It’s dark,Â fog brained, pitch.Â What is that sound??Â Where am I?Â Kell struggled up from sleep, trying to make sense of the messages his brain was sending him.Â He felt around the bedside table next to him and found theÂ lamp and turned it on.Â “Wha….Cassie, baby, what is it?” Cassie was standing in front of the window, arms wrapped around herself, eyes wide open, staring at nothing.Â The sound coming from her made goosebumps on Kell’s arms.
He jump. stumbled to her and tried to put his arms around her but it was like hugging an ice sculpture.Â He spun her around so he could see her face.Â “Cassie, talk to me!Â I’m right here.Â It’s ok!”Â Kell rubbed her arms and touched her face and she slowly closed her eyes and leaned against him, shaking and limp.
“Give me a minute” she said.Â She was ice cold and pale.Â Kell pulled her over to the bed and sat down, still holding her.Â Tears were streaming down her face now.
“Was it him again?”Â Kell asked.
“Yes and you too.Â You looked so…I don’t know, bereft!Â I couldn’t stand it.Â And heÂ was smiling, happy.”Â Cassie cried.Â “I hate him!Â He’s there when I’m awake and shows up when I’m sleeping.Â This time my mother was there too.Â I wish I knew what it means, what he wants!”
“I know.Â So do I.” Kell was rocking her like a child now, holding on to her, warming her.Â Her robe had slipped down off her shoulder and he pulled it back around her.Â The shaking had stopped and her color was coming back.Â He bent his head down to kiss her on the forehead and as he did she turned her face up to him.Â She had stopped crying.
“Do you think you can go back to sleep?Â It’s too early to get up.”Â Kell asked her.
“I think so.Â I’ll try anyway.”Â Cassie answered. “Could you get me a drink of water?”
“Sure, be right back.” Kell said.
Kell went to the kitchen to get her a glass and when he came back, Cassie was already in bed.Â He realized the robe was on the floor.Â She sat up with the sheet wrapped around her and took the glass from him.Â He got in the bed and waited.Â They had been through so much lately, he didn’t want to misunderstand.Â She set the glass on the nightstand and scooted down in the bed till she was laying down face to face with him.Â “I love you”Â she told him.Â “I’m sorry about, well everything.Â I feel like it’s all my fault somehow.”
Kell reached for her and folded her in his arms.Â “If it hadn’t been for you I would have been killed.Â You didn’t ask for this.Â It’s happening to both of us.” He said.
“But maybe if I hadn’t come looking for you, you wouldn’t have been in danger to begin with.” She whispered.
“You can’t know that.Â Maybe the man would have come looking for me and you wouldn’t have been there to warn me. I’m glad you found me .Â We are going to figure this out.”Â he said.Â “Whatever happens we will face it together and someday we will be looking back at all of this and it will be nothing more than a great story to tell.”
As he finished talking, Cassie smiled and kissed him.Â “I want somedays and I’m glad I found you.
This time Kell kissed her and the kiss, at first tentative, grew to more, and they held on to each other and to the love that had come with them through time. For a little while they leftÂ the fear behind and time stopped for them.
Later they talked quietly.Â Kell remembered he meant to ask Cassie about her medallion.Â “You never take it off.Â Where did you get it?”
“It belonged to my mother. Before she died she took it off and gave it to me.Â She had worn it as long as I could remember and she told me to never take it off.”Â she told him.
“It looks familiar to me. I think I’ve seen that symbol before.Â Maybe we could stop by that coffee shop with the internet cafe and search for it tomorrow.Â It feels important somehow. It looks a little like a figure eight”Â he said.
“I never thought about the symbol meaning something.” she told him, shrugging her shoulders.
“What happened to your mother?Â Did she get sick?” Kell asked her.
“No, it was a car accident. She was called in to work on a Saturday and someone ran her off the road.Â I called her job when she didn’t come home and they said they hadn’t seen her.Â I got a neighbor to give me a ride and retraced her regular route.Â If I hadn’t been looking, I wouldn’t have seen her car.Â It was a big drainage ditch and the trees and shrubs around it hadn’t been cleaned out in awhile.”Â she told him. The driver of the other car never stopped.Â She was still conscious when I got to her but she was hurt so bad….. I still miss her.”Â She said.Â “I was seventeen.”
“Cassie, when did you start uh, ‘time traveling’?” Kell asked.
“Not long after that.” she said.