David & 'Lyssabymillennium_bard©
This story was written by my late half brother Seasparks before he passed away.
He never got the chance to submit the story before he died, although we did talk about it many times.
So I am submitting his final story as a tribute to his memory.
This is only the first chapter of many that he had written for this story. The rest of the story will be submitted and hopefully posted as soon as I can get them scanned and edited.
* * * * *
Sometimes you find treasure when you are not looking for anything. But treasures can be a mixed blessing.
David Porter was not looking for a treasure, or for that matter, he wasn't looking for anything at all as he drove through the New Mexico night on 1-40 towards Albuquerque. It had been a long trip and David was tired. Near the town of Tucumcari, David spotted a rest area and decided to stop for a quick nap.
It was a decision that would take Mr. Porter on a very different trip than the one he had planned.
David found the rest area empty except for a lone semi parked at the far end of the parking lot. Finding a secluded place away from the lights, David pulled into the parking slot and shut down the car. The niche thing about driving a Cadillac, mused David, is the enormous back seat. He got out of the car and pushed the back of his seat forward, then crawled into the back seat. Then he curled up and pulled a blanket over himself. There was already a pillow back there, David believed in traveling prepared. David was asleep in moments, and he did not wake even though other vehicles came and went before morning.
There was just a faint blush of dawn on the horizon when David raised his head blearily to look around. Still half asleep, David slumped back down to the pillow; time enough for a few more hours of sleep. David might not have been so complacent had he been awake enough to look into the front seat of his car. The sun was well above the horizon, and the temperature was rising. This more than anything was what woke David up.
David was a normal healthy man of 34. So when he sat up and looked into the front seat of his car, he did what any hetero young man would do upon finding a nude woman sleeping there. He stared.
Long reddish blonde hair, Creamy complexion, full breasts, and slim waist, all looking great. It took David a few moments to realize that she was about 2 feet tall at most.
"What the...?" David blurted. He rubbed his eyes and stared again. She was still there. David reached out a tentative finger to lightly touch the sleeping figure.
Yup, real as could be.
David sat back and thought hard. He was better read than most, He had read maybe a bit more than his share of fantasy and science fiction. But David was also highly intelligent and was wont to read almost anything with words in a row. Including scientific journals and medical texts.
So far as he knew, a woman her size and so perfectly in proportion could not exist. However she undeniably existed, ergo, something screwy was going on.
David opened the door of the Caddy as quietly as possible. He crawled out of the back seat, and eased the seat back into its normal position. Then he slid into the drivers seat and closed the door just enough to turn off the dome light.
The girl on the seat beside him curled up a bit tighter and murmured in her sleep Nope, no hallucination. She was as real as he was. A thought that triggered another few moments of intense concentration and introspection. When David looked up again, the girl was no longer asleep. She looked up at him calmly with brilliant green eyes. The two stared at each other for a long moment. This is ridiculous, thought David. "Er... Hello there," said David.
The girl broke into a brilliant smile. "Hello there to you too." she replied. David noticed with a twinge of discomfort that the mystery girl had very sharp looking fangs as she smiled and spoke.
"Umm... If you don't mind my asking," said David, "Just who ARE you anyway? And what are you doing sleeping in my car?" David realized belatedly that he was being a poor host. Reaching into the back seat, David grabbed a souvenir T-shirt that he had purchased at a truck stop in Texas, and offered it to the diminutive passenger.
"Thanks." Said the girl, "you can call me 'Lyssa." She paused as she pulled the T-shirt over her head and squirmed her arms through the proper holes.
The shirt fit her like a tent. "As to how I got here," continued 'Lyssa once she got situated. "I have no more idea than you do. One moment I am going to sleep in my own bed, the next moment I am waking up in your car."
'Lyssa stretched her arms up over her head and arched her back as she yawned, highlighting both her rather impressive breasts against the fabric of her shirt, and her somewhat intimidating set of dainty fangs. David appreciated the former, but kept a wary eye on the latter.
"Just where is 'home' for you?" asked David. "You are comfortable with technology, or you would not have been so blasé about being in my car. And you have a grasp of my language that I suspect passes my own. Yet no one like you exists anywhere that I know of outside of fiction and legend." 'Lyssa grinned at David. "All in good time. For now, I suggest that we get moving, and I will explain as we go." David shrugged and shut the driver's door properly, then started the car. "Any place in particular?" Asked David as he put the car in gear and started out for the onramp. "Wherever you are going for now." Said 'Lyssa. "But I want to put some distance behind us."
