The Hands of Time - Book Two

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Chapter Five

They could not confirm this; however, word had gone out and the local police were asking and parents who had noticed something wrong with their children to come forward. It transpired a few days later that a family of travellers had parked up in one of the fields a few miles away, and the two oldest children, had gone night fishing.

The oldest brother had got his line caught up in something and had slipped while trying to retrieve his line. He had hit his head before falling into the water and his younger brother had been frantically calling for help.

They told the police that one of the night workmen had heard their calls and had come over to see what was happening, and he had dived into the water, but had not realized that he also had become entangled, although he had managed to free the boy, and his brother had pulled him to the raft when he floated up to the surface, and by then he had woken and was frantically trying to get himself to safety.

However, he was so cold and, could not do much, it was his younger brother who managed to drag him onto the raft, and then row it to safety, and by then his brother although bitterly cold and shivering, had found the strength to run over to their tent, where they had old clothing, a towel and a portable cooking stove.

The younger brother had used that to light a fire and dried his brother, and helped him to get into dry clothes, and then they went home, leaving the tent and equipment where it was.

They had genuinely not realized that Andrew had become entangled and had thought he was himself safe and had gone to get changed into dry clothing. It was only when their mother had heard an appeal on the local radio network which covered only a small area, and it had asked the parents if they were aware of anyone who had gone fishing and had gotten into trouble.

The children had not told their mother about what had happened, however she had noticed the fishing rods were missing and also the children’s play tent, so she had confronted her two boys and in time they confessed as to what had happened.

As the man had undoubtedly saved her sons life, she contacted the police and wanted to let them know what had happened, and to tell the police that she prayed he would recover.

When Dorothy had learnt about the children having been night fishing, she realized there was obviously a security issue, and the problem had been that it was not unusual for the occasional fisherman to fish one of the carp lakes, and although the security cameras had seen and recorded two people putting up a tent and then carrying fishing rods, no one had realised they were not members.

They had not realized the lads had hidden a homemade raft a few days earlier and had intended to use it to reach areas where they knew some good fish were but were usually out of reach for most anglers.

Also no one had expected the night to have been so cold, and although the children were young and healthy it was only because their mother had insisted on them wearing thermal underclothing and warm top clothing that they were able to withstand the night’s temperature, however the disadvantage had been, the extra layers of warm clothing had also helped to pull her son under as the weight of them becoming saturated by the water, and had reduced the buoyancy and prevented him from floating.

Andrew awoke from the coma and after test the doctors were amazed that he showed no signs of brain damage, as he had been dead and without oxygen going into the brain, for some five plus hours.

The only answer which the doctors could come up with was the cold had placed his body into some type of suspension and it was in their collective opinion thanks to that, for which he had survived.

Andrew awoke however a different man and he looked upon life from that moment onwards with a different prospective. It had taken him some considerable time before he could bring himself round to talking about what had happened, and he had not as of then returned back to work.

He had phoned Armid and asked if he could come and visit him, and if he could bring that friend of his who he had called the Bishop of his church with him. When they had arrived, Andrew had made them welcome and they could see that he was unsettled and that something was on his mind and making him nervous.

“I asked you to visit me today because,” he paused and Armid noticed his right hand was shaking. “Because I am scared and I need to ask for help, I feel kind of stupid, and I know you Armid to well, and that you will not laugh at me or think I am losing the plot on life.”

He had to stop again; and he breathed in and took hold of his right hand with his left hand to stop it from shaking. Slowly he exhaled, and then continued talking. “When I went into the water to try and rescue that boy, I knew I did not have a dive partner with me, and I also knew I did not have time to put on the tanks. I had not known that somehow an old bed frame and a bale of wire had entered into the sluice area, and that it was this which was holding the boy down.” He stopped again only briefly to regroup his thoughts,

“Well as I arrived, his brother was screaming saying he has hit his head, and at that point I thought that was the only reason he had gone under, so rather than lose any more time, I knew seconds count, so I dived into the water, and it was then when I was under the water that I could see the boy and the entanglement of wire.

