Landon Connors: Leap of Faith, Part 5
The apparition held close to the shadows, invisible to all but the most sensitive. Its eyes were focused on the detective moving slowly through the derelict Victorian, wincing at every creak of termite eaten timber. It wouldn’t be long before this ruin was as much a ghost as Greg Mitchell was. And if Landon Connors weren’t more careful, he’d be a shade himself soon enough.
Mitchell came and went of his own accord, at least when the telluric currents were aligned. When not he needed to be conjured, but the course of ancient energies were in his favor and the spirit was able to look after his former mentor. Choosing to do so discreetly would have drawn the detective’s ire, but Mitchell figured that a spook in the wings was better than an ace up one’s sleeve.
Boo, the detective’s articulate familiar, had put Connors on to this place, a once magnificent two-story farmhouse that nature was looking to reclaim. Windows were smashed, the roof’s wood shingles were scarce, and insects were eating the old girl alive. It was doubtful she’d stand through another winter.
Moving up to the second floor, the stairs groaning in protest, Connors continued to press his luck. Mitchell followed by way of incorporeal travel, rising up and through the rotted ceiling, ahead of the detective.
What the eidolon spied would have taken his breath away if he was still amongst the living. As it were, his spectral eyes locked upon the bloody symbol painted on the floor. It was contained within a chalk circle, the nubs of spent elemental candles at the quarters.
But the symbol itself…
Mitchell let it sink in. The sigil was an Enochian kenning. Moving forward, oblivious to the detective’s approach, he worried over the clumps of rotted flesh inside, the remains of a sacrifice. He chose to believe it was a young swine, but knew better.
“Greg?” the detective said from behind him. “What the hell are you doing here?”
“Don’t come in, Landon,” the spirit replied. “I can tell you what you need to know.”
“This isn’t my first rodeo,” the detective said, stepping into the room.
Connors’ flashlight fell upon the protective circle.
“Gods,” he whispered.
Mitchell heard the flip of the detective’s lighter and the deep inhale as Connors drew a cigarette to life.
“Sons of bitches,” he spat. The detective bent to the ground and ran his index finger over the circle, grinding the chalk between it and his thumb . Holding out his palm, he tested the magical discourse. It was still vibrant, pulsing with residual energies.
“I wouldn’t…” Mitchell began, but Connors pushed through the circle’s protective membrane with a dagger drawn from inside his coat.
The detective took his place inside the circle, resealing it by calling upon the tutelary guardians. He began deciphering the spell cast here and was revolted by it.
Mitchell watched as the detective worked, conscious of the pain etched across Connors’ face. He was torturing himself, peeling back the layers to reveal the horrors performed here in evil’s name.
Closing the work and removing himself from the circle’s confines, Landon Connors drew a whiskey flask from his inner pocket and anointed the circle, calling upon the gods to wash away the diabolical scar left on this place.
Removing another container from within his trenchcoat, he poured this liquid about and, with a flick of his near-spent coffin-nail, the accelerant took to flame.
Mitchell joined the detective outside, watching the old Victorian’s consumption.
“You saw the symbol?” Connors asked as he lit a cigarette.
“I did,” Mitchell responded.
“And I read it right?”
“An inversion,” Mitchell said. “An Enochian sigil, reversed.”
“And?” Connors said. He needed the spirit to say it.
“Faith,” Mitchell replied. “It was the Enochian symbol for faith.”
“Yeah,” Connors spat. “That’s what I thought.”
to be continued