Posted in Tending the Stones for the Lock

Tending the Stones for the Lock, XXXI

The conclusion of Tending the Stones for the Lock.  (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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) (Part 27) (Part 28) (Part 29) (Part 30)

Emily took a deep breath immediately after she triggered the device.  The device was magical in nature and developed centuries ago, she did not know it how it worked she just knew it did.  The device made a cloud of darkness, not smoke, not fog or something to block the light out, the device created darkness.  Emily did not like to use it, she felt her life was about preserving the light, but in this instance she understood the need.  Emily then found the zipper on the bottom of the bag and pulled it and she felt the contents of the bag spill out onto the ground of the compound.  She knew the darkness would only last a few more seconds so she heaved the bag as far as she could towards the Opposition hoping someone would trip over it, then she tipped the walker over and slowly began to shuffle backwards towards where the High Pilgrim was supposed to be.  The wind from the helicopters down wash disappeared a few seconds later and she knew that Meredith and Brodie were safe.  Emily stopped shuffling backwards and grounded herself where she stood and smiled she felt the pure green energy flow up from the ground, then she felt around her into the masonry work of the courtyard feeling the energy of all the people who had built this marvelous place and all the joy and solace it had brought the visitors here for centuries.  This was a good place to make a her stand.


Brodie felt the strap digging into his armpit as though it was twisted or biting into his skin as his feet left the ground  Brodie looked down and immediate regretted it.  Sally had told him the flight would only last a few minutes but it was beginning to be a long few minutes.  He looked at Meredith who he could tell was shouting at him but due to the engine and wind noise of the helicopter.  She also looked very angry.  Meredith continued to yell only inches away from his face and he just motioned with his hands that he could not hear her.  The sound of the helicopter changed and the ground  was starting to get closer.  A few seconds later Brodie looked down and saw they were crossing over the fence and entering the parking lot where the plan called for them to be let off.  The drop to the pavement was gentle and slow and the two of them touched down as if they were stepping off a curb.

Unfortunately the curb was into traffic and a little old Korean lady in a red Kia was driving slowly in the empty parking lot.  She honked at the two of them standing together and just as she let off the horn the connecting cable was detached from the helicopter and the heavy hook landed on the ladies hood creating a very impressive dent.

With the tension of the cable gone the straps surrounding the two of them lessen and the straps fell off them.  The helicopter moved a little way always and a rope dropped down and sliding down the rope was Sally in a green army nomex flight suit. Then the helicopter engine changed again and disappeared out of the valley.

“What is going on, where is my mother?”  Meredith said while arranging her hairs which gotten only slightly mussed it being a short sporty style.

“Your mother is still back in they courtyard but we have to get to the airport.”  Brodie said taking a few steps back and looking for the van they came in.

“I am not going anywhere until someone explains to me what is going on.”   Meredith said putting her hands on her hips.


Up the valley blue lightning flashed in the sky followed by a green strobing glow flared on the mountainsides.

“You mother is a little busy right now and she is the only one who will explain things to you.”  Sally said as she came up and kissed Brodie on the cheek.  “You did great with the lift.”  Then she turned towards Meredith.  “Mrs. Wallace we need to move now.”   Another flash of blue light illuminated the sky centering a short way up the valley.


Emily stood her ground and unleashed the Blue Lightning of Mountains of Peace.  The Opposition leader was barely standing after hitting the wall but Emily was never one for playing nice when having to deal with the Opposition.

The man was wearing something that protected him the full extent of the lightning and he rose to his feet untangling himself from Howard once the lightning stopped he retaliated with a green wave of energy that emanated from his little fingers.  Luckily for Emily the High Pilgrim was putting a protection spell over her.

Emily was very impressed the man might have a concussion or a possibly some broken ribs but he was still able to produce this much energy and with just his pinky fingers.   Of course he had probably stored a lot up in preparation for this fight.

“My name is Tenvena and I want that book.”  He said standing up straight and unleashing a blue beam of hate towards Emily.

Emily held up her hand and blocked the blast and it was deflected into both the ground and skywards. She countered with the strongest thing she knew hoping to end this battle soon and get Meredith back to the U.S.  Blue light emerged from her hands and engulfed the area.   She heard metallic weapons hit the ground first and then and soft thuds as bodies hit the ground.

“You did really good Emily.”  The High Pilgrim said as he caught her before she hit the ground.


