Addy sighed and tried to shake herself free from the uncomfortable feeling that wascausing her skin to prickle. They had argued this point many times, and she wasn’t about to yieldon it now – not after things had been going reasonably well for quite some time.
“No. We’ve had this talk before, and I’m not going to do this again. I’m not going to split up my family, Javan. If this is what you are doing to try to make me talk about it, then I’m going to have to ask you to leave me alone.”
She made sure that her annoyance was clear in her thoughts. But something about Javan’s words made her uneasy this time. Even during the worstof times there had been a certain level of calm to his presence, but this time it was just frantic.
“It’s not like that, it’s different this time. Something has happened that you need to knowabout, something that will really change things. What do I have to do to convince you how seriousthis is?”
Addy groaned inwardly.
“Go away, Javan. Just go away.”
Once again she lifted her hoodie and made a strongeffort to ignore him, so his whispers were just a mild but irritating buzzing at the back of her brain.But the strange chill that made her skin feel odd did not disappear and as she started downthe hall anew, the shimmery haze that had been present in the junkyard began to form in the space before her, only this time it started to take shape. Addy paused a second time. This had never happened before.The mist swirled and shifted in front of Addy. She glanced around, but nobody else in thehallway appeared to be seeing what she was seeing. She started to wonder if she were crazy again, but there were too many things that defied explanation if Javan weren’t real, like the encounter with the junkyard dog – unless she had imagined all of that too.As the haze became temporarily more substantial and Addy could make out the form of aman with something extruding from his back, she found herself unintentionally listening to Javaninstead of trying of ignoring him. This was the first time that he had taken form before her. Hehad regained her full attention.
“Addy, listen – please! Your father just lost his job for striking the foreman during anargument. He’s on his way home right now, and he’s furious. The place is in a mess, your mother is groggy from her pills and your sister has free run of the house. Considering the mood that your father is in before he gets home, just imagine how he’s going to react when he arrives there and finds that.”
Addy was stunned. If what Javan said was true, her mother and sister were about to facewhat would probably her father’s worst blow-out yet. She would have to act to protect them or else, and she couldn’t help them from where she was. He was right. It didn’t matter what theconsequences would be as far as her family unity was concerned. She would have to tell someone,