Don Juan said,
"This is the appropriate time of
day for doing what I am asking you to do. It takes a moment
to engage the necessary attention to do it. Don't stop until
you catch that fleeting black shadow."
I did see some strange fleeting
black shadow projected on the foliage of the trees. It was
either a shadow going back and forth or various fleeting shadows
moving side-to-side or straight up in the air.
They looked like a fat black fish to
me, enormous fish. It was as if gigantic swordfish were flying
in the air. I was engrossed in the sight. Then, finally, it
It became to dark to see the
foliage, yet I could still see the fleeting black shadows.
"What is it, don Juan?" I asked.
"[Long ago, the native
sorcerer/shamans of Mexico] discovered that we have a
companion for life," he said, as clearly as he could.
have a predator that came from the depths of the cosmos, and
took over the rule of our lives. Human beings are its
prisoners. The predator is our lord and master. It has
rendered us docile; helpless. If we want to protest, it
suppresses our protest. If we want to act independently, it
demands that we don't do so."
It was very dark around us, and that
seemed to curtail any expression on my part. If it had been
daylight, I would have laughed my head off. In the dark, I felt
"It's pitch black around us,"
don Juan said, "but if you look out of the corner of your
eye, you will still see fleeting shadows jumping all around
He was right. I could still see
Their movement made me dizzy. Don
Juan turned on the light, and that seemed to dissipate
Don Juan said,
"You have arrived, by your
effort alone, to what the shamans of ancient Mexico called
the topic of topics. I have been beating around the bush all
this time, insinuating to you that something is holding us
prisoner. Indeed we are held prisoner! This was an energetic
fact for the sorcerers of ancient Mexico."
"Why has this predator taken
over in the fashion that you're describing, don Juan?" I
asked. "There must be a logical explanation."
"There is an explanation," don Juan replied, "which is the
simplest explanation in the world. They took over because we
are food for them, and they squeeze us mercilessly because
we are their sustenance. Just as we rear chickens in chicken
coops, gallineros, the predators rear us in human coops,
humaneros. Therefore, their food is always available to
I felt that my head was shaking
violently from side to side.
I could not express my profound
sense of unease and discontentment, but my body moved to bring
it to the surface. I shook from head to toe without any volition
on my part.
I heard myself saying,
"No, no, no, no. This is absurd,
don Juan. What you're saying is something monstrous. It
simply can't be true, for sorcerers, or for average men, or
"Why not?" don Juan asked calmly. "Why not? Because it
"Yes, it infuriates me," I retorted. "Those claims are
"Well," he said, "you haven't heard all the claims yet. Wait
a bit longer and see how you feel."
"I'm going to subject you to a
blitz. That is, I'm going to subject your mind to tremendous
onslaughts; and you cannot get up and leave because you're
caught. Not because I'm holding you prisoner, but because
something in you will prevent you from leaving while another
part of you is going to go truthfully berserk. So brace
There was something in me which I
felt was a 'glutton for punishment'.
He was right. I wouldn't have left
the house for the world; and yet I didn't like one bit the
inanities he was spouting.
Don Juan said,
"I want to appeal to your
analytical mind. Think for a moment, and tell me how you
would explain the contradiction between the intelligence of
man the engineer, and the stupidity of his systems of
beliefs; or the stupidity of his contradictory behavior.
Sorcerers believe that the
predators have given us our systems of beliefs; our ideas of
good and evil; our social mores. The predators are the ones
who set up our hopes and expectations, and dreams of success
or failure. They have given us covetousness, greed, and
cowardice. It is the predators who make us complacent,
routinary, and egomaniacal."
"But how can they do this, don
Juan?" I asked, somehow angered further by what he was
saying. "Do they whisper all that in our ears while we are
"No, they don't do it that way. That's idiotic!" don Juan
said, smiling. "They are infinitely more efficient and
organized than that."
In order to keep us obedient, meek and
weak, the predators engaged themselves in a stupendous
maneuver- stupendous, of course, from the point of view of a
fighting strategist; a horrendous maneuver from the point of
view of those who suffer it. They gave us their mind! Do you
The predators give us their mind which becomes our
mind. The predators' mind is baroque, contradictory, morose,
and filled with the fear of being discovered any minute now.
