Startled by the flashback, I pause in the room’s center wondering what triggered the memory. How strange . . . All this time, I couldn’t remember how I bruised my forehead. The sight of the fireplace must have sparked the memory. I move toward the windows, stand between the curtains, face the room, and study the space like a ghost returned to its demise. Vapors whirl and whisper like mist taking shape. At the moment the unfolding manifestation is inscrutable. Unaware of what’s emerging, I walk through a ray of light streaming through the windows. Buoyant speckles stir fast, too fast. Fearfully, I stop and stare at the rapid charge. It’s nothing, I rationalize, just dust I’ve disturbed, I reassure an anxious mind. My back crawls with a creeping sensation. I spin around to empty space. “Okay Allie, get a grip.”
Resting my hand on the mantel, I examine the empty chasm and ponder whether a fire burned that night. I can’t remember. For a moment, the space spins and the unpleasant anxiousness swells, grating my memory. I try to squelch the aura and familiar angst I’ve lived with for months, intrusive energy invading my mind, a remote space refusing to open. I breathe deep, expel unease, and concentrate on a room I’ll never see again. Turning in several circles, I absorb every vibration, smell, color, and sound, trying to conjure that night.
A gentle breeze like fingers icing my skin raises hairs on my arms. Swiftly, I turn toward closed windows, searching for something a breeze can escape. Impossible! The only vent lies across the room. An overwhelming scent of roses whirls gossamer coils about me. My mind recognizes but refutes an invisible presence. It can’t be real. It’s just my imagination, and the room making me anxious. Instantly, something seizes my consciousness. Spectral hands clamp my body, guiding a slow descent, lowering me safely to the floor.
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