Archive for April, 2014

The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 376) State Of Shock

Lyla does not want to be alone, but she also realizes Crispin must take care of Quinn’s body, so she does as he suggest. Maybe he is right, maybe she is in a state of shock, for she feels numb and disconnected from what has happened. Crispin runs her a hot bath and has a fire started before she even decides to get up from the bed. He sits back down next to her.

“Are you leaving?” she asks.

“I did not plan to, but will if you want me to.” He replies as he holds her hand.

“I don’t want you to go.” She says as she stands up. He stands as well and pulls her hand to his lips.

“First, I must tend to a few things but I’ll be back shortly, Lyla.” He says gently as he squeezes her hand and leaves the room.

The bath is warm and it smells of sweet berries. She steps in letting the tap continue to flow until the water is up around her neck. The warm buoyancy is so relaxing that she finds herself becoming extremely tired and is completely unaware of what the time is or how long she has been soaking.

With the various memories she has recalled and the strange events of this evening fresh in her mind, she expects to hear sounds from Crispin moving about downstairs. Oddly, the house is eerily quiet except for the occasional snapping and popping from the fireplace.

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 375) Downstairs

Instead of following the passageway to the first floor, Crispin stops at the entry to the guest bedroom. He pulls a latch and it clicks releasing a wooden side panel that opens to the room. This is the room Marcus and Lyla spent time in the night of the party. They discussed the odd things that were happening and Marcus explained his theory that Crispin might be a doppelgänger, which has turned out to be true.

“How did you know there was a hidden passage?” Lyla asks as she stands just inside the entry to the room. She looks back at the small hall and steep steps they just came from.

“I stayed here, with my aunt, for a short time when I was very young.” Replies Crispin as once again, he holds his hand out to assist her.

“I remember a girl my age would stand out near the road and look up at the windows. I used to tell myself she knew I was here.” He grins and Lyla wonders if the little girl he speaks of was her.

Sweetly, Crispin helps Lyla out of the passage keeping his arm around her as if he is afraid she will faint. He closes the thin door behind them and they walk out into the dark hall. He is extremely familiar with the layout of the house and takes Lyla directly to her bedroom. She sits on the bed while he turns the lamp on as well as the light in the bathroom.

“Would you like me to run you a bath?” he asks as he sits next to her. “While you’re in there I can start a fire so your room will be warm.” He looks down at the floor. “I must tend to things downstairs as well.” Lyla knows this is in reference to his uncle.

Excerpt 375

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 374) Their Descent

To Lyla’s surprise Crispin takes her by the hand, picks the flashlight up from the floor, and leads her to the back wall of the attic. They follow it going east which takes them to a chimney. This flu services the fireplace to the second floor bedroom as well as the dining room on the first floor. He taps on an ornate block of wood and a thin door unlatches. Pulling it open, it creaks a bit as it scrapes across the floor. Crispin then steps inside the small hall as Lyla stands still watching him. He turns to look at her, smiles, and extends his hand.

“Come on, it will be alright.” He says softly. Holding on to Crispin’s hand, Lyla follows him through short little nooks that twist and turn as they make their descent. All the sharp angles and little steps remind her of what a haunted house at a carnival is like. They turn to the right and down several steps until they walk straight then turn to the left. She has no idea of which direction they are going.

How is it that Crispin knows of this passageway? It is as if he is more familiar with this house than she is. Months ago, when she was trying to find her way out of the attic she headed in the opposite direction and found herself in a trap.

“In a trap.” She thinks to herself. “Am I walking into a trap now?”

Excerpt 374

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 373) He Hesitates

“I am so sorry Lyla. I had no idea of what he was up to.” Crispin’s breathing is rapid as he glances at the darkness of the pit below. Lyla holds tightly to him, she is stunned by what she just witnessed and is shaking from the entire experience here in the attic. She feels horrible for Crispin and now has more questions than before. What is she to say to him? He just killed his own uncle.

