A science fiction novel about the end of the world, love, money, leadership, wisdom, and everything else.
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The Righteous Brothers, Unchained Melody
The Book of Carrot
Book One: Principal Virtues
Chapter One: Love is a battlefield
Episode Three: God speed your love
“Who am I?” John repeated as he looked into Cristina’s blue eyes.
I am… your hero.”
”What does that mean?”
”It means I am yours and you are mine.
I will celebrate and cherish your laughter and know the salt of your tears.
I will carry you in my arms through the long, dark night – keep you safe.
I will kill for you and die for you.
You will take my breathe away. And I will stand by you, forever.
“Forever?” she asked.
“And always,” he replied.
And they kissed.
“Hey bro – I never knew you were all up into that Shakespeare thing. Was that Romeo and Juliet?
Well, I never read it, myself. But I kinda remember the movie. You know – the one with Leonardo Dicaprio and Claire Danes. Because you sounded like Romeo just now.
You were laying down some poetry in the moonlight.”
George had a shit-eating grin on his face.
“Two for Two- bro. Talk about Tournament prizes! Your luck doesn’t stop. Like I said, you are epic! E-P-I-C!”
“Isn’t Anca waiting for you?” Cristina impatiently asked George.
“You think so?
Maybe but I got to go with John to the hospital. You know, someone has to watch his back…”
“I got this” Cristina said.
“Ok – I’ll let you two get back to your poetry and I’ll take Hachi with me.
You’re welcome – good byeee.”
“Those were wonderful words. Mostly…”
More than this, I know that John meant every word of it,” said a woman standing near them.
Her voice was sweet, gentle and kind. It was love; it was good and true; it reminded John and Cristina of mango .
They hadn’t noticed her standing there, near them, but off the path and among the trees. She spoke in English. Her accent was American, but it seemed unusual to Cristina.
The woman slowly approached John and Cristina.
“Don’t be afraid, children” said the elderly black woman.
“My friends call me Mother Washington and I like it very much if you would too.”
“You take John home, Cristina.”
“But he needs a doctor,” Cristina replied to this unusual but gentle stranger.
“Oh my, I hope that is you, Cristina, and that you’re not someone else,” said Mother Washington as she laughed and covered her mouth with both hands.
“I’m very sorry if I have your name wrong. But you have to know that I am old. I will confuse things from time to time.”
“Yes, I’m Cristina.” Cristina confirmed.
“How do you know my name? Do you know John?””
“I’m so happy to finally meet you two,” Mother Washington said as she clapped her hands and giggled.
“It feels like I’ve been waiting all my life for this moment. Mostly.”
Mother Washington smiled as large as a blue sky stretches across a Caribbean sea. She took Cristina’s hands into her own, raised them gently to her lips and kissed them.
“Bless you, my child.
The world is upside down and everything is going to shake out and burn up – so you stand steady by your man. Steady, brave and true – no matter what happens.
Because John is the one for you. And you are the one for John.
Ain’t nobody else in the whole world for you. Or John. Nobody. No other person, child.
Do you understand?”
Cristina nodded yes and Mother Washington smiled again. As large and beautiful as an open, blue sky.
Mother Washington turned to John who had been strangely silent up to this point. He recognized her voice from somewhere. From her first words.
But where? When? He searched his mind and soul for that when and where – he came up with nothing.
“Don’t nobody know your troubles but God, John.”
Tears streamed down Mother Washington’s face. She wiped her wet cheeks with both hands and then gently laid her cool, shaking, brown hands on his face.
“I don’t understand,” said John.
“I’ve known rivers. I have cried my heart out and my soul – they grown deeper with every tear.
But I will never know the deeps that your rivers will cut, how fierce your rivers will rage, and how relentless and hard they must roll.
It ain’t gonna be easy being you, John.”
She lifted John’s T-shirt gently and put a hand on the right side of his rib cage.
“That boy sure did work on you. He broke two ribs – yes, he did.
If only people could put all that energy they put into fighting, disagreeing and trying to force things that can’t be forced- it would be a better world.
John breathed easier.
“You are healed – but not by my hand, John. Not by the humble hands of a crazy, old woman. You remember that…”
John felt better immediately: pain lifted, he breathed easier, and his mind became clear.
“Our hands must serve a higher purpose and cause. And more hands are always needed.”
“Two good hands ain’t enough. But it’s not just hands that are needed – it’s also hearts.
“You remember that too. Because any pride in the work of our own hands is nothing but foolishness. And something else. Pride always gets in the way of good hands.”
“I feel better,” John said in a surprised voice.
“Of course, you do,” laughed Mother Washington as she lifted her hands in praise.
“It’s impossible!” John stammered.
“Just you be thankful and live in the thanksgiving, John. Live it like there’s no tomorrows and yesterdays.
Because understanding, it comes when it comes.”
Cristina took John’s hand and squeezed it – it was time to go.
“It’s getting late…” John said.
“Oh – yes it is, children. And don’t you worry about the answers to your unanswered questions. Because I’ll be seeing you again, John.
Mayhaps, sooner than later.
There’s some things I have to explain to you before the lights go out and you need to hear what I have to say.”
“Like what?” asked Cristina.
“Never you mind, sweet child. Those dark days ahead, the great war, all of it, that can wait,” answered Mother Washington as she started to walk away.
“Tonight can be forever – when you are in love.
John and Cristina walked arm in arm to John’s apartment at Stirbei Voda Number 71. They talked about Mother Washington – they wondered at her words and John’s impossible recovery.
At the entrance to the vila, John introduced Cristina to Costin, a middle-aged man that was the nightwatchman for the building. As the two went upstairs, John looked back as the door shut and Costin gave him an excited thumbs up and big grin.
The heavy wood doors of John’s apartment were gilded in silver leaf and decorated with silver eagle knockers. John placed his hand on the door and the doors unlocked.
“Are you trying to impress me?” Cristina said to John and laughed.
“No-no. That’s how they open. There’s a bio-meteric scanner where I put my hand.”
“I bet that impresses all the girls you bring home,” Cristina replied and gave him a thumbs up.
“Wait until you see the paintings…” John said and winked.
John led Cristina through the entrance hall into a living room that lay under a large ceiling painting of heroes, heroines, angels, saints, and more. The walls were covered with traditional Romanian ceramics and icons. Across the floor, silk and wool carpets shimmered in the light.
They passed through John’s office with it’s ceiling painting from the Book of Revelations: kings and great creatures gathered around the seven horned lamb – removing his shirt and jeans and her blouse as they kissed. And then the bedroom, it’s ceiling was decorated with the baptism of Christ. John unzipped Cristina’s jeans and smiled.
A red tag inside the zipper read, You must be lucky!
John slipped off her black stiletto heels and pulled her jeans off as Cristina laid back into his bed. She arched her back and pulled off her bra as his kisses ran from her ankle to her knee.
Cristina gasped as he pressed his face between her thighs. She fell back into the soft, buffalo hide blanket – grabbing her own breasts with both hands. She shuddered and had the first of seven, long, mind-blowing orgasms.
Next Episode: Two good hands ain’t enough
All Rights Reserved by Stan Faryna
20 September 2012