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FOLLOWING TIDES III -- Chapter 5

And the LAST Installement in this insipid little series....
Following Tides III
COMPLETE STORY in SIX PARTS:




You know the drill -- I'm posting unproofread drivel as I write it... Well, only *I* proofread it.... I'm sure I missed a TON of Mistakes


TO READ THE ENTIRE SERIES:

FOLLOWING TIDES PART I "ILYA and VAN" Go here:

PART I ** PART II ** PART III ** PART IV ** PART V **  PART VI ** PART VII ** PART VIII ** PART IX ** PART X




FOLLOWING TIDES PART II "SASCHA and YURI" Go Here:

PART I ** PART II ** PART III ** PART IV ** PART V ** PART VI ** PART VII **




FOLLOWING TIDES PART III "TOMAS and LEIF" Go Here:

PART I ** PART II ** PART III ** PART IV ** PART V ** PART VI **




Series Title: Following Tides III
Chapter Number: Five
“Truth in Peril”
Author: D. Sanders
=============================


Leif awoke feeling rested and warm. Golden fleece still beside him. “Wake my chosen. It is time.” The voice was soft and almost sad in Leif’s head and Leif just turned and embraced the Alpaca God’s neck.

“I not being afraid. I believe.” Leif said and the gentle puff of an alpaca kiss touched his brow.

“I know my chosen. Your trials you face have never been ones we would see visited on our children. That makes us sad. We do not seek suffering. But there are Laws even Gods must follow. We cannot take away suffering, we can only counsel. Suffering and Pain go hand in hand with Free Will.”

“But so does Love and Joy. I learn that when meeting Tomas. Hurt yes, but no be trading joy. You send me joy and most grateful I be.”

“Ah, dearest. That is why you are my chosen. My voice of Truth. Now come, we must walk.”

The alpaca stood and Leif with him. Leif realized then he was no longer naked. He wore a simple white robe. Open to his navel with a simple belt at his waist and stopping at his knees. He was barefoot and his hair was crowned in snowdrop blossoms. The flowers of summer, that bloomed for only one day at the midsummer solstice. It was still late-autumn. He walked with his arm across the large Alpaca’s withers and where the golden God tread snow melted and green grass dotted with snowdrops were left in his wake. He smelled of floral scents Leif had no name for, his coat warm and soft. Leif walked as if in a dream, he felt no fear, no hate, no pain and no cold, just the complete serenity of inner-peace as they moved toward the village, the sun slowly rising in the east.

Tomas was up all night. And just as the first rays of false dawn permeated the sky, he set off fireworks from his fingers. Waking the entire village as they came out still half asleep Tomas stood at the edge of his ship at the top of the gangplank. Addressing them all once they’d gathered to see what the commotion was. “He’s coming. I’d recommended you all go and greet him with the honor he deserves.”

“The Ger will not return! You know not our Laws! God Forsaken! Ger foul unnatural beasts! Gods will punish his sins!” The Holy shaman spat and Tomas glared at the old Wizard.

“I know the Laws better than you old man. Or rather I just follow them better than you. You know very well what is written on your soul! First, Give without thought of reward. Second, to Help all in need without pause, for you one day may be the one in need. And Last and most important. Love each other without conditions or reserve. The Law of Ger is a falsehood. Man created. You will repent yourself old man!”

“Trader know nothing! Come to path then! Nothing come! See yourself! No Ger come back from God Holy Height! Ger accursed! Gods will punish! See my people! See the TRUTH! Ger will not return!” The old shaman, with a righteous sneer of triumph led his people to the edge of the village as a golden light filtered down from above. It had been seven days of freezing rains and snow. Temperatures sub-zero during even daylight hours, at night it grew so cold, even with fires blazing in all hearths people awoke to frost on top of their bedding furs! The Ger would not have survived the first night. Tomas strode up to the front of the crowd beside the old shaman. Sonja and Alexandre right behind him.

