So the two sisters made a deal. In exchange for a place to stay, rent free, and help with car payments and health insurance, Janet would maintain silence regarding Betsy’s race and family history. Blackmail pure and simple, but Janet didn’t care. As far as she was concerned, her older sister owed her for leaving her with a sex predator all those years ago and never getting back in touch, never even once contacting Janet to see if she was okay. The seeming indifference. I asked her what had happened after Betsy abandoned her – had she gone into foster care? – but she wasn’t interested in telling that story. She wanted to talk about the house Betsy had put her in, a sublet in south Austin, not far from Ben White. The place was furnished which was good – Janet had sold most of her stuff before leaving Florida and didn’t want to invest in new furniture. It was well-located, with two bedrooms, a nice big kitchen, a screened in back porch, even a garden, but – and here was the problem – it felt haunted.
Janet couldn’t put her finger on why. There were no noises in the middle of the night, no strange disturbances, or objects that suddenly went missing. Nothing like that. It was more something awry in the atmosphere. She would walk into a room and feel as if someone had just been there moments before and vanished at the sound of her footsteps.
“That’s pretty creepy,” I offered. “Do you know who lived there before?”
“Some sort of doctor. He actually used the place as an office, but now it’s more like a regular house again. He still pays the rent.”
I stared at her, shocked. She had to be talking about Victor Goodlove.
“Do you know his name?”
Janet shook her head. “But he still has a lot of his stuff around and his car’s still in the garage, a 1996 Volvo. Why? You think it’s that same guy you’re writing about on your blog?”
“You should come visit,” Janet said, laughing. “You might find some evidence.”
That conversation took place in April, more than two months ago. I’ve been too busy to go over there, but yesterday I had a call from Janet about a strange new development and decided I’d better take a little trip back into the past, and drive down to south Austin for a visit to Victor’s old office.
To be continued…
Cover photo ~ https://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/What-Are-Shadow-People