Paragangia Wiki

This draft was originally written in about September 2007. On September 15, 2012 I went through all of it, made the language more efficiant and updated parts to bring it in accordance to the current time line, in which this is taking place on an earth which has Paragangian technololgy, etc. [When the original draft was written I had not even began my Nano novel version, which was started November 1st 2007]

Part 1---9/29/2007 the new kid, Christian[]

As Emily walked into the school that morning he was coming out of the office. It was like love-at-first-sight.

She scarcely noticed His many piercings, dark makeup and long, dark, red-tipped hair falling loosely around small ivory horns. It wasn’t the rose tattooed below his left eye that caught her attention, or the red teardrop skillfully painted as if falling from the outside corner of his right eye. It wasn’t the dark clothing covered with chains and studs and buckles, the heavy boots, or the spiked collar. It wasn’t the fact that he was taller than Bishop Stone, by quite a bit, but thinner than Daniel. Emily had seen many people from other planets so this sort of differences didn’t impress her.

As other students stopped to stare before quickly and nervously walking away, Emily noticed only that the moment she glanced in his direction his well-practiced frown softened slightly. He turned to look directly into her soul as if he felt the touch of her eyes, then gave her a smile so bright it lit the universe, so small that only Emily could see it could see it.

Inside his dark facade he shone with joy, shone with life overflowing.

“Like Daniel Stone when he tells me about the temple,” thought Emily. “Only this one is wild and free; less direct than Daniel.”

Or maybe not., Daniel was guarded and aloof in spite of his insanely strict moral code, as if he was hiding something-- from himself, perhaps. This boy took pride in deception and enjoyed not being what he appeared. He was happy to share his true spirit only with a worthy friend who saw beyond paint and steel.

That would be Emily.

He answered her attraction like a magnet as if they had known each other forever.

“Emily,” she said, no need for more words than this.

“Christian” he replied, draping his right arm across her shoulders and holding up his class schedule. Glancing at the schedule she put her arm around his waste, threading her thumb through one of the metal rings on his jacket. A glance at his eyes confirmed they had the same Homeroom. The crowd parted before them like the Red Sea before Moses. Emily’s eyes touched the ornate bluish metal cross hanging against the white of his tight-fitting rib-knit tank top.

“Ankh” he said,

Not the cross of Christianity as Julie wore, but an ancient Egyptian symbol of life.

“Life and death walk hand in hand,” said Christian, meeting her eyes sadly, then smirking as the chill ran down her spine. He was referring—she knew-- to himself and to her, not specifying which was life and which was death. In that glance they had agreed to endure to the end as friends, to see who would live longest.

All in less than the time it took Emily to notice that the round-braided leather thong holding the ankh was in the shape of a noose and the steel ring between ankh and leather formed two grasped hands.

Christian’s eyes met Daniel’s before Emily saw him because Emily was focused on making her vow of long life and friendship with Christian. His eyes passed from warm welcome to barricade, from joy to hatred, from love to battle, as if the sun had gone behind a cloud. Emily shivered, spinning in the direction the laser beams were firing from Christian’s eyes.

Daniel smiled nervously. A silent exchange had already passed between them. Daniel met Emilly’s eyes and the sun rose again. Life returned to the hallway.

“Hey Daniel, this is Christian. Christian, this is Daniel Stone, my brother’s best friend. We’ve known each other forever. Sherman’s away at Med School in KC now, though.”

Christian smiled at Daniel, as if at an unruly child. “Understood, Mormon Boy.”

Emily was amused but not surprised that Christian knew Daniel’s nickname without being told.

Christian and Daniel shook hands politely, locking eyes and Daniel relaxed visibly, as if the gun held to his head dropped away. Emily didn’t know what had passed between them, but apparently they had worked out their differences.

Emily watched thoughtfully as Daniel’s eyes followed Christian, who was speaking to the teacher with his practiced frown. He was wondering who this guy was, Emily’s new best friend. Christian read his thoughts at a glance, even in unfamiliar surroundings while seemingly deeply engaged in conversation but Daniel somehow knew this boy was not a threat. He believed Christian understood. Maybe the Spirit told him.

“He looks like Julie” said Daniel, “Only taller and more decorated”

He was right. Emily had looked past the surface to the soul and missed what was obvious: long straight dark hair, pale skin, and dark eyes hiding more than they revealed. Emily saw through both Christian and Julie’s eyes easily while others took a step away as they passed. Both of them wore a consistent frown, and Christian’s Ankh echoed Julie’s cross. His oversized black jeans not unlike her floor-length black skirt—apart from the chains, that is. Even the jacket over his tank top paralleled her dark sweater over a white blouse. And both were very thin, though he was well over a foot taller. Maybe two feet taller. Emily, at five foot six, didn’t even come to his shoulder. Julie was less than 5” tall.

“So alike,” replied Emily, “and yet so very different.” She wanted to introduce them, to see how they’d get along.

Christian sat on the nearest seat in the front rather than walking back to Emily and Daniel. With a glance towards Emily he agreed to meet for lunch, and offered gratitude for friendship. He gave Daniel a different look, but Daniel seemed reassured. Christian then proceeded with his deviant and defiant teenager act, making the otherwise uneventful homeroom class more entertaining than usual. [this should be a scene not a passing mention] Christian was a performance artist, and Emily was his biggest fan. Looking forward to lunch with him made the morning pass quickly.

“Christian,” She said as he came out of class for lunch, jangling his chains and smiling secretly for only her. “I want to warn you about my friend Julie” “Thanks Em”, said Christian, resting his hand on the back of Emily’s neck as they walked. It seemed unnecessary to say more. Emily went on anyhow. “She’s a Christian Extremist” He laughed loudly. Not a joyful laugh; a harsh, defensive laugh like the lightning in his eyes when he first saw Daniel. Everyone turned to look at him, some with fear, some amusement, others curiosity. “Christian,” he hissed sarcastically, and like a demon and a terrified child rolled into one explosion of anger and sadness he explained “I’m Christian. I was named for them. I was born on Blue Destiny. The artists and inventors colony there. You’ve heard of it?” Emily nodded. “We created a peaceful haven on a glorious new planet far from the crowds and chaos of Earth. Then those Christians came.” He spat out the word like a curse. “We welcomed them peacefully, gave them a beautiful continent on the other side of our planet. But they fought us. They stole our lands, our homes, and destroyed what we created, all in the name of Christ.

Emily shivered, glad Daniel wasn’t hearing Christians to as He pronounced the name of Daniel’s God with such animosity. “We hated those Christians. The word Christian became synonymous with the word enemy. It represented everything that hurt us. “That war went on for years, and at the end, I was Born. My father was our leader. He was a great man” He paused in love and admiration, until she was ready for him to go on. “He hated fighting. Named me Christian as statement that we should find peace together, adapt and learn from each other and become one people. My father…” He choked on the words. A tear carried paint from the red tear in a small pink trail down his cheek. Emily hugged him. “My father was murdered by Christians”--he said the word with bitter hatred—“two weeks after I was born. I never knew him. But I know he was a great man. Such a great man.” ‘I’m sorry Christian I had no idea. I’ve heard about the Blue Destiny invasion. My father’s an Alien Studies professor.” said Emily “Dr Sherman Hawthorn” Christian realized, “No wonder you’re incredible. So, Daniel’s best friend is Sherman Jr. He’s pretty famous too, y’ know.” He shook back his red-tipped hair and returned to his usual expression, the smile in his eyes and the frown to hide it from the world. “I’d like to meet your friend Julie. Never judge a person by the name they’re given, or the name they choose.” “I’ll introduce you” But Christian wasn’t one to waste time on introductions. He strode ahead towards Emily’s usual lunch table where Julie sat near Sam, facing the other direction. Her thin shoulders slumped forward as she ate her peanut butter sandwich. Emily ran to catch up, wondering whether his ability to read minds was learned or inherited. Approaching with determined curiosity he called out “Hey Julie!” Her father was the only one who yelled Julie’s name. It signaled a long angry lecture, and maybe harsh punishment for unknowable transgressions. Instinctively she rose and spun to face him. The towering figure of a darkly-dressed young deviant with horns rushing towards her did not still her fears, nor were they hidden. …Clutching the heavy cross on her chest she stared terrified at the strange creature approaching. Christian stopped and his expression changed oddly when his eyes met Julie’s. He was about to kneel before the frightened girl, but thought better of it. He pulled a chair from a nearby table, sat with his elbows on the top of the back and leaned his chin on his fist, placing himself in front of the small wide-eyed girl still holding her cross in one hand and her forgotten sandwich in the other. They stared silently, heads nearly level, one wide eyed in terror, the other enthralled. “I love you, Julie” said Christian with perfect, sweet sincerity. Julie fled the lunchroom crying Part 2 -----9/29/2007---Christian makes himself less scary to talk to julie Christian looked at Emily, bewildered. He said nothing but she knew. He had been so distracted by his own feelings that he hadn’t fully considered the depth of Julie’s. “I guess your mind reading ability isn’t perfected yet” said Emily. “I’ll go talk to her” She turned to leave. Then turning back she added “introduce yourself to Sam.” Christian gave Sam his best defiant teenager scowl as Emily rushed from the cafeteria to after Julie. She caught up with Julie in the old courtyard, behind the tree, as she thought she would. Julie sat curled with her arms around her knees, sobbing. Emily knelt beside her and hugged her until Julie gained her composure enough to speak. “What was that demon, Emily?” “Christian” replied Emily, as if that should explain everything. Julie didn’t understand. “His name is Christian.” Emily added “He’s the new kid from off-world. You must have at least have heard some rumors by now” Julie never paid attention to rumors, but there were some things even the most withdrawn and anti-social of students couldn’t miss it. Christian was that sort of thing. Everyone in must be talking about the Goth giant from Hell by now. Julie realized that Emily might be right. Christian was a new student, not a demon. “But he’s horrible, Emily” Julie teared up again. “He’s really sweet when you get to know him, Julie. Give him a chance. He comes on a little strong at first, but he obviously really likes you.” “Not in a good way!” sobbed Julie, even more upset. Emily let her cry, trying to think of something to say. Something Julie couldn’t take wrong. “Hey Julie, Didn’t Jesus say that we should love and forgive other people?” Julie looked at her suspiciously. Emily usually carefully avoided the subject of religion, as Julie often tried to get her into a discussion. “People,” Julie retorted “Not alien demons with horns!” Julie probably understood that Christian wasn’t really a demon, though perhaps she wasn’t entirely convinced. Either way, she wasn’t ready to face him.

