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THE BLUE DOVE#1: The Advocate Strikes! Part Seven

A strong wind cascaded over the ocean and up the rocky cliffs.  Waves pounded the coastline while sea birds hovered over the churning water looking for their next meal.  Two figures made their way across the plateau.  One trailed slightly behind the other figure, a long, white walking stick with red tip hugging the ground before her.   The lead figure moved quickly up the slight rise in the terrain.  He bounded through the high grass, gradually putting more distance between himself and the young girl.

“Angela! Angela!” he called out.  “Get up here, dear!  You have to see this!”

“That’s funny, dad,” the girl replied.  She adjusted her dark, sunglasses.  “Really funny.”

“Oh, come on Angela,” her father replied.  “I didn’t mean it that way.  Don’t be a downer.  How many of your friends would love to be spending their fall break in Sicily?”

“I don’t know,” Angela called back.  “All the ones who aren’t currently sunning themselves on the beaches of Mexico, maybe?  Or how about the ones spending their break in Disney?”

“Anybody can go to those places,” he said.  “How many get to see something as amazing as this?”

Ted Palmer was a museum curator back in the United States.  He wore short, rimmed glasses and carried a large backpack full of books and maps.  He was tall and slim, but his pants and shirt never seemed to fit right.  Since losing his wife to cancer ten years ago, he travelled the world in search of ancient artifacts.  Highly educated, Mr. Palmer had published numerous papers and books filled with wild theories of medieval lore and fantasy which had all been rejected by the criticism of his academic peers even though the books sold quite well.  Many of his fellow professors thought the board of directors and dean at the university where Palmer taught two classes sent him on these relic searching trips to keep him away from the students and visitors to the campus.  Nothing he had ever brought back had been put on display.

“Come on!  It’s right up this hill!” he shouted.

“It’s not like I can see anything anyway,” Angela whispered under her breath.

Angela Palmer was Ted Palmer’s only daughter.  She was short in stature, but maintained a smart, girl you want as your lab partner look.  Her trench coat and scarf blew freely in the gusting wind.  Her hair touched her shoulders and she had several small freckles on her face.  She carried nothing in her gloved hands, except for a walking stick which she used to navigate her way around.   Angela had been blind since birth.  She shrugged her shoulders.

“Coming, dad,” she reluctantly said.

The small, stone church dated back to the Middle Ages.  It had once housed a small armory of weapons for Crusaders embarking on their quest to the Holy Land.  The church was surprisingly in good condition.  Its stained glass windows were intact and the church’s tower spire, surrounded by marble statues, had only minimum stone gashes from centuries of weather.  In the rear of the church, a cemetery had been planted.  The headstones were crude and worn.  Many of the details on them were not even legible.  The gravel pathway of tiny, white stone was visible, despite the years of overgrowth and neglect.

“This is it!” Mr. Palmer gleefully said.  “This is it!”

“So what exactly is supposed to be here again?” Angela asked.

“The hand of the great Alfred the Peasant.  He single handily captured a port city in Asia Minor from the Turks during the 5th Crusade!”

“There’s no such person as Alfred the Peasant, dad,” Angela quietly gasped. “And that’s pretty gross, anyway.”

“Oh yea of little faith,” Palmer gleefully said.  He disappeared through the church doors.

“Don’t worry about me, dad,” Angela remarked.  “I’ll be sure not to fall off any cliffs or something.”

Angela stood in silence for several moments.  She could hear the wind whipping around her and the seagulls wailing.  Becoming bored, Angela started to walk around the church grounds.  She made her way down the gravel pathway, carefully guiding her steps with her walking stick.  Angela entered the cemetery.  Her white cane brushed up against a headstone.  She turned to the left, only to find another headstone blocking her way.

“What do we have here?” she whispered. Angela knelt down and removed her glove.  She rubbed her fingers across the headstone, feeling the raised stone and indentions, trying to make out a name and date.

“L-E,” she murmured.  “1-4-6-6.”