Hans pushed the wheelchair as Dante walked ahead of him and ensured that there were no left over opposition members lurking about.  The High Pilgrim struggled to keep up as he had sprained both his ankle avoiding a thrown axe.  Luckily right afterwards Emily had unleashed the last incantation he had seen her fall and caught her in time, but then he also sprained his knee, but his friend was not harmed while passing out from exhaustion.  The made their way down the winding path and then heard yelling behind them.

“We need to move a little quicker.”  Dante said looking back at his struggling comrades.

“Can we move this blade from my leg to yours and then I could move a little quicker .”  Hans said limping along while pushing the wheelchair.

“Younger travelers our emotions are high due to the battle, but remember be kind to one another.”

The two younger men responded in unison. “Of course High Pilgrim.”

Yells and shouts were getting louder and more violent but luckily they turned the corner and found themselves face to face with Sally who was leaning out of the window of the van.  “What took you guys so long?”

“Mom what happened to you?”

“She is fine just a little exhausted.”  The High Pilgrim said as Meredith exited the vehicle and ran to her mother.  Brodie ran to Mrs. Emily as well and immediate felt for a pulse and was relieved to determine it was only about seventy beats per minute.

“We must be going people.”  The High Pilgrim said leaning against the van.

Meredith turned towards the older man. “I am not going anywhere except with my mother to the Camp Casey Medical Clinic.” She said this while getting within a few feet of the High Pilgrim.  The older man looked very tired and casually reached out and a small blue spark leaped towards Meredith and she slumped down into the van.

“Forgive me Mrs. Wallace but we don’t have time to argue.”



24 Hours later


“Landing in San Francisco in twenty minutes.”  Sally’s voice came over the intercom.

“I still don’t see why we did not land in Los Angles it would be so much easier.”  Brodie said as he sat on the floor of the small galley next to Sally and handed her a cold can of Coca Cola.

“Sally can’t land in LA because of a problem with the Sheriff, if he finds her in LA.”

“Which Sheriff?”

“Sheriff Lamposa I think.”

“Lamposa that was two sheriff’s ago.”  Brodie said.

Sally thought about it for a second.  “You mean a Sheriff is not appointed for life?”

“Ah no.”  Brodie said.


“So our trip to Alaska, where you wandered out into the bear area?”  Meredith asked.

“Yeah that was me arranging some stones.”

Meredith nodded.  “That makes a lot of sense now.”  Meredith smiled at her mother.  “So this the book they wanted?”  She flipped thru the book casually.

“Yes that is what they wanted, luckily I was able to have a duplicate bowling ball bag made and fill it with some tricks and that is how we got you away from the Opposition.”

Meredith shook her head.  “I am still having a hard time believing all this.”

“You should talk to Brodie, he was where you are now a few weeks ago.”  Emily said patting her daughters hand.


(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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) (Part 27) (Part 28) (Part 29) (Part 30)


Hope you all enjoyed it.   I will probably rework this story someday into a full fledged book, add some details, revamp somethings and add some details.  I liked these characters and this world, it was fun writing this story and that is rewarding all by itself.  Now to kick into high gear and finish the fourth book in the Outfitters Universe Primary Collision.  

Posted in Tending the Stones for the Lock

Tending the Stones for the Lock, XXX

30th 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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) (Part 27) (Part 28) (Part 29) (Part 30)

“A beautiful morning.”

“The Land of the Morning Calm.”

The two of them stood for a few minutes waiting for the car to come around.  Meredith looked at Nutter he was dressed as always in a very expensive looking suit, today it was charcoal grey, with a very expensive looking white shirt and a black silk tie.  Meredith did not like this man,  and had found anything to like about him since she had met him in Russia.  She had to admit he was a sharp dresser.

“If all goes according to my plan you should be on a plane heading back to California tonight, maybe even late this afternoon.”

“Do your plans always go according to plan?”

“Usually.”  Nutter said.

“Are they usually in direct opposition to anyone else’s plans.”

Nutter turned towards her just as the limousine came into the courtyard. “Always.”  He smiled a reptilian smile when he said that word.  The car door was opened and he motioned for her to enter the car.


“Brodie will you carry my bag today?”

Brodie nodded and took the blue leather bowling ball bag.  He noted that the bag seemed to feel heavier than he remembered.  He was about to ask Mrs. Emily about it when the older lady started to walk briskly towards the elevator.  A few minutes later they were at the lobby and the large passenger van pulled up and they climbed aboard. The High Pilgrim smiled at his dear friend and then tapped on Han’s shoulder and the man began to drive.

