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.Lucy waved at them and then came around to the other side of the couch and sat down, kicking her shoes off and curling her feet underneath her.“I know, I know.It’s not as much fun and a big pain in the ass, but certain things have to be told and I don’t want to get you guys in any more trouble than I already have.”Will was the first to circle the couch and then he sat down on the floor with his back to the fireplace.He put his arms around his knees, waiting expectantly.Katie followed and sat on the couch opposite Lucy.Martin took a seat next to Katie, but Ellie didn’t miss the brush of his hand against the blonde’s.If Ellie wasn’t mistaken, there was something more going on between the two of them.She saw Will smile at Katie, and she wondered if Will had any idea that his other friends probably had something already going.Her guess was that he did not.But a love triangle that wouldn’t have time to come to fruition was irrelevant, although it did make her sad again for them.Lucy patted the seat next to her and looked up at Ellie.Ellie sighed and sat down.In the meantime, Jeffrey had pulled a chair from one of the sitting tables and set it directly across the coffee table from Will.The six of them now sat in a rough circle.“There are certain things that you need to know and understand about what’s going to happen from this point forward,” Jeffrey started.Lucy leaned her head back against the cushion and closed her eyes.“You guys wake me up when he’s done.”A look of annoyance crossed Jeffrey’s face.Even though Ellie thought that Lucy was being rude, she thought that it was possible that Lucy knew exactly what Jeffrey was going to say and wasn’t concerned by it.But Ellie herself was intrigued.Maybe she was finally going to start getting some insight into what was going on around her.Maybe she’d find out more about herself.She still had too many questions and not enough answers.Will, Katie, and Martin were finally quiet, and they waited, squirming in silence.Jeffrey stared at each of them for several long moments before beginning again.“As I told you when you arrived, you are currently sitting on the cusp between life and death due to the accident that you were in.You exist within the waypoint now, and to leave here before the decision of your fate would have disastrous consequences.For a short period of time, you simply are.You are not alive.You are not dead.That puts you in a very vulnerable state.There are those that would do you harm.So you must be kept safe.That is the role of the Guardian of the waypoint.” Jeffrey pointed at Ellie, who raised her eyebrows in surprise.“The Guardian will keep you safe until the appointed time when you rejoin the ranks of the living or you continue on your journey to your assigned place in the Afterlife,” Jeffrey said.Ellie’s mind spun from Jeffrey’s words.She wasn’t doing a good job of keeping herself safe; how was she supposed to keep anyone else safe?“So it’s like Purgatory,” Will breathed.Ellie could see that all three of the young people were entirely caught up in the story.Jeffrey seemed pleased that they were paying attention.“Purgatory is for those souls that are dead but have not earned a place in Heaven but also have not been quite bad enough to be sent to Hell.People who go to Purgatory could be there a very long time.” Jeffrey stared pointedly at Lucy.“They have to serve out a sentence designated by those that rule that place.No, this is not Purgatory.”“So there is a Heaven and a Hell,” Katie said with a quivering voice.Ellie was amazed to see that the blonde’s hands were shaking.She didn’t think anything would be able to faze her.But Ellie figured that coming face-to-face with the reality of the Afterlife could have that effect on someone.Jeffrey sniffed.“Heaven, Hell.What you’ve learned about these places is based on myth and conjecture.Mortals have no concept of these places and so have made up fantastical stories with no real basis of fact.”“But you just said that good people get to go to Heaven and bad people have to go to Hell,” Will interjected.Jeffrey spread his hands wide and shrugged.“You simply go where you are most likely to fit in with people like you.Wouldn’t that be anyone’s ideal of the Afterlife? Heaven and Hell are just the names of the two places where souls exist when they are not on the earthly plane.What actually happens in those two places has been grossly misconstrued.It’s more a classification and sorting system, nothing more.”“So what, no fire and brimstone or beautiful white meadows and rolling hills?” Katie said sarcastically.Jeffrey laughed.“No one on Earth has ever been to either of these places, right? I know it’s hard to believe, but neither place is any better than the other.You get to spend eternity with people like you and where you fit in.Nothing more, nothing less.”Ellie gaped at Jeffrey.She looked at Lucy, but the woman was starting to softly snore.No help there.Ellie wondered if the three were buying the line of B.S.that Jeffrey was selling.And then suddenly it hit her.Of course he would tell people this fairy tale.Of course he would lie.Just like Mikel had lied to her because it suited him.It was all a collusion to keep people calm until it was too late for them to do anything different [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]