There was a slight, rumbling sound beneath her feet.  Angela stood and instinctively gazed around the cemetery.  The dirt at her feet suddenly trembled and became soft.  The ground collapsed underneath her and she disappeared into the earth with a scream.  Angela fell into the darkness for what felt like an eternity.  Her sunglasses flew off her face.  The walking stick slipped through her fingers.  She hit the ground, but surprisingly she did not hit hard.  Angela crawled on her hands and knees desperately trying to find her white cane in the blackness.  She miraculously found her glasses and fumbled in fear to put them back on her face.  A great, oval ball of white light materialized before her.

“What do you see?” a deep voice bellowed out.

“Don’t hurt me,” Angela stuttered.  She felt tears of fear forming in her eyes.

“What do you see?” the deep voice asked again.

“I, I can’t see anything,” Angela trembled, reaching out across the dirt in a vain attempt to find her white cane.  “I’m blind.”

“Only your eyes cannot see. You have great faith that is hidden. Look again and do not be afraid.”

Angela felt the warmth of the light.  There was comfort.  She closed her eyes and reopened them.

“I see a great light,” Angela remarked. She struggled to her knees.

Beshtar the Archangel stepped through the glowing orb and stood before her.

“You are one of twelve who will change your world,” Beshtar said.

The Blue Dove raced across the warehouse rooftops. He effortlessly leaped from building to building. Below him, the Border City docks sat vacant except for the clanging of a rusted buoy out on the water. The Blue Dove gazed across the darken horizon.

“Do you see anything?” Gabriel’s voice echoed over the cowl link.

“Nothing. I thought that since the Bible was brought in by ship maybe they would use the same exit route. But, there’s nothing,” the Blue Dove responded.

“Maybe car or truck?”

“I don’t think so,” the Blue Dove replied. “But, there is one other way.”

It was the Border City Municipal Airport. The two flight controllers sat in the lone airport tower. Both wore brown baseball caps and wrinkled clothes. One had his feet propped up on the control panel, sipping coffee and reading a comic book. He wore headphones listening to music. The second flight controller was putting on his jacket.

“You calling it a night, Gary?” the one said.

“Yeah, I’ve had enough of this place for one day. Take it easy. Try not to get too bored.”

“No problem,” he replied. “You know nothing exciting ever happens around this place.”

Gary exited through the door. The solo flight controller sighed and went back to reading his comic book. After several minutes, he took a sip of coffee and looked out at the runway lights. He banged his hands on the computers like he was playing drums. The tower door slowly creaked open.

“Gary?” the flight controller said, removing his headphones. “Is that you? You forget something?”

The Blue Dove emerged from the shadows. The flight controller’s jaw dropped. He fell from his chair, knocking over his coffee cup and slammed into the floor. He leaped to his feet and stumbled backward against the computer consoles.

“Oh my goodness, Oh my goodness,” he stammered out. “What are you!?!”

“I am the Blue Dove and I have something for you as long as you tell me what I want to know.”

He took a step closer to the flight controller, which almost sent the frightened man to his knees.

“The last plane that took off from here,” the Blue Dove angrily said. “Where was it going?”

“I don’t know,” the flight controller gasped. “It was a couple of hours ago. They didn’t file a flight plan.”

“Why not! Why were they allowed to take off!”

“Look,” the flight controller fearfully cried. “I don’t know. I don’t ask a lot of questions. We got a lot of high rollers that come through here. They slip me some dollars and I send them on their way. I’m trying to support a family. Don’t hurt me!”

The Blue Dove grabbed the flight controller by the shirt.

“Make an honest living. Don’t live under the table.”

The Blue Dove released the flight controller.

“Earlier I said I’d give you something, well you don’t know it yet but I’ve just given you peace,” the Blue Dove calmly said. The flight controller removed his baseball cap and slumped to the ground in tears. Wiping his eyes, he gazed around the tower. The Blue Dove was gone.


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