Denver Cereal Denver Cereal

Chapter Six Hundred and Twenty-one : Hysterics (part two)


(part two)

Thursday morning — 6:01 a.m.

Blane knocked on the loft door. When no one came to the door, he opened the door and went inside.

“Hello?” Blane asked from the door, but the cloth face mask he was wearing kept the sound from moving.

Feeling uncomfortable, he quietly walked across the floor. Jacob and Jill’s door was opened. He peeked inside.

Jill was fast asleep.

Blane cleared his throat and Jill sat up. She grabbed the cloth mask off her bedside table and put it on.

“Sorry,” Blane said.

“What’s happened?” Jill jumped out of bed. She picked up his phone and look at it. “Did you hear about Sam?”

“No, this is something else,” Blane said.

He stepped into the doorway. He held the hand of a six or seven year old Native American girl and an infant in his arms.

“You remember Ooljee?” Blane asked. He gestured with the infant in his arms. “This is her brother. I don’t know his name…”

“Bidzil,” Ooljee said.

“But they call him ‘Ben,’” Blane said.

“They just told you that because you’re white,” Ooljee said.

Blane grinned at her.

“What’s going on?” Jill asked.

“I wondered if you could check them,” Blane said.

Jill got out of bed. She came over to Blane and knelt down to Ooljee.

“Hi, Ooljee,” Jill said. “Would you mind if I touch you?”

Ooljee gave Jill a long look before giving her a slight nod. Jill touched Ooljee’s face, throat, and torso.

“You seem hungry,” Jill said.

Ooljee nodded.

“My Mom is on a trip and my grandparents are sick,” Ooljee said. “We ran out of food.”

“How awful,” Jill said. Her eyes flicked to Blane, who looked as horrified as she felt. “Why don’t we get you something to eat?”

“And my brother too?” Ooljee asked. “He’s sick. Is Katy here? My cousin?”

Jill reached out to Blane and he set the child in her arms. Jill instinctively cooed to the young boy.

“Your cousin?” Blane asked.

“Paddie?” Ooljee said. “He’s about this big…”

She held out her hand above her head.

“Has white hair?” Ooljee asked. “White skin?”

“He’s here, but he’s sick,” Jacob said.

“Katy?” Ooljee asked. “She’s probably not sick because of her mother’s gift.”

“Her what?” Blane asked trying to play it cool.

Ooljee pointed to herself, “I’m on the spirit way. I can see what people are by looking at them. Like you, Uncle Blane, have new skills from your new blood.”

“Okay,” Blane said with a nod. “I believe you.”

Ooljee gave him a beautiful smile. She was a small girl, but her mother, Margaret Peaches, was small in size. The girl’s skin was the color of milk and coffee. Her long hair was perfectly brushed into braids, and she wore clean clothing.

“Where’s your mom’s husband?” Blane asked.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Chapter Six Hundred and Twenty-one : Hysterics (part one)


(part one)

“I leave you alone for one moment and you pick up some half-wit fairy,” Mari said.

“I could never replace you, my love,” Otis said. “I am simply irresistible to the females.”

Mari laughed, and the fairy shook herself head to toe.

“You’re stronger than you look,” Mari said.

“Who are you?” the woman asked, angrily through her clenched teeth.

“Princess Marigold,” Mari said. She gave a slight bow, touching the Princess Blade to her forehead. “Queen Fand’s realm. And you?”

“That’s the Princess Blade,” the woman said, her voice laced with awe. “I’ve only seen it in books.”

“What books?” Mari asked with a sniff.

“It was a long, long time ago,” the woman said. “I was a young girl.”

“Hmm,” Mari said. “Who are you?”

“I am Nixie,” the woman said. “I’m from no realm.”

“You’re one of the lost fairies,” Mari said, under her breath. “Edie.”

Princess Edith appeared wearing her full fairy armor and carrying her heavy blade, the “Head Remover.” She looked around and then gave Mari an irritated look.

“What?” Edie asked.

“A lost fairy,” Mari said.

Edie turned to look at the nurse.

“She says that she’s ‘Nixie,’” Mari said.

“Where were you born?” Edie asked.

“Who are you?” Nixie asked.

“Princess Edith,” Edie said. “I am the head of all of the fairy realms.”

“Big whoop,” Nixie said. “Why should I care…?

“We have joined the three fairy realms,” Edie said. “We’ve returned the fourth fairy queen to her throne.”

“We’ve been searching for fairies like you,” Mari said.

“Like me?” Nixie asked.

“Exactly like you,” Edie said. “It’s a very long story. If you’d like to come with me…”

“No,” Nixie said, irritably. “Look around you, princess.”

Nixie said the last word with a bit of a sneer.

“People are dying,” Nixie said. “I use my gifts to help. What do you do?”