"I know that even though you have never suffered hunger," he
went on, "you have food anxiety which is none other than the
anxiety of the predator who fears that any moment now its
maneuver is going to be uncovered, and its food is going to
be denied. Through the mind, which after all is their mind,
the predators inject into the lives of human beings whatever
is convenient for them. The predators ensure in this manner
a degree of security to act as a buffer against their fear."
"It's not that I can't accept all this at face value, don
Juan," I said. "I could, but there's something so odious
about it that it actually repels me. It forces me to take a
contradictory stand. "If it's true that they eat us, how do
they do it?"
Don Juan had a broad smile on his
He was as pleased as punch. He
explained that sorcerers see infant human beings as strange,
luminous balls of energy covered from the top to the bottom with
a glowing coat something like a plastic cover that is adjusted
tightly over their cocoon of energy.
He said that that glowing coat of
awareness was what the predators consumed, and that when a human
being reached adulthood, all that was left of that glowing coat
of awareness was a narrow fringe that went from the ground to
the top of the toes. That fringe permitted mankind to continue
living, but only barely.
As if I were in a dream, I heard don
Juan explaining that, to his knowledge, man was the only species
that had the glowing coat of awareness outside that luminous
Therefore, he became easy prey for
an awareness of a different order; such as the heavy awareness
of the predator.
He then made the most damaging statement he had made so far. He
said that this narrow fringe of awareness was the epicenter of
self-reflection where man was irremediably caught. By playing on
our self-reflection, which is the only point of awareness left
to us, the predators create flares of awareness that they
proceed to consume in a ruthless, predatory fashion.
They give us inane problems that
force those flares of awareness to rise, and in this manner they
keep us alive in order for them to be fed with the energetic
flare of our pseudo-concerns. There must have been something in
what don Juan was saying which was so devastating to me that at
that point I actually got sick to my stomach.
After a moment's pause long enough for me to recover, I asked
"But why is it that the
sorcerers of ancient Mexico and all sorcerers today,
although they see the predators, don't do anything about
"There's nothing that you and I can do about it," don Juan
said in a grave, sad voice. "All we can do is discipline
ourselves to the point where they will not touch us.
"How can you ask your fellow men to go through those rigors
of discipline? They'll laugh and make fun of you; and the
more aggressive ones will beat the shit out of you... and
not so much because they don't believe it. Down in the
depths of every human being, there is an ancestral, visceral
knowledge about the predators' existence."
My analytical mind swung back and
forth like a yo-yo.
It left me and came back, and left
me and came back again. Whatever don Juan was proposing was
preposterous, incredible. At the same time, it was a most
reasonable thing; so simple. It explained every kind of human
contradiction I could think of.
But how could one have taken all
Don Juan was pushing me into the path of an avalanche that would
take me down forever. I felt another wave of a threatening
sensation. The wave didn't stem from me, yet it was attached to
me. Don Juan was doing something to me, mysteriously positive
and terribly negative at the same time. I sensed it as an
attempt to cut a thin film that seemed to be glued to me.
His eyes were fixed on mine in an
He moved his eyes away, and began to
talk without looking at me anymore.
"Whenever doubts plague you to a
dangerous point," he said, "do something pragmatic about it.
Turn off the light. Pierce the darkness; find out what you
He got up to turn off the lights.
I stopped him.
"No, no, don Juan," I said,
"don't turn off the lights. I'm doing okay."
What I felt then was a most unusual,
for me, fear of the darkness. The mere thought of it made me
I definitely knew something
viscerally, but I wouldn't dare touch it, or bring it to the
surface, not in a million years!
"You saw the fleeting shadows
against the trees," don Juan said, sitting back against his
"That's pretty good. I'd like
you to see them inside this room. You're not seeing
anything. You're just merely catching fleeting images. You
have enough energy for that."
I feared that don Juan would get up
anyway and turn off the lights, which he did. Two seconds later,
I was screaming my head off. Not only did I catch a glimpse of
those fleeting images, I heard them buzzing by my ears.
Don Juan doubled up with laughter as
he turned on the lights.
"What a temperamental fellow!"
he said. "A total disbeliever, on the one hand; and a total
pragmatist on the other. You must arrange this internal
fight, otherwise you're going to swell up like a big toad
Don Juan kept on pushing his barb
deeper and deeper into me.