“Are you alright? Did he hurt you?” Crispin asks as he holds her at arm’s length looking her up and down. “Your hand is bleeding.” He says as he holds it palm up.

“I must have cut it when I. . .” she stops before finishing the sentence.

“What is it?” He asks. He looks her in the eyes as if trying to read her thoughts then pulls her close once again hugging her tightly. She can feel his warm breath on her neck and she feels safe in his arms.

“You’re in shock, aren’t you?” He is holding onto her as if his life depended on it. Slowly he looks again at the opening to the ladder and knowing Quinn’s body will be at the bottom, he hesitates.

“We need to get you downstairs.” He says quietly. “Let me show you another way.”

Excerpt 373

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 372) Farewell

“I can’t have you waltzing in here destroying all that I have built.” Quinn says to Lyla in a calm yet arrogant tone, he then nods as if he thinks Crispin is still behind him. “My nephew does good work, actually the best that’s ever been. I can even say he taught me a thing or two, but he has a soft spot and it happens to be for you.” States Quinn in the same gravelly tone he used earlier.

Lyla now realizes that Quinn is the one that came back to the house after Marcus escorted Crispin out. He too must have the skills that Crispin spoke of for he proved to be a very convincing duplicate. “I believe it’s time to meet your fate, Lyla.” He says as he looks at the opening to the ladder. Even in the dim lighting, Lyla catches onto his intentions immediately. He is going to push her down the shaft! She grabs a hold of the railing with both hands and Quinn laughs.

“Handrails won’t save you when they are faulty.” He says as he kicks at the wood breaking her hold. With one more kick, the rail breaks free. It falls two stories to the floor below making a splintering cracking sound as it hits the bottom. “That’s too bad.” He says as he cringes at the sound it made. “I’m sorry dear, but the carpenters must have forgotten to secure the rail when they were here working on the house. I’m sure someone will feel very guilty about your fall and I assure you it won’t be me.” He grins in an evil way as the color in his eyes flash and Lyla steps back. Reaching his hand out to grab her he says, “I must now bid you farewell.”

“Indeed!” Crispin yells. He rushes at Quinn before he gets his hand on Lyla. Kicking him in the back, this sends Quinn into a stumble and he steps over the ledge, tumbling down into the dark abyss to fall victim to his own sordid ploy. Immediately, Crispin pulls Lyla to him, and holds her firmly as his eyes become tear-filled.

Excerpt 371

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 371) Not So Fast

Lyla does not know which man to trust or which one is the true Crispin. However, now she notices something different in the man who is holding the other down. The swirling in his eyes has stopped as he watches her, focuses on her, almost pleading. Without warning, he is lifted into the air as if by an invisible force, and then slams down on the floor across the room. Now the man he was fighting stands up, wipes his hands off on his pants and immediately turns, quickly heading in Lyla’s direction. Unsure of what she has witnessed and of whom she can believe, Lyla begins to back up then makes a run for the ladder. Just as she places her hand on the rail, she feels his hand on her arm. His fingers are digging into her skin like knives as pain shoots through her muscles.

“Not so fast,” says a voice she recognizes but not as Crispin. She turns and sees the older man who bumped into her table in Madrid and she now remembers him as Quinn. This is the same man who cooked dinner for her and Crispin all those many months ago at the cottage.

“Wha. . . what?” she questions as she stares at him in disbelief. Looking over his shoulder, she sees Crispin lying on the floor, motionless. Stunned, she is void of what to say or how she should react as she looks into Quinn’s menacing eyes. A numb feeling comes over her and once again, she glances over Quinn’s shoulder. This time Crispin is gone.

Excerpt 371

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 370) Stay Away

Lyla knew there was something odd about Crispin tonight. He was his sweet kind self during dinner, just as he was the night before. It is when he came back that something seemed, off. He was distant, darker in his statements and cold in his actions. How can she tell the difference between the two? Has she been dealing with the real Crispin or his twin all along? Suddenly the thunderous rushing sound that came with the wind has started to fade and the house is no longer shaking under the pressure. Lyla watches the two men stay in their position as they try to calm down.

