CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED and THIRTY-ONE
Nelson took a breath and his hand went to his chest.
“Easy,” Blane said. “We’re just talking about things that happened a long time ago.”
Nelson took a few more deep breaths to calm himself.
“No one will hear you,” Blane said. “You’re just talking to me.”
“How can you be sure?” Nelson said. “Gods, Goddesses, and …”
“Because I am charmed,” Blane said. “I am the consort of a Goddess. No being can fuck with me. It comes with the territory. I wouldn’t be surprised if you carry the same charm.”
“Really?” Nelson asked.
“How many apples did you eat?” Blane asked.
“Three,” Nelson said.
“Maybe,” Blane said. “But back to your story — you were just here with me talking about your father’s childhood. I love your father. So what’s the problem?”
Nelson nodded. He took a breath and started again.
“When he was four or five, the children of his age were taken into a kind of after school program,” Nelson said. “Children from other families left in the order, that is.”
“Like J-school for Jewish kids,” Blane said.
“Yeah, that’s it,” Nelson said. “He said that there were five or six of them. Four girls and two boys. So six, I guess. My mother was one of the girls. His best friend was the other boy.”
“His gay best friend?” Blane asked.
“Right,” Nelson said. “That’s a part of this story, my story.”
“Do you know who the other people in the class were?” Blane asked.
“One is high up in the French government,” Nelson said. “I don’t know what. When I was a child, my father used to watch French television. He would point to her and say that she was a friend in the order. She is his age. One is married to the head of a national party. She’s younger than my father.”
“So the Templars are everywhere,” Blane said.
“Basically,” Nelson said. “It’s a very small order. There aren’t that many families left and over time people die off.”
Blane didn’t say anything, and Nelson fell silent.
“We were talking about your father,” Blane said.
“Yes,” Nelson said. “My father and mother met when they were young children. He used to say, ‘Le moment où nos yeux se sont recontrés mon âme fut complète.’ That’s something like, ‘My soul was complete the moment we saw each other’ or something like that. The connection between them was immediate. Even their Templar teachers noticed it right away.”
“It sounds like a good thing,” Blane said.
“No,” Nelson said. “Someone from my mother’s family could not be in a relationship with a blacksmith. No. No way. It was not something that could happen.”
“Why?” Blane asked.
“My mother …” Nelson sighed. “Her birth, the birth of her parents and back to the 1100s — it was all planned.”
“Yuck,” Blane said.
“You are an American,” Nelson said with a smile.
“We’ve been all through that,” Blane said. “So who is your mother? Who was her family?”
“That’s the question, isn’t it?” Nelson asked.
They drove in silence. Blane glanced at the clock and six minutes had passed. He scowled.
“You are sincerely the most annoying man,” Blane said.
“How so?” Nelson said.
“Who was your mother?” Blane asked.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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