“You Filthy Ger too! It be your man-seed I be finding in Ger dirty cottage!” The shaman growled like the bear totem he tried to emulate. Tomas smiled, eyes fixed to the path.

“Oh Aye. I don’t deny it, Leif is my beloved and my lover you snooping busy body. Sniffing about in his furs like a dog looking for a bone. He did not lie it was his semen you found. Mine was… elsewhere. Did you just now figure that one out old boy? Do I threaten your manhood? Is that why you torment men like us here? Are you afraid we might want you or something? Hate to break it to you, you stink, you need to wash that nasty beard free of crap and the rest of you too for that matter. In your current state a pig wouldn’t bed you willingly.”

“Dirty Ger!”

“I beg to differ. I think you’re an intolerant, self-righteous, power-hungry, insecure, cruel bastard who got a hard-on once for another man and either got turned down or got scared and then abused your power and punished the man you lusted after and then continued to punish “gers” like him, like YOURSELF ever since. Am I close? I think I am spot on actually. It makes me sick!”

The whole village stared at the men arguing, jaws agape. Tomas was right; the Ger laws had only come into being within the last forty years. The first Ger punished and dishonored had been the Shaman’s own kin. Tomas was opening several eyes. Including Johan’s.

“You talk against the Gods! You will leave at once Trader!” The shaman spat, furious.

“Oh no. I think I’m going to stick around for a moment here. Making sure you behave yourself. I’m not leaving until the show is over.”

Just then the crowd gasped. And the whole field of snow turned to grass and flowers before them like a carpet of midsummer. The frigid air warming by leaps and bounds. The Shaman’s eyes widened.

Leif still walking serenely beside his God came to the edge of the village just as dawn broke. Tomas smiling at him with deepest love and affection, The shaman bearing a look of wrathful fury and the entire populace of enraptured villagers were gathered there waiting for him to arrive.

Tomas went to one knee. The villagers following suit. The shaman sputtered with indignant rage still standing. “Trickery! Magic! Trader Ger filth helped you! You should be Dead dirty GER!!”

“Nay, I am not dead Shaman Oleg. I be being very much alive. I be thinking you should be bowing to God. Show no honor to him Shaman.”

“A GOD? THAT? It be one of your beasties! Just filthy wizard Ger magic! How else he know you be coming alive? He be doing this to trick us! Save his Ger lover! Stinking Ger, trader magic nothing more!”

“Nay is not. Very much real Shaman. When I be being taken up to Holy Height, being stripped naked to live seven days, You be knowing I should die, just like other Ger you send to die, sad bones laying there, denied honor and cruel death. Many sad spirits live on holy height sent to die horrible death Like your kinsman, Æinridi, who only crime in life be he loved Thorir. Thorir much love Æinridi. No crime at all, nothing but good honor love. When you no could have Æinridi, you grow deep jealous, you hate lover Thorir, you take Æinridi up mountain, he beg you not! You Rape kill him, Thorir come, find Æinridi soul lost! Thorir rage, fight him not fair, no magic Thorir have. Soul lost! You blame Gods punish and send both to die! Make good people believe! Later follow Asgaut and Brand, Gæda and Øystæin and much other. Your hate has sent you into shadow. Kill us all in hate you try! Because no could have love of one you wanted. It not being us with evil soul, is you. Soul lost in Shadow, many years gone in darkness now. You being in Lost faith, you turned back on Gods. Embrace hate you did. Repent now and being soul clean again. Let go loss, let go jealousy, let go anger, let go hate! Law says, Love each other without conditions or reserve! Ger is just one of many good loves. All equal in eyes of Gods!” Leif said to the shaman then turned to face Tomas. Love shone brighter than the sun as their eyes met.

