Davina’s letters brought an understanding to Fiona’s worries, but they had also brought her a good deal of pain. It was hard for a mother to realize that her child was prepared to die, and, more so, that she was prepared to die to save her mother and her own child. Fiona sat the paperwork down on the Wurlitzer piano that was placed perfectly in the study while continuing to ponder about all of the steps Davina took before she died. She understood protecting Sebastian, but Fiona would never want to see Davina murdered to save her old and dated life. My life was half over, she thought as she played and twirled the end of her hair. The reality of the sacrifice from Davina was a feeling of heartbreak for Fiona.
Davina and Sebastian both had said the phrase that kept coming up, “Secrets save lives”, but what secret were they protecting and keeping from Fiona? Did Finn know what was going on, or Lucas? A plethora of questions had her perplexed and a cluster of questions rang out in her head at the thought of all of the words in the letters and the lives around her that were protected by these secrets. She didn’t want Davina to die in vain, but it was hard for her to refrain from thinking that it would truly be the only result. They would find us eventually, she worried, and if they found us once…they’ll find us again.
She was not wrong, and there was a huge stage that could play out with the Deville’s and Flannery finding them again. The names…that’s why she gave us the names. It was like silver glitter and stardust sparkled above her head, and she got an epiphany. A light bulb went off in her head. The names were the centerpiece of salvation for herself, Sebastian, and Finn.
Sebastian wandered into the study where Fiona was attempting to grapple the cliffs in her racing mind about Davina, this home, Finn, Sebastian, and Lucas. Klaus was prancing gleefully by Sebastian’s side without a care in the world, just wagging his tail with his tongue dancing around outside of his furry mouth. The little blonde dog laid down on the carpet while Sebastian hopped onto Gammy’s lap. He looked at her in a curious way.
“Gammy? Can I ask you a question?” His head danced on his shoulders a bit, and he smiled with rosy cheeks that popped out when he simpered up to his grandmother as he popped a butterscotch candy in his mouth.
Fiona could not deny his cuteness even in the weird state of mind she was in. He was not one of those children that you could just dismiss because his inquisitive nature made him even cuter. Plus, Fiona was not one to refuse a good question from anyone, especially Sebastian.
“Absolutely! You may ask me anything! What do you want to ask, sweetie?” A smile matched upon her lips as he smiled again with a small giggle under his breath.
“You’re silly, Gammy!” He giggled again, and asked, “Do you think I could call Jenna and Miss Sharon?”
Fiona could see his worry through the smile, and she could also see him putting on all the glam to sugarcoat what he was really trying to say.
“What’s up, my sweet boy? Talk to me, and then we can see what I can do to get you on the phone with Jenna.” Fiona’s head cocked to the side to see past the pouting face Sebastian developed on his face. He hopped down off her lap, and he sat in front of her on the floor. A frown developed on his lips before he began speaking.
Klaus thought his friend taking a seat on the ground invited him to give a big lick across his face, and in the dog doing so ended in making him giggle through the pouting lips. “Klaus! No more kisses!” He put the puppy on his lap and began telling Gammy about a new secret. “Miss Sharon and Jenna are in trouble, Gammy. She knows too much.”
Hearing the tone of Sebastian’s voice and the gloom behind it made goosebumps develop across her skin to the point she felt them in the thin wrinkles on her forehead. “Let me get Finn, sweetheart. He needs to hear this.”
Sebastian nodded affirmatively, “Okay, Gammy.”
As Fiona got up and traveled around the big mansion to find Finn, she thought that it may be too late to save them, and she wondered what all was being talked about when Davina would lay with Sebastian and tell him bedtime stories. It had to be one of the only times that she could give him all the secrets he is spilling out to them.
Finn was back out on the balcony watching the cars crossing the intersections in front of the big metal gate of the property. He looked as if he was daydreaming. When Fiona came out of the French doors, he looked back and grinned.
“Hey, Ms. Fiona. Everything okay?” Finn turned to face her as she hugged herself up away from the cold with her arms. “Here…wear this.” He took off his jacket and put it over her shoulders. A gentleman, she thought.
“Oh, thank you, Finn. You will get cold though…” She exclaimed.
He interrupted her, “No, no…it’s good. What’s up?”
She took a few steps closer to talk softer. “Sebastian told me another secret. It sounds like Sharon and Jenna are in trouble. Could you come and listen to what he has to say?”
“Of course. Let’s go see what little man has to say.” He put his hand on the threshold of Fiona’s back right above her hips and led her inside the doors. Fiona blushed. “After you, ma’am.”
It was hard for Fiona to hold back a smile. It felt absurd to her to have her cheeks heat up from his touch. Stop it, she thought, he is your daughter’s age…for Christ’s sake, she argued with herself and her mind.
