"I should… I should after what you’ve done to my husband… his wife and brother…" she hissed angrily. "Saving my son and murdering my brother can not erase that…" She could feel hot tears roll down her face, her hand starting to shake as she tried to take better aim.
Hearing her repeat his crimes to her, and not even all of them, made his eyes sting with tears. “All the better for you to do it, correct?” he asked, pulling the collar of his shirt down to expose the skin over where his heart beat. “You have no reason to feel guilt over this.”
Mireille swallowed and pulled out the pistol, the barrel pointed straight at him. “Maybe I can help,” she said, trying her hardest to be brave about this.
The creature was still for a moment, the smell of iron strong in the air. “If that is what you wish.” he decided. He untied his cloak, lay down his skinning knife out of reach, then turned and stood to face her at his full height. He crossed over his heart with his fingers, gesturing her where to aim.
"Why didn’t you die… up there in the ice and snow? Why do you linger?"
"Believe me, madam. I wish as much as you do that I had stayed up there to perish." The creature hung up the rabbit skin on a peg sticking out of a nearby tree. "It seems with this body I am confined to, I can withstand extraordinary environments, and it seems I am too much of a coward to end my own life."
"William is still napping and I said I wouldn’t be long… No one knows I’m here," she said calmly, staring in his direction.
"I would expect so." the creation answered as he picked his rabbit back up. He sighed and did the best he could to brush the dirt off of it. "So you have more to say to me?"
Mireille slipped into the patch of trees where hardly anyone entered, following the map carefully. She stopped, removing the pistol from her purse to stash away secretly into her coat pocket. And with a deep breath, she called for him. “Adam… Creature… whatever you are called… I’m here.”
The creation dropped the rabbit in his hands in a very rare moment of surprise, but he didn’t turn to face her. “Sundown will be in an hour or so.” he told her, “I am surprised you came so late.”
"I’m surprised she was accused at all; everyone knew she loved that boy." She perked a brow, "so you know who did?"
"The workers of households are always so easy to blame. It truly is a tragedy, she died too young…" Victor bit his lip, unsure if he should go on. "Mrs. Batley, perhaps I’m not the proper person to talk to about this subject."
"What do you think I’m saying? Come on dear, catch up."
"Your implications are just a bit concerning, that’s all. You’re correct in believing your sister was falsely accused….but don’t be so quick to point fingers."
”Are you saying I’m old?”
"Don’t be silly. You’re thirty-seven, at the oldest it looks like. And considering the life expectancy of the average woman is eighty-five, that’s not even middle aged. When I say matronly, I only mean that you run the show around here. People come to you for advice and all that."
"Of course it wasn’t her fault, she loved that boy. But I’m sure you did everything you could right?"
"What are you trying to say?"
Mireille folded up the pieces of paper and stashed them into her purse. Then, with little time she had left, she went to the bookshelves. She remembered her husband having special ones with hidden compartments and there was one thing specific she needed. She found one with a lock on it and took a hair pin to it. It took her awhile but she managed to get through and inside was exactly what she was looking for.
She stashed the pistol into her purse and set everything back to where they belonged very carefully as if no one had gone through the shelves at all. Mireille almost jumped when she heard the door knock and quickly went to answer it. “Thank you so much for doing this. I am in your debt,” she told Greg as he slipped inside. “No problem. How long will you be gone?” he asked. “It shouldn’t take long. Half an hour at least,” she replied, grabbing her coat and hanging her purse over her shoulder.
And with that Mireille was out the door and into the car… making her way to the park.
The creature had his own tiny home made out of tangled branches and dried twigs, small as it was so nobody would dare to enter it. He was occupied with skinning a rabbit he had caught. He hadn’t expected Mireille to come, though he kept up his guard just in case he were ever to be seen by anyone, and he always wore his protective cloak.