Amira was carrying the last of the art supplies from Gabriel’s car down the winding track to the bungalow. Gabriel had been driving to Waldmeer for the previous few weekends as he was keen to fix up the bungalow as a country studio.
“Thanks a lot, Maria,” said Gabriel. “Anywhere on the floor is fine.”
“Okay,” said Amira. “I’ll leave you to it. I’m sure you have lots to do.”
She turned for the door which was only two steps away. The entire length of the bungalow was no more than ten steps, probably eight of Gabriel’s. It was just enough room for a bed and a small kitchen table. One single cupboard and sink made up the kitchen. Next door was a tiny room with an old but adequate bathroom. Running along one entire wall was Gabriel’s art and sculpting equipment. As the floor was uneven, he had bits of wood underneath everything. It was a constant reshuffle of the wood to try and get the structures stable.
The past few weekends in Waldmeer, Amira had been seeing a man out of the corner of her eye. She could tell that the man was no longer an Earth resident because he was translucent. That made it easy! If she looked at him directly, he would disappear. He was about her age. Tall, blonde, broad shoulders like a footballer. Amira felt that It was not actually her that he wanted to speak to. She guessed that he wanted to speak to someone in Waldmeer who couldn’t see him. She had no idea who, but life always has a way of telling us what we need to know.
Amira hadn’t had the nightmare since she was twenty which was six years ago. Back then, she was known as Maria. It hadn’t even crossed her mind in the two years she had been living in Eraldus, in the city. Now that she was travelling each weekend back to Waldmeer, the nightmare was occasionally returning. It was strange because nothing could be more charming than Waldmeer; going to sleep and hearing the distant sea, waking to the forest birds, walking to the rhythm of the breaking waves. Some years ago, she had come face to face with the nightmare malevolence when she went to see her teacher, Erdo, in the forest. That occasion marked the first time Amira spoke to Maria. It was the beginning of many years of instruction from Amira to Maria. These days, Maria was back in the Homeland and Amira had sole charge of the body they had both inhabited. Some years were lost in the transition and Amira was now in her late thirties. Like all the secret ones who claim their spiritual inheritance, she seemed somewhat ageless.