Jump to content
    paren01
  • Author
  • 2,369 Words
  • 1,030 Views
  • 18 Comments
Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

The Earliest Shrine - 8. Chapter 8

**
The two boys snugged their Jackets the best they could and slogged down the path. After a mile or two, James stopped dead in his tracks.

"There it is!"

"What, James?" asked Winston.

"It's the Pleiades Star Cluster!"

Winston looked to where James was pointing. The volcanically formed limestone cliffs above them mimicked the 'Pleiades Star Cluster' depiction on the Nebra and Augsburg discs and the river map on the boulder at the Goseck Circle precisely. This had to be it!

The boys made their way up a steep path toward the rock formation. Halfway up the cliff, James turned to Winston and, in his now eerily familiar toneless voice, said.

"Winston, they're here, and they want to meet you too."
**
The boys continued up the path, eventually detouring along a narrow ledge leading to a bluff just below the limestone star cluster. The bluff was thirty feet wide and about fifteen feet deep. Winston and James scoured the face of the cliff for an opening. There was nothing there but the limestone rock.

James said, "Winston, let me try something."

James stood, facing the cliff, and appeared to concentrate. Winston was alarmed to see James' expression go blank. He knew, through experience, that James had entered into one of his trance states. After thirty seconds, James walked to the far side of the bluff and said.

"They blend into the cliff and aren't easily visible, but there are steps here."

Winston joined James, and indeed, steps were winding around the far side of the bluff.

"That was different. What happened to you just now?" asked Winston.

"I went into the trance on purpose. I've never done that before. It's also much stronger here," said James. "Let's go."

They couldn't see where the stairs led, but 'there was no stopping now.'

James led, and the teens made their way up the narrow steps, hugging the cliff.

They came to an opening in the rock face in a short distance. The southern sun was illuminating the entrance. This cave was similar in dimensions to the Hohlenstein-Stadel, which they had recently visited. It appeared undisturbed for eons.

There were artifacts all over. They soon concluded that this must have been a ceremonial space, a place of rituals. A wealth of totems was displayed in caches in the cave walls, including figurines of animals, Venus statues, and, yes, a collection of Stone Age phalluses. Most surprising of all were the cave paintings. Cave paintings, particularly Paleolithic cave paintings, had been considered nonexistent in Germany until now.

"Winston! Help me. Shine your phone on this section of the wall."

A fantastic image emerged with both of their phones illuminating the wall section. Much of the imagery was the same as a combination of the Nebra Sky Disk and the Augsburg Disk, only created by a much more ancient hand. Additional script was present. James intently studied the symbols.

"Winston, these are the instructions of the first of our ancestors after returning to this land over a hundred thousand years ago." Looking into Winston's eyes and speaking in amazement, he said, "This tells us where the source is. It is very close. We must go there now. They are waiting for us, Winston! All of them are waiting!"

Winston trusted James, yet he was paralyzed with fear and wonder. He knew his life would never be the same again. Whatever was to come, he and James would confront it together.

"Let's return to the bluff. I'll follow you," said James.

The intensity of the storm had increased. It was raining and blowing fiercely. Winston carefully descended the narrow steps, with James following ten to twenty feet behind.

James rounded the corner of the bluff to the sounds of a struggle and shouting. Boris grappled with Winston while shouting, "What did you find? What did you find?! This should be my discovery, not some fucking kids."

It was evident that Winston was trying to escape the stronger man but was losing ground. The two struggled close to the bluff's edge when Winston lost his footing and plunged off the cliff as if in slow motion.

James shouted, "NOOOOOOOOOO!" as Winston fell.

Boris seemed to come to his senses, looked at James with a panicky expression, and hurriedly shimmied along the ledge and back to the path leading to the valley floor.

James rushed to the cliff ledge, crawled to the edge, and peered down. He could make out Winston's broken, lifeless body among the rocks over a hundred feet below.

James was in shock and lay in the pounding rain for a while, wishing that what he just saw wasn't real. In a daze, he retrieved his phone from his jacket pocket and called Amelia.

