Archive for May, 2013

To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 92) Hidden Away

Once released, she makes it to the end of the attic where there is indeed a window. She tries to open it, but it is not budging. “Oh no, No!” she says while looking out at the yard below. She presses her face up against the windowpane and sees the yard is flooded with large pools of rainwater standing throughout as lightning reflects into them. Even if she could get the window open, it is a straight two-story drop to the ground. This is not at all a way out. This is nothing more than a trap. Turning the flashlight off, she rolls down from the window putting her back against the wall.

“Now what, now what?” she says barely whispering as she looks back at the obscurity of the attic. Trembling uncontrollably, she looks around knowing Crispin is not far behind. Quietly she slides sideways along the wall and discovers that to her right is a small area behind the brick of the chimney. She decides to slip inside to hide there. Sliding into the nook she is hidden away from the sporadic lightning of the storm that could possibly give her away. Once settled she closes her eyes and leans her head against the cool brick and she listens.

Excerpt 92

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 91) Delicate Red Tip

“The red rose whispers of passion and the white rose breathes of love; O, the red rose is a falcon, and the white rose is a dove.” says Crispin as he lies beside Lyla. Slowly she opens her eyes and sees that Crispin is holding a single white rose on a long stem. Each full creamy petal has a delicate red tip and Crispin tenderly brings it closer to her.

Trembling, Lyla looks at Crispin and takes the rose from his hand. Now he is within inches of her face as he leans in and says, “But I send you a cream-white-rosebud with a flush on its petal tips; for the love that is purest and sweetest, has a kiss of desire on the lips.” Lyla closes her eyes once again as Crispin leans in to kiss her. Once his lips meet hers a loud clap of thunder startles her and as if awakening from a deep sleep she opens her eyes and pushes Crispin back causing him to hit his head on a crossbeam.

“Ah!” he yells as he leans down holding his head with one hand and grabbing for Lyla with the other. “Lyla! Listen!” he shouts. Lyla rolls over and crawls as fast as she can to get away. “No!” she screams as he grabs her foot pulling her back. The dusty wooden floor of the attic makes it especially slippery and hard to get traction as she fights to get free.

“No, stop it!” she is shaking in fear as she feels Crispin lunging at her pulling at her feet. Several times he gets a hold of her and each time she is pulled back towards him. Reaching out she grabs two beams with her hands pulling and kicking with enough force to break free from Crispin’s unyielding hold.
Excerpt 91

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 90) Serene And Hypnotizing

Time has passed but Lyla has no concept of how much. Crispin releases his hold on her leg, she can even feel that he has, but something about her is different now and she does not try to flee. They sit there in the low light of the flashlight looking at each other but saying nothing. Gradually Crispin begins to change back to himself and has a kind and caring expression. He is saying something to her, she sees his mouth moving but she cannot hear him. It is difficult to see him now too, she feels as if she is behind a wall of moving water and he is staying very still, watching her. Gradually all sounds become normal again, she can now hear his voice clearly.

“Lyla, please calm down,” he says in a peaceful compassionate voice as he stays where he is. He is not holding her nor is he attempting to get any closer. “Please hear me out.” As he talks his eyes flicker with brilliant green shades of light in a fascinating and soothing way. The blend of color is unlike anything she has ever seen before and she cannot help but want to watch them shift and shimmer in slow, smoke like swirls.  Watching their movement is very serene and hypnotizing as Lyla slowly lowers the flashlight to the floor. She does not turn it off as she sets it beside her while concentrating on Crispin. Gently closing her eyes, she lays back on the floor with her hands over her face. She is exhausted and worn and feels completely drained of energy. She wants it all to stop.

“There, see, relax,” says Crispin as he begins to slowly crawl closer to her. He is moving in a gentle manner, not hurried or harsh and Lyla can feel him now at her legs as he slides up almost laying on top of her. She lowers her hands resting them on the floor above her head but keeps her eyes closed tight as she feels Crispin’s breath on her neck and face.

Excerpt 90

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 89) Dream State

Kicking and screaming, Lyla turns on the flashlight and shines it directly at Crispin’s face trying to blind him. Still holding on to her he puts one hand up to shade his eyes from the light but he will not let go; he holds her leg even tighter than before. Slowly he drops his hand from blocking the light as he regains his composure.

All the while, Crispin does not loosen his hold on her ankle. He looks at her without saying a word and she seems to be frozen as she watches his face, unsure of what will happen now. Crispin’s features begin to shift, slow and steady subtle and delicate. His eyes reshape and his nose grows more pointed and the hairline realigns. Little by little Crispin changes from himself to Marcus.