Dante spoke. “Sally called she had to get a bigger craft then originally planned, if anything it works out better for us.”

This information was addressed towards everyone but Brodie knew he should ask some sort of question but he was not sure what so he did what everyone else did he simply nodded. The ride was uneventful but Brodie saw they were passing a US military base, and he realized that is why there were so many helicopter flying overhead.  Fifteen minutes later they turned off the main road towards the mountain park and the acid in his stomach made a noise.  Brodie looked back towards Mrs. Emily and the High Pilgrim who were sitting in the seat behind him.  The two of them had their foreheads touching and they were reciting some sort of prayer simultaneously;  or maybe it was a spell, incantation or maybe it was the lines from a Rocky movie.  Brodie smiled to himself, it was probably not a Rocky movie.  Not that Brodie had ever watched a Rocky movie of his own violation but Mrs. Emily was very fond of them and played them a lot a home.

“We are here.”   Hans announced pulling the vehicle into a handicapped parking spot.

Brodie exited the vehicle and again carried the bag for his boss.  Hans came around the vehicle and with a flourish opened a folding walker which Mrs. Emily position herself behind it.  Brodie checked to make sure that the device was locked into place properly and when he was satisfied he nodded up at her.  The High Pilgrim placed his hands into his robes and nodded towards Dante and Hans. The five of them made their way slowly into the park area.  The progress was slow with Mrs. Emily using the walker and Brodie had plenty of time to look out his surroundings, they were in a valley walking up hill into a steep mountain valley on paved paths, there were a few buildings along the walkway and occasionally out of the corner of his eye he would catch movement but it seemed more like shadows or tricks of the light.  Brodie had seen enough on this trip to be suspicious and the acid in his stomach rumbled and not just because of his lack of breakfast this morning.

The others might have seen the man before Brodie but he was the only one who reacted to his presence by motioning towards him with a head nod.

“Yes Brodie it is one of the Opposition.”  Mrs. Emily said pointedly ignoring the man who had come out from between two buildings and was now walking behind them.  Brodie tried to ignore the man but then another joined him from the opposite side of the sidewalk leading up the valley.  This one was dressed almost exactly like the first, military style shirt and pants all black with black leather lace up boots, they kept their distance just staying about ten meters behind the last person in the group.

Brodie caught a glint of metal and focused on the shadowy man who had just stepped from behind a building without thinking he blurted out.  “Why is that guy carrying an ax?”

Hans and Dante sighed at his statement but the group continued to walk with the two pulled from their robes a series of tube and started to screw them together as the group continued at the pace of Mrs. Emily with her walker.  While Brodie had been distracted by the two monks putting together their staffs two more darkly clothed men had added themselves to their tail.  Brodie was so distracted by everything going on around him he missed the fact that Mrs. Emily had stopped and Brodie took about ten steps when he relieved he was alone and halfway across a courtyard he looked back and the four in the group were staring across the space towards an arched doorway.  Two men dressed similarly to the others that had been following them took up positions flanking the doorway and then a tall man entered filling the doorway.  He was dressed in a perfectly tailored grey suit with black silk tie.

“Brodie could you come back here?”  Mrs. Emily said in a normal conversational tone.

Brodie felt his face turning red and backed slowly till he was between Mrs. Emily and the High Pilgrim.  Hans and Dante were on the flanks of the little group with their staffs fully assembled.

The tall man stepped away from the archway and nodded and thru the archway stepped Meredith, followed closely buy a hulking figure who was also dressed in a suit, and while his was black it was offset by a red shirt, a red tie and a red handkerchief in his pocket.

Mrs. Emily said very quietly.  “Told you he would bring Howard.”

“I thought he would leave Howard at home.”  The High Pilgrim replied.

“He thinks this is for the whole bag of marbles of course he brought Howard with him.”  Mrs. Emily countered.   “You owe me five dollars.”

“I will pay for your lunch.”  The High Pilgrim said.

“Oh no I want cold hard cash.”  Mrs. Emily stated.

“You know I can hear you.”  The Tall Man said across the courtyard.

Mrs. Emily turned toward the speaker.  “I am not cutting you in on my winning.”

“Hello Mother.”  Meredith’s voice sounded across the courtyard, the anger coming across as well.

“I am so sorry to drag you into all this my darling but you will be on your way home soon.”

“So you are going to give me the book.”

