This week Trifecta gave us the word "manipulate" as in "to change by artful or unfair means so as to serve one's purpose: to doctor".
I decided to revisit my One Night in Dusseldorf series for this prompt. It’s been a while since I worked on it. James, Kris, and Emma are in London. Emma is still trying to get answers about who killed her sister and how her sister died. James and Emma are out at dinner after Emma’s discovery that Kris is a werewolf for real. Emma is still trying to wrap her mind around all of that. Then James tells Emma her sister is still alive. And this is the next piece in the story:
I dropped my fork. The clatter of it bouncing of the plate and hurtling to the floor seemed deafening, loud enough everyone should be staring. But they weren’t even looking at all.
“What the hell do you mean? If you knew she was alive, why didn’t you tell me that right away? Back in Germany?”
I never wanted to throttle someone, to beat the ever living daylight out of someone as bad as I wanted to pound Kris at that moment.
“Stop and think, Emma. You were notified by the police of her death. You saw the photos. You said so when we first spoke over the phone. You would never have believed me had I told you then. You needed to see the world Lauren inhabits now. Only then would you believe me.”
I took several deep breaths. That James was right wasn’t helping any. I needed to think.
“So you’re saying you had to manipulate me into a position for me to believe you.”
It was ever so slight, but I spotted the hesitation before he answered. There was more to this than he was saying.
“That is a part of it,” he finally sighed.
“And the rest?”
“We need you, Emma. I know Kris tried to tell you that. I don’t know that you really understood. I still am not certain you understand.”
“Kris said something about some druid something,” I conceded.
“Not just something. You are one of a small handful of people alive on this earth that can help our people maintain control, maintain balance.”
“So you needed to manipulate me not only to get me to believe you, but to get me to agree to help you, too?”
“We needed to manipulate the situation, not you. We needed you show you how important you are. We need you. To turn away from us now is a death sentence for me, for Kris, and our people.”
“What about my sister? You haven’t explained anything about Lauren yet.”
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