xxxxi. Intent On A Quick Exodus
Seven and Eva lay in the snow for a few minutes just staring up at the last of the stars of that early morning dusk.
“Eva―we have to go …” he said―tears in his eyes. He loved her so.
He rose up on his elbows, glancing over at her and around the immediate.
He knew they had not much time before the Silverskin dropped into pursuit.
He heard a snapping in the woods behind them—and looking back—he saw a flash between the trees. It was the Silverskin. Then he spotted her crouching down low by a stump—eyeing them up.
His supernatural senses detected grass parting in the moonlit field beyond—and he heard Draca slithering through it.
“Eva please … Let’s go! It’s time.”
Eva opened her eyes ready to do it.
Just then Faye’s silver figure dematerialized into the darkness—as Draca swam off. It was as if Eva did it.
Seven cradled Eva―brushing her hair back from her face and stroking her cheek. He had made his life feel so lucky.
“Now’s our chance … Our last …”
Eva nodded bravely. She close her eyes again for just a moment too long, when twigs snapped a ways off, alerting.
Seven helped Eva to her feet now.
‘Lucky … !!! Lucky … !!! Lucky … !’
They started sprinting for the truck.
The wind carried Faye’s voice far out, booming so loud as to shake the trees, to the four edges of French’s Forest.
Thunderheads spit blood rain across the clearing—all but blotting out their vision. It was a scene from Hell incarnate.
“Leave us be! I LOVE EVA … … … !”
‘Oh Seven, you sorry mortal thing … You know you will die soon, so you settle in love. How much you have wanted ME.’
“You should be thankful! I was the only one who could have ever loved You! You were nothing but a bane on my life!”
‘BAH!’ She balked under lightning.
Despite Her plaint, however, the blood rains let up—and the lightning subsided. It seemed as if She lost power.
‘You are lucky that I have not struck you down like a dog―Seven … My mercy must be great, given how badly you have treated me … How poorly you so acted.’
“I never meant to hurt You,” he cried, desperately kicking open the trick truck door. He was saying anything he could to keep her talking and not killing.
He loaded Eva inside―and then speedily circled back around to the driver’s side. Every step was a mile and every inch was a yard as he pistoned his legs.
“You’ve taken everything from me! You owe me this much!” he yelled—voice dripping in contempt of Her neverending, meddling interferences. He hated Her so.
Eva closed her eyes now and again. Each time she did Faye’s menace rose. She felt a bit off and still some winded.
‘I will haunt you for the rest of your life, Seven … Know that, wherever you are … I will find you … Be assured, if nothing else, you must remember this:
‘You bring Me with you―everywhere you go … Wherever you fall down, I will be there laughing at you. Every time.’
He slipped in behind the wheel—quickly twisting the ignition on. They carved out of the lot in a plume of dust.
Racing down the road, he tried to clear his mind of thoughts of Faye―but as Eva tossed and turned, in-and-out of consciousness―he noticed something closing in behind them now—flying down the highway, chasing after their escape.
Looking closer, he saw plainly that it was Faye and Draca gaining on them in a steady pursuit. They were a terrifying sight to see hunting you down so fast.
But when Eva came to—the snake and the Silverskin fell back out of sight—and when Eva then passed out again—they shortly reappeared—ever closing in.
But just as it seemed Faye and Draca would overtake them—Eva awoke again, more lucid than she had been in days—and all signs of Silverskin vanished.
Then after a quiet spell—Seven began to think that they might actually make it out of French’s Forest alive—if he could stay focused and not think of Her.
He cast into his past, frantically fishing for peaceful memories from simpler times, to keep out inklings of the Silverskin. It took constant concentration.
He remembered swinging on vines over the Payne―cannon-balling into the froth and azure, on sunny summer days—free of care or fear—in youth’s innocence.
He shifted into fifth and put the pedal flush with the mat, sailing on at full tilt while summoning the past ever back.
He drifted into darker times, however, to a dream he once had when he was only just four years old, in the days when his family lived on Black Heron Lake.
(Author’s Note: If you are enjoying The Silverskin, you can buy the full 400 page Revised & Expanded 10th Anniversary edition paperback here. Forever Yours In French’s Forest, Rian Torr)