“I presume I would be safe in assuming that you are incredibly wealthy and life has been good to you?”
Previous PALNet Post 093
Robert laughed, genial again. Grabbing the knee of Cherine he answered, “You could say that.”
“There are no others in your circle?”
“What is this circle you talk of?”
“Oh, well there is Pamela. She will be on her way home this evening, you’ll meet her later. A sweet girl, gorgeous ass, but a little,” he put his finger to his head and revolved it, “you know, not all there. Spends her time using her gifts curing beggars and prostitutes.”
Robbie was watching Cherine closely trying to gauge her reactions and Robert noticed.
“Hey! You are welcome to visit. I’ll even feed and put you up - like looking after myself eh? But there are limits, you keep your eyes off Cherine, this one is mine only. Tell you what - if you really are horny you can have Pamela for a night. Shit, even if you knock her up the brat would still be mine.” He burst into guffaws and missed the tightening around Robbie’s eyes, that gaunt tight look he gets when he is at his most dangerous.
“My weakness and strength is my love for children. What is your weakness Robert?”
“Children? In what way?”
“I will not stand seeing a child hurt, feeling pain in their hearts.”
“See Cherine, I sussed him out right from the start. Him and Pamela would suit each other. Hey Rob, if I come to your world, I hope you will be just as generous. Maybe let me have a go at this Wendy of yours, if she is so special.”
We felt thin white lines appear around his nose and then he forced himself to relax. Cherine was covertly studying him and did not miss it.
“What? My visit or you loaning me Wendy for a bang or two?”
“Not very friendly of you is that? After all we are closer than brothers.”
“And further apart than our worlds are.”
“What the fuck does that mean? What does he mean Cher? I thought you said he was okay?”
Cherine leant forward, not answering him, she asked Robbie, “Please don’t spoil it for me.”
“Fuck, what are you begging him for?”
“Cherine, what about the void; the Sparklers and Anadir?”
“The void? The place of death?” She shuddered. “I went there once, trying to bring my father back. I never want to go there again.”
Suddenly Robert dropped all his affectations. “What are you talking about. What are the Sparklers and Anadir? There is a lot you are not telling us.”
“The things I have to say are not for talking about, they are for finding when you are ready.”
“You little pipsqueak, who the shit do you think you are to be acting superior!”
“I do not act Robert. My wives tell me I am a terrible actor.”
“Wives? How many?”
# He had missed the implied insult and Wendy giggling softly muttered, “Fuck him!”
“Eighteen, with three I hope to marry when I return home.”
“Jesus!” He turned to Cherine. “Can you believe this guy! I offer him Pamela when I’ve only got two and he gets uptight when I suggest he offer me one of his eighteen! It’s not even as if I asked for his Cherine!!” Angry, he turned back to Robbie. “I let you into my home, feed you and try to welcome you as a brother. All you do is ask me questions, interrogating me like some fucking cop. What are you trying to do, are you trying to prove Cherine wrong?”
“No Cherine is ever wrong and you know that. They can’t be.”
“What has got your goat then?”
“You.” We sort of cringed at his answer and swelled with pride at the same time.
Robert sent out a mental effort to invade the mind of Robbie. Without any show of strain he turned it aside. Robert was shocked, he obviously has never been thwarted before.
Robbie stood up, his face now showing his cold fury. For the first time Robert saw the man instead of just seeing a younger version of himself and realised his error.
“You have committed one of the major sins a Cherinian can commit. That was just as evil as rape.”
“But…our minds as one…”
“Thank god they are not. You are everything I feared I might become.”
Robert stood up, face pale with anger. “You are in my world, if you do not like what you see, then leave.”
“When it is time I will. Till then Mr Robert Teller, I am going to teach you a few lessons.” He turned to Cherine. “Which guest room am I sleeping in?”
“Who the fuck invited you to sleep here?”
Robbie only stared him down and with Cherine leading the way they climbed the staircase. She opened her handbag and pulled out a thick roll of notes. “Please take this and go to a hotel.” He took the money and put it in his pocket.
“I’m sleeping here. I cannot be his conscience from a hotel.”
“You’ll wreck everything!” She was weeping.
He only stared at her in a cold way that he has never used with our Cherine. “I hope so.”
