That night as she lay in bed in the guest room, Emily tossed and turned, thinking about everything that she had been told. So much of it felt unbelievable, bordering on what she may have thought to be crazy only a few days ago. But that’d was before the smartphones disappeared and the dream of the dancing lights.
Leigh had gone home alone as Harry and Mary Jean suggested to avoid suspicion. Emily hadn’t realized how much she still relied on her older sister until the comfortable familiarity of Leigh was gone. Emily felt oddly alone as she faced the long hours of night in a strange house with people who weren’t even what she’d classify as people. But at least they were kind, protecting her from those who wished to take her life.
The memory of the dancing light ribbons that Mary Jean made in the living room gave Emily peace. It might have been because Julian experienced the same thing on the night Emily couldn’t remember, or it it could be the soothing music and scent it brought, but for whatever reason, the feelings convinced Emily that she was correct to trust Mary Jean and Harry. Her newfound relaxation finally allowed her the rest she so badly needed.
After dreams of only the light ribbons, Emily awoke to a brilliant beam of sunlight coming through the guest room window, creating an uplifting feeling in the entire space. She loved mornings in the desert. The sunrises were full of beauty, their light bringing a hopefulness to the otherwise austere landscape.
She dressed in an outfit she found in the closet, ironically in her exact size and style, before walking out to the kitchen.
“Good morning, Emily!” Mary Jean wore a smile nearly as bright as the desert sun. “Did you sleep well? I know Harry and I gave you a lot to think about last night. I hope you were comfortable.”
“I did rather well,” Emily replied. “Thank you for being such a kind hostess.”
“I’m happy you’re here,” Mary Jean said. “Coffee?”
“I would love a cup, thank you.” Once Emily took her first sip, she smiled. “Don’t tell Leigh, but I thought she made the best coffee ever.”
“Thanks,” Mary Jean answered as she poured herself a cup. “I guess after traveling around with Harry and his band, one gets an idea of what one likes.”
“So you really traveled with him? That wasn’t a cover story for your mission here?”
“Heavens, no. One of the things we liked best was the music,” Mary Jean explained. “That was how our idea started. To make a place where all of those enjoyable things existed again. We knew there was an audience for retro bands, so we took the opportunity.”
“That must have been fascinating,” Emily said. “What is your home like? You know, not here.”