Sunday, October 21, 2012

Chapter 95: Addison Pronounces The Sentence

Fri, December 11, 2074 8:02 pm-- 48 King St.; Dorset, Pleasantview

"He knew all along, the greasy bastard! Do you know what he said to me when we were negotiating the lease? He said, 'If a corpse-sniffing dog finds any part of the human anatomy on my family's land, your lease is void.' Just like that. And sure enough, it's the first provision under the waiver of tenant's rights. How his lawyer even wrote that shit with a straight face-- I swear to god Dad, I don't mean to laugh but it is kinda funny. I'm going to crack open his head like an autumn chestnut."

Addison could hear the armchair creaking behind him as Oona bounced up and down like the petulant child that she never stopped being. The fact that she could find a shred of humor in the situation set bright red emergency flares off in his mind. Oona was fostering some kind of masochistic admiration for Horace Goth.

Addison dropped an envelope of fresh polariods into the folder labeled Bennett, C., which was a sub-folder of Goth-Tellerman, I.. If he ever had any doubt about whether Mortimer was grooming his youngest child to continue his research in addition to his eldest, those doubts had all but abated. Isabella was so little when Mortimer died. It did not seem possible. Still, the evidence could not be refuted. There were four acres of pinot noir ripening in the mid-December sun on Tellerman Farm, and Addison had no doubt about what farmer Jean was using for compost. Addison wondered how Isabella could do it. Maybe no one told her the real reason why her big sister put a bullet in her brain.

Addison had been too slow to act, and had sent the wrong person to conduct his business. Period. Horace Goth knew that his aunt and uncle were dumping bodies. Addison knew better. Those bodies were not being dumped; they were being planted. The grave digger dying of blood loss was particularly alarming. He slammed the filing cabinet drawer shut.

"So handle it," he said. Oona folded her arms over her chest. Kelly's eyes followed Addison as he crossed the room and sat down. They had buried as much of Kelly as they could find, but some pieces would remain scattered-- Kelly's eyes on Oona's face, Kelly's lips on Macaulay's. When Conrad languished about the living room covered in fruit punch and laughing off the sugar high, it was Kelly's excess that he was indulging in.

No more mistakes. Addison would see every Goth dead before Arbormoor took another member of his family. Oona licked her bottom lip and shrugged.

"It's under control," she said. Addison looked up at the ceiling. He was past that.

"How much money did we lose," he asked. Oona hesitated, drumming her fingers against her arm.

"Four-fifty. I believe that we were calling it a 'finder's fee'. Then the twelve hundred simoleon deposit." Addison smirked, shaking his head. Over four hundred fifty-one thousand simoleons up in smoke, and that was the least of his problems. He cleared his throat, sending Oona into a minor state of panic. It was a sound that he had conditioned her to associate with the sentencings that followed childhood misdeeds.

"I need those plants returned to the soil and for that, you're going to have to get creative. The Tellermans are facing a criminal indictment for tossing the Tricou plot bodies. J.L. will come knocking. I'll take care of him and the farm. Isabella is where your creativity comes in. Make it clean." The thought of all those kids buried at the House of Fallen Trees never ceased to chill Addison. Jon Smith-Tricou used them and threw away their empty husks like so much waste. Fricorith Tricou's life came at the cost of a hundred Townie lives and in the end, even those failed to save him. Oona tilted her chin up, fastening her gaze.

"Does it die with the Tellermans?" Sometimes, it was as though she could read her father's thoughts. Addison had no way of knowing the answer. There were holes in his understanding that dated back to Bella Goth. Kvornan warned him early on that the mission was a hydra. What he cuts off does not die, but grows ferociously back.

"Well, there's only one way to find out."


  1. Looks like Addison and Oona have their work cut out for them. I wonder if Horace has anything else up his sleeves, or if J.L. and Isabelle are up to the challenge of the Londons. J.L. is probably the most in the dark about the whole situation. Isabelle is pretty smart, but she doesn't seem to have much passion for anything. At this point, I'm going to guess Addison and Oona have the advantage if it comes down to a sheer battle of wills, unless maybe Horace sees fit to further his involvement.

  2. Horace's position is interesting because if he was honest about one thing, it was that he doesn't know what's going on with this plot of land and he doesn't want to know. In his mind, the Tellermans bought the vineyard to dump the bodies which would have probably proven cheaper and more expedient than going through the state procedure of moving unclaimed, unidentified human remains. This motivation makes sense to him. He thought it was a stupid thing to do, and he was obviously convinced that the Tellermans were going to get caught but hey, their corpse-dumping money is just as good as anyone else's. Then Oona comes along shortly before the sale is finalized. What she wants is murky to him at best. Horace knows that her father is not just your friendly neighborhood grocer and is mucho leery. But I think that Oona and Addison are both clear that Horace has no stock in this other than to make a buck. If we're talking about the supernatural attachments to the land, Horace is the most out of the loop. J.L., I think we'll find, is just a kid playing with fire. As for Isabella, that is still to come. ;)