Deidre was clearing dishes from dinner and talking with her Aunt. “Do you think if you joined the circle tomorrow you could help them finish removing the block sooner? I would like to know if there is any more information I can get from Charles. I have a lot of pieces but nothing working together just yet.”
“I don’t think it would be a good idea. Charles hasn’t said much about it, but I can feel the strain he is experiencing. If it weren’t for the missing family that might be tied to this memory I would actually be suggesting that we take a longer break before the next session. He is having a hard time processing the information he is receiving. He’s had to deal with a lot over the past few months. First that he was a thief with no memory of the theft, then with the possibility that someone took control of his mind and made him do something without his knowledge, just when he was starting to accept that had happened he was hit with the recovery of the dream showing that it was all him. And that not only had he stolen the items but that he had blocked his own memory of it. And now he is back to wondering if there is still a possibility of someone else having forced him in to the theft. And then today he had the fleeting worry that he might have had something to do with that family disappearing. It was brief but strong enough that all four of the Prophets in the room heard him think it.”
“Why would he think that? I never suggested that he had anything to do with that.”
“Wouldn’t it be logical? He knows he took those items but has no memory of what he did with them. Now they’ve turned up in the house of a family that is gone. He has no memory of the theft. What if he has no memory of doing something to that family?”
“Well I should let him know tomorrow that there is no way he could be responsible for their disappearance. They were fine up until a few weeks ago. He’s been under surveillance since his release in to our custody so there is no possible way he could have gone anywhere near them.”
“I will find a way to work that into conversation if you don’t mind. I would rather he didn’t know he was broadcasting his thoughts so loudly. Right now he is feeling very fragile and the last thing I want him to worry about is the sanctity of his personal thoughts.”
“Okay, so how about if we don’t try to move the process faster but you join the circle just to have an extra witness, someone else who can read him and see if there is something that we have missed?”
“No. Absolutely not. He’s already sharing his consciousness with three people. Fitting a fourth in there? It would be too much. I think after we close this case I will recommend if we ever face a situation like this again that we try to use only two directly in contact. Keep the third as the gateway but not actually entering the mind. I think the strain on Charles as well as Greg is too high.”
“On Greg? Why are you worried about Greg?”
“Greg is the gateway for the other two. He is linking with Charles, but then along with that link he is allowing the other two to use his link as a pathway. So he is holding open the door while acting as the door at the same time. It’s a tremendous amount of concentration and I believe he will need a good amount of time to himself when this is all over to rest. When he said his wife was driving him to and from sessions? That was true, but not completely accurate. She’s driving him everywhere right now. She called me and asked how soon we would be done. He’s exhausted.”
“Okay, so we wait. Frankly I’m not sure it matters anyway. If all we are going to see is that the dream is shifting and he experienced nothing but a normal night’s sleep from that point forward there are no more clues to find. It’s just frustrating to know there is something there but not be able to see it.”
“I know.” Aunt Dot turned her head and listened, “Who is Aska singing to?”
“Oh, no one. She’s taken to singing in her sleep a few nights a week. I woke her the first time I heard it but she sleeps right through now.”
Dot held a hand up to Deidre and put a finger to her lips while she listened again. “She’s not alone.”
Without hesitation Deidre ran down the hall to Aska’s room but when she got to the door she saw her daughter laying in bed sound asleep singing to herself. She turned to say something to her Aunt when Dot pushed her out of the way and walked in to the room. Dot put her hands on Aska’s sleeping body and stayed very still. Deidre felt the hairs on her arms raise and knew that her Aunt was reading Aska as she slept. Aska stopped singing and woke with a start sitting straight up in bed. “Aunt Dot? Were you just in my dream?”
“I was,child, I was. Do you remember anything else about it? Where we were for instance?”
Aska yawned, “Umm, in a house. I was babysitting, I think. I was singing a lullaby right? I don’t remember for sure, ummm…I was singing to, a little girl, I think? And then you were there and then I woke up. Why were you there?”
