“You did what?”
Rebecca stared at Oscar horrified.
He stared back, apologetic but determined. “I told Lydia we shouldn’t hang out with her as much any more,” Oscar repeated.
Rebecca continued to stare at him, her dark eyes wide in shock.
“Oscar. Oscar! You are such a jerk! Why, why would you say something like that to her?” She stared up at him, the force of her glare strong enough to make him falter mid-thought.
When the idea had first occurred to Oscar- that he and Rebecca needed to distance themselves from their best friend Lydia- it had sounded sane and reasonable. After all, Lydia had thrust them, unwittingly but still, had thrust them right into the middle of a spiritual battle between angels and demons which had almost cost them their lives.
The ranch house, or The House Of Horrors as Oscar always referred to it, was seared into his memory like a nightmare that he would never escape. When he and Rafe had gone to find the keys to the truck, Oscar had walked right into a room filled with such unimaginable things that he had almost passed out right where he stood. To even think that Rebecca and he had been that close to meeting the same fate as those poor people in the room… well, he just couldn’t let that happen. The only way to avoid that fate was to avoid Lydia herself. He had imagined that Rebecca had probably felt the same way.
Turns out, he was wrong.
Rebecca took a deep breath and blew it out slowly. “Oscar, Rebecca is like my sister. She’s involved in some freaky stuff, yes, but she didn’t ask for any of it- it just happened. She needs our help! We can’t just desert her because we’re scared of what is coming!” She looked up at him pleadingly, willing him to understand.
Well, he did understand. That didn’t mean he could stomach the thought of Rebecca being held captive by demons again, though.
He reached forwards and wrapped his hands gently around her face. He felt her soft skin under his rough rock-climbers fingers. The terror he felt about the House Of Horrors was nothing compared to the terror he felt when he thought about losing her.
Leaning forward and resting his head against hers, he whispered, “Beccy, I just can’t. I can’t live through that again. I can’t lose you.”
Her hands reached up and lightly rested on the back of his neck, her fingers twining in the ends of his hair.
“I know it was horrible,” she said softly. “I still can’t sleep very well. I keep seeing that man, both of them actually, every time I close my eyes.” He felt rather than saw her shudder in revulsion and fear. Her arms tightened around his neck and Oscar crushed her close, burrowing his face in her silky hair.
Unreasonably or not, they would have to avoid Lydia for a while.