Chapter 2: Something's Wrong
The sun was starting to set below the golden hills of the town, a beautiful sunset causing many multicolored clouds to dapple the sky. Ian walked broodily, jamming his hands into his pockets and trying to think.
There was something wrong with this town… But what?
Everyone was too happy…
But how could he prove that it had something to do with the paranormal?
He knew that he had to give his brother time, but it was frustrating to not have Roderick up to his best. It was hard figuring things out by himself.
With all of this running through his mind, Ian failed to notice that someone, or rather, something, was following him.
Ian soon found himself in a park, with well kept shrubbery, nicely trimmed grass, and a path that curved around a few trees. With the coming darkness, a few lampposts flickered on. Ian continued to walk down the path, lost in his thoughts.
He stopped suddenly when a chill went up his spine. He whirled around.
There was nothing there.
It had almost felt like something was breathing down his neck…
And why did he suddenly have the feeling he was being watched?
He suddenly realized how idiotic it was to be in a possible paranormal town by himself when it was getting dark. Hastily, he turned around back the way he came, eager to get around people again. He skidded to a stop when he realized there was someone a few feet up ahead underneath one of the lampposts.
“Uh… Excuse me?” he said hesitantly.
He blinked, and then the person was gone.
CRAP CRAP CRAP.
He knew it. There were spirits here. There just had to be. But what kind? What was going on? He only knew about spirit parasites-not anything else! Should he call Joey? Should he call Roderick? Should he run?
“Iaaannnn…” a voice whispered in his ear, sending another chill up his spine. At this point, Ian’s instinct kicked in, and he took off running.
He had to get to Roderick-had to warn him that there was really something off with this town.
He jumped off the path and ran and hid behind a tree so he could catch his breath.
After a moment of silence, he peered out from behind the tree.
He about had a heart attack.
Coming towards him were maybe twenty silent dark figures like the one that he had seen under the lamppost.
He then got the feeling that something was behind him.
Not turning around.
But there’s a tree in front of you Ian. You have to turn around.
Ian held his breath, and then made the decision to see what was behind him so he could further assess his situation.
Slowly, he turned around…
Roderick was in a middle of a game of checkers with Jordyn.
She seemed a lot more pleasant than when they had last seen her. He felt happy that she was so happy. It was nice to be around positive people for a change.
“Ha ha! I win again!” he exclaimed, jumping some of her pieces. Jordyn laughed.
“I guess so!”
Roderick tried to not think about how long Ian had been gone.
He must have been really mad.
Roderick shook off the feeling and set up the board again.
“So do you like it here in Serenity Hill?” Jordyn asked.
“Actually, yeah. Maybe I’ll spend some time here. It’s not like I’ve been doing much else lately.” At this, Jordyn smiled.
“Well the community would love to have you!”
Roderick nodded, returning the smile.
Finally, the door started to open.
“Ian is back!” Jordyn exclaimed jubilantly, clapping her hands together.
“Hey-bro-I’m-I’m sorry about earlier…” Roderick stuttered, standing up. “I’m just…”
Ian then came out of the shadows and into the kitchen light.
There was something wrong with his face…
It had a huuuuge smile on it.
“Hello brother!” he said happily, throwing his arms around Roderick in a hug, squeezing him tight.
“Uh… Ian?” Roderick gasped.
“Oops! Don’t know my own strength!” he laughed, as Jordyn chimed in with him. Roderick stared at him is disbelief.
“Are you ok bro?” he asked.
“Oh I am simply splendid!” his older brother told him, his smile somehow growing even wider. “I really like this place. I think I will live here!”
“Oh what lovely news!” Jordyn exclaimed. “Would you care for a game of checkers?”
“That sounds simply splendid!”
Roderick stood there in the kitchen, mouth agape and eyes wide as his older brother took a seat at Jordyn’s table and set up the checkerboard.
There was something seriously wrong here…
Number one: Ian did not say things like ‘splendid.’
Number two: Ian hated hugs and pretty much a lot of physical contact from anyone.
Number three: Ian hated checkers, and much preferred chess.
He should have listened to Ian earlier…
“Hey uh… I’m going to make a quick phone call, so I’m going to step outside for a moment.” Roderick said with a nervous smile.
“All right brother.” Ian said happily. “We’ll be here!”
“Oh and by the way, you both are welcome to stay the night here.” Jordyn said amiably. “I have a futon and a lovely couch.”
“That sounds great Jordyn! I think we’ll take you up on that.”
Roderick shut the front door behind him as he mentally added that last bit to his ‘something is wrong with Ian’ list.
He most definitely would not sleep over at a single woman’s house, simply because he didn’t want anyone to think that anything happened.
Ian was very respectable that way.
Shakily, Roderick pulled up his contacts and clicked on Brian’s name.
“Brian! Where are you right now?”
“In Oregon doing some Haunted house gig for some lame ghost hunter people. Why?”
“I need you to come down and meet me in a town in Northern California called Serenity Hill. As. Soon. As. Possible.”
“What’s the rush?”
“There’s something wrong with Ian. And Jordyn.”
“Wait-that detective from Pinnacle Gulch?”
“So what’s wrong with them?”
Roderick took a deep breath, trying to calm his nerves.
“They are both very happy.”
“Like how happy? Like…”
“Imagine you with pizza. Now imagine that with Ian.”
“I’m on my way.”