When Linda and her adopted brother, Falk, return home from school to visit their critically ill father, they never expect someone is plotting against them. But shortly after coming to terms with their feelings for each other, they find themselves running through the forest for their lives. Servants in the household have turned against them, but they don’t know who is leading them or why. Could the strange visions Linda has been having hold the answers?
Finding herself again turned out to be harder than Linda thought it would be. Rather than returning to where the dream had left off, she found herself floating in a land of inconstant shadow. She moved through it, taking care as she sifted through the various images so she wouldn’t miss the younger version of herself.
At last, a small amber flicker on the edge of her vision drew her. Her heart quickened in response. The light pulsated in an irregular beat at first and then, as she focused on it, grew stronger and became a solid beacon. Somehow, she knew it was the girl. When she arrived at the brilliant heart of the light, she somehow merged with it and moved into the dream sequence. Once again, dream girl’s lips moved with no sound emerging. As before, she sat looking at a mirror through the steam of a pot of something boiling in front of her.
“Wait a minute. What did you say?” Her brow scrunched in concentration. Falk’s last words echoed in her ears. She had to get the girl to speak up this time.
The girl’s lips continued to move. She tried to move closer but an invisible barrier held her back. She slammed her hands against it. “I can’t hear you!” she cried. “What are you saying?”
Thinking back, she remembered what she’d done prior to hearing the girl’s voice last time. Pressing her hands against her chest, she concentrated on her breathing, steadying the rhythm until it became slow and deep. Her mind calmed until it was still as the lake during early morning.
Just like that, the sound switched back on and she could hear the girl’s voice. But this time, it was like hearing the girl from down a long corridor in echoes. “Attacking…tonight…they’re coming. Run and hide. The men… coming…tonight… Go now!”
Linda bolted upright in bed, awake and aware, every sense tight and thrumming. They had to get out of here! They had to run! But when she felt the covers beside her, Falk was nowhere to be found. Panic filled her every sense.
She stumbled out of bed, covers coming with her as she fumbled around for the light and then her clothes. She hurried but, at the same time, did her best not to make too much noise. Had they taken him? Did they have Falk already? Her heart hammered in her ears, a stark contrast to the quiet air of tension. Who is coming? Her logical brain questioned. But she had no answer for it and the girl hadn’t said. She ran on pure instinct. The urge to flee was strong.
Once her shoes were on her feet and she had a jacket on, she walked through the sitting room. The chair remained against the locked door. “Falk?” she called in a quavering whisper. “Where are you?”
A bad feeling came over her, freezing her joints in place. Had he left her side for some reason? He’d promised to watch all night. Tears congregated in her eyes, and her breaths came faster.
Someone tapped her on the shoulder, and she barely concealed her frightened squeal as she spun around, arms raised in a defensive posture.
But it was him.
Falk’s eyes were wide as he looked at her with confusion. “Linda? What’s going on?”
She flung her arms around him with relief but then let him go, her body on full alert.
“I’m fine,” she said. But she didn’t have time to explain. She couldn’t ignore the suffocating feeling in her chest. “We have to go. Now,” she whispered in a quavering voice. “Follow me.”