Chapter 7:

Planning

Sanctuary



A couple minutes later I stood in the cold of the evening, looking around me. It took me awhile for my eyes to adjust to the darkness, against the light of the school behind me. A sprinkle was coming down, so I kept my hands in my pockets so my phone didn’t get wet. I walked down the steps, looking around me, and after a few minutes of walking, I saw someone emerge from behind a tree, their black silhouette taking a few steps towards me. I stood there, looking over at the silhouette.
“Meeshee?” I asked.
The figure walked towards me, and I could see its features come into focus. Enough of the light from outside the school let me see the woman’s face as she came closer to me.
“Thank you for coming.” Meeshee said.
“Tell me something,” I said, trying to sound calm, “who are you, Meeshee?”
Meeshee stood there, not answering for a moment. “I’m a normal person, born in a normal family, if that’s what you mean,” she smiled a bit, and I accepted the gesture, but I was still desperate to know what on earth was going on.
“I’m wanted by the gang who kidnapped you because of what I built. The gang is called the Kami Naifu, the ‘biting knife’. They’ve worked in the weapons industry for years, roping in anyone they think possesses either weapons or the capability of producing them. I created electronic wave emitters, which I can use for all sorts of things. That’s how I was able to send you the text message.”
As Meeshee said this, she raised an arm from behind the folds of her cloak. I could hardly see right, but it looked like Meeshee wore some sort of elaborate bracelet. I guessed this is what she used to do all that strange stuff.
“What about the dreams? Did you have something to do with that too?”
Meeshee put a finger to her chin, thinking. “What did you see in the dream?”
“You were asking for help,” I said, recalling the dream I’d had repeatedly for months on end, “you were on your knees, reaching for anyone to come help.”
“That actually happened to me,” Meeshee said, “it was when I saw my parents be killed by the Kami Naifu. I had just finished building what technology I have when they took my parents. They wanted to bargain for their lives over this,” she tapped her wrist, “but my parents told the Kami Naifu that they’d rather die, and were killed. Once I raised my hand, like you said I did in the dream,” she raised her hand, “I shocked them; they were still alive but incapacitated. I knew they’d want blood just as much as my technology when they awoke.”
I was speechless. So I was seeing a vision of this woman’s past, over and over again? I didn’t know how that was possible.
“How does that even work?” I asked, confused. “I can understand that after the first dream, I got so interested that I mulled it over in my head; that’s how memories form anyway, so then all these months I’ve just been recalling my memory of that one night and consequently having those dreams. But how did what happened to you initially get into my head?”
Meeshee looked down for a second.
“Meeshee?” I asked.
Meeshee spoke, but kept her head down. “I, ran from the gang; I didn’t know where I was going, but I needed to get away. I couldn’t think straight, things weren’t making sense. All I wanted, was for the pain to end. So, after climbing onto a building that happened to have a decent antennae, I tried to electrocute myself using this very same technology.”
I stood there, dumbfounded.
“But it didn’t work. I only got my old wrist device to break. But I guess in that process, I sent part of the memory, part of what happened, in a sort of telepathic link, on to you.”
I thought about that night. I had an old TV next to my bed that was hooking right next to the antennae. It was a long shot, but maybe she transferred her memory through the antennae into the TV, and into me. There were plenty of strange things the mind could do, and matter so often acted outside of everything we could explain about it. So, maybe that initial night, her attempted suicide, projected her memory to me when I slept. If that could happen, I was completely dumbfounded.
“So I climbed into your house, I noticed the kitchen door was open,” Meeshee continued, “I needed some time to think and to relax, and that’s when I saw you drawing me.” Meeshee smiled. “You’re very good at art.”
I nodded, accepting Meeshee’s compliment, but had my mind set on something else.
“What should I do to help?” I asked.
Meeshee looked up, looking a little shocked by my answer, as though I would have rejected her if I knew her story.
“They didn’t hurt me last time.” I continued. “What if I got myself caught again?”
“I believe that might work.” Meeshee said with a nod.
“Would you be against bargaining your technology for your life?” I asked, assuming Meeshee could just remake the technology.
“I considered that possibility,” Meeshee said with a hint of subtext, “but I realized that if the Kami Naifu got hold of my technology, they’d enslave me to reproducing more. I would be in bondage to them as long as they could get more weapons from me. That would be worse than simply running from them.”
“And my guess is they have a few inside people to keep the police and the government off their backs?” I asked.
“Correct.” Meeshee said. “Like any other gang that holds considerable power, they hold influence as well.”
I grit my teeth a little. Seemed like a lot was riding on possibility.
“This won’t end,” I said, for clarification, “unless we stop them. They’ll hunt all of us if they get a hold of that technology. If I get caught again, we have to make it count.” Meeshee nodded, understanding. I turned towards the school.
“Let’s go inside. At least we can plan better when we’re out of the rain.”
“Alright.” Meeshee said, and followed me into the school.


Once we got back into the school, I led Meeshee up the silent stairs back to the library. Once I reached the top of the stairs, I saw Risa standing near one of the windows. She turned upon seeing Meeshee and me, then smiled and walked up to me.
“Who’s your friend?” Risa asked.
“This is Meeshee,” I said, smiling. “She’s a friend from my apartment. Her room is being redone so she needs a place to stay.”
“Ah, I see.” Risa said, looking a little down about something as she turned to Meeshee.
“Pleased to meet you.” She said. Meeshee responded in kind.
I decided to not assume anything about Risa’s expression and led Meeshee to the library. Once I got her situated and I packed up my things, I got to thinking that it might just be better to head home anyway, then Meeshee and I could plan as we went.
“So, Risa,” I said, turning towards her with a smile, “I’m gonna’ turn in for the night, I’m glad we got to talk.”
Risa smiled, the light in her face coming back as she did so.
“Me too.” She said, then waved as Meeshee and I left.