"This is Amelia. Is that you, James?"

"Something terrible happened," he began to cry. "Winston is dead."

"What?! What?! What are you saying?!"

"He … he was wrestling with Dr. Wagner and fell off a cliff." James sobbed.

"I'll call for help. Where are you?"

After a few tries, James gave Amelia his GPS coordinates and a description of the path leading to his location.
Amelia was shaken. She called her parents. They were distraught. They relayed that they would notify the authorities, let the Kunster's know what was happening, and be there as soon as possible.

Benjamin anxiously listened to Amelia's conversation and had a good idea of recent events.

"We must go to James and Winston,” said Benjamin.

"I'm ready. Let's hurry,” replied Amelia.

She and Benjamin rushed to find James, using the GPS coordinates provided to Amelia earlier. The storm was severe, and they found themselves leaning into the wind to make progress.

Tired and wet, they found the path and went to the narrow ledge leading to the bluff. There, they found a nearly comatose teen huddled against the cliff in the fetal position.

Benjamin and Amelia approached, knelt beside him, and drew him into a three-way embrace.

The storm relented, and after a short time, the teens spoke to each other.

"Where is Winston, James?" asked Benjamin

James pointed to the edge.

Benjamin crawled out to the ledge and looked down. "I don't see him."

James stood and ran to the edge, knelt, and peered below. "Maybe he was only injured, and he crawled away." The drop was over a hundred feet, and they knew no one could survive that fall. But where was his body?

"We've got to get down there," shouted James. "Winston needs us!"

There was no obvious path to the cliff below.

"James, Benjamin, what do we do?" asked Amelia.

"I don't know. If we had a rope, we could lower one of us,” said Benjamin.

"James? … James?"

James stood motionless. He turned to face them and said, "Follow me."

They worked their way along the narrow ledge to the pathway. Instead of following the path downward to the valley floor, James led them uphill to a hardly visible adjoining trail. At this point, they were bushwhacking across boulders and through shrubs. They went downhill hundreds of feet until they reached a crevasse plunging hundreds of feet. The four could make out a small patch of rock across an eight-foot gap. It wasn't apparent whether the rock was part of a path leading around the rock face or ended abruptly. On this side of the chasm, the teens would have a running start to make the jump. The return was less certain.

"I'm going to go for it," said James.

"Let me, James,” offered Benjamin. "I made 'California States' middle school finals in the long jump last term. You know I can jump further than you."

"It's too dangerous, little brother," James said as he removed his jacket in preparation for the jump.

Before James could react, Benjamin ran and launched himself across the gap in the blink of an eye, landing gracefully on the other side.

"What do you see?" asked Amelia.

"The path leads around the cliff and downhill. I think I can see the bluff where Winston fell. It's passable."

When the four of them worked their way to the rocky outcropping, the body was gone. Maybe Winston is alive!

Behind them was a hardly visible slit in the rocks. James crawls in, shouting Winston's name. Amelia and Benjamin followed close behind.

The low, narrow opening expanded into a gigantic cavern. They all held their phones for illumination until Amelia realized the cavern itself had some sort of bio-luminescent property, and the light from the phones was unnecessary.

Multi-colored giant stalactites hanging from the cave roof framed the space's center.

And there, lying on the ground, was Winston.

James dashed to his body, embraced and kissed him.

Winston opened his eyes and smiled.

"Are you ok?" asked James.

Looking intently into James eyes Winston said, "I remember falling and thinking, 'I never told James that I love him.'" They kissed again.

"And then I woke up here. I'm perfectly fine. Not even a scratch."

"Look, James!" said Winston, sitting up and scanning around them.

They were surrounded by Paleolithic statues, much like the lion-man statue they viewed in Ulm, only these statues were larger than life-size. Besides the lion-man, there was a powerful-looking creature with the head and chest of an Aurochs (extinct ox) and another larger statue with the head and tusks of a mammoth. Finally, there was a robust naked man with an erect penis and a Venus statue with oversized breasts.

"What is this place?" asked James.