Julie went on “loving and forgiving does not mean we ought to surround ourselves with Satan worshippers.” “Satan worshippers? What makes you think he does that?” Emily shot back, exasperated at the fanaticism of Julie’s belief. “Julie is even more irrational about religion than Salina” thought Emily “That symbol he was wearing, didn’t you see that?” Julie defends “it’s a pagan symbol” “It’s not a pagan symbol, it’s Egyptian. And pagans don’t worship Satan anyhow. Neither do Egyptians. And that certainly isn’t what he wears it for” said Emily, knowing this wouldn’t convince Julie. Emily wished she knew some Bible verses, something Julie might not react badly to. But she didn’t. They had been friends for years, but Emily had never bothered to learn anything of Julie’s religion. Or of Salina’s “How well do you know this guy, Emily?” Julie asked, equally frustrated with Emily’s instant trust of every new person. A girl could get hurt really badly being so trusting, Julie thought. How well did Emily know Christian? They talked minutes before school and ten or so on the way to lunch. Could she claim she knew him at all? Yet she felt she knew him. And he knew her. She didn’t know why and there was no way to explain that to Julie. But Emily knew. And she knew Julie needed someone who really cared about her, as Christian would, Christian did. Emily wanted to help but she didn’t know how. Glancing up she saw a dark shadow cross the windows near the door. He had come looking for them. “Wait here Julie. I’ll be right back” Emily ran to reach the door before Christian “No” said Emily. “Julie isn’t ready to see you, you can’t.” She blocked the doorway to the courtyard with her body “You’re being stupid”. Towering over her, scowling in his dark makeup, horns and piercings, he did look kind of menacing. Emily understood how he seemed a demon to Julie, but Emily wasn’t afraid. With her hand on his chest she shoved him back through the doorway. He moved Reluctantly. His eyes were unreadable now, and he looked pale beneath the dark make up. RIght then Sam and Daniel arrived, slightly out of breath from hurrying to follow him. “Sorry Emily” said Sam “I couldn’t stop him, he wanted to know she was okay, and He’s really scary. I got Daniel because Daniel said he knows him already. And he’s really big, Emily. and really scary. You okay Em?” Emily giggled. Christian looked dejectedly at Sam, comprehending. Sam obviously thought he was big and scary. Julie must feel the same way. “I wasn’t trying to scare you Sam. I want to make sure Julie was okay.” “She’s alright Christian, but very she’s still upset and if you go charging out there like that, you aren’t helping.” “like that.” he repeated, Surveying himself critically, fully realizing how he looked to them. “Okay. I’ll change.” He said it with such confidence that Emily almost expected him to shape shift before their eyes. Instead he started unbuckling his studded cuffs. “You go talk to her, Daniel.” Ordered Emily. “She might listen to you. You can quote scriptures” “She hates me” Daniel argued as he moved to obey. “I’m Mormon.” Emily helped Christian unbuckle all the things he could remove from his costume, then gave him a hair tie and a comb, looking at the Horns. “Oh, it’s okay Emily. The horns come off easy.” He started to unscrew them. The bases are implanted in my skull, but my hair will cover those…Got a Band-aid?” She gave him one, unquestioning, and he went off to the boys’ room He returned in minutes scrubbed clean. Most people apply their make-up digitally. Emily rarely saw physically applied make-up, but often things were different in the colonies. His hair was pulled back to a neat ponytail, and the Band-Aid covered the rose which Emily now realized might be a real tattoo. He had also zipped off the lower, wider section of his pants legs and removed his jacket “Better?” He asked, putting on a smile that seemed practiced as his usual frown, dropping his jacket and pant legs by his back pack. He sat against the wall by the door “You bring her to me sitting here,” he requested. “’cause I’ll look shorter and less scary sitting down.” He did look less scary. He was a nice, normal-looking young man beneath the paint. Daniel must have found the right things to say. When Emily looked out they were heading for the door.

(Insert somewhere the conversation Daniel had with Julie, since it will be the first time they have ever had a successful religious discussion) Thanking Daniel silently, Emily put her arm around Julie’s shoulders, “Come on Julie, you can talk to him now. He’s just a kid, not a demon, see?” Christian was sitting on the floor, his left hand holding the Ankh just the way Julie held her cross when she was worried. He held out his hand as she approached him, letting go of the Ankh. Julie tried to back away. “He still has his satanic symbol.” “It’s not a satanic symbol, it’s an ankh” They all said at once, then they giggled. Sam giggled uncontrollably as always, which broke the tension enough to give Christian time to answer Julie’s fears. “My father gave this to me.” Julie flinched at the word father. “Before he died, I guess. I don’t remember. I was only too weeks old. I have always worn it, longer than I remember” he wraps it protectively in his hand, hiding it from her sight and looks at his fist, considering. “Life and death walk hand in hand.”

He said it very softly to himself, but she reacted as if he had stabbed her. Christian looked down at his closed fist, then up into Julie’s scared and confused eyes. “For you Julie, I’ll take it off. My life with you now is more important than my father’s death long ago.” Julie saw the importance of the ankh to him, but it still repelled her. Christian took it off, holding it hidden within his hands. “There, it’s gone now Julie. I took it off.” Emily looked at Christian but he didn’t notice because he is so completely focused on Julie. Seeing his pain Emily wants to hug him, but she doesn’t dare let go of Julie, for fear she’ll run away, and this would all be for nothing. Daniel puts a hand on Christian’s shoulder. “He’ll be with you in eternity man, be strong” “No” cried Julie “it’s not gone, it’s still there. I can still feel it.” “I’ll put it in my back pack” he suggests, knowing she won’t be satisfied. “I’ll throw it away” “No. It’s evil. I can feel it. You have to destroy it completely. You have to burn it!” she says, hysteria rising in her voice. “I can’t burn it, it belonged to my father” he said. Sadly and thoughtfully he opened his hands to look at it. “And metal doesn’t burn.” Then his eyes light with the full warmth of his brightest smile. In one fluid motion he rose to his knees, shoved it in his pocket and grabs her by both hands, beaming. He looked into her eyes. Caught off guard, She doesn’t resist. She sees the love in his eyes this time; he’s shinning so bright that no one could miss it. “I’ll melt it down for you, sweetheart. I’ll make it a token of my love for you; I’ll prove my self good enough to be with you. Give me one more chance. Please, I beg you. Give me one more chance. Forgive my stupidity, I wasn’t trying to scare you. Please forgive me.” Her face was softening as he spoke and she didn’t pull away. She didn’t trust him, but she didn’t run. He wanted to hug her, but he knew he shouldn’t. He released her hands and sat back on his heals, smiling, happy to see her there, not fleeing, not so afraid now. Then the bell rang, signaling the end of lunch. Daniel and Sam both startled and headed off as fast as they could to their respective classes. Emily said good-bye to her new friend, helping him up off the floor, and headed back to the lunchroom with Julie to collect their possessions. She had been looking forward to having an interesting lunch break with Christian, but this had been more than anticipated, and she hadn’t eaten any lunch. Part 3 wikki meets Christian After school, Emily goes to the lake and introduces Wikki to Christian, and they agree to make him an indoor pond where he can stay for the winter. what sort of vehicle does She have at this time?

Part 4 ---- 9/29/2007 ---Shondra, makeover, intro to Hell

(this will be part 4 because Christian needs to meet Wikki before this part happens, that will be part three)

“Hey Shondra, I’m home!” Christian called through the ornately draped living room as he entered with Emily.

The room was round, almost spherical, with curtain-draped walls curving into the ceiling and floor with no demarcation. Shondra appeared through the curtains as if out of nowhere, presumably from another room, but there was no indication among the drapery of doors, or lights or widows, just many different lighted areas seeming random. Emily had the feeling that she had walked into a giant squirrels nest: a cozy welcoming space but sliightly disorienting, like walking into a different reality that swallowed you up and made you a part of it. Like Christian, she realized.