"The sorcerers of ancient
Mexico," he said, "saw the predator. They called it the
flyer because it leaps through the air. It is not a pretty
sight. It is a big shadow, impenetrably dark, a black shadow
that jumps through the air. Then, it lands flat on the
"The sorcerers of ancient Mexico were quite ill at ease with
the idea of when it made its appearance on Earth. They
reasoned that man must have been a complete being at one
point, with stupendous insights and feats of awareness that
are mythological legends nowadays. And then everything seems
to disappear, and we have now a sedated man."
I wanted to get angry and call him a
paranoiac, but somehow the righteousness that was usually just
underneath the surface of my being wasn't there.
Something in me was beyond the point
of asking myself my favorite question: What if all that he said
At the moment he was talking to me
that night, in my heart of hearts, I felt that all of what he
was saying was true, but at the same time and with equal force,
I felt that all that he was saying was absurdity itself.
"What are you saying, don Juan?"
I asked feebly. My throat was constricted. I could hardly
"What I'm saying is that what we have against us is not a
simple predator. It is very smart and organized. It follows
a methodical system to render us useless. Man, the magical
being that he is destined to be, is no longer magical. He's
an average piece of meat.
There are no more dreams for man
but the dreams of an animal who is being raised to become a
piece of meat: trite, conventional, imbecilic."
Don Juan's words were eliciting a
strange, bodily reaction in me comparable to the sensation of
It was as if I were going to get
sick to my stomach again. But the nausea was coming from the
bottom of my being, from the marrow of my bones. I convulsed
involuntarily. Don Juan shook me by the shoulders forcefully. I
felt my neck wobbling back and forth under the impact of his
grip. The maneuver calmed me down at once.
I felt more in control.
"This predator," don Juan said,
"which, of course, is an inorganic being, is not altogether
invisible to us as other inorganic beings are. I think as
children we do see it, but we decide it's so horrific that
we don't want to think about it. Children, of course, could
insist on focusing on the sight, but everybody else around
them dissuades them from doing so.
The only alternative left for
mankind is discipline. Discipline is the only deterrent. But
by discipline I don't mean harsh routines. I don't mean
waking up every morning at five-thirty and throwing cold
water on yourself until you're blue. Sorcerers understand
discipline as the capacity to face with serenity odds that
are not included in our expectations.
For sorcerers, discipline is an
art; the art of facing infinity without flinching; not
because they are strong and tough, but because they are
filled with awe."
"In what way would the sorcerers' discipline be a deterrent
to the flyers?" I asked.
Don Juan scrutinized my face as if
to discover any signs of my disbelief.
"Sorcerers say that discipline
makes the glowing coat of awareness unpalatable to the
The result is that the predators become bewildered.
An inedible glowing coat of awareness is not part of their
cognition, I suppose. After being bewildered, they don't
have any recourse other than refraining from continuing
their nefarious task. If the predators don't eat our glowing
coat of awareness for a while, it will keep on growing.
"Simplifying this matter to the extreme, I can say that
sorcerers, by means of their discipline, push the predators
away long enough to allow their glowing coat of awareness to
grow beyond the level of the toes. Once it goes beyond the
level of the toes, it grows back to its natural size.
sorcerers of ancient Mexico used to say that the glowing
coat of awareness is like a tree. If it is not pruned, it
grows to its natural size and volume. As awareness reaches
levels higher than the toes, tremendous maneuvers of
perception become a matter of course.
"The grand trick of those sorcerers of ancient times was to
burden the flyers' mind with discipline. Sorcerers found out
that if they taxed the flyers' mind with inner silence, the
foreign installation would flee, and give any one of the
practitioners involved in this maneuver the total certainty
of the mind's foreign origin.
The [alien mind control of these
creatures] comes back, I assure you, but not as strong; and
a process begins in which the fleeing of the flyers' mind
becomes routine until one day it flees permanently.
"That's the day when you have to rely on your own devices
which are nearly zero. A sad day indeed! There's no one to
tell you what to do. There's no mind of foreign origin to
dictate the imbecilities you're accustomed to. My teacher,
the nagual Julian, used to warn all his disciples that this
was the toughest day in a sorcerer's life for the real mind
that belongs to us. The sum total of our experience after a
lifetime of domination has been rendered shy, insecure, and
Personally, I would say that the
real battle of sorcerers begins at that moment. The rest is
I became genuinely agitated.
