Just when you think you have a cold licked, it decides that it isn’t quite through with you yet. The sniffly nose and scratchy throat were gone last night but came back while I slept, and I’ll be fighting this off while I go to electrolysis this morning. Joy.
However . . . something got done. Would you believe the first scene of the first chapters of the first part of Act Three?
Yes, the aftermath of Kerry’s “She’s Coming For Me Duh Dun DUUUUUUNNNNNNNNN!” moment is here, started last night and finished before Into the Badlands began. And just like all of what I wrote the last time, here is the scene in its entirety. With comments from me, of course, but just as I wrote it last night. And speaking of the night, we pick up not long after Kerry had his latest of bad dreams . . .
(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)
Denna did not believe a little after two-thirty was the best time to ask questions of someone, but given the situation, and the person of whom they needed to ask, she felt it was best to do this now rather than wait until morning and, perhaps, miss something important.
She hurried to the Great Hall as soon as Coraline called, needing only enough time to change out of her night clothes before jaunting to the first floor landing outside the hospital entrance. She greeted Nurse Gretchen as she entered the ward and headed around the corner to Bay #1, which she entered as she was expected.
Kerry was partially propped up in bed: Coraline explained that he wasn’t fully healed and she didn’t want to make him any more uncomfortable than he was right now. Annie was seated on Kerry’s left, holding his hand while watching Coraline and her. Deanna did a quick scan of Annie’s aura and witnessed the flow of muddy indigo running through the light pink. She didn’t need to give Annie’s feelings any further thought: her worry and concern were a given.
With Coraline and her sitting on the other bed Kerry told what he remembered of this current dream. Deanna watched him as he spoke. She heard the fatigue in his voice and noticed the twinges of pain that shot across his face as he related his tale. She appreciated that he was tired and still shaken by what he’d experienced, but at the same time she found his dream fascinating—and not a bit disturbing.
When he finished Deanna allowed him a few seconds to regather his strength and accept some tenderness from Annie by way of a few squeezes of his hand and soft, lingering looks. It was only when he turned back to them that she asked questions. “You say this girl stood in your backyard and simply looked up at you?”
Kerry sighed. “Yeah.”
That’s some pretty scary stuff there, Kerry. Are you sure she did nothing else?
He looked down towards his lap for a moment. “She waved.”
Coraline twisted the right corner of her mouth upward. “She waved?”
“Uh, huh. Like—” He tried to move his left hand but Annie held it tight and shook her head. He chuckled. “I guess I shouldn’t give examples.”
“We get the idea, Kerry.”
Deanna exhaled slowly. “Did you wave back?”
Kerry thought for a moment. “I don’t—” He blinked slowly, as if fighting to stay awake. “I’m not sure. I don’t think I did.”
Annie spoke for the first time since the two women began questioning Kerry. “Is that important?”
You know Kerry was going for that little Queen’s Wave, with the hand going back and forth so nicely. Sure, he couldn’t, because broken wrist and all, but he tried.
And now that we got the wave thing out of the way, what does it mean? Cue our Resident Seer and Dream Expert Deanna–
“Waving is a powerful dream symbolism.” Deanna leaned forward slowly. “For someone to wave at you means they could be looking for support—and given that we know she’s told Kerry that he hold her life in his hands, it would seem to be a continuation of that concept.”
Annie glanced at Kerry for the slightest moment. “And waving back?”
The seer stared off into unfocused nothingness. “One is trying to acknowledge the other person, perhaps recognize them. There’s also . . .” Deanna slowly turned his attention back to Kerry and stared at him with great intensity for a few seconds before she turned to Coraline and spoke in Esperanto. “Mi bezonas vian helpon.”
Coraline replied in the same language. “Kio?”
Deanna kept her tone normal. “Mi tuj demandas al li demandon, kaj mi volas ke vi rigardu sia aŭro kiam li respondas.”
The school’s doctor nodded once. “Certe. Petu for.”
When the adults break out the Esperanto, you know they’re talking about you. By now Annie and Kerry are smart enough to get this, but they say nothing. After all, what can they say? “Hey, you adults, stop talking about us?” Doesn’t work that way.
I won’t tell you what was asked by Deanna, but I will say that Coraline’s last statement is, “Sure, ask away.” So Deanna does:
“Okay.” Deanna asked her question. “Kerry, are you certain you don’t know the identity of this girl? That you’ve never met her before?”
This time Kerry shook his head slowly and waited a few seconds before answering. “I don’t know her, really. I’ve only seen her in my dreams, and I have no idea . . .” He closed his eyes and sighed with great weariness. “I don’t know her.”
“Okay, Kerry.” Deanna smiled brightly. “I had to ask, that’s all.” She stood and addressed Coraline. “I don’t believe we’re helping these two by keeping them up any longer.”
Coraline made her way to her feet as well. “You’re right.” She turned to her patient and his most careful attendant. “You feeling okay?”
Kerry settled back against his pillow. “My insides feel like they’re twisting up now and then.”
“That’s those little magical nanoids still doing their thing.” She checked his vitals on the monitors above his bed. “I’m going to have Nurse Gretchen come in and re-medicate you so you can get back to sleep.”
A worried look came over his face. “Am I gonna—?”
“You won’t dream again.” Deanna put as much comfort in her tone as possible to put him at ease. “At least I would think you won’t have that one again. Based upon your other experiences, I think once a night is enough.”
He drew in several noticeable breaths before meeting the seer’s gaze. “What’s wrong with me, Deanna?”
“I don’t believe there’s anything wrong with you, Kerry. These dreams mean something: all we have to do is find that meaning.” She rested her hand on the railing at the foot of his bed. “That’s why I’m here—to help. And I will help.”
Finally Kerry’s starting to thing, or believe, or assume, that there’s something wrong with him. Remember how Jessica mentioned–in her head, of course–that from here on out the B Levels have to deal with a lot of pressure, both from school and having to come out to their parents? Now Kerry’s starting to deal with this shit, and it’s starting to mess with his head.
But Deanna assured him that there’s nothing wrong, so he shouldn’t worry. Right? Ummm . . .
Coraline moved around Deanna and stood next to the privacy curtain. “Gretchen will be here in a few: I’ll see you both in the morning.” She opened the curtain and waited for Deanna to step into the ward corridor before heading for her office. She instructed Gretchen to re-medicate Kerry well enough to get him through the rest of the night and into mid-morning, and watched her as she went to the supply closet. Only then she did close the door and turn to Deanna. “Were you looking?”
“Of course.” She looked out the office windows towards Bay #1. “The question is, did you see?”
“I did.” Coraline seemed to wither as she sighed. “So what the hell does that mean?”
Deanna shook her head and replied in a low tone. “Damned if I know.”
“What’s our next move, then?”
Deanna hated to take this next step, but she felt there wasn’t any choice. “We need to speak to Mathilde. I believe we’re going to need help—” She glanced at Coraline out of the corner of her eye. “—or at least get a different perspective on this matter.”
What did they see? Well, as I like to say, I know, but you don’t–not yet. That comes tonight, when I write the next scene. Assuming I’m not dying from a cold.