The Mustache Man

Chapter Six


“Two ten and eleven year old boys disappeared during a choir rehearsal one day. They were never found. My ex partner, Detective Robert   lost his career because he believed the choirmaster, Marlston, who told him an incredible tale.”

            “Does this case have a name?”


            Pete Vargas had had enough of Carlton’s strange, cryptic answers. He wanted to go home.

            “You don’t have a home, Mustache Man.”

            “Would you stop doing that?”


            “Breaking into my thoughts.”

            “Old habit. I didn’t think you’d mind.”


            “Because you have the same ability.”

            Pete looked at Carlton. If she was an angel she had been gone too long from a place she yearned to return to but somehow knew wouldn’t take her back, not just yet. Actually Pete didn’t care any longer whether Carlton was an angel working in a place called The Vault monitoring data for odd gaps. He’d seen stranger things and met stranger people.

            “See?”’ said Carlton. “You can do that. I don’t even have to speak to you, do I?”

            Pete shook his head.

            “How long?”

            “Long, long time.”

            “Why not just strip my mind for my story?”

            “Because I’m recording your voice Pete Vargas and sending every word as you speak. Skype.”

            “For who?”

            “For Chance. She knows you won’t let her see you. She wants to get as close to you as she can.”

            “Why won’t they talk to me?”

            “You can see them but they can’t see you. They’re listening.”

            “Why did you do that? I want to hear their voices. I miss them goddamn it, who are you to make decisions for me?”

            “I protect those who interest me.”

            Pete Vargas began to pace. He ascended the ramps with his long stride. Carlton’s voice followed him.

            “You can kiss them with your story but you can’t hurt them. That’s why you left them, didn’t you?
            “People die around me.”

            “They’re waiting for you to explain, Pete, why you disappear.”

            “Then I should begin at the beginning.”

            “Always the best place.”

            Pete sighed. It was a shivery sigh. For a moment the Mustache Man felt   change pull him in a thousand directions. For the first time in his life he resisted the changes. He didn’t disappear. He was talking to Chance again and Jewels and Bert and he couldn’t hurt them. He was safe in The Vault and they were safe from him. He was safe with this young woman who called herself Carlton.

            So he began at the beginning. His birth, who his parents were, the “Place” he’d grown up in until “they” decided to eject him from their midst because his very touch was like hot coals.



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