Sam watched them from the kitchen window. A frown crossing his brow. This man seemed to show up just when his sister Aisling needed him to. He wonders who he is and why he is here. He watches the interaction between the man from the forest and him. This man is protecting Aisling even though he doesn't know her. Maybe he should call his wife and have her come. They can stay here with the two of them to ensure that Aisling is safe. After the man runs back into the forest Astila walks over and picks up something from the ground. He then turns to find an angry little lady before him.
" I told you to stay inside. That man is hateful and vengeful. He won't rest now till he causes pain to someone. ." She stares up at him her hair shimmering like fire. Her blue-grey eyes shinning like a turbulent sea. Her skin is even paler now from the encounter. He can see she is trembling though she is trying to hide it. Astila looks at her watching to see how she reacts when he hands her the clue from the spirits.
I found this on the ground where that man was standing do you know what it is?" Holding out his hand for her to see.
She looks at the bone button with a snake carved into it. She backs away. Fear in her eyes and just as she turns she begins to retch.
" Please bury it off my property. I cannot touch it. " she runs into the house. Astila watches wondering if she knows that this is a talisman carved from a dead man's rib. Sam comes out holding a small bag. Inside the bag are salt sage leaves and a small piece of black onyx.
"She says to bury that inside this and make sure it's far from here. " Sam looks at him and asks
"I'm not sure why you're here but I don't get a bad feeling from you. I get a good vibe from you. Will you come back after you bury that. I know my sister in law is strange she just has these quirks. She is a good woman. " Astila looks at this burly man and smiles.
" I don't find her strange at all. I will be back soon don't let her open the door for anyone or go outside till I get back. " with that he gets in his car. He knows the man from before is watching he can feel him. Astila looks up at the sky then closing his eyes he says a fervent prayer.
Oh, Great Spirit I ask you to place a Warrior on all four corners of this land to protect those within.
Oh,Great Spirit may you keep this woman from all evil and block its way. Send a cleansing wind through this land to purge it of all evil.
He takes a sage leaf and lights it letting it burn as he drives away to find a secluded place to bury the pouch.
Inside the house, Aisling and Sam are sitting at the table having tea. She has a small dish of sage burning on the back porch. She has the window open so she can hear if anyone or anything comes by the house.
" Sam call Debra and make sure she is ok, please. Ask if she would like you to bring dinner home." She gets up to check on dinner going about her normal routine. Acting as if nothing is wrong. Sam gets up and goes to the back porch to call his wife. Aisling leans against the sink and closes her eyes.
Dear Heavenly Father keep those in this house safe from all harm. Please keep Astila safe. Let him come back unharmed. Amen.
She does the sign of the cross. Sighing she finished washing the dishes. Waiting for Astila to return. Hoping he does.
Astila finds a secluded area along the river not too far from Aisling's house it's a public access area. He takes a moment to just soak in the beauty of the area. It's a deep and wide section of the river just past a few rapids. It looks like people can put boats in the water here. It's shaded with lots of old trees. He closes his eyes and asks the spirits for guidance as to bury the punch. When he opens them he sees the same two spirits from before. They both are pointing towards an overgrown area that has a small stream feeding into the river. Following their guidance, he comes to a spot just in front of where the two are standing. At the base of a large oak tree. Taking the small shovel he begins to dig. He doesn't get very far before he hit's something. He clears the dirt away and there is a skull. He pulls his phone out and calls 911 to report what he found. While waiting for the police to arrive he goes back to his car and pulls out a small bag. Inside the bag is lavender oil and cotton along with white sage. He knows he will not be able to send the body on its way properly so he soaks the cotton in the lavender oil and burns it. Normally a body would be washed and the lavender oil would be rubbed on the body before being wrapped in cotton ready for burial. Since that is not possible he says a prayer and burns a small lock of the hair from the area of the skull with the cotton sage and oil. Then he goes to the river to cleanse himself. Immersing himself in the water seven times in each direction. By the time he finished the police were there.
He tells the officers about the man hiding in the forest around Aisling's home and gives them the bone talisman. Telling them he doesn't know if it's significant or not.
"So why are you here digging in this area ?" The stout officer asks him suspiciously.
"When I found this talisman it scared Aisling and I wanted to bury it far from her house. So when I saw such a tranquil spot I thought it would be a good place to bury it. I was not expecting to find more bones. " Astila gives the officer his information so that they can reach him if necessary.
"You may go but if possible I would like to have you stay close just in case we need to talk to you again. We will also try to find the man you saw earlier at Aisling's house. With the Appalachian trail going through our town we can get some strange people. Not all of them good people . " just then they hear another officer yell for the sheriff. They have found another body. Astila takes his leave and heads back to Aisling's house.
When he arrived back he is greeted by a very pregnant blonde. She is slightly taller than Aisling with stark blue eyes. Sam comes outside behind her.
" This is Debra Aisling's sister and my wife. This is Astila he is the gentleman that happens to be here when I arrived earlier." He puts his arm around his wife as the three of them enter the house.
When they enter Astila mouth begins to water. The dinner that Aisling fixed smelled delicious. They sit at the table he notices familiar dishes. She has made fry bread with venison stew. He looks at her in amazement as he takes the first bite. It's tastes exactly like his grandmother's. Seeing the look on his face Sam bursts out laughing.
"She is an amazing cook. She has learned to make dishes from all of the elders in the family. So I hope you like it." Sam has almost finished his plate so that he can get seconds.
" It's delicious, it reminds me of my grandmother's cooking." Astila smiles at Aisling. The four of them continue their meal in silence.