Tending the Stones for the Lock, XXIII

22nd part of the new weekly story.  (1st Part)   The inspiration for this came from an off hand comment I made on Facebook, and since people seemed interested I decided to follow through.  Happy Reading. 

(1st Part) (2nd Part)  (3rd Part) (4th Part) (5th Part) (6th Part) (7th Part) (8th Part) (9th Part)(Part 10) (Part 11)(Part 12)(Part 13)(Part 14)(Part 15)(Part 16)(Part 17)(Part 18) (Part 19) (Part 20) (Part 21) (Part 22)  (Part 23)


“I am a healer let me do my job.”

“You are a quack and you are not coming onto my plane.”

“First off, it is not your plane, second off I am a Harvard educated physician who did my residency at John Hopkins.”

Ms. Mulan put her hands on her hips and then held up her hands counting off with her fingers as she made her points.  “A, I am the pilot of this plane so I am in charge of the plane, therefore it is my plane.  B, you gave up your practice to travel the world and you lost your license because the AMA lost track of you as I did when you went on walkabout from the hospital in Nepal.”

“Oh so this is personal M and M.”

Mary Mulan winced at the use of her initials.

“Mary as much as I would love to stand on this wonderful runway and argue with you about what I may or may not have done the High Pilgrim sent for me and I am pretty sure he is paying the bills on this charter technically it is his plane.”

Mary rolled her eyes and stepped out of the way.


“I am fine.”

“If that is true than the doctor will say so until then you stay in bed.”

Brodie sighed and laid back on the bed staring at the ceiling.

“Knock, knock.”   A smiling blonde haired man with a mustache and goatee poked his head into the small room.

“Austin?”  Holly said taking a step away from the bed and hugging the man as he came into the room, right after she hugged him she gave him a very hard open hand slapped the man.

Brodie observed this and was very confused and from the look of this Austin he was too.

“The hug is from me, the slap is from the best friend of the woman you dumped at the altar.”

Austin held up his hand as if to ask a question then just shook his head.

“Brodie this is Austin, Austin is a doctor and he knows about the magical implications”  she said this last bit with a waving of her hands.  “Nice seeing you Austin, check out Brodie and then get off the plane.”  With that she turn and left the room her blonde pony tail bouncing as she went.”

Austin did not say anything he just opened his black doctors bag at the foot the bed and he pulled out a stethoscope and a blood pressure cuff.  Five minutes later after a thought medical exam Austin placed his tools back in the bag.  “Medically you are fine.”

“Well that is good to know.”

“But.”  Austin pulled out a leather drawstring pouch from his pocket and pulled out a large gold ring with a crystal set in the middle of it.  “This will tell me what happened to you when you met the dragon.”

Brodie looked at the item suspiciously.  “I know what happened to me, the dragon talked to me.”

“Really what did he say?”

Brodie was about to answer but then a thought struck him, maybe he should not say anything to this stranger.  “Before you do anything else can you tell me where Mrs. Emily is?”

Austin paused. “Mrs. Emily is with Derek and the High Pilgrim at his yurt.”

“Can I talk to her before you do, whatever it is you are going to do with that thing.”  He said pointing to the gold and crystal object.

Austin looked at it and shrugged then placed it back in it’s small bag.

Brodie sat up in the bed and then put his feet on the floor.  “Doctor before you leave can you check out Mrs.Emily,”  he paused when the man looked at him quizzically. “I just want someone to check her out, I mean she is getting up there in age and all and we have been keeping some strange hours and all.”

Austin nodded.

“Now where are my shoes?”  Brodie said looking around the small space.


Brodie walked with him to the ramp, the man looked around and Brodie did too, he did not see anyone else and he heard the man sigh.

“Long history with Ms. Mulan and Holly.”

“A couple of years ago I was dating Mary it got serious but my research took an unexpected turn and I had to leave Nepal suddenly and she did not like it.”

“Ouch.”  Brodie said then after a few seconds he thought to ask next logical question. “Was it worth it?”

“I spent eighteen months with the trolls, I traveled from Nepal to Kilimanjaro, I learned so much about crystal properties from them it was amazing.”

“There are trolls?”

Austin continued to stare out into the darkness.  “Oh yeah at last count five thousand trolls, but it is a steady population due to their limited resources and no desire to come into conflict with the other races due to scarcity of resources.”

“Other races, you mean humans?”

“Among others.”   Austin looked at him confused then quizically. “You didn’t know their were trolls or other races besides humans, how did you get mixed up with the High Pilgrim and all this he said motioning around at the plane and out towards the darkness.”

“It is kind of simple really, I take care of Mrs.Emily and she brought me along to help take care of her and I find out there are trolls, dragons and magic.”

Austin whistled then threw away a comment. “You are new.”

“Someone else just said that to me.”  Brodie said in a whisper.


“He has got some nerve.”

Holly did not say anything she just nodded and checked off the items on the clipboard that was so conviently left by the last crew.

“He shows up and just act like nothing happened.”

“I told you I slapped him.”

“Yes and thank you for that, but I have always envisioned something a lot more drastic then just a slap.”  Mary Mulan said with an evil tone.

“Scorpions down the front of his pants?”  Holly said smiling.

“Too short term.”  Mary said.

“Fill his doctor bag with fire ants so when he takes it home his yurt becomes infested.”

“Nice but you are thinking too small.”

Holly thought for a few minutes then shrugged.

“I am going to call his mother and tell her where he is.”  Mary said.

Holly giggled.  “You are truly evil.”


(1st Part) (2nd Part)  (3rd Part) (4th Part) (5th Part) (6th Part) (7th Part) (8th Part) (9th Part)(Part 10) (Part 11)(Part 12)(Part 13)(Part 14)(Part 15)(Part 16)(Part 17)(Part 18) (Part 19) (Part 20)(Part 21) (Part 22)  (Part 23)

Not crazy about the title, any suggestions will be duly considered.

The problem I have discovered with this type of writing is if I commit to something in the story there is no taking it back I just have to go with is and write my way out of it.  

If you would like to read my last weekly story, A Disinclined Purveyor of Sequential Art here it is. (Written in 2013, the same year my wife left me, so I was a different person back then, and I hope I have learned a lot about writing since then.)

If you want to see one of  my complete books try Disconnect in the Outfitters Universe.  


My Response:   The prophecy stated that in 60 years if the Stones were not properly aligned then the world would fall under the sway of the demon king for 1000 years. 1956 21 year old Emily the chosen one starts the quest. She arranges half the Stones around the planet, but then falls in love and life happens. Now it is 59 years later, Emily’s husband of 58 years passed away and one of the monks has found Emily and reminds her that she is the chosen one and needs to complete her task. Anyone interested?


Categories: Tending the Stones for the Lock

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