Picture Perfect 89
“You are right. There isn’t much residual energy of her here. Too much testosterone in this room since she was last here.” Jennifer went to the window. “Is that the tree she liked.” A tall maple dominated the view from the window. “I mean the one behind the maple. That maple wasn’t there when she was here.”
“What about the leaf in the envelope?” Dan asked.
“One of the twins put that there.”
“Seal.” We planted two maples when they were born. We cut one down. But I …I don’t think she had a favourite tree. Paula was more an indoor child. Now that you mention, it I don’t think she had a favourite anything. No dolls or stuffed animals she had to have near her. Same with her clothes. What she wore was never a big thing.”
“Until the Banshees.” Dan said.
“Yes. That last year she became more … I guess the word is ‘aware’ of herself as a woman. She knew how much it aggravated her step-mother as well.”
“She wanted the attention.” Jennifer said. “I doubt if she was a real fan of any band. This one worked. If it hadn’t she might have tried Madonna to get the reactions she wanted.”
“I need a break.” David said and left the room.
“This is a wrap for now.” Brenda said. “Take, say, an hour. I’ll talk with Mr. Morrison and see what’s up.”
The camera crew went downstairs. Brenda motioned Dan & Jen to stay in the room.
“Do you think we’re getting anything here. I mean neither of you seem to be picking up any vibes or clues. No new information.”
“Perhaps not but he does confirm the ineffective way the constabulary dealt with things.” Jennifer said.
“We already know why these children were never found. That isn’t strong enough.”
“So we’re back to stretching things out for 90 minute episodes.” Dan said. “You want me to accuse him of molesting his daughter which forced her to run away.”
“My God.” Jennifer paled. “You mean she might not be one of the victims after all?”
“Abuse is something the RCMP would have suspected. They do that in all cases of missing children.”
“Now they do. Did they back in the eighties?” Brenda asked.
“I’d have to see the actual case file. You know, the files that the division has been unable to locate. I don’t get that vibe from him.”
“I don’t get that from the house either.” Jennifer said. “But the minute you suggested that it give me the sort of chill I get when an ugly truth is revealed. Someone was seriously traumatized in this house. Perhaps this room. But the weird shape of this house does things to energy.”
“He’s right about pyramid power?”
“Oh yes. This shape attracts and channels an energy your average house doesn’t.”
“I’m for talking with him some more.” Dan said. “At least to find out who saw her after she left here. Maybe, she did go the reserve. She’s the oldest of the children that went missing and was clearly more involved in a world outside of the home and school.”
“I’ll talk with Mr Morrison and see how he feels about going on.”
“I’m going to take a stroll around the grounds.” Jennifer said. “Do your eyes only work on photographs?”
“No. It took me a few years after I left the force to stop seeing all rooms as crime scenes. I don’t know if I want to get back into that head set.”
They walked down to the first floor & outside.
“Did you ever wonder why it is your photo eye is so acute?” Jennifer asked. “You’ve had specialized training but you make connections that go beyond training.”
“You suggesting I might have some psychic powers?”
“Strong intuition …”
“I just remembered something.” David Morrison joined them. “Follow me.” They walked over to one of the domes. “When the RCMP decided to follow up on our fears they found her bicycle at her cousins. That’s when they concluded she had run away with them.”
He opened the door into a dome.
It was stacked with plastic storage boxes, chairs, sofas, a covered rack of clothing, gardening equipment. He stepped aside to let camera man into the dome to take a shot of the interior.
“It’s back here. Give me hand with this.” With the help of the other camera person he slid the covered rack away from the wall.
Dan coughed with the dust and left the dome when the dust got into his eyes.
“It’s been decades since I moved anything around this far back in here.” David said.
Dan’s eyes began to water as he sneezed repeatedly.
“You alright.” Jennifer asked him.
For a moment he couldn’t see anything. “I’ll be okay.” He blinked his eyes but they didn’t clear up. “I think I better wash my eyes out. That dust has done a number on them.”
Brenda lead him to the remote truck. “I’ll see if they have any water.”
“Bottled.” Dan said, “I don’t want to risk the well water.”
“How does that feel?” Brenda asked.
“Better. The stinging is gone.” He blinked tentatively. Things were clearer. One of the crew handed him a towel. He carefully dried his face and around his eyes. He could hear coughing and hacking as the others exited the dome.
“Sounds like I’m not the only one.” he said.
“No.” she said. “Everyone had to get out of there thanks to that dust or whatever it is.”
“I hope it isn’t toxic.” He opens his eyes more fully. He took a deep breath. His heart was no longer racing. Cameron was placing a wet cloth over his eyes.
“Fuck!” David sat on the bench beside him. “Sorry about that. I guess there had been some pesticide stored in there. But I did find the bicycle.” He sneezed & his nose began to bleed. “Shit!” He dashed into the house.
“Maybe we should call it a day.” Stephanie said. “I’ll check with Morrison to see if he’s ready to go on.” She went into the house & came back a little later.
“What did Morrison say about continuing the interview?”
“If we can wrap it up today. Seal will be here tomorrow, Wolf the day after. It’s their birthday and this year they’re coming home to celebrate. Neither wants cameras around.”
“Let’s do it then.” Dan said.
He & Jennifer went into the house with the camera crew behind them.
“Mr. Morrison.” He called out.
“Up here Dan.”
Morrison was in the glass peak of the house reclining on a day bed with a pyramid awning to protect it from the sun. It was in the centre of the room.
“I come here to focus the energy on me.” he said though an iceberg on his nose. “It works.”
“What about the bike?” Jennifer asked.
“I was found close enough to Whycocomagh for the investigators to assume she had been there before she took off. They also thought the guys were lying – you know the way native’s can’t be trusted. Talk to them.” He got up carefully.
“You might want to talk to her cousins.” Morrison walked down the stairs.
“The one she supposedly ran away with?” Dan asked.
“Yes. By the time they came back to the reservation no one wanted to question them about her. They did tell the RCMP that she wasn’t with them. They hadn’t see her that day either.”
“I’ll suggest that to the producers. We still have another family to interview. Once they are all done we’ll see where things stand for needing more information.”
“Okay. Stay in touch regardless.”
“Before we go I was wondering if you had any school photos of Paula. You know those portrait sets.”
“I don’t think so. I’ll ask my boys when they get here. They were so keen on her. In fact Seal has her notebooks. So he might have those pictures too.”
“Stephanie will be in touch with you if we need more for the interview. You touched on the same things the other parents did. The lack of cooperation on the part of the RCMP seems to come up a lot.”