Read Solstice - Of The Heart Online

Authors: John Blenkush

Tags: #romance, #paranormal, #teen romance, #teen love, #mythical, #vampirism, #mount shasta, #law of one

Solstice - Of The Heart (4 page)

BOOK: Solstice - Of The Heart
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“What about those,” I said acting as
though I really cared about a bunch of lockers being left open.
Come to think of it, one of them was mine, so...yes I did have
concern. Not that I had anything to hide, just that I didn’t like
peering eyes.

And I should speak!

“I’ll take care of it,” Bernard said
as he led me down the hall and opened the front door. “See you
Monday morning.”

Sleet and rain fell as I walked home.
I pulled up my collar. Now would be a good time to let my hair
down. Keep my neck warm. For six short blocks I didn’t feel like
bothering. I turned left to Cherrie’s house rather than right
toward the cabin. If I couldn’t sleep in on Saturday, neither
should she.

Cherrie had her own entrance into
Grandpa Garl’s house. She lived down in the basement, which was
made up of one big room with a small bathroom off to the side. I
swung around the back, tip-toed down the steps and, before
entering, kicked and then knocked on the door.

I found Cherrie, fully dressed, lying
on top of the covers of her bed. She wasn’t the neatest housekeeper
I knew, so I had to side step clothes, magazines, and a lawn

Lawn mower?

I tapped Cherrie on the shoulder. If
somebody crept into my house and poked me in the shoulder while I
slept, you would have to peel me off the ceiling.

Not Cherrie. She rolled

“Jason’s not here,” she

I searched the dim corners of the room
for a Jason. The bathroom door stood open, so I figured he wasn’t
in there.

“Who’s Jason?”


“You awake?”

Cherrie sat up. She pulled the covers
around her.

“Julis, what are you doing

“It’s Saturday.”

Cherrie glanced at her watch. “It’s
Saturday night!”

“Morning for most people.”

“Why aren’t you in bed?”

“Someone talked me into skipping
school. Remember?”

“It’s a free world. You made your

“Yeah. And ditching class got me a
date with the janitor.”

“Cherrie looked at her watch again.
“Then what are you doing here? Shouldn’t you be scrubbing toilets
or something?”

Obviously Cherrie had done a stint or
two in detention.

“I was let go early for good

“You?” Cherrie chuckled. “Since

“Since I started hanging with

“Yeah. Right.” She attached the unlit
cigarette to her bottom lip. She sat up, stiff backed, against the
wall. “What’s up?”

I curled up on the bed in front of
her. “Mr. Bernard made me clean lockers.”

“Sounds intriguing. What other earth
shattering news do you want to share before I go back to

“Just that I got a peek inside Aaron
Delmon’s locker.”

Cherrie shrouded her face with her
hand. “Oh my god! And?”

“He doesn’t have any girl pictures in
his locker. I don’t think he has a girlfriend.”

Cherrie guffawed. “Duh. Join the club.
Thought I told you, once or twice, the Delmon gang doesn’t
associate with us lower class peons.”

“I don’t think Aaron’s that

“Okay,” Cherrie said. “Let’s back it
down a bit. This love-sick puppy stuff is about to gag

“Who said anything about

“Then what are you

“Just want to get to know him. He
seems interesting.”

“I’ll tell you what is making you all
hot and bothered.”


“He looked at you. You never had a boy
look at you before?”

“Sure. But not a god-man. So you admit
it. He wasn’t looking at you.”

“He’s had his chances. I confess. He
looked at you. So now what? You’re going to go bug-eyed over

“Maybe. You said he isn’t a

“He isn’t. Not in the truest sense of
the word.”

“Why do you suppose his locker is
lined with pictures of Shasta?”

“The mountain?”


Cherrie nodded to the one window in
her room.

“Because it’s there?”

“More than that, I think. He seems
infatuated with the mountain.”

“Maybe so. Bernard takes them up on
Shasta all the time.”


“Yeah. Their brother.”

“You mean Bernard the janitor at

Cherrie sat up. She removed the
cigarette from her mouth. “Bernard was at school today?”

I could feel Cherrie stiffen as I
answered. “Yes. He said he runs detention.”

“Not all the time. Usually it’s an
administrator. He didn’t see you in Aaron’s locker, did


“Because he’s Aaron’s

“Are we talking about the same man?
This guy is old.”

“Yep, that’s him. Did he see you or

“No. I don’t think so. He would have
said something. Don’t you think?”

“Probably so.”

“Come to think of it, Bernard does
have the same smell as Aaron and his brothers. And he looks like
them too.”

“They’re not his brothers, the other
two. They’re cousins. They all live together. Bernard, from what I
hear, takes care of them.”

“Where’re their parents?”

“Don’t know. Beaumont and Belmont are
the other two you saw at the Crags. They’re twins, cousins to
Aaron. They showed up a couple of years ago, while we were in
junior high. Aaron arrived last year.”

“How old are the cousins?”

“They’re seniors. Why? You thinking
about dating them too?”

“No. Just curious.”

“Well, here’s for curious. Everyone
knows those four live together, yet no one, least no one I know,
knows what they do behind closed doors.”

“You’re not...”

“Think about it. Three good looking
studs in their prime who don’t date.”

“They’re brothers!”

“Cousins, or so they say. Maybe
kissing cousins.”

I leaned back on the bed and thought
about what Cherrie had just implied. The possibility existed. It
was the same question that had shot through my head while I stood
in front of Aaron’s locker, one, that I was quick to dismiss. Maybe
too quick.

