Two FBI agents, Agent Sam Rayner and Agent Nixon Rose Emery , travel to a small town in Oregon called Kolob. They intend to investigate the disappearance of a young girl written about by blogger Posy Petunia. The agents quickly discover that there is more to this small town than they expected, and that those in power in Kolob may not want outsiders poking around. With the help of the relatively new hire at the local Sheriff's office, Deputy Gabriel Decker, Nixon and Sam seek the truth behind the young girl's disappearance.
Cast Roles Edit
- Posy Petunia (Kate Elliott) - Ex-journalist turned investigative blogger, her grandmother left her a house in Kolob in her will.
- Deputy Gabriel Decker (Mike Ginn) - Recently moved to Kolob and got a job as deputy six months ago.
- Agent Nixon Rose Emery (Markeia McCarty) - FBI agent who discovers the story of a missing girl in Kolob.
- Agent Sam Rayner (Hector Navarro) - Emery's partner, travels with her to Kolob to investigate the disappearance.
Chapter Summaries Edit
While clicking around on Facebook at her desk in the New York FBI office, Special Agent Nixon stumbles upon one of Posy's blogs that is being shared around wildly, entitled A Girl Went Missing, and No One Cares. The blog post states that Kolob is famous for its wine, and its 'ungodly' ability to grow grapes year round, nestled in the mountains and devoid of any noticeable cycle of seasons, Kolob keeps up a constant production of grapes. A ten year old girl, Cindy Baker, went missing from the town on March 20th, 2017, nearly a year ago. Agent Nixon dismisses the article as a sensationalist piece and goes on about her work, but something about the story sticks with her.
Two weeks pass and Agent Nixon goes looking for the article again but can't find the original post, or any reference to it on any of the sites that took up the story, only transcripts of the article on smaller sites and personal blogs. Finding this unusual, Agent Nixon digs a bit deeper into Kolob. She finds records of an unassuming small town with very little crime, almost none, except for the disappearance of another ten year old girl on March 20th, 1997. And another disappearance from March 20th, 1977. None of these reports were from the town of Kolob police department, only from testimonies from bloggers interviewing extended family members years later. The three disappearances, each twenty years apart, make Agent Nixon even more interested. Nixon goes to her partner, Sam Rayner, telling him about what she has discovered and that she has called the local Kolob Sheriff's office several times trying to talk to Sheriff Daniel Asim, but she is getting the cold shoulder. They debate whether to bring it to their boss and Rayner eventually agrees to back Agent Nixon on this. Regional Director Johnathon Johns listens to their case while mentioning 'tuna' and 'cutting the head off of a chicken', but, in the end, he agrees to send them to Kolob.
Chapter 1 Edit
In an unmarked sedan, Agents Rayner and Emery make their way east from Portland, toward the small town of Kolob, Oregon. They have a small map of the layout of the town and some of the surrounding area. The majority of the town sits in the Charin (sp?) river valley but has spread up a small hill, at the top of the hill is an exclusive winery/country club. Most of the town lies on the east side of the river as it runs through town.
As they drive, they talk about their boss' quirks, Rayner mentions that Johns may be somewhere on the autism spectrum and that he has a sharp mind. While they talk, Rayner gets a text message that reads 'Listening.' Rayner attempts to back trace the number, it comes back registered to Deputy Director Johnathan Johns. We also learn that Agent Emery was up late the previous night looking up Posy Petunia on the dark web. She found a will left by a Kolob woman named Janice Petunia, who left her home to Posy Petunia.
The Agents see two hitchhikers on the road ahead, toting large blue backpacks. They elect to pass them by, earning a rude gesture from the hitchhikers. Rayner notices that one is wearing a tattered red shirt and the other wears a pink tank top with an American flag on it.
Entering the city limits they see the Welcome to Kolob sign. Population: 100. Established: 1906. On the bottom right of the sign, Sam notices a small symbol spray painted in black. It looks like a stylized capital 'U' with an underline attached to the bottom and two dots between the arms of the U, larger dot over the smaller.
They make their way to the Charin Motel and, upon parking the car and exiting the vehicle, they notice a tall, slender man staring at them across the street. The man takes no notice of their greetings and lifts his phone to make a call. The agents turn to the Motel and head towards the small main office. As they do, they notice that all the rooms are ground floor and they overlook the river. Looking down into the river basin the agents notice a small bridge over the river, and underneath it a homeless camp. The camp is the only thing that they have seen that looks 'out of place.'
The small office is well kept and decorated with stuffed and mounted animal heads. They are greeted by Bailey, the woman working at the front desk. Bailey asks a lot of questions about why they are 'special' agents and inquires as to their business in town. She shows them some pamphlets about local attractions (wine tour, caves outside town that make beautiful lights) and after some awkward small talk asks if she's 'done something wrong?' As the agents ask more about Bailey and the town, she asks again about whether she's 'done something wrong' and if she is being questioned. They also learn that it was assumed the two agents were a couple and that they were given a single room with one bed.
Bailey tells them she'll let the sheriff know they're here, and what a coincidence 'that's him right there.' The sheriff's cruiser pulls into the parking lot and he gets out and starts looking into the agents' sedan. Bailey calls out to him and the sheriff asks what's 'special' about them as well. Sheriff Asim is quite curt with them, saying that it is not necessary to go back to his office, they can talk right there. He talks about how he's worried about the FBI or the government coming in and taking over. After some squabbling, the agents get their room key and head out to their car to follow the sheriff to his office. “Pay no attention to the vermin,” Bailey calls after them.
They pass through the town on the way to the sheriffs office, taking notice of the local shops and the town's only tavern the Drunken Deer. Upon arriving at City Hall, which contains the Sheriff's office, the agents follow the sheriff's car to an underground parking lot with a gate. The sheriff waves his badge under a scanner and the gate opens and he drives through. The gate stays shut for the agents' sedan and the sheriff gives them a backhanded wave as he pulls into the structure.