I wanted to know more, and yet a
strange feeling in me clamored for me to stop. It alluded to
dark results and punishment, something like the wrath of God
descending on me for tampering with something veiled by God
I made a supreme effort to allow my
curiosity to win. I heard myself say,
"What-what-what do you mean, by
taxing the flyers' mind?"
"Discipline taxes the foreign mind no end," he replied. "So,
through their discipline, sorcerers vanquish the foreign
I was overwhelmed by his statements.
I believed that don Juan was either
certifiably insane or that he was telling me something so
awesome that it froze everything in me. I noticed, however how
quickly I rallied my energy to deny everything he had said.
After an instant of panic, I began
to laugh, as if don Juan had told me a joke. I even heard myself
"Don Juan, don Juan, you're
Don Juan seemed to understand
everything I was experiencing. He shook his head from side to
side, and raised his eyes to the heavens in a gesture of mock
"I am so incorrigible, that I am
going to give the flyers' mind which you carry inside you
one more jolt. I am going to reveal to you one of the most
extraordinary secrets of sorcery. I am going to describe to
you a finding that took sorcerers thousands of years to
verify and consolidate."
He looked at me, smiled maliciously,
"The flyers' mind flees forever
when a sorcerer succeeds in grabbing on to the vibrating
force that holds us together as a conglomerate of energy
fields. If a sorcerer maintains that pressure long enough,
the flyers' mind flees in defeat.
And that's exactly what
you are going to do; hold on to the energy that binds you
I had the most inexplicable reaction
I could have imagined. Something in me actually shook, as if it
had received a jolt. I entered into a state of unwarranted fear,
which I immediately associated with my religious background.
Don Juan looked at me from head to toe.
"You are fearing the wrath of
God, aren't you?" he said. "Rest assured, that's not your
fear. It's the flyers' fear, because it knows that you will
do exactly as I'm telling you."
His words did not calm me at all. I
I was actually convulsing
involuntarily, and I had no means to stop it.
"Don't worry," don Juan said
calmly. "I know for a fact that those attacks wear off very
quickly. The flyer's mind has no concentration whatsoever."
After a moment, everything stopped
as don Juan had predicted.
To say again that I was bewildered
is a euphemism. This was the first time in my life ever, with
don Juan or alone, that I didn't know whether I was coming or
going. I wanted to get out of the chair and walk around, but I
was deathly afraid. I was filled with rational assertions, and
at the same time I was filled with an infantile fear.
I began to breathe deeply as a cold
perspiration covered my entire body. I had somehow unleashed on
myself a most godawful sight: black, fleeting shadows jumping
all around me wherever I turned.
I closed my eyes and rested my head
on the arm of the stuffed chair.
"I don't know which way to turn,
don Juan," I said.
"Tonight, you have really succeeded in getting me lost." Don
Juan said, "You're being torn by an internal struggle. Down
in the depths of you, you know that you are incapable of
refusing the agreement that an indispensable part of you,
your glowing coat of awareness, is going to serve as an
incomprehensible source of nourishment to, naturally,
"And another part of you will stand against this situation
with all its might. The sorcerers' revolution is that they
refuse to honor agreements in which they did not
participate. Nobody ever asked me if I would consent to
being eaten by beings of a different kind of awareness.
parents just brought me into this world to be food, like
themselves, and that's the end of the story."
Don Juan stood up from his chair and
stretched his arms and legs.
"We have been sitting here for
hours. It's time to go into the house. I'm going to eat. Do
you want to eat with me?"
My stomach was in an uproar.
"I think you'd better go to
sleep," he said. "The blitz has devastated you."
I didn't need any further coaxing. I
collapsed onto my bed, and fell asleep like the dead.
[When I arrived] home, as time went by, the idea of the flyers
became one of the main fixations of my life. I got to the point
where I felt that don Juan was absolutely right about them. No
matter how hard I tried, I couldn't discard his logic.
The more I thought about it, and the
more I talked to and observed myself, and my fellow men, the
more intense the conviction that something was rendering us
incapable of any activity or any interaction or any thought that
didn't have the self as its focal point.
My concern, as well as the concern of everyone I knew or talked
to, was the self. Since I couldn't find any explanation for such
universal homogeneity, I believed that don Juan's line of
thought was the most appropriate way of elucidating the
I went as deeply as I could into
readings about myths and legends. In reading, I experienced
something I had never felt before: Each of the books I read was
an interpretation of myths and legends. In each one of those
books, a homogeneous mind was palpable.