I had dived right into it, and my momentum was taking me directly into the coil, so I frantically tried to recover my position and to reach the boy. I did this and quickly released one of his trainers and as I could not untangle the wire that had wrapped itself into his trousers, as he had come to and then he realized I was there and he helped me by undoing his belt and pulling himself free from the pair of jeans which he had been wearing.

From there he was able to part drift and part swim to the surface, I don’t think he honestly realised that I was not following him. I tried to untangle myself, but the more I move, the more the strands of wire seemed to entrap me. Then everything seemed to be happening in slow motion, and I could see this strange tunnel of light, but I was not getting closer to it, it appeared to be drifting further away, until it vanished, and”.

It was there he stopped, he was shaking, and sweat was dripping from his forehead. His friends could see without question that he was deeply upset over something. However, he seemed to calm himself by breathing in slowly, Armid recognised what he was doing, it was a form of yoga breathing exercise, which was used to calm the body.

“I was in complete darkness, it was terrifying, but then I could feel as if there was someone watching me, and it was like when you watch the most horrific and terrifying movie ever made, but in this case it was real.”

Again, he stopped as his right-hand shock and he had to calm himself again. “I could sense a most evil presence, and it was drawing me towards it, I can’t say what it was, only that I was scared, more scared than I have ever been.”

Graham the Bishop from the ward could feel the Holy Spirits presence in the room, and he was about to speak to Andrew, when Andrew continued talking to the two visitors.

“I was so scared, the presence around me was not pleasant, the only way I can describe it was as if it was draining everything from within me, even my love, and it was as if I had been stripped bare of every emotion other than fear. I knew that I was destined at that moment to be separated from all that I loved, and I suddenly remembered a conversation that we had. and Andrew when we were serving together and there had been two of our colleagues killed, and everyone was truly scared.”

He paused and then continued. “That day I remember that you told me I could call upon God in Jesus name, and that is what I did, as I was entrapped in this dark pit of despair, with such evil around me, I called out to your God, the God that you once showed me how to pray to. And I called out to him in the name of his beloved son the Jesus the Christ. I was not even sure if I had done it correctly, but all of a sudden I found myself travelling out of the pit of darkness and despair.”

He paused to wipe his eyes and then continued. “I could see it fading away into the distance, and as I was travelling there was a horrendous screaming voice, all I could hear was this bellowing NO….” again he wiped the tears from his eyes and again continued.

“Then as the darkness faded so did that dreadful voice and sounds of screaming, suddenly I found myself entering a bright light, brighter than the sun, yet it did not burn my eyes, and it was warm and pleasant and there was the sound of a chorus of what I assumed was angels singing, it was the most beautiful sound that I have ever heard. From there I was standing on what looked like a golden floor, and before me were members of my family, and they were talking to me and telling me that I would be safe here, and that one day, I could return and be with them forever.

Again, he paused but this time to gain his breath, and then he continued. “Then this most beautiful person stood before me, and he told me that it was not my turn to die, I ask him where I had been, and he said that was the place reserved for all those who do not believe in Father God, I knelled to my knees and thanked him, but he would not allow it, he said he was but a messenger and that as I had called to Father God in the name of his son, and had done so in faith, that I was brought here.”

He paused to wipe his eyes and again continued. “When I asked him where this was, he told me, it was the place that the souls rested in and awaited the temple ordinances been done so they can be reunited for eternity with their loved ones and family members.”

It was then he went quiet, he just went blank and was looking into open space as if he was thinking, Andrew tried to talk to him, however he had not heard a word, and then it was as if he had found his memory and whatever he had been searching for, and he just continued from where he left off.

“He told me, that it was not my time and that I had to return, however I did not want to return, it was as if I was home, and I can’t put it into words, but he just smiled, and as I was drifting away, I suddenly could see myself laying on the hospital bed there in that room, and there was you Andrew, and you sir were there, you had laid your hands upon my head and had given me what I think you called a blessing, the next thing I was aware of I was back inside my body, and although I could not open my eyes, I was aware of your presence.”

