I looked down at the boy by my side. His hair once a golden colour was now a dirty blond and his bouncy curls were all matted. He held his right arm in his left hand. It was broken and I knew it was very painful for him. He didn’t once whimper or scream or moan in pain. He was very brave.
“Kyo?” I said, quietly.
He looked up at me, his green eyes holding so much intelligence. I saw a flicker of pain cross his pale and dirty face.
“Yes, Father?” he replied, his voice shaking slightly. It was cold outside I knew that but I didn’t think that was the reason his voice shook. We were in one of the coldest and rainiest places in the USA. Trust that man to pick here to live. All I could see as I walked down to his house was trees and more trees. But it kept him hidden and I hoped it kept us safe too.
“We’re going to be okay,” I told him. I kept my own voice strong and my thoughts positive. “We’ll be safe from now on.”
Kyo nodded. But I could sense the doubt inside him. It would be a long time before that doubt evaporated. Poor child. Everything he knows and trusts has been violently turned upside down. Everyone he loves is either against him or dead.
“She’s in a safe place now, isn’t she?” he asked me though not looking at me. “I mean, she isn’t hurting now?”
“Yes, son, she is.”
I woke with a start, tears streaming down my cheeks.
This woman, who I had never met before, caused me so much pain it was unbearable. I felt as if a hole had opened up in my chest and it couldn’t be healed because she was gone. I hugged my knees to my chest and cried hard. I tried to tell myself it was just a dream, nothing more, but the pain was so real. It consumed me just like my anger had last night. I couldn’t get a hold of myself. I was grieving for some woman I didn’t know.
But Zachariah knew her. She was his wife, the mother of his son. And someone had killed her. To think of his wife dead sent another tidal wave of pain crashing down on me. More tears flooded my eyes and spilled down my face. How could I grieve for her? I didn’t know her. I hadn’t spoken to her, spent anytime with her.
Charlie’s voice, sounding rough and tired, brought me back to reality. I hastily wiped my hand across my eyes to erase the tears and only succeeded in causing mores. My eyes were sore as I had just realised. Realising my eyes were sore alerted me to the other after effects of visions.
“What?” I called back down feebly. I lay back down in bed, hoping to actually sleep this time. My brain was pounding against my skull but that could be from crying as well.
“Why is there a broken vase on the kitchen floor?”
An image of Edward lifting me onto the kitchen worktops and the vase crashing to the floor. I laughed and my mood lightened a little.
“I knocked it over and forgot to pick it up,” I lied. “I’ll do it in minute.”
I rolled out of bed and made my way slowly but surely to my bedroom door. I opened the door and screamed.
“Hi.” Contessa smiled brightly and waved.
When my heart was beating normally again I smiled back. She was here again. The date must have gone well then.
“You don’t feel so good,” she said, frowning. “And you’re eyes are red. Are you ill?”
“I’ll be fine soon,” I replied. “Although you will not feel so good soon. You got my father drunk last night.”
Contessa’s eyes widened and the she was gone. I laughed quietly to myself and then made my way downstairs. Charlie was eating cereal in at the kitchen table and looked as bad as I felt at this moment in time. His hair was all over the place, his face pale and his eyes were bloodshot. I smiled slightly and leaned against the door jamb.
“Shouldn’t drink so much,” I tutted to him. “Bad for you.”
He put down his spoon and yawned, stretching his arms out.
“I haven’t drunk like that in years,” he said, rubbing his face. “I don’t think I can handle it like I used to.”
I walked slowly over to the broken glass on the floor and saw the orchids Edward had brought me. I picked each one up carefully and held then gently in my hands.
“Did Edward bring you those?” Charlie asked me. He turned around in his chair to look at me.
“Yeah, he did,” I said and immediately concentrated on something else so Charlie didn’t know what had happened after he’d brought the flowers. My next thought was Loretta. I couldn’t help it. She was plaguing my mind. Tears slid down my cheeks before I could think of something else. Charlie was up and next to me in seconds, his arms around me.
“What’s wrong?” he asked me. “What’s upset you?”
“I don’t know what’s wrong with me,” I cried. “I don’t know her yet I grieve for her as if I love her.” I buried my head in his shoulder, the flowers crushed against his chest.
“You had another premonition,” he stated. “You feel what they feel. You’re put into their bodies, their minds and you feel their emotions like they are you’re own. It shows you’re ability is developing and settling.”
“But it hurts now,” I sobbed. “I can’t get rid of it. If I feel like this, what must he feel like?”
I opened my mouth to tell him, explain to him what I saw and felt when there was a knock on the front door.
“I’ll get it!” I heard Tess shout. I wondered where she had run to after I threatened her.
“So what did you see?” he asked me. His hand stroked my hair in a bid to soothe my pain but it didn’t help.
“I NEED TO SEE HIM NOW!” a familiar voice screamed. “UNHAND ME!”
