The man’s sister had improved greatly. She was sitting up and talking. The fever was gone and though she felt better, the doctor advised her to stay in bed until she regain the strength to her legs. By the time she had gotten better it was too late for the doctor to return to the city. He had to stay the night. The man offered the doctor his barn which he agreed to. The doctor didn’t want to stay another day in Dacia, but he had no other choice. The doctor was standing on the porch watching the sun go down when he heard the sister calling out to her brother from her room. She sounded worried.
“You can’t let him sleep in the barn,” she said.
“He’ll be fine,” said the man.
“It wouldn’t be safe,” she tried to persuade him.
“I said, he’ll be fine,” the man repeated.
The man came down the stairs with a blanket and a kerosene lamp.
“You’ll be needing this for the night,” the man handed the blanket to the doctor. With a lantern in hand he lead the doctor to the barn. “I wouldn’t recommend taking a stroll late at night,” the man said. “Stay inside and you’ll be safe… and whatever you do keep the lantern lit.”
“I’ve been told that,” said the doctor.
“I would heed the advice, doctor,” the man handed him the kerosene lamp and double latched the door.
The doctor could hear the man walking away.
“Great,” the doctor muttered. He wondered what the rumors of Dacia were.Whatever they were it scared people away and those that staid were strange in their ways. He searched for a pile of hay, sprawled the blanket and laid down. The blanket was soft, though the hay poking through it made it uncomfortable to relax. The doctors companions for the night were two Clydesdale horses who seemed uneasy with his presence or so he thought.
The night had fallen rapidly and the wind was rattling the barn, making the horses become agitated. He had prompt the lantern next to him and hoped it didn’t start a fire. As he was staring into the ceiling he realized that he didn’t know the man’s name. He wondered if he had even introduced himself. He couldn’t recall. He sighed and closed his eyes. He needed to get some sleep, tomorrow he had a long day of traveling.