So it wasn't as bad as I thought at first..
Turning around I could still see the door behind me..It had no frame or obvious means of support but it stood there tall and strong just the same. At least I had some link to reality; if you wanted exaggerate and call this place that..
Keeping it's location firmly in my mind for a referance point I set out deeper into the forest..
Although it may have looked like British Columbia in summer, there was plenty of strangeness around to convince me this was no natural wood..
For one thing some of the trees were hollowed out. In the space was fitted a glass case with a glass lid on hinges..Underneath each of these cases hung a hammer and a box of nails. It was obvious what that was for..
Inside each case were several sheets of paper. The paper at the very top of the case was always something about a topic related to Crypto.."Mothman ate my parents" was the title of the one I was currently viewing..
Underneath others had nailed their comments or insights(again, I exaggerate) about that story..
Well, I'd finally found out what a post was...
If I searched; I should be able to find the case where one would be missing..
It soon became clear that there were so many empty glass cases that I'd never be able to single out just one as the one I needed. So much for detective work..
I'd decided to have a seat against a friendly looking tree-trunk and think things through a little further; when a voice said "You'll never find it sitting there, goofball!"
My client had returned..
She was dressed for this forum in a tank-top and hiking shorts, along with the inevitable timberland boots. She leaned herself quite at ease directly against the tree I was sitting under..Staring up at her from this angle it was hard not to be distracted by her....Personality..
"It's about time you showed up" she pouted "I've been waiting here; like; sooo long."
I had some difficulties getting here. " I retorted.."By the way; you didn't happen to mention to anybody that you'd hired me did you?
"Well, only to a few people." She replied " Maybe 30 or so."
I guess that explained the welcome wagon. I could never track all those people down, even if she did remember who they were..
Better tackle the job at hand first..
"So tell me; Ms. Innocence; where exactly is this case where your post went missing?"
"It's right on the other side of the tree you're sitting on!" She laughed..
I tried not to look like it was my first day with my licensce as I brushed myself off and headed around the trunk..
There stood an empty case, like so many others..But this one had large padlock inserted through the handle..
"So who'd lock up an empty case?" I asked her "And why?"
"I don't know why of course; or i wouldn't have hired you..My picture just went missing. Then when I got back here this time there was this lock on it..Only the Mods could do that."
Guess I'd have to talk to these "Mods" then..
And find someone who actually knew how to find them, a guide if you will. I didn't want to ask my client; both of us together would be sitting ducks for whoever wanted me offed..
A brief movement caught the corner of my peripheral vision..
"Look" I said to the not-aptly named Ms. Innocence "I have reason to believe both of our lives are in danger. I need you somewhere close but well hidden. Where in this place could that happen?"
"I could hide in the Chat-Room." She offered "Nobody ever goes there."
" Fine then. I'm going to give you my cell-phone. If there's trouble call my beeper. The numbers' on the phone. Now hurry on along, hon..Time's getting shorter."
I hope you'll come find me soon! She giggled as she sached away..
Honestly. A giggle..
My personal experience tells me that girls who giggle at me cause me nothing but problems, and I had a feeling that I was about to be proven right again..
But back to that movement now that she was gone..
The young man who'd been shadowing me in Index had followed me in here..He was again trying to hide unsucessfully behind a tree that was a little too small to handle the job..
I didn't let on that I'd noticed him yet as I strode in his general direction..
Time for some fun...
End of part five....