This is chapter 32 of The Inheritance, a serial fiction novel on FITK
Wednesday Evening, July 29th, Seattle
“You’ll never guess who I talked with at Pike Place today,” Jo said to Mary as they cleared up the remains of the dinner.
“Erm… ” stammered Mary, “You’re right. Things are so crazy these days that I wouldn’t be surprised if old Beelzebub himself came waltzing up. I give up.”
“No, it wasn’t the president… It was Marcel DuPage!”
“I take it that this meeting wasn’t your idea.”
“No, I was just having a latte outside of Ghost Alley when he came over and started to chat me up.”
“I hope you were careful,” said Mary, “He’s quite the charmer. Did he start talking about Emily?”
“Emily, yes, he did bring her up,” said Jo, “He recognized me, I had my mask down in order to drink my latte, and was trying to get information about her.”
“What did you tell him?”
“He showed me those pictures, of you and Sean with her, and I told him that was before I really got to know you and Sean, which is true. I didn’t encourage him to talk about Emily. After this went on awhile I got the sense that he was just a lonely old man who wouldn’t let go of his dream.”
“Emily told me that the night they spent together was pretty intense, she evidently knew some powerful love magic,“ Mary said, as she wiped her hands, “He didn’t try to hit on you, did he?”
“Nah, he is still hung up on Emily. When I suggested that he and Barbara Merrit were wasting their time he got rather huffy and stormed off.”
At that moment Sean and Mareka came back into the kitchen.
“What about Emily?” said Mareka.
Jo shot a glance at Mary.
“We’ve told Mareka about Emily’s time with us, Jo,” said Mary, “Mareka, we were talking about the time we went dancing with Emily and she met a man and they were friends for a little while. Emily left us a short time after that. There have been pictures of that night on the internet. The man Emily met talked to Jo yesterday; he still wants to find Emily.”
“But that’s impossible, right?” said Mareka, “You said that Emily left again and joined the spirit world.”
“Yes, all this happened before you were born. It is part of the family secret, like those things we were talking about in the hot tub,” Mary paused. “If we told the true story, no sane person would believe it. The problem is that there are a lot of crazy people out there, people who would believe anything. We don’t want to encourage them. They could become dangerous.”
“Uh, OK, I think I understand,” said Mareka, “Who is this guy?”
“His name is Marcel DuPage, he is something of an odd duck. He wears fancy clothes that are kind of old-fashioned, like the ones we saw in those black and white movies that we watched during the lock down,” said Jo, “He’s probably harmless by himself, but he is working with a woman—a reporter—who has been writing untrue things about your parents and me.”
“I wish I could talk to Emily,” said Mareka, “I don’t know that much about her.”
They all stood in silence for a minute. Finally, Sean spoke up:
“I’ve gotten an offer from my agent for another book on Emily’s unpublished work,” said Sean, “Perhaps you can help us sort through them, Mareka. Looking at them might make things clearer for you. Some of them are drawings from the time she lived in New York City, you'll be able to see what she saw when see was living there. Some are what she called her ‘spirit paintings’. Those can be scary, but I think Emily will be able to ‘speak’ to you through them.”
“I think I’d like that,” said Mareka, “When?”
“I’ll set up some big tables in the garage tomorrow. I’ll make them from the crates the canvases were shipped in. There are a lot of them.”
“Oh, child, what are we going to do with you?” sighed Mary, “You’re growing up so fast.”
Thursday Morning, July 30, Seattle
Special agent Robert Marchal FBI Agent was on the phone with his counterpart in Phoenix.
“Hi Bob, Ed Ganley here,” he began, “Just calling with a follow up on the Stevenson case.”
“Thanks for keeping me in the loop, Ed.”
“Well, don’t thank me yet, ” said Ganley, “I just got a visit from Homeland Security.”
“I think I know where this is going,” said Marchal, “They took all the evidence and files and put a gag order on it, right?”
“I’m not going to ask you to tell me anything more, due to the gag order. No use in hanging on the line if the Russians are involved.”
Marchal hung up as well. Although he couldn’t discuss the witch riot or Stevenson’s murder, he could do some ‘fishing’ in the ‘Russian waters’ in Seattle.
Next chapter: Khorosho Horror Show