I have spent today unloading the Gretchen and unpacking. Albert informed me of some of what had transpired the night before, but could tell that I was still in a dark mood and left me alone.
I have decided to leave the preparations I set for the inevitable seasonal ‘Novus Babbagitis’ in place. The locks and doors are all solid, and beyond that, the Trinity Shield should alert me of approaching ‘visitors’ and keep any who may be unwanted out. If all else fails, the aetheric linkages I tied should allow me escape to the clocktower, beyond their reach. From there, I can escape in the Gretchen.
This is odd. Upon testing the aetheric linkages and their mooring platforms, something seems a bit off. When I allowed my spirit to draw my entire being along the linkage through the Aether, I wound up about a half a foot to the right of the mooring platform – just enough to almost pitch me off the roof! I had to shimmy down the roof and jump onto the back stair landing. I wonder with all the commotion if something has slipped out of alignment. I shall have to open the old boxes tomorrow and take some measurements. For now, I shall be using a ladder up on the roof!
Lord! though I deserve it, take this image from me! I barely have the strength to compose this and the cold sweat drenching my nightshirt is also making the ink bleed on the parchment. Oh the terrible sensation! My shame!
I saw her, as if it were yesterday, my dear Gretchen… her back to me, sobbing in that terrible cell. As I came up behind her I saw what was in her hands and tried to shrink back. The horror! Yet it felt as if M. had his velvety iron grip on my shoulder and was pushing me forward. There he was, our dear little boy looking up at his mother.
I knew what was to come next.
Suddenly I was no longer behind her, but in her arms, looking up a her dear, troubled, pained face. It was now her hands I felt pushing me. Pushing me down. I tried to protest, but only heard a babies cry. Then her face blurred as my head went under the water in the bucket. I could not breath! My dear – mother! No…… my sweet child…
and I woke in this puddle of my own filthy sweat sobbing. If only it had been me instead of the baby. If only I had not been such a prideful fool! If only I had left her alone – sweet child. I am a blight, a pustule on all of existence.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Later that Night~
Unrestful sleep of my cursable self. What is past is past.
it is late, perhaps 3am. I sit here in the glow. It will not turn off. It woke me, so bright I thought it surely to be morning. When I descended to the study, I saw that the glow came from the Trinity Shield. At first I assumed perhaps someone was out late in the alley, but there were no sounds of people. Just the quiet flowing of the fountain and some hums of machinery, probably from one of the factories nearby.
I waited. Half an hour passed. Arming myself, I ventured onto the stairs outside my study. No one was around within sight. I hastened back and locked the door. At least I would be safe here. Yet, what has set the Shield off? It is not likely to be wrong. Something bad is coming… perhaps it is already here. I shall have to investigate as much as I can tomorrow.