The styles differed, but the drive
behind the words was homogeneously the same: Even though the
theme was something as abstract as myths and legends, the
authors always managed to insert statements about themselves.
The homogeneous drive behind every one of those books was not
the stated theme of the book. Instead, it was self-service. I
had never felt this before. I attributed my reaction to don
Juan's influence. The unavoidable question that I posed to
myself was: Is he influencing me to see this, or is there really
a foreign mind dictating everything we do?
I lapsed, perforce, into denial
again, and I went insanely from denial to acceptance to denial.
Something in me knew that whatever don Juan was driving at was
an energetic fact; but something equally important in me knew
that all of that was guff.
The end result of my internal struggle was a sense of
foreboding; the sense of something imminently dangerous coming
at me. I made extensive anthropological inquiries into the
subject of the flyers in other cultures, but I couldn't find any
references to them anywhere. Don Juan seemed to be the only
source of information about this matter.
The next time I saw him, I instantly jumped to talk about the
"I have tried my best to be
rational about this subject matter, but I can't. There are
moments when I fully agree with you about the predators."
"Focus your attention on the fleeting shadows that you
actually see," don Juan said with a smile. I told don Juan
that those fleeting shadows were going to be the end of my
rational life. I saw them everywhere. Since I had left his
house, I was incapable of going to sleep in the dark. To
sleep with the lights on did not bother me at all. The
moment I turned the lights off, however, everything around
me began to jump. I never saw complete figures or shapes.
All I saw were fleeting black shadows.
"The flyers' mind has not left you," don Juan said. "It has
been seriously injured. It's trying its best to rearrange
its relationship with you. But something in you is severed
forever. The flyer knows that. The real danger is that the
flyers' mind may win by getting you tired and forcing you to
quit by playing the contradiction between what it says and
what I say.
"You see, the flyers' mind has no competitors. When it
proposes something, it agrees with its own proposition, and
it makes you believe that you've done something of worth.
The flyers' mind will say to you that whatever Juan Matus is
telling you is pure nonsense, and then the same mind will
agree with its own proposition, 'Yes, of course, it is
nonsense,' you will say. That's the way they overcome us.
"The flyers are an essential part of the universe, and they
must be taken as what they really are; awesome, monstrous.
They are the means by which the universe tests us. We are
energetic probes created by the universe," he continued as
if he were oblivious to my presence, "and it's because we
are possessors of energy that has awareness that we are the
means by which the universe becomes aware of itself.
"The flyers are the implacable challengers. They cannot be
taken as anything else. If we succeed in doing that, the
universe allows us to continue."
In 1985, as usual, summer officially
ended on September 21, the fall equinox, which was just another
postcard-perfect day in Malibu.
Bert was still working even though
it was very quiet at the beach. All the kids were supposed to be
back in school and Bert's seasonal job was nearly at an end. In
some ways, those last few weeks of work felt more like a paid
While stationed at the public walkway, Bert could visually
survey the entire private beach. He had a weathered, old,
circular, redwood table and a folding chair. His surfboard was
leaning up against a brick wall that defined the public walkway,
and his ATV was parked nearby. As usual, one of the local dogs,
a wet and sandy golden retriever, stood by impatiently waiting
for someone to toss a tennis ball into the water.
Bert's girlfriend Mandy, and her friend Eva, had skipped school
and come to the beach for a visit.
Since he wasn't busy, Bert
invited the girls to go for a swim. While they splashed,
screamed, and laughed in the surf, Bert caught a few waves.
Afterwards, Bert took his surfboard over to a storage area at a
nearby beach house. He quickly put the board away, walked to the
other side of the house and took a hot, outdoor shower which was
a real luxury.
As he walked from the house back to the beach, he noticed a
young boy, who looked about eight-or-nine-years old, digging in
"Havin' fun?" Bert inquired.
"Yeah" the boy replied without smiling or looking up.
To Bert, it seemed odd that the boy
wasn't glad to be out of school and playing at the beach on such
a beautiful day.
Curious, Bert then noticed a large,
deep scar on the boy's forehead and wondered how he had got it,
but decided not to ask. Perhaps the kid was home from school
because he was feeling ill. Bert considered that a blow to the
head hard enough to create that type of scar could also cause
Realizing there was nothing he could do for the boy Bert
shrugged his shoulders and jogged back to his beach chair,
rapidly rubbed on some suntan lotion, and got comfortable. After
a few minutes, the intense sunlight had warmed his
copper-colored body to the bone and he began feeling very
relaxed and glad to be alive.
