If you haven’t read the other parts you can find them here:
As light from the weak sun filtered through the window of the room, Michael rose and woke the other men. He gathered them in the back corner where he was certain they could not be heard from the bugs in the room. He explained to them just what was going to happen.
He told them what Kali had said and showed them the potion that one of them would be drinking to save his life. Roger was the most vocal and had to be calmed down several times by the others. It only confirmed Michael’s earlier thoughts about who was going to escape.
His other three friends agreed after some debate. Roger was in a bit of a snit because of their assessment of his character, but that quickly passed. He was more than happy to take the potion and live. He was more of the coward than the others and was not ashamed to say it. The men watched as Roger drank the potion, their fates sealed.
The five men shook hands and then hugged the way men do. Saying goodbyes and trying not to think of what was to happen. Soon they heard stirring on the other side of the door. The Purrs, Kali included, came through the door and took each of the men’s hands. As Kali’s soft firm hand held Michael’s, he looked down upon her beautiful small head and whispered just one word.
Kali nodded her head quickly and squeezed his hand. A gong sounded from somewhere inside the manor and the Purrs led the five men out the door. Michael looked at his friends and gave them a brave grin.
“Let’s do this friends!”
They all smiled at Michael and followed Kali and the other Purrs as they were led to their bitter futures. As Roger passed through the door last he vowed to be as brave as his friends and do them justice once he got home. He had a fantastic story to tell everyone!
The Purrs led them into a huge room in which were seated Catfranka and Silkis. Both sat at the end of a huge table, laden with plates of food the like the men had never seen before.
“Welcome” said Catfranka as they entered. “Please be seated, we have a wonderful breakfast for you and we are honoured to have you as our guests.”
Michael glanced about and took in the scene, which in his mind was akin to the last supper. The men sat and Michael glanced up at Silkis who looked his malevolent best back at him.
“Please help yourself, Silkis and I have already eaten” Catfranka purred to them.
The men looked about at the feast before them, each was feeling ravenous since they had last eaten. Grabbing the nearest plate they began…
Roger awoke in the forest. His head aching from lying on a rock and his body shivering from the cold. He had no idea where he was or how he got there.
The cold spurred him to get up and start moving. First he checked himself over to see if he was all intact. Everything seemed to work he thought. He was more surprised to find himself dressed in his own clothes.
Taking stock of his location, which was a mystery to him, he could hear in the distance the sound of traffic so made his way towards where the sound was coming from.
As he stumbled through the bush, which grabbed at him and tore at his clothes, he was trying to put together the events of the past forty-eight hours, or was it twenty-four, he couldn’t remember how long they had been at the Manor. He was determined to get home, report the incident and rescue his friends.
In the intervening weeks Roger told his tale to a number of people who listened sympathetically to him. He was referred to a number of doctors for psychiatric assessment and at one stage the police thought about charging him with the murder of his friends.
He spent time in a hospital, receiving treatment but nothing would change his story of the five men who went to Kagir Manor and only one who returned. His story was reported in the papers and made for fantastic news. Eventually labeled a mad man Roger was soon the joke of the town.
To put the town at rest the police went to Kagir Manor and interviewed the owner, the philanthropic Mrs. Katrina Franka a lady well known throughout the entire district for her generosity towards the town and every charity who asked her for her assistance.
Kagir Manor had been in the Franka family for generations and she and her brother Sidney Franka managed the estate. They employed a number of town people and were always on the guest list for any function that was being held within the town.
The police were assured the men had never been to the Manor and a search of the grounds failed to turn up any evidence to suggest otherwise. The matter was soon forgotten.
Roger however never forgot and every time he went to the post office the poster on the wall of the missing men reminded him of a time that was still real to him. In particular one poster haunted him: “Missing: Michael Morrey”
This story has been collaboration between Jackie at To Breathe is to Write and Michael at Morpethroad.
It began when we realised our Friday Fictioneer stories
had a common ground and decided to try our hand at writing a story from this base. So this is the fruit of our labours, a lot of fun and always a pleasant exercise.
This is the final part of our story. Thank you to all who stuck with us to the end. We hope you have enjoyed our tale.