Emily wondered if Shondra was part Paragangian. She was not quite as tall as her son, or as thin, but probably a bit taller than Daniel. Thick wavy brown hair fell in a loose braid over her right shoulder almost to her knees. Her clothes were as draping and multi-colored as the walls of her home and Her handshake was firm. She smiled warmly. “Welcome” she said, looking into Emily’s eyes with a more mature version of Christian’s knowing, mind reading look. “Maybe it is genetic” thought Emily, smiling back. If not, she could see where Christian learned it. Shondra glanced at Christian, silently asking about the change of appearance. “New girlfriend” he said, hastily adding “hopefully” Shondra raised an eyebrow questioningly. She knew he wasn’t referring to Emily. “Julie. She’s a Christian. Em’ly’s gonna help me redecorate, and I’m gonna help her with a shape shifter friend. Fair exchange. We’ll be using the basement” “Ok, have fun” said Shondra, as if offering to use the basement to help a shape-shifting friend of a friend was just what she expected. She turned and began to disappear through the curtained wall. “Oh yeah, and”…Christian called after her, pulling the Ankh from his pocket. “I need to recast this tonight…where’s my jewelry stuff?” Shondra made no reaction to his intention of melting down his father’s gift. She silently gestured across the room, and continued her departure. Christian looked at the ankh in his hand, then headed where Shondra had gestured. “We’ll get this started first” he said, disappearing through the curtains. Emily followed.

It was like stepping into another world again. No curtains here just a pleasant and comfortable workspace, white painted, with many windows and many different workbenches, tools, materials, and equipment for any sort of art one could imagine, all neatly organized. “Arrived late yesterday” explained Christian, handing Emily the necklace and taking some wax out of a drawer. “Haven’t learned the house yet …you disassemble while I shape my heart.” Emily obeyed. Christian explained the process of lost wax casting as he worked (insert here details of the process, use it for later analogies). 5 minutes later the wax had been formed into a beautiful, amazingly intricate heart-shaped pendant with the words ”Christian Loves Julie” integrated into the design. Emily smiled her approval as the young jeweler moved on to the next step of the casting process, covering the wax with some high-tech material which would become the mold for the metal. “It’s not the traditional metal for this” explained Christian. “This is what they mined on Beta Blue when the colony was first built, centuries ago, long before we took refuge there. We call it Bluestone, because it comes from Beta Blue, even though it isn’t blue. The planet looks Blue because of the way the ice is frozen. It’s an interesting metal, like a rainbow chameleon, it picks up colors from around it, and sheds the light into different patterns and colors, if you cast it that way. But this ankh was cast by a special process to make the colors all the same all together. It’s a very difficult process; my father didn’t have time to teach me. No one knows how to do it now.” His father didn’t really have time to teach him anything, “But I’ll learn someday. Rainbows are better than unity for my Julie, anyhow, so I’ll cast it in its natural form.

My father liked to explore, he traveled to the abandoned mine with Gaia, and collected the ore for this metal, and refined it himself. He’ll be proud of what I’m doing, he’ll be honored to be a part of this. I just know he will.” Emily was still struggling to untie the noose that had been in that same form for probably at least 17 years. She thought it was a little odd that Christian talked about his father, long dead, not really remembered, as if he were just somewhere far away, as if he had grown up with him, and they had practiced their arts together. “I think you have more of a relationship with your long dead father than I have with mine, and mine is still living” she commented, feeling a little jealous. “There’s a material like that on HomeWorld” she said, hoping to change the subject “it’s called Living Stone. It’s like a stone, but it can be controlled and commanded and it can grow and reproduce itself and change form and mass and volume and consistency in ways that are totally unexplained.” ‘I know’ replied Christian “I’ve studied it. Gaia was very interested in Dr Hawthorn’s research on Living Stone.” Emily drew a deep sigh. She didn’t want to talk about he father. Christian immediately realized his mistake and changed the subject. “On Hell we don’t go to schools like you, we learn and practice and mentor each other; We learn whichever skills interest us, though all children are encouraged to master certain basic skills that all will need. We also leave records, video lessons of the special things we can do, in case the one who is meant to follow us does not arrive while we still live in Hell.” “Do people join Hell, and leave Hell? I suppose so. You and Shondra left” “It isn’t easy to leave or to join” he said. ”and once you leave, it’s very hard returning. That’s why I didn’t come right away when Shondra abdicated.” “Abdicated?” “Shondra had been the Queen of Hell, as long as the colony existed, by the common consent of the community. But, for many reasons, she decided to leave.” “What’s it like on Hell?” “Hell is my home, Emily, my family. It’s not like other planets or cities or communities. The whole colony is all one loving family, we share everything, we work together to help eachother live to their full potential. Children are planned very carefully, and the health of every member is carefully guarded. There were few children born during the latter years of the war with the Christians. Once the war became the focus of the lives of the artists on Blue Destiny, they stopped having Children. War is not a good for children. When I was born, no other children had been born for almost 10 years. I was the first, the eldest of the new generation. But there were 5 others who were conceived on Blue destiny soon after me, so that I would not grow up alone. Those five, They came into this world with theie sole purpose to make my life better. They are very special to me, probably even more than the brothers and sisters of traditional earth-families. We shared everything.” Emily thought of her brother Sherman, how she missed him now, and Sam and Daniel, how excited both cousins had been to finally have a sibling of sorts, even though they weren’t really brother and sister, and didn’t have a lot in common. “When we moved to Hell, many more children were planned and born, But I was the firstborn, the Prince of Hell, the son of Nichodemus the Martyr. they all looked up to me as their leader, their representative, their mentor, the big brother. Almost a patriarch of sorts. We were a family; equal in all things but yet. I was still the eldest still the prince.” “When I saw your eyes this morning it was like one of my Hell sisters, like someone I’d known all my life, except I could tell that you saw me as an equal, not as the prince of Hell.” He looked at her, still trying to untie the knots “here let me help you” he said taking the necklace from her. “I needed you so much right then, Emily, you just can’t imagine. You saved my life right there.” “Well, you were a great relief for me too Christian, the past moth in my life has been a wild ride, it’s nice to have someone who understands.” “And Daniel Stone?” asked Christian, cautiously “He’s like a brother, isn’t he?” Emily considered Daniel “Sort of. We grew up together, because he and Sherman were best friends, and we stayed at Stone’s when mom was on tour or something. But he’s not like a real brother, not like Sherman. He’s always so intent on his sports and his church and his music. We’re not exactly even friends; he’s just always been there.” “It’s comforting to have things, and people who have always been there for you, isn’t it?” “I suppose” she answered suspiciously, wondering where he was going with this. “And Julie, she’s been there for you a long time too, right? Imagine what it would be like to leave them behind, to go someplace where the rules are all strange, where they think you’re a demon just because how you look. and everyones smaller and thicker here because they grew up with more gravity. and the gravity here, it weighs me down all the time. Imagine what it’s like Emily.” He pauses to let her imagine. “Leaving Hell is very hard.” “Are you going back?” she asked. He worked silently for a few minutes, and she left him to his own thoughts. After awhile, he looked back at her. “I want to go back, I never wanted to leave, but I had to come here to be with Shondra, I just had to. I don’t know why, but staying there without her wasn’t right, and leaving her here with no one wasn’t right either. She’s my mother.” He considered silently again. “I was hoping she would come back to Hell with me, after awhile. I never considered not going back. But I’m not sure now. I don’t see Julie ever joining Hell colony and I don’t know if I could leave her behind. This is hard for me Emily, very hard, I’m so glad I have you here to help me” He grinned at her, and she grinned back “I’ll miss you when I go back, too” he said seriously. “I still intend to go back. I’m keeping my options open. We have very strict health laws on Beta Blue. I’ve made a commitment not to have any sexual contact or any exchange of bodily fluids with anyone outside the colony. We do this to preserve the purity of Hell. Purity is freedom. There are no sexually transmitted diseases in Hell because we have been very fastidious about keeping them out. Our strict health codes seem to some to be limiting but within the colony the give us freedom not to be concerned with many risks others have to consider n close personal contact. There is a long health screening I’ll have to endure upon my return, and quarantine. It’s much worse for new members, and also worse for those who may have exchanged bodily fluids with anyone outside the colony.” “So you have taken a vow of celibacy for the time you are on earth?” asked Emily “Yes, basically a vow of celibacy” “I guess that’s something Julie won’t need to fear from you then. Her religion doesn’t condone sex at all. I think they consider it a sin even in marriage. There are very few children in her church. Unlike Daniel’s church which is crowded with them” Christian smiled at Emily, thinking of her a few years older, with Daniel and a bunch of little children. Emily would make a lovely Mormon mother, thought Christian. But he kept it to himself, knowing she wasn’t ready to face Daniel’s feelings. “I’ve studied his church, especially their art and jewelry. That’s how I knew he was Mormon; He wears a CTR ring” Emily laughed “and we were thinking you really could read minds.” “But maybe I can” he winked. “I like Mormon beliefs. Zion, the pure in heart, where there are no poor among them, and they were of one heart and of one mind.. It’s a lot like Hell, really, only based on a different moral code. Julie’s beliefs, on the other hand, sound similar to the Christians of Blue Destiny. My father was right, you know? Our basic beliefs were not that much different than theirs; we just went about trying to achieve them in a much different way. I often wonder what it would be like if he had succeeded, and we were living together in peace now on Blue Destiny” “Is that why you want to be with Julie?” said Emily, suddenly suspicious of his motivations, remembering how intent on meeting her he had been when all he knew was that she was a Christian Extremist. “To live out your fathers dreams of uniting Christians and artists?” He looked hurt “of course not. I take each person as an individual, not as the group they belong to or how they were raised.” Emily still had an odd feeling. Her thoughts rang true and his defenses sounded defensive. “sometimes we don’t understand ourselves as well as we think we do.” “Very true” he said, thinking of Daniel. They looked each other in the eye “I love her, Emily” “I know” and this also rang unmistakably true. Christian loved Julie, whatever other motives he might have. [Add more in this conversation about BlueStone and Gaia] Soon he had a completely remade necklace. The ring with clasped hands held the heart on the same braided leather necklace, no longer a noose, but now formed into a simple endless circle just long enough to slip over Christians head. Emily was very impressed “you’re an amazing artist, Christian” Looking at his handiwork, Christian smiled “I should make one for Julie.” Emily shook her head “too soon, Christian, way too soon.” Christian’s smile dropped to sadness. Of course she was right. Then he smiled again “I don’t mind, she’ll be well worth waiting for. Let’s go get the water ready for your friend.” It’s getting late Christian. let’s not start the pond until tomorrow. I want to help you correct your appearance for Julie tonight, ok? make this a conversation. ] [talk about why he is going to school while he is on earth] Then they went to Christian’s room [describe his bedroom] to try to make him look less scary for Julie. {have Emily explain the color changing device her dad got her, which is a Paragangian technology, which she shares with her mother because her mother is a performing artist and it is used for stage makeup. they might play around with it, one of the defaut settings being Paragangian, they would check out how each of them looks with pure black skin. they would talk about Paragangains, an Shondra’s ancestry which might be part Paragangian or Proto-Paragangian. they might talk about other extra terrestrial people living in Hell colony The coloring of his hair had been applied digitally, of the more reversible type, so Emily, who was very skilled at digital hair recoloring, even reversals, which is the trickiest part to do, was able to restore his hair quite perfectly to it’s natural color and texture, which was loose dark brown waves like his mother’s. They decided on a loose, natural hair style for him…less than shoulder length, but not as short as Daniel’s. This way fullness of the wavy hair would cover his ears so the holes from his many piercings there would not be visible. He still had the rose tattooed on his face. It had been done in a more permanent way, and was beyond Emily’s skills to remove, but Julie might eventually grow to accept that part. In the meantime, she used some removable coloring on that part also, making it invisible, though it was still there.

