Doors To Mirrors (Excerpt 148) Skill

In the cottage, next to the fire, Viktor sits on the floor patiently waiting. He has no way of communicating now that his phone is gone. He is a firm believer it is at the bottom of the lake, which is where he would have been had that small ledge not been there.

“So, the sun is setting and I’m here in a house I broke into.” Viktor says to himself. “But I have wine, now all I need is some company.” He looks at the fire and with a thin stick, pokes at the red embers on the side of the log.

He has not turned on any lights and with boredom setting into his normally over active brain, he finds himself becoming fidgety. Standing up, he glances around at the items in the room. The deep colored sofa with its wooden details and throw pillows looks inviting but he dare not sit down. With all the traveling and moving about that has taken place today, he feels tired and knows within minutes he could easily be asleep.

“Yeah, that would be great. Fall asleep and Nadja walks in thinking I’m some parasite looking for a place to be a slug.” Viktor shakes his head at the thought of making that first impression. “Now I’m kind of wondering if she is truly living here.” He comments to himself. “My luck she probably stays in town and only comes here once in a while to make sure the place is still standing.” Viktor looks at the photograph of Nadja and her aunt. “I’m pretty sure I’m getting nervous, it feels like something is getting ready to happen.”

Walking to the front window he stares out at the darkening landscape wondering how long this night will last if he ends up here alone.

“Damn, I can’t believe I lost my phone.” He mumbles as he turns away from the glass and walks over to the fireplace. “I better keep you full, you hungry flame.” He comments as he places another large log on the toasty fire.

Standing there in silence, he can hear the rushing water as it gurgles down from the roof through the downspouts. The rain is heavy which creates a static type of sound, like a television that cannot tune into channels. A steady tapping sound is coming from the kitchen which he is positive is a leak. He turns on the light as he enters the room, and sure enough, in the right hand corner near the bathroom, is a small puddle splashing water with each drip from the ceiling.

“Let’s see. . . if I were a bucket where would I be?” He questions as he reaches for the cabinet door that is under the sink. “Ah ha, perfect.” He states as he picks up a purple bucket and grabs the dish towel from the counter.

Tossing the towel down onto the floor, he rubs it around with his foot to soak up the water that has splattered there. Quickly he places the bucket in the area, catching the next drip that falls from the ceiling.

“Skill, I’ve definitely got skill.” He grins.

At the sink, he wrings water out of the towel, folds it over a few times until it forms a square, and leaves it near the faucet. Suddenly, he hears rattling at the front door and before he can turn around, the door opens and the scent of rain fills the cottage.


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