“Thanks, Finn!” She walked into the house like she was hurrying towards a taxi that she was trying to catch.
Finn noticed and just simpered into his hand while pretending to yawn into it when she looked back at him. His cheeks had turned red like hers. It was getting late, so a yawn was not too conspicuous.
As he finished his fake yawn, he stretched out his arms and said, “No problem. Where is Sebastian, and I will go talk to him?”
“I left him in the study with Klaus.” She let his coat slide from her shoulders and passed it back to Finn.
Finn took the coat and folded it onto his arm. “I’ll talk to him. Don’t worry. If there is something going on with Sharon and her family, Lucas and I will get to her. Grab some ‘Fiona time’, and I got this.”
Fiona nodded and trusted the words he spoke to her. She knew he would protect everyone that meant something. It was his nature. He had an altruistic way of helping people, especially her family and friends. He was a breath of fresh air. “Come get me when you are done, please? I am going to go grab a quick cigarette on the balcony, then I will be in my room.”
“You bet, swee…I mean…Fiona.” His awkwardness made them both laugh. “Sorry…let me get in here and talk to little man, and I’ll be up in a few.”
“Okay. I’ll be waiting for you.” She said as she walked back towards the doors they had just come in from. She was calm and collected on the outside, but the inside…a river of emotion and hormones were running around and making her heartbeat outside of her chest…or at least it felt like it was. For the moment, it felt like she was dreaming of castles in the sky when he was around, but it still felt weird.
She grabbed her jacket from the coat rack and exited through the doors leading onto the balcony while putting an unlit cigarette into her lips with lighter in hand. A cold breeze smacked her in the face at first but then subsided. It was so loud that it was peaceful in a strange way as she made her way out to fill her lungs with smoke. Finn was on her mind, and she felt like she was betraying someone by catching any kind of feelings for him.
However, falling for him was beginning to feel unavoidable, even though she felt that it was wrong. Still, the urge to be close to him was overwhelming her fears and becoming a reality that she could accept. The balcony was shielded from the harsh winds of the Illinois skies at night, so she pulled one of the loungers to a comfortable spot to relax while lighting her cigarette after she plopped down. An exhausted sigh escaped her lips as she listened to the night, and she unconsciously pulled her winter stockings up a bit higher to fix the chill that had set upon her legs in the short time.
She heard sirens and the hissing of tires as they drove by on the street in the distance. A glance of the ruby-colored taillights on cars passing by on the distant road was like a light show through the trees. An indistinct voice could be heard when there was an absence of cars on the road. It sounded like a police radio, and it was probably coming from the security booth at the gate into the housing perimeter. She imagined that the devils that hunted her family were out there somewhere, and she wondered if the officers in the booth would be able to handle an attack of that family’s caliber. There were so many people who had access to them, like the postman and the cable guy. They could hide in plain sight, be stealthy, she thought.
Her imagination was living in a world that was far away from the silver spoon way of thinking. She never tried to boast or brag, but her empathic side was quite in-tune with the world around her and beyond until all of this happened with Davina and the Devilles. She had to believe the worst could happen, just as she did before they dragged Davina’s bloated body out of the Wabash River.
What if Cole gets to coach a baseball team that Sebastian joins? That would be a victory that the sadistic father would toast and celebrate. He would break bread and do the most to show off his acquisition of his son. She felt like he was near, and he was not one that liked to share Sebastian with anyone else. He lived to see the fear in his son’s eyes. It’s why Davina got away…his abuse of Sebastian. She could not bear the thought of Cole being in their lives again, but then the thought crossed her mind…I would be dead. He wouldn’t let me live. The robbery of her grandson would be his biggest conquest, and she still had no idea how to stop it. He was the poster child for a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and she just hoped she would be able to see him coming. Deep down in her thinking, she realized that they could move to France and that egotistical psychopath would still find them.
Just as she finished the worry about Cole, Finn joined her again on the balcony and pulled up the other lounger next to her. She noticed he was frazzled, and his emotions were heightened.
“How did it go?” asked Fiona.
Finn did that nervous scratching of his head before saying, “We really need to find a way to check on Sharon. Little man made it clear what the secret was, and it’s not good.”
Fiona stood up from the lounger and rushed towards the door. “We need to ask Lucas for some insight.”
Finn followed behind her with his face filled with the darkness that Fiona had never wanted to see again.
This was written using several prompts. I used Shay’s Word Garden #17 and a few of Di’s (pensitivity101) Three Things Challenges. I also used several word challenges. All bolded and hyperlinked words are from a word challenge.
For those of you that are not familiar, this is a story that started with Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge.
The first snippet in the series is: HERE