Session XXV

Monsoons come and we decide it is time to leave before Mr. Ho’s mens come, as well. Constance stays behind to make sure we did not overlook anything in the warehouse. Not sure of what to do with Tsu Tsi, we send her to a safe house with Jún and Jié. We trust them because of their relationship to Minh, and we send the three off into the storm. We may never see the three of them, again.

We return to the junk to await for Constance’s return and to see if Alice has returned from her meeting with Mr. Lin.

Deep in the night, I awake to hear Tsu Tsi singing on the foredeck. She is staring at the horizon. I sit down to brush her hair. She is holding a small box. She offers me lunch in perfect English. Spiders and beetles flood out in unreasonable number. I wake up.

Unable to sleep, I pace the belowdecks with a bottle of alcohol until Eldrich awakens. I offer him a drink and he exclaims that it is terrible. It was fine a moment ago. He hears a noise in the galley.When I go to investigate I find that Alice is in the kitchen. She’s not “right,” speaking out of character and wearing completely unfamiliar fashion. We speak for a bit until she’s not Alice. She rips my heart from my chest and changes into Mr. Standford. I set fire to the ship.

I wake up and go stand on the deck in the cool evening, intent on not sleeping again for the evening. The entire night passes endlessly until the doctor awakens me in my bunk, my hand full of splinters. I refuse to talk to anyone and return to the deck. I pull the splinters from my hand. Constance brings me a stiff drink for the morning and I douse my hand with it and convince myself with the pain that I am in fact awake this time.

The Luxuriant Goddess sails past us on the river. Fifteen minutes later it sails back in the opposite director.

Constance brings me breakfast and I ask if she can discover what is five minutes upstream. It is a wide, deep spot where ships can turn around. English ships are a rare, but not uncommon sight.

We go to Mr. Lin’s house to attempt to retrieve Alice. At the manor, we learn that Mr. Lin has been murdered. Not only that, but the witness was also murdered and Alice has been implicated as the assailant. We speak to Mr. Lin’s reading girl who relays all of this to us, in an exceptionally dramatic, but wooden performance. They will not, however, let us in the building.

Investigating the door where she supposedly fled, we find only tracks of her arrival, not her departure. As we are milling about the side door, we hear an engine roar to life around the back of the building. Dr. Welsley witnesses a car speeding away, containing several guards, a driver, the reading girl, and Mr. Lin. We steal Mr. Lin’s other vehicle and lend chase.

The chase culminates in a firefight and car crash in the final approach to the airport. Once his car flips over, Mr Lin immediately surrenders. I believe from here on out he will be far more forthcoming and trustworthy. We discover Alice in the trunk of the car, battered and bruised, even before the car accident.

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Session XXV

Deborah-CoC Kacey3