Rayner and Emery park on the street and notice more people stopping and staring at them.
In the Sheriff's office, Deputy Gabriel Decker, the town's only deputy, hired six months ago, is called in to see the sheriff. The main office is somewhat on the small side, there are a few cells and three smaller desks, Decker's, the secretary's and one other empty desk. In contrast, the Sheriff's own office is unusually large, a bigger desk dominates the room under a painting on the back wall. The painting depicts a matador and a bull mid-fight. The bull has gored the matador and his horn protrudes from the man's back as he is being flipped into the air. The painting has always unnerved Deputy Decker.
The Sheriff tasks Deputy Decker with handling the FBI, 'tell them what they need to hear to get them out of here, don't want them to poke around and bother the tourists.' Deputy Decker walks out and introduces himself to the agents, telling them that he is their new liaison. He tells them further interaction with the sheriff probably won't happen and takes them across the street to a cafe to talk.
All the diners stop eating as soon as the trio enters, they take a seat at an empty table and start to talk as Decker's favorite waitress, Emmerson Kelsey waits on them, and eavesdrops on them as well. Deputy Decker has not heard anything about these disappearances, as agent Rayner looks around, he sees that everyone is trying to listen in and he stops the conversation. Emmerson reveals that everyone has heard about Posy's blog post and that no one talks about it now, at first the town reacted poorly and Posy's house was egged but once the post was taken down, things calmed, though Posy is still known as 'the outcast'. Emmerson also claims that there haven't been any other disappearances.
Decker and the agents pay their tab and go outside to talk. Emery asks Decker what he knows about the blogger, all he knows is that people say she has a big mouth. The deputy comes clean with the agents about what the sheriff said about getting them out of town and then tells them that he is leaning towards siding with them in protecting his new town, he's looking to put down roots here and he hasn't ever fully trusted the sheriff.
The raucous caw of a crow interrupts the group and they look across the street to see a woman standing there smoking, a crow sits on her shoulder and a patch rests over her eye. Deputy Decker recognizes her as Hildred Justice, head of sanitation for Kolob. They take separate cars over to Posy's house, which is about 200 yards away, so it's not a long drive.
After some initial hesitation and asking for a warrant, Posy lets them into her house when they mention they are investigating the disappearances. Posy sees Hildred walking up the street as she shuts the door behind them. Posy is reluctant to go back into all of this since the town turned on her after the her blog post, shunning her, suing her, trying to force her out of her grandmother's house.
The sheriff pulls up outside, lights flashing, and grabs Hildred from Posy's yard, he tells deputy Decker he is taking her in for trespassing. As Hildred is shoved into the back of the sheriff's car, she shouts to Posy “Janice! She was the catalyst!”. Posy says she doesn't want to press charges but the sheriff takes Hildred in anyway. Posy goes back inside, locks the door, and grabs a pack off the floor, exiting her grandmother's house by the back door and heading towards the police station.
Deputy Decker, feeling overwhelmed, heads to his car and leaves. Agent Nixon sees Bailey in the crowd of people that have wandered over after hearing the siren. Bailey gives her directions to Cindy Bakers' house and the agents go there to speak to the girl's family. On the way they stop back at the motel to check out their room.
Deputy Decker decides to do his own investigating at the homeless camp underneath the bridge. He approaches a small camp fire with a few people huddled around it. When asked about the little girl all ten say 'oohhh' in unison and nod as well. 'So you have heard of Cindy Baker?' Decker asks. 'No, no, no, no, no we never said that.' One of them holds up a can of beans with a spoon and Decker takes a bite as the homeless all look at each other in amazement, he takes another.
As deputy Decker eats, his vision closes in, darkening around the edges, focusing on a bearded man with a torn beanie that has hair poking through it. The man starts to pulse and glow with light, his body shifts and contorts into the body of a small girl, holding a little pink backpack. A slight slap brings him back from the vision, deputy Decker comes to leaning over the fire, looking into the face of the man who has slapped him. He grabs the man and drags him from the group, they all start saying 'no' and each one reaches out to touch him, all of them making sure to get at least one hand on him before the deputy takes him away.
As Decker questions the man, he grabs the can of beans that Decker had brought along without realizing it and begins drawing with them on the ground. He draws a symbol somewhat similar to the one agent Rayner had seen, but this time the 'U' is upside down, and the underline has moved up, almost turning it into a curved 'A' with a tiny line sticking up from the apex. Glowing blue veins start to pulsate on the homeless man's neck and move up into his face as he begins to choke. The man rips at his shirt, revealing the same symbol branded into his chest, the blue veins spider out from it. The homeless group runs over, and they pick the dead man up. Without breaking eye contact with Decker, they throw the dead man into the river and then they all back away, never breaking eye contact until the get into their camp and resume their daily activities, no longer acknowledging Decker. Shaken, Decker retreats to the police station.
Posy arrives at city hall at the same time as Decker, Posy has stashed her bag before she arrived. The two walk into the station and Hildred shakes the bars of the cell she is in and calls out to them. The secretary, Janice, tells them the sheriff's orders were that no one interacts with Hildred. Posy and Decker manage to convince Janice to leave them alone with Hildred but she is not happy about it. "The sheriff will hear about this," she warns. Deputy Decker takes Hildred to one of the interrogation rooms and shuts the door.
- Agent Rayner, seeing these strange symbols, gets flashbacks to his aunt taking him to meetings at a local hall, he can't remember much aside from seeing some of the symbols there.
- Petunia's post struck a nerve in Nixon, her mind goes back to her youth. Her friend Cindy went missing around that age, try as she might she could never find her friend again. She joined the FBI to lay her friend to rest.
- Nixon notices Bailey looking at her intently when she thinks Nixon isn't looking. Bailey is muttering to herself or looks like she's talking to someone who isn't there.