“You said the Delmon’s aren’t

“They aren’t.”

“But they climb Shasta?”

“There’s a difference. There are rock
climbers and there are mountaineers. The Delmons are mountaineers,
not rock climbers.”

“I want to climb Shasta.”

Cherrie looked at me sideways. “You’ve
been sniffing Bernard’s cleaning fluid? You mean climb to the

That part didn’t make sense. I was a
flatlander. I had never stood on a mountain, much climbed

“Not to the top. Maybe just part

“You can drive part way.”

“You can?”

“Sure. All the way up to Bunny

“How high is that?”

“Seven-thousand feet, I think. Half
way up the mountain.”

“Can you drive me up


“I don’t know. I just want to see

Cherrie smiled. “I see where you’re
going with this. Aaron likes the mountain so you want to see why.
I’ll save you the bother. Mountaineers don’t need a reason to
climb. They just do because it’s there.”

“How many times did you say the
Delmons have climbed Shasta?”


I reflected back to the inscription on
the Abraham’s Tree poster in Aaron’s locker. I remembered part of
the caption talked about the supernatural and how some people
believed Mount Shasta to be one of Earth’s major power

“Cherrie, do you believe there’s
something special about Shasta?”

“Me? No. Bunch of other people do
though. The new agers they call them. Guess you could place the
Delmons in that category. I followed them once, up to Casaval
Ridge. Saw them sitting half-naked on an overhang.”

I wasn’t sure I liked where this was
going. I scooted forward, closer to Cherrie. “And?”

“And that’s all they did. Just sat
there with their legs crossed and their eyes closed.”

“Nothing else?” (I was imagining the

“Like what?”

I took the easy way out. “Oh, I don’t
know. Maybe meditating?”

“Maybe. Seemed like it.”

I had to ask the question. “So you
don’t think they’re gay?”

Cherrie laughed. “What if I told you I
thought they were? Would that back you off?”

“Well, do you?”

“No. No I don’t. Monks maybe but not

“So not kissing cousins.”

“Just messing with you.”

“But you think they might be

“Could be. Saw them sitting there,
cross legged, half naked, heat coming off their bodies, facing west
toward Shastina.”


“It’s Shasta’s sister mountain, or
some people call it her daughter. It’s a smaller mountain with a
sunken top. It has unusual character. If you look at it the right
way you can see what looks like a face on it with the ears of a


“Yeah, but not as much as the Delmons.
I watched them for an hour. They just sat there. No chanting. Not
what you’d expect of a Monk. But I did see heat waves. Like they
were burning up or something.”

“You said they were naked. How

“Half-naked, I said. Guess maybe more
since they were in their shorts.”

“Can you drive me up there? Up to

“Ah, Julis.”

I pointed a finger at Cherrie. “You
own me.”

“For what?”

“Yesterday. It’s your fault I had to
serve detention.”

“I’ll drive you. But I don’t owe you.
You skipped school on your own.”

“Okay. When? This

“Can’t. Have to take Grandpa to
Redding. Saturdays are his big city day, grocery shopping and all
that. Besides, I’m not done sleeping.”

“Tomorrow then?”

“Sure. Tomorrow.”





Dierdra was nowhere to be found when I
got home. A note hung on the refrigerator explaining she had gone
to Redding to take care of a client. She left me a reminder to do
some chores; laundry, dishes, and to fill the wood box.

I headed for the computer.

I typed in Abraham’s Tree. Too
generic. I added Mount Shasta. The first listing was entitled
Clouds Over Mount Shasta. Sure enough, I found the Abraham Tree
photograph along with a number of other photos. Nothing new Aaron’s
locker hadn’t revealed. I scrolled down, clicked the next listing,
(Mount Shasta’s Annotated Bibliography) and read.

The description talked about the lowly
primate, the lemur, as being named after the ancient Roman
mythological ghosts called ‘lemures.’ It mentioned Lemuria was a
continent, which had submerged and had gone long lost. It claimed
the people of the lost continent of Lemuria were highly advanced

I was about to pass on the rest of the
narrative when my eye caught. I zeroed in on the words.

In the 1880s a Siskiyou
County, California, resident named Frederick Spencer Oliver wrote A
Dweller on Two Planets, or, the Dividing of the Way which described
a secret city inside of Mt. Shasta and in passing mentioned

I stopped, sat back, and thought for a
moment. This was all folklore, wasn’t it? Isn’t that what they were
saying in the article? A secret city inside Mount Shasta? Highly
advanced beings? Stuff of movies involving aliens and spaceships?
Not something I believed in. I felt too grounded for such nonsense,
but I couldn’t resist.

I read on.

I picked out phrases and jotted them
down on a prescription pad Dierdra had left by the computer. I
couldn’t write fast enough. Too much information so, as I learned
to do in school, I jotted down main points.

Frederick Spencer Oliver,
A Dweller on Two Planets

Lemurian village at Mt.
Shasta named Telos

Physical evidence of a
lost continent once thought a myth.

I reminded myself this is nothing but
mythical junk, but like a drug addict out of control I continued to
feed my curiosity. The prescription pad filled up fast. I pulled a
sheet of paper from the printer and scratched out notes. I couldn’t
keep up with the information so I opened Microsoft Word and used
the cut and paste feature to add bits and pieces from the

BOOK: Solstice - Of The Heart
11.27Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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