CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED-NINE
“Friends help friends do their most impossible tasks,” Jill said. “We are your friend, your human family. We are here to help you do what is nearly impossible.”
“Where else would we be?” Anjelika asked.
Tears squeezed from Nelson’s eyes.
“I can’t,” Nelson said. “Too weak and the world will end and…”
“You will not fail,” a strong male voice said from the doorway.
“Perses,” Nelson mumbled.
“You know me?” Perses asked.
“I’d recognize you anywhere,” Nelson said. “Terrifying.”
“Shh,” Jill whispered. She put her hands around his head. “Let us help you.”
“Let it in.” Nelson heard Mike’s voice and it made him smile.
“I’m Megan,” a woman said, leaning over his body. “You are very ill.”
The woman reached up and closed his eyelids. He was powerless to open his eyes.
“AIDS,” Nelson said.
“It’s something else,” Perses said.
“Something older,” Bestat’s voice came from the corner of the room.
“Moorish,” Perses said softly.
“Sleep now,” Jill said.
“Are we ready?” Blane’s voice came into the room.
“Please,” Anjelika said.
Blane kissed Nelson’s forehead, and that’s the last thing he remembered.
He sat up with a gasp.
“Where am I?” Nelson asked.
“There’s a good question.” Alex Hargreaves’s voice was suddenly next to him.
“Blane, Jill, her mother and the rest…” Nelson said.
“They were able to help you and then you needed sleep,” Alex said. “Bestat brought you back here. Can you eat?”
“I’m starving,” Nelson said.
Alex held out a cup full of mouth watering broth.
“Drink this,” Alex said.
He swallowed the warm liquid down.
“Where is everyone else?” Nelson asked.
“Resting,” Alex said. “We pushed too fast and hard. Even the Goddesses are exhausted.”
“Not you?” Nelson asked.
“I’m used to it,” Alex said. “But I slept and have been eating. Just staying in one location feels like a luxury.”
“The bouncing around from place to place is a deadly,” Nelson said.
Alex made a soft, empathetic sound. She gave him another cup of broth, which he drank down. Sitting up, he realized that he was naked.
“Clothing?” Nelson asked. “My Templar garb?”
“It was filthy,” Alex said. “My clothes, too. The servants cleaned it.”
“I don’t know how I feel about servants,” Nelson said.
“I understand,” Alex said. “Bestat is taking over our care. Her people are more accustomed to helping humans.”
Alex nodded to the broth.
“It’s delicious,” Nelson said.
“Bestat’s people are not slaves,” Alex said. “They are paid with money, longer life, family good luck, and other things.”
Nelson gave a slow nod.
“Where are we?” Nelson asked.
“A home owned by Aphrodite, of all things,” Alex said. “It’s very quiet and so lovely. The grounds are filled with a bounty of flowers of mysterious origin. My room looks right out over the ocean.”
“We’re in the middle of the ocean somewhere,” Nelson said.
“Yes,” Alex said. “She swears that it is still Spain. I’ve never seen this island marked on any map.”
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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