Aisling knew that Astila was her soulmate almost as soon as she met him. So much has happened since they met. This last month after the hand fasting has been wonderful being able to get used to each other's habits and different customs. His family will be arriving again in a few days this time not just Inola and Salali are coming but several of the elders from his family. Including his great grandmother. She hopes she likes her. Aisling is excited about getting to know them. She is also worried she will mess up. Though Astila assures her all will be ok. Sam and Astila went to Washington to pick up her trunks from his friend . She hopes they have not been damaged in any way. There really isn't time to shop for new clothes . She hears a sound in the attic . She heads up to see what it was. It's starting to get chilly out she hopes that squirrels or mice have not come in. Going up the step putting her hand on the knob. She notices it is ice cold. A very strange feeling comes over her. In the back of her mind she hears. Go back down stairs. Do not enter. She does as the feeling guides. As soon as she is in the kitchen she gets some dried white sage and rosemary. She decides to cleanse the house just to be safe. Starting from the basement up. Going to the basement she lights the herbs and goes to every corner saying a prayer to place the intent.
"Negative energy that invaded my sacred space
I banish you by the lords holy grace
You have no power here
I face you with out any fear
Begone from my sacred space for you are uninvited and must obey." She repeats this in every corner of every room of the house. When she gets to the attic door it's normal temperature. Everything feels normal to her now. So she goes in and does the cleansing of the room. Going back to the kitchen she gets sweet grass and lavender braided around a san Palo wood she lights it and follows her steps from before. This time she is charging the house with positive energy to ensure peace and tranquility.
Starting the chant in every corner
"Oh Heavenly Father flood my home with light and love. Light every corner and every dark place with your sacred love.
Let no uninvited spirit of person enter here.
Keep all that enter in your Devine grace ." She continues through every room. By the time she is finished Astila and Sam have arrived. They brought several others with them. She goes out to meet them.
"Aisling this is my friend Chris from the museum. He brought his team with him he wanted to meet you." Astila introduces them. Aisling gets a not so good vibe from one of the assistants. It's a young man with dark red hair and green eyes. He seems to be looking around like he is an appraiser not a guest. She asks Chris about him.
"Oh that's Jay he comes from a small town in Tennessee. He is a little on the backward side but he is very good at his job. " he looks at her wondering if he offended her in any way. Aisling takes them into the dining room to bring dinner in. Astila sees that she is uncomfortable
"Aisling I'm sorry I should have called you first."
" it's not that it's just that before you came in there was a very cold negative energy in the house. I did a smudge of the whole house. Then right after I finished you guys showed up. That guy there is giving me a negative vibe. Since he was invited I can't banish the negativity till he leaves." She is very agitated not understanding why. Astila knows he has to get dinner over so that they can get the energy rebalanced. While they are eating John shows up. He just like always walks in. Staring at the young man. You would have thought he was looking at a ghost. Astila notices this right away. He knows that even if John doesn't acknowledge it that he also has a discerning gift. Aisling stands up and immediately gets him a plate and sits him beside the young man. They begin to chat about what brought them here. Chris speaks up.
"I went to school with Astila and then into the military with him. I work at the museum. He brought me the clothes that they want to use for the wedding to be cleaned. I just had to meet his wife. He was always so serious that I figured he would always be single. That and I wanted to ask the owner of the clothes if she would be willing to donate them to the museum. If not at least let us borrow them. He also told me you have Native American items of that are quite exquisite as well. " John doesn't like the man sitting beside him he is oozing resentment. Looking at Jay wondering why he would resent Aisling.
"Hmm they are hers to do as she wishes but sending them to you to be properly cleaned is the first time they have ever left these premises. They are very special to our family. " John looks at Jay and asks him about himself.
"I am from Gatlinburg Tennessee my family is from there as well. Though my great grandfather was from this area. He actually had several women in my town. With whom he impregnated. Several times actually. Though he never married any of them. Since he already had a wife and children. So his nine children in my town were raised by their mothers alone and in shame. They say I look like him. I wouldn't know since he died before my grandmother was born. " John looks at him carefully and wonders why he would bring up something like that. The man pulls out an emerald shamrock and begins to tap the table. John looks at it . It's similar to the ones Aisling and Astila used in the hand fasting ceremony. The tapping is annoying but you can tell it's a nervous tick the young man has. Aisling decides to question him further.
"I know how hard it can be to be raised in a time when it was shameful to have children out of wedlock. I lived with the stigma of it all my life because of my father. I'm sorry for your family to have to deal with that. The fault though still goes back to those involved. Not those who were the product of those relationships. You say he was married and had three other women besides. Though I feel bad for the children of those women. If they knew he was married or had other women then they should have thought about the children that they had. You say these women had more they one child by him. That is very irresponsible of all involved. When did the wife find out? What did she do?" Aisling asked these questions but her agitation was very clear. The young man stopped tapping and looked at her. His look was one of humor. He begins to laugh.
"Oh Miss Aisling you do get worked up easily. My grandmother told me that he worked hard to take care of all four families but that he died alone on his way back to his wife. She said that his wife had no idea till the cops contacted her. Then when she went through his things she found pictures of the others. They were poor barely able to survive as well. So there was nothing she could do for them. She was pregnant at the time also. I heard that he was from here . So I thought maybe I would try to find out about them while working in Washington. He looks around not really paying attention to much just trying to get them to stop with the questions.
"Oh do you know the family name ? Up until recent years this was pretty small area. Everyone knew everyone else." John asks him.
"It was Hawkins that's all I know. I tried at the court house already but they don't have any records past the early forties because of a fire. I tried the state birth records but they said at the time he would have been born it was not unusual for births not to be registered. So I am at a dead end. " he sighed looking at John feeling like he may know something.
"Oh one of our family names is Hawkins. There were several brothers that came with my great great grandmother from Ireland. They lived here for awhile then all but her moved away, maybe there is no record because they may have been born in Ireland and just lived here for awhile. " Aisling lets him know. She has a bad feeling about this man and does not want him to try to lay claim to anything unless she is sure. He knows that what was in the trunks is worth money. Wondering if he is just trying to get money or something else. She feels a shift in the house. It's getting very uncomfortable in it. She notices that this man seems to be amused by the turn of the conversation. Astila looks at Chris and asks him if they can see the clothes now that dinner is over. Chris's assistants move to start getting them out of the trunks. First is Aisling's wedding dress.
"It is a canary yellow silk it was not white. So there actually was very little yellowing from age. She goes to the other room with one of the female assistants to try it on. The dress if a perfect fit. The beading Is gorgeous Aisling loves the dress the girl looks at her.
"Your stunning in this. It's so amazing how well the clothes have withstood all this time. Close to a hundred years and it's still like new. " she gushed over her Astila knocks on the door to see if they are ready. Aisling walks out and everyone gasps at how beautiful she is in the dress. She looks at her groom and giggles. He is in the suit from the trunk. It looks perfect on him. The man jay from earlier lets out a whoa . They turn to him. He shows them the painting that was in the bottom of the trunk. They could pass for the couple in the painting. John lets out a oh my. When he sees it. Everyone in the room begins to laugh as the atmosphere seemed to lighten some. The couple go to change out of the clothes so that they don't get messed up. Aisling tells Chris she will think about what he has asked but not until after the wedding. They all say good night. Finally Astila and Aisling are alone. They get ready for bed when a loud noise shakes the house. Going to look where it's coming from. They head to the attic.