“Of course Mr.?”   Emily responded and inquired at the same time.

“I am surprised you do not know my name, I know all of yours, Mrs. Emily Bartloski, High Pilgrim Jon Orujov,  Hans Santiago, Dante Smith and last but defiantly not least Brodie Quint.  Brodie Quint a registered home health care worker, if I might make an observation Mr. Quint you are not anywhere near home.

When the tall man said the word ‘home’ Brodie felt a wave of emotion pass over him, the feeling was one of missing home, the kind of feeling you get when you are a long way from home and it is getting dark and cold and you don’t know how you are going to get home.  Brodie felt as though he was about to begin crying like a child when Mrs. Emily reached out and put her hand on Brodie and the feeling dissipated in the warm Korean sunshine.

Mrs. Emily shook her head towards the man.  “Yes very impressive you can research up and come up with our names but do you know why we don’t know your name?”

“I am curious about that, you people seem to care very little studying your enemies.”

Mrs. Emily waved her hand dismissively.  “That is because you are not our enemies you make yourselves enemies of the universe by promoting chaos, discord and hatred.  I was asking your name to be polite not to start a dossier on you.”

“I think you lie.”

Mrs. Emily chuckled. “Not at all.”

“Mother can you give this man whatever it is he wants I want to go home.”  Meredith said impatiently.

Mrs. Emily looked at her daughter. “Patience my dear, we will be on our way soon enough.”  She turned her attention back towards the tall man. “Now what is this nonsense about me lying.”

“The tall man chuckled.  “Your earlier conversation gave you away, you made a bet about weather or not my man Howard would be with me or at my home, and you Mrs. Emily deduced correctly that he would be here.”

Mrs. Emily and the High Pilgrim chuckled then looked at each other and then stifled their laughter a bit more.

“What is so funny, why are you two laughing?”

Mrs. Emily chuckled one last time.  “It is because we know Howard, we have run into him before, in fact we were there when he got his first dragon’s tooth.”  Mrs. Emily nodded towards the man.  “Howard how long did it take for the hearing to come back in your ear?”

The tall man turned towards the short man in black and red. “You know them?”  The short man nodded simply.  “We will have a long discussion when this is over.”

Mrs. Emily spoke up now getting the man’s attention again.  “Never mind we don’t really need to know you name.  Let us get this over with.  Myself and Brodie will meet you in the middle of the courtyard, you get to look into the bag and then you walk away with the bag and we walk away with Meredith.”

“Mother this man is crazy he thinks you can do magic.”  Meredith said.

“Meredith do you trust me.”  Mrs. Emily asked looking to make eye contact with her daughter.

Meredith looked back at her mother and their eyes met and at first she nodded then spoke.  “Yes Mom I trust you.”

“Well then trust me and know that I will explain everything in a little while.”

“Okay mom.”  Then she nodded back at her mother.

The tall man began walking towards the center of the courtyard and Meredith was motioned forward by the man she called Mrs. Red.  And she began to walk.  She noted that her mother was using a walker and her aid Brodie was shuffling along beside her with a blue leather bowling bag in his outside hand.  The three with Meredith reached the center of the courtyard first and they stood there waiting.

Mrs. Emily heard the helicopter but did not look up, this next part was all about surprise and she hoped Brodie remembered that as well.

A few steps more and the two met the three in the center of the courtyard.

The tall man spoke.  “How does it feel to be the last Chosen One?”

“Are you sure I am?”  Mrs. Emily said looking up at the tall man.

“Once I get that book the locks will be destroyed and my Master will be unleashed destroying all who opposed him.”

“Are you sure that is what will happen?”  Mrs. Emily asked.

“As it was prophesied so shall it be.”  The tall man said with surety.

Mrs. Emily motioned for Brodie to give her the bag and he brought it up and balanced it on the front bar of her walker.  She reached for the zipper but rested it Brodie’s hand which was steadying the bag.  Mrs. Emily looked past the tall man, and then past Meredith to Howard who was standing behind her daughter.  “Howard do you know that Brodie here talked to a dragon less than a fortnight ago?”

The shock on Howards face was so extreme it looked like it hurt then Meredith heard the first words out of his mouth.  “Oh No.”

Mrs. Emily smiled in response. “Oh Yes.”  When the words were out of her mouth she guided Brodie’s hand in a very specific pattern and then Howard suddenly levitated off the ground and covered the ground between him and the tall man, crashing into him, then they were both crashed into one of the interior walls of the courtyard.

