(This is the fourth installment of a macabre short story. You might wish to read the previous three chapters beginning here before continuing.)
Davis was the one who found O'Leary. He was trembling and fighting back tears of fear and anger as he struggled to pull the body down from the pole. There was no one around to help him. Both Monahan and Merriweather had already driven away.
...."Cash, you bastard! It's you, isn't it?" He looked around, perspiration streaming down his brow. He expected and dreaded a reply, but none was forthcoming.
....Bemused, Cash was observing the drama before him. Had he the ability to laugh, he would have done so at the expense of the pathetic cop kneeling over O'Leary's body. While alive, he would have never thought that the man believed in ghosts.
...."I know all about you, Cash. I know what you're up to," the confused cop muttered almost incoherently. "We destroyed all of the evidence. We made it look like an accident. What more do you want from us?"
....Cash realized that he was actually hearing the man's voice. Was he growing even stronger? Were his powers increasing? There would be another time, he thought, to dwell on his abilities. He was focused on the man and his tirade. The man was spilling his guts and Cash had only to take it all in without provocation.
....What had the man said? They'd destroyed the evidence and had made it look like an accident? It was the second time he heard the inferrence that his fellow cops had covered up something he'd done. O'Leary had left the impression that Cash had killed his wife. How was that possible? He'd seen her at the funeral. She was very much alive.
....Yes, at the funeral. He was still confused about that burial service. Why wasn't it his body in that casket? If it wasn't his body, why had he been drawn there? He cursed himself that he'd neglected to look at the officers who were in attendance. Were any of the four cops sitting at the table in the pub present at the cemetery?
"I should have never gone to see that woman," said Davis breaking several moments of silence. Cash could have sworn that the man was looking right at him. "Damn her and her tea leaves! Damn that crystal ball she was using!" He was sobbing uncontrollably. "I thought she was a phony. I ... I thought that stuff was a crock of shit."
....Cash tensed, captivated by Davis's every word. The damned fool actually went to see a fortune teller? He was growing impatient. The man's blathering was taking too long. He had to get to the heart of the matter. He was going to pay Davis a closer, more personal visit. He needed to make the conversation two-way. He needed to reach out and touch someone, namely Mr. Davis. Curious, he thought to himself, did he actually just make a joke?
....Davis was still rambling. "She said you were still out there. She said you were coming after all of us who were involved." With that statement, Davis pulled his revolver out of the holster and pointed it in Cash's general direction.
....Cash was startled at first. Did Davis think he was going to shoot him? Hell, he had already been shot and killed once before. Did he actually think a bullet would stop him now? He was mere inches from Davis. He could hear the man's labored breathing.
....Uncerimoniously, Davis raised the pistol to his temple and pulled the trigger.
The bullet, brain matter and blood passed through the space occupied by Cash's essence. Unaffected, although he'd been denied any more information, Cash allowed himself to be whisked from the scene. With renewed strength he did not resist the force that beckoned him. He knew now that there was no remote mystic force at work. Although he hadn't realized it before, he himself had been that driving force. By his own volition he had been following the path to justice. Perhaps he thought, it was instead vengence that had been fueling his quest.
....There were only two left, Merriweather and the good Captain Monahan. He would find them, just as he'd found the others. He had all of eternity. They had only the rest of their lives. Any betting man would choose eternity.