The Soulmate Chronicles – Ever the Same – Amy Romine


A New Paranormal Romance Trilogy by Amy Romine

Fifteen years ago thirty men, women, and children, were found in a small California field. Now the only seven survivors are dying one by one.

Rachel Alton returned to Whitten’s Grove for one reason and that was to prevent a massacre. Her attendance at the local wedding of two of her best friends was just for fun. She never expected her reaction to seeing Ben Mitchell again. Without warning, he awakens her dormant heart, giving her hope for the future and she struggles to turn away. The clock is ticking, and as Rachel alone fights against the inevitable, but when forces from beyond throw Ben into the middle of the fight, will she walk away, or sacrifice herself to prevent a tragedy from happening twice?

Ben slid the card into the door, it opened, she moved past and he followed. So not in the mood for this.
“So how long have you known Rachel?”
“You know how long I’ve known her.” He tossed his key and wallet on the desk. In desperate need of a shower, he pulled his shirt off.
“So you haven’t seen her since college and that’s…”
“Drop it.”
“I don’t see—“
“I said drop it, Emily. I am not talking to you about Rachel.”
She moved across the room, toward him.“What’s the big secret?”
“Emily.” She stopped just in front of him. The scent of jasmine and mint wafting over him. He pushed away the stirring in his gut.
“I think it is sweet that she stills has a crush on you.” Her fingers spread over his chest and lurch of nausea swept through him.
“Em, what are you doing?”
“This…” she rose up on her toes in an attempt to kiss him. He moved back, catching her hands within his. “What’s wrong?”
“We’re over remember? Sharing a room doesn’t change that.”
“But I thought you wanted to make up. That is why I came, Ben, to try again.”
“Why would you think that after what happened? You slept with my partner, Em.”
“It happened once and it meant nothing. I just missed you so much.”
“You missed me.”
“What does that even mean? We were living together, we had plans—“
“It is kind of hard to have plans with someone who is a ghost!”
“You knew my job—“
“What about us, Ben? What about when I needed you? It got to the point that unless I was in a crime scene photo I didn’t count!”
“Oh that is crap Emily, you wanted a way out and you found it! You got what you wanted, it’s over.” Ben stepped back and turned going into the bathroom. His anger lulled beneath the cold water.
“What I don’t get is if you never wanted me, than why tell David you did?”
“It doesn’t matter, I always knew we were doomed to fail.”
“Emily stop playing games, what the hell—“
“I am curious, Ben. Is Rachel the one you haven’t been able to let go of? Is she the one who has been standing between us all of these years? Because that is how this happened.”
“Rachel had nothing to do with what happened between us.”
“Maybe it wasn’t her, but it someone.  You are a cold hearted son-of-a-bitch, Ben. You for all of your warmth, caring embrace and protective need, you never opened up did you? You could never let me in past the dutiful soldier. I don’t know that you’ve ever opened up to anyone.”
“You psycho babble bullshit is entertaining, funny how all of this is somehow my fault again.”
“I heard about what happened with Denton.” Ben turned away from her, his patience waning. “You nearly killed him.”
“Yes I am very aware of what happened, thank you.”
“Are you? Tom said you don’t even remember, that you lost control.”
“Yeah well Tom doesn’t know what the fuck his is talking about as usual.  What do you want from me? You want me to break down and tell you about every scar, nightmare, hidden phobia and fear I have. Is that what would have saved us? Because if it was than it is a little late don’t you think?”
“Yeah, it is.” She gathered her suitcase and purse before turning to the door. “Goodbye Ben.”
She disappeared from the room and he stood staring out the window. He didn’t need this.
“What I don’t get is if you never wanted me, than why tell David you did?”
Ben latched onto the comment and moved to his cell phone.  He dialed David’s number and got his secretary.  He dropped the phone on the bed and noticed the red message light on his hotel phone.
“Front Desk, may I help you?”
“This is Ben Mitchell in 349, I believe I have a message?”
“Please hold.” The line went silent, his mind still replaying his conversation with Emily. “Mr. Mitchell? You have a package, would you like us to bring it up to your room?”
“Uh, yes please.”
“Someone will be up shortly.”
“Thank you.” Ben yanked on some clothes and heard knock at the door. Greeted by a bell hop holding a large manila envelope. Ben pulled out a few dollars, handed it to the man.“Thanks.”
Solid and heavy. Ben took a seat at the desk and opened the envelope.  He pulled out what looked like a case file. He opened it.
The file read like a bad Dean Koontz novel. Twenty –three dead, seven survivors, a self confessed mad man, and a little girl traumatized into silence.  All if the names and places had been blacked out. Only the details of the crime remained. He thumbed through the pages of the file and was hit with the photos of the crime scene. He pushed through them, his stomach turning as each image passed across his vision.  The bodies were drained of all fluids, laying on scorched earth.  It made no logical sense to it.  Their horror filled mummified expressions were paralyzed in time.  He reviewed the entire file and then started again.
With the exception of the evidence at the crime scene, and the suspect’s confession, the two inch thick file was filled cover to cover with questions disguised as details.  The autopsies all said the same thing. The only difference was the names and the date of birth on each.  It didn’t matter which victim you chose, man, woman, or child, they all had the same handwriting, the same date and time.
An old case the photos, possibly ten to fifteen years. Who would send this to him and why? It wasn’t a cold case, per the notes, it went to trial and ended in conviction. So what is the point?

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