Authors: B. Roman
David unties the rope of the dinghy from its moorings in the estuary, steps in and rows a few hundred yards out into the calm ocean. He opens his laptop and boots it up, and places the Wind Rose compass on the seat beside him. If he can recreate the Star of David grid pattern in his computer, he just might be able to conjure up the clipper ship Moon Singer, the way he did before.
On that first day of summer more than a year ago David had used his prized crystal collection to form the sacred Star of David grid, placing the Singer crystal at the apex of the dominant triangle. Back then, he didn't have a clue as to what he was doing. It was just a fun experiment. He had used a twig to draw a triangle in the sand, then an inverted triangle over that one, then laid the crystals strategically on the wet sand to make the six-pointed Star of David energy formation. He hadn't known then that the double pyramid design was extremely powerful for elevating one's consciousness, and for facilitating inter-dimensional journeying.
His sister was with him that day, watching with fascination from her wheelchair. She worried that he might get hurt from the experiment, especially since an electrical storm was brewing. But that's just what David was hoping for, a bolt of lightning to strike the crystals and energize them to do something amazing.
And when the lightening finally did strike the Singer, the little crystal acted as a conduit and transmitted its power to each and every other crystal in the grid. The force was so potent that it knocked David unconscious. When he awoke, Sally was gone, her wheelchair empty. And before his eyes, floating majestically on the water, was the mystical clipper ship, Moon Singer, waiting to transport David away on his first adventure: to find his sister Sally.
But today, David must rely on technology to recreate the experiment. Today, there is no storm brewing, and no Singer crystal, the amazing artifact that can sing the mysteries of the universe and confer on its owner extraordinary powers of communication, if its owner truly believes.
Meticulously, David draws the Star of David pattern on the computer screen. On each point he reconstructs the geometric facets and planes of each of the crystals he used in his original experiment. Then, ever so painstakingly, David constructs the complex jigsaw arrangement of atoms that comprises the Singer, the miniature replica of the great ship Moon Singer.
“Now,” he directs himself, bracing for the impact, “I will carefully place the Singer at the apex of the triangle. Maybe, just maybe it will work.”
But it doesn't. Absolutely nothing happens. Not a shimmer of light, not a quiver of movement. The illustration is dormant on the screen. The Wind Rose compass needle remains still.
“Rats! How can I do this? What do I need to make a connection?”
David begins entering programming codes, any numeric combination he can think of that relates to the geometric pattern that he created on the screen. As he does so, the screen blinks off, then on, then off again.
Panicked, David reboots the laptop hoping he hasn't lost his work. A blue screen appears, then a white screen, and then a vision that shocks David to his core.
“Holy cow - Holy cow!”
“Are you still using that juvenile expression, my dear David?” the holographic vision speaks to him. “Well, I suppose it's better than some of the words you young people use today.”
David is speechless. His mouth hangs open in astonishment at the familiar sight of the capricious gypsy fortune teller.
“Come now, David. No words of welcome for an old friend? You do remember me, don't you?”
How well he remembers the delightful woman who cajoled him onto the Moon Singer the first time, to the Island of Darkness and his encounter with Ishtar and the beautiful Princess Saliana.
“Dorinda! My God. I can't believe it's you. And I can't believe I can hear you.”
“Why are you surprised? You invoked me before and you heard me then. You still have the power.”
“Yes, but I don't have the Singer. I didn't think I could ever hear again without it.”
“It's just like riding a bike,” she says, with that perpetual twinkle in her eyes. “Once you learn, you never forget how.”
“I seem to have forgotten everything, Dorinda. My life is a shambles.”
“This is no time for a pity party,” she chides him, amiably. “You have more important things to do.”
“Like getting the Singer back, and finding the Rose Crystal.”
“I almost had the Singer back the other day, but it washed out to sea before I could grab it. And the Rose Crystal was given away accidentally by my father. I don't know where to begin to look for it.”
“Yes you do. Or you will. Once you go back to the Source, all things will be clear to you.”
David chuckles. “Another of your cryptic clues. I think you have a file drawer full of them. Just what is the
, Dorinda? I've been trying to figure that out.”
“David, think. Didn't you come here today to summon the Moon Singer?”
