It could have been a hallucination. After all, he was under the influence of a cocktail of pills and drink.
Whatever the nature of the image, it’s meaning was uncertain but the emotions it caused were volatile.
- A young girl with short dirty-blond hair sat paralyzed with tears on the ice rink floor.
- A freshly scraped knee was the center of attention by a man who tried to comfort her.
The scene evaporated and the candle lit room returned to his view.
“What was that?” Ripper mumbled as he rubbed his eyes.
“Thought I’d lost you. What’s with the tune out, mate?” Ethan asked and offered a smoking pipe. Ripper took a moment to focus on the object in Ethan’s hand and grinned as he took it.
“Bugger me! Just had some vague dream or vision, ” he took in a breath of the musky smoke and held it in has if he were under water. Once the familiar wave of dizziness settled in his mind, he released the breath. “Made no bleedin’ sense.” He passed the pipe to the stranger beside him, a girl who seemed much too young to be hanging around such a bunch of hooligans. Most of whom he’d never seen before. Ethan had been trying to convert more street urchins to join in his so-called ‘coven’, which was really nothing more than an avenue for acquiring drugs and participating in orgies.
“Spill it my boy!” Ethan ordered as he lay across the blankets spread across the floor of the abandon building.
Ripper lay down beside him and stared at the cracks in the ceiling. “Nothin’ ta tell. Made no sense.”
“Eloquent as always, Ripper. Your visions tend to have repercussions. Best tell me about it, mate,” Ethan followed Ripper’s example and looked at the ceiling.
“That bloody tart’s showin’ up again. I haven’t a clue who she is…she… it bothers me…to see her.” Ripper noticed a spider creeping along a darkened corner.
“Hey, Ethan. You got more of that shit?” A sickly-thin boy who barely looked seventeen stepped into their view. He swayed above them as he waited for a response.
“Where are you gettin’ these pitiful blokes?” Ripper whispered into Ethan’s ear.
“Think you’ve had enough…uh, Peter was it?” Ethan suggested contemptuously and looked back at Ripper “These types not up to your standards, Ripper?”
“Ronald!” The boy corrected and leaned over Ethan. He revealed a rusty switchblade and waved it treacherously above Ethan’s face. “Give me all ya got, mate!” he hissed.
Ripper rolled his eyes. ‘Will these pillocks ever learn?’
Ethan ignored the boy and continued, “She bothers you? How? I need the specifics here.”
Ronald straddled over Ethan and put the knife to his throat. “Give me the shit now!”
“Pardon me for a moment,” Ethan said all proper like to Ripper and looked up at the incensed boy.
“Malcorm tru maythum,” he said the spell and punctuated it with a flourish of his hand. Ronald jerked upright and his eyes widened as the knife dropped out of his hand. Ethan had just rolled out of the way as the blade buried into the rotted wood floor. The sickly boy began to scream and scratch at his arms.
“Get ’em off,” he tore at his exposed flesh, “God…help me!” he ran out of the room. Everyone else in the place jumped to attention and ran after the wild boy, leaving Ethan and Ripper alone in the room.
Ethan rolled back toward Ripper and casually removed the knife. “So…bothers ‘eh? She getting’ a rise outta you?”
“She’s a child you rank tadger! I don’t even know her. She makes me…I don’t know,” he staggered to his feet and moved to the boarded up window. He peeked out at the rain. “Bloody weather. Someday I’ll slum-it where there’s nothin but sun.”
Ethan sensed Ripper’s seriousness. He got up and closed what was left of the battered door to the room. He joined him at the window and wrapped his arm around Ripper’s shoulders.
“What are you feeling when you see this child? Why does it bother you so?”
“I feel…protective. Possessive, like she’s mine or something?” he saw Ronald run by the window screaming and being chased by a crowd.
“Like she’s your child?” Ethan never had visions of children, perhaps because he never intended to father any.
“No. I think I see her parents in the visions. She’s always by them.” He lit a cigarette, walked away from the window and lay back down on the blankets. “I don’t understand. Why do I care about her if she isn’t my kid? I see kids…real kids, everyday and don’t feel the same way I do about this stranger in my vision.”
“Perhaps this vision is of things to come. I mean…things to come years from now.” Ethan’s smile reassured him, ” It will become clearer in time.” Ethan felt like he was a puppy following around his master, ridiculously following Ripper around the room; but he couldn’t help but join him back on the blanket. Ripper was his only weakness, but a welcome one.
“It better,” Ripper sighed and closed his eyes, “It’s driving be balmy, mate.”
Ethan softly caressed Ripper’s hair. “You need sleep, my friend.”
Ripper settled his head on Ethan’s outstretched arm. “I’ve made a right balls-up of my life.”
“I sense greater things for you Ripper,” he whispered. “I’ll steer ya right.” Ethan continued to run his fingertips through Rippers curls, soothing him to sleep.
- The young blond girl buried herself under her blankets. A stuffed animal pig (Mr. Gordo…how did he know it’s name?) was close at hand; ready to console her from the raised voices of her parents. Tears drenched her cheeks and she sobbed into her pillow.
- His heart reached out to her, she was in such pain. He sat down on the bed and uncovered the child. She looked up at him wide eyed and smiled. Her small arms wrapped eagerly around him and she buried her face into his chest. A calm overtook him. Though he didn’t understand why, he knew this fragile girl was his to protect; he felt it. Every instinct of his being drew him to her.
