Enjoy part two of the Raven’s Omen written for the Daily Post weekly writing challenge, Cliffhanger. http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/01/06/weekly-writing-challenge-cliffhanger/
Continued from Jan. 6th post
“I have a package here for a Corrie Taylor.”
The Crone released a breath she didn’t even realise she was holding, “Yes, that’s me.”
The courier handed over a large envelope, “Sign here please.”
Corrie signed the electronic device he held, smiled a smile that didn’t reached her eyes and thanked the courier before she turned and shut the door. Christ! Jumpy or what! she admonished herself.
The envelope held a contract from the management company that booked all her speaking engagements. This one was for the upcoming year. Her books on intuition, tarot and other new age topics kept her busy on the spiritual speaking circuit. The Crone had worked hard to achieve the level of respect for her skills and wisdom but she decided that when her dream cottage here at Lake Cowichan was finally built, she would scale back her appearances and focus more on doing personal readings instead. A sort of semi-retirement. I’ll look at this contract later she thought and went back to her coffee, now cooling on the kitchen table.
Later that afternoon, while outside watering her own fledgling garden beds, Corrie’s neighbour Jack Fortin phoned and left a message on her answering machine asking if she would mind going over and water the hanging baskets on his deck. Jack was a retired lawyer from Vancouver and judging by his “Better Homes and Garden” estate that resided through a short path connecting the two properties, his career had obviously been a successful one.
Gathering up her watering can, the Crone padded through the shaded tree lined path emerging into sun again at Jack’s property line. His estate had better beach access than hers with a dock big enough to host a party if so desired. Got to get me ones of those before the grandkids came for a visit this summer she thought, admiring the dock. Swooping down into her view and landing on one the decks pylons, the Raven cawed at her once again.
“You are seriously creeping me out Mr. Raven”, she yelled, “What do you want?”
Getting the chore Jack requested done as quickly as possible, Corrie briskly walked back through the path only to come to a full stop midway. Something is not right she thought. There is an ominous energy here. It was the same feeling she had when she held that bracelet the Raven left on her deck.
The Crone was highly attuned to energy, emotions, and other peoples feelings. She was an Intuitive Empath, she had learned long ago to never disregard her gut feelings. Her gut right now was telling her to get back to the safety of her cottage.
Later that evening, Jack called again to confirm Corrie got his message. “Are you all right?”, he asked. “You sound on edge, was everything alright at my place?”
The Crone had only known Jack for a couple of months, he thought she was weird enough as it was so she wasn’t sure how to reply. ” It’s been an interesting sort of day for me that’s all”, she replied. ” I’ll tell you all about it when you get back. When are you getting back by the way?” She thought she might feel more comfortable once her neighbour returned.
“Thursday, are you sure you are OK?”
“Yes, fine, just my spidey senses tingling”, she laughed. “I’ll see you then.
On Thursday afternoon, once again deep in thought, the Crone sat in her study analyzing the contract that was delivered several days before. It seemed the management team was trying to sneak in a few more speaking engagements than what was originally agreed upon.
Bang, Bang , Bang!
“Jesus!”, the Crone jumped. Someone was at her deck door.
Jack Fortin stood with his back to the french doors of Corrie’s deck. Opening it the Crone barked, ” Are you always so forceful, you scared the hell out of me?”
Turning with a grin that reminded her of the cat that got the canary, the tall, powerfully built older man with a full head of heavily salted hair, piercing sapphire blue eyes and impeccable attire, handed Corrie a bakery box. “Brought you back some cinnamon buns from the best bakery in Vancouver.” But his grin quickly turned sour as he continued, ” What the hell have you been putting on your garden beds? It smells like something dead and rotting out here.”
That familiar shiver once again ran down the Crone’s spine. “What are talking about Jack, I haven’t put anything on my garden beds. Come in and I’ll fix us some coffee to go with these cinnamon buns and I’ll tell you about my raven omens.”
Corrie confessed to her neighbour about her “abilities” and then continued on about the raven’s visit and ended with showing him the bracelet. Jack, acting the lawyer that he was, never made judgement on her revelations, just analyzed the evidence. ” I think we should have a walk around our properties.” he finally said. ” I just realized I’ve smelled that smell before.”
Corrie agreed, “We need to check in the treed area between our two places first. I know it may sound strange to you but my gut says that’s were we should start.”
The smell definitely grew stronger as they approached the path. The trees in this area grew right down to the side of the lake and hung over the waters edge.
Looking up, the Crone spotted the Raven hunched high on a branch looking liking a stoic gargoyle perched on the roof of a gothic cathedral, standing guard. “There!” Corrie pointed, “The smell comes from over there.”
Bashing through the underbrush, Jack and Corrie came to the waters edge just below the Raven. The bird never moved.
“Oh my God!” Corrie turned her faced into her neighbours chest. The shiver down her spine ended with what felt like a bolder being dropped into the pit of her stomach. The Crone’s intuition confirmed what her logic also sensed. A body laying under the bush at the waters edge was that of Amber Carmichel, the missing 20 year old from Duncan.
He knew, she thought, he was just trying to tell me. She looked up once more to the branch that had held the Raven to mentally thank him, but he was gone.