It was a rare moment that he wished
would last forever.
Suddenly, the shocking sound of a very large piece of plate
glass breaking rippled through the calm morning air which caused
Bert to reflexively turn his head toward the event as he jumped
up from his chair. He was surprised that, for some reason, time
seemed to slow down and his vision telescoped toward the sound.
The gut-wrenching sound had come
from the house where minutes earlier he had just taken a shower.
In a surreal moment, Bert saw a boy behind the glass. His head
violently bounced backwards after slamming into and shattering
the large, sliding glass door located on the second story of the
It was then that Bert realized it was the boy he had met just
minutes ago. Bert watched in horror as the boy reflexively
clutched both his hands to his bloody face. In the next instant,
a tall, adult man appeared from the shadows behind the boy and
swept him up in his arms. Then, time seemed to suddenly speed up
as massive amounts of adrenaline surged through Bert's body.
He sprinted to the beach house with
superhuman speed and quickly opened the door without knocking.
Although the owners of the house knew him well, Bert realized
the people using the house that day were just guests.
As he ran up the stairs, Bert didn't hear the boy screaming or
crying which worried him even more.
"Security!" he yelled as he
raced to the top of the stairs.
He then walked quickly into the
living room where the boy's grandmother was standing in shock.
The color had drained from her face
and she was staring into space like a statue.
"Has anyone... called 911?" Bert
asked while trying to catch his breath.
"My husband took Tommy to the bedroom to stop the bleeding."
"Did you call the paramedics?" Bert asked in deadly serious
tone, still trying to catch his breath.
As the grandmother
silently shook her head Bert spun around, quickly scanned
the room, found a phone, and called for help.
After he hung
up, he surveyed the scene.
"The paramedics are on their way and should be here very
soon. Do you have something I can clean up this glass with?"
"I guess so," she replied still in shock.
Bert searched the house and soon
found what he needed.
But as he was carefully cleaning up
the bloody, razor-sharp shards of broken glass, something
invisible touched him like a cold breeze, and the hair on the
back of his neck stood up.
Whatever it was, it caught one hundred and ten percent of Bert's
attention. At that moment, he had an illogical, horrifying
feeling that some kind of paranormal parasite was in the house,
and it was actually feeding off the negative energy generated by
the physical pain and fearful emotions of the traumatic event.
Bert didn't want to upset the
grandmother any further, but his curiosity and survival
instincts had now kicked into over drive.
"How did this happen?" He asked
while trying to appear calm.
"I'm just glad the sliding door was shut or... this could
have been a lot worse."
"I really can't explain it. He was just sitting there on the
floor in front of me. The next thing I knew... he was
running full speed across the room toward the balcony. If
the sliding door was open... he would have jumped over the
railing and fallen to his death."
"Look, I know it's really none of my business, but earlier I
saw your grandson playing out in front of the house and I
noticed he has a large scar on his forehead."
Looking puzzled she said,
"Yes, you're right, he does."
"May I ask how he got that?"
"It was about a year ago. He was in the back of his dad's
pickup truck playing with a cat. The cat jumped out of the
bed of the truck and Tommy jumped out after him head first
and hit his face on the trailer hitch. I probably shouldn't
tell you this, but for some strange reason, Tommy thinks he
Alarm bells suddenly went off in
Bert's head as he visualized the boy jumping out of the truck.
It was clear that something was very
wrong with this situation, but he instinctively knew this wasn't
the right time or place to deal with the problem: he needed more
information... and a plan.
Later, after the paramedics had stabilized the boy and drove off
with their sirens blaring, Bert walked slowly back to his post
with a pain in the pit of his stomach that felt like it was
draining his life force away; eating at his soul.
It was unlike anything he had ever
He was deeply troubled in a way he had never known and was
trying to stay calm in the midst of the mental chaos he was
experiencing. It was a survival technique he had learned during
his training as a Junior Lifeguard. He knew that if you get
caught in an undertow in the surf you don't panic because it
only makes things worse.
You have to save your energy until
you reach calmer waters and then swim for shore.
But, hard as he tried, Bert couldn't
shake the feeling there was something supernatural in that house
that had touched him and it was angry with him.