The idiot had walked out of an argument just because he wanted to shower! When he stepped out, drying himself, he stood in front of a mirror (only letting us see the top half of him). He winked and spoke out aloud. “Hi loves, if you are watching, miss you and having fun.”
# “Jesus, he is crazy!” Eric said which got us all laughing. My fellow lovers of our Robbie were whooping and playing the fools as he dressed, grinning to himself as if he could see us.
Dressed he lay on the bed and shot off to the void. He took only one quick look and returned. No Sparklers, no Anadir and no Kaleidoscope World. He yawned, stretched and got up. His step, light and carefree, he descended to Robert.
“Have you ever used your gifts to help others?” Robert refused to acknowledge his presence, not even making an effort to kick him out.
“You talk about Cherine as if she is something special. I do not see anything special about her.” That made him turn in anger. “All Cherines have the gift of empathy, emoting love and understanding, able to feel the pain of others. I sense nothing of the sort in her. Did you kill that in her, or did you find her like this?”
Robert had gone pale, his face pinched as he stepped towards Robbie, ready to strike out in his fury. First he lashed out with his mind - Candy could have done better! Robbie turned his back on him and sat down, crossing his legs, his one leg swinging for a moment. He grinned at Robert.
“It seems I will have to undo the damage you caused, I look forward to that. Do you think Pamela will want to help me?”
Cherine pleaded, “Please leave us alone.”
“Do you know how long you will live?”
“What kind of stupid question is that?”
“You have healers. If you use them to monitor you, part of their keeping you healthy is rejuvenation of your body. As an average we reckon we grow older one year for every ten. You should live up to seven hundred years. Consider that information as a gift - and an explanation.
I have thought about the two of you and I think I am beginning to understand. Cherine, Robert says he met you two years ago. You first saw him when you were about eight? You stood in the garden?”
“How did you know?”
“That is how I met my Cherine. I think our worlds split there. I was hurting and angry with the world because of Dommi. All I wanted was to be left alone. In my world I saw that it was a child outside and my heart softened, I came out and talked to her. Your Robert did not, I presume. Your efforts as a child to meet him were rejected. You spent over ten years waiting, growing bitter and hard like your mother.
As for you Robert, because you did not learn to love that child, you never learnt to search your own heart, see that Dommi was not to blame. She had only loved you as a friend, needed you as a friend. We forced ourselves on her, made her take us as her lover. The pity is that if you had also met her and told her so, acknowledged your part of the blame, she would have ultimately loved you as deeply as you loved her.
You have made a number of gestures showing you wish to attack me, but you stopped. That is because you sense that I am far stronger than you. The only reason I am, is because I did not abuse the gifts of Cherine. You have abused her gifts and her heart. You are a shallow and callous bastard who does not deserve her love.
I am stuck here without my Cherine. I cannot live without her so I give you fair warning, I am going to take your Cherine for myself.”
Robert went wild; first he used fists, but Robbie would not allow his feet to move and stayed out of range of his fists. Then he tried using his gifts again and Robbie casually fended him off without bothering to counter attack. It became obvious that Robbie was toying with him and this only increased the frustration and fury in Robert. Cherine tried to help Robert, but Robbie only turned a contemptuous eye to her.
“You are both pathetic.” To further demonstrate his contempt for them he returned to his seat and fought them from there while he casually nibbled at some nuts. He saw they have one of his favourite chocolates at another side table, bell-shaped and filled with cherries in liqueur (their stalks sticking out of the chocolate). As if their efforts were nothing, he collected the silver dish of chocolates and returned to stuff them into his mouth with obvious relish.
“Oh sit down and stop making fools of yourselves. You want to fight me you better let me show you how, I’ll open a few doors in your minds.”
From his seat he jumped to a seat behind them. They swirled and stared at him.
“You don’t even know how to jump!” He shook his head. He stood up and grabbing the hand of Cherine he jumped to a beach in Cyprus. He made her walk with him to our taverna, agreed with the owners that he could pay in drachmae and ordered fruit and wine.
“You heard their accent so you must have realised that you are in Cyprus. If you want we can jump to London from here.”
Next PALNet Post 095
I hope you enjoy reading this story of fantasy, adventure and love - and should some of it be true for our reality, I hope you will love our Cherine.
Αλέξανδρος Ζήνον Ευσταθίου(Alexander Zenon Eustace)
2nd November, 2019
* posted : 2nd November, 2019
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