As soon as Brodie felt Mrs. Emily let go of his hand he jumped to Meredith’s side.  “Sorry don’t mean to be so rude but hold on tight and with that he hugged the woman he barely tightly.  The courtyard was encased in darkness as soon as Mrs. Emily saw the two people embrace.  That  is when Brodie looked up and saw the helicopter overhead, he reached into the sleeve of his jacket and pulled the flare out and light it with one hand.  Three long seconds later something hit him in the head and then went around his body.  Now that the straps were around them he did not need to hold on so tight but adjusted the straps around both of them  Brodie then pulled twice on the straps signaling that there were in place and suddenly the two of them shot into the air.

(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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) (Part 27) (Part 28) (Part 29) (Part 30)


For anyone that saw this post earlier in the day it was posted I apologize it was meant to be filled in with the story but I did not get it completed till 8 hours after posting.   It is a long post, but if you read this then you know there are still a few things to wrap up, so tune in next week for the exciting conclusion Tending the Stones for the Lock.  

Posted in Tending the Stones for the Lock

Tending the Stones for the Lock, Part XXV

25th 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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26)


Brodie got back to the yurt after an hour away.  The door was closed and he wondered if he should knock or just enter.   He stood there for a few seconds when the door opened and Austin just about walked into him.

“Oh you are back?  I was just about to come looking for you.”  Austin said motioning for Brodie to enter into the door.

Brodie’s eyes adjusted to the dim interior and his eyes automatically searched for his employer she had not moved since he left, he saw that she was fast asleep and the book rested peacefully on the slow steady and rising of her chest.  He also noticed that her bare feet were touching the ground.  Brodie laid her computer laptop on the cot near her and moved away slowly.  Brodie joined Austin in the kitchen, he was offered a glass of water by Austin who poured himself another the two leaned against the counters drinking in silence.  The silence was comfortable until Brodie snapped his fingers.

“I got something for you, Holly gave it to me, but I think it originally came from Mary.”  Brodie pulled the folded piece of paper in his pocket and handed it over to the doctor.

Austin took the note and unfolded it, Brodie watched as his face changed from curiosity to dread.  “What’s up Doc?”  Brodie said smiling, he had always wanted to say that and it seemed like the only chance in his life to say it.

“Do you know where you  guys are headed next?”  Austin said looking around the room nervously.

Brodie shrugged.  “I have not had any idea where I am going to be from one hour to the next, let alone where this crazy carnival is going to land next, Timbuktu, Istanbul, maybe Cleveland, Ohio.”  Brodie sighed and raising his hands up dramatically.

“Do you think I can hop a ride to where you are going next?”  Austin asked.

Brodie laughed.  “I don’t know Doc, the leader of this three ring circus is in there with her bare feet touching the earth and the High Pilgrim who is back at the plane playing volleyball with the local children in his monk robes.

“That man does love his volleyball.”   Austin said chuckling.

“What makes you want to leave all this in such a hurry.”  Brodie said motioning around the yurt.

Austin raised up the piece of paper Brodie had handed him, he flipped it around so Brodie could see it, upon first glance he realized it was in the format of an e-mail when Austin spoke.  “Mary sent an e-mail to my mother telling her where I was.”

Brodie looked at him.  “Your mother does not know you are in Mongolia”

“My mother thinks I am in San Francisco.”  Austin said rubbing his chin.

“Why does your mother think you are in San Fransisco?”  Brodie said confused.

Austin focused on him for a few seconds.  “Because I told her that’s were I was living.”  He stated as if that was the most obvious thing in the world.

“But you are not in San Fransisco.”  Brodie said.

“You know that, I know that, and everyone else knows that but my mother does not know that.”  Austin looked around the kitchen area and Brodie took the glasses they had been drinking from and washed them in the sink. He could hear Austin opening drawers and moving things around. Brodie shrugged and looked in on Mrs. Emily.  The lady was opening up her laptop and he could here it starting up she pulled a slip of paper from he book and looked up at Brodie.  “How are things going with you.”

Brodie shrugged and gave a thumbs up.

Mrs. Emily nodded knowingly and looked a the piece of paper.  “Can you make out this letter F or a T?”

Brodie looked at the piece of paper.  “That is a T, Dr. Strange.”

Mrs. Emily nodded.  “That made sense.  Austin is a big comic book fan.”

Brodie shrugged his tastes were very old, Melvile, Austen, Shelly and the like Mark Twain was about a current a writer that he read.

