Destinations 7.

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Chapter 30

“We should have bought the full armor suits. Why didn’t you think of that, Don? Tell me. What if--”

“Shut up, Doris. We’re stepping on the aisles of this colossal crypt, looking for our bodies, from a known prior life, and you’re nagging me about some sport shoes. Compose yourself!”

Shutting up, at hubby’s orders, Doris zig-zags from grave to grave. Truth be told, these are rather petrified bodies, laying on their backs. No encasings whatsoever. “Let me...,” talking to herself, she acts before finishing the idea, touching the heel of a sleeping giant. “Oh, no! Mmmm--”

Sensing trouble, Don returns in haste. His wife, on her knees, face over the stone of that heel she touched, trembles, like having a seizure, making one uniform sound: mmm-- mmm-- mmm--. He’s gotta push his Nike against the rock, while grabbing her by the shoulders, to get her back on her feet, out of the seizure and into the present reality.

“Oh, Don. What had we done?”

“We? I just saved you from sticking yourself to the stone here. You’re welcome!”

“No, not that, thank you for that. And this is not a stone, this is ARP, master of his own tree. Remember ARP?”

“ARP, Arp... arp... from nine o’clock forty-seven degrees West? Uh-huh, the ARP with his acrobatic wives? Let me see, ANT, ACK and AIX were their names. If I remember well, that ARP?”

To Don’s excitement and surprise (how on earth could he remember all those details?), she weeps and grieves and sounds like an old lady from the Balkans. “Yes, that ARP, we killed him. Yes, with his amazing wives ANT and ACK and AIX, we’ve killed them too. We killed all of them in this crypt. With our dumb xenophilia, with my insane revolutions, emancipation from the trees and all that nonsense. We had our brothers and sisters killed, Don!, look at them, petrified, captured in stone, dead, Don, dead!” More tears, more crying, more chagrin.

Silent, fixing her head between his palms, staring in her eyes, face to face, touching noses, Don speaks, “walk with me!” And they walk, hand in hand, down this aisle, down the aisle to the left, then to the right, then again, down to that other parallel aisle, parallel with this one, then to the left, to the right once more. Walking, never stopping. Yet.

“Halt!” says Doris, pulling his hand back to her. “We are now back at the heel of ARP. Have you mapped it enough?”

“Enough to make some sense, I guess,” mumbles Don, “breathe with me, this way, yes.” The hot vapors released from their lungs meet to make a little cloud, quite a meager one, where Don can draw tiny lines, in blue.

“It’s incomplete,” nags Doris, “we’ll walk this way, then when back here, that way, and so on, until the map will be whole. Follow me!”

“Nope,” he firmly keeps her hand tight. “This map is not complete, not whole, but is enough. It shows us what we need to know.”

“Such as?”

“Let me show you something,” that mischievous grin that she knows so well is an indicator, of a fight or of her fear to give it in to him, again and again, “see the orange lines?,” she nods, “these are the electric field lines; see the anode up here, the cathode down there, and pay attention to this, here, look, and here, look closer, see?”

“See what?”

“See the dents. A regular pattern of dents, matching with the positioning of every grave. Here too, have a look.”

“But the Moon has no magnetic field, it’s a known fact, attested and measured.”

“At the surface, around it, in the space surrounding it. But down here, we’re walking inside a Faraday cage. Plus I wasn’t talking about magnetic fields, just the electric force. Come on, Doris, you’ve seen stuff like this before, think, little bunny, think, for God’s sake!”

“We’re gonna need some magnets. Big magnets! What am I saying here, HUUUge magnets. Oh yes, my little teddy bear, we’re gonna change the status quo, we’re gonna wake ’em up. All of them! Ha, hah.”

“This is not (exactly) what I hoped you would say.”

“You told me to think, didn’t you?”

“I did, but--”

“Ain’t thinking about bringing back to life, those who died because of our recklessness?”

“Well, no, not exactly.”

“Why not?”

“Because it’s always a bad idea to play god. We did it once and look at the result.”

“But we’ve gotta do something. We must help them, right?”

Out of ideas, scared tremendously by the good intentions of his wife, Don calls the cavalry. “Oh, Lord, Yasu Khrist, Son of God, have mercy on us. Oh, Lord, Yasu Khrist, Son of God, have mercy on us. Oh, Lord, Yasu Khrist, Son of God, have mercy on us.”

Calming down, Doris understands where to redirect her search for an outcome. “Oh, Lord, Yasu Khrist, Son of God, have mercy on us. Oh, Lord, Yasu Khrist, Son of God, have mercy on us. Oh, Lord, Yasu Khrist, Son of God, have mercy on us.”

Breathing together, they get closer to kiss. “Do you hear that?”

“What?”

“Seems like a hissing sound.”

“Nope, maybe it’s inside your ears.”

“No Don. I can tell that this is real. Hear? Again! More intense now. Tell me that I’m not--”

“You’re not mad. I can hear it too. Like radio jamming. Let me...” Don tinkers with the gear around his wrists. “Breathe more steam into the hologram, will ya?”

Helping her out, together they thicken the orange lines, “see? there and there, they fluctuate, can you see that?”

“Let me zoom in. Yeah, two graves, next to each other. Four o’clock, a hundred and nineteen degrees East. Follow me!”

“Now I do. You’ve got a point.”


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