Edie opened her mouth to say: “I just saved the entire world, little fairy,” but decided against it. Nixie turned to see Otis sitting on Sam’s bed.

“What is he doing?” Nixie asked irritably. “If he dies, it’s on me!”

Edie raised her eyebrows at Mari.

“He’s a healer,” Mari said. “He comes from a long line of healers going back to the beginning of time. That man in the bed is our friend.”

“Why not heal everyone?” Nixie asked. “You heal only this man because he’s your friend? That’s morally irresponsible.”

Mari raised her eyebrows and glanced at Edie. The sisters nodded together.

“Otis?” Mari asked.

He looked up at her.

“Come to me,” Mari said.

He walked toward her.

“Come, Nixie,” Edie said. “Take my hand.”

With Otis in front of her, Mari held out a hand to Edie and to Nixie. The nurse took Edie and Mari’s hands. They formed a circle around Otis.

“Now what?” Nixie asked.

Mari nodded at Edi. A pulse went out from the fairies through Otis and through the hospital. Everyone in the entire building was affected by the burst. Edie nodded to Mari and stepped away. She and Nixie disappeared. Mari wrapped her arms around Otis and disappeared.

“What just happened?” the ICU nurse asked.

A doctor jogged into the area. He looked went from patient to patient.

“They are getting better,” the doctor said.

The nurse and the doctor stood back for a moment.

“Let’s hope it continues,” the doctor said and jogged out.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Chapter Six Hundred and Twenty: Can you help? (part five)


(part five)

“Would you mind keeping them overnight?” John asked.

“Of course,” Tink said. “We have plenty of space. Delphie said it would be warm enough to look in the beehives today.”

Delphie nodded.

“Beehives!” Joey said.

“We know all about them,” Máire said.

“We can help!” Joey said.

“Then it’s settled,” Delphie said. “If we finish in time, we can go to your house and check your hives too!”

Joey and Máire nodded in happy agreement.

“I have an apartment near the hospital,” John said. “If you really don’t mind, I’ll stay there. I’m just exhausted. It will be a big help for me. I will come by when I can, and their mom is due back in a week or so.”

All four children nodded.

“Great,” Delphie said.

Ivy came down the stairs and through the kitchen.

“Máire?” Ivy said. “Joey? Are you here for a visit? My aunt’s away working so I’m here.”

The children nodded. Ivy gave them a wide smile. The kids caught her infectious smile and were grinning themselves.

“They have some calls with the military folks,” John said. “I figured you could handle it because you talk to MJ when he’s gone.”

“Easy,” Jacob said. “It sounds like everything is set. I need to get to work. Why don’t I walk you out?”

John kissed every child again and followed Jacob out the door. Jacob grabbed a cloth mask sitting on a table next to the door. He gestured to John and the doctor picked one up. They left the Castle.

“You can’t imagine what a help this is to me,” John said.

“Don’t think about it,” Jacob said. “There are a lot of people depending on you. At the very least, we can help support you.”

John gave a nod and walked to his sedan.

“Get some rest, Drayson,” Jacob said. “You look exhausted.”

John waved and got into his sedan. Jacob watched him drive away. Jacob got into the SUV and called Aden.

“What’s up?” Jacob asked.

“Just a slow morning,” Aden said. “Lots going on.”

“Why don’t you send the kids here?” Jacob asked. “Drayson brought his kids. They can all entertain each other.”

“Great idea,” Aden said. “Can you pick me up?”

“I’m in the car on my way,” Jacob said.

“I’ll get that worked out,” Aden said. “See you soon.”

Aden clicked off the call. Jacob started the SUV and moved out of the lot. As he waited for the metal gate to open, he thought about how lucky he was to have the help that he had. By the time the vehicle’s wheels hit the pavement, he was already lost in thought about what had to be done that day. He pulled up to Nelson’s house, where Blane was waiting for him. Blane got into the SUV.

“No Aden?” Blane asked.

“We’re picking him up,” Jacob said. “How’s Nelson?”

“As good as can be expected,” Blane said with a nod.

“Sounds good,” Jacob said.

Jacob waited until they reached the light before beginning to talk about what they had to get done today.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Chapter Six Hundred and Twenty: Can you help? (part six)


(part six)

Thursday morning — 5:35 a.m.

Princess Marigold, also known as Mari, landed in the middle of the IUC. Her arms were wrapped around her boyfriend, Jill’s grandfather who went by the name “Otis” now. For a moment, she held him while he tried to breath. This type of flight always made him feel nauseous. Mari snapped her fingers and she was wearing scrubs like a nurse and personal protective gear. Otis was wearing the outfit of a doctor.

“Which one is he?” Otis asked, gesturing to a row of people lying on their stomached on ventilators.

“Where have you been?” A woman marched up to Mari. “You’re late!”

“I am?” Mari asked. She glanced at Otis. Using a bit of magic in her words, Mari added, “I thought this was my starting time.”

