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Cayo Elina 29

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He was gone for almost half an hour, much longer than his normal episodes. When he came to he immediately grabbed the blank notebook and started writing things down in it. Elina wasn’t so patient, “Gus, what did you see?”

“Not a lot I went forward to the raid, I found out a few things. I can’t go into the past…but…” Gus raised the notebook slightly, “I can send back messages.”

“What are you writing, Gus?”

“A long note that I saw when I went forward.”

“What?”

“I went forward and saw a note I had written myself in the future so I could read it now. Look, I’ll explain in a minute, just give me time to write this down.”

“Fine, I need something to drink anyway. You can explain it when I get back.” Elina marched out the door and spoke briefly to Hector who was still keeping an eye on the hallway for them.

Paul whined a little and put his head on Gus’s leg, begging for attention. Almost without thinking Gus scratched his ears and rubbed his back a little before getting down to the business of writing. He spent more than fifteen minutes writing in the notebook, when he finished he stared at each paged for a long moment before shutting the book. It was then that Elina came back in and he turned towards her as she handed him a drink with actual ice..

“So what did you see?”

“Ice? Good Lord we are backwater heathens out there on the island. Coconut?” Elina nodded and he took a long drink of the frothy white liquid and then answered her question, “I saw a long journal entry I won’t ever write about what I saw when I checked the future. Apparently I was going to go forward and check on things and I ended up going a little far and being out for the night. I wrote that I got sick and vomited all over the place. Good stuff.”

“But now you won’t?” Elina asked.

Gus tapped the notebook, “Not with this, this is a lifesaver, I can write about what I see without ever having to actually take a run up the paths.”

“Isn’t that cheating? I mean if you never do it than how can you write about it?”

Shrugging his shoulders Gus replied, “I’m not going to think about it. Maybe there is a price to pay for all this, if so, I can’t  see the tag yet. All I know is I had to get this written as quickly as I could before I forgot it.”

“So what did you learn?”

“It wasn’t all reading, I took what I read and moved on to different areas, it saves time too; I don’t have to go down any dead threads to see how they end up.”

“Why do I get the feeling that you’re avoiding my question?”

“Because nothing is set. You said something about cheating, well, here is the kicker, at least I think of it as one, because I am working from a future that I will never live the accuracy has got to be off even more than if I go there myself.”

“I thought you said you did go there yourself in another one of these paths?”

“I did, but now I won’t because I’ve altered the past.”

“So, you gonna tell me what you saw or not?”

With a heavy sigh, Gus nodded. “I know why I can’t see you, I think this is accurate if nothing else is.”

“Why?”

“You’re out of the time stream, you still live and die, but a future me theorized that you are invisible to me or anyone else who wants to view you. Do we know any Clairvoyants?”

“Old Maria…” Elina began, but then shook her head, “The Cubans got here in that raid before the rains came…No, I don’t know of any clairvoyants still among the living.”

“And we know Ricardo can see you, so you’re not invisible to the dead. For some reason you have developed a talent for being under the radar.”

“That’s not too helpful.”

“It might be…and you’re not alone either. There someone else who I can’t see in the future either, kind of an anomaly, but I notice it at some point and I passed it back.”

“Who?”

“Paul.” The dog wagged his tail and stood up again to lick Gus’s outstretched hand.

Elina looked at Gus for a moment before shaking her head, “You’re telling me that you can’t see me or the dog in the future, but we’re not dead?”

“I looked and I wrote about it. In some of the future I wrote that you were okay or that Paul was okay. So I know I’m sending those messages back. But I couldn’t see you in any of the future paths I looked down.”

“So did you happen to mention anything about what else I can do? I feel like I’m almost vibrating inside. I feel…dangerous.”

“It hasn’t come up.” Gus said, shaking his head.

“But it will now.”

“What?”

“All you have to do is go take a look at the future, you know I want the question answered so you will write it down when you find out. You should have the answer already, if I’m getting your ability down right…”

“You might be right, but I can’t live in the future answering questions for you or anyone else.”

“Why not?”

“Because something’s changed.”

“What?”

“I don’t know…but everything just ends. What I wrote from a distant, future me, said there was nothing ahead.”

“Nothing ahead?” Elina crinkled her forehead. “What does that mean?”

“Who can say?” Gus shrugged his shoulders, “Should we go walk the dog?”

“Nice way to change the subject, but you still haven’t told me, well, anything about what you saw.” Elina grabbed for the notebook, “Here, Moley, just let me read it myself.”

Gus grabbed for the notebook, but Elina had the height on him and he wasn’t able to get it away from her before she sprawled over the bed like an unruly older sister tormenting a younger brother. Paul leaped into the fray and tangled himself between Gus’s legs, causing the man to fall short of his intended target, the notebook in Elina’s outstretched hands. She flipped the cover open and started reading while Gus climbed over her body to reach for it.

“Wait!” She cried thrusting Gus back into the headboard, which broke under his impact.

“Geezus, Elina! If I were normal that would have killed me!” Gus said, noting that the old swath and mortar whitewall had been crushed beyond the headboard as well.

A pounding began on the wall from the room next door and an unseen man demand that they keep it down in there or he was calling the manager.

“Gus!” Elina said, spinning away from him as he tried to pin her to the bed. “Stop!”

Gus froze on the bed, he was kneeling on it and she was standing at the end, looking down on him and holding the notebook up so she could read it. “What the hell man? What is this?”

“It’s code.”

“Bullshit.”

“It is.”

“I know you, what the hell does this mean?”

Reluctantly Gus shrugged his shoulders, “It means a lot to me. I can’t explain it very well.”

Elina tossed the notebook down on the bed next to Gus and looked him in the eye. “Is it true?”

A curt nod was the only answer she needed. Bursting into tears she grabbed him about the neck and hugged him close. On the bed next to him the notebook, still with the cover folded back held the words “I die. I die. I die. I die. I die. I die. I die.” written over and over on every line.

‘It could be worse.’Gus thought to himself as Elina hugged him tight, ‘She could have gotten to page two.’

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