Journey Into the Deep (Chapter Three, page 1 of 8)

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The Shadow Beckons

We made our way up the coast to Baltimore. It was evening by the time the ship was all squared away in the bustling harbor of the Chesapeake Bay. I headed for shore alone in the dinghy. When I had left I had seen Christina at the railing staring at the wharf in the distance like she was contemplating swimming for it.

Poor girl had been nothing but seasick ever since we had left Charleston. I had almost debated about taking her along with me to shore and giving her some cash so she could make her own way home, but it wasn't my place to do that.

Tough love was one thing, but I hoped that the girl's mother reconsidered the next time about the wisdom of abandoning her child to the mercy of the sea. That was if there would be a next time.

I tied the dinghy off and slung the heavy pack over my shoulder as I stepped up onto the dock. A feeling of foreboding significance haunted my steps, as I made my way up the boardwalk to hail a taxi at a nearby street.

It took a while to escape the congestion of the city to make our way into the more posh suburban neighborhoods at its periphery. The taxi stopped outside of a Georgian style house at the end of a cul-de-sac in one such posh neighborhood.

I gave the taxi driver enough money to wait and got out with the bag in tow. The evening was a noisy one with the sound of cicadas and other insects filling the evening breeze with their cacophony of sound.

I made my way up the paver driveway and then up the walkway that led to the pretentious looking pillared entrance of the house. I knocked heavily on the door and waited. After a moment the door opened to reveal my former brother-in-law, Matthew Reese.

He gazed at me in shock for a moment before pushing the glasses back on the bridge of his nose as he recovered from his shock somewhat. In a dazed tone he asked, "What's it been Eli, three, four years now?"

"Six." I said.

I'd never particularly had an invested relationship with Laura's brother, but he was good at what he did, which was anything to do with the field of archaeology.

He stepped back and held the door open wider and I stepped in. I'd been here once before and while the exterior was the same the interior of the house surprisingly wasn't.

I glanced around surprised at the bare rooms empty of furniture and embellishment. The house appeared as if its contents had already been moved elsewhere. I hadn't pictured Matt as the moving kind.

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