Abreaction and Meditation. Emily was standing in front of the flame red door. Finding Vidya Alley had been surprisingly easy. A few minutes earlier, as she’d walked toward the door – clearly spotted at the end of the alley – she’d been puzzling over how, in all the years living in the area, she’d never noticed the alleyway before. It’s amazing what you can miss, when you’re not looking for it, she’d thought. As she raised her hand, about to touch the gold coloured knob, neatly centred in the middle of the door, it clicked open. The door continued to gently swing inwards and now, beyond it, she could see a softly lit hallway. There was no one there to greet her, and yet, after seeing the soft light, and now smelling the sweet incense, she decided to step forward.
Tucked into the right hand corner of the L-shaped hallway, sat a grandfather clock, it was gently ticking; the pendulum swinging, right to left, right to left: tick, tock, tick, tock went the hypnotic sound. Just in front of the clock, and somehow slightly out of context, there sat a small terrier type dog: quite scruffy and unkempt looking, and in that way dogs do, when they’re trying to work something out: a sound or something they’ve seen, its head was turned slightly to the right; he sat very still, completely unmoving.
As Emily stared at the dog, it sat so still, she began to wonder if it was a stuffed toy. But then, as if seeming to want to clear up her confusion, the little dog stood up, walked away from her, retreating further into the house. She looked on after it, slightly sad – thinking that might be the end of the encounter – when it suddenly stopped, turned around, and looked back at her.
After a few moments, and a slight wag of its tail, the dog walked off turning into the entrance of an adjoining room. Emily, perhaps foolishly, decided to take that as an invitation to follow, she glanced behind her, noticing that the front door was now closed. It had closed so gently and silently, she hadn’t felt, or heard a thing.
The entrance, through which the little dog had disappeared, was covered by a beaded curtain. Emily couldn’t see what lay beyond the curtain and so allowed her curiosity to pull her into the room.
On entering, the first thing she noticed, was a man sitting on a cushion in the centre of the room. There was absolutely nothing else in the room except a small incense burner and a similar cushion placed opposite him. The man appeared to have his eyes closed. He had very short hair and was wearing loose, saffron coloured, robes. She thought to herself, oh bollocks, it’s a fucking Buddhist.
“Hello Emily,” said the man, “I see you’ve met Lord Harry, and no, I’m certainly not a Buddhist, the reason I wear these robes is because they’re practical and comfortable, and I like the colour.”
Two things popped instantly into her mind: How the fuck did he know my name and who the fuck is Lord Harry?
“Lord Harry is the little fella sitting next to you who showed you in, and no, I’m not reading your mind, I just have excellent timing is all.”
She looked down, and sure enough, there was the curious little dog.
“That doesn’t explain how you know my name though, does it?” said Emily, “That’s a bit creepy by the way, and actually, now I come to think of it, this whole experience so far has been a bit creepy,” – I was warned, she thought – “and why don’t you have a phone, everybody has a phone, and how did you know my name?”
“So many questions girl, come, sit as I am, here, opposite me.”
The Locksmith, she’d assumed this must be who she was now talking to, indicated with his hand that she should sit on the small cushion opposite; she did as he requested; placing her bag on the floor; crossing her legs. Lord Harry, the little terrier dog, came over and curled up next to her; she felt instantly at ease, after everything that had happened to Emily, she was ready to be now.
Taking her attention for a moment, a single, white tendril of smoke, spiralled out of the copper incense burner, in front of her. She began to notice the soft lighting now, and wondered where the source of the light was. There were no lamps, wall or ceiling lights she could easily discern, and yet there was light; a calming, soothing light; it seemed to shift and change like the Northern Lights she’d heard so much of. Emily found herself becoming very relaxed, she dreamily heard the Locksmith telling her to notice her breathing, and how the in-breath felt: cool and relaxing; how the out-breath calmed. Her eyelids became so very, very heavy, she felt so relaxed and calm now, and then the unexpected warmth of that salty tear, as it slowly tracked its way down her cheek.
What on earth is happening to me, she thought.
To be continued…