Bad Experiences Chap. 7

Nora pulls into the parking lot of Smoke and Mirrors. She spotted Julia’s Range Rover parked in front of the store. She parks her mustang next to Julia’s car. She gets out and adjusts her sunglasses. After adjusting her sunglasses, she walks into the store. When she opens the door, she is hit in the face by the scent of sage burning.

She shakes her head as she walks further into the store. The place hasn’t changed much since the last time she visited Julia. She notices two tables have been added. One she knew was used for a tarot card reading. The second one had a large quartz crystal ball sitting in the middle of it.

“Julia, are you here?” Nora stops at the counter and looks behind it.

Nora hears the rustling of the bead curtain that blocks the doorway towards the back. She watches as her friend comes walking towards her.

“It’s taken you long enough to come and see me, Nora.” Julia walks up to Nora and hugs her.

Nora was surprised by that statement. She returns the hug “you knew I would be coming to see you?”

“Of course I did, ma chère. The spirits have been restless, and a few have dropped by to warn me.” Julia had her mother’s gift of speaking with the dead.

“What have they been telling you?” Nora was skeptical about Julia’s ability to speak to the dead.

“That, you shouldn’t be sticking your nose into this mess, Nora.” Julia knew Nora was better at sending people to the afterlife than dealing with them.

“I can’t back out now, Julia. I gave my word that I would help.”

“I know. Your friend has already been here asking about you.” Julia has met Circe.

“I take it, you were careful about what you told her about me?” Nora watches Julia’s body language.

“That I was. I could sense she was into some heavy mystical stuff.”

“Do you think I should trust her?” Nora knew Julia was good at trusting people.

Julia had to think about the question for a minute. She did feel that she had taken several lives, but she did feel that she had changed.

“Let’s say I would trust her now, but keep your guard up.”

“Thanks. I need to ask you some questions about Alex Crowley.” Nora had a bunch of questions about him.

“You want to know what you are dealing with?” Julia already knew Nora’s first question.

“Yes.” Nora didn’t seem shaken at what Julia did.

“He’s dealing in some very dangerous magic. He is messing with forces that go against nature.”

“How so?” Nora was curious.

Julia had to think about the best way to explain what Alex was doing. Then she remembers that Nora is a movie buff.

“Have you seen the movie Freejack?” Julia watches Nora’s eyes.

“You mean the movie with Emilio Estevez, Mick Jagger, and Rene Russo? Yeah, it’s one of my favorite scifi movies. Why?”

“Remember in the movie that they took a race car driver from the past to transfer the essence of a billionaire from the future into the race car driver’s body?”

“Yeah, I remember that. Is that what Alex Crawley is doing? Transferring people’s essences into different bodies?”

“Worst, he’s draining their life essence and giving it to whoever pays him the most money. He has an ancient artifact from Eygpt that allows the transference of a person’s essence from one body to another. He can take years from you to give to another.”

“Okay, now that is strange. I can see how many rich people afraid of dying would want years back. However, I do have another question for you. Can you explain this to me?” Nora takes the two pictures out and sets them on the counter.

Julia looks at the pictures and then back up to Nora. Her eyes rolled up into her head, and in a weird-sounding voice, “look for Dr. Sarkov!” afterward, Julia’s eyes and the voice went back to normal.

“I hate it when the spirits do that.” Julia shivers as the spirit that had borrowed her body leaves it.

“Okay, I am officially freaked out now.” Nora has never seen anything like it except on television in a movie.

“I can’t believe a big bad assassin like you would get freaked out.” A smirk forms on Julia’s face.

“I’m not an assassin. And yes, that isn’t something you encounter all the time.” Nora still had chills from watching what happened to Julia.

Julia shakes her head and wonders what Dr. Sarkov had to do with Alex Crawley. She looks up at Nora “you’re going to need some protection against Mr. Crawley and his magics.” She removes a necklace from around her neck. There was a silver disk imprinted with strange words on it.
She hands it to Nora “here. Wear at all times. It will protect you from evil spirits and whatever magic Mr. Crawley uses.”

“Won’t you need it?” As Nora accepts it and looks at it.

“I’m fine. I can always make another one. You’re going to need it. I don’t know why, but you will.”

“Thanks. Now, why don’t you tell me what religion Mr. Crawley is involved in and where I can go to investigate for myself.” Nora takes a legal pad out from her purse.

Julia comes from behind the counter and goes down the shelves of books. She starts pulling several books off the shelves and stack them up in her arms. Afterwards, she goes back to where Nora was standing and set the stack on the counter. She lloks at Nora “here is everything I have on him. I would suggest you go through these before confronting him.”

Nora looked at the books and then at Julia “you don’t play fair.”

“I know.” Julia walks back behind the counter.

“How much do I owe you?” Nora pulls her wallet out of her purse.

“Eighty dollars. I’m giving you the family discount.” Julia starts ringing each book up.

Nora shakes her head as she pulls her credit card out and pays for them.

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