The Crystal Rainbow Ch. 36byNyasia©
Never throw away broken pieces;
you never know where they may fit.
A Fool's Book of Wisdom
The man awoke and stretched. He could not remember the last time he had slept so long or in as comfortable a bed. He smiled and stretched again. He felt good; his spirit lighter somehow. Then a thought marred his previous happiness and a small frown tugged at the corners of his mouth and drew a crease between his brows. He looked around and realized that he did not recognize the place where he found himself, nor did he remember just how he came about being there. The bed where he lay was in the center of a round room, the walls constructed of gray blocks of rough hewn stone. He struggled to a sitting position and his frown deepened, as his body did not respond as he thought it should. He felt sluggish and clumsy as if he were a wee babe just learning how to control his movements.
"Where the hell am I and what the fuck did I do last night?" He groaned.
He almost fell out of the bed when he heard a sniggering laugh come from behind him and a deep male voice responded, "Well, Jacob, you are not anywhere and, unfortunately, you did not do anything last night, but I most certainly did." As Jacob fought to turn his body around, the voice took on a serious note, "However, I would like to thank you for the use of your body. Your assistance shall not go unrewarded."
A female voice joined the male, "Yes, dearest Jacob, thank you. When you wake, we give you a choice: you may continue with your life as you have or you may avail yourself of the gift we left you. The decision is yours to make, choose well."
"Fare thee well, Jacob." Just as the voices echoed throughout the room, Jacob managed to roll over and promptly fell off the bed.
He sat up sputtering and spat out a mouthful of mud. He swiped his arm across his muddied face and dug a pebble from his forehead. He scrubbed at his eyes and when he at last found he could open them, he froze at the sight kneeling before him.
"Are you real or are you an angel?" He sputtered past the remnants of mud in his mouth.
The strawberry blonde blushed to the roots of her silky hair and then she brushed away some of the mud that remained on his cheek.
"I am most certainly real. What is your name, monsieur?" She responded in a mock haughty tone.
"I am Jacob," he rasped, "and who, may I ask, are you?"
"My name is Kimberly," she murmured, "I am most pleased to make your acquaintance." Jacob felt surprised to see her already pink cheeks deepened into a burning scarlet when he reached up and covered her hand with his own. A sudden clearing of the throat caused them to spring apart.
"I regret to interrupt this rather touching scene, but just where or from what hell did the two of you come? I am quite certain that neither of you were here a moment ago."
"No, Khalid, mon amour, they were not. She came with me and he, well, I do believe he was the vessel used by Cadmus. And now, his part is done. Monsieur, you are free. Xavier is no more. Your soul is no longer held ransom to the darkness." Helen smiled as she lay a gentle hand upon Kimberly's shoulder and squeezed. "This is Mademoiselle Kimberly and I never did catch your name the last time we met."
"As I just informed the lovely Mademoiselle, my name is Jacob. I do not wish to be rude, but can I get up and is there somewhere that I can wash off this muck?" He grimaced and ran his fingers through his sodden hair.
The older man chuckled and extended his hand to the bedraggled Jacob.
Helen stepped up behind Khalid and smiled. "Follow me, monsieur. We have a pump in the kitchen and a hip bath in my room. We can warm up some water and get you cleaned up."
Jacob returned her smile and started to follow her to the house, when Kimberly spoke.
"Wait a moment. What about those two?" She turned to look at Erik and Christine, who were still wrapped in a tight embrace and seemed to be quietly talking to one another.
Helen's smile became radiant. "Those two? I do believe that they have everything they need, do you not agree, Khalid?"
Khalid stepped up to Helen and snaked his arm about her waist. He nuzzled her neck for a moment, which caused Jacob and Kimberly to look away in embarrassment. Khalid chuckled and Helen soon joined him.
"Yes, I do believe that we now have all that we require. All of us."
Without another backward glance, he led Helen into the house and after a moment, Jacob and Kimberly followed them.