Mrs. Emily concentrated on her laptop for a few minutes and Brodie picked up the book that Mrs. Emily had laid down.  Jules Verne he had thought about diving into the man’s works but he had not done the research yet to know where to start.  Brodie was a very slow and deliberate reader taking notes a he read.

“Austin.”  Mrs. Emily said yelling out and standing up suddenly and folding up her laptop.

Brodie was alarmed, Mrs. Emily never yelled. In the years he had been around her he had never even heard her raise her voice.  Austin rushed in from the closed off part of the yurt that was his sleeping area.

“Yes ma’am.”  Austin said with a look of alarm on his face as well.

“I heard your discussion with Brodie in the kitchen, do you want to go with us?”

“Yes, yes I do, what is wrong?”

“We will be leaving within the hour, if you want to go with us you had better be on the plane because we are heading for Korea.”  While she had been saying this she had motioned for Brodie to bring her her shoes and socks which were placed near the door. She started to slip on the sock and Brodie helped her.

“I really don’t suggest you go anywhere until you have had a least another twelve hours of contact with the Earth.”  Austin said, Brodie could tell by his voice he was only making a statement that doctors typically made when they knew their patients were not going to really listen.

Mrs. Emily looked around the improvised couch area and then back at Brodie.  “Check and make sure we did not forget anything.”  Brodie looked around the area and did not find anything and when he was done he simply nodded to his employer.

“One hour Austin, then we leave with or without you.”  Mrs. Emily said slipping on her heavy thermal jacket with Brodie’s help.

“May I ask what the rush is?”  Austin said as Brodie held the door open for her.

“They have Meredith.”


(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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) 



Posted in Outrageous Lies and Tales, Tending the Stones for the Lock

Tending the Stones for The Lock VII

7th part of the new weekly story.  (First 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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) 



Brodie looked to where Mrs. Emily was pointing and waving.  Three men, at least he was pretty sure they were men were standing.  All three were in robes of deep almost maroon red and dark green.  The only one that moved was the tallest one in the middle, and he simply nodded back at his boss.

“You have friends waiting how delightful.”  Mr. Webb stated.

“Friends of Mrs. Emily I have never met them.”  Brodie said.  After Mrs. Emily discussion about ‘the opposition’ and how Mr. Webb might be one of them Brodie had been cautious around him.  Although they had not seen him till they were leaving the ferry he had ended up in the same line at customs with him.  Although Brodie noted there were only two lines for non-Russians so he had a fifty/fifty chance of being in their line anyways.  “Are you cold?”  Brodie asked motioning towards the mans gloves and tweed coat.

“The unfortunate side effect of life time of travel.” Mr. Webb said stoically.  “Foreign service career officer.” He added when Brodie raised an eyebrow. “Nothing like you think, I was in charge of processing visa’s and such, truly dull and dreary paperwork but it allowed me to see the world. But as I was saying, years living in places like Saudi Arabia then moving to Iceland or other Scandinavian countries threw my bodies ability to feel comfortable in even the slightest chill out of order.”  Mr. Webb said holding out his gloves as evidence.

“Well that is something I am sure they did not cover in your training.”  Brodie observed.

“Quite.”  Webb said. “But now I have great pension and can travel as I want, not as the job dictates.”

They were interrupted when they approached their turn to be interviewed by the Customs official.  Brodie passed thru nervously and joined Mrs. Emily who had already been processed.  She had joined the three men in robes and she quickly introduced the head of the order the very tall man, High Pilgrim Orujov.  The other two she introduced as Hans and Dante.  Hans had the look of a sunburnt Eastern European and Dante was a very pale middle aged man who looked like he spent a lot of time indoors.  Both man quickly relieved Brodie and Mrs. Emily of their luggage and the High Pilgrim carried Mrs. Emily’s blue bowling ball bag himself. After this was done Brodie noticed that Mr. Webb was standing a little bit apart from their group and Emily motioned him over quickly.

“Well this is where we part company I guess, have a nice time in Russia.”  Mr. Webb said with a smile.

Mrs. Emily smiled back. “And you also, thank you so much for your company Mr. Webb, may the road rise up to meet you.”

“And my the wind always be at your back Mrs. Emily.” Webb turned to look at Brodie after shaking Mrs. Emily hand.  “Brodie my boy no more fainting,  don’t skip to many meals.”