“And you know the Moon Singer takes you on a journey to where you find solutions to your problems.”
“But why do I always have to go somewhere else to solve my problems,” David protests, “make some quantum leap into a fantasy dimension? My dad already thinks I'm crazy for trying to explain what I've been through, and Sally hardly believes anything I say anymore. I haven't accomplished much on my two trips.”
“But you did, David. You accomplished a great deal. But you know that your journeys are not over. Your dissatisfaction demonstrates that you are still seeking answers to life's mysterious questions, as well as the solutions to mundane problems. Remember what you accomplished on the Island of Darkness and on Coronadus? These were monumental successes.”
“But then I had a mission. When I sailed on the Moon Singer the first time it was to find Sally, to save her life. And when I went to Coronadus it was to communicate with my mother, to understand why she had to die. But this time I have no reason, no mission to accomplish.”
“Your mission will reveal itself in a short time, David. Be available to it when it comes. I'll only say that, this time, it's more personal and more imperative than the others.”
With that, the hologram of Dorinda disappears abruptly. In its place is the Star of David crystal diagram. A message box pops up asking, “Do you want to save this file?” David clicks on “yes” and the screen goes black.
The Wind Rose needle moves slowly a few degrees in a clockwise direction, then moves no more. David knows the Moon Singer is near, but he doesn't know why he wants her to come for him.
“More personal and more imperative than I can imagine,” he repeats Dorinda's clue. “What could be more personal than finding Sally or seeing my mother again?”
David's stomach flutters with anxiety and anticipation
knowing it is crucial that he find the Singer and the Rose Crystal for personal reasons; but he has yet to fully comprehend that by reuniting them with the Wind Rose - aligning the three sacred artifacts that have been coveted for centuries - phenomenal changes will occur in the world, in the present, and in the future.
He hopes Dorinda is right, that his newest mission will reveal itself very soon.
Dr. Ramirez works feverishly on his keyboards at the observatory lab, despite a pounding headache. The music he composes is lavish with dissonant chords in the Key of F#dim, setting into motion the masculine and feminine polarities of harmony, and the positive and negative forces of nature. Once he has a composition he feels achieves his objectives, he will load it into his computer and hook it up to the weather satellites.
First, he will impact Port Avalon, then jolt the USA, and then shock and terrorize the entire world.
He alone will know how to stop the catastrophes that will soon ravish the earth because he created them. He will be famous for his discovery. People around the globe will offer him large sums of money, all the riches in their national coffers, to reveal the secret codes to them that will stop the disasters. No one will ever know that he is the creator of the destructive harmonics; they will only know him as their savior.
Outside, the twilight sky begins to darken as afternoon becomes night. Needing a break, Ramirez engages the observatory's massive telescope, hoping to catch a glimpse of the shimmering, cloud-shaped light in the heavens that he had seen several times before. When at last the optical instrument brings the light into focus, Ramirez is ecstatic.
“It's got to be a lightship from some other planet! They hear the din, the chaos, and soon they'll swoop down on the earth and destroy all those who have committed crimes against music and humanity. But when they realize that I have the codes, they will allow me to live. Yes, they will need me. Together we will do great things and rule the galaxy!”
Ramirez' mad ranting is cut short by a shooting pain that surges through his head. He stumbles backward onto the swivel chair at his computer station, almost sliding off. The flashes of light and blurred vision are more severe than anything he has ever experienced before. He must get that CT scan that the doctor insists he have.
But as the pain subsides, the urgency Ramirez feels also lessens, and he returns to his primary task, his music. He ejects the disk from the keyboard's CD drive and loads it into his PC tower. With a few keystrokes Ramirez creates a hard drive file for the new composition and begins to implement his insane scheme.
Sally Nickerson is a junior at Port Avalon High School, a popular and active girl despite her infirmity. She aspires to become an instructor of therapeutic dance and is already working on a method to teach disabled people how to move gracefully and meaningfully to music. This evening her group of experimental students is meeting in the gymnasium. The floor here is spacious and allows freer movement for the class without the possibility of injury.
As the students manipulate their crutches, canes and wheelchairs in tempo to the lovely waltz, “Fascination,” Sally is reminded of David's birthday celebration at Lighthouse Point Restaurant when she and her brother took to the dance floor. It was only her imagination, her wishful thinking, she knows, but that night she did throw away her crutches and dance free and light as a ballerina.
