An adult speculative Christian post-Armageddon fiction
Dilemma of Dreams
Chapter Thirteen: Part One
Search for Imminent Doom
I became excited again when we passed into Leotion’s reality. Realizing that I was among a number of riders dressed in western outfits and riding proper horses out on the open grassland filled me with a wonderful feeling. I rode along looking not at the land around except as the backdrop for the wonderful view of what I felt to be a real Wild West situation.
We stopped as the hooves of our horses began to slosh in a layer of water over the ground but not high enough to show through the growth of thick grass. None of us dismounted, but I turned my focus with the men to the river still a number of yards in the distance. I saw a strong flow of clear water, which looked like it would be cold and good to drink. Peralte however spoke of the current not being healthy for the land.
“Where is this river supposedly coming from?”
Dimerkess said, “Somewhere north. I believe that it should be coming from Siberia.”
“Has Leotion issued a complaint about the water?”
Assadra said, “Same as Mesapher, Leotion is going around quite content.”
I heard my old name, so sought to say something to put my actions into context, but Peralte spoke in my behalf first. “She, he since we are talking of the distant past, liked the water. The water for the town was part of a mountain stream, so it would be relatively clear. These are plains however. The water should have accumulated some sediment, especially a flow this fast.”
I admitted, “I usually caught Peralte as I went out to my river.”
Dimerkess said, “Well, we can ask Leotion about it when we see him. Peralte, where did you tell your ladies to set up camp?”
“I know nothing about this place. I am simply going to call them when we decide to stop for the day.”
“My thoughts as well. I would vote to go ahead and make camp. Let us spend time getting adjusted to the land. There is enough in this vicinity for us to start forming ideas, and just getting some baselines to judge things by.”
Jeraketh asked Dimerkess if he expected someone to part the water. Even I knew to laugh at that line. We then moved back a ways until the ground was again dry beneath us, then Peralte called his ladies to set up camp for us.
Pezraneeta brought to me two outfits that I had to thank her for. One was white with red trim with the other yellow with white trim. She also had red and white ribbons that I could tie to my hat in order to fully coordinate my wardrobe. I told her that I felt that I had enough clothes for the moment, but she produced a coat of white leather with trim of red fox fur. Feeling that I could indeed survive any conditions, I thanked Pezraneeta.
I met Remaliyne. She was a redhead with what I thought to be rather exotic hair. It looked curly, but fell straight, although had a wavy pattern to it. She worked with Essabyish, Jeraketh and Nebrozenta to put up some tents. One was rather large, although two more were also erected that were larger than pup tents. As I spoke to Remaliyne, Dimerkess came over to interject a question.
“What are the intended sleeping arrangements?”
Essabyish turned from working with a tent to reply, “There are only five of you, so this should be sufficient. Men in one and ladies in the other, or however you want to split up. Peralte will not sleep, so I will put things to make him comfortable in the main tent.”
“Okay, so what is for supper?”
“Remaliyne will stay with you. It is stir-fry.”
Assadra must have heard, as she went to Peralte to ask, “You are having one of your ladies stay with us?”
“Yes. Not only because I wanted stir-fry, but I would bet that we have a storm tonight. Don’t think that I called her to replace you, darling. I would spend the night holding Vetacha in my arms first. All of my doomed ladies can please me immensely, but I do know their place in the scheme of things.”
Seeing that Peralte noticed me listening, I actually expected a different question than the one he directed to me. “Do you remember the storms?”
I thought back, then blurted out, “Yes. I never thought them odd.”
“Surely you did not enjoy the inclement weather.”
“No, but… but. No, I did not like the storms at all.”
“So, why didn’t you complain about them?”
That question struck me hard. I first wanted to scream at Peralte that I was happy. Even in the midst of the storm, I was Sheriff Mesapher in my Wild West town. The rain might have stopped me from taking my walks, but it did not spoil my belief in my reality. I however looked at the sky, saw the clouds beginning to build, and spoke what I felt was a softer truth.
“I thought that they were natural.”
“It was your reality. You put it together. If it was not according to your design, you should have sought to have it corrected.”