- There are rumors of a farm family making modifications to their house, but no one really seems to know why. All anyone knows is there is a tall goatlike man who lives there.
- There's a wealthy winery owner, Arthur Riggs, who has bought buildings downtown when they went out of business. Windows covered, no new tenants sought.
- Gabriel Decker has been deputy Kolob for six months, he wants to set down roots here but this is his fourth job in three years, and his fourth job in three years, and his fourth new name.
- Gabriel has gone through a lot trying to start anew, sometimes he can see her in the corners of his vision, nightgown clinging to flesh, skin burned away, pearly white teeth exposed. Run as he may, the fire casts a long shadow.
Chapter 2 Edit
We open in the interrogation room, Hildred is chewing on her fingernails nervously, eyes darting between Posy and Decker. “Janice...she set this in motion and Gary said I have to see it through,” Hildred rants, “She was the bringer of change, Janice. She set things in motion to bring down the Totem. The Totem, protected by the Bull. The council and the Wall. They're all in on it. Gary said the Fawn, the Lock, the Voice, the Temple, the Hive, and the Vermin.” “The Hive cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire and they use divination and enchantments and have sold themselves to do evil on the side of the Lord, the Hive.”
The door opens and Tibby Devin, the county prosecutor, breaks up the interrogation, Hildred tries to move away from him, ranting about “the Wall.” While they interact with the prosecutor, Hildred continues saying “the Wall” and trying to move further from him, the prosecutor begins to sweat profusely. Posy keeps saying she isn't pressing charges and Deputy Decker says that Hildred is free to go.
The prosecutor continues over their protests, “I will be representing her, and if this continues it will end quickly.” Devin puts a piece of paper in front of Hildred and tells her to sign it, as she catches sight of the paper she lifts her eye patch and a red glow is cast over the paper. Under the light from the glowing red hole in Hildred's face, the writing on the paper fades away and a symbol can be seen.
Upon seeing the revealed symbol, her hand falls away from the eye patch, covering the red light again and she begins to SLAM her head into the interrogation table. Over and over again. As the Posy and Decker try to stop her, the prosecutor begins to pack up his things calmly. Deputy Decker grabs for the sheet of paper on the table but it crumbles to ash without any flame. “There will be no more questions on this matter. I suggest you contact my office if you'd like to discuss this further.” The prosecutor leaves.
By the time Decker can stop Hildred, her head is broken open and blood gushes from the wound. Posy shoves a piece of paper in front of the woman and tells her to write something, anything. She draws the same 'U' shaped symbol that Rayner had seen but underneath the underline she draws what looks like the head of a trident, facing the opposite way of the 'U'. She dies, choking on her own blood.
Agents Nixon and Rayner are at Margo and John Bakers' door, they hear cawing as Hildred's crow seems to have followed them. John opens the door and steps out, they see Margo in a night gown, hair frizzed out, peeking toward the door from around a corner before John closes it behind him. John doesn't want them coming in as Margo 'isn't feeling well' and he doesn't want them bringing this back up in front of her. He says their therapist has advised they leave the traumatic events of their daughter's disappearance in the past and forget about it.
They learn that Cindy didn't come home from school that day and that she walked home from school usually. Margo peeks out the front window through the curtains and John moves in front of her. John tells them he has been petitioning for higher fences along the river and that the homeless often cut holes in the fence. Cindy probably fell into the river, he tells them. When they mention the other disappearances he tells them to leave, Emery presses to talk to Margo. Rayner reins her in and gives the man his card, making a plea to him to stop other girls from disappearing. John accepts the card and steps back inside shutting the door.
The agents walk to their car and they hear sirens as an ambulance flashes past them down the hill into town.
Posy sweeps the papers Hildred had drawn the symbol on into her pocket before the EMTs arrive at the interrogation room to take Hildred away. Deputy Decker takes her aside, deeper into the station, for a conversation about what she knows.
Emmerson steps up to the two agents outside and tells them that 'sanitation killed herself'. As they step into the main office they see a gathering of townsfolk around the sheriff himself. The sheriff makes his way over to the agents and tells them the grisly details of Hildred's death, he says she was 'drunk' and doesn't want to hear otherwise. Emery brings up Cindy Baker, and the sheriff tells them she 'fell into the river and will never be seen again.' Rayner gets in his face and confronts him about the other disappearances in '97 and '77. “If you keep bullshitting us, bad things are gonna happen, sir.” Rayner tells the sheriff.
An affable man steps in, putting a hand on each of the men's backs, seeking to diffuse the situation. He introduces himself as Shiloh Anah, he runs the country club. He dismisses the sheriff back to the group of townsfolk and invites the agents to the club for a treat. The agents suggest a conversation as well and Emery offers her card to Shiloh, but he tells them he has no need of it. In fact, he has already spoken to their Director and has all their information. Shiloh takes his leave, telling them he will see them at the club in the evening.
- Posy was a reporter in the past, she made a fatal error in her reporting that resulted in the deaths of some small children that went missing. She was fired from her job and has now turned to blogging.
- Decker's family is connected to the missing children. His uncle was working in the Kolob police department from 1977 - 1997. The family has moved to a different town a few miles away, but Gabriel used that connection to get the job as deputy in Kolob. His uncle has since passed away.
Chapter 3 Edit
Deputy Decker and Posy are outside, around the back side of city hall, talking about what they just witnessed in the interrogation room. Decker apologizes for bringing her in on it. Posy tells him that the presence of the prosecutor means that this goes higher than the sheriff, and that their only hope lies in finding the truth. Decker assures her he is in this until the end. Posy and Decker make the connection that the townsfolk refer to the homeless as 'the Vermin'. Decker shares his experience at the homeless camp and that Gary is the name of the old deputy who had the job before him. Posy shares that the Janice that Hildred was talking about is her grandmother, Janice Petunia.
