The story so far:
I leaned against the wall for support, my knees suddenly in danger of buckling under me. My head swam under the barrage of images from my dream. She had been there in that cave, broken and mutilated, I had seen her- the parts that were left... oh god. Nausea roiled in my stomach. Now, Methra was really concerned,
"Adara!" she exclaimed, rushing over from behind the desk. Sucking in a deep breath, I waved her off.
"It's okay," I managed, "I'm okay. Dashed out the door this morning... no time for breakfast... now hearing about Mrs. Flores... just more excitement than I was ready for I guess." Brushing a hand across my forehead that was now cold and clammy, I straightened slightly and began backing towards my office.
"Doctor? I-" she broke off, clearly not satisfied with my explanations, "Can I get you something from the vending machines?"
"Yes," I replied, grateful in more ways than one. She was an intuitive woman, and the patience to respect my obvious evasion was only one of the many qualities that I admired in her.
"I'd like a coffee and maybe some of those cinnamon-sugar doughnuts. You know, the ones that you can feel clogging arteries the moment you swallow them? I really appreciate it."
She nodded once and left saying, "Your next patient isn't until 11:30am. Take it easy will you?"
With the sticatto click of her heels receeding down the corridor, I urgently pushed open the door and sunk into my padded chair.
"Damn, damn, damn," I muttered, pressing the heels of my palm into the already-forming dull ache in my left temple. "A gift from God, huh? I'd hate to see what he gives the people he doesn't like."
The door opened soundlessly, Mora set the steaming cup of coffee and cellophane-wrapped heart-attack-waiting-to-happen sitting on the edge of my desk and left me to my thoughts. Sighing wearily, I quietly rehashed the familiar argument that I'd been having with myself since the dreams started.
I have to do something.
What can you do?
I can call the police-
And what? Tell them that you know that there will be more murders? That the next one will be Adultry? That they maybe have a few days at most to find this guy before somone else dies? That's great. Very Helpful. Gold medals all around.
There has to be something...
And that's where the journals came in. A score of notebooks, hundreds of entries. I told myself that it was therapeutic but in truth it was dangerously close to obsessive. I wrote with the same kind of pen every time; documenting every detail that I could remember, grinding each letter into the paper with the pent-up frusteration, rage and humiliation accumulated over the years. My pain, and my guilt was also on those pages. Why could I know, but not enough to save them?
That part of my life unresolvable, I made daily work at my clinic an act of pennance. Maybe someday, I could balance the scales. Maybe that someday was today.
I talked with her- heard her high-pitched whispery little girl voice over the phone asking timidly when my next opening was. She sounded vulnerable (in all fairness, they all did really), and she was finally reaching out for help. Had she known that someone was stalking her? Did she sense danger like a deer scenting a wolf?
#9: Thou shalt not bear false witness against they neighbor. And then, the one that she has seen tonight; #7 Thou shalt not commit adultry. So he wasn't going in order, to her analytical mind that meant that his choice of victims was more inportant