The Board – Part 7
Aidan’s dreams were becoming stranger. The details were clearer, and when he woke, they made him feel uneasy. First, it was an image of his sick mother, but then perspective changed to how she viewed him. He was suddenly viewing from her eyes, looking up at himself as he gazed down onto her frail body. There was a glow around her, and the warmth made him feel calm, but just as soon as he felt serene enough to relax into a fitful rest, the glow turned to fire. He felt his mother scream as she saw him engulfed in the blaze.
He jumped out of his sleep, a cold sweat across his forehead and dripping down his back. As he regained his grip on reality, he realized his cell phone was ringing. A glance at the clock revealed it was only 2 AM, but he knew he needed to answer it.
“Hello?…Yeah…yes, sorry I was sleeping…ok…yes,” Aidan said quietly to the caller.
The folders that sat in front of each member of the board were thick, and Horatio’s explanation was that the festival needed to be adjusted in light of recent events, specifically because of the last person to occupy Aidan’s seat.
“As you can see, there is concern about a few things this year,” Horatio began. “Since Pamela’s…departure…our security measures need tightening.”
Lucien asked, “Is there evidence of a leak?”
“Well, Pamela did speak with that reporter. She tried to confess her embezzlement scheme, which is what got her here in the first place,” Horatio explained. “She told him about her deal with us…”
Richard, the blue-eyed man in seat five who was typically silent most days, asked, “The reporter was silenced as well, was he not?”
“Of course he was, Richard. You know we are efficient,” Horatio answered with a slight edge. Aidan gathered that the older man didn’t like to be questioned.
“So, what is the problem?” Richard pressed, not seeming to care about Horatio’s annoyance.
Lucien jumped in, “We would detect another leak, right? We would know if more people were involved.”
Horatio nodded, and Aidan noticed him calming down.
Cassidy spoke up. “Were the tapes destroyed?”
“The reporter’s? Of course, they were,” Horatio said. “We near erased the man’s existence. Even his dog was removed.”
Victoria loudly chimed in, “Damn!”
“So, what’s the issue?” Cassidy asked, ignoring the other woman and displaying a little annoyance herself at the whole scenario.
Horatio sighed before answering, “The issue is this.”
In the center of the round table was a device used for conference calls, video chats, and to project information and images during meetings. Horatio pressed a button and a projection of what appeared to be an email engulfed the blank wall to their left.
“The sender’s name is Eremiel. It’s obviously on purpose considering who that is,” Horatio explained.
“Who is that?” Aidan asked after a beat, feeling like he should somehow know who Eremiel was.
Horatio quoted, “’I am the great angel, Eremiel, who is over the abyss and Hades, the one in which all of the souls are imprisoned from the end of the Flood, which came upon the earth, until this day.’”
Bailey quipped, “Heavy.”
Richard spoke up again, “I highly doubt it’s the actual Eremiel but it’s obviously someone trying to make a point.”
“And letting us know they are aware of who runs this place,” Cassidy added.
Aidan laughed nervously. “Angels with emails? Could be true. Demons running insurance companies and all.”
Horatio stared at him for a long moment before saying, “I like you, Aidan. You have a sense of humor.”
Bailey tapped his fingers on the table before leaning back with a smirk.
“We all go through this phase, buddy. You still don’t believe.”
“I believe just fine.”
“Let’s get back to the point,” Horatio interrupted. “Besides reminding us that Heaven has an army and all that, our angelic friend is threatening us. Talk of a purge and reckoning. Quite epic stuff, actually.”
“Horatio, you seem skeptical about the legitimacy of who he says he is,” Lucien said quietly.
Horatio paced the boardroom for a minute before responding.
“I think it’s crap. However, even if it’s some dipshit in IT, no offense Aidan, this person knows too much and must be eliminated. So, be on your guard and anything suspicious should be brought to my attention immediately,” he stated. “If it isn’t, I will assume you are a part of it and your job will be posted as vacant. Aidan, I need you to trace this email back to its source.”