Decker wants to go back into the station and search for clues, Hildred mentioned the Bull and the Wall and Decker wants to check the painting of the bull in the sheriff's office. He peeks inside and sees the city council standing around with the sheriff in the main office. The country club owner goes over to talk to the FBI agents then leaves. The Sheriff goes out to talk to Shiloh and Decker takes the opportunity to sneak into the sheriff's office, Posy takes watch outside the room. The stream of light from the window makes the painting seem to warp and weave in the darkened room. Decker removes the painting to check behind it, revealing a blank wall. Even this close the painting seems to be moving. But otherwise, nothing special is found. A search of the sheriff's desk reveals two keys: one for the evidence room and one for a file cabinet in the office. There is nothing related to the Baker case in the file cabinet so Decker heads to the door. Peeking out, he sees secretary Janice has resumed her post.
Decker strides out of the office and Janice says the sheriff was just looking for him, he wants Posy locked up and questioned as a witness. Posy talks to Janice as Decker slips over to the evidence room. Decker altruistically believes in the greater good of revealing the truth of Cindy Bakers' disappearance as he slips into the evidence room he isn't supposed to be in. There is nothing in the evidence room pertaining to the disappearances but there are some items pertaining to Gary Humes' death: a file describing an incident on the highway outside town, where Humes lost control of his car in the mountains north of the country club, where he died on the scene, on March 20th, 2017. Also listed is his last known address.
Decker and Posy slip out the back and decide to check Gary's place and then Janice's place for clues.
Agents Rayner and Emery arrive at Cindy's old school, a tall, slim, red haired woman in her thirties runs up to them. Principal December Murrow introduces herself and tells them they sent the children home after hearing about Hildred's death. December brings them in to her office and Rayner takes the seat furthest from her. December doesn't remember too much from that day, other than that Cindy was in class as normal. Cindy was a well-behaved and bright young student. No trouble at home, the community has a way of 'taking care' of things like that, keeping this 'a very nice town'.
December repeats the 'fell in the river' story, with the homeless folks cut a hole in the fence line as well. But she also says they found Cindy's backpack by the river. She tells them that it is best for the town to move on from the disappearance, to let the girl's parents have hope that someday she might return. She also says that she always suspected that one of the homeless people had something to do with the disappearance. She hasn't heard of any other disappearances either, Rayner is complementary of her during the questioning, and she places a hand on his knee.
Knowing that December is about the right age to have been around during 1997 disappearance, they ask her about it. The only other kid in town that was December's age was Verner Florence, 'an odd one'. Emery gives Sam's card to December in case she remembers anything. December offers to round up any of Cindy's old school work and take the agents out to dinner to deliver it to them later, placing her hand on Sam's shoulder. She asks if the agents are a couple and they quickly leave.
A black limousine waits for them outside, the driver is slow-spoken and says 'Your ride.' He asks if he's done something wrong when they question him. The agents enter the limo and it makes its way toward the country club.
Posy and Decker arrive at Gary's apartment. A man named Bob Whitney, owner of Bob's Electric, answers Decker's knock. Bob invites Decker in for a beer. They talk about the suicide Decker witnessed and then about how Bob got the apartment, Bob says it was cleaned out when he moved in. Decker feeds Bob a line about rechecking an old scene for missed evidence so he can poke around the apartment.
Behind the refrigerator, Decker finds a hidden compartment, a square cut out of the wall with a hole to lift the panel out. Contained within is a journal with the name Janice Petunia. Two loose pieces of paper are tucked inside the journal. Decker takes it all as evidence.
One of the sheets of paper is a map of Kolob marked with symbols and numbers, a star, an 'S”, one area is marked the Fields of Blood of Christ. The other is a list of symbols with their meanings. Posy and Decker get into his squad car to look closer at what he found.
Agent Nixon goes to run a search for other disappearances in twenty year gaps before the three they know of, but there is no signal this close to the mountains on the road to the country club, no hope of answers.
- Posy makes a discovery of a journal that belonged to both her mother and grandmother. She doesn't really know if this book has any importance but it keeps catching her attention and has great sentimental value.
- In a moment of quiet, Deputy Decker hears a crunch and discovers a piece of paper in his pocket, it's a journal entry, written by a young girl, the date is illegible. How did it get there? Did someone slip it in there? (Ruled to be a gm power, Zac will alter it and work it in later.)
- As a journalist Posy has always believed in the power of words, but the symbol on the paper that seemed to drive Hildred mad is another thing entirely, she can't stop thinking about it, she feels a deep need to learn its power.
- Rayner had a wife once. He never believed the evidence but she committed suicide by driving off a cliff into the ocean. He can never shake the nightmare of standing in the waves, a scream, headlights from the dark above, heading toward him.
- Rayner feels oddly calm in the town of Kolob. he feels almost like he's been there before, even though he is SURE it is his first time here. One word keeps popping up in his mind: Vermin.
Chapter 4 Edit
The country club is a large, white building, ungodly clean. During the ride up Rayner wrote a note saying 'we need to follow the money $$' and showed it to Emery. The limo driver leads them through an empty country club, every once in a while looking back to make sure they are still following him. He opens two large doors into Shiloh's office where the man himself waits for them. He offers them some lemonade, not wine, as he knows they don't drink on the job. A woman of indeterminate age, in a childish dress, stumbles in carrying one lemonade on a platter, holding it with two hands, it's clear she has special needs (Downs syndrome, Shiloh tells them later). Another woman, seemingly a little older, a little larger but also of special needs carries a second lemonade. Shiloh encourages them as they bring the agents their drinks, then introduces them as Amy and Jamie, his daughters.
