The past comes calling

monster graffiti on white brick wall

More of Andrew’s story

Nori sat at her sister’s kitchen table fretting with her coffee cup while the hazelnut latte grew tepid.

“Well,” Paula, leaning back against the sink, drew out the single-syllable word. “What did Madam Weronika tell you?”

Taking a sip of her drink, Nori made a face then pushed the cup away. “I’ll admit she was much more accurate in her recitation of my past than I expected.”

“And?” Paula picked up Nori’s cup and emptied the cold latte down the drain before refilling it with steaming coffee.

“Not an And,” Nori said, taking a sip of fresh coffee. “A But.”

“What but?” Paula put creamer and sugar bowls on the table.

Nori poured a generous glug of flavored, dairy substitute into her cup, then stirred in a few heaping spoonfuls of sugar.

“But… her predictions of the future were very cryptic and weird. She said I would help – no, she said I would save – someone named Andrew, That I would find him in a ‘square inside a circle’.” Nori took a long swallow of coffee. “I don’t know anyone named Andrew.”

Paula threw her hands up, a startled look on her face.

“What?” Nori knew that look.

“How could you possibly forget?” Paula shook her head.

“Just say it,” Nori said. “You know how much I hate guessing games.”

“Andrew? Drew?” Paula said the names as if repeating them would shake loose Nori’s memories.

“I still don’t know who you’re….” Nori broke off her sentence. “Drew?”

She covered her mouth, holding in a name she hadn’t spoken in nearly 20 years.

Paula nodded, knowing Nori finally remembered Andrew Ransom.

“I haven’t thought of him in years.” Nori rested her elbows on the table, her chin cupped in her hands. “After Ashley died, and her dad disappeared, I thought for sure Drew was dead too.”

Paula sat down at the table, her head cocked to one side, but didn’t answer.

“Do you think he’s who the fortune-teller meant?” Nori said.

“Norma Elizabeth! Of course, he is.” Paula brought out her big-sister voice. “You were best friends of the girl who was murdered in the most sensational crime this town has ever seen. Her dad was suspect Number One. The cops and press hounded you for months.”

“I guess I locked away all of that bad stuff,” Nori said. “But, a day doesn’t go by that something doesn’t remind me of Ashley. ”

“Did you ever believe her dad planted that bomb?” Paula scooted her chair closer to her younger sister.

“No, never,” Nori said. “He was no monster. He was too excited about Ashley working at his firm. I even thought his crazy wife was the love of his life. He was really happy. I cannot imagine anything that would have turned his life around so much that he’d kill either of them.”

“What do you think happened?” Paula leaned in, almost whispering. “More importantly, what are you going to do now?”

“I don’t know the answer to either of those questions.” Nori said, fishing the necromancer’s business card from her purse. “I guess Madam Weronika is going to tell me.”

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Inspiration: Locked Open

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