[talk about the Rose tattoo, how and why he got it, and perhaps he would have a story for each of the things they removed.] Sitting down, dressed in a plain, light brown long-sleeved polo shirt, he could pass as a normal teenager now. Looking closely, you could still detect holes on his lips, nose and eyebrows, but they weren’t too obvious in comparison with the light in his eyes. When he stood up, he would still be a giant. perhaps he could get out of class early at lunchtime and be sitting before Julie arrived. That way, she wouldn’t see him standing. But on the other hand, Julie might choose a different table if she saw him sitting there. maybe it would be better if they just asked Julie to close her eyes until he was seated. They decided to try this approach. Even seated, Christian would tower over Julie, but there was nothing that could be done about that. Ad if he sat across the table from her, his height wouldn’t be as obvious. She had always been shorter than everyone so that alone should not be intimidating

Part 5---the next day….Julie loves Christian, too[]

Emily went to pick up Christian in the morning, they wanted to arrive together. [What’s Emily driving these days? ] As Daniel stepped down from the school bus that morning, the first thing he saw was Emily walking arm in arm with a tall boy with wavy brown hair, dressed in an indistinct t-shirt and blue-jeans. Jealousy flared before he could stop it, before he remembered who the stranger was. He paused at the bottom of the stairs, squeezed his eyes shut and said a prayer while other students pushed to get off the bus behind him. “Hey Danny” yelled Sam from the top of the stairs, “stop staring at Christian and get out the door.” Christian. Oh. Right. Daniel stepped aside, and his bouncy blonde cousin jumped down the stairs. “C’mon Danny, they’re getting away” she grabbed his arm, and pulled him towards school “Hey Emily, wait up!” she yelled. Emily turned and smiled. Daniel smiled in spite of himself. Seeing Emily acting so intimate and loving with anyone gave him a hollow feeling inside, not because Christian was with her, but because he wasn’t. “It’s not fair” he thought, pouting on the inside while smile back as Sam dragged him up the stairs by the arm. “I wanna see what you did to Christian, Emily, oh, he’s so cute, Still not as cute as Sherman though.” she winked at Emily, He had a simple, honest face, attractive but unremarkable, and beautiful dark-chocolate brown eyes, “I’m surprised you didn’t make him shorter, Emily”. “Even with Paragnagain technology I can’t de that”, said EMily Sam ran up two steps higher than where Christian was standing, and turned to face him. Reaching out she put her hands on the very tall new boy’s shoulders , giggling “see….I’m almost as tall as you now Christian” Christian smiled back, grabbing Sam by the waist and swinging her around to drop her down gently onto the stairs below him. “Now you’re a little pixie, and I’m taller than the mountains” Daniel laughed. Sam was looking rather pixie like that day anyhow, The giant bow on the back of her ruffled, flower-like mini dress almost made her appeared to have wings, especially flying thought he air in the hands of Christian. Sam shook her head gleefully and the ribbons tossing in her hair only added to the pixie illusion “Yay! that was sooo sooo fun!!!!! I’m a little pixie, make me fly again Christian” she squealed, “like at three year old” Daniel thought, affectionately. He loved how Sam enjoyed the smallest things in life, never afraid of what people would think of her .Childlike, he thought. Jesus said, become as a little child. We should all be more like my little sister Sammy. He tears stung his eyes, tears of testimony ,as the spirit bore witness of this truth but he fought them back and fought the urge to wipe his eye. Boys don’t cry, not at school, and he saw his own fear in the light of Sam’s fearlessness, ad knew with all his soul, he should be more like Sam. unafraid. “if I was unafraid like Sam I would be with Emily” He banished the thought quickly, reminding himself again ”I can never be with Emily” the denial he had practiced for so many years didn’t comfort him. Sam was staring at him, she touched the tear on his check “what’s the matter, Danny?” he scowlled and brushed he aside with embarassment The spirit was gone, and he felt sadness for having ruined the moment with inappropriate thoughts. and with fears. Whenever he really felt the Spirit his one weakness took it away. His love for Emily. How could something that felt so good be wrong? “Thou shalt love God above all else,” he reminded himself, “have no other Gods before me” he reminded himself.”f you look at a woman to lust after her you have committed adultery with her already in your heart” He felt bitterness. “She’s a drug” he thought “and I’m addicted” He wanted to run and hide, from God, From Emily from everyone. From his carefree cousin Sam who always lead him into thinking such things, and kept bringing him closer to Emily; facing him again with this feeling, and this failing. “I’m going to class” he said hastily, and hurried off up the stairs two at a time. Sam looked after him, “Oh. He’s grumpy this morning Emily. He sure hates seeing you with other men” but Emily and Christian were paying no attention to them now.

“Stairs!” exclaimed Emily. “We can use the stairs to make you shorter.” She ran off to get Julie from the back courtyard where Julie always studied before school, leaving Sam and Christian playing, childlike, on the front stairs of the ancient building. Julie turned when Emily opened the door. At first Emily thought she had startled her, but it was more as if she had been waiting. Julie smiled, and greeted Emily, which was a bit unusual for Julie, especially lately. Her long dark hair looked freshly washed and brushed, and though she wore the same plain, colorless and all-concealing clothes she always wore, she seemed to have taken a little more care than usual in her grooming “Hi Emily” she moved over on the bench to make room. “I’m glad you’re feeling better today Julie,” said Emily “I have something to show you on the front stairs. Come see,” Julie seemed afraid, but a little excited too, but there was something in Emily’s eyes she just shouldn’t say no to, as if the Spirit of God had taken her over and was moving her to action. Julie put her Bible into her back pack and let Emily take her hand and lead her to the front door where destiny stood waiting for her in blue jeans and a tan t-shirt. Sam knew the instant Julie arrived at the door, because Christian suddenly transformed from her huge, childish playmate into a calm serious young man leaning against the railing on the third stair down. He waited quietly, eyes fixed on Julie, as she came out the door with Emily. Emily’s teal curs rippled in the wind as she walked in front keeping careful eye contact with Julie as they walked and talked, until they were near the top of the stairs. She wrapped her arm around the small girl’s shoulders guiding her to where Christian waited “Julie, I want you to meet my good friend Christian Stauss. He wants to be your friend, please forgive his misbehaviors on his first day in a new school, on a new planet in an alien society and don’t judge him until you know who he is.” Christian held out his hand, smiling slightly. “I forgive you” said Julie, almost a whisper, as she reached out to politely shake hands It was as if lightening passed between them when their hands touched, as if by touching her hand he had become part of her or made her a part of him and they had become one being. As if that instant holding his hand in hers was all that had ever existed or all that would ever exist in the universe, No God no fears no school, no Emily and Sam standing by nervously hoping they wouldn’t have to run after her crying again.