The two girls stand in front of the agents where they sit, between the agents and Shiloh, blocking Shiloh from view, as if they are waiting for a reaction. Nixon and Rayner talk to Shiloh around the girls. Shiloh tells them no one wanted to be in the club when the FBI was around, people come there to get away from things like them. The daughters hold out the trays for the still unsipped lemonades, they take the full glasses and leave the room. Shiloh takes the agents onto a balcony to get a good look at 'what it is the town has to lose, when they upset people'. He accuses them of driving Hildred to her death, it's his job to make sure the 'fragile ecosystem' of the town is taken care of. Shiloh points out a farm, and calls it a gift from God. It provides an endless supply of wealth that he harvests to feed his 'children' below. Rayner points out Shiloh's looking for scapegoats, blaming them for the 'clearly mentally ill' Hildred's death. Shiloh has never seen any 'official documentation' on the other disappearances. He implies they have their own sense of justice out here, and the agents question the legality of that system.
Shiloh gestures behind the two agents, where Amy and Jamie have appeared with three glasses of wine, Shiloh takes one and motions for them to take the others. “We're on the clock,” Rayner responds. Shiloh intones, “'This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this as often as you drink it in remembrance of me.'” He continues, “I give you full access to the town, anything you need, you may have... I will instruct the sheriff not to hinder you and then you will leave, once you have completed your investigation.”
Emery says she needs to use the restroom and Shiloh has his daughters guide her. While they walk, all the employees of the club smile and nod at the two daughters, never talking to them. The girls escort Emery into the bathroom and stand, motionless outside the stall. Emery checks her phone and gives the toilet a phantom flush.
Rayner and Shiloh speak more about the missing Cindy, and how it seems more important that the town's reputation be upheld than the truth is uncovered. Shiloh tells him the search for Cindy included everyone in the town and covered the entire valley. Shiloh says that the homeless 'serve their purpose, they let everyone know how bad it could be.'
While washing her hands, Emery brings up Cindy Baker and the two women attack her. She ducks out of the way and the women's hands smash into the mirror behind her. The women see the blood on their hands and scream. Two wait staff run in at the screams, followed by Shiloh and Rayner. Shiloh comforts the girls and tells the agents that they should leave, Emery tries to apologize but Amy lashes out at her again so they just leave.
Sheriff Asim is waiting for them outside, he tells the driver he'll take them into town. He tells them that Cindy was the girls' tutor, she had a real connection to the girls. Then he mentions he got a memo to give them access to whatever they want, so he'll be their personal chauffeur. The sheriff confronts them again, calling them assholes. They talk about Shiloh, and why he gets to tell the sheriff what to do. They ask about the farm Shiloh mentioned, Brooke Greer is the name on the deed, but James Greer runs the farm and their son Jimmy lives there as well. They grow the grapes and slaughter the hogs. They arrive at the school to pick up the agents' car.
Decker and Posy discover a line on one of the papers: Healing Spirit = ally. Decker knows that the Healing Spirit shop is owned by Kelly Hadley, a member of the city council. Posy has decoded some of the symbols they've found, 'death' features prominently in the writings. She believes she's decoded the drawing that Hildred made, it roughly translates to: Death/You. The symbol on the Welcome to Kolob sign she decodes as 'death' as well. Posy reveals that her grandmother had left her a note when she moved in “If you ever have a daughter, move.” Posy's mother moved out of town when she had Posy, and now Posy is back, and she is nervous.
Decker wants to talk to Hadley and they drive to Healing Spirit. The door immediately opens to Posy's knock and Verner Florence greets them and brings them inside. He tells them Kelly knew they were coming and she told him to help them. Verner pulls a piece of paper from his pocket with Kelly's instructions, seeing him do this compels Decker to check his own pockets and he discovers another sheet of paper there. A crumpled diary entry, in the handwriting of a little girl, marked March 18th. On the entry is drawing of a six-legged creature with eight eyes, like a cross between a squid and a spider.
Verner disregards Decker's paper and reads off his instructions: greet them while I am at the meeting, bring them to the back, have them touch the crystal, do not let them leave.
As soon as Decker and Posy both touch the crystal, they feel their consciousnesses leave their bodies and enter into the viewpoint of someone, muffled and dark, swaying as it enters a building. The building is clean and white, and as this persons viewpoint is walking through, the hall is lined with wax busts of former presidents and celebrities. One light in the distance glows as they approach. Nine individuals wait there, Decker recognizes them as people from the city council (Randy Evelynn, Erin Setter, Gabby Bobby, Ashley Jewel, Lauren Hillary, Dr. Wallace Ronnie, Odell Tristen). One of them nods to the viewpoint, addressing them as Kelly. In the back of the room is the owner of the local art gallery: Mallory Jenkins.
They are discussing the problem of the agents, who may bring down everything, and need to be dealt with. “We have been told, by Asim, that they will most likely be headed to the farm. They will find nothing, do not fear. But if they dig deeper, we need to be prepared to move. Now, there are more pressing matters. If we are to repair the spine and close the loop, Mallory must be on his way, and it is unfortunate that, under these circumstances, we must lose one of our most valued members. But without him, we would crumble, so we must vote for a new member in Mallory's absence. Mallory: you may leave and collect the Seed.”
All the names put forth for new members are business owners of the town. They miss the name of the appointee as Verner breaks their connection to ask if it is working. Posy and Decker immediately place their hands on the crystal. “We must, at all costs, fulfill our duty. If it falls upon the Bull, then so be it, for they should never reach the Totem. The Farm will make the move tonight.” Kelly leaves the meeting and the connection is broken.
Verner says they mustn't speak to Kelly, but he will help them in her place. He tells them the Bull is the sheriff. The Totem, Verner assumes, is Kolob, the hill, the totem at the top. He tells them that Posy's grandmother was close to unveiling. Close to closing the Loop. The Loop is the 'cycle of everything'. The Fawn is the principal, December. He doesn't know what the Lock is. The Voice is the preacher and the Temple is the church. The Hive is the people of Kolob. The Gate is a doorway, a leading to somewhere, pushing you out or bringing something in. Both can be very bad. Verner tells them that Cindy was smart, and 'it' likes the smart ones, he repeats that phrase.
