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Princess of Wands: Chapter Eight

       Last updated: Monday, September 19, 2005 19:31 EDT



    Barbara lay in the hospital bed, looking up at the ceiling and occasionally rattling the handcuff on her left wrist. For the past three days she had tried to explain to people that she was not crazy. For which act she had been chained to her bed and visited by a stream of psychiatrists.

    "Mrs. Everette," the doctor said, gently. "I know you think you saw what you're saying you saw. But under extreme stress, hallucinations can occur. You've been under a lot of stress, lately. We've spoken to your husband and he tells us that you were already acting . . . erratically . . ."

    "I am not crazy," Barbara said, trying not to cry. But who was she to judge? The first thing a crazy person was sure of was that they weren't crazy. Who was she to think that the Lord and Savior would give her the power to dispel a demon? She knew that she tried to live her life in a Christian manner, but she was no warrior of God. She knew that.

    "No, you're not crazy, Barbara," the doctor said, shaking his head. "Apparently there was a group of rapists and murderers that were keeping the town under their thumb. But the only person who saw this god-monster was you. Now, the police are aware that you may have committed some acts that you could be charged with. But they're willing to overlook that, given that you stopped the Ripper killings. However, with your continued delusionary state . . ."

    Barb tuned him out. They were going to let her go, only if she promised not to talk about what she'd seen. Realistically, there wasn't anyone she could tell. Who would believe her?

    "Barbara, I'm going to come back in a while," the psychiatrist said, standing up. "If you'd like, I could prescribe a sedative . . ."

    "No thank you," she said. "My body is a temple of God. I'll take a pain killer if I need it, but no mind altering drugs."

    "I'm sorry, but it may come to that," the doctor said, shaking his head. "We'll talk later."

    She lay back, closing her eyes against tears, her abdomen shuddering with the need to cry. Kelly was dead, his chest flailed by the monster. She'd failed him. That was the thing that kept coming back to her, not the victory, if there had been one, but the sight of his pain ravaged face telling her to "go, go."

    She opened her eyes and glared at the door as there was a light knock.

    "Come in," she ground out. She was done with being Mrs. Nice to these people. Maybe God would forgive her that as well.

    The man who entered was not, apparently, a doctor. And older guy, very well preserved, though, with distinguished gray at his temples and black hair. Nice suit.

    "Who are you?" she asked.

    "Augustus Germaine. I'm here to congratulate you."

    "On what? Being crazy?"

    "You're not by any means crazy, Mrs. Everette. And I'm sorry it's taken me this long to pull the strings to get you out of here. A warrior of the Lord who dispels an avatar of Almadu deserves far better. However, up until yesterday I was in Serbia tracking a werewolf that was causing a spot of trouble. Would you consider having dinner with me? I have a job offer I think you might entertain."

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