David merged smoothly with traffic. He was still bemused. If this was all a dream, at least it beat his usual nighttime musings all hollow. It had occurred to David that he was taking all this entirely too calmly. Oh well, time enough to panic later. That had always been David's motto anyway.
"My home IS here, just like yours. Just at a bit of an angle to your everyday life." said 'Lyssa. "We are around all the time, you're people simply seldom notice us." David nodded. "Just a matter of a dimensional shift or a phase shift," remarked David. "The concept is not unknown, many writers have used the theory in books etc." 'Lyssa dimpled as she smiled at him. "I am glad I ended up with you instead of someone who would panic at my appearance." "I am saving up all the panic for later," quipped David, "That way I can have my nervous breakdown all at one time." This brought a tinkling laugh from 'Lyssa. "A sense of humor. I love it!"
David looked at his gas gauge. Almost empty.
"'Lyssa, I have to stop for gas up here. Will you be OK? Or do you need to stay hidden?" "I will be OK," said 'Lyssa. "But if you find a smaller shirt and some pants in the store there, I would appreciate something more my size." "Not a problem," replied David.
Leaving the interstate, David pulled up to the fuel pumps of the truck stop. Filling the tank of the Caddy took only a few minutes. Giving 'Lyssa a smile, David went inside to pay for the gas. There were clothes available, But the only thing in 'Lyssa's size were kids clothes. Sighing, David made the best choices he could including a pair of sneakers that might fit her tiny feet. There was a pair of pink socks that would easily fit 'Lyssa. So David carried all his selections up to the counter. He also had a variety of foods and drinks for himself and 'Lyssa. It occurred to him that maybe she had much different dietary requirements than he would be able to provide for. Oh well, David shrugged; he would cross that bridge when he burned it. Grinning at his own humor, David carried his packages out to the El Dorado.
David pulled out on the interstate again as 'Lyssa delved into the plastic sacks with all the glee of a child at Christmas. The shorts and the t-shirt fit 'Lyssa, and the socks fit just fine. The sneakers brought gales of laughter from 'Lyssa. David looked over to see what was so funny. Then he saw the little unicorns and rainbows on the sides of the shoes.
"Well," said David with a grin, "They are appropriate, mythological creatures for a girl who is from a legendary realm." "Quick wits should be rewarded." Said 'Lyssa as she bounced to her feet and wrapped her arms around David's neck.
She gave David a quick kiss on the cheek, then sat down again and slipped on her new shoes.
Kids clothes they might be, but 'Lyssa's adult figure filled them out in a way that leaves no question that it was a grown woman wearing them.
'Lyssa sat cross-legged on the seat next to David chattering away about sights along the highway and making droll comments about people in passing cars etc. All in all an engaging companion. But David did not miss the way 'Lyssa kept looking behind them and watching the mirror.
Nor did he miss the worried look in her eyes the few times when she was being quiet. David did not know what had 'Lyssa so worried, but he figured that if she was scared, then he should be extra wary himself.
David pulled over at another rest area just outside of Albuquerque. He was getting worried enough to take a few precautions.
Opening his trunk, David took out a couple of small boxes and carried them to the front seat of the Caddy.
"I hope you have no trouble with Cold Iron." Said David. "No, I am not of Sidhe blood." Said 'Lyssa. David opened one of the boxes and took out a small cloth wrapped bundle.
Opening the cloth David took out a pair of Cold Steel Magnum Tanto knives and their sheaths. Handing one to 'Lyssa. In her tiny hands the knife looked like a short sword. 'Lyssa unsheathed her blade and tested the edge with a hair plucked from her head. 'Lyssa raised an eyebrow in approval as the scalpel sharp edge severed the fine hair cleanly under it's own weight.