“Are the girls alive?” Posy asks. “Define,” Verner responds. “Can they come back?” she asks. Verner laughs. They take 'the smart ones' to the Totem, aka the country club. Verner will not let them leave, it is on the list. The Bull is looking for them.
Nixon and Rayner discuss the farm in their motel room. A folder slides under the door, it contains the case files for Cindy Baker, no one is outside when they open the door. It's a slim file that tells the basic story everyone has told them. Minus some of the details like the finding of the backpack. The motel phone rings, December is looking for Sam. She's found some of Cindy's art and has thought of some other information, if they want to stop by tonight, she lives across the street and she's made pie.
After Nixon mocks Rayner for a bit, they walk across the street to December's house, she is waving from her porch. They walk into the house, a small folder and a pink backpack sit on the dining room table. December somehow made her way into the evidence room to get that backpack. Agent Nixon's phone vibrates a lot, so she steps outside, leaving Rayner and December alone together. December asks Rayner if he's married, comforting him and telling him it had to be something like widowing, a handsome man like him wouldn't be out in the wild, as she rubs his back. She shows him Cindy's drawings, they show a kid on a swing with a dog in the sunshine. Very normal.
Outside, Nixon checks her emails. All the emails that came through are from Director Johns, every one of them says 'Tuna'. Except the last one that reads: Sorry, that should be Petunia.
- Agent Nixon is quickly becoming frustrated by this town, she isn't entirely sure why. Her naturally calm demeanor is quickly eroding. The thought of violence and force being used to get needed information is becoming more appealing.
Chapter 5 Edit
We open on Deputy Decker and Posy Petunia, held against their will inside Healing Spirits by Verner. Decker tells Verner that they need to warn the FBI agents, but Verner says that keeping them there is for their protection. Decker puts a hand on Verner's shoulder and begins to talk to him softly, then pulls him into a choke hold. Once he is choked out, Decker handcuffs him to a pipe. Posy and Decker snoop around, discovering a safe in a back room. From the main shop they hear Verner stir awake, “I kept them here, I told you I would do it. My reward is waiting...” A red glow shines from Verner's eyes and the two smell smoke as a blaze lights up.
Decker finds the code for the safe among some papers and discovers a single VHS tape within. Posy runs to the back door, finding it locked. The fire rages, they grab the tape and some papers, Verner catches flame and begins to laugh. A chair smashes through the front window and they run for it, their clothes catch fire but they make it out. Severe burns cover their bodies and they look up to see Kelly standing over them, “This won't do at all...” she says as they black out.
- Agent Rayner doesn't know what it is about December, but he gets this loving feeling he can trust her. Maybe, to a fault. Was there something in that pie?
Chapter 6 Edit
Nixon walks back into December's house to find the woman and Rayner laughing and having pie. She tells them that she and Rayner should get on with their case. December gives them the backpack and art, then wraps up the rest of the pie for Rayner. They leave, and Nixon calls December a 'honey pot', Rayner tells her to lay off and they turn to see December in the window, staring at them, talking on the phone.
The drawings seem normal at first, as they examine them in the car, all swing sets and puppies. But soon enough a strange figure appears among them, the strange mix of spider and octopus. Sometimes up close, just a collection of eyes, and sometimes off in the distance. Among drawings of the Farm are two blond women, one shorter than the other. Something in Nixon's FBI brain gives her a hunch that the girls seem familiar. Is this the Farm? Are the women Amy and Jamie?
Nixon and Rayner scan some of the pictures into Nixon's laptop and set them to upload to the FBI server. On the satellite-direct 3G signal they have, it will take two and a half hours to upload. They set the upload, Nixon grabs her camera and they head out for the Farm. As they drive, the sun begins to rise, and they realize that they had spent longer than they thought at December's house. Rayner looks down at the pie dish in his hands to see that it is empty.
The agents have been driving for a time through rows and rows of grapes, as they approach the Farm they can smell the scent of dung. Pulling up to the Farm, Agent Nixon tells Rayner to take the lead because she is angry at their treatment in this town. A woman walks out to greet them, wiping blood from her hands. The woman, Brooke Greer, invites them in and rather bluntly asks them what they want.
They talk about Cindy and learn that all the kids come out to the farm, with the rest of the town, for the harvest. The agents suggest a tour of the grounds and the woman calls in James from his work. James 'tour' consists of pointing out “there's the field, and there's some other sh*t.” He then suggests Nixon lead him around and he'll describe what she is seeing.
Looking at a pile of bloody towels on the sink, agent Rayner asks about any sick animals. One of the stalls got backed up while they were slaughtering some hogs, Brooke explains. Rayner asks about Cindy, and after the usual resistance, hears more about how smart she was. The winter before Cindy's disappearance was a rough one for rain, as it happens about once every twenty years. Rayner hears the creak of a footstep in the house, but Brooke doesn't acknowledge it and claims no one else is there. When talking about the other disappearances, Brooke mentions that she wasn't the smartest in her age group, “Guess my hand was dealt for me.” Another creak sounds, closer this time. Brooke continues her denials about anyone else being there. Rayner checks the hall and comes back, this time standing behind the chair he was sitting in, another creak sounds right behind him, but no one is there. Rayner presses Brooke about the day Cindy went missing, she doesn't remember much, but the rains picked up soon after, “God willing.” Brooke makes a crass remark to distract him, but Rayner hears a creak and dodges the ax that was aimed for his head.
Standing behind him is a large, scarred individual wearing the skinned hide from the head of a goat over his face, the ax he swung is planted in the table. Rayner draws his sidearm and fires.