"It's a wonderful place,” replied Winston

“We’ve been expecting you, James."

A boy with bright blue eyes, fair skin, and auburn-colored hair stood ten feet away. Another boy with brown eyes, dark skin, and straight brown hair was with him. They wore fur-hooded upper garments, tooled leather trousers, and moccasins.

They stood staring at each other. James didn't know what to say or do.

"What are the names of your companions?" asked the blue-eyed boy.

James took Winston’s hand and uttered, "This is Winston, my closest companion, and this is Amelia, Winston's sister, and Benjamin, my brother. Who are you?"

“I am Faron and this is my mate Ronner. We are here to greet you."

"Do you live here?" asked James.

"No, we're only here when needed. We are living our normal lives in our own time and place. To you in your normal life, we've been dead over 40,000 years, but as you can see, we are young like you, entering into our early prime and preparing to make a difference for ourselves, our people, and humanity."

"Why are we here?" asked James.

"James, you are the next hominid to receive the gift of knowledge from the Guides."
"You will meet the others soon. Some of the first will probably shock you; I know they shocked us. They are of their time but with the knowledge that 'beyond is now.'"

"Once you join us, you too will learn the lesson. We are all descendants of the earliest of us and each other. As my brother did for me, Benjamin will carry the line of the Guides forward for you."

"And what of the female line?" asked James.

"I think you already know the answer."

Benjamin and Amelia looked at each other with stunned expressions on their faces.

Faron raised his fur hood. It was in the shape of a Phrygian cap.

"Amelia and Benjamin, I am sorry, but this is as far as you can go. James and Winston will rejoin you soon. They will need your support."

James and Winston followed Faron and Ronner down a passageway to the earliest shrine.

The shrine was an enormous chamber, much like a great European gothic cathedral, where the early hominids first worshipped soon after the catastrophic volcanic activity in the region and the creation of the altar seventeen million years ago.

As they entered the shrine, James and Winston saw all the generations of the Guides. Thousands of years often passed between the establishment of new Guides. They were all there. Hundreds of them assembled to observe today's ceremony.

James noticed that the earliest Guide and his companion were squatting close by as he approached the altar. The natural fur pattern on his head resembled a Phrygian cap.

Without speaking, the ape-like creature tells him, "Lay your hands on the altar, James."

'Beyond is now.' James could sense all the previous and future Guides and the path they must all follow. He is transformed.

Amelia and Benjamin waited among the giant figurines. They were in a daze and anxiously awaiting their brothers' return.

They kept checking each other out. Amelia thought, 'There's less than four years difference between our ages. It seems like a big difference now, but it will be hardly anything in ten years. He is kind of cute, and I do like him.'

For his part, Benjamin couldn't help staring at Amelia with a love-struck expression.

Epilogue
After what seemed like hours of revelations to James and Winston but minutes of anxious waiting to Benjamin and Amelia, they reunited in the chamber of the statues. They made their way to the valley floor and met up with a local rescue crew. Their disheveled appearance convinced the authorities that there indeed was an emergency. Later, they reunited with their parents and returned to Augsburg. The teens agreed not to discuss the chambers with anyone.

The following week was the official announcement of the Mithraeum and Unetice tumulus. Eminent experts, academics, politicians, donors and, press from all over the world attended the event.

Dr. Wagner was not present. Winston asked his mother where he was.

"Boris is away convalescing. The strain over the last few days was too much for him, and he is confined to a psychiatric ward for a while for his own good."

That night, in their room, Winston presented James with a present. He gave him a heavy brown cardboard box secured with a jute cord. They sat on the bed with the box between them. James carefully untied the cord and lifted the lid of the box. Inside was a knit cap … a Phrygian cap.

James and Winston made love for the first time that night.

Copyright © 2023 paren01; All Rights Reserved.
  • Like 5
  • Love 21
Thanks for reading. Comments are appreciated.
Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 
You are not currently following this author. Be sure to follow to keep up to date with new stories they post.

Recommended Comments

Chapter Comments

Thank you for this truly entertaining story, the depth and details of your characters and story were amazing. This was an educational story with a supernatural romance element which was very well done.