Christian with all the strength of his being resisted the urge to hug her, just to wrap himself around her to make real and physical the incredible oneness that he felt when her hand touched his. But he was prepared this time. No way would he risk scaring her again. However, he could not resist the desire to grin brighter than the sun, and she grinned back, surprising everyone but him, for he was the only one not knowing she had never, never been seen to grin before. He held her tiny hand softly, carefully, gently, engulfed completely with all of his attention in love and concern for her, completely tuned to her spirit to every detail of every motion, every breath to every indication of her feelings. Who could possibly turn away from love like this?

For a moment she couldn’t, and she looked deeply into his eyes and let her soul be scanned the way that he had read Emily and Daniel’s minds when he first came to the school. He would have been happy to just remain in her eyes forever, standing on the stairs. But after the few seconds which a handshake lasts, and then a few seconds longer while Julie caught her breath and remembered who and where she was, Julie’s soul withdrew from him, her face returning to it’s usual closed expression “nice to meet you” she said, the polite response that one should offer after a handshake, and she with that withdrew her hand and her eyes from him also. He felt in her a slight reluctance to pull away, as if she was struggling within herself, and that was some consolation for the tremendous cold emptiness that filled the gulf she left behind when she drew her warm unity away from his soul. He feared She was about to turn and leave, she might walk back through those doors to the school and disappear back into her isolated darkness leaving him behind as if he never existed. He could never let that happen.

His hand, left cold and empty as her hand withdrew, reached instinctively for the comfort of ankh necklace which yesterday had been recast into a heart, and he called after her “Julie, I made this for you”…he hadn’t planned it this way, but he took it off and handed it to her. For a moment she recoiled, remembering the symbol which had so offended her the day before. But she had seen the love inside his eyes and now she trusted him, and knew he would never harm her, if it was in his power to make it right.

So she turned back to him, received the necklace into her hands. She glanced at it. recognized it was a heart. Stretching over, reaching up she placed it back over his head, the softness of his now short wavy brown hair brushing softly against her hands as she carried the braided leather down onto his neck, her fingers against his skin electric as the handshake, only so much more special now because this touch she gave him freely, with no prompting. In heaven he was, as her fingers traced down the braided leather and the side of his neck, and then down his chest. He felt the warmth of her fingertips through the thin cotton of his shirt. Tears of happiness began to flow from his eyes. He didn’t wipe them away or realize it might seem silly to someone else to be crying for joy just because she put his necklace on. He didn’t move touch her, to answer her caress; he just received it in with all his being. Her hands reached the heart and, leaving her left hand resting lightly against his chest, her right index finger traced the tiny letters.

She read softly aloud “Christian loves Julie” Tears came to her eyes then also, “it’s beautiful” she said, awed that he really did this for her, and that he had been able to do it over night. She took in the beauty of every detail of his art –for her--and craftsmanship with growing wonder at both his skill and his love. She looked into his tear filed eyes, as he stood on the stairs, overcome with emotion.

“Thank you” she whispered, not as herself but as someone she never had known existed within her “I love you too Christian” and then she was gone, back up the stairs into the school, back into herself, her loneliness, her religion, her pain and fear. the terror that was her life. But she would never really be the same again. the shell she lived within had been shattered like humpty-dumpty falling from the wall, never to be put together again.

Christian stood unmoving on the stairs, tears still flowing from his eyes, lost in the joy of the moment. Sam and Emily left him standing there immersed in perfect love, and went to class. Emily wasn’t surprised that he never showed up for homeroom that day.

(move the pond to a different day)

Part 6[]

Left open for the band to begin forming? Part 7 Left open for Wikki

Part 8 shared dreams[]

Left open for Julie and Christian to dream about each other and hang out together at school on Monday part 9??? Part 10 10/3/2007 'Christian rejects his implants (Tuesday before winter break) After a week or so of friendship, Julie finds out who Christian really is and where he came from. Preceding this part of the story we will be introduced to Julie’s father in a drunken rage, and Julie thinking through things she has heard from or about Christian, and thinks she has heard or seen from or about her father. There will be flashbacks of other drunken rage, and Julie will be begin to put it all together…lest ye think her final understanding here would be based primarily on information given in this section. It is not. Also before this section they will have the shared dream which I promised before. Actually it might occur the night immediately preceding this, so that part may in the end be added into this section also. It is Tuesday, the last week before winter break.

As always, Julie is sitting down eating her peanut butter sandwich when Emily and Christian arrive. Emily drops her books in her usual place, and goes to get lunch,

“Hi honey” says Christian, hugging Julie and then sitting down in a chair beside her, around the corner of the table, to her right. She notices he seems to have no intention of getting a lunch, and he seems much less energetic, more subdued than normal. She senses something might be wrong, but does not really register the thought “you should eat, Christian” “not hungry” he brushes off her concern “only a few days left together before the break. I’ll miss you, Julie” he lays his head down on his hands on the table and looks up at her longingly “but just knowing you exist makes it all worthwhile’ “I’ll miss you too” She looks into his eyes, still eating her sandwich. No one speaks. She finishes her sandwich, takes a drink of her milk and wipes her fingers on a paper napkin. She brushes back his hair from his face. He felt warm. He smiles lovingly at her touch, and she smiles back. He tries to catch her hand as she pulls it away but she easily evades him, reaching for her apple. Emily returns with her lunch. Christian sits back and looks at Emily across the table, resting his arm on the back of Julie’s chair, with his fingertips resting gently on her back. Julie could feel the warmth of his touch through her sweater. He radiated warmth. “I must be cold today,” thought Julie, enjoying the warmth. “What are you doing over the break Emily?” He asked

Emily looked sad as she considered the question “I dunno Christian, not much I guess. Mom is still off world, Dad and Sherman are busy working on their big project, and Dana already left to go home with her family, so I’m all alone now. I guess I’ll just hang out with you. “Awesome” he replied with no enthusiasm. Sam sat down with her lunch then “How do you celebrate Christmas in Hell, Christian?” Julie glared at Sam “Sorry Julie, I don’t mean that kind of Hell, the colony Christian is from is named Hell, right Christian?” Julie spun to face him, eyes wide, pushing away from him, dream Images spinning in her mind, remembering him saying in her dream “I am Christian the prince of Hell you will serve me well now…in his horns and pain from the next day, melting and fading into her friend Christian, crying…”save me Julie!” sadness and terror filling his face, falling to his knees. As she reached out for him and he receded, faded, vanished, leaving only an empty seashore, a shadow of his voice in the wind and the surf. “You lived on Beta Blue?” she asked, shocked and incredulous, pieces falling into places in her mind, like waves crashing on the dream-shore. “and You’re Christian. Christian the Prince of Hell” He stared back pale, startled, and a little off balance from the chair back having been suddenly pushed from beneath his arm. He had always known in the back of his mind that she might not be very easily accepting of his background but it had just never come up in conversation during that first glorious glowing week of their friendship. They both knew they didn’t have much common ground. the conflict between their cultures was more than obvious. for the first wonderful week thay managed to enjoy the love they felt while entirely avoiding getting to know each other. The honeymoon was over. Christian looked into Julies eyes trying to hold on, to find the love there. Tears came to his eyes as he felt her spirit withdraw back into the terror of when they first met. “it’s over” he thought, despairing for a split second, and wondered how long it would be before she trusted him again enough to look into his eyes and see the love there, if indeed she ever would. He said nothing, looked at her with tears streaming down his face, trying to find the love in her eyes. “And you didn’t tell me?” she added, realizing he wasn’t going to answer the first question. She knew the answer. He answered with his eyes, as he often did. “You never asked, it never came up in conversation.” He should have told her. had deceived her, taken her love and attention though deceit. He felt ashamed. “It doesn’t matter.” He defended, feeling all the worse for his defense. “I love you, Julie.” She stared at him in confusion, saw unmistakable. love in his pleading eyes. This was not what she expected from a child of Hell. or was it? “A devil disguised as an angel of light,” she whispered, not realizing she said it out loud, just trying to put her thoughts together…but he heard, and hurt, felt utterly torn apart, and could not defend anymore. He lay his head down on his arms and cried. Sam, however, was never one to sit quiet. “What’s the matter Julie? what’s wrong with Hell, besides the name I mean. I’ve never even heard of Hell colony, so what’s the big deal?” “Most people haven’t Sam” said Christian turning his tear-dampened up at Sam from the table without rising “it’s very small and very isolated, mostly only known in the art world.” “And the Christian world, Christian” added Julie “And the Alien Studies world?” added Emily “So what Julie?” persisted Sam “Who cares where Christian came from? We like Christian, Christian’s a good guy, It doesn’t matter where he came from. He’s not a demon Julie, just he calls his home world Hell” Julie looked down at Christian’s tear-streaked face, and felt conflicted. She loved him. but still… Julie turned to Sam and started explaining like a professor giving a lecture “No, he’s not a demon. He’s Christian, the prince of Hell. Hell is a terrible place. A place in which Christianity is hated, where good is seen as evil and evil seen as good. Where all manor of wickedness is openly promoted and celebrated. A place proud to tolerate no Christians. A place where the word Christian is the word for enemy. Sam looked down at Christian, confused. “Enemy?” Julie nodded “That’s why they call it Hell. In hell colony they worship Satan with ritual orgies in public places, they have sex any time or place with anyone or anything male or female, young or old human or non-human”