“Oh probably,” the woman sighed. “We’re just running like chickens with our heads cut off. Sorry I snapped.”

“No problem,” Mari said. “What can I do?”

The nurse rattled off a list of things and then told her that she probably should talk to the nurse in charge Mari raised her eyebrows to Otis, and he gave a slight shrug.

“Doctor?” the nurse asked Otis.

“I am looking for Samuel Lipson?” Otis said.

As an ex-oligarch and Russian mafia don, Otis was used to bluffing his way through tight situations.

“Are you his doctor?” the nurse asked.

“One of many,” Otis said. “I had a little bit of time this morning, so I thought I’d drop by and check on him.”

Mari used a little fairy magic to convince the nurse. Harried, the woman gestured to the bed in the middle.

“He’s right there,” the nurse said. “Come on. Let’s get you to the nurse in charge.”

Mari glanced at Otis. They gave each other a quick look, and Mari followed the nurse. Otis looked down the row of bodies. Shaking his head, he wondered if there was a way to help them all.

“Who are you?” a nurse asked.

She was covered in PPE — a paper coat, a mask, glasses, and a hat. He could only see her eyes. They were large with ridiculously long lashes. She was the same size as Mari but possibly a little smaller. He scowled.

“Who are you?” Otis asked, in an authoritative voice.

“Bloody hell,” the nurse said. The woman opened her hand and there was a ball of bright light. “You tell me who you are or I’ll…”

“I wouldn’t do that.” Mari’s voice was clear and strong.

Mari held her sword against the neck of the woman. Everything around them stopped moving. The woman whipped around. Prepared for battle, the woman raised her hands. But Mari was an experienced fighter. She stopped the woman in her tracks and looked at Otis.

“Where’d you pick up this one?” Mari asked.

“She was just here,” Otis said.

“I leave you alone for one moment and you pick up some half-wit fairy,” Mari said.

“I could never replace you, my love,” Otis said. “I am simply irresistible to the females.”

Denver Cereal continues next week…

Chapter Six Hundred and Twenty: Can you help? (part four)


(part four)

“Katy and Paddie too?” Joey asked.

“They are both here, but Paddie is sick,” Delphie said. “I know that Katy will love seeing you. She’s been very lonely.”

The twins looked at each other and grinned.

“There are lots of people able and willing to help,” Jacob said.

“I don’t know this for certain,” John said, “but it wouldn’t surprise me if my siblings no longer want the children in the house. They are older than I and terrified of getting sick.”

“Dying,” Máire said.

“They are sure they will go to hell,” Joey said.

The twins nodded in near unison.

“Did someone say ‘Hell’?” Fin said as he came out of their apartment.

He gave John a long look and then searched the children.

“Have you met Prince Finegal?” Jacob asked.

“Fin, please,” he said, in uncharacteristic humility. “You are John Drayson, husband of the identical twins, Alex and Max?”

“Just Alex,” John said with a grin. “Max is married to Wyatt Klaussen.”

Fin waved his answer away as if what he’d said didn’t matter.

“How you know Alex?” John asked.

“She met my father earlier this year,” Fin said. “He hasn’t stopped talking about her since.”

“Dare I ask who your father is?” John asked.

“Manannàn,” Fin said. “I’m from the Isle of Man. Your mother is a distant relative of mine. Your brother is married to my sister, Edith.”

John’s eyebrows went up. The two men gave each other a long assessing look. Mike came down the stairs and through the kitchen.

“Máire?” Mike asked. “Jackie was just talking about you!”

Máire smiled at Mike and then looked at her brother. She looked back at Mike.

“Can she come down?” Máire asked, shyly.

“I’ll bring her,” Mike said. “Have you two had breakfast? I have it started upstairs. I came down to see how Jacob was doing.”

“My father’s in the hospital,” Jacob said to no one in particular. “Sam’s holding his own. That’s what the nurse said.”

“I’ll find out and call you,” John said, turning to look at Jacob. “You’re sure? Even if they are here a while?”

“Of what?” Mike asked.

“He wants to know if we can keep the kids while he’s out there trying to save humanity,” Jacob said.

Rather than respond, Mike just laughed. John kissed his children goodbye. They whispered back and forth in a language Jacob didn’t know. When John pulled away, the kids had tears in their eyes. John spoke to Chase and Beau in the same language. The boys clung to him for a long moment.

“If you’re sure…” John said.

Tink came up the stairs from the basement. She waved at everyone as she walked through to the kitchen.

“Tink?” Jacob asked.

Tink stopped and turned.

“John needs some help with his kids,” Jacob said.

“We can help,” Tink said. “Charlie and me, I mean ‘I,’ we can’t go to school and can’t work. We have lots of time.”

Nodding, Tink gave John a charming braces-filled smile.

“Would you mind keeping them overnight?” John asked.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

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