Subsection: Wednesday 2 October 2019 Up Section: 1.04 The Road to Doomsday Subsection: Friday 4 October 2019 

Thursday 3 October 2019

The residents of Fox Creek go to work at a reasonable sort of time. No children visibly leave, though.
Jesus hears that people have been seeing ghosts… at the Oakleaf Town Center, the mall across the highway from Fox Creek. He calls one of the numbers he’s been given; it’s a fellow who works at Home Depot, who was locking up the lawn tractor department when he saw someone sitting on one of them; with a closer look it seemed to be a bare skeleton, which he could partly see through. Jesus arranges to meet him and a few others who’ve seen things for lunch.
Natasha calls the local junior high, and asks whether she can come and talk to someone working in the biology department – and whoever she’s talking to is clearly having a good day, because they’re happy to invite her in.
Jesus meets the shop workers - one Five Guys shift manager, one security guard - and they tell similar stories, of a figure spotted doing some kind of normal thing while the shop was closed, like queuing for a burger or taking A/V components off a rack, which then turned out to be a translucent skeleton.
Home Depot guy has seen a few people from the estate - only women, now that he thinks about it, and they tend not to buy high-end lawn tractors.
The air definitely got colder when the ghosts were around, even by Florida air-conditioning standards, though they don’t seem to have moved anything.
The security guard reckons he might be able to square Jesus and team getting on site, as long as there’s some kind of plausible-looking business arrangement. They haven’t talked to management, because people get fired for drug offences all the time.
Juan takes a walk through Home Depot; he doesn’t detect any supernatural strangeness. There’s a board with jobs offered and wanted, but there doesn’t seem to be any landscaping or similar heavy work wanted in Fox Creek.
Natasha goes to the school; it’s pretty informal. It turns out that every child in Fox Creek is being home-schooled. At least since about six months ago. All the paperwork is in order. Before then, there was never any more than the usual amount of trouble, which isn’t much round these parts. When the children were taken out, the parents didn’t say anything about evolution, godliness, or any of the usual trigger phrases.
That evening, Jesus (with fresh business cards) goes along with the others in tow to give a “free estimate” for his “extermination business”. Natasha looks for undead spirits, and there are quite a few; the strongest concentration is off to the west, towards the estate, but there are plenty in the mall area, concentrated round “guy” things like power tools and tech toys.
Natasha tries to communicate with one of them; he’s somewhat confused, but with some help is able to identify himself as Andy Webster. (There’s a Zara Webster among the divorcees.) The last thing he remembers is lying down on a table in the house church, which seemed like a really good idea for some reason, and then it all gets suddenly hazy. There was a lot of plastic sheeting put down… He’s not sure of the date, but it was spring, and from other things he remember it sounds like this year. He hasn’t met any other… whoa, that dude’s a skeleton. Whoa, I’m a skeleton. Julie Taggart, she of the house church, had already moved in when the Websters did.
Natasha briefs the security guard: yes, there are ghosts. They may want revenge on the people who killed them. And there are TVs left on all night; Natasha considers making them visible to the undead, which might attract them into one place.
(15 July 2020 – “Two Octaves Deeper”)
Natasha considers what little she knows about demons. As far as rumour has it, they always want a specific thing – blood, terror, worship…
Natasha looks into rendering all the cartridge primers inside the estate inert, to disarm the defenders; that enchantment can be put on a charm, to be dropped and broken by a drone.
 Subsection: Wednesday 2 October 2019 Up Section: 1.04 The Road to Doomsday Subsection: Friday 4 October 2019