Resheathing the Tanto blade, 'Lyssa laid it on the seat close at hand. David tucked his knife under his belt on his left side. From the other box, David took a Para Ordinance P14 .45 auto pistol and a trio of loaded clips. Slipping one clip into the magazine well of the pistol and tapped it home. David racked the slide to chamber a round, and then put the safety on and laid the pistol on the seat. He shrugged out of his jacket and pulled a shoulder holster out of the box and put it on. Attaching it to his belt to hold it in place, He then slipped the spare clips into the holders provided on the shoulder rig, and slid the .45 into the holster. Then he put on his jacket again and started the car.
'Lyssa had proved able and willing to eat about anything that David had brought from the truck stop. Although she did turn her nose up at the Doritos chips. It seemed that she could eat them; she just didn't like the flaming hot taste. David cussed himself for not paying closer attention to what kind of chips he had grabbed. Oh well, he would know better next time.
'Lyssa nodded as she watched David prepare for battle. Good, he was a warrior, or at least ready to defend himself and her if the need arose.
And 'Lyssa was sure that it would.
'Lyssa was not sure how she had wound up in David's car, but she was sure that it did not bode well for her. This form was not one she was used to using. In fact, it had been several hundred years since she had last wore this body shape. 'Lyssa could read David's thought's easily enough, but refrained out of courtesy other than the skimming of surface thoughts when they first met for her own safety.
David did not stop again except for a restroom break until he was low on gas again several hours later. Inside the Stuckey's as he paid for the fuel, David saw a beautiful solid silver necklace that had an obsidian arrowhead attached. On impulse, David purchased the necklace and a smaller silver chain bracelet.
Carrying some food and his silver items, David came back to the car. For some reason David was uneasy as he got back in the car. Nothing he could put his finger on, but something was not right.
"Buckle up." David ordered 'Lyssa as he started the car. Startled by the tone of command in his voice, 'Lyssa did as she was told.
'Lyssa did not question David as to what was going on. She also sensed something was wrong, and a quick scan of David's surface thoughts revealed to her that he felt it too. David accelerated down onramp and set his cruise control at the speed limit of 75mph.
David relaxed as the feeling of wrongness faded behind them.
But he knew that he had not been imagining things. There had been definite peril back there and he was glad to be out of the area.
'Lyssa undid her seatbelt once David had relaxed.
She scooted over on the seat to cuddle close to his side as David put his arm around her. David kept a watch in the mirror and on the area to both sides of the car as he drove.
His home outside of Tucson was a long way to go yet.
And he was certain that things were only starting to get strange. It is just as well that neither David or 'Lyssa had any idea just how strange things were going to get.
David reached into his pocket and handed 'Lyssa a small paper bag. "Here you go," he said. "I never new a lady who didn't need at least one piece of jewelry to feel fully dressed." 'Lyssa was delighted with the necklace and bracelet. She put them on, though she had to loop the necklace around her neck a few times and the bracelet also needed to be looped a couple of times. "Thank you!" Said 'Lyssa once she had donned the jewelry. She wondered if David knew how useful silver and obsidian wore in the practice of magic. She thought probably not, but then, David had surprised her before. The unlikely pair settled down comfortably as the miles flowed by.
'Lyssa was concerned, but did her best not to let David know about her worries. She had tried to shift her form while David had been inside paying for the fuel. No luck.
Shape shifting had always been nearly effortless for her. To not be able to change was like sudden paralysis in a human. "Maybe a shape other than the one's you have already used." Said David. 'Lyssa jerked upright. What the hell? "You were broadcasting your thoughts rather clearly there for a moment," grinned David. "I have never experienced telepathy before. An interesting sensation."
'Lyssa was chagrined. She had not been so sloppy with her thoughts since she was a cub. Then the sense of what David had said sank in. A new form. Very well, something else to try when David next was inside paying for gas. David was proving more useful than she had thought possible.
"You might try simply adjusting your present form instead of shifting entirely, that may prove simpler to do than changing the whole thing," he said
More food for thought for 'Lyssa to chew over. David relaxed back against his seat and concentrated on his driving, leaving his companion to her thoughts. David knew of a route that would take a good 150 miles off the trip. A cut off that was a 2-lane shortcut to Deming, New Mexico. He pulled over to top his tank off before driving the shortcut. It never hurt to be prepared.
When he came back to the Caddy, 'Lyssa was sitting there in the shirt he had originally given her. And that was all she was wearing. She was also now about 4'11" tall. David grinned at her. "Very nice."
She poked her tongue out at him.
