Nine: Without You
CHAPTER NINE: WITHOUT YOU
After several hours away from the house, Darren finally drove her back home, from the lack of the car still being in the driveway, it would seem that Joesph and Karen had gone out again. In its place was Jacob's Firebird, both Kelley and Darren went out to meet him, he was sitting in his driver seat, reading a book he brought with him. He looked up and saw Kelley, then his eyes shifted over to Darren. “Darren” he said in a mellow voice.
“Jacob” he returned the tone.
“What's up?” Kelley asked Jacob.
“Have you got plans?” he asked still looking at Darren.
“No, Darren was just dropping me off.”
“I'll leave you two. Be careful Kelley.” Darren said, and then returned to his van, started the engine and drove off down the driveway.
“What was that about?” Kelley asked.
“We don't get along, you know that” Jacob replied. His voice was quiet, It was easy for Kelley to tell that he didn't want to talk about it. “Have you eaten?” he asked, his voice was back to its normal self.
“Good, because I haven't either” Jacob then got out of his car and walked over to the passenger side, opened the door and pulled out a large red cooler. Together they walked behind the house to the yard (more of a field) between the house and the forest, Jacob set the cooler down, opened the lid and pulled out a blanket and laid it on the grass. Inside the cooler were cut up pieces of watermelon, honeydew melon, bread, jam, and sliced meats, all of them were put into their own little containers. Along with the food there were also four cans of soda, Jacob and Kelley neatly placed each container on the blanket, each took a soda and then sat down themselves. Kelley picked up a piece of sliced ham and bit into it while Jacob was busy digging into the squares of watermelon. “So what were you and Darren doing anyway?” he asked.
“Darren and I went down to the library to research into what we are dealing with and how we might be able to stop it.”
“Come up with anything?” He seemed to be in a better mood now, not quite back to normal sounding Jacob, but at least he wasn't as uptight.
“Such as?” He now took a bite of the honeydew melon.
“Well, I am pretty sure that Jane and the little girl are one of the same entity, I am just not sure how, or even how it works.”
“Makes sense, I guess, not that any of this whole thing makes any sense at all. If that happened to be true, it might be a split upon death”. Kelley looked extremely confused, he smiled and then continued, “It’s when you die, and you are ready to leave this world behind, and go on, too... whatever it is that is beyond this life. Though, there is a very strong part of you that wants to stay for one reason or another, it is normally very personal to that person. It is said that a soul that is not fully intact can't move on. So if Jane had these two parts of her in her soul, it may have actually split her soul in half. I know I am mostly just pulling this out of my ass, but in a world where weapons won't hurt you and you can walk through walls, makes about as much sense as anything else. Anyway, you were saying about your theories.”
“Okay, so just another piece of the puzzle put together I guess. From what we understand, ghosts have to be attached to something, I thought, if Jane and the little girl are connected, then the ribbon that the little girl wears might be it, since Jane no longer has it, in the only time I have seen her anyway.”
“Okay, valid point, but there is still something bothering me.”
“What is it?”
“Why stay? I mean, yes, what they did to her was horrible, but she got her revenge didn't she? Why stay?” It was funny too Kelley, for people who don't get along very well, they sure did tend to think alike.
“Maybe she can't leave?”
“What do you mean by can't leave?”
“Well, what if staying or her soul splitting or whatever it's caused made it so she could no longer cross over.”
“It's a better than any theory then I have.”
“There is still a lot to the Jane Worthright story that I don't know, but I am hoping that the diary can fill in the rest of the missing blanks.” Kelley then looked at him in a soulful but less serious way and asked “Why did you do this?”
“Do what?” now he was confused.
“This” and she used her hand to point to the picnic that he had set out for her.
“Oh, this” to her, it sounded as though he was trying to sound modest when he said that. “I did this because of what you have went through, what you're still going through Kelley. I can only do so much...” his voice got quiet. “It's not enough...”
“What do you mean it's not enough?”
“My attempt at trying to make you feel better, it's not enough. It's going to take a lot more than a few sandwiches to fix the damage that was caused by this house.”
“You're trying, that has to count for something.”
“Points for effort doesn't really do anyone much good.” He was quiet for a couple of seconds, it wasn't hard for Kelley to figure out this really wasn't what he wanted to talk about. If he wasn't going to say it, then she decided she'd take the risk and ask him, with everything else that had been going on, there couldn't be room for anything else.
“You can say it you know.”
“Whatever is eating away at you, I know that look, I've seen in the mirror a million times, something that is right below the surface and wants to come up. You just don't know what other people are going to think of it, I'm just telling you I'm here, for whatever it is.” She then placed her hand on his, hoping this would be enough for him to open up to her.
“Remember when you asked me why me and Darren, don't get along?” She nodded her head yes, thinking this was a random subject change. “Would you like to know?” She paused for a slight second before nodding her head yes. “It would have been about three years ago now, me and Darren were close, best friends I guess you could call us. He was dating my little sister, Amanda, she was a year younger than I was, and Darren is the same age as me, I didn't really have a problem with it, they seemed to make each other happy and no harm, no foul”.
“I thought you were an only child, ” she said as she went to go sit next to him.