I pulled away from Charlie, dropping the flowers and ran to the door, to him. He was standing half inside the hallway and Tess had a firm grip on his arms. His face was contorted with anger and he was vainly trying to get inside. I pulled Tess off him and he stumbled forward. He stood up straight and looked at me. His face softened and he smiled.
“Michaela,” he said. “How are you?”
“Never mind me,” I said, looking him up and down. He looked just like he had in my vision. “Look at you.”
“Zach?” Charlie said behind me. “What happened? Come in, come in.”
“Thank you, Charlie,” he said and he stepped forward. In doing so he revealed the small boy hidden behind him. It was the boy from my both my visions.
“Kyo,” I said and I felt an overwhelming urge to protect him. He gazed up at me with those intelligent eyes and I had the feeling he was reading my mind.
“Father,” he said, tugging on Zachariah’s hand. “She had a vision about me.”
So he was reading my mind. I smiled slightly and walked away though doing so worried me. Kyo was alone and hurt. I should go back and carry him into the living room and check him over. I resisted the urge and followed Charlie into the living room. Tess was sitting on the couch looking annoyed. I guessed I had upset her with my violent need to see Zachariah.
“Sorry,” I said to her and smiled tentatively. She ignored me and walked away into the kitchen. She’d come around. She was too bubbly to be mad at people for long.
“What happened to you?” Charlie said, as soon as Zach and Kyo were seated. “I thought you were safe once you’d left the castle.”
The castle. Loren’s castle. They had escaped, Zach, Loretta and Kyo. But didn’t Loren say he was going to punish them? Anger swelled up inside me at the thought of Zach and Kyo being hurt. I could see Kyo holding his arm and grimacing slightly. I knew it was broken. I knew because Zach knew.
“Charlie,” I said. “Ky is hurt. Can you heal him?” There was a difference to my voice, something behind it that I didn’t recognise. I never called my father Charlie unless I was angry at him.
Charlie looked at me quizzically but held out his hands anyway.
“It’s okay, Kyo,” Zach said, nudging his son towards Charlie. “Just hold out your arm. It’ll be okay.”
Kyo held out his hands and I could clearly see it was broken. It was at an odd angle and you could see the pain in Ky’s eyes even though his face was blank. Charlie held his hands over Kyo’s broken arm and a silver light emitted from his hands. I remembered the time I’d healed Charlie and how I could feel his skin closing up underneath my hands. Could he feel the bone healing under his touch? The light faded and Kyo looked happier. I felt happier seeing him happy.
“Thank you,” he said, in his quiet voice.
“No problem, kid,” Charlie said, smiling at him. “Kayla, why don’t you take Kyo upstairs? I’m sure there are some games he could play while Zach and I talk.”
I didn’t want to go and leave him and Zach to talk. I wanted to stay here with Zach. I wanted Zach and Kyo to stay together in the same room. I opened my mouth to argue but Charlie looked at me sternly and I closed my mouth. I motioned to Kyo to follow me and I took him up to my room.
“You’re still in your pyjamas,” Kyo commented, sitting on my bed.
I looked down and saw that I was still in my shorts and t-shirt pyjama set.
“Yes I am,” I said, laughing. “Do you mind?”
He shook his head. I could feel his eyes on me as I searched through my wardrobe for the old games I used to play with when I visited Charlie.
“Do you know my mother?” Kyo asked suddenly. I heard the tears in his voice and it stopped me.
“Uh, no,” I answered. My hand touched a cardboard box and I pulled it out. I turned around, box in hand and I saw the tears in his eyes. They hadn’t fallen yet.
“I can see her in you,” he said. “I can see her in your mind.”
I placed the box on the floor and knelt in front of it. I opened the lid and inside was children’s games. Snakes and ladders, Jenga, Monopoly. I pulled out Snakes and ladders and laid it on the floor.
“I can see her in your mind,” Ky repeated.
“I heard you,” I said, as I set up the game. I didn’t want to tell him why she was in my mind. Why I thought about her. It would be too strange for him.
“Red or yellow?” I said, holding up to plastic counters.
“Why is she in your mind?” he asked me.
I put the counters down. I liked yellow so he would be red. He liked to be red anyway so it didn’t really matter. I rolled the die, which came up a three and moved my counter three spaces. I picked up the die and held it out to him.
“You roll now,” I said.
He looked at my hand with the die sitting on it. The die spun in my hand and landed on a six.
“I asked a question.”
“You know why she’s in my mind,” I answered. “I had a vision about you, you know that. I heard you ask your dad if your mother was safe. That’s why.”
He tilted his head to the side. His green eyes confused. I dropped the die and moved his red counter six spaces.
“That’s why I’m thinking about her,” I continued. “Because I felt Zach’s pain. I’ll get over it. Don’t worry.”
“You don’t understand,” he whispered. “You aren’t following me.”
I didn’t like his voice. I kept my eyes on the die as it rolled across the floor and stopped on five. I moved my counter the number of spaces and picked up the die.
“She’s in your mind,” Kyo said. “She’s in your mind.”