As she moves to stand up she bumps a loose board causing it to make a popping sound and both men look in her direction. Lyla freezes in place for she is now the center of attention. The Crispin on the bottom that is being held down, speaks first.

“Lyla, help me.” He says in a weak voice and she immediately takes a step toward him. His eyes are wild, spinning and flashing as he tries to kick the man on top. Taking another step forward the man on top holds his hand out.

“No Lyla, stay away.” He says with much aggression. The man on the bottom speaks again.

“Lyla, you have to help me!” he says loudly.

“I don’t know what to do!” She replies with nervousness and confusion.

Excerpt 370

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 369) Evenly Matched

The dark mistiness that Lyla has witnessed so many times before is spinning and whirling around both men as they battle each other fiercely. They seem to be evenly matched as they forcefully attempt to bring the other down.

“You have lost your way!” yells one of the men as he lunges forward pressing the other against a large beam of wood nearly snapping his back. With a rush of wind and a roaring sound that builds to such a point that Lyla covers her ears, the man pushes back trapping the other against two beams that cross each other.

His neck is resting between both boards as if he is in a guillotine. With all his might, he holds the man down in this position, pressing on his throat to stifle his breathing. The one on the bottom gasps for air as he grabs the arms of the other.

Lyla can see that both have the strange flickering spinning look to their eyes that she has seen many times, in person and in her visions. How is it that there are two Crispin Duffs? Does he have a twin? Or, has one twined the other?

Excerpt 369

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 368) Like Him

Lyla’s ears fill with a rushing sound, much like a loud waterfall, as she tries to awaken herself from this state. She does not want to see anymore from the past for she now knows Crispin’s intention all along was to kill her. She can now hear some of the sounds going on around her as well as feel the hardness of the wooden floor beneath her.

A strong scent of fresh sawdust fills the air. Voices, she hears voices of men talking, no, yelling. Suddenly she is back to the vision of her and Crispin and as she pushes him away she notices, his eyes fill with tears as he begs and pleads with her.

“Please do not make me do this.” He says softly but then grabs her by the head, pulling her towards him, forcing her eyes open to focus on his.

Again, he pleads for this not to happen. With a loud explosive popping sound, as if a large firework has gone off very near her, Lyla is suddenly alert to her true surroundings. Sitting up she sees the flashlight is still lying on the floor shooting a bright stream of light across the spacious area. To her disbelief, she sees Crispin fighting a man who looks exactly like him.

Excerpt 368

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The Eyes Of A Fetch (Excerpt 367) Images Begin

Lying on the floor, Lyla feels as if the room is spiraling in all directions. Her senses are neither awake nor asleep as she closes her eyes in an attempt to stop the churning and twisting of the things around her. Flashes of images begin to appear to her and she tenses up as they play out in her mind. She is reaching out to tap Marnie on the shoulder but as she turns, she sees that it is Crispin. She backs up through a crowd of people and he follows. As he looks into the eyes of the people around him, his image changes to mirror them.

Suddenly she flashes into another scene, this time she is in the attic crawling backward through the beams. The space around her is as black as night and she cannot see much at all in the glow of the flashlight. She knows Crispin is close behind, following along as if hunting for the pleasure of the chase. His eyes are wild with color as he grabs at her foot pulling her back to him several times.

Her visions show that lightning flickers behind her as she watches Crispin turn into Marcus. She now covers her eyes and begins to cry then hears Crispin’s voice reciting a poem. The same one from the note he gave her last night along with the red tipped white rose. She now feels him kissing her softly.

Abruptly this vision flashes forward showing that she is hiding from him, terrified when he finds her huddled behind the cold bricks of the fireplace. Now she sees him in the moonlight pleading with her to come with him.

“Please stay with me, Lyla.” He says as his lips touch hers, pushing him back, she hears her own voice scream, “No!”

Excerpt 367

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