Daniel’s grandfather shook his head, “I wish that were true. What you’re seeing isn’t Alzheimer’s. It’s the result of overuse of my powers. You might even call it the growth of my prescience without a growth in my ability to stay grounded in the world around me.”
He stopped, looking from Izzy and Daniel to C, Jaclyn and me, “I can pull it together for meetings, but not for too long.”
C nodded, “We can’t talk too much about that. Not here.”
The Mentalist smiled, “I know, but I also know that there’s no one listening now that I wouldn’t want to hear it. Right now, I need to let the Mystic know that I’m not living a life of constant confusion. I’m paying attention to other things, not all of them in this time. I can chase down possibilities and even alter things a little.
“What I’m trying to say is that it’s not perfect, but there are compensations. I will grow enough, given time, that I’ll be able to control my consciousness and not let it pull me where it will. I’m still getting stronger. You’ll find that you don’t stop. I couldn’t have destroyed that man that easily even ten years ago.”
He looked up at Daniel, the two of them a study in contrasts. The Mentalist was old, wrinkled, bald and five inches shorter than Daniel. Daniel was in his early 20s, tall, dark-haired, and while no bodybuilder, in good shape for any age.
Daniel didn’t say anything at first. I felt a swirl of emotions from him—disappointment, surprise, relief, love, and more. When he did speak, he said, “I hope you figure out how to pull yourself back longer. I’d like to have you back. We all would.”
Daniel’s mom stepped out of the front door, automatic pistol pointed down at the ground, but otherwise passing for a 40-something suburban mom. Dark-haired with olive skin, she wore jeans and a magenta blouse.
With a glance toward her, the Mentalist said, “I know, but it won’t be tomorrow. I’ll do what I can, but while I am here, I want you to know that I’m proud of you, all of you. Your team deserves to inherit our name and reputation even if you don’t feel like it sometimes.
“Also,” he stopped to look at Izzy where she stood next to Daniel, “the two of you are good together and in the future, at least in the most likely ones. I’ve seen them.”
From their house’s front porch, Daniel’s mom cleared her throat.
The Mentalist glanced over at her and nodded, “That’s my hint that I won’t be able to keep this up forever. She’s right. Before I go, I need to tell the Rocket something.”
He met my eyes and I felt a mental connection between the two of us. It didn’t feel the same as my connection to Daniel. For lack of a better word, it felt wider. Along with it came a hint of the kind of connection I felt while in contact with Kee.
None of the defenses that Daniel created in my head responded at all.
Before I could ask about that, Daniel’s grandfather said aloud, “After you fought the Cabal, you and I happened to talk. I was putting away the dishes, but I told you to something about a device and I told you to destroy it. I’m sure you thought I meant the power impregnator at the time.”
I nodded, “It seemed the most likely possibility then, but I wasn’t sure. It didn’t fit exactly. Even by then, I knew that there were probably more devices along those lines than just one.”
I didn’t say it aloud, but I could think of another device that he might have meant and we were already chasing it. Despite talking to one of Magnus’ former friends, we still didn’t know exactly where it was.
The Mentalist smiled, “I wasn’t all there at the time, but you’re on the right track anyway. Keep on looking. You’ll have opportunities to find it and you may have the power to use it. I think you’ll find it calling to you when you get close enough, but don’t forget that you’re not the only one with that potential. Even though there aren’t many who can say the same, the number of them that I’d trust is even smaller.”
The telepathic connection between us ended and he said, “I have to go.”
He stepped forward to hug Daniel and Daniel hugged him back. I felt a flash of happiness and loss mingled together as Daniel let go and his grandfather floated upward, hovering above the house for a few seconds before he disappeared.
Viewing through the eyes of my spybots, I knew that he’d floated down the back of the house and in through the sliding glass door. From the front, though, whether through the speed of his flight or some kind of telepathic manipulation, I only saw him disappear.
It was so smooth.