As Derrick recovered from our encounter with Karen, the air demi-goddess – watchtower of the east, I tried to track her down at the hospital, her work and her destroyed house. She had disappeared…
She showed up late Sunday night, shivering in light clothing and dripping with rain, looking for Derrick. We were all immediately suspicious and defensive. Even more so when she showed no signs of the grievous wounds Derrick and I had given her last week. Seeing her plight and non-aggression, we invited her in. Paul quickly got her a towel and a hot beverage. We all sat down and started to talk.
Karen at first struggled with what to say. Gathering resolve, she said she recognized that we had special abilities and wanted to enlist our help. She said that the Karen we encountered a week ago was not her true self. She spoke of a being named Chastity who was the Center who was becoming more assertive and controlling. She spoke of their kidnapping women and that a life would be lost on Sowen if we didn’t help. We had to break a link in a black circle on a mountain top.
I immediately offered to help. Paul and Derrick were more reserved but eventually agreed to help. Karen answered our questions but could not offer many details. She said she had to return to Chastity before she became suspicious and replaced her. As she left she gave Paul a kiss on the forehead and called him her brave knight.
The glass she was using exploded. We were not sure what to make of that. We then had to settle up what we were hiding from each other. I learned why Derrick and Paul went camping together. I showed them how I could move through walls which explained my minor injuries in the exploding house. My attempts to follow her were frustrated by the rain and darkness.
Later that night she visited our dreams looking for Derrick. In the morning, I made a pancake breakfast for my roommates and we talked about the previous night, the dreams and next steps. Derrick said Karen was entering dreams while awake which was different from how he did it. I was going to find out more about Chastity and Paul was going back to the woods to satiate his thirst and run wild. Still recovering, Derrick texted Hazel and went to a movie.
On a hunch, I went to the social work department at the University of Vermont. I found pictures of two women named Chastity in the hall outside the department. I waited in the library until it was late and went back to the undergrad office looking for information on them. I had to move quickly through the wall between the office and an adjoining classroom when a janitor started unlocking the door. I discovered that Chastity Frank was a sophomore in social work from Amarillo Texas. I did not find anything on in the graduate office. On a hunch, I went to the social work department’s webpage and found Chastity Collins, an associate professor living in Burlington and running a small shelter for homeless women.
When Paul and I returned the next morning, we learned another woman had been kidnapped – Lily Wendy Guy.