Sam glanced at Christian, hoping he would jump in and correct Julie’s false beliefs about his home world, but Christian was listening silently, nodding at each practice she mentioned as if he agreed with her description to this point. “Marriage is forbidden, so they don’t have many children. Those they do have are shared indulgently with the whole colony in the same way they share everything…sexually” Julie had more to say, but Emily interrupted. “That doesn’t sound like the Christian we all know and love, or like what he’s told me about his home world.” Julie glared at Christian angrily “Satan is the father of lies, and only liars follow him. Their lies are masterful.” She said, bitter and suspicious “You were wearing his symbol when I first saw you, Christian. You agreed to un-make the symbol, but was it love or lies which lead to this action? Or lust perhaps?” Christian looked shocked at the mention of this word, seemed to pale even beyond his normal pallor. He said nothing, and the tears streamed down his face. Emily jumped to his defense. “No way, Julie, he took a vow of celibacy when he left Hell colony, to stay pure so he could still return home.” Sam looked at him critically, and stopped paying attention to the conversation. she poked him to get his attention, and he turned to her slowly. he didn’t just seem upset, he seemed sick. and he’s been acting that way even before the girls started aarguing about Hell. “Hey , you ok, honey, you don’t look so well?” she whispered. he shrugged. “It’s not what you wear on your chest that marks you a follower,” she went on, touching her cross “it’s what you carry in your heart, what you defend.” Christian listened wordlessly, tears still streaming down his face, wrapping his hand protectively around the heart he had made from the metal of his father’s ankh. “I don’t serve Satan, my ankh was never a mark of Satan it was a gift from my father.” “Nicodemus Strauss” Said Julie, as if to her this name seemed than Satan. “You are the prince of Hell. The son of Nicodemus. I should have seen it right away. it seems so obvious now. I have been blinded by Satan. God forgive me. But now I see it all. You look just like him, and you wore his sign. Not the sign of Satan, the sign of Nicodemus the Martyr of Hell. You are the anti-Christ: Christian. Julie fell silent, finally giving him a chance to try to explain. “Julie” still laying his head on his arms Christian held his hands out to her across the table, not touching her, eyes pleading. She didn’t move.

“I am the son of Nicodemus Strauss and I am the prince of Hell.” He said softly, not pausing for Sam’s exclamations “Christian really is a prince, Emily? Emily! Christian’s a prince!”

“I didn’t have what you’d call a normal childhood. But that doesn’t mean I worship Satan. I don’t even believe in Satan. I love you, Julie. I want to be with you. I’m just a man. My birth does not determine my heart and soul. My heart is given only to you now Julie. It’s you I defend and protect.” Julie answered softly, looking away confused “But that just the sort of lies Satan would guide you to say, isn’t it.” She saw his tears. She heard his sincerity. She felt his pain and felt his love as if it were her own. It was her own.She understood at that moment what he would have to nearly die to overcome, and what she would be called upon to help him face. The pieces of the puzzle of a lifetime…or two…came together then.

She rose as if to flee. He called after her “Julie!” but she would never run away from him again. She came to him, and hugged him tight, crying with him.

“Some of us are born to Destiny, and all the self-confidence and defiance in your Hell-born soul will not release you from this. You are born the anti-Christ, and it is my destiny to bring you to the truth of love.”

Then she kissed him, passionately. Caught by surprise, he returned her passion for an instant, feeling and not thinking, and then recoiled, horrified. Christian in his short life had sex with hundreds, maybe thousands of the people of Hell, but he had never kissed anyone from outside the colony. It was a part of the Health Code which they held more sacred than anything else. He had made his vows never to do so, but to remain a pure Child of Hell. Now he would forever be considered as an alien among his people.

He flashed to anger, feeling that by breaking his vow she had in a split second stolen from him his home, his life, his family, everything he had ever known or cared about. Everything except for her. Looking into her eyes he knew she understood even more than he did the significance of this. “Now you can Never go home” she said.

“I am not a Hell-born soul” he stated quietly and factually “I was born on blue destiny”

“So was I, Christian” said Julie, emphatically, fully realizing this for the first time.

“I was born on Blue Destiny the day your father died. My mother died in childbirth because of you, and you have made my life a living hell” He stared at her. They all did. She seemed to have taken leave of her senses, to be saying things which could not possibly be true. Yet it rang true, it was true, he knew it.

And then, as was the story if his life with Julie, the bell rang, signaling the end of lunch.

The girls all rushed away to their classes, leaving Christian alone in the quickly emptying lunchroom.

Numb and dazed he walked slowly out, heading nowhere, finding himself in the courtyard where Julie had gone the first day when she ran away in fear, where Julie waited before school the day she first declared her love for him, the place she sat with him yesterday, just enjoying each other’s presence. Julies place. No one in the whole school came here, except for Julie. Unless they came to be with her, as he did.

He sat on the bench near the tree where Julie often sat.

Culture shock engulfed him. Everything he saw heard saw and felt here was strange and alien. The sky the ground the trees the plants the sound the smells the feeling of the air, the pull of gravity the colors of the sky the flow of time, the light the people. Everything. It was not his world, not his home.

And Now I can Never go home.

Had he been a Christian, he might have said he felt like he had died and gone to Hell. But he was Christian, and Hell was home, now lost forever, torn away from him, that he might never see feel smell hear taste or touch it again.

He was dizzily alone in Julie’s courtyard, and the only comfort he had in all the world was the thought of her. He felt feverish and unsteady, and his head began to hurt. He touched the horn implants on his head and the flesh around them was warm and oozing, his hair damp from the drainage. He could feel it, he thought, spreading throughout his body, poisoning him. He wasn’t the prince of hell anymore, the anti-Christ, and his body was beginning to reject his crown of thorns. The Bluestone sockets he had chosen to have implanted in his head by Gaia, his mentor. They had represented his kingdom, which now was lost.

Reeling, unable to sit steady, he lay down on the ground face down and cried, gradually sinking deeper into fevered delirium and unconsciousness.

After school He is always waiting for Julie to say good by before she goes home, but today, he’s not there. Julie thinks he’s mad at her, she worries, but she also has a sick feeling that something is terribly wrong. she talks to Sam, and Sam mentions that he seemed ill at lunch time, not just upset and they all agree he wasn’t acting right before the argument. Daniel also mentions he wasn’t at a class they have together in the afternoon. Julie goes to look for him. He doesn’t understand his feelings because he has never been sick before at all because of the strict health laws of Hell colony. Julie goes there after school; she entered the courtyard and saw him lying on the ground by the tree, where she likes to sit. She thinks he is just waiting for her there , and she calls to him “Christian” as she approaches, no response. She becomes worried, running to where he lies. “Christian?” he doesn’t respond. He’s lying face down on the ground, she kneels beside him, touches him. He’s very feverish. “Christian, are you okay? Christian, listen to me. You’re sick, you have a fever. Christian?” he’s still not responding, she’s very worried. She tries to lift him, to roll him over so she can see his face. He moans, and tries to turn over. Kneeling beside him, she puts her arms around him, helping him turn over so she can see his face. “Hold me Julie” he moans as she holds him in her arms on her lap “the weight of this world has become too much for me. The gravity is pulling me down, I can’t do this anymore.” “It’s not the gravity, You’re just sick Christian, really sick. You have a fever a really bad one.”

‘Sick? No I never get sick Julie”

“You are sick now Christian, I’m gonna call for help.”

“No I’m fine I don’t need help, Julie, I’m okay, don’t call anyone, just help me up”

“Christian, no. you can’t even roll over, and you’re delirious. I can’t carry you out of here and you can’t walk out. and I’m calling for help.” “Ok Julie” he said leaning against her. “just hold me” and he passed out again in her arms. She got her phone from her back pack and called the emergency number, and then sat cradling him in her arms in the courtyard until the ambulance arrived. She rode with him to the hospital, and they sent her to a waiting room, where they told her nothing at all, because she wasn’t family. The school had called Shondra and she met them at the hospital. “You must be Julie. I’m Shondra, Christian’s mother. Thank you for bringing my son to the hospital. He has mentioned you. It seems he loves you very much.”