“I won’t.”  Brodie said shaking the man’s hands and feeling the leather gloves he was wearing and tried not to think of the possibility that this man was a member of the opposition as Mrs. Emily suspected.

“May the sun always shine upon your face.”  And with those words the stocky British man turned and walked away towing his luggage behind him.

He turned back to Mrs. Emily and the three men and heard her say something in a low tone. “Is he?”

Then the High Pilgrim said in the same low conspiratorial tone.  “Oh yes, one of their best.”


Brodie’s alarm on his phone went off and he reached into his bag.  “Mrs. Emily time for your noon medicine.”

Mrs. Emily looked at him.  “What would I do without you Brodie?”

The recreational vehicle lurched slightly and Brodie took exceptional care handing the pills to his employer and then he unscrewed the water bottle and held it until she had the pills safely in her mouth then she followed with the water bottle.  Once that was done Brodie looked out the window at the passing countryside.  It was very green, much more so than the outskirts of LA but the topography was similar to Finland where they had just come from.  The few towns they passed on the road were a bit more drab then Finland though.  They had been on the road for two days now and they were heading in roughly southwest direction, he knew this from the sun as he had not been given an opportunity to look at a map as the monks did not seem to have one.  He had learned that Dante was Russian when he spoke to people at gas stations and the hotel where they stayed last night.

They had left the sea port in a small blue Volkswagen minivan and driven around the city in what he thought was a random manner.  Mrs. Emily informed him they were trying to lose a tail and after a hour of some strange maneuvers including stopping for ten minutes in traffic and letting cars go around them followed by an abrupt U-turn from a center lane and a crazy ride down a one way street at very slow speed Dante had said something to Hans and they ended up in a warehouse and industrial area of the city that looked very disreputable.  They had pulled into a parking lot and a man in grey workman’s clothes opened a garage door and they entered without slowing.

It was inside the darkened warehouse they had transferred all their belongings and themselves into the large metallic green RV they were now traveling across Russia in.  Well they had transferred his and Mrs. Emily luggage, either the monks had loaded their luggage beforehand or they had none.  Once they were settled in the RV he had to continually monitor Mrs. Emily when she got up to walk around as the suspension was poor and he cane only added to her stability to a limited extent.  Luckily she was very happy sitting across a folding table from the High Pilgrim playing backgammon and they tried to teach mahjong to Brodie when Hans was not driving.  Unfortunately Brodie had trouble concentrating on the game because when he looked at it too long he got car sick so the two of them played more backgammon then anything else.

It was an hour after he had given Mrs. Emily her noon dosage of medicine that the large RV pulled off the main road and onto a side road.  “Almost there.”  The accented voice of Dante came back thru the cabin.

“Show time.”  Mrs. Emily said smiling.

“Indeed, it has been a long time since I have been this close to an alignment.”  High Pilgrim Orujov stated.

“Portugal if I recall.”  Mrs. Emily said as she closed the backgammon board carefully so as to not disturb the magnetic pieces in their places.

“No I think it was France.” The man said correcting her.

“No France was where you were being chased by the oppositions attack dogs thru the cemetery.” Mrs. Emily said.

“Oh yes, you would think I would remember that, I could not sit for a week.”

Brodie heard this.  “The opposition,”  He gulped.  “Uses attack dogs?”

The two looked at him as if he had said something mildly amusing. “Oh no dear that was a one time event, there was a dog training center next to the cemetery we were close to and the opposition took control of them John here volunteered to draw them off with a sack of meat from a butcher shop.”

“Oh that makes me feel much better.”  Brodie stated.

“Tsk tsk.”  Mrs. Emily looking like the grandmother she was. “Sarcasm does not become you Brodie, we try and say exactly how we are feeling, not try and hide behind a macho façade.”

Brodie was duly chastised.  “Yes Mrs. Emily.”

The large vehicle slowed as it pulled off to the side of the road. “Madam is this the place?”

Emily rose slowly and looked out the window for a long time at an apparent empty field.  Inside the RV no one moved or said a word.  Brodie was trying to sit still when he felt an urge to scratch is leg but was told that when Mrs. Emily was viewing a site it would be better if he stayed still and not disturb her.  It was a few more minutes and Brodie was about to slowly reach down and give his thigh a slow scratch when she turned and faced everyone inside the vehicle. “This is the right place, but this is a big job, Brodie you are going to have to help me with this.”


(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) (Part 24) (Part 25) (Part 26) 

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 her 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?