While this was going on, it seemed that I was always now running into Wayne, for one reason or another. This saddened me: first, because it confirmed my suspicion that the man had been feigning friendship all along. But second and much worse, he began to let slip hints about rituals and hidden lore and secret orders. Ritual magic, in other words.
Even before I took up residence in the house I was skeptical about magicians and rituals and the rest of that claptrap. The field of occultism is full of outright frauds, hyper-credulous babblers, and the occasional half-demented scholar who could not explain a truly uncanny event even when it was veritably manifesting in front of their nose. And I have met them all, usually just before they asked me for fifty dollars. Of the lot, I liked the frauds best: they knew when to cut their losses early, and never presumed on their welcome.
I normally found true believers in ritual magic annoying, in other words. But now that I had actually found something definitely supernatural? My reaction to true believers was, if anything, worse. There are some things that simply cannot be read in a grimoire; and if you have not directly experienced those things, then you cannot understand them, and it will be obvious that you do not understand. At least, it will be obvious to those of us who have directly experienced those things. Which I now have; and it was increasingly obvious to me that Wayne had not.