How Sally adores her brother. If it hadn't been for his fearless experiments with his crystals she would still be wheelchair bound. It was an accident that put her there, a horrible car crash that killed her mother, crippled Sally, and nearly destroyed her father with guilt. But it was also an “accident of fate” that allowed her to walk normally, if only for a short time. Or was it a mystical miracle?
Did she really relapse because Isaac inadvertently gave away the Rose Crystal pendant that healed her? Or was she herself just losing faith? Maybe it was her fault for not believing in David and his powers anymore. Maybe she brought the relapse on herself and caused the breech between her and her brother. Whatever the reason, Sally knows she must get on with her life and accept things as they are. She hopes David can do the same.
“Speaking of my brother,” Sally says to herself, checking her watch, “he should be here to pick me up any minute. Okay everyone,” she addresses the students, “class is over for tonight. Thank you for coming. See you next week.”
The students, trailed by Sally, file out of the gymnasium, chattering excitedly about the progress they made that evening. But loud voices heard at the far end of the corridor startle everyone and they stop to look and listen.
It sounds at first like an argument, then a shouting match, and then turns into a real ruckus. One group of students, all natives of Port Avalon, harass a group of immigrant students who were attending an evening class. At first the transient boys and girls try to ignore the insults, but shoving begins, then pushing. Punches are thrown and an all-out brawl ensues.
Sally guides her dance class away from the fight and out the door to the main stairs. Terrified and angry parents who came to pick up their kids descend upon the school. Police cars, with sirens blaring and lights flashing, screech to a halt at the entrance. Armed officers race up the stairs to stop the fight.
Fortunately, all of Sally's students are safely escorted down the handicap ramp to their parents' or friends' cars. David pulls up and parks hastily in a slot nearby. He dashes up to the top of the stairs and to Sally's side.
“Holy cow, Sally. What's going on?”
“I don't know, David. This argument broke out and turned into a serious brawl. It's awful. There's never been anything like this at school, ever.”
“Well, let's get you out of here and safely home.”
Without warning, a deep and foreboding rumble is heard beneath the ground. Like waves rocking a boat, the ground shifts back and forth, moving the stairs in an undulating motion. The cement steps crack and separate. Sally screams as she loses her footing and tumbles down, hitting every one of the 15 rock hard crevices on her descent.
“Sally!” David yells while trying to maintain his own balance. He stumbles down a few steps but manages to keep upright. When the earth is finally still, David rushes down to Sally's motionless body. She has bruises and blood all over her face.
“Sally. Sally! Oh, no. Oh, God no! She can't be.”
Sally moans and David gasps for air, relieved she is still alive. “Call 911,” he yells. “Anybody! Please help! Please!”
* * *
“This is incomprehensible, just incomprehensible.” Isaac rocks back and forth in the ER waiting room chair, tears of despair streaking down his face.
“Isaac,” Janice comforts him, “we can be thankful that she's still alive.”
“Alive? She's in a coma. She may never wake up, let alone walk again if she does wake up,” Isaac sobs. “It's so unfair. After all she's been through.”
David sits sullenly on the couch. Whatever his father feels, he feels it ten times more. He should have been able to hold onto her, should have protected her.
It should be me lying there, not Sally. Not my sister.
Of course, he knows intellectually that he didn't cause the earth to tremor and the steps to shake apart so that Sally would fall. But an earthquake in Port Avalon is unheard of. The city is not on any fault line. So, what happened? Is it a warning, a harbinger of what will come if David keeps on dabbling in crystal power or esoteric computer programs? Or is it happening because he
the Singer and Rose Crystals, and cannot fathom how to summon their powers again?
David's heart is so heavy he doesn't think he can bear the weight of it. The pit of his stomach is a knot of regret, sadness, anger and nausea. There is nothing he can do at the hospital, so he leaves and walks out into the night, alone.
No one will miss me anyway. I'm to blame for Sally's condition. Everything that has happened since last summer is my fault. I know Dad blames me. He doesn't say it, but I can tell when he looks at me. He expected more from me, and I failed.