Leif walked forward and Tomas stood to walk and meet him halfway where Tomas knelt again before Leif and took his hands in his own. As he knelt his own clothes visibly bleached into a blinding white and his own hair was suddenly crowned with the small white blooms. Leif had appeared before them in wedding white, his intended now matched him and met him on the field as the sun shone down upon them as the sun rose above the horizon. This was to be their bonding day.

“I am your Protector. Your Friend. Your Brother. Your Lover. I was lead to you as you were lead to me. Now and always will I be by your side beloved. I love you, and bond myself to you as your husband. If you will but have me.” Tomas vowed kissing Leif’s hands he held. Leif smiled down, love shining in his eyes.

“Heart of Mine Tomas. I go where you go. Friend, Brother, Lover too. Meant for you as meant for me, Soul love in us deep, a strong bond we be sharing. Now, always together, my husband, my mate, my life.” Leif replied as Tomas stood.

The Alpaca God walked forward and first kissed Leif’s brow then Tomas’ as his head dipped low and he rested his soft golden fleece upon the joined hands between them. Upon their ring fingers, light coalesced in blinding radiance as two golden bands appeared on their hands. The same brilliant shade of gold of the God joining them together.

Their vows of love had been spoken before the God himself and the union divinely blessed.

From the sea dolphins, seals and sea lions sang a deafening chorus of jubilation and all eyes turned to see a goddess standing there on the waters. She smiled and held up her hands and a rainbow streaked across the sky. “Tomas! Charge you do I protect the Chosen Voice of Truth. Remember thy duty! Remember the Laws written upon on your soul Flesh of my Flesh, Blood of my Blood! First, Give without thought of reward. Second, to Help all in need without pause, for you one day may be the one in need. And Last and most important. Love each other without conditions or reserve!”

“Aye. Lady mother. I vow to you, to your brother Gods and to my beloved. I will not forget!”

“Leif! Chosen one of my Brother, Voice of Truth, the Song of Those with no Songs, I charge you too. Forget not thy duty. Go with my Red-Sails. Speak Truth to all and for all men to hear. Give voices to beasts in need, teach others what Truth you now know!”

“Aye, Lady mother. I vow.”

“Then be blessed and let no man tear asunder the laws written on all men’s souls.” The goddess faded into the sea and the Alpaca turned to Leif.

“Truth in Peril. Guard well Protector of my Chosen.” He ordered.

“Aye my Lord. Always.” Tomas said as the Golden God then turned to Sonja who stood next to her husband in awe.

“My daughter chosen. Mother Protector. Long have you served me strong and faithful, I am pleased.” He said and his form shifted into a huge polar bear in the same golden color as he walked over to her and she wept into his fur as she hugged his neck and he licked her face.

“Cry not daughter chosen. Much work for me must still be doing. Teach well the lessons to the children who follow. Return to Safe Harbor. Raise the new herds, teach the children. Pass on the many lessons you have learned. Come to me when your years expire. But not so soon as you fear beloved chosen, much work you still have before you.” He said and Sonja nodded. He then turned to Alexandre.

“Great Warrior, kept safe my chosen through many Perils. Saved her in her darkest hour, loved her through her brightest, and made Nine healthy warriors together. Time to rest Warrior. Time for protecting over, time for simply loving now. This must be last voyage. Son of my Sister Goddess.”

“Aye my Lord. I know. I think I can handle just loving her here on out. Always have and always will.” Alexandre replied and the Polar Bear simply faded into golden motes on the sunlight.

No one spoke, no one dared breathe. They had just witnessed a Ger marriage that the Gods themselves not only blessed but had officiated themselves for all to bear witness. Proving that for years the Island of Skanda had been following a false prophet. Persecuting and tormenting innocent men in the name of the Gods.

Tomas stood behind Leif, his arms wrapped around his shoulders. Watching The shaman like a hawk watched a mouse. Oleg was fuming with hatred. Johan was the first to disengage from the crowd and he fell weeping at his son’s feet.

“Forgive. Son please forgive. Beg you I do.”

