An adult speculative Christian post-Armageddon fiction
Dilemma of Dreams
Chapter Fifteen: Part One
A Meeting with Leotion
The rain actually broke late in the day. Peralte and I spent time speaking of the stars as he cared for his mount. I remembered wanting stars in my sky, and suddenly they appeared. Peralte spoke of the celestial lights being one difference in a basic reality and a complete reality. I had gained some knowledge of constellations and such during my life as a monk, so could understand what he pointed out. He then said that the stars in his sky were also just present for show, and if I felt led to design a celestial scene that he would not mind me replacing his stars. I looked up into the sky wondering if I cared.
I had to admit that I was doing so much more now than I ever really planned to do through all of eternity. I hadn’t even taken a nap, although there had not been much to do through the day. I slept a lot in my first years of being in Heaven, and even slept most of the day when I was Sheriff Mesapher. The convent had its own schedule for my life, but I still slept as much as I could. I now found myself agreeing with Peralte that I did not want to waste a moment of eternity.
I said to him, “I still get sleepy however.”
“No reason that you shouldn’t. This is the life where we were told that we could rest. I just got mad at God one time that I was getting sleepy in His presence. I told Him that he had gotten things backwards. When we needed sleep, we never got it, and now that we did not need sleep, we could get as much as we desired. He gave me the blessing of staying awake. I believe that He thought I would come back complaining, but I haven’t.”
I had to laugh, although I explained to Peralte why I thought his words were humorous. “Getting mad at God. Those words would be considered damning back in the monastery.”
“Yeah, so I guess you can name one more reason why I should not be here. God is a nice guy however. I enjoy talking with Him.”
“But I should be here, Peralte. I got up each morning and devoted the day to God. I held to the tenets of my beliefs. My life was completely and totally committed to God. I still find you a lot more prepared for this life than me.”
“Vetacha, I talk and talk and talk to God, and yet your words touch me. You might not yet know as much, but you have something that I do not. Plus, take this from someone who talks to God, He likes you. I am not saying that He does not like me, but I know for a fact that He watches over you. Think about your time in that convent. You never broke a nail, yet there you were going through the rites for Tersepsus. I believe He would have reprimanded me heavily for that.”
I told God thanks. No verbal answer came in response, but that did not bother me. I kept my focus on Peralte.
I saw him continue to care for his horse, so asked him why he did not have one of his ladies do it. He spoke of Pheloshirra who did manage the animals about his home. He however mentioned that he did enjoy working with animals, so did not mind taking care of his own horse.
Wondering exactly what his response would be, I said, “You seem to like taking care of ladies.”
“That I do. That is why I got doomed souls. When I am home, I will spend time going over their bodies like I am doing now with this horse. I believe the female body to be a wonderful creation. My doomed ladies cannot complain about the way I treat them, but I treat them well. A normal lady would however get bored with some of my desires, which is just to admire them.”
I let the conversation end there. There was a bathtub that constantly had fresh warm water in it. While it did a good job of getting me clean, it was not the experience that I desired. Still, it met the need, and I went to bed hoping that either Peralte or me would have the proper words to say to Leotion.
We did get started traveling again the next morning. Again I had Saroniel stay with the group. I considered it important to hear what the others would say as we moved. Comments about the grass, the water, and the animals that were made during our travels I felt could be important when we finally met Leotion.
My elders did make observations, but they did not discuss anything they saw in detail. I actually found myself wishing that they would. I noticed a number of things similar to my own reality. Considering that I surely was not the only one to simply put a little substance to their dreams, and knowing that I was not the only one to have a reality collapse, I felt that some comparison could be made. Forming my own agenda for discussion tonight, I waited for the talking to commence, but other than short comments the ride was long and silent.
The running antelope alerted us to something, and we quickly spotted the hunting party. They were not having their mounts move with any speed, but were simply doing enough to keep the animals nervous. They however stopped upon seeing us. I did not know any of the local customs, but I knew that I rode a horse that loved to run and was probably as bored as I was. When I asked it if it could outrun the antelope, Sanoriel nodded, so I told it to take off.
