Beware the Thorns

You sheltered me from harm.

Kept me warm, kept me warm

You gave my life to me

Set me free, Set me free

The finest years I ever knew

were all the years I had with you

And I would give anything I own,

Give up me life, my heart, my home.

I would give everything I own,

just to have you back again.

Bread/Everything I Own

"Phil… that's it, Phil." she repeated his name over and over like a mantra. It was hard to keep it in her head though, everything was so foggy and confused. There was one thing she did remember, something that she needed to do before going back to the hotel. She was weak, in fact she didn't know if she would be able to make it but she had to try. "Thorns." she kept repeating to herself, "Roses with thorns" as she entered the park and headed to where she saw the rose bushes the other day. She saw them there, beautiful white roses just like the ones Simon brought to here.

She bent down and looked closely. No thorns. These roses have no thorns! "Of course they have no thorns, a thorn might injure you and so we did away with thorns years ago." a voice from behind her said. It was an old man with a gentle face. He bowed gracefully go her and introduced himself. "My name is Thomas," he said "and you are the lady Jan, am I correct?" Jan stood and adjusted her skirt, feeling dirty from what happened before. "Yes, my name is Jan… how did you know?" she asked politely.

"Oh, we all know about you here! You have created quite a stir you know. You and that Phil guy." She stood there, frozen.

"Phil, you said? Phil is here?!" "Yes, of course he is. I don't know where we would be or should I say will be without both of you. You mean you didn't know he was here?" She didn't know whether to believe him or not, something about him felt very wrong, and reminded her of Simon.

"Better hurry back to the hotel, my lady, it looks like it might rain." he said off-handedly, smiling as he pointed to a large grey cloud circling above them.

She said goodbye to Thomas as she hurried out of the park. She had the distinct feeling that she was being followed, so she turned quickly. She saw Simon standing talking to Thomas, then they both looked her way. She turned away and began walking faster. Her knees were giving out on her, but she willed them to carry her to her destination. Once in her room she saw her bed in front of her, but before she could get that far she collapsed in a heap on the floor and fell asleep there.

Part 20