He stopped talking and wiped his eyes, and then he went onto his knees and took hold of each of their hands, “Please, please let me thank you for that blessing, and please forgive me, I want to put myself right with your God, and I want to become a member of your church, so I can help the members of my family who have been awaiting me to do some kind of temple work for them, please will your God and will the church help me, and allow me to become a member?”

Graham stood up and along with Armid, and they helped Andrew back to his feet and gave him a welcoming hug, and reassured him that Father God loves him and wants him to return to him and to become a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and that in a short time he would become a member of the church.

At that meeting they explained what was involved and that if he so wanted that some Elders from the church could visit him and help and guide him and lead him into baptism.

It was an eventful meeting and the Holy Spirits presence was settled upon the home of Andrew that day and protecting him and enabling him to find the strength and courage he had needed to bare his soul like that.

Within a few weeks Andrew was baptised and welcomed into the family, and he was so happy and felt truly at home.

The day of the wedding had drawn in, and it was an occasion which all of the family were involved in, it was sad that little Sparrow was not present, and we even left a seat at the reception, with a card placed on the seat, saying RESERVED AND IN MEMORY OF MY BELOVED BROTHER. JOHN, YOUNG SPARROW.

It was a wonderful wedding and Janet and I were so proud of our daughter and we truly loved our new son; he was a good man and one who would look after Dorothy and bring her immense happiness in the future, and also been fully Temple Worthy.

They had chosen to honeymoon in Canada and had stayed there for one week, after which they travelled at will within a beautifully equipped motor home and visiting friends and places in which they had wanted to view for some years.

After three weeks they returned home, and had their staff collect them and a small mountain of parcels in which contained gifts for every single member of friends, staff and their families, and it went without saying that her sisters were delighted to have them back.

They had been living back with Janet and I, but in honesty they missed all their friends and their home when they stayed at their parent’s new cottage, they had shared a room, and although they were twins, they genuinely had different personalities, and in the next six weeks three of them were going on their own mission.

However, young Emma had refused as she was still suffering from the depression of her lost brother, she had wanted to go on a mission with her sisters, however the death of her brother had been such a traumatic shock that she had taken it so badly and her heart was still crying in pain.

She had become angry with God, and could not understand why he had not protected him, however what really hid behind all these feeling, was actually one of guilt, and if she was genuinely truthful with herself, then she also knew that she had to face her feelings, and at this point in time she had felt that her strength just could not cope with such a confrontation.

It transpired that God had woken her that morning, as he had woken many others, and had requested that they pray for young Sparrow, however she had been so tired and she had fallen back to sleep, but unknown to her, sadly so had several of the others who had been prompted that day.

As such she was upset with herself and also so angry, however she was hiding her feelings and had genuinely thought that it was her fault that her brother had died. As such she placed her anger towards the one person who she loved even more than her father and mother, Father God.

Her anger had also brought on additional feelings of guilt, as she also realized that she had no right to be angry with God, and her love for him was such that she was guilty because she knew she could dump a life time of anger upon him and he still continue loving her.

However, she was genuinely in no fit state to start a mission and had she have done so it would have possibly been an emotive nightmare of which would have taken even longer for her to recover from.

When the time arrived for the girls to start their mission and leave their home, I had taken them to the airport where they were departing to serve in Iceland, and although immensely proud of my daughters I was also sad to not have them close to me anymore.

Emma had requested that she could stay with Dorothy and Armid and be close to her friends in the ward, and they were a powerful group of friends in which she could draw comfort and strength from.

As the weeks became months, life had started to settle, and Emma was finding that her anger was subsiding, there were still days when she would burst into a torrent of tears, however there was one person who had recently come into her life, and he was a loving kind person, who she felt that she could talk to without feelings of further guilt for placing a burden of her feelings on to another.

