My main character in my short story, “An Awareness of Evil”, is Amanda McMasters, a psychic, living in the small town of Milford, Idaho. One day she senses a girl who is horribly frightened of something. As the days go by, the sensations increase and expand until full-blown visions assail her. Suddenly, there is no question in her mind that she knows the girl and finally, she knows where to find her.
I’ve always been drawn to psychics. When I was growing up in Virginia Beach, I made frequent visits to the Edgar Cayce’s Association for Research and Enlightenment. What a fascinating place! Through them I found a local psychic. She didn’t really tell me much that I found to be personal. But the experience of going was half the fun. When my dad was transferred to Florida my senior year of high school, I visited Cassadaga, a small town known for its psychic community. This visit was much more satisfying. The psychic there told me things about myself and about my boyfriend (and future husband), things no one could have known. I was hooked. And though I haven’t been back to other psychics, I have read about them, a lot. When I think of paranormal, a psychic is what comes to mind first.
An Awareness of Evil
inside Mystic Desire
Amanda McMasters is a psychic living in small town, Idaho. Far from the usual episodes where she can sense a person needing help, Amanda is suddenly thrown into full-blown visions of a little girl who feels threatened. She feels the girl’s terror, sees the poor state of her home, and smells strange and awful things—like the blood pooled around her mother and the faint whiff of a body beginning to decompose. With the help of her visions and Detective Brendan Gilchrist, Amanda races to save the little girl before she meets her mother’s fate.
“There’s not much more frightening to a child than hearing a parent cry.” Amanda McMasters clutched her purse in her lap and tried to keep from twisting her hands. She stared at the nameplate on the front of the desk. Det. Donny Connor. He looked older than the other detective and probably had more experience but she wished she were speaking with the younger guy, doodling as he listened to her and his partner. He sat sideways to his desk with the chair pushed back onto two legs, looking as though he hadn’t a care in the world. But something told her that he heard every word.
“I can imagine,” Detective Connor said in a low voice. He seemed as though he were trying to sound soothing but a note of frustration hit between his words. “And so, you heard someone crying.”
Detective Connor blew out a breath, laid his pen on the desk and then picked it up again. “Ms. McMasters, you’ve been trying to tell us what’s up for the past fifteen minutes. Why don’t you just say it and let us decide what’s important or not?” The detective looked to his partner sitting at the next desk. Detective Gilchrist gave him a bare nod. So far, that was the most interaction she’d seen from him.
Amanda took a deep breath and braced herself to tell the men what she’d been trying to avoid. “I don’t actually hear crying.”
“You don’t actually hear—”
“More like I sense it.”
The detective slowly placed the pen on his desk again. “You sense it.”
Detective Connor stretched his arms and folded his fingers behind his head. “So you don’t see the person crying. You don’t hear anyone crying. You don’t actually see a child.”
“That’s right.” She knew what was coming but knowing didn’t diminish the frustration. Or the pain in once again not being believed. “I’m something of a psychic.” She hadn’t meant to sound small, but that’s how it came out anyway.
Detective Connor dropped his hands to the desk and jerked the pen off the notepad. “You’re psychic.”
“I see. And you’re sensing that this child you can’t see or hear is frightened.”
“I know it.”
“Okay, where is this child? We’ll be sure to check it out, won’t we Brendan?”
Now Amanda didn’t bother trying to keep her hands still. She squeezed her fingers and released. Squeezed and released. “I don’t know.”
“Ms. McMasters, what exactly do you expect us to do? You don’t have any idea of who the kid is or how we can find it.”
“Her. I’m sure it’s a little girl crying.” She shook her head and narrowed her brows in worry. “I don’t know. I thought maybe you’d had a report of a domestic disturbance or something I might be able to draw on. I’ve been sensing her for two days now. It’s getting worse. She’s scared and I don’t know how to help her.” Her voice had risen to the point that people at desks around them had stopped to look. Amanda took another deep breath. “Look, I’m sorry. If I had more information, I’d tell you. But I can’t keep this to myself anymore.”
“Can’t keep what to yourself, miss? You haven’t told us anything.”
“Amanda McMasters,” murmured the other detective. “I think I’ve heard that name before. Have you been involved in another police case?
“Yes, last year in Spokane.” She had lived there until moving the eighty or so miles to Milford, Idaho. Once she had helped the Spokane police solve the murder case, she’d lost all privacy. People called morning, noon, and night asking for help in finding everything from lost dogs to lost keys. Or worse, more lost children. The stories had broken her heart and the constant requests had destroyed her peace. When her landlord told her she’d have to move or control the numbers of people banging on her door, she had little choice but to leave the Washington town. She’d chosen a smaller place in the more rural neighboring state. The last thing she needed now was to have the same problem start up again.
“I remember now. The boy lost in the state park. You located him just as he was on death’s door.”
“I am blessed with a gift, or maybe it’s a curse. But I’m not making anything up,” she said defensively.
“I believe you,” the younger detective said, meeting her gaze.
Mystic Desire, a supernatural anthology from Black Velvet Seductions is available for pre-order until October 1.
Dee S. Knight: An Awareness of Evil
Zia Westfield: Bewitching the Wolf
Lora Logan: Calling All Angels
Callie Carmen: Dream Catcher
Anne Krist: Life Saving
Patricia Elliott: Love from the Mist and also Love Knows No Apocalypse
Carol Schoenig: Love that Binds
R.M. Olivia: Love’s Ghost
Richard Savage: The Anniversary
Suzanne Smith: The Mortal Vampire
Alice Renaud: The Sweetest Magic of All
Jan Selbourne: Through the Veil
Breanna Hayes: Unconditional Lust
About the Author
A few years ago, Dee S. Knight began writing, making getting up in the morning fun. During the day, her characters killed people, fell in love, became drunk with power, or sober with responsibility. And they had sex, lots of sex. Writing was so much fun Dee decided to keep at it. That’s how she spends her days. Her nights? Well, she’s lucky that her dream man, childhood sweetheart, and long-time hubby are all the same guy, and nights are their secret. For romance ranging from sweet to historical, contemporary to paranormal and more join Dee on Nomad Authors. Contact Dee at email@example.com.