Denver Cereal Denver Cereal

Chapter Five Hundred and forty-one : Human (part four)


(part four)

“That is the proper expression, isn’t it?” Abi asked.

Blane nodded.

“I am made of this place,” Abi said. “Gilfand, as well. One male. One female. Forged out of the very dirt and air at the moment of creation. Life.”

Abi nodded.

“More like caretakers,” Abi said.

“Guardians,” Blane said.

“Yes,” Abi said. “We are guardians.”

“Librarians?” Blane asked. “Of the creatures who live here.”

“That too,” Abi laughed.

“What do you want to do?” Blane asked.

“I want to see if this new ‘stuff of life’ can give you, a normal human adult, more of the earth’s power,” Abi said. “Can we train it into you? By all measure, you are an adult. And yet there is this part of you that is from the very beginning of human life. What if we use your developed brain and body to capture the raw human power and … Well, honestly I don’t know.”

“Aren’t you doing that with Katy?” Blane asked.

“Not that you know of,” Abi said.

Blane grinned, and Abi laughed at his grin.

“What kind of powers can I have?” Blane asked. “I mean, I thought I might just move things around, like Jacob does. That seems pretty cool.”

“Oh,” Abi said. “Not really, and certainly it is not a power you’d want to get as an adult. Have you seen Jill’s twins? Their ability to use their skill is just forming. If you became psychokinetic — Jacob said that was the term for it …”

Blane nodded.

“There is a reason it begins in children,” Abi said. “It takes a lot of years of practice to be able to use the power with any skill. It would take the rest of your life to gain real acumen. Psychokinesis is powerful, but surly you must know that pales to the magnificent power of this earth.”

Abi grinned at him. When she smiled, Blane realized that he really liked Abi. He liked how hard she worked and how much she gave to those around her without being a martyr. He gave her a fond look and then scowled.

“What is it?” Abi asked.

“Will it hurt?” Blane asked.

“Why do you ask?” Abi asked.

“Hurting is generally bad,” Blane said. “To modern humans that is.”

“Oh?” Abi asked. “Hmm …”

She was silent so long that Blane realized she was joking. He grinned.

“Pain?” Blane asked.

“I don’t know,” Abi said. “I can say that I doubt it, but that would be just a guess. I am not human so I don’t know human frailties. I will say that it’s something we will do together. It’s not something I can do to you.”

Blane nodded that he understood.

“Let me say that I would never do something that would cause you distress or harm,” Abi said. “Not in the least.”

“Because you don’t do that to humans?” Blane asked.

“Because Hedone would be very angry with me,” Abi said. “It’s probably hard to imagine, but she and I are good friends. It’s hard to find a real friend who has been around as long as we have. Most of them are psychopaths or hermits.”

Blane nodded. They looked at each other for a long moment.

“I am at your command,” Blane said, finally making a decision.

“Good,” Abi said. “I spoke with Hedone. She said she could easily spare you a few hours a day. Are you well enough to start now?”

“Why not?” Blane asked. “What could happen?”

Abi gave him a beautiful smile, and Blane laughed.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Chapter Five Hundred and forty-one : Human (part three)


(part three)

“Sorry, I just really hate being here,” Blane said. “I’m grateful for the miraculous nature of this healing, but I have a newborn, a wife, and a family that could really use me. I feel useless here. Frustrated.”

Abi nodded.

“I would, as well,” Abi said. “I understand.”

“Would you like to play poker?” Blane asked. He pointed to the cards. “Chess?”

“I had a better idea,” Abi said.

“Okay,” Blane said.

“You have had the building blocks of humanity introduced into your system,” Abi said. “This material …”

“Stem cells?” Blane asked.

Realizing that she might have something interesting to say, he sat down in the chair on the other side of the glass.

“Yes, that is what they are named,” Abi said. “They are like tiny pieces of, for lack of a better understanding, me.”

“I’d never thought of it like that,” Blane said. “But that makes sense.”

“I thought that together — you and I — we could harness the potential power of this gift,” Abi said.

“Why?” Blane asked.

“That is a good question,” Abi said. “However, I don’t think there is an answer to ‘why’.”

Blane nodded.