Ten minutes earlier, Nixon and James are on their 'tour'. James points out the cellar, “a good place to hide kids, huh?” he sarcastically asks. Nixon tells him to lead the way, rows and rows of canned food line the cellar, James says they are prepared for the end of the world. James asks why agent Nixon in particular is in Kolob, and does she believe in God? Nixon believes in a higher power and finding those who others don't care about, ever since a girl she knew, also named Cindy, went missing from her town.
Nixon hears the sound of liquid, like running water, there are pipes behind the walls of the cellar. James talks about keeping the grapes growing year round. “There's a trick to it...can't imagine people would like it, PETA freaks and stuff like that...sometimes it's better to remain in the dark on things.” Pigs blood feeds these crops, all the crops in the town. “It's the way God wants it. We're not ones to ask questions, we're ones to follow his will.” At this point they hear the sound of gunshots from the main house. The door to the cellar slams shut.
Blood spurts from the goat-man's shoulder and hits Rayner's face, he hears footsteps recede and wipes the blood from his glasses. Brooke comes at him with a knife, and he shoots her in the head. Her dead body collides with him and slides down to the ground. In the other room, down a dark hallway he hears, “No! You killed ma!” Rayner backs toward the front door, gun up. Exiting the house, he dodges a shovel wielded by James, he aims the gun at James and pulls the trigger on an empty chamber. James smiles and the shovel comes down.
- Agent Rayner remembers a peculiar conversation with a fellow trainee back in the academy, out of the blue agent in training West grabbed him by the shoulder and said "Beware the field of pig shit, it will end you."
- After the near death experience, Posy now has a fear of any open flames.
Chapter 7 Edit
Deputy Decker comes to consciousness in the back of a car, the left side of his face is burned and his eye is glued shut, possibly burned away. Kelly is taking them to the hospital. The car comes to a stop, the Sheriff's car is blocking the road ahead, “The Bull knows.” Kelly says, “Can you walk? Do you remember everything?” she asks. She tells them to roll out of her car while she speeds toward the sheriff's car. They throw themselves out of the car and Kelly slams into the police car with a crash. Deputy Decker swears he sees a large, bull headed creature rise from the inside of the Sheriff's car, tearing the door off.
They limp off down the street and Decker 'commandeers' a car for them. They drive to the motel and look for the FBI agents. The door to 3A is ajar, no one is there but it looks like someone was in the room recently. The phone rings and Decker answers, it's Director Johnson looking for Rayner. He tells them that he sent Janice Petunia to Kolob years ago, she was a good agent but she died there. They tell him to send backup, and tell him all they have found. Director Johnson asks them to find a way to get the information to him because he can't send anyone else. He gives them the number 1-111-1111, to leave a message at and tells them to get him the information “before you die.”
Posy puts the tape that they found in the VHS/TV combo in the room. An induction message for the Kolob council plays. A man speaks of life in Kolob' being above human, evolutionarily speaking, and that it is synonymous with the Kingdom of God and that this is by design. They are chosen by the Gate to act as a conduit to God, to His home in the stars. He talks about Earth's impeding recycling, and that Kolob has chosen to strengthen the Earth for God's impending annihilation and return. “Kolob, quite literally, is the heart of the Gate. The Heart must be fed. The Vermin supply a steady supply of supplemental energy, and the Farm, the Blood for its veins. Every twenty years, on the verge of resurrection, the Heart needs a new host. The Fawn is in place to provide the brightest and most capable of Kolob to act as the Spire. Communication with the Gate's Spire is permissible only by the Totem, the Totem alone will pass on the word of God to you.” (See the full, amazing town council video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LLcL4f6SW8 )
With a final plea to them to get the evidence out of Kolob somehow and to survive as long as they can, Johnson hangs up. Bailey finds them in the room and they tell her they were looking for the agents and they leave. Decker tells Posy to drive them to the homeless camp, however, the street is blocked off due to the recent crash and clogged with bystanders. So, the two continue on foot, Posy is overwhelmed as she loses her hope.
- Posy realizes she was holding onto the crystal in her left hand. The fire has left small cracks which burn with a dull fiery glow. (Zac modifies this with: the crystal is gone, but her hand has a glowing, rock like crust inside the burn marks.) She begins hearing whispers from random people she doesn't know.
- Gabriel, the visions are getting worse. She's reaching out for you, singing so sweetly. She's missed you so much Gabe.
Chapter 8 Edit
Inside the cellar, agent Nixon hears the lock open and a brief moment of light from above blinds her, as her partner's limp body lands in front of her. She wakes him up, and Rayner tells Nixon what happened. Outside James and the goat man argue about what to do with them. Nixon points her weapon at the cellar door, aiming to shoot the lock off, the tattoo of her brother on her arm fills her with hope that ultimately goes unfulfilled.
Nixon fires, and they hear the goat man yell, but the lock remains. Hearing the goat man's yell spurs Nixon to empty her clip through the door. They hear James tell the goat man that they need to turn them over to the Temple. They hear the sound of an ax meeting flesh and a drip of blood seeps through the door. They hear a dragging sound and a rush of pig's blood flows into the cellar through the bullet holes.
Chapter 9 Edit
Decker and Posy have made their way to the river, burned and limping. They take a plastic bag and shove what evidence they have inside it, including the VHS tape, along with a note that explains who Posy is and what is happening here.
Decker leads them to the homeless camp. A group of ten men are gathered there and inside one of the tents is a partially eaten young woman. Decker eats some of their offered beans but Posy mimes eating them and drops them down the back of her shirt. They insist, and she takes another spoonful, this time eating it. The world around them goes red and they see visions of a small girl in a tunnel, “Please, I don't wanna be here anymore.” she pleads. The young girl is hooked up to a device that pumps blood from her into a massive heart, pulsing with gold energy, and back through the girl. The man from the VHS appears and makes a silencing motion with a finger on his lips, “Shhhhh.”