After a day of doing nothing, then a number of hours of barely moving at a trot, it felt good to feel the power of my mount racing at a grand speed. Sanoriel did indeed run faster than the antelope, so soon I saw us advancing on the fleeing animals. I actually wanted to use a knife, but did not have one. I thus drew one of my pistols and fired. A horn of an animal broke away as I wanted. It was not a tough shot, as Sanoriel put me very close. I felt proud of myself as I had my mount move back so I could pick up the broken horn, then I gave Sanoriel the command to race back.
The natives had not moved, but simply watched my group. They continued to hold their position as I rode up to them. Again, I did not know their ways, but I felt that my actions would give us a proper reputation. The one I chose as the leader watched me as I approached, and accepted the piece of horn that I gave him.
I said, “We have come to speak to Leotion. If we meant trouble, we could cause it. We however only want to speak to him.”
The answer that I received in response actually caused me to feel bad. “He will not want to speak to you. He speaks to no one, except his family.”
Dimerkess spoke from a distance. “Is he further along the path that we travel?”
“Yes, two days, and a distance from the river.”
“We will be making camp among your land, but mean no harm. As the girl said, if we meant trouble, we could cause it. We however are only here as friends of Leotion.”
The men assured us of their directions. As things were repeated, one of their number took off away from us in what I assumed was to warn the others of our presence. Considering that to be a good thing, I rode back to my elders. They did not say anything, except to command their mounts to follow the directions given.
We actually did not come close enough to any settlement to actually disturb anyone. That would at least be my opinion. Children however were corralled into one of their hemispherical leather hovels. Men and a number of the ladies took up weapons. I saw horses, and I noticed a few hop on their backs without saddles. No one came toward us, although they acted as if scared that we would.
I asked Saroniel if it thought I could ride him bareback. My horse shook its head. I had to agree that it was too tall for me to climb into the saddle. Considering the speeds that I had the animal move, and the maneuvers that I would have it perform, the saddle was probably the best way to ride. I however did tell Saroniel that I wanted to become very comfortable around it and on its back, so might ride bareback at times. I smiled when my horse nodded.
Dimerkess stopped when we had gained a spot where one settlement was far behind us with another barely in sight ahead of us. “We might as well camp here. Hopefully over the night Leotion will get word of us being here.”
Peralte said, “Sure, maybe he will come on out and arrest us.”
Assadra suggested, “Let us go on, Dimerkess. I know that we have not had lunch, but let us pass up that settlement ahead. I want to get an idea of whether the settlements increase or thin out.”
Dimerkess replied, “Why?”
“Because I don’t think that we are near Leotion’s people.”
“These are all his people.”
I found myself agreeing with Dimerkess, so was glad that Assadra worked to clarify her position. “No, they aren’t. They know him, but I don’t believe these are his family.”
"He has married, and has lived here for a good amount of time. They should not just know where he lives, but be on more familiar terms with him. You heard the man that Vetacha spoke to. He said that Leotion only spoke to members of his family.”
Peralte looked to me as he asked his question. “You think that we should speak to those in the next settlement?”
I replied, “I don’t think that I can make another show. We should however be able to ask. We haven’t attacked anyone.”
The men nodded, and signaled the horses to continue on. The next set of settlements acted as those before. I however began to sense something. I could not put it into words however. It was thus Dimerkess that signaled us to halt, then he rode up just a short distance to speak.
“We come here seeking Leotion.”
“He lives on down and away from the river.”
Dimerkess pointed to the sun, then asked, “Can we reach him by dark?”
“No. Moon be there by time you reach him.”
Coming back to our group, the men conferred to agree that we would stop upon reaching the next relatively open area. Assadra agreed, saying that bothering his family late at night or very early in the morning would be wrong. I felt something odd and familiar, but still could not place the sensations. I thus agreed with my elders.
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.