Dorothy liked the young man, and she had spoken to the Bishop to see if there was anything in which she needed to be concerned about. However, he held a temple recommend and paid a full tithe, and he was early for the meetings and he was keen to serve and help others.

His older brother was teaching English in Thailand, and he had married there and now had a two-year-old son. His father had died some years ago, and his mother had never remarried, but had managed to bring up four children without additional help.

He had two younger siblings, a brother two years younger and a sister, the baby of the family, however she had since grown, and she was now eleven years of age.

Her love of her older brother was more one of childish faith in his abilities to do almost anything, and when her blood father had passed away, she had clung onto Simon, and kind of looked upon him to provide and care for them.

The oldest brother was living in Thailand and had commitments which young children had depended on him to help them learn English and to take sports and photography and art, which he was extremely good at teaching.

He had flown over for the funeral, and was prepared to stay longer, however his mother had insisted that he returned to his work, and that the children truly loved him.

Simon had taken on the mantel of providing for the family and had done whatever he could to help his mother, and after school he would do three hours shelf packing and did this for five days a week. This brought in sixty-two pounds of which he gave every penny to his mother, after his homework was done; he had put out the rubbish and helped his mother with basic housework.

During some evenings he had a calling to answer, and incredibly after work he would come home, quickly wash, change his clothing and go out to serve within the church.

On Saturdays he was free to become a young man once again, and on Sundays he was at the meetings early, and helped put out the chairs and prepare the rooms for the meeting.

Emma really liked him, and Dorothy felt they would possibly make a good couple together. They could not spend much time together, and Simon’s mother had told him to be an honourable young man, and always remember the church’s teachings.

Dorothy had taken Emma aside and had encouraged her to have fun and to enjoy herself, but to remember all that she had been taught, and that if she remembered all which the church had taught her, and honour Father God that she would be safe and have an enjoyable time.

Both parents and family members had also encouraged them to try not to be left alone for any length of time, and they went to various church functions, or to the cinema and occasionally for a meal at Kentucky Fried chicken restaurants or for a big Mac and an ice cream afterwards.

Six months had now passed since the funeral of little Mouse, and Emma had managed to face her fears, and had one night knelt by her bed and sought forgiveness from Father God, and it was as if a weight had been lifted from her and she felt a new person.

Simon had spoken to Janet and I and had asked if we would grant permission for him to have the hand of our daughter in marriage, and he had assured us that he would be honourable and even wait for her to serve in her mission.

I had long since being aware of who the young man was, and I was genuinely happy that Emma had found such a wonderfully strong and honourable young man.

I was also aware of the family’s financial position and that Simon had taken over helping to provide for his family, and this in itself showed me how wonderful was his character, and I had no fears in allowing my daughter to marry this young man if that was what she had wanted.

I had enquired about whether he was to serve on a mission, and he opened his heart to both Janet and I. “Yes sir one day, however I have been fasting and praying now for the last three weeks, as to whether I should ask Emma to become my wife and as to whether we could both serve our missions. Two nights ago, I received a vision and I saw both Emma and me together as husband and wife, and we had grown children of our own, and we were preparing to go on our long-awaited mission call.

I spoke to my bishop about this yesterday and he was comfortable with this and suggested that I spoke to you, sir and when I told him that I already had made an appointment to visit you today, he was truly pleased. He also gave me a blessing and I know sir it is the right and honourable thing to do before father God. However, there was just one thing which caused me concern, Father God revealed in the vision type dream that Emma and the family is to undergo some type of trial, but if we remain honourable and united then we will all pull through.”

Janet and I had both been taken aback by this news and we had sought Gods guidance as to what it could be, however all we received was that we had to fear not, and to remain united and strong.

Emma had accepted Simon’s proposal for marriage and she was elated and so excited, Simon had given her their family’s engagement ring, which had been passed through five generations before he had given it to Emma, and she loved the ring and had realized just how much it had meant to the family, and she was honoured to wear it.

I in turn had thrown a wonderful party and had offered Simon a position within my new business as a direct assistant to me in running the fisheries; it was an honourable position and had a starting wage of One hundred and Eighty thousand a year, plus company vehicle and full private medical care for him and his family.

