Who Made The Seven Stars
the neck of a slave, the other end fastens
itself around your own." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
fledging was a great success. Those newly winged were instructed they
must wear their wings for six to twelve hours before Billy and his
posse could teach them how to de-wing. Some woke up, managed to get
themselves together, and made it downstairs for breakfast, but many
didn’t. It didn’t seem to be as hard on the Sun Bears as it was on the
humans. They were having a ball standing before mirrors and admiring
each other. Every time one of the boys past them the bears would tell
them again how kind and considerate they were to tend to them and see
to their needs. They never experienced another group of people who
displayed as much care and love toward them as their new family. They
were thrilled with their new wings and living under the protection of
the humans on Earth.
Since Vox was
still convalescing from his fledging, he wasn’t able to make it to
church for the Sunday morning service. Fortunately, the small town
stopped having more than one service on Sunday mornings and no service
on Sunday evening. While people still clung to their myths and
superstitions, they attended services less. As the evolution of a
society progresses technologically, the church, which once was the
center of social interaction between like-minded people, served as a
news resource, renewing of close relationships within a community,
became obsolete. Like Television killed Sunday evening services, the
Internet and it’s vast accumulation of knowledge and communication may
be slowly killing the rest of the beast. Billy agreed to drive
in to the small town to be a substitute organist for Vox. Kate said she
would like to go and invited Zelma Jane. Zelma wouldn’t miss a
chance to hear Billy play. Abigale felt her boys were doing a wonderful
job of caring for their dad and the Sun Bears and asked to join the
ladies. They graciously encouraged her. The boys were enjoying their
positions of importance, and wanted to stay behind to help those who
still might be in pain.
into his huge cowboy persona to accompany the ladies and protect his
master. Nick went along as one of Billy’s top cow hands. They took the
big ranch van and there was plenty of room for everyone. Dorcas didn’t
want to go and stayed behind to get Sunday dinner underway. The
preacher and many of the congregation were surprised and pleased to see
the Daniels represented at Sunday morning Church Service. When Billy
explained he had come to replace an ailing Vox, the pastor became
concerned. “Is Mr. Humana all right?” he asked.
“Yes, he’s fine.
Just a bit under the weather with a spring cold -- you know how
everyone has to adjust from the cold of winter to the warmer weather of
spring -- and, of course, you appreciate how much harder it can be on
older folks. He’s been staying with us at the ranch for several days.
We’ve been seeing to him and keeping him in bed. He thought he would be
okay by today, but we urged him not to push it. I promised Vox I would
gladly come and fill in for him. Either me or my grandmother will be
happy to play for the service,” Billy said.
rather you play, if you don’t mind. I don’t often get to be with alone
Mrs. Redbone and Abigale McMartin. It may be our last chance for a
while before they go back to Houston. It would be a relaxing treat for
me if you would, Dear,” Kate said and smiled the smile only a
grandmother can pull-off convincingly while patting him
ever-so-lovingly on his arm. She didn’t fool Billy for a minute. A big
grin crossed his face. He knew his grandma wanted to gossip with Zelma
“You will do
nicely, Mr. Daniels,’ the preacher said, “We’re most grateful. You’ve
played for many of our services before and know the drill. Nothing
fancy. This isn’t a special holy day anyway. Every Sunday should be a
holy day, but today isn’t one of note -- except, for your music of
course,” the preacher said, and they shared a laugh at his clever
Billy took his
place at the organ and fit in so well very few people in the
congregation realized the regular organist wasn’t playing, and they had
a substitute playing the windy beast. Billy found one
of Vox’s Dudley Buck preludes beneath the bench, and gave it a rather
spirited reading while the rest of the congregation were being seated.
Kate sat between Zelma and Abigale. “All right, ladies, who among us
feels left out?" Kate asked. She raised her own hand and without
further explanation Zelma Jane and Abigale raised their’s.
“I don’t know
what being enhanced means, but from the looks of Vox and Elmer, I’m
ready to dive in head first,” Abigale said, “Besides, Roz and Roxanne
got wings,” she added.
heart!” Zelma Jane exclaimed, “Don’t get me wrong, I will be eternally
grateful for what Billy and his angels did for me, and I swear to both
of you, I haven’t felt so good since I was a freshman at Baylor,” she
allowed, “However, I certainly don’t think it would do us any harm to
gently remind 'them good ole boys’ if they want angel food cake,
somebody’s got to bake it!” Zelma declared. Kate and Abigale broke up
settled! