The Island Part Three
Inside the old inn, it was exactly as expected, old. Not old in a nice way, like Olde Worlde, but old in a very cheesy, creepy kind of way. It was clean, but faded and dull and not in the least welcoming. But since the only alternative was a very expensive five-star hotel, clients had very little choice.
I followed Kell through to the snug area of the bar, which was closed, and we sat and had an early morning beer and a chat.
Kell was the epitome of fitness. At six feet and a half, he was one of the few people I had to look up to. He obviously worked out at the gym and no doubt had no problem pulling attractive young females. Tall, muscular, tanned, blond, blue eyes that could mesmerise any damsel he wanted. I could see how he would equally easily draw envy, hatred even, from men with a lot less to offer, at least physically. Personally, I liked the guy instantly. In a way, he was just a big daft kid with a big heart. But oh boy, as I found out later, he was not one to mess around with.
The rest of the morning Kell showed me around the inn and then later around the rest of the island.
The island was very small, about a mile long and half a mile wide. The local population was no more than thirty, at the most. They were a mixture of normal people from the mainland, drawn there to work and enjoy a sub-tropical climate, and families that had been there for generations. Many of the latter showed all the signs of too much inter-breeding.
There really wasn’t much to see around the island. It was heavily vegetated, rugged, rocky and wind-swept. However, at one end of the island was an area called the Elysian Fields, which was home to a museum dedicated to the art of figureheads from ships which had been wrecked in the rock-strewn and perilous waters surrounding the islands.
Kell left me there to rush back to the inn and get the bars ready to open. I just sat in my jeans, loose shirt and flip-flops to enjoy the quietness of it all.
After about half an hour the fair-haired girl from the boat suddenly turned up and upon seeing me gave me a friendly smile and upbeat “Hi.”
She sat next to me and we chatted a little. I asked her to take a photograph of me feeding a wild chicken as I sat on the old wooden bench. How little did I realise that this was to be the penultimate time that I would see her. She got up to leave to continue exploring the rest of the island, but not before agreeing to meet up later back at the inn.
Fifteen minutes later I was off to wend my way to my new quarters and one of the strangest encounters of my life.
I walked into my room and decided to just lay back on my single bed and relax. I got out a book I had picked up god only knows where. ‘Beyond The Body’ was a very interesting book about Astral Projection and I was intrigued to learn more.
The book was instructional and before long I decided to give it a try, to intentionally leave my own body, purely out of nothing more than curiosity.
I lay the book down, closed my eyes and began the process. The results astounded me. After a short period, I lost all sensation of my own body pressing down on the bed.
I had entered a deep state of relaxation. I got up off the bed and stood looking down at my own body sprawled out the length of the bed. I felt like a ghost. I stepped out into the accommodation block hallway and suddenly I smelt the increasingly familiar aroma of bitter almonds.
I half expected to see the well-dressed guy from the pier earlier on. Instead, I saw the prettiest freckle-faced girl ever, stood motionless in the doorway, backlit by the sun,
She appeared both pre-pubescent and young adult at one and the same time. Like a teenager who had grown physically, but who was trapped in childhood. A child’s teddy bear hung from her right hand as she stood staring at me. It was like looking at another ghost.
“ You’re not safe here, please go, before it’s too late. They want your soul.”
As she whispered this she looked back over her shoulder, as if afraid somebody might have followed her.
In an instant she was gone, fleet of foot running out without making a sound. At that point, the smell of bitter almonds grew stronger. feeling a little out of my depth, I went back to my room to see my own prone body stretched out on the bed. I lay down and closed my eyes.
After what seemed like seconds I opened my eyes and felt so so relaxed I could hardly believe it. But the strange meeting with the girl phased me out a little. I could still hear her words swimming around my head.
" You're not safe here, please go, before it's too late!"
Was it just a dream? Or was my life, my soul, really in danger? It was certainly spooky, and yes, more than a little chilling. I was later to wish I had acted upon her advice and just grabbed my bag and ran. But in the cold light of day, the idea seemed preposterous. As I lay there mulling this all over, I hadn’t noticed that somebody had entered my room. Somebody whose shadow loomed large and somewhat threateningly over me. I looked up to see.....