CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED and TWENTY
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…
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