Lyla stops moving and lowers the light as her eyes fill with tears. “No, not Marcus, please tell me you didn’t harm Marcus,” she says as she slowly shakes her head from side to side fearing her best friend is dead. Crispin as Marcus, is looking into her eyes and she does all she can to avoid his stare. However, the impulse is too strong and she feels herself being drawn in, pulled almost willingly, and she cannot control it.

It is not like before when she felt warm and faint. This time is much different, this time she feels as if she is in a dream state of sorts and everything is moving at a slow rate around her. She has the sensation of floating on very thick ripples of air as time travels in slow motion. It’s difficult to move and all sounds are muffled and subdued.

Excerpt 89

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 88) Spider After His Prey

Holding her breath, Lyla opens her eyes and tries to focus. She has an overwhelming and horrid feeling in her gut that someone is there, just out of reach, watching. Spike like needles of energy are tingling up her spine as a forewarning of imminent terror. It is almost painful and relentless and she knows she must move away quickly. As Lyla leans up to roll back into a crawling position, lightning lights the end of the attic, which reflects off Crispin’s face! He is within inches of her feet!

He too is crawling through the rafters on his hands and knees. For a man this size, it makes him appear very spider like as if chasing after his prey. His strong arms are holding up his muscular build with ease as he grabs at her left foot attempting to stop her from moving. Lyla screams loudly as she frantically backs up pulling herself through the beams as Crispin continues to reach out for her.

Lyla has no idea of what is behind her as she tugs and slides through the joist and timber. A nail snags her lace top holding her in place as flash lightning strikes over and over again outside. The constant bursts of light is so repetitious that it’s causing a strobe effect in the attic as their movements are caught in choppy intervals which make it all the more frightening.

Finally, Lyla rips free of the nail by tearing a gash in the sleeve of her top and she begins to move again. She hurries to get closer and closer to the window but she can see that Crispin is rapidly gaining ground on her. She is now in a state of panic as she pushes and kicks trying to put some distance between them. This works well until Crispin lunges forward, almost inhuman like, and grabs hold of her leg just above her left foot.

Excerpt 88

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 87) Far More Sinister

Moving quietly in the dark, Lyla finds herself in another small area with hard wooden floors. This gives her hope that she is approaching an open room similar to where she just came from. Suddenly she hears a heavy thud. Whatever fell was not too far from where she is and it was big, she felt it jar the floor. Stopping instantaneously, she rolls onto her back to look behind her.

Partially sitting up and leaning back on her elbows, Lyla peers into the blackness. It is incredibly dark and she feels as if a veil is over her face. Afraid to use the flashlight for fear of giving herself away, she quietly sits. With eyes open wide, she is watching for anything to catch her attention.

Thunder pounds loudly as she closes her eyes in response. Again she tries to calm herself down by resting but this task seems to be impossible. Abruptly, she feels a rush of pressure as if someone is running upon her and she wants to scream! It is worse than the feeling she had on the staircase just days ago. It feels far more sinister than the dark mass she saw in her bedroom. Something or someone is there, she can feel it!

Excerpt 87

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 86) She Freezes In Place

Quickly pulling her foot up, Lyla steps back from the ladder so if anyone is looking up, she will not be seen. The only problem is, the light, it is on when normally it should be off. Standing there for a moment, she listens for the sound of someone approaching but she does not hear anything except for the pounding in her head.

Angst begins to take over again as she looks around for a place to hide. Thunder rolls deeply through the air as the wind and rain starts to pick up once again. This makes it much more difficult to hear while in the attic space. “Shit!” says Lyla to herself as she looks around. She knows she is trapped.

What if it is Marcus and he is looking for her? What if it’s not? What if it’s Crispin? After all he looked up as if he knew she was in the attic and he did step off toward the kitchen only moments ago. Lyla begins moving in the direction of the attic where earlier, she saw the lightning flicker. She knows no matter what she needs to get moving and to find a place to hide.

“There has to be windows over there somewhere.” she whispers as she crawls on her hands and knees toward the far end of the house. It is tedious and very slow going since she has to practically pull herself along as she weaves in and out of beams. Lightning crackles in the air and thunder hits almost immediately.

With a loud pop the power goes out again leaving Lyla in complete darkness. She stops immediately in a crawling position and turns her head to look in the direction of the hole where the ladder is. She freezes in place and she waits.

