Annette didn't hear Mark's promise of her impending doom. She didn't to. The look she saw on his face said more thanany words he may say. She saw before her a man willing to chase her to his own death if necessary in order to rid himself of her. And she was in no doubt he would go there.
Mark's dark demonic soul had taken control of him and the shattered remains of his former self lay at the bottom of a deep, dark pit of evil and malice. His mind roamed an area nobody dared dream existed and his demons fed upon the evil which he planned for Annette at the end of their struggle. Only he knew when, how and where the end would come and he was being driven by the darkest desires for revenge. A desire he had let fester since his betrayal.
The silence between the friends was palpable as none wanted to speak as they got in the car. Mark's uttered promise for revenge had scared the group as the stunned silence grew in the car. He made it clear he had every intention of chasing the witch, Annette, and bringing her to task for the results of her actions and the destruction of his soul. The nervous breakdown had forced his mind to the darker reaches of his psyche'. To go to areas of the mind which men of all eras had questioned the existence of and Mark now lived among the demons of his mind; to the horror of his friends, he appeared to thrive in the darkness of his damaged soul.
The car moved slowly away from the abbey as the drizzle turned to rain, making visibility hard and driving treacherous, over the lashing rains and in the fading light the monsters movements became audible as they smelt Annette’s blood on the air and snorted with delight at the thought of fresh meat. The coldness outside the car did not compare to the chills the passengers felt, trying to come to terms with what Mark was changing into or had he changed already?
Rachel sat on the back seat with Phil beside her, crying on his shoulder and shivering with horror, Mark sat rocking to and fro in the passenger seat, head down and chanting his mantra, “I will end this one way or the other, Annette,” over and over to the point of distraction; beside him in the driver’s seat P.A. peered into the gloom and wondered what Mark had planned. Unknown to them Mark was not on some revenge driven crazed drive; he was meticulously planning each stage to leave no room for the slightest error.
None of them knew what to do or say to Mark; or how this new persona which they feared, would react. The car hadn’t travelled far before Rachel spoke, “Can you stop the car, please?” she asked through her tears and as the car drew to a halt by the side of the road, she continued, “you aren’t going to leave Annette out in the cold with those creatures closing in and ready to feast are you, Mark?”
Mark turned to look at Rachel’s tear stained face and replied, “You recall my sense of irony, I told her the location of a cave nearby with bandages and ointment for her wounds,” he paused for a few second and continued, “IF she can get to the cave.”
Phil became aware of an underlying evilness in Mark’s tones which he had never heard and shivered as he asked, “Do you think she can get to the cave?”
Mark glanced up at the abbey as it slowly faded from sight in the rain and replied, “Rachel, when you rescued me; how far would you estimate I was able to walk?”
She shivered with the cold and horror of recalling the rescue from the castle wall and replied, “I would estimate in the condition you were in when I arrived, no more than a car’s length.”
P A sat quietly listening to the conversation and pondering over Mark’s statement before he got in the car, “Mark, what did you mean when you said you feared no evil as you have the biggest guns and you will end the torment one way or another?”
Mark glanced back to his former mentor and said, “What do YOU think I meant?”
P A replied, “From your tone, I would assume you intend to take the battle as far as you need and to rid yourself of Annette’s presence; once and for all.”
Mark gave a gentle nod before he said, “I hope this is your answer and to do this I need to go to her realm and fight on her terms.”
While Mark wiped the blood and dirt off his hands, Rachel asked, “Do you think you can win?”
Mark turned to his old friend and replied, “Win or lose, I am left with little choice, Rachel, I need to cleanse my soul of her presence and the battle requires me to beat her on her terms for total victory or …”
Phil shuddered in the seat as he thought about Mark’s pause, “Don’t think about losing, Mark, you are able to beat worse than her but after tonight we’re worried about your sanity.”
Mark gave him a wicked grin and winked before he said, “Better the devil you know, than one you don’t.”
Rachel commented, “You crystalised our worries, Mark; we don’t recognize you any more; which is scary.”