Jivaja: Chapter Eleven – Part Two

 

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Welcome to Free Fiction Friday! Every week, I’ll be posting a scene or two (in order, of course!) from my book, Jivaja. If you want to read along, just come on back every Friday!

Some scenes will be shorter, several hundred words. Some will be a thousand or more. Read them in order though, otherwise none of this will make sense!

Follow along as Mecca, a young woman with a Gift for manipulating human life force, runs head-first into a shadowy vampire-like society that discovers her power and wants to use her.

If you missed any parts, head over to the Jivaja Table of Contents to get caught up!

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Chapter Eleven – David, Part Two

 

David jerked awake and bolted straight up, a scream on his lips.

At the edge of the bed, Sara jumped a step back and put her hand on her chest. “Jesus Christ! Are you okay?”

David barely had the presence of mind to nod as he fought the panic that brought an acid taste up from his belly. Adrenaline pumped through him. “I’m sorry.”

“No, it’s cool. You just scared the shit out of me, is all. You okay? That must have been one bad-ass nightmare.”

He nodded as he fought to get his breathing and heart rate under control. He pushed aside the details of the dream. He didn’t want to analyze it.

“Well,” she continued, “I came to wake you up because the prog came through. You’re in.”

“Thanks.” The panic began to recede, but he couldn’t concentrate on the good news Sara brought. “I’ll be down in a couple of minutes.”

“Okay. I went out to the Brew and got some muffins while you were asleep. I had a taste for something sweet and they’ve got the best orange cranberry muffins. I’ll be in the basement when you’re ready.”

He sat on the bed for several minutes after she left, breathing deeply as he regained some control. When he felt he could walk, he went across the hall to the bathroom. He immersed himself in the mundane tasks of relieving himself and cleaning up.

In the mirror, dull, washed-out blue eyes looked back at him. If he could just find Mecca, they could disappear and become different people. David had the paperwork hidden away in a safe deposit box. It would only be a matter of signing a few bank accounts over to a holding company before transferring them to a different identity and then updating the paperwork with current photos.

He splashed water on his face. In the movies, that always seemed the thing to do in a bathroom, but it really only made a mess. He reached for the towel on the rack, but drew back.

The red of the towel brought the horror of his dream. David pushed the memory aside, snatched the towel and wiped up the spilled water. Ignoring his haggard reflection now, he left the bathroom.

The living room was quiet when he trudged down the stairs. The basement door stood ajar, warm light seeping around the edges. He thought about the cracked hard drive waiting for him down there, and the dark cloud of his mood lifted enough to let him hope.

Sara sat at the second, smaller, desk, typing on the keyboard. She looked up when he entered and treated him to a smile.

“Feeling any better?”

When he shrugged, she motioned to the counter along the back wall. The black sludge in the coffee pot had been cleaned out and a fresh pot steamed on the hot plate. A mug about the size of a soup bowl sat beside a small plate with three muffins.

“Coffee will help. At least it always helps me when I have nightmares.” She brushed a hand through her short, dark hair. “I didn’t start looking through the drive, by the way. I figured you’d want to do it yourself.”

“Thanks.” David poured the steaming, black liquid into the mug and thanked fate that Sara had grown up to be so resourceful. He held the cup with both hands and let the warmth settle into his fingers, glad to see that his hands didn’t shake. The hickory-tinged aroma settled his nerves.

He moved to the unoccupied chair and swiveled so he could face her. “Sorry I scared you.”

“It happens. At least you know it’s a nightmare and not real. That’s the plus side of waking up screaming.”

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Theoretically. But he said, “I suppose there is that, yes.” He spent a moment wondering why She would wake up screaming.

Sara nodded at one of the monitors on the wall over the larger desk. It held a Windows environment with shortcuts for typical business and internet programs. “There it is. Just go through it like you would a normal desktop. E-mail’s there. Files are there. Let me know if you need help, yeah?”

David found himself struck by her goodness and couldn’t speak for a moment. He coughed, to clear the frog from his throat, as he rolled his chair over. “Thank you.”

She only smiled and turned back to her own monitor. The smooth voice of Nat King Cole crept into the room from unseen speakers. A surprising choice of music given her age, he thought, but he found himself glad of the soft sounds. He sipped the rich, black coffee and took a deep breath before tackling the computer.

The time on the screen read 5:48 p.m.


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