The homeless men start saying “No, no, no.” Decker drags another homeless man away, looking for another symbol. This one is two brackets, almost an open circle. The man lays there gasping and Decker tells Posy to duct tape the evidence to him. After she does, she thinks back to the symbol that drove Hildred mad, and she feels it's power course through her body. She loses control of herself as she begins to speak in the language of the symbols. Her hand begins to glow as the rock dust begins to glow and vibrate as the homeless man's symbol in his chest does the same. The homeless man lifts into the air, chest up. Posy puts her hand onto the man, his body begins to disintegrate and contort. Decker takes the man and tosses him and the evidence into the river.
The other nine homeless men open their shirts to reveal glowing symbols and saying “No, no, no.” Two of the men stand up, “Feed, feed,” they say as Posy's hand lifts toward them and they start to hover off of the ground and burn and wither. Her hand continues to pulse until the men are gone.
Decker goes to the nearest house and barges in, not paying any attention to who answers the door. He grabs a phone and dials 1-111-1111. He leaves a message detailing what they've done with the evidence. Once that is done, he hears a scream. He turns around to see the home's owner, Raven Marty, impaled upon the wall. The Bull stands in the open doorway.
“I was hoping I'd see you before I died,” Decker says as he draws his sidearm and fires, hitting the Sheriff in the head. His head snaps back and he begins to fall, but he stands back straight, horns grow from his head and his eyes glow red, the energy trailing into the sky. “You are messing with things you don't understand. I can't let you leave this room.” The Bull says in a demonic voice. He turns toward Posy's glowing hand, his eyes pulse red, and his head twitches to the side “Feed...the Heart,” the Bull says, lowering his head and charging her. Posy is impaled through the stomach upon his horns, but her hand lands atop his head, his scalp begins to burn.
Decker brings the butt of his gun down upon the place where her hand is touching, he can feel the skull cracking. Posy's hand reaches through his head and she rips his spine free of his body. The Bull collapses and Decker and Posy huddle together.
The blood in the cellar is up to the agents' waists, they start bashing the hinges of the cellar door with whatever comes to hand. They loosen the door and push through the river of blood, James lays dead on the ground, ax still in him, and the goat man is bleeding form the shoulder, bent over attaching something to his leg. Rayner grabs the ax and Nixon takes this moment to express her feelings for him. The goat man charges.
A surge of hope flows through Rayner as Nixon shoots the goat man. The goat man lays on the ground, bleeding out, “God will protect me,” he begins, “And the Lord smelled a sweet savior, and the Lord said in his heart 'I will not again curse the ground anymore for man's sake, for the imagination of man's heart is evil from misuse. Neither will I again smite anymore everything living as I have done.'” The goat man dies.
Nixon tries to backtrack on her declaration of love, but Rayner leans in to kiss her. He finds himself thinking of December though.
Returning to their car, the agents see a large bonfire atop the hill, near the country club. Shiloh's voice comes over the radio “Our sheriff is dead. Members of our council are dead. We know who the perpetrators are...it is up to you all to stop them...We will replace the Bull and regain control of Kolob.” Agent Rayner teeters on the brink of madness as another candle goes out.
- Rayner's missed his wife so much since her suicide. He has accepted that tonight may be the night he gets to see her again.
- After watching the tape and writing down all of the evidence, Posy feels that what is happening in the Town needs to keep happening.
- The FBI agents remember a happier time. A week before they heard about this case, they were having pizza in a Manhattan restaurant, they will never be that happy again.
- GM: The sheriff is dead. December has been tasked with finding the new Bull. She has a good idea of someone. She is pregnant with his kid after all. The new fawn will be born soon. (Zac misreads this as Posy instead of December.)
Chapter 10 Edit
Posy looks down at her hand, it shifts and vibrates. Something is clear to her, something is missing. The structure of the Town itself is falling apart. She hears whispers: “the Spire...the Spire. The Temple. The Totem. The Gate is closing, the Gate is closing, we must protect the Gate.” Posy follows the trail of light passing through her arms, illuminating the muscles underneath. The light moves through her, down to her stomach, she opens her shirt to reveal a fetus growing within her. Posy begins to choke Decker, as she does she sees a vision of horns growing from his head. It becomes clear to her, the Bull must be replaced, the loop must be closed, to protect the town and the future Fawn that rests inside her womb.
“It was us! It was always us!” she tells him, “This is why we're here.” Worried, Decker cuffs her hands to protect them both. He tells her that they should go the fire, to Shiloh. She agrees too readily, so he leaves her cuffed. Decker sees that everyone in the town is heading up the hill to the bonfire, he moves to blend into the crowd but the light from Posy's stomach causes the crowd to part, and the townsfolk begin to help the two up the hill.
As the crowd closes behind Posy and Decker, the agents pull up behind the mob. They decide to turn and head for the edge of town. Before Nixon can turn the car around a little girl sees them sitting in the car, she points and screams. The mob of townsfolk turn on them and leave Decker and Posy to go up the hill. Nixon revs the engine and smashes into the crowd, running down the child and a few more of them before smashing into a building. The mob floods around the car, smashing the windows with rocks.
Amy and Jamie stand at the top of the hill, waiting for Posy, they take her inside. Shiloh tells Decker that he has a new position for him, then takes him inside to care for his burns. The fetus inside Posy begins to grow faster and faster as the two girls escort her further into the country club where they push aside a bookcase and place their hands onto the wall. The wall ahead opens up and Posy smells the stink of rotting flesh. As she makes her way down a tunnel Posy sees a golden glow move across the walls, she hears the beating of a giant heart getting closer and closer. The bookcase closes behind Posy, and she is never seen again.
Additional Notes: Edit
- Town hierarchy from bottom to top: the Vermin, the Hive, the Temple (The Gospel of the Truth), The Voice (the preacher in the Temple), the Lock (the Farm/Winery), The Fawn, the Wall (the lawyer, keeper of secrets), the Council, the Bull, and then the Totem.