CAGE OF LIFE PART FOUR
SETTING: SAN FRANCISCO 1982
SYNOPSIS: PROFESSOR DAVID WILKES ENCOUNTERS AN EXPERIENCE HE NEVER EXPECTED.
WORDS PART FOUR 939
FROM PART THREE
David turned, stared at the building, but said nothing.
“If the arrangement is not convenient, then please give me a time and place that is, Mr. Wilkes.”
David continued to stare at the building. “No, no. Your apartment will be fine.” He looked at Genea. “You don’t object to company?”
“No. I wish you relaxed and secure as possible so no doubts will linger concerning my abilities. At what time may I expect you, Mr. Wilkes?”
David rubbed his chin. “Would seven tonight be convenient?”
Yes. “My apartment is on the third floor. Address Three A. Until this evening, Mr. Wilkes.”
WORDS PART FOUR 939
David knocked on the apartment door. He looked at his wife, then his friends. “This should prove interesting. I can’t wait to expose her as a fraud.”
From the other side of the door came Genea’s soft voice. “Please come in, Mr. Wilkes.”
David, his wife, and the Ruiz’s entered the apartment. He was surprised. The apartment wasn’t what he expected. It was clean, neat and modestly furnished. He looked at his wife, her slight smile telling him she felt the same.
“Please sit and make yourself comfortable. There are several magazines if you wish to read while you wait. I shall be with Mr. Wilkes for no more than five minutes.”
Pleasantries over, Genea, followed by David excused themselves and retired to the kitchen.
Sitting across from one another, Genea studied David’s face. “Your aura is strong, Mr. Wilkes. It should prove a most interesting session…for both of us.”
David raised he right brow. “You didn’t mention you could see auras. What else should I know about you before we begin?”
“Only that you have nothing to fear from me. I see only what was and will be.” Genea’s look intensified but did not threaten.
Damn, what is it about her I’m missing? “So where do we begin, my childhood, my adolescence or do we go directly into the future where you reveal my trials and tribulations?”
Genea smiled. “Nothing so dramatic, Mr. Wilkes. If you do not object, I wish to feel your passion for life, to feel the unrestricted ecstasy you experience as you enjoy your mortality to the fullest.”
An icy finger ran down David’s spine. Mortality? Why would she say that? This is becoming damned strange. “And you can do all this by merely touching my hand?”
“Yes. As I said before, I have had this ability since early childhood, but not in the manner you think. Simply put, I am able to see your experiences, Mr. Wilkes.” She paused, a pained look on her face. “How can I explain this? The satisfaction I receive as I reveal your memories allows me to feel, almost relive, in varying degrees, all your experiences.”
“Interesting. I’d say that makes you a physic voyeur, no?” He sat back in his chair and studied Genea’s face.
Genea laughed softly but said nothing, the voices inside her mind conveying alarm. He is to drink the tea! We must have life force, his energies tonight! We must feed. Do not fail, old one, or…. Genea understood fully what the word ‘or’ meant.
“Is something wrong?”
“No, just drifting thoughts, Mr. Wilkes.” She covered her mouth and coughed. “Before we begin would you like a cup of herbal tea? It will allow us derive the most from the reading.”
David nodded, “Yes, that would be nice.”
David had no sooner placed the empty cup on the table then he felt Genea’s force enter his mind. Unhindered, it glided through David’s remembrances, delicately peeling back each protective layer to expose his deepest memories.
Powerless to stop her, Genea roamed freely through David’s mind, exploring the minuteness of details until a gray shadow materialized before her.
David could only observe its movements. For a brief moment, he saw a face; oblong with large round grey eyes above a delicate nose and a small lipless mouth before it vanished. Genea’s soft, plying voice touched him. Once I leave your mind you will remember nothing of this Mr. Wilkes. You will tell all that you were correct concerning me. Later tonight you will step out in front of a car before the gates of Chinatown. She paused. Please forgive me, Mr. Wilkes. I must deliver you or they will take my immortality from me. I must go less they hear me. Awake and go about your night’s activities.
David opened his eyes and stared at Genea. “It’s as I thought. You are a fraud. I told you I would find out.”
“Yes, Mr. Wilkes, I am. Please do not tell anyone, I beg of you.”
“I won’t have to. If I can see you’re a charlatan, then others will as well. I bid you good night, fortune teller.”
David entered the living room and looked at his wife. “She’s what I suspected all along, she’s running a sophisticated scam. Let’s get out of here and enjoy the nightlife.”
At 11:42 p.m. David stepped off the curb into the path of a turning car and was knocked unconscious.
We are Sacai, imprisoned on this miserable planet before your species discovered fire. Humans know us as harpy, succubus, jiin, banshee, wraith.
What do you want with me?
To survive. Once we were many, but now we are few in number. Your life force will feed us, sustain us.
You want my soul?
No. We need your memories to live.
Nooo…not my memories.
A face materialized within David’s mind followed by five more.
I will fight you!
Non-sequitar. You are powerless.
Nooo, please I beg you. I can’t live without knowing who or what I am.
The brooding faces melted into one. Irrelevant. We begin.
Within his mind, David screamed, searing pain shredding his memories like gossamer in a strong wind. Stop, please. The pain. Nooo not my parent’s image. Nooo!
No one in the hospital expected. Unresponsive, they said David had lapsed into a deep coma.
David endured until November twenty third.
Born in 1659 — kept alive by the Sacai to fill their larder — Genea knew what had transpired. She thanked her Masters. Her life, her immortality would continue for having secured another cage of life.
On November twenty forth the sun burned off the morning fog, the sky above San Francisco a cloudless blue. Below, as she has done for countless years, Genea opened her stall for business, waiting for another David Wilkes to come to her.
© 2017, Raymond Tobaygo. All rights reserved.
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