From her seat in the hospital waiting room, Julie looked up at the tall woman, dressed in a long brightly colored dress, with very long braided hair. Shondra, the Queen of Hell. She had heard the name often in her father’s drunken ramblings. Julie didn’t know what to say to her. “How is he? Will he be okay? Have they told you anything? They let me come here with him but they can’t telll me anything because I’m not his family” Shondra sat down near Julie “his fever is still high, they are giving him IV fluids, and medicine to bring the fever down, but he is not responding well. His skull is infected because the implants for his horns are being rejected. It’s very strange, he’s had them for two years. It’s unusual for rejection to begin after so much time. The implants are made of an unusual material, though, found only on Beta Blue, called Bluestone. Few people know anything of it, even on Beta Blue. It fused to the bones in an unusual manor, so the doctors don’t seem to know how to remove it. It’s interfering with his brain function in some way. Maybe I shouldn’t have brought him here. He would have been safe in Hell. The man who gave him the implants, Gaia, could have helped him. Maybe he never would have begun to reject it, without the stress of this alien environment.” “But then I never would have met him!” objected Julie “that would be terrible. There are more important things in life than safety.” Shondra smiled at her “True child, sometimes there are.” Then she thought of Emily. “Have you called Emily?” she asked “she comes to visit him almost every day, I’m sure she would want to know” “Oh,” Julie started suddenly “what time is it Shondra?’ I should have been home long ago. I told my Dad I was staying after to study, but that was hours ago. He’ll be so angry” As if summoned by her thought of her, right then her dad rushed into the waiting Room “Julie what are you doing? I was so worried about you! The school said you had come here with Christian Straus…Christian Strauss??? Do you have any idea who he is? “ 'Yes, daddy, he’s the prince of Hell, and he’s my boy friend and he loves me…I’m not sure I could say the same for you” her father fell silent, stunned gaping. He wasn’t sure whether she meant she didn’t know who her father, or her father didn’t love her. Either way, he was not used to Julie standing up to him or talking back to him this way, and both of thus things rang true enough to cut deeply. “Christian was born on Blue Destiny, just as I was, right daddy?”

“What are you talking about? Who told you this?”

“You did, daddy, when you were drunk. I didn’t realize, I didn’t understand until today, at lunch, when Christian was talking about his home world.” “David Hanson” Shandra stood up behind Julie suddenly “you are wanted by the entire universe, for the murder of my husband 18 years ago. And here you are, at the hospital where my son is very ill. Shall I call the authorities?” He feel to his knees, begging “No Shondra, please don’t tell anyone, I don’t ask you to forgive me, I deserve your hatred, your reproach your condemnation, I don’t ask forgiveness, it would be too much to ask. anything you might do, I deserve it, but don’t turn me in yet. Please just let me raise my daughter before you seek vengeance for the terrible evil I have done. It wasn’t like they said, Shondra, it wasn’t like that at all. I was there when they planned his murder, and I tried to stop them, I tried to save him. but I couldn’t save him Shondra, I couldn’t And while I was out trying to save Nicodemus, my wife was giving birth to Julie, and she died in childbirth. She died because I was out trying to save the world trying to do what was right, trying to fix my mistakes; and because we couldn’t get medical technology she needed, because we were at war with the people who had it, and I was leading that war. she died, because I wasn’t good enough. But I promised her, and I promised God that I would take Julie away from Blue Destiny, away from all that, let her grow up without all that, not under the shadow of the evil of Blue Destiny. Please Shondra, Your husband died because of me, and my people turned against me because I tried to save him. I shall die to avenge his death, but let me raise my daughter first, before I die, please. Only two more years.” Shondra shook her head in disbelief and confusion. “I forgive you. David, I forgave you long ago. You had your reasons; you were trying to do what was right. It was stupid and misguided, not unforgivable. The past is over, let it be over. My son is very ill, David, he needs me now. And he needs Julie too. If you feel the need to avenge yourself, do it later, I want no part of it, and surely this is not the time.” “Christian. Can I see him? Please? I want to apologize.” He’s very sick, David. He’s not even awake, or lucid. The Bluestone in his implants is interfereing with his brain function, and they don’t know how to remove it safely. The only expert on this lives on Hell, and Christian is too ill for extended space travel. And Gaia won’t leave Hell for anything. He’s made a vow never to leave. “Bluestone? He has bluestone implants, made by Gaia? No wonder he’s ill Shondra. I can’t imagine how he could have survived this long away from hell with bluestone implants made by Gaia.” “What do you mean? What do you know about bluestone implants?” “We did espionage during the war, we learned all about the research that was going on. It was the work of Nicodemus and Gaia that concern us most. They were developing technology they could implant in others or inject in others using the Bluestone to control people. That’s why we feared them, that’s why our leaders decided they had to be stopped. We thought Nicodemus’s plan to unit with us was really a plan to take over, get there Bluestone into us and control us. We thought that was why they were offering to share medical technology. Medical technology that could have saved my wife.” He paused for a moment to regain his composure. (Emily arrives with bishop stone sometime before this point? –they walk in while he is ranting and he doesn’t notice them. “You know about the bluestone? Can you help Christian?” asked Julie

“No honey, I only know what it does, not how to work with it” “then why do you think it would make him sick like this? You said you thought it would make him sick sooner…why?”

‘ it sends messages to the person’s brain somehow. Brainwaves are captured within the metal when it is forged. I don’t know how” “I know something of how it is forged’ Emily spoke up. “Christian explained

it to me when he re-cast the necklace. He said his father did something special in the forging when he made the ankh, but he didn’t know how, so he used the simpler process” Julie was pale. “The necklace really was evil” she said. Looking at Emily and then her father. Would reforging have stopped it from controlling him?” “We can’t know.” said David “I doubt the necklace was evil. The necklace was forged by Nicodemus, and he was a good man, and a great man” Emily smiled “that’s exactly what Christian said the day I met him, that his father was a great man, and a good man.”

David went on ‘Nicodemus was not trying to control people. He understood the bluestone, and only used it for good, for health, to help people, to help us find peace. He forged that necklace for you Christian, and it represented, as did you, the unity of our people, and peace. Whatever it is, I’m sure it isn’t evil” ‘’it’s a beautiful heart that says “Christian loves Julie”

It’s a heart now, and it says Christian loves Julie on it now, so if recasting changed it, all it did was put into it all his love for Julie” I don’t know. But I know the sickness will not pass easily, and maybe not at all if the implants can’t be removed. Maybe his love for Julie is what kept him going for so long before the trouble started” said David But he seemed fine till today at lunch, and then we talked about Hell, and I realized that I must have been born on blue destiny too. And I kissed him. He seemed very upset about the kiss, tho I know he loved me. It seemed a strange reaction” said Julie “you made him break his vow” Shondra explained “Christian didn’t take the vow to never leave, like Gaia took. He wasn’t old enough to take that vow yet. But we all took a vow to never exchainge bodily fluids with anyone outside the colony. It was part of our health program, to keep from bringing diseases into the colony. If Gaia had something in the programming of the implants about that, breaking his vow could have set off the reaction with the implants, Julie” “It was my fault?” she thought “did this happen to Christian because of me?” “You are not accountable for what he failed to tell you, Julie” Shondra answered her fears “that choice was his alone” [??????] “But once the vow is broken, it can’t be unbroken. He would have to go through the purification before he could return to Hell” “Please let me talk to him” asked Julie’s father. “Maybe it will help” (They explain to the drs that “Joe Davidson” is from a planet where the stone was used, and knows a little about it. He is given permission to see Christian) Julie goes with him (they have explained the nature of the stone, and have decided to try giving him the necklace he cast with Julies name, that his father made him, so see if it will help, since they don’t know what else will help. Drs are monitoring his brain waves and such. Julie goes in first, and gives him the Necklace. He’s lying in a bed, with IVs in him and they have tied his hair back from around the implants, and shaved the area around it, and his head is bandaged, and they have inserted drainage tubes in his skull to reduce the fluid around the implants. He is loosely restrained to prevent him from pulling out the tubes in his delirium. Julie approaches silently, and looks down at him, his expression is troubled. She sits beside him on the bed. She wants to put the necklace on him, but she can’t there are drains connected to his head. She holds it between her hands and it feels warm, she almost imagines she can feel his heart beat. “Christian?”

She calls his name questioningly, lovingly and he smiles, his countenance changes from total stress to love and peace. Physically, it is a tiny smile, one that you might not notice, the smile that Christian give to only her. She leans over and touches his face with her left hand, holding the necklace in the right. He turns his head a little, he can only turn a little and opens his eyes. “Julie” his voice is barely a whisper “I love you”

“I know” she said, holding up the necklace for him to see, ‘Christian Loves Julie” she read from his heart, then placing it into his hand, she added “Julie loves Christian too” and kissed his lips softly, gently. He held the heart in his closed hand against his chest, as he did when he was wearing it. She placed both of her hands over his. “Christian” she said looking in his eyes. For a moment she couldn’t say anything more. Nothing seemed to matter but the love they shared. But she knew that for this love to survive, for Christian, her love, to survive, they needed answers quickly, so she tore herself away from her emotions, and faced the reality of the situation. “Bluestone in your implants is rejecting you because you broke your vow, and I can’t take back that kiss” she whispered. “Gaia coded it to control you. You know how to cast the Bluestone; do can you code it, Christian?” “No I didn’t know. My father didn’t teach me that. I have heard of it. I thought it died with him” she felt his fist tighten under her hands around the heart. “Life and death walk hand in hand” he said. “My father coded this, didn’t leave a key. “I recast it, but I still feel him in it.” He looked at her. “Some things don’t burn in fire. But I feel you in it too, Julie. So maybe I coded. Maybe our love coded it. I don’t know how.” The Nurse came in, smiling “his brainwaves have improved; but his fever is still too high, and still not responding to the medication. I think you are good for him, honey. Sometimes love is the best medicine” “Mr. Davidson is still waiting to talk to him. He’s doing okay with you right now, so I think its okay to try it. I suggest you stay with him, though, while they talk, ok, honey?” “who’s Mr. Davidson?” asked Christian