“You see, for most of human life, humans have struggled for basic survival,” Abi said. “Even a few decades ago, food was questionable. Shelter was only for the very rich. Now, most people have food and shelter and …”

Abi shrugged.

“You are well fed,” Abi said. “Your basic needs are taken care of. You’re an adult, a fit adult I might add. You have a family that loves you. You have work you enjoy. Your life is stable in a safe city in the middle of the country.”

“And now I have the building blocks of humanity,” Blane said. “What does that mean?”

“I have no idea,” Abi said.

Blane gave her a long look.

“Okay,” Abi said. “I have some idea.”

“Go on,” Blane said.

“I am made of the components which made the world,” Abi said. “You are as well. It’s just that I am … purer, I guess, so would be the world. More elemental.”

“Loki told Heather that you were dropped here,” Blane said.

“Loki is full of shit,” Abi said.

Blane laughed.

“That is the proper expression, isn’t it?” Abi asked.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Chapter Five Hundred and forty-one : Human (part two)


(part two)

28 days after Blane’s bone marrow transplant

1:23 a.m.

St. Joseph’s Hospital, Denver, Colorado

“Hey,” Abi said as she entered the visiting chamber attached to Blane’s hospital room.

Blane was lying on his hospital bed reading a novel. He looked up when she came in.

“What do you want?” Blane asked.

“Now, now,” Abi said. “Where are your manners?”

“You forget that I know you,” Blane said.

Abi laughed. She sat down in a chair near the glass. He watched her sit and went back to his book. He hoped that if he ignored her, she would go away. After a few minutes, he lowered the book to look.

She was still sitting there.

“Why are you here?” Blane asked.

“Can’t a girl come to visit a friend?” Abi asked.

“Girl?” Blane asked.

Abi laughed. Scowling he went back to his book.

“You know, I could take this darkness from your mental field,” Abi said. “Heal your heart and mind.”

He dropped the book and stared at the ceiling. She waited.

“I don’t want it gone,” Blane said finally. “I don’t ever want to forget what can happen if you are a fool.”

“Never forgive yourself?” Abi asked.

“Never let my guard down again,” Blane said.

“But you love Hedone completely,” Abi said, mildly.

“Heather is different,” Blane said. “Safer. Our love for each other … It will never end. We have children and … I don’t need to remember that she can gut me at will.”

“Why is that?” Abi asked.

“She won’t do it,” Blane said.

Abi was silent for a moment.

“You know that’s a fact,” Blane said.

“Yes,” Abi said. “You are correct. You and your bitterness are safe with Hedone. Her love is not human so does not waver, manipulate, or be used to bludgeon. This Enrique? He is so important that you should carry his darkness for the rest of your short life?”

Sighing, he set down his book and went to the glass.

“How can I be of service to you, first woman?” Blane asked.

“I actually came to be of service to you,” Abi said.

Blane didn’t respond at first. After a moment, he squinted.

“How did you know that I would be awake?” Blane asked.

“Hedone,” Abi said. “She said that you have trouble sleeping through the night. I figured that since you were awake, you may as well do something.”

“What did you have in mind?” Blane asked.

“Well …” Abi said.

She gave him a sly smile.

“Just spit it out,” Blane said.

“Your body has recently been infused with … mmm … I guess the easiest way to say it …”

“Yes, go for easy, not complete,” Blane said. “The boy is a moron.”

As if she was reassessing him, Abi squinted at him.

“I feel you are saying something that I am not understanding,” Abi said.

“Sorry, I just really hate being here,” Blane said. “I’m grateful for the miraculous nature of this healing, but I have a newborn, a wife, and a family that could really use me. I feel useless here. Frustrated.”

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Chapter Five Hundred and forty-one : Human (part one)


(part one)

Sunday night — 12:01 a.m.

Kayenta, Arizona, at the hotel on the Navajo Reservation

“I’ll tell you what,” Blane said, “why don’t you see if you can fall asleep with me here? If you can’t sleep, I’ll go next door.”

“I don’t know,” Nelson said.

“What are you afraid of?” Blane asked.

He gave Nelson a cocky smile in challenge. Nelson shook his head.

“I sleep alone,” Nelson said.

“Let’s see,” Blane said. “Just close your eyes.”

