“Okay, it’s worse than crazy but I shouldn’t freak out?” Gillian gave a nervous chuckle and rolled her eyes.
“It might be nothing.” Billy answered. “But I’ll explain it all when we get together with Kim and the detective. One of my colleagues from the university came with me and he can help so try not to worry, Jilly.”
As if on cue, Bill’s cell phone rang. On the other end, Kim relayed a message from Detective McDonald. They were all going to meet at the morgue around noon, assuming another body wasn’t discovered.
“We’ll be there!” said Bill.
While they waited for noon, Gillian paced. Finally, Billy caught her arm and pulled her onto the sofa.
“Okay, maybe you can’t wait until we’re all together. The truth is, I think you made contact with a spirit and when you didn’t say ‘goodbye’ it crossed over into our realm. Now, I don’t believe it can actually hurt you but what you believe makes all the difference.”
Stern-faced and resolved, Gillian raked a trembling hand through her hair. Outwardly, she appeared to wave it off without a care but inside, she could feel the presence of a dark spirit watching her every move.
At noon, everyone assembled in Kim’s morgue. Dr. Tynesdale, still giddy with the extensive data he’d received, expounded on earlier theories and hypotheses on the symbolism of the ancient runes carved/branded into the corpses after their demise. Not in the mood for chit-chat, Angela interrupted his pondering. Too many of her friends were directly impacted; there was no time to waste.
“No offense, Doctor, but we need real answers not hypotheticals. Can you decode whatever the symbol is, or not?”
“Why, of course, my dear.” Tynesdale replied. “I was just explaining the progression, that’s all. The fascinating part is yet to come.”
Detective McDonald rolled her eyes. A voice in the back of her mind said, this bumbling idiot wouldn’t know a rune from graffiti. The thought both delighted and angered her thought she didn’t understand why.
“You see, we were so focused on whether the symbols were Old Norse or Anglo Saxon that we almost missed the cipher in your friend Seth’s books. It wasn’t either … it was a mark of his own design in a book prior to Specter of Death. Thank heavens one of my grad students is a complete and utter suck up. Once she found out I needed some research she picked up every one of Seth’s books and has been scouring them ever since. Now, let me see … I had it right here.”
Kim choked back the urge to scream, “Get on with it!” After spending the entire morning with Dr. Tynesdale, she knew if anyone tried to rush him, he’d get flustered. Then it would take twice as long to extract the information. It’s like pulling teeth.