We do same as dem dere,” She nodded back to the soldiers that littered the road, “Same same, ya heya?” Little Hummingbird nodded her ascent. Inside the building, there were two soldiers walking slowly to the door, pausing every few steps, arguing with each other.

“We should radio for team three to join us and pull back to the rec room.” Specialist Davies told her fellow soldier, Private Franks.

“They said never mind, it was just a civilian family going by, let’s just go look and see if we need to relieve Harper and Jensen,” Franks said, “You can just stick your head out, if you want, and if it ain’t on the up and up, we’ll turn right around and follow protocol.” They continued to the door and stopped. Private Franks shrugged to Specialist Davies, urging her to open the door. Specialist Davies pushed the crossbar to open the door with her knee, raising her weapon to clear her way. The door swung open and stopped as if someone held it open for her from the outside. Specialist Davies spun on Private Franks and fired, hitting him in the throat. He dropped to the floor like a bag of dirt. The woman of the woods walked in with her paring knife behind Specialist Davies ready to slit her throat. Perry grabbed the woman of the wood’s wrist, stopping her.

“This one belongs to me.” Perry said and pried the knife from her hand.

The world fell away and Specialist Davies was at home in her apartment. She was in bed, just waking up. The shower was running, making her smile. Jeff had finally spent the night. She rolled over grabbing up a pillow and an armful of sheets and blanket, closing her eyes. The doorbell rang. She groaned and snuggled with her blanket tighter. The doorbell rang again. She rolled over and sat on the edge of the bed, glancing at the clock. It was only eight in the morning. The doorbell rang again.

“I’m coming!” She stood up and stretched.

“Babe?” Jeff yelled from the shower, “You say something?”

“No,” She yelled back. The doorbell rang again. She growled and stomped to the front door. She opened the door, “What!” Perry grabbed her by the throat with one hand and stuck a gun in her face with the other. He shoved her back against the wall opposite to the front door. Perry shut the door behind him with his foot. Specialist Davies screamed in fright and surprise.

“Shhh,” Perry ordered, “I’ll fucking kill you right now!” he pushed the gun against her cheek hard. She recoiled away from him, bringing her hands up to protect herself.

“What do you want?” she asked, scared for her life.

“Babe? Is everything ok?” Jeff called from the bathroom. Perry perked up, looking to where the voice came from then back down at Specialist Davies. A smile spread across his face as he stared into her eyes.

“No!” She shouted and began to struggle. Perry was too strong for her. He dragged her by her throat to the bathroom and kicked the door in. Jeff was still in the shower, he shouted, startled by the noise of the door flying open. Specialist Davies fought with all her might, but was as helpless as a child, being dragged by a parent. The shower curtain flung open and the naked Jeff quickly assessed the situation and lunged at Perry. He had Specialist Davies by the throat, up against the sink counter, her back pressed against the mirror, her feet well off the ground. Perry shot Jeff in the shoulder, the force of which, sent him back into the shower, bouncing off the wall, and then down to the shower floor grabbing his shoulder. Specialist Davies screamed. Perry looked at Specialist Davies sideways, cocking his head with a crooked smile.

“You want him to live?” he asked.

“Yes!” She shouted, struggling against Perry’s strong grip on her throat, her eyes on Jeff the whole time, “Yes!” She started to cry.

“What are you willing to do?” Perry pulled her from the counter and held her close to his face.

“Anything!” She whimpered. Perry put his mouth to her ear.

“Let’s play a game.” He whispered.

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