Again I wanted to forcefully get the man to understand the complete lack of concern or knowledge that I had about the storms. I had lived my life in the real world. Rain, snow, whatever the weather, I had work to do. The weather never had much of an effect on my life, except to give me something else to complain about other than my sore muscles, my tired eyes, and my desire for some luxury. Not really feeling that my words would adequately answer the question, I strode up to Peralte, hugged him, then softly said what I felt he needed to hear.
“We are here to help Leotion. He might have called for the rain to help him with the crops.”
I could see in his features that he did not like my words. I honestly did not expect him to agree with them. My point was that even if we did identify any problems that would not necessarily resolve the reason for our being here. If Peralte had fixed the problem with my town, I would not be here now. I would not be wearing this outfit with real guns. I would not have a horse that could chase the sun setting in the west. It really would not have helped me to have saved my town. That was what I wanted Peralte to realize. His stern expression softened, but I could tell that he still did not like my words.
“Come with me.”
One part of me wanted to explain to the man that whatever he showed me would not help, but another part of me simply wanted to spend time with him. I did like Peralte. I thus curtsied, then held out my hand.
I just finished saying that his words would not help, but I was wrong. The reason his long lecture applied however had nothing to do with Leotion. His words applied to me, and they did help.
He spoke of his mountains, his forest, and my Wild West. He spoke of crops, the flow of rivers, and the movement of birds. While we were both looking at the grass, river, and weather of this world, Peralte spoke of his, our, world. I carefully listened to everything that he said.
We finally headed back to the main tent as the rain was beginning to fall. In turning after a flash of lightning, I saw Assadra running up to us from the direction of the river. Strangely, she was naked. She strode up to Peralte and kissed him passionately on the lips. After breaking contact, she spoke to me loud enough to be heard over the rain.
“He did good. He earned a reward. I know that you are unable to pay him at the moment, so please allow me.”
I asked, “You were listening?”
“As intently as you were.”
“Be kind to him. He has been kind to me.”
“Vetacha, it’s no fun that way.”
I saw them go to a tent really interested in what they would be doing. I knew the basics, but nothing more. Feeling that I would wind up being much more knowledgeable about life in general as a lady, even after having a complete life as a man, I entered the large tent.
After shaking off as much water from my clothes as possible, I heard Remaliyne asking what I wanted. I really did not know what stir-fry was, so moved up to see what she had to cook. As she displayed the potential ingredients, I decided to ask the lady a question of my own.
“Why were you doomed?”
“Nothing special. I just did not accept Christ. I clearly heard the message. That fact gets stressed a lot in Hell. Anyway, I went my entire life not taking advantage of opportunities.”
Strangely enough, there was a clock in the room. I had not seen it the night before. While wondering if it belonged to Dimerkess or Jeraketh, I noticed that the time was only five:forty-five. I thus decided to talk to Remaliyne for a spell.
“Jesus does not like you with Peralte.”
“No, but we are still there. My soul is immortal. It will not go away. I am doing much more good in the service of Peralte than being tortured in Hell.”
I assumed that I heard the other side of the argument, but not wanting to get into divine politics I decided to change the subject. “He talks good about all of his ladies. I have been wanting to meet all of you. I plan on staying with him.”
“You won’t be the first, but he travels a lot. I tend to believe that I have his company more on the road than I do relaxing with him about his property.”
“There are eight of you, so much how much time do you have with him while he is home?”
“I cook his meals. I have him at least three times a day.”
I did not know anything about cooking. When I had my town, I would get those at the saloon to whip me up some grub. If I would have advanced to the age of ten, I would have been given lessons in cooking, but I never had a tenth birthday in the convent. Seeing the knives, and the amount of possible ingredients I found myself glad that Remaliyne would be about the house. In fixing my serving, she made me feel that there was a lot to learn if I wanted to cook. Not having that as a desire at all, I thanked the lady before leaving to sit down and eat.
Fantasy puts more requirements on the writer than any other fiction, because the world must be made as real before anything else can be real.
Adult Christian fiction quite different than all the usual lame stuff in that market. "Dilemma of Dreams" now in hard back.