- Something moved in the dark corner of the room. Dozens of pairs of flaming yellow eyes appeared in the darkness. He held the child tighter and willed the darkness to pass. In a moment, the eyes disappeared. He took in a deep relieved breath and looked down at the girl. She smiled up at her protector and noticed the mark of Eyghon tattoo on his arm. Her delicate fingers traced the symbol and she frowned. The adorable crinkle of curiosity in her nose distorted and her features corrupted into a horrific demon. Claws buried into his back and her lips parted to reveal fangs that went for his throat.
Ripper was startled awake from the vision. He sat up soaked with sweat and shivering uncontrollably.
“Bloody hell! Not again mate.” Ethan sat up and rubbed the sleep from his eyes.”You’re having these every fuckin’ day now.”
“I’m coming apart. I-I don’t understand what these f-fuckin visions are tryin to tell me.” Ripper stood up and began to pace wildly around the room. “Who is this tart that I can’t get out of my fucking mind,” he slammed a fist violently into he side of his head, ” Ethan…I t-think I’m cracking up here mate.” Ripper looked down at his tattoo and froze. Little speckles of blood began to freckle along the symbol.
“Ethan…can you see this?” he rushed over to Ethan and held out his scarred arm. He only saw the usual track marks and bruises.
“I see it…Ripper, calm down,” Ethan took hold of his arm and examined the marks closely.
“Ripper…” He ignored him and continued to tremble violently.
“Rupert!” Ethan took hold of his head and held it steady, trying to focus Ripper’s eyes.
“You’re just on a bad trip. You’ll be fine when you come down. I’ll talk you through it.”
He guided his hysterical friend back to the blankets and removed his drenched shirt.
“You’ll catch your death if we don’t get you warmed up. You’re all cold sweats and shaky.” Ethan began to unzip Ripper’s jeans.
“Not now you randy perve. I’m loosing my mind.” Ripper brushed his hands away.
“Trust me you pillock. I’m trying to help you calm down…” Ethan continued to undress him, ” and you need to get warmed up. These wet clothes aren’t helping. Get beneath the blankets.” He ordered.
Ripper could barely control his tremors as he took refuge under the blanket. Ethan stripped completely and joined Ripper under the blanket. Ripper turned away but felt comforted when Ethan’s body slid up to his backside. There was an immediate wave of heat when Ethan wrapped his arms around his waist.
“Don’t mind me, Ripper.” Ethan whispered in his ear. “Just relax. Need to warm you up. Just…calm down.” Ethan glided his hand up and down Ripper’s quivering chest. His old friends’ attention began to settle his nerves and warm him up.
“T-Thanks,” he stuttered.
“No bother…I’m enjoying this as much as you,” Ethan nuzzled his chin into the back of Rippers neck.
Ripper had known Ethan’s intentions before he did.
“Uh…I appreciate this, really. But I don’t think…”
“Then don’t!” Ethan concluded and moved his strokes lower until his hand rested on Ripper’s groin.
His will evaporated as a wave of arousal took him, he needed more of Ethan’s special attention. He couldn’t stop himself from guiding Ethan’s motions into a quickened pace.
Ripper could feel Ethan press against his backside but he didn’t care. His ministrations were serving to take his mind off the visions. He allowed his mind to wander as Ethan continued his exploration.
- A breathlessly beautiful young woman lay before him. She caressed his chin and kissed him delicately on the lips. He stared into her welcoming eyes. Her fingers tickled along his erection and he pressed into her eager hands. She smelled of strawberries and the breeze moved her golden hair to danced across her supple breasts. He had to taste them.
- Though a stranger, he knew her. She was foreign to him yet he felt complete with her. Passion overtook him and his soul was hers to command.
- He rolled on top of her and guided her legs apart with his. She spread for him and kissed his nipples as he pulled her warmth to him. She gasped as he slowly entered her. He paused at the sound…had he hurt her? A subtle moan escaped her lips as he pressed once again into her. He felt a shiver crawl up his spine as she lifted her hips to meet his with each thrust. The tempo increased and soon his body was at the brink…crying out for release. She stopped with a wicked smile and in one swift motion, rolled him onto his back with her mounting him. He’d lost control, he was stunned. She pinned his arms to his sides and leaned over to cover his body with her own. She whispered only one word into his ear, “Watcher.”
Ripper was torn back to reality. He forced himself away from Ethan and began collecting his clothes.
“I knew I was good but what the hell Ripper?” Ethan sat up confused.
Ripper ignored his aroused friend and began to throw some personal items in his duffle bag.
“What? Where…what are you doing? Ripper talk to me.” Ethan hastily dressed himself and followed Ripper anxiously around the room. He finally demanded answers and grabbed his friends arm, “Where do you think you’re going, mate?”
Ripper turned to face him and forced his arm free with a furious defiance. Ethan thought he was about to be on the bad end of a famous Ripper jab but was pleasantly surprised when his old friend kissed him full on the lips. Ripper stroked his cheek and guided an unmanageable clump of hair from Ethan’s eyes.
“Please, Rupert…where are you going?” Ethan was afraid of the answer.
“Home!” he said with a smile, “I have a bit of research to do in my fathers study,” and he strutted out the door to start a new life.