It had meant that he could now ensure his mother and family were cared for and that funds were available for them to go to university whenever they were ready.

Having tithed his money and followed my example, he paid his tithe every six months and always gave more than the ten percent, plus supported all the other causes including fast offering, education fund and so forth.

Dorothy and Emma had taken the morning off and had gone shopping, and they were having a wonderful time together, and as they went about their morning together they laughed, and went into various shops and purchased new clothing and trying to find shoes which they like, and like a lot of young women, Emma was finding it difficult to make up her mind as to what style of shoe would offer her the most comfort, and still be in fashion.

They had called into St. Richards, a huge departmental store which had a wonderful restaurant on the third floor. There they ordered a freshly squeezed orange juice each and a light salad meal.

They were having such fun and had genuinely had forgotten when they last had been together and had such fun. What they had not realized were the group of women and men who had been so professionally following them, and keeping out of the security team’s radar, by constantly switching the teams following, and as nothing unusual had been noted and therefore no alarm bells were ringing inside the security team’s minds.

And whenever they had gone shopping in the past, they had noted that Dorothy always visited this restaurant, so some three months earlier when a position came available, one of their team members had secured a full time waitress job, which covered section C where Dorothy had always sat before.

The previous waitress had not turned up for work one morning and was never heard from again, so her position had become vacant and had been taken up by one of this team’s members.

Each of the security staff and Dorothy were drugged and within six minutes they had dozed off to sleep, Emma had been given a portion of alcohol mixed in with her orange drink, and a date drug included.

Emma had received a phone text message from Simon, telling her he had sent her a gift and a friend was delivering it for him, and when she arrived, would she go to the perfume and jewellery section and collect it in person from the staff there.

Dorothy was only too pleased to let Emma go and a member of the security team had gone with them. Two minutes later Dorothy was asleep as were all the security staff, the kidnappers had timed everything to almost the second, and knew the security staff always walked about about ten to fifteen feet behind their wards.

As Emma slumped to the floor, two people claiming to be Emma and Simons friend, went back to her and helped her to her feet, she was confused and in a drugged haze. “I think she might have caught this virus which has been going around, we had better take her to the ladies’ room and sit her down, and then we can go and get assistance from the staff,” they had said.

At that moment a man and lady came to their sides dressed smartly and asked if everything was alright and if they required help, telling them they were shop security.

Emma and the person with her, had asked if they could take her to the rest room where she could sit down, and from the shop floor all four assisted the security person into the rest room.

Emma was seen again, but no one had realized that she was been abducted, later security footage showed what appeared to be Emma, but dressed in different clothing and wearing a wig, walking rather sluggishly between two people who were gently supporting her but had been talking and laughing as if nothing had been wrong.

Every possible measure had been put into place to track Emma; however, by now the team whom had abducted her, had learnt their methods of protection, and in turn had placed Emma into a heavily led lined van, which stopped the satellite surveillance from tracking her signals.

Once inside the van they had removed most of her clothing and used their own high Tec surveillance equipment designed to detect such implants and show where on the body they were.

They had surgically removed the implants and disposed of them in a solution of acid. Then when they had arrived at a secluded location, they had switched vehicles and set alight the van, sacrificing the led lining and destroying any retrievable evidence.

Emma was kept in a drugged haze and constantly fed heroin, and from that time onwards, having no regard for her dignity or basic health, only ensuring she was not harmed in any other way and kept alive.

Janet’s heart was broken as was Dorothy’s, Armid and me, and we were ourselves suffering from the shock of this unexpected abduction, however we had remained as strong as we could, so that we could support our respective wives and family members.

I had long since become accustomed to the heart ache and the pain of such suffering, it did not make it any less painful, however these days I was able now to deal with the emotional trauma, more so than Janet, as ever since my young childhood I had been exposed to such dramatic pain, and as a result, I held my emotional responses together, and enabling me to exert a level of control.

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