Jacob continued. “They had, gone to a friend's house, it was a party, one of the ones you'd have out on the farmer's land, lots of space, no one to bother you, you know about those high school things. I wasn't fond of the idea, but I couldn't look her in the eye and say that I had done those kinds of things at eighteen, so I said nothing to our parents and they went out. A few hours later we had gotten a call from the police, there had been an accident. I guess they had gotten so drunk that they thought it'd be a good idea to climb up to the top of the old windmill that was in the field, she was ahead of him, and towards the top of the windmill the ladder couldn't take the weight and a section of it gave way. She fell and broke her neck, died instantly, the section of the ladder Darren was on held up, and he was unharmed. I don't hate him, it was just as much of my fault that she went there as it was his, he didn't mean for this to happen, but it did, and she's gone. I don't hate him, but I can't forgive him either”. His eyes had begun to get watery.
There was a mix of horror and sadness in Kelley's face as she heard Jacob's story “that's horrible.”
“Do you understand? I have already lost her, no matter what it takes, I won't lose you too. I did this because after all you have been though, I thought someone should do something nice for you, even if it's all I can do.” A weird and as random as that sounded at first, it suddenly made a lot more sense to Kelley.
“Jacob” Kelley's voice was serious and he looked at her. “What I am going through, I can't explain it, not fully, and I don't think that I will ever be able to, but I know what it feels like. It feels like I am down an impossibly long and very dark tunnel, so dark that there is no end that I can see. What you have done for me Jacob, you have given me hope, a light in the tunnel, I cannot yet see the end, and the light that you are reminds me that this tunnel will not go on forever. That it has an end.” Jacob then gave her a soulful look.
“Anyone could have done that for you.”
“But they didn't, you did.”
“My point is I am nothing special.”
“Mine is that this darkness is not over, that tunnel is still dark, and in that darkness is evil, an evil that neither you or I or Darren or Joseph or anyone else can understand, and I can't face the dark without you”. This was when she closed her eyes moved forward and kissed him. He was slightly hesitant at first, but then gently took the back of her head with his hand. He would have never admitted it, but he wanted her, long before this, but was never willing to risk his friendship with her to have it. Fate as it would seem had made these plans for them whether he was willing to or not. Kelley then began to move away slowly and Jacob released her head, for the first time in a long time, there was a smile upon her face, and his as well. “I don't need something fancy and nice done for me, I need someone I can count on to be there, someone I can trust.” They were both unaware that the clouds above them had gotten dark, very dark as though it was about to storm.
When suddenly Jacob was thrown into the air and back about ten or so feet, landing on his left arm. Kelley jumped up to attend to him when a figure made entirely of black smoke appeared between them, it was the figure of a man in a cloak wearing a mask with a short beak... Raven Face... Edison. He turned to face Jacob and then growled loudly as if he were shouting “She's Mine!”
“Fuck you!” Kelley screamed at him, there was not fear in her eyes for him this time, it was anger. Edison swiftly turned around to face her now. “I am not scared of you!” Edison then began to get taller and the figure made of smoke turned into a wall in the middle of the field made entirely of dark murky water. A dark and murky water that enclosed itself around Kelley, cutting off all air passages. Horror in her eyes and her heart now, the only thought she could manage in her head was that of the crash, of her parents, of her, drowning. The wall of water, then fell over her and held her like it was in a container, Kelley kept trying to swim to the surface, for air. But a strong force was keeping her under, Jacob desperately tried to help her, but it was like a force, the same one that had Kelley trapped was keeping him pinned to the ground. Kelley was running out of air, and the water, so dark, so dark, no light to be seen, she could feel herself getting light headed, she couldn't hold on much longer.
Right then for no apparent reason the wall of water collapsed and flooded every small hole in the area, and almost right away, the sky cleared back up, Jacob was freed and rushed over to find Kelley lying on the ground. Unsure of what to do he just said “come on Kelley, wake up” slightly shaking her as he did so. She began to cough up the water, she was okay. She looked up at him, then over to just behind the house, over to where Joseph was standing. His arms just dropped to his sides and looked to the spot where Edison had made the wall of water and where Kelley and Jacob now stood. Joseph in that moment didn't look like a man who could not believe what he had just seen, but more of a man who had just unwilling accepted what he had just seen.
Kelley had taken a few steps towards him before asking him “Joseph?”
He replied almost the same way that Jacob had, “they're real...” only his was more of an uncertain whisper. This made Kelley feel very uneasy “I thought it was a dream, nothing more.”
“Joseph what are you talking about?” Kelley was startled, not only by what Edison had just done, but it seemed to her that Joseph knew about the spirits.
He looked right at her “The man with the horns on his head.”
“The King of Horns,” to her eyes, it looked as though Jacob had been hurt when he hit the ground, it was best to get him inside to see how bad it was. The look on his face said that he was not worried about himself, he was looking just beyond Kelley and Joseph. Every single one of the windows on that side of the house was covered in a thick frost, they weren't sure who had made the windows freeze, but one thing was certain. Kelley's fear was met, Edison was getting stronger, and more violent. She didn't even know what had been able to stop him this time, but she had seen that kind of frost on the windows before, the night she and Darren used the Ouija board.