  • Like 1
  • Love 4
Link to comment
20 hours ago, Leo622 said:

Thank you for sharing your wonderful story. I look forward to reading your future literary works.

Thank you for the kind comment.

  • Like 3
  • Love 2
Link to comment
20 hours ago, akascrubber said:

The evil Boris almost l killed Winston and he fell over the cliff. james went down and farther to find Winston. He met mysterious being and saw beyond ancient sites, beings and statues.Knowledge of the past was transmitted to James.  Winston was alive and later rescued. They did not speak to anyone what they had seen or learned. The site is staying hidden.

Winston and James were rescued. The original discovery by their parents was announced to the press and public. Boris was undergoing care and not around. In celebration, James and Winston made love for the first time that night.

What a magical event. James was the vessel that honored those beings from the past who wanted to speak to him and reveal their knowledge to him.

 

Thank you for your continued support.

  • Like 3
  • Love 2
Link to comment
19 hours ago, JohnnyC said:

Thank you for this amazing story , I do hope a future book might come back to an adult James & Winston to further tell their extraordinary experiences 📚

Thanks for the comment. I’m wary of sequels, but maybe if there’s enough interest. I do have other stories to write.

  • Like 1
  • Fingers Crossed 4
Link to comment
2 hours ago, flesco said:

Thank you for this truly entertaining story, the depth and details of your characters and story were amazing. This was an educational story with a supernatural romance element which was very well done.

I am so happy you enjoyed the story. I like to think I write for myself, but the encouragement is always welcome. Thanks for the comment and review.

  • Like 3
  • Love 1
Link to comment
1 hour ago, jcdii said:

Hi - I really liked this story a lot....the mystery, the supernatural bent (even before the ending), the creepy professor, etc.

It almost seemed a bit like the ending was rushed.  Maybe we could have had another chapter.  The professor should have had some sort of cumuppence.  Winston 'might' have been saved from injury by the other beings.  What happens next with all this knowledge?

I would rather see a follow on with the boys as teens rather than men.

Thanks for writing a great compelling story - John

I understand your concern with a rushed ending. I try to balance, too much detail with too little detail. I might have missed the balance this time. Maybe I’ll write a sequel sometime and fill in some of the missing points. Thanks for the comment.

  • Like 1
  • Fingers Crossed 4
Link to comment

This was a unique and interesting world you created @paren01!  I have enjoyed reading and exploring side-by-side with these great characters. This was an interesting mystery with a lot of real history.  That's a great combination.  I do hope you write that sequel.

  • Like 1
  • Love 2
Link to comment
11 hours ago, raven1 said:

This was a unique and interesting world you created @paren01!  I have enjoyed reading and exploring side-by-side with these great characters. This was an interesting mystery with a lot of real history.  That's a great combination.  I do hope you write that sequel.

Thank for the encouraging comment and review. Perhaps, I’ll return to these characters sometime soon.

  • Like 1
  • Fingers Crossed 3
Link to comment
44 minutes ago, Dan South said:

I enjoy the embedded history lessons in your flights of fancy/fantasy. Always a great read.

Thanks for the comment. I’m happy to learn that others enjoy my stories.

  • Like 1
  • Love 3
Link to comment

Thanks again for this story. This episode in particular is more dramatic than some others. Curious to know what happened to that creep. At the same time so happy that Winston is okay.

  • Like 4
  • Love 1
Link to comment
24 minutes ago, J J said:

Thanks again for this story. This episode in particular is more dramatic than some others. Curious to know what happened to that creep. At the same time so happy that Winston is okay.

Thanks for the comment. I suspect that if there is a sequel, we’ll see more of Dr. Wagner.

  • Like 2
  • Wow 3
Link to comment
View Guidelines

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Newsletter

    Sign Up and get an occasional Newsletter.  Fill out your profile with favorite genres and say yes to genre news to get the monthly update for your favorite genres.

    Sign Up
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Our Privacy Policy can be found here: Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..