Part 617 – Keep It Buried Deep

Upstairs. Second floor. Past the elevator. Turn right. Past the nurse’s station. Straight across from the drinking fountain.

Upstairs. Second floor. Past the elevator. Turn right. Past the nurse’s station. Straight across from the drinking fountain.

Upstairs. Second floor. Past the elevator.

Past the elevator.

Past the…

Past…

The…

Did I pass the elevator already?

Raven stopped and glanced around.

Elevator.

Elevator.

Where is it?

WHERE IS IT?

What if I can’t…

What if I’m…

Missy.

Where is her scent?

Why can’t I find it?

It has always been faint, but I can’t scent it.

It just isn’t there.

What if…

A mixed brew of a scream and a cry filled his throat.

No. I can’t lose it.

I must keep it together.

Push it down.

Bury it deep.

Don’t let it slip out.

Don’t let it escape.

Deal with it later.

Not now.

Not here.

Find her.

Save her.

Take her back home.

My home.

Our home.

Missy and mine.

Missy.

Missy, please be all right.

Be alive.

Be whole.

Just be Missy.

“Hey.” A man in a white lab coat and mirrored sunglasses stopped beside him. “I don’t think you’re supposed to be here.”

Calm.

Calm.

Calm.

“You would be wrong, sir. I am here to see XQ.”

The man’s mouth tightened into an unforgiving line. “On whose orders?”

“Antioch’s.”

“You don’t look like one of our people.”

He shrugged. “I don’t care for sunglasses, sir. Antioch gave me a dispensation.”

“Is that so?”

“Yes, sir. Where is XQ?”

“I will need to clear it with Antioch.”

Breathe calm.

Think calm.

Be calm.

Don’t lose it.

Don’t crack.

Keep the fear buried deep.

If it all comes to the surface, I won’t be able to move.

“Yes, I suppose you must. Be forewarned, sir. He is in a meeting and he does not want to be disturbed by trivial matters.”

Mirrored Sunglasses tightened his mouth again. “He didn’t tell me anything about any meetings.”

“Antioch is a very busy man, sir. It surely slipped his mind. But if you really do want me to leave,” He smiled. “direct me to the nearest elevator and I will leave.”

He pointed ahead. “It’s just up a way. Right before you turn the corner to the nurses’ station.”

Raven bowed his head. “Thank you kindly, sir.”

“Not a problem. I’ll walk you to it.”

“Ah.” Just stay calm.

For her sake.

For my sake.

“Thank you, sir.” He smiled and the tears inside of him did not fall and the fears stayed cooped up. “I appreciate it.”

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