Excerpt 86

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 85) Pop Open

Sitting there in the dimly lit attic, Lyla’s heart is racing and she can feel the blood pumping through her head and she knows she must get moving. “He knows I’m here.” she says to herself as she quickly and quietly starts to move back to the main area of the attic. Crawling and carefully placing herself on the beams has made her knees and hands dreadfully sore but she is working through the pain as best she can, she has to.

“He’s going to come up! I know it; he’s going to find me! Damn it, damn it!” she says as she tries to pick up the pace. Even though the small light is on Lyla still cannot see very far into the eaves and angles of the house. The glow of the single bulb is casting odd shadows back through the beams and rafters creating a dizzy effect. It almost looks like there is movement in the shadows, which causes Lyla even more distress.

“I need to hide,” she says to herself, “where can I hide?” Crawling back through the dusty rafters as fast as she can, she finally reaches the ladder. Standing there, hesitating, she is not sure if she should try to go down stairs or continue in the direction she is going. She feels she should try to reach the other end of the house where there might be a window.

Wavering back and forth with her thoughts, she decides it might be better to get away from the house altogether and that would be by going back downstairs to the kitchen and out the front door. Lyla places her left foot on the first rung of the ladder when suddenly she hears the little pantry door pop open two floors below.

Excerpt 85

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 84) Holds His Stare

“Hum, would you look at that?” says one of the men as Crispin slowly walks toward them. “We must have really been bringing down the house, eh?” he says laughingly as he picks up the piece of spackling and places it in Crispin’s hand.  “Yes, I would say you did a marvelous job indeed.” says Crispin as he shakes hands with each of the band members. He then very slowly glances up to where Lyla is and holds his stare for a long time. It was much too long for Lyla. She quickly pulls her eye away from the little hole as if she had been shot.

“Damn it!” she says gritting her teeth. She can feel her entire body tense up as her heart begins to pound loudly. She then hears Crispin talking again. “You guys did a remarkable job, with and without power.” He says in a rather upbeat manner. All of them laugh, then he continues with “I may require your services in the future.” He sees the musicians to the door. Hearing this, Lyla looks back down at the foyer as Crispin comes into view once again.

In a very casual manner, he puts his hands in his pockets and glances into the living and dining room to see if anyone has stayed behind. He is very calm and cool as he looks straight up at her trying to make it as obvious as possible that he knows she is there. He grins as if he can see right through the tiles of the ceiling.

Crispin looks down for a second or two and when he glances back up at her, he has a big wide smile on his face. Slowly he turns and steps out of view as he heads in the direction of the kitchen. Lyla knows he will find the little door to the attic and ultimately, her.

Excerpt 84

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 83) She Freezes In Fear

“Good timing, now I can really see what’s going on.” Lyla quietly peeks though the hole to the brightly lit room. She watches as several people cruise from the foyer to the living and dining rooms, drinks in hand. A few individuals are saying goodbye to each other as they head home now that there seems to be a slight break in the storm.

“If you ever find Lyla, tell her it was a great party!” says Rachel as she and four others walk out the front door. “Oh Rachel, I’m so glad you are okay.” Lyla whispers as she spies on the group from above. “Where are you Crispin?” As if on cue, Crispin slowly walks from the dining room into the brightly lit foyer. He looks perfectly put together as if nothing out of the ordinary has happened tonight. He has his suit jacket on and his tie loosened in a relaxed way.

“It was a pleasure to meet you.” says a man to Crispin as the two shake hands. “Likewise.” replies Crispin as he smiles without a care.  “Give me a call if you’re interested in doing business.” One man says to Crispin as they too shake hands. He and his wife head for the front door. “Oh that I will, that I will.” repeats Crispin as he slowly looks around.

Lyla knows he is looking for her and this makes her incredibly nervous. The music has stopped and it seems that more and more of the group have decided to call it a night. Crispin walks out of sight and Lyla is overcome with a very uneasy, sickening feeling. She does not see him anywhere. The musicians have loaded up their gear and have stopped directly underneath the light fixture where Lyla is lying. One of the men begins to tap at his jacket and then his pant pockets. It appears he is looking for his car keys.

“Oh, I found them!” he yells in the direction of the dining room. At that moment, as if in slow motion, a tiny piece of the ceiling falls from around the light fixture landing on one of the musician’s instrument cases. Lyla freezes in fear. She lies there, perfectly still, holding her breath and hoping they do not notice it. Her eyes are wide open as she watches them closely.

