The End of the World As I Know It (The Ghosts & Demons Series Book 2)

The End of the World As I Know It (The Ghosts & Demons Series Book 2) by Robert Chazz Chute, Holly Pop

Book: The End of the World As I Know It (The Ghosts & Demons Series Book 2) by Robert Chazz Chute, Holly Pop Read Free Book Online
Authors: Robert Chazz Chute, Holly Pop
together? Without you in my life, I might have worked those days instead of staying home and watching Spongebob Squarepants beside you on the couch.”
    “Tamara? You still with me?” It was Lynda, bringing me back to awful reality in Brooklyn.
    “I’m here, quietly feeling sorry for myself. Hey! How come you aren’t totally freaked out?”
    The old woman glanced my way and shrugged. “Should I be? That doesn’t sound like a very useful response to this situation. Perhaps if the situation improves I’ll have time to sniffle and curse like you.”
    I felt like my brain emerge from its fog and slowly crank back up to speed. “You know about what’s going on, don’t you?”
    “Ghosts, demons and holes between dimensions of the multiverse? Of course, I know. Do I look stupid to you? Did you really think it takes three full-time employees to keep the books on one funeral home? I’ve been one of Victor’s employees since long before you were born. I know where all the money goes. I was Victor’s accountant when he was a defense contractor for the first Bush administration. Before the Choir had the Keep, Victor was selling Exocet missiles to South American countries. I started as Victor’s personal secretary in 1978.”
    “Sorry. Didn’t know you knew, that’s all. Um…the other Lindas are dead.”
    “I know. I saw it happen.”
    “And Clyde.” I didn’t mention how Clyde died. I made a mental note to have a long freak out about that particular aspect of the evening when there was time. I’d have to clear my calendar for that much freak out.
    “Sam’s gone,” she said.
    Tears slid down my cheeks until I couldn’t see the road ahead. Lynda seemed reasonably fine, which irritated the shit out of me. I wanted her to hold my hand and have a nervous breakdown with me. “How is it that you’re alive, Lynda?”
    “He spared me.”
    “Why?”
    “Because I’m already old and weak and dying. I’m rotting from the inside out and that…that thing somehow knew it. Good sense of smell, maybe, like one of those cancer-detecting dogs. The Ra see no honor in killing something that isn’t dangerous. That’s what Key told me, anyway.”
    “I’m sorry, Lynda.”
    “Why? At the rate you’re going, you’ll be in the cold ground long before I get a chance to die.”
    That shut me up and led to some dark thoughts. Lynda drove me to the Keep without any need of directions.
    “Lynda?”
    “Yes?”
    “I tried to save Sam.”
    “I know.”
    “I’m sorry.”
    I was hoping she’d at least reach out and pat my hand. If I couldn’t have Mama cover me with an ugly afghan and make me hot cocoa, a little compassion from a grandmother figure would have been nice. Instead, all Lynda had for me was, “I know.”
    “You’re a tough bitch, Lynda.”
    “I know.”

Chapter 18
    As soon as we crossed inside the bounds of the Keep, the air was taut with fear and rage. Instead of parking under the Armory, Lynda turned up a ramp so we entered the West courtyard from under the Greenhouse.
    “You really know your way around,” I said.
    “I know the plans for everything that belongs to the Choir in Brooklyn,” she said. “Somebody had to take care of the budgets. It’ll be a pity when ashes, ashes, we all fall down.”
    Hers was a grim smile. I saw no pity in her eyes.
    Wilmington ran to me as I got out of the car. Her eyes went wide when she saw my arm, but she didn’t pause to ask questions. “Victor wants you in C&C.”
    “No. Wait,” I said. “What about Rory? What happened to Rory?”
    “He’s gone.”
    “ Gone , gone? Or just gone? Gone where?” You can’t kill a ghost, of course, but you can send him on to nothingness or somethingness with a blessed blade against his will.
    I worried Rory had been sent Elsewhere . He might end up on that big farm in the sky where all the dead dogs go and everything’s strawberry shortcakes and Kool-Aid. I worried more that the old misty wistful had just faded to black,

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