“We can talk about it tomorrow, for now do you think you can get back to sleep? I need to talk to your mother about something. And tomorrow you and I will have a lot to talk about as well.”
“Yeah, I think so. Night, Aunt Dot.” Aska’s mother and Great Aunt sat in her room with her until they heard her breathing deepen and become regular as she drifted back off to sleep.
Dot and Deidre went back out to the living room. “What was all that?”
Dot said, “We need to talk to Aska in the morning, and you need to weigh in as well as she is a minor, but I would like to have Deborah read her dreams for the past few weeks. I think we might have another lead on your missing family.”
“When I heard Aska singing I could feel the person she was singing to. She wasn’t alone in her room. I’m not an expert on dream readings the way Deborah is, so I will want her help tomorrow, but I know that there was someone else with Aska in that room. But just in her thoughts. When I read her I could see a little girl laying in bed trying to get to sleep. But it wasn’t just a dream, Aska was singing to an actual child. I could feel her, and she’s lonely. I think that’s why Aska is finding her in her dreams, Aska is highly advanced in her gift and empathy is one of her strongest pieces. I think this child was calling out and she heard her. But as I reached to find more about the child I was pushed out.”
“Pushed out? You?” Deidre had never heard of anyone being able to move her Aunt out of a mind. You could make it more difficult for her, have blocks in place but the most you could be assured of was just being aware she was reading you. Actually preventing her from reading you? This was unheard of.
“Yes, I was pushed. Someone didn’t want me to get a closer look at the child, or the room they were in. But from what I saw, I think it was the youngest Jameson child. You said Aska has been singing for a few weeks, maybe Deborah will be able to see more and give us an idea where they might be.”
“The first time I heard Aska singing and she woke up she told me that ‘She was just lonely and wanted a friend,’ I figured it was all part of a dream. Aska has been signing to an actual child?”
“Yes, I believe so. I am going to sit with her while she sleeps, I don’t think she will be contacted again tonight, who ever pushed me out would be too worried about being seen again, I believe, but I think we would both feel better if we watched over her tonight.”
“Thank you. When Joy gets home I will send her in to talk to you. She might be able to help. Now I need to call Captain Taylor and try to explain that I think my daughter’s dreams might help lead us to the Jameson family.”
The rest of the night passed without event and the next day Deborah and Captain Taylor met Deidre, Dot and Aska at their house. Aska gave permission for Deborah to read her dreams and was actually excited by the idea of it all. To think she might be able to help her mother with an important case was pretty thrilling. She had also made the deal with Deborah and her mother that after it was all finished she could ask Deborah any questions about dream reading that she had. Neither of her aunts was particularly skilled in this area and Aska had not had the chance to talk about how it was done before. Deborah felt that was a fair arrangement since Aska was giving full access to her dreams in exchange.
Deborah would be reading Aska with Joy, Dot and Deidre observing. Captain Taylor decided to stay and wait while the reading occurred even though he would be able to see and feel nothing during the process. But he wanted to be able to confer with Deidre as soon as they were finished. He wasn’t entirely sure that this would bring any information about his case, the dreams of a child about another child, this wasn’t his area, but he knew that Deidre felt it was important and over the years he had grown to trust his counterpart on The Guard.
“Okay, Aska, all you need to do is relax. I’m going to place my hands on yours if you feel like breaking the session you just pull your hands away from mine, okay?”
“Okay.” Aska held her hands out palms facing up and Deborah covered them with her own. They both began breathing slowly together, much like a shared meditation.
John felt a prickle in the air, like a static charge and turned to look at Deidre. She smiled and him and nodded. Well how about that, he had actually felt the magic.
As Deborah entered Aska’s consciousness she began by looking at the most recent dream memory. She could hear Aska singing and…
Deborah abruptly pulled out of the session. “The singing.”