Excerpt 83

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 82) What If

Lying flat and across open beams, Lyla peers through a small hole where the wiring of the light is strung through. The power is still out and she needs to let her eyes adjust from using the flashlight so she flips it off. Lying face down in the dark, she stays incredibly quiet and shuts her eyes. Again, her hearing seems to magnify itself as she can now make out voices and words as the sounds from below become easier to hear. A few minutes later thunder breaks the quiet as the house shakes in response; Lyla keeps her eyes closed tight.

She tries to imagine what it would be like if she had stayed in the city and never answered the email from Crispin. What if Marcus, Penny, and Marnie could not be tied to her in any fashion, their lives would be calm and normal today. Oh how quickly things can change. In a split second, the lives of many were disturbed and it was so very easy to do. As these thoughts run through her head she finds herself getting angry and she tries to focus again on her breathing.

Deeply she inhales and slowly exhales through her mouth trying to relax when there is a loud cheer from the group below. Opening her eyes, she sees the power has come back on and the attendees below are clapping and laughing.

Excerpt 82

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 81) Ceiling Over The Foyer

“I need to see what’s going on downstairs,” Lyla mumbles to herself as she tries to calm her nerves. One thing she knows she can count on is that Crispin is down there and he will not leave, not until he finds her. She looks around trying to get her directions straight in her mind so she will know which way to go.

“I’ve got to get to the ceiling over the foyer so I can see all the way down to the first floor.” She shines the flashlight in the direction of the music, which is now terribly hard to hear. Most of the attic is hard wood flooring but over near where she must go there are only beams, sheetrock and plaster. “Looks like I’ll be crawling.” She gets on her hands and knees and slowly crawls through the rafters and beams of the dark attic being careful not to step through the ceiling.

Many years of debris has gathered on the wood and a couple of times Lyla has almost sneezed as she makes her way along. Her hands are dirty from the breakdown of building materials that has lightly coated the entire space. Her dark blue pants have now turned to golden beige as she slides through the powdery dust. It takes several minutes but she finally makes her way to the light fixture of the two-story foyer.

Excerpt 81

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 80) A Way Out, Or In

Lyla is hoping that if Crispin has to look for her, he won’t have time to hurt anymore of her friends. She holds her breath and sits very still as she listens to his footsteps get further and further away. Slowly turning, she feels around for the light switch on the wall. Once found, she flips it on but nothing happens. “Oh you idiot,” she whispers to herself, “no power.” With a little click, she switches the flashlight on and looks toward the top as she climbs the ladder up two floors, finally reaching the attic.

The rain and wind sounds violent and harsh as she sits on the attic floor to catch her breath after the long climb. She can barely hear the music playing from downstairs but as long as the party is still going, it is an indication to her that all is well, at least for now.

“What am I going to do?” she asks herself. “Crispin will kill anyone that gets in his way.” She shines the light around the large empty space. Her flashlight is dim which does not allow her to see very far ahead. As with many old homes with character, this one has several peaks and angles to the roofline cutting the attic into various shapes and sizes. The ladder brought her to the central area of the house where it is tall enough to stand. However, she does not see any hallways or walkways to other areas, only crawl spaces and narrow shady nooks. Suddenly there is a flicker of light at the other end of the house as lightning flashes and thunder rumbles close by.

“There must be windows on that end of the attic,” she says to herself now hopeful that she may have a direction to go. “There’s got to be other large areas like this and possibly another way out, or in.” Lyla shivers and realizes she is shaking as she looks down at her trembling hands.

Excerpt 80

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To Dance With A Fetch (Excerpt 79) Outside The Door

The footsteps come closer as another tap can be heard on the wall near her. She is holding her breath and sitting as quietly as possible. Now the footsteps are on the other side of the little pantry door.  “Who is it?” She thinks to herself. “What if it’s Marcus?” The footsteps move on toward the back entry to the kitchen and there is another tap as if someone is looking for a secret wall or door.

Shaking, Lyla tries to turn the knob very slowly hoping she can push the door open a crack, just enough to look out.  As she twists the knob she hears Crispin say, “I can feel you near, Lyla. You cannot hide from me long; I know your curiosity will get the better of you.” He slowly walks past the door again and taps the pantry near the little cubical where she sits.

“I have faith you’ll understand and partner with me once I am able to explain myself.” He says as he paces outside the door. “Please give me a chance, Lyla. We can have something wonderful together you and me.” His steps stop and she is sure that he has discovered her hiding place. Holding her breath she closes her eyes at tight as she can while Crispin speaks. “I don’t want you thinking ill of me; I just need a few minutes alone with you, Lyla. I want to help you understand my purpose.”

Excerpt 79

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