A Tutelarius Love (Chapter Eight, page 1 of 8)


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Megan woke with a start. Had she heard a woman scream? She held her breath, straining to define the night sounds. An owl hooted outside her bedroom window, its eerie call prickling her skin with goose bumps. She waited in tense silence, but heard nothing unusual. Slowly she relaxed. It must have been a dream. Glancing at the iridescent numbers on her alarm clock, she discovered it was only two a.m. She dropped back to her pillow and yawned

The sound caught her by surprise - a blood-curdling scream that could be nothing less than a woman in agonizing pain. In one frantic move, she threw back the covers and darted for the light switch. Her foot became tangled in the bedroll and she sprawled on the floor. Barely noticing the taste of blood on her lip, she kicked the bedroll away and scrambled awkwardly to her feet again. In the dark room, she felt the wall for the light switch. Her fingers closed over the cool plastic, and the room flooded with light. Again the night was silent. She found her flashlight and ran to the front door. What was happening out there? She glanced around the room for something to use in self-defense. The wise thing to do would be to stay in the house, but what about the woman? She couldn't leave her out there with...what? She unlocked the door and turned on the flashlight. Opening the door a crack, she listened to the night. Nothing. She searched the porch for snakes and then stepped outside.

The night ripped in two with another scream, startling her so bad that she dropped the flashlight. The beam of light extinguished and she felt around with trembling hands until she located the flashlight. Turning the light back on, she pointed the beam on the area where the scream seemed to originate. Nothing.

She stood transfixed, afraid to speak for what seemed an hour, but was probably closer to a minute. Slowly she backed through the door and locked it. Would she be next? She ran to the kitchen and searched for a something sharp, settling for a rusty old butcher knife. Oh, for a telephone. Should she try to make a dash for the car? Someone might be waiting outside.

Where was Justin now? She sat down at the table, listening for any sound of movement around the house. Once again she tried the cell phone, with the same results. It was as if this backward country wanted to stay that way. The hours passed without another scream and she was still sitting at the table when the first rays of morning light warmed the kitchen.

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