Deidre leaned forward, “Yes, she sings to the child.”
“No, the singing, this is the singing from Charles’ dream. Remember before he left with his list we heard singing in his dream. This is the singing. I’m almost positive. Aska, I’m sorry for breaking the connection so abruptly but I think this is important. I think we should go back to that point in Charles’ dream and see if we can find a link to Aska, or to the child. Maybe we can see who else was there.”
Dot stood, “I will get the rest together and we can leave for the station after this is over, we had a session scheduled for later today anyway. Deborah, will you be up for working with Charles after this?”
“Yes, I believe so, I’m not removing anything here, it’s just simply reading. It’s not as strenuous at all. Aska, may we try again?”
“Sure.” Aska held out her hands and they started again.
Deborah and Aska sat together for almost 20 minutes while Deborah walked through her most recent dream memories. She found what she believed to be the first one, the room was different than the room was now. She could see the decorated cake near the bed. A little girl lying in bed crying quietly. She could feel Aska’s concern in the dream for the lonely child. It was as though Aska had just walked in to the room as well. She had been dreaming of a test in school and got up to sharpen a pencil, when she opened the door to what was a supply closet instead she walked in to this child’s room. She had looked around, knowing there was a little girl in here who needed to sleep. In her dream she had decided she was babysitting the child and sat next to her bed and began singing her a lullaby.
The dreams were always similar in nature. Aska would be doing something else, having another dream and she would feel how lonely this child was and go to her. Sitting down and singing until she fell asleep then the dream Aska had been having would resume. The only change happened a few weeks ago when the room the child was in changed. The cake was no longer on a shelf near the bed. The room was smaller. The bed now a cot instead of a child’s twin size bed. And the child was even more alone. When she revisited the dream from last night she felt the same emotions as the earlier dreams, Aska seeking out the lonely child to help her sleep, but then she saw Aska’s dream memory of her Aunt in the room. And as soon as she saw Dot someone else did too. She felt the push of energy that had been directed at kicking Dot out and ended up waking Aska so the dream ended with a quick cut instead of the blend back in to the previous dreams that the others had. She also looked at the dreams Aska had the rest of the night but there was no sign of the child or the room.
After ending the connection with Aska Deborah related as many details as she could. “I’m sorry there isn’t anything else there. Aska never goes in to any other part of the house, just the room with the child. She sings to her until she is asleep and then leaves again.”
“Aska, do you remember anything else?” Joy turned to her niece, “Now that you’ve been through all of those dreams again, is there anything that stands out to you?”
Aska thought about it. “I don’t think I found her. I think she found me.”
“What do you mean?”
“Everyone keeps saying that I go to her, that I felt her and sought her out. I don’t think that’s right. It doesn’t feel like I went to her, it feels like she came to me. Like when I am at Kayla’s house and Aunt Joy lets me know it’s time to come home? She comes to me.”
Joy smiled at her sister, “It’s easier than using the phone.”
“So you feel like this child is coming to you? Do you know her?”
Aska shook her head, “I don’t think so. But she knows me. Does that make sense? She came looking for me. She wanted me to sing to her.”
“Hold on, I think I have something!” Joy picked up her purse and pulled out her planning calendar, “Aska, when did the dreams start?”
“A month or so ago?”
Joy pointed at a date in her book, “Look, here. Aska’s school choir sang at a recital. You had a solo didn’t you? So if she heard you singing here maybe she was thinking about how nice it would be to have you sing to her at bedtime? Maybe that’s how you found her?”
“But I didn’t find her, she found me. So she would have had to, I don’t know, how would she even have done that? She’s an Other right?”
Deidre nodded, “She is. But this gives us something. I need to find out if there is any record of the Jameson family attending that recital, maybe the older girl’s school was also singing? If we can start from that point and track out it gives us something. Aska, thank you, you have been more help than you know.” With that Deidre kissed her daughter and gathered the group to meet with Charles.