Unforeseen Dives – 40a – Pursuit

<< VIb – A Knife In The Back

Rebecca gradually lulled me back to calm. The tremors of fear receded with each passing second. Never had I been so scared of the Ocean. Diving was in a psychic’s nature, just like walking. We knew the process and trusted it. The revelations diving held surprised us but not the Ocean itself.
This experience destabilized me. Psychics weren’t supposed to communicate with each other. Not without a couple of telepaths present and certainly not through the Ocean. So how had a man not only managed to talk to me but to get a hold on my psychic projection?
I felt violated and sullied but, most of all, I felt like the course of all I knew had been broken. My comprehension of the Ocean changed way more than when the whirlpool first appeared. My core was shaken.
That was probably what wars were all about; scarring every single aspect of people’s life.
When I calmed down, the analysis of the phenomenon began. My mind raced to explain the situation and to read the bad guy beyond his words. Something escaped me. A twist in the intonations, a rhythm in the phrasing, a way to choose the words, I couldn’t nail what, in the distorted voice sounded familiar but I knew the person who threatened me. His identity hovered at the limit of my comprehension and it frustrated me to no end.
“How will we ever win against that monster if he can reach me in the safest places?” I muttered, pushing myself out of the chair. Rebecca, Daniel and James eyed me intently. “I’m sorry.” I hated myself for sounding so defeated. I was a leader in this investigation. If I fell, others would follow. Was I allowing evil to win?
“Don’t apologize.” Daniel said. He laid a paternal hand on my shoulder. “I’d much rather know your true state of mind than have you lie to my face and unexpectedly crumble.”
“What about the team?” I asked James. The criminal would own me right now if the searchers hadn’t pool their talents to help Becky reel me back to reality.
“They’re somewhere between fright and excitement. The presence hasn’t tried to harm anyone else so the team’s mostly curious to find out how the phenomenon happened.”
“Good.”
“We’ll research the residual psychic waves and pull back if he shows up again.” James exited promptly. I smiled. I should have been the one asking them to do that but even if I was calm, I was still afraid. I couldn’t force my team to tackle a challenge I didn’t dare face. I was blessed that James stepped up to lead them.
I motioned to fold the chair back in its space in the wall. The sight of it made me queasy. Rebecca helped me while Daniel headed out. He came back with tea as we closed the panel. We stood while we sipped, both guardian angels watching my every move to make sure I was really okay.
Suddenly, Rebecca’s face lost all its colors. Mine followed suit. Then Daniel’s. The two telepaths knew why they blanched. All I knew was that it couldn’t be good. I stared and bit back my nerves until one of them told me what was happening. The criminal did warn me he would go after my loved ones again.
“They grabbed Casey at work.” Rebecca breathed. I dropped to the ground and spilled tea all over the carpet. My legs simply refused to support me through this. “Wait. They did it wrong.”
I reached to touch my partner and drop in on her mind reading. I instantaneously understood what she meant. Sean’s consciousness had disappeared when he was grabbed, probably because they knocked him out during the abduction and drugged him afterwards. Casey’s panicked loud and clear through the telepathic channel. Either they wanted it that way to scare off other telepaths or they failed to neutralize him as they did with the others before.
Either way, we were gathering information. Lots of information. His thoughts were a jumbled mess and a good part of them were about me. I cried in silence. I had to keep my thoughts to a minimum or my stress would complicate the reading.
Amidst the chaos, we managed to find some useful bits of information.
They were still in Casey’s building. Daniel hurried to the phone to send in the cops. Meanwhile, Rebecca called in our team in reinforcement. We needed as many eyes watching the scene as possible. If we could gather enough information from Casey’s adrenaline-filled mind, we might be able to catch the kidnappers even if they escaped the police.
Through our connection, I heard Rebecca’s hope. She wished Casey safe but, at the same time, she wondered if he might lead us where Sean was held captive. She scolded herself for thinking that but I didn’t blame her. We both wanted our man safe.
Eventually, despite the fog of survival instinct, Casey detected our presence. He continued to physically resist his assailants, all the while organizing his thoughts as best as he could. His newfound control helped us make a bit more sense of what he was going through. He also understood Becky and I lied to him, that we still worked for the government. The revelation pained him but in the urgency of the situation, he skipped over the feeling quickly.
Then, a sharp pain ran along each mental connection. We all winced. Darkness came. Casey had been knocked out.
My brain fired in every direction. Information needed compiling and sketches needed to be drawn. I pulled away from Rebecca but she grabbed my hand. She drew my attention to what the team was doing. A smile shone through my tears.
Casey managed to read his kidnappers’ mind. Non-readers. Our team used that temporary bridge to track down the brainwaves and keep the line open even if Casey was out. We were listening in on everything.
It didn’t matter that the police arrived at Casey’s work a minute late.
We knew where they were going.

40b – Pursuit >>

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About Aheïla

Somewhere in Quebec City, Aheïla works as a Game Design Director by day and writes by night. Known for her blue hair, unyielding dynamism and tasty cooking (quails, anyone?), she’s convinced “prose is the new crack”. She satisfies her addiction daily on The Writeaholic’s Blog and weekly on Games' Bustles View all posts by Aheïla

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