“Father. Please not be begging. You, listen to false words only. You believe in heart they from Gods. You did only what you believe to be good and true. I know. Nothing to forgive my father. I never stop loving my father. Never will.” Leif held open his arms and his father crushed him in an embrace.

“Lies! Deception! Johan do not be fooled!”

“Feh! I only being fooled by you! Do you not feel the God’s light on your soul? Not deception! Real!”

“Trickery!”

“Nay! Not. Look at our people touched! Only you seem not to feel Truth!”

“Ger! Curse upon you!” The shaman in his fury raised his hand and Tomas held out his hand and the power the shaman threw at them glanced harmlessly aside.

“I am much stronger than you Old Man. Raise your hand to my spouse again and I will judge you with the powers given to me. My duty in this world is to protect it from shadow men like you. This is your only warning. Turn to the light or be cast out for all time.”

“Blasphemy! WICKED GER!”

The shaman never finished raising his staff. Light encased him and he fell lifeless to the ground. He slept a sleep he would never awake from. He lived still but forever in dream.

“Perhaps in dreams you will once again see the light. You will awaken if you let go of your hatred old man.” Tomas said turning to Johan.

“He is your kinsmen, He is yours to care for.”

“Aye Captain Tomas sir. Sven! Take him home. Let sleep in own bed. Dream of Light I pray.”

Several young men carried the old Shaman off home. The people would tend his fire to keep him warm while he slept.

The rest turned to Leif. “I cannot be being new Shaman. I must leave with husband. Other work I need be doing. Need not shaman if all listen and remember what happen today. As Gods say, we all be having Laws written on soul. Must need be reading them with hearts.” Leif smiled as Tomas tucked an arm around his shoulders. The Warmth of the God’s presence was fading, the true season’s temperatures were returning and Leif was shivering standing half dressed and barefoot in the snow.

“I will be taking my beloved in to warm him. Let us feast tonight in celebration!” Tomas cried and everyone cheered. He reached out to shake Johan’s hand. “I know it’s a bit late. Seeing as he is already my husband. But may I also have his father’s blessing?”

“Aye. With joy.” Johan smiled and shook Tomas’ hand.

“Then until tonight.” Tomas smiled scooping Leif up into his arms and carrying him across the deepening snow. Leif was freezing cold to the touch and Tomas was not about to have him walk barefoot in snow.

Once up the Gangplank Tomas set Leif down and leaned over to kiss him tenderly. “I love you.” He sighed as he stepped back from the kiss. Leif smiled up at him and wrapped his arms around Tomas’ waist.

“I be being much love with you too Tomas heart of mine. Seven days dream of this day. Five-year weep for believing never to have, nineteen year long for.”

“Ah beloved, no more. Whatever road we take now, we take together.”

“Aye.” Leif smiled and Tomas grabbed his hand.

“Come on, I’d better go introduce you to my parent’s. Mum will kill me when she finds out I got married without her here.” Tomas grinned and Leif laughed and let Tomas lead him down stairs toward their cabin.

“We had no choice. Gods marry us, Tomas not even time to propose me before I be being given to him in white! Not that I be minding. I think she being forgive.”

“You don’t know me mum. I’m in for a guilt trip for the rest of my life over this. Divine Intervention or not!” Tomas laughed as they reached their cabin and shut the door behind them.

*~*~*~*~*



TO READ THE ENTIRE SERIES:

FOLLOWING TIDES PART I "ILYA and VAN" Go here:

PART I ** PART II ** PART III ** PART IV ** PART V **  PART VI ** PART VII ** PART VIII ** PART IX ** PART X




FOLLOWING TIDES PART II "SASCHA and YURI" Go Here:

PART I ** PART II ** PART III ** PART IV ** PART V ** PART VI ** PART VII **




FOLLOWING TIDES PART III "TOMAS and LEIF" Go Here:

PART I ** PART II ** PART III ** PART IV ** PART V ** PART VI **


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