Saturday, April 30, 2016

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 24

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Now for the next chapter in "Threat of the Fire Demon."



"Come on,” he coaxed. “What’s in the bucket?”

“Don’t press, Charles.”

She leaned back against him as he stood behind her enveloping her in his arms. They were admiring the garden and its bounty. It had never, ever grown as well. He turned her around.

“I want to share with the neighbors. At the rate the plants grow they could all have enough to store up for the winter.” He put his hands on either side of her face and raised it up to look into his eyes. “It was a horrible winter last year, Azur. I don’t look forward to repeating it and because of you, we won’t, but I want to pass the bounty on to my neighbors. I want them to be safe and well fed too.”

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 23

They put Simone to bed still clutching her fire opal. They came back to sit down around the table for another cup of tea and a biscuit. Saul was reclining on the couch where he was in much less pain then he had been since the mauling. Charles was pleased he caught several good sized trout earlier in the morning and Brela had worked her wonders with the last of the potatoes and dandelion greens she picked in the meadow. But it was a poor showing compared to the feasts Azur had set before them in her home. The biscuits with jam were a welcome addition and Azur, with her usual gusto, was putting them away one by one.

She was telling them about her journey. It had been a long one and grueling at times. Her people seldom left their land, so mapped routes were not available. It was a matter of finding someone in each world to director her to the next gate.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 22

Spring finally arrived. The snow began to melt and soon there was sunshine and green grass sprouting up in the meadow.

“There you go,” Charles said, as he helped Brela lower Saul onto the bench at the edge of the meadow behind the house. “A little sun will do you good.”

Saul settled himself on the bench which Brela had padded with cushions from the couch inside. The cat was no longer comfortable sitting like a man. His hip ached constantly so he preferred to recline like his cat ancestors with most of his weight on his uninjured right side and belly. He sprawled across the bench.

Brela hurried back inside and came out with a small table and set it within reach of Saul. Then she and Charles made another trip inside and brought back a blanket, a cup of tea and some biscuits. They fussed around Saul so much that eventually he hissed at them. He felt lousy afterward. They were just trying to help, but there wasn’t any help for it. He’d been mauled by a bear. He was hopeful he would one day walk again, but never, ever upright. He would be looking at everyone’s waist for the rest of his life and it angered him no end. He’d done a stupid thing charging after the bear without Charles close at hand for backup. It was his own damn fault and he didn’t want to impose on anyone because of his stupidity. Charles had a garden to prepare and plant. Brela needed to tend to Simone when she woke up from her nap. They both just needed to leave him alone to sulk on his own.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 21

It can’t be said that the rest of the winter passed without incident. A tree fell from the weight of the snow at the arrival of a later storm. It clipped the corner of the upstairs apartment where Brela lived in Charles’ house. They closed off the apartment and Brela had to move downstairs for a couple of weeks until Charles and Saul could make the needed repairs.

Brela was capable of making a dishrag taste good, so she made the produce from the goblin delivery stretch further than any of them thought possible.

However, in that sweet week in February when all the citizens of The Realms were teased by nature into thinking it was going to be an early spring, even the meat had run critically low. Charles and Saul decided to go for a day hunt. It was too much of a risk to stay out overnight. For the last couple of weeks they had heard the werewolves howling and Saul told Charles privately that he saw a vampire lurking at the edge of the woods. The natives were restless and they were the nasty sort you didn’t want to meet up with in the dark even if you were the last Light Bearer and a Baretii. Just because they had not heard of an incident between their kin and the vamps, it did not mean there wasn’t a chance if the later were hungry enough. As for the werewolves they would be willing to take down anything. They were just generally a nasty tempered bunch.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 20

Brela stood at the stove doctoring up her pot of beef broth with the last of her spices. By the end of the week she would be out of everything and hope of spring was still at least two months, maybe fourteen weeks away.

Saul arrived a week ago with what he had left of his supplies and a toboggan loaded with firewood. He moved in thinking he could help the family with what little he had and go hunting more often with Charles. He took up residence on the couch in the front room and assigned himself the tending of the fire in the fireplace which kept the house warm.

Brela found relief in the cat-man’s presence. Simone was just a child and a cooped up child was a bored and unhappy one. Saul was the child’s favorite playmate. He played with her so hard during this past afternoon that Simone was curled up against Saul’s furry belly on the rug in front of the fire fast asleep. Charles was napping on the couch. The cold outside and the continually piling up snow had made them all lazy.

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