Bethany takes a shred, looks at it closer. "Scissors, you say? It could be the child, or..."
Decisively, she walks out, with the intention to go upstairs and investigate who is doing all this and playing her. The medium is fuming. "I'll be right back. Don't touch anything suspect in the meanwhile. Keep them busy with questions if you must. About the future, perhaps, if they claim to know it, but do take their answers with a grain of salt."
If someone is hidden in this house, making up answers is likely to distract them. Who could it be, though? Her brothers? It must be her brothers.
Bethany ducks under the waving threads, goes through the door, and turns around to see what’s behind the lintel.
It isn’t a crab than clings upside-down to the ceiling, barely a foot from Bethany's face. It isn’t a segmented worm. Not a headless armored fish, not a centipede. The glistening-wet, reddish-black flattened body presses close to the ceiling, surrounded by hundreds of twitching little cilia, four black paddle-shaped legs, and beyond that, a spreading patch of damp. From a ragged opening at one end of the body project a circle of white knife-life bits of bone or shell that might serve as teeth. Around them bloom an anemone of waving red strips, and several long, almost invisible threads that drift in the doorway.
It isn’t until the cab is pulling away that Lenora sees him again. The man hidden in the great coat. Standing in the pouring rain, watching, from the other side of the street. His head turns, following her cab as it drives away.
The rain is pouring as hard as ever by the time she gets back to Aaron’s apartment.
"Oh my sweet Lord almighty, what- what is--"
Bethany falls on her ass, her hands forcing a scream to stay inside her throat, and she wildly crawls back, gets back up, ignores the sting of her scarred heels to run back to the rest of the group. She's obviously afraid and confused. "No no, oh sweet Jesus", she stutters, gesturing widely and pointing to the ceiling, "d-don't touch anything, DON'T! There's, there's a-a-"
He's there again!
Lenora gestures quickly at the window again, a vain reflex to shoo the figure, but consciously, she wonders if she'll see him at Aaron's place again.
"Sir, if you could make it quick. I have a nice tip waiting to leave my wallet if you do", she suggests, deadpan, staring outside.
"His madness...?" Aaron thinks for a moment before answering. DONTKNOW. A pause. RELEASEDIN1896. Another pause. READMITTEDIN1905. Pause again. DIEDTHATNIGHT. When Aaron finishes, he hears a knock at the door, and gets up to answer. "That must be Lenora."