Nelson closed his eyes. In spite of his whole “I sleep alone” thing, he was out in a second. Chuckling to himself, Blane rested against the pillow.

He’d thought all of this would be too weird. And, when stepped back and thought about his life, it all seemed pretty weird. Yet in the actual day-to-day living of this life, everything was pretty good.

He found himself becoming fond of Nelson. Not love. Not yet. But he could feel it growing inside him. It was a terrifying and wonderful thought. He closed his eyes to rest for a moment.

“They are coming.”

The words echoed in his head. Blane sat up. He got out bed, pulled on his clothing, and went into the adjoining room. Heather’s body was still lying on the bed. In all of her finery, Hedone was standing next to the bathroom. Abi was sitting in the chair.

“Have fun?” Abi gave Blane a bright smiled.

Scowling, Blane gave her a curt nod.

“What’s happened?” Blane asked.

“The Templars are on their way,” Hedone said. “They plan to kill everyone in this hotel and possibly in this entire town.”

“Why?” Blane asked.

“Because they like to kill,” Abi said. “It’s been a while since they let loose. The hotel is isolated in the middle of a whole lot of nothing. They can kill everyone and be gone before anyone notices.”

“They believe that they can leave the country without raising any red flags,” Hedone said. “This ‘action’ will get their teams ready for what they see as the inevitable defending of France.”

“Defending of France?” Blane asked.

“From the Muslim hoard,” Abi said.

“What Muslim hoard?” Blane asked.

“Refugees,” Hedone said.

Blane shook his head in disgust.

“Their understanding of the world is a little archaic,” Abi said.

“Obviously,” Blane said. “When will they be here?”

“They will attack at four,” Abi said.

“What’s the news from Olympia?” Blane asked.

“Olympia cannot stand in the way of this event,” Hedone said. “Ares refuses to sanction this action, but he cannot block it from happening

“Just out of curiosity,” Blane said. “Why?”

“There is an old agreement that Olympia will not interfere in the Templar’s business,” Abi said. “I cannot get involved either.”

“You mean, more involved,” Blane said.

“Yes, well, no one said that I couldn’t get you ready for this,” Abi said, with a smile.

Blane looked at her and blinked.

“You are ready, right?” Abi asked.

“I suppose so,” Blane said.

“You need to sleep now,” Hedone said. “We’ll wake you in time.”

Nodding, Blane went into the bathroom. He took a shower. When he came out, Abi was gone.

“When will you come back?” Blane asked.

“When it’s over,” Hedone said. “I won’t leave you powerless in the middle of all of their family mess.”

“Thanks,” Blane said.

Hedone gave him a soft smile.

“Sleep now,” Hedone said.

Nodding, Blane got into the second bed. Hedone touched his forehead. He fell into a deep, restorative sleep.

Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…

Tomorrow -- Poncha Springs, Denver Cereal V17 will be released!

Poncha Springs, Denver Cereal, Volume 17 will be released on October 15.

What happens in Poncha Springs?

Everything is in motion in this volume of the beloved serial fiction, Denver Cereal. The past years of healing have left our friends in Denver Cereal ready to take real risks on new beginnings with characteristic craziness.

The birth of Valerie’s son causes everyone to speak gibberish. She is nearly ready to have her son when Mike learns that he might be the father of children by his sister Candy’s ex-partner Jazmyne. This leads them to address Valerie’s fans directly.

Heather and Tres; Blane and Nelson — things get going when an abuela arrives to kick them into action. Chet finally comes to live with Heather and Blane only to be foiled by the gay conversion center he was trapped in. His and Tink’s mother meets her end when she visits with Heather and Blane. Tink ricochets off all of this trauma to spend time with Sissy in New York City.

Of course, Sissy has been dancing at public ballet “parties.” These parties lead to wider interest in her talents. She is swept away to interview at the Opera de Paris and the Royal Ballet School. Secret forces keep her away from interviewing in Russia which causes Ivan to finally unburden himself.

Back in Denver, Abi starts collecting a team to deal with the Fire of Hell in Leadville and Sandy purchases a journal that will lead Nash and Teddy on an adventure in the near future.

You can preorder this edition now!


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Hot Sulpher Springs, Denver Cereal Volume 18, will be released on December 15, 2018!

For full chapters, visit Stories by Claudia