They stopped at a store on the outskirts of town, and David went in and bought 'Lyssa a pair of sweat pants, a shirt and some sandals. Once she had those clothes on, David took 'Lyssa inside so that she could get some other clothes that were better fitting.
'Lyssa picked out some snug jeans and a couple of shirts, some socks and another pair of sneakers. Once suitably attired, 'Lyssa took David's arm and sashayed with him out to the Caddy.
David mused that things were looking up. 'Lyssa was happy with the way things were going as well. When David pulled out on the 2-lane highway, he had no idea that he would not see his home again for a very long time.
"OK 'Lyssa. I think it is time to tell me what you are so afraid of." Said David as they headed west out of the small New Mexico town. "After all, I can't really do a lot to help you if I don't have any idea what the hell to expect." 'Lyssa pondered how much to say. "As you wish," replied 'Lyssa. "First, you have to understand that I am NOT human, even though I may appear so for now." "The 2 foot height and the fangs told me that much right away," retorted David. "And your shape shifting and telepathy clinched the deal." 'Lyssa said, "All right, I have worn human form before. But not for longer than you would believe. I am a minor entity where I come from. I do have enemies however. And I fear that they have sent me here into your realm where I am vulnerable and lack most of my powers." "Magic huh?" Said David. "It figures. If your enemies follow you here, can they be killed?" "If any follow from my realm, they are as vulnerable as I, but not by any means weak or to be taken lightly," she warned him "What are they vulnerable to? How can they be stopped or killed?" he persisted. "We are all vulnerable to your realms weapons to a greater or lesser degree. Knives can cut us, bullets can pierce us, and clubs can crush us. But some of my folk are armored, some are very large, and most have strong magic even in your realm. We all heal very fast. What does not kill us outright is healed in minutes or hours," she admitted "So are there any special vulnerabilities? Garlic? Fire? Farts?" He asked. "Fire can harm most of us. Silver can disrupt our bodies and nerves if properly bespelled. And certain woods and herbs are anathema to us," she said "Oak, ash and thorn? Rowan berries etc.?" he asked, half joking. "Well, not oak. But thorn wood, ash wood and Rowan leaves and berries will cause some of our defensive spells to go awry," she replied.
David was watching 'Lyssa as much as the road as they talked. Thus he did not see the figure standing in their path until it was nearly too late. "Look out!" Cried 'Lyssa. David jerked his attention back to the road in time to see a man dressed as an Apache of centuries past raise a staff and point it at the car.
There was a bright flash.
David blinked his eyes furiously to clear the spots dancing in his vision. Then he almost wished he hadn't. The Caddy was zooming along hard packed gray dirt. There were mountains in the distance, but the immediate area was flat as a table.
There were no trees, no houses, just a few geysers of fire off in the distance. Not trusting the surface he was traveling on, David reduced speed slightly, but kept going.
'Lyssa looked a bit sheepish. "Oh yes," said 'Lyssa, "there are powers and spirits native to your realm that do not appreciate interlopers from other realms encroaching on their territories, some we get along with. Some we fight. And some just send us home." "I take it that this is your realm," remarked David. "Yes, but we are far from the place I call home, she said. "Are your powers back as well?" he asked "I believe so. But I dare not try them yet lest we attract unwanted attention," She said "Don1t you think a Caddy screaming over the land at 60 miles an hour is not going to draw SOME attention?" David asked.
David hit the switch to open the sunroof. "Here, hold the wheel steady." directed David. 'Lyssa scooted over and took hold of the steering wheel while David squirmed out of his jacket. "Thanks." Said David as he resumed control of the steering wheel. 'Lyssa settled back in the seat as the car sped on. One direction was as good as another until she could figure out a way to get them back to David's realm. Until she could learn who her enemies were and what their motives were, she preferred to meet them where they were more vulnerable.
David found out just how suddenly trouble could show up in 'Lyssa's realm. One instant, nothing in sight for miles.
The next second, a huge 4 legged, bat winged dragon right out of the story books was standing right in front of the car. There was easily enough room for the car to pass under the dragon and between both front and back legs of the beast. So, operating on the principle that if putting on the brakes won't help, step on the gas, David floored the accelerator pedal. Steering between the dragon's front legs, David drew his pistol and aimed up through the sunroof.