His double. It was true—the guy standing behind him was his exact double. Zero whirled around, almost spraying a passer-by with his coffee in the process, only to find that there was no one there. But there had been someone there for sure—he had seen their reflection in the shop window and being his good vampy self, he certainly didn’t have a reflection of his own. So who…? Zero stared down the street and then rapidly up it. There! There he was! He could see a black-clad figure disappearing around a corner. Setting off at a pace, Zero was up at the corner in no time—only to find that he had missed him again. Zero looked down at Layla and Layla looked back up at him. They were sharing one thought—What now?
Zero continued to make his way down the side street. Perhaps they would run into him again. He was almost on the brink of saying ‘Well, he couldn’t have just disappeared into thin air!’ before conceding that, in his world, that was entirely possible. Zero and Layla walked past a number of large, stately Victorian weatherboard houses, painted in muted, original hues. Each garden was a lovingly tended, buzzing confection of herbs, flowers and satisfied bees. Zero stopped outside one front gate and breathed in deeply. Delicious—he could pick out rosemary, sage, thyme and lemon balm in just one inhalation. A behatted old lady bent over a flower bed looked up and smiled. “Back again?” She asked.
“I’m sorry?” Zero asked.
“You were just here a moment ago…breathing in, just like that.” She smiled benignly at him.
“Uh…no. I think you may have met my twin. Did you see which way he went?”
“Twin? My, you’re the very image of each other! He went down that way, love, towards the lake.” She gestured down the road, at the end of which was a gathering of pine trees.
“Thank you!” Zero said, smiling back at her and doubling his pace to the end of the street. Layla had to run to keep up with him.
Arriving at the pine trees, he noticed a note pinned to one of the lower branches. He grasped at it and found that it contained only one word—‘Soon’.