“my father” responded Julie “he lived on Blue Destiny, and told us about the bluestone coding” Joe entered, haltingly, slowly. Julie glared at him, and then not wanting her feelings about her father to stress Christian, she turned back to Christian and focused only on his face, his warmth(more than usual cause of the fever), his presence, his love. Joe wanted to kneel before him, as he had done to Shondra. “No Dad, he can’t turn his head, you have to stand” Julie told him. He stood by Christian’s bed, by Julie his daughter. “Christian Strauss” he began “son of Nicodemus. Your father was a great man, and a good man. I’m sorry he died” tears rolled down his face, and he paused to catch his breath “I’m sorry I couldn’t save him. Because of my blindness, my stupidity, my refusal to admit we could be wrong. Because of my false accusations against him and my failure, he died at the hands of Gaia. And I am wanted for his murder. I would gladly have died in his place. I would have died in vengeance of his death, but I had to raise Julie. Her mother died in childbirth, because we didn’t have access to the medicine we needed. Because we had set ourselves apart from your people. Julie lived, a miracle from God to make me go on living, that I must suffer the guilt of my transgressions for all these years. A curse…” Christian reached out and grabbed David’s hand, pulling him closer, looking him directly in the eyes, a menacing stare. “Julie was never a curse, David Hanson. Never.” He said, with a tone of perfect disrespect “Your greatest sin is that you felt that way. Look how much you have both suffered because if this. I hated you for years when I was young, David Hanson. I wanted to kill you for what you took from me. Life and death walk hand in hand. My father’s death made me everything I am.” His voice gradually softened “But I forgive you now. Julie is a gift, from you to me. She is your restitution for my father’s death. Avenge his death with life. It is forgiven.” Christian released the old mans hand, and Joe Davidson aka David Hanson sank to his knees sobbing, feeling the truth in Christian’s words. Christian lay back; eyes closed “Gaia, on the other hand, I cannot forgive. Gaia will pay for what he did to my father, and for what he did to me” His tone was hateful. Julie was surprised. This didn’t sound like Christian at all. “Christian NO, vengeance is not the answer.” And then she realized what might be happening…Gaia, in the bluestone implants, was influenced his thoughts. Gaia, who killed Nicodemus and let David Hanson-- her father-- take the blame for 17 years. Gaia, who made her father so depressed that he became a drunk and treated her harshly, and considered her a curse. Gaia, who made her father become the man she hated. “Christian! Cast him out, those are not your thoughts. Christian!!” She held his hand in both hers; the heart held between their palms. She pressed it tightly into his palm, hoping her love would reach him, hoping his father would reach him. She kissed him. He screamed with pain, and struggled against the restraints. “Gaia, I will kill you!!” he screamed. The Nurse came in “his brainwaves are unstable again, you have to leave” Joe stood up, and walked out silently, still crying. Julie was not going to give up that easy. She knew Christian needed her more than medical care. “Christian look at me!!” she yelled, turning his face to her. He closed his eyes. She slapped him, trying to force him to face her. “Christian. I love you. You have to stop him, not seek revenge. Your death is no vengeance. He won’t miss you at all, but I will. Fight his evil, stay with me! He killed your father, don’t let him kill you too” As the nurse pulled her away, she saw Christian lay back, calm again. She reached for him but couldn’t reach him. He opened his eyes, just barely, touched her eyes with his and held the heart in his hands. “Thank you” he whispered inaudibly. She knew he would be okay for now. When Julie got back to the waiting room, Emily and Bishop Stone were there. She hugged Shondra. “Thank you for letting us talk to him Shondra. I know this must be hard for you. You haven’t seen him much, and you’re his mom, his family.” “Its okay child, he’ll always be my son, and I love him, but family is different for us on Hell. I set him free long ago. He’s more yours than mine now, and he needed you, didn’t he?”

Julie couldn’t disagree “he needed me.”

ack need some sort of a transition for bishop stone to give the blessing Once it is agreed that Bishop Stone will give the blessing, he goes and quickly gets another man from the hospital who is a priesthood holder, and they get permission because the other man is the doctor who is treating Christian. Bishop Stone pronounces the blessing. Julie and Shondra and Emily are all invited to go into the room for the blessing, because Christian asks them to be allowed. After establishing that Christian has no middle name, they lay their hands on his bandaged head and begin the blessing, the Doctor anoints him with the oil, and then bishop gives the blessing: “Christian Strauss” says the bishop “in the name of Jesus Christ and through the power of the melchezidec priesthood which I hold, I lay my hands upon your head and I give you this blessing for the healing of the sick and afflicted” (I need to find out the official words for that) Christian, I bless you at this time with peace, and comfort, and that you shall be protected from those who might wish to control you for unrighteous causes. You were born to trials, and will soon face many more and harder challenges. You were born to bring peace and unity to your people, but you will bring more strife before the end. Your journey will take you many places. I bless you at this time that those who care for you will be directed to the resources required for your care; that you will be freed from your current affliction, but realize all choices have their costs and benefits. You have grown to recognize what is good and true. Through the power of the home world you shall also be saved, though not in the way you imagine. Events of your life have been directed by others. Now you have chosen your own path. I bless you that you will be surrounded by those who truly love you, they will help you heal, and you will bear one another’s burdens that they may be light. Never forget that your Heavenly Father loves you and is guiding your destiny. He forgives all sins you have committed due to misunderstandings. He knows what we cannot see, and has the power to make everything right no matter how impossible it may seem. I bless you that you will live, and find a home.

(This will need to be reworded as I pin down what happens following this) After the blessing, Christian opened his eyes and smiled “you are a good man, like your son Daniel. Thank you Bishop Stone. You’ll have to teach me all about your “Heavenly Father” sometime. But not tonight” “our heavenly father” Bishop stone shook Christian’s hand ”I’d be honored” Dr Blankenship Looked at Christian’s monitors and nodded, looking pleased. “His fever is finally coming down a little, and his brainwaves are much more stable now. I don’t know much about this condition, but it does seem that being surrounded by friends and family helps keep him stable, so I will allow him to have guests, but only one at a time, and you need not be talking about emotionally charged issues. What happened earlier should not be repeated, understand, young lady? He looked at Julie when he said this. “Keep him calm.”

“Yes, sir” replied Julie “Dr Blankenship” said Emily “I started thinking, when Bishop Stone mentioned Home World, I thought maybe my father can help; maybe he knows something about this Bluestone. Maybe he knows how to remove it. There is a similar material that comes from Home World. called Living stone, He works with it and knows more about it than anyone else. Maybe he could use it to replace the bluestone. Dad and Sherman could come up in the air car to look at him. I can call him if you like?”

“You are right Emily; perhaps Dr Hawthorn would be a good resource to call in. I didn’t think of him, since he doesn’t work with humans much, but this does sound like a case for an alien technologist. I’ll call him. Thank you.” And he left quickly to make the call. later that night, Drs Hawthorn and Hawthorn come to see Christian. They are able to remove the implants by replacing the Bluestone with Living stone, and using some other Home World technology to do it, and perhaps some Paragangian technology as well [the existence of Paragangian technology complicates this story a bit, I need to seet the limits on their access to Paragangain technology] Dr Hawthorn does it in exchange for getting to keep the bluestone implants to study them. Christian is unconscious for several days after the operation.

It is agreed that he is better off not being alone. Julie takes the first watch and sits with him, holding him as she did in the courtyard. His fever goes up and down and the infection in his body continues.

Part 11 (Wednesday before break)[]

Sherman and Dr Hawthorn come to help Christian. They figure out they can remove the bluestone, and replace it with living stone. Dr Hawthorn agrees to do this on the condition that he gets to keep the bluestone implants. Part 12 Dinner at Stones

Sherman and Emily have dinner with the Stones, and Sherman spends the night at their house. Sherman expresses his concerns to Daniel about his father’s obsession with the Leviathan, etc. Sherman also has a private conversation with Sam about how he wants to get out of the Alien biology thing and just become a pediatrician and have a family.

Part 13 Dr Hawthorn and Gaia[]

Dr hawthorn goes back to his lab to get the living stone, more stuff about the lab and Leviathan, and his increasing obsession, first contact with Gaia, maybe, though some Paragangian communication technology. Gaia tells him not to tell Christian, gives him instructions on how to remove the bluestone. (after the operation Christian will not be entirely healed, but will seem to be normal again…his body will be healed…Emily will be able to overcome the connection to Gaia because of the living stone used to replace the bluestone. Some bluestone left in his skull will have to be removed by unchosen when he arrives on Home World…this is why they chide him about not having listened to the blessing when it said he would be healed by the power of HomeWorld. Part 14

Christian and Julie etc waiting for the operation nearly dying, insane behaviour, mood swings, etc. they talk about Part 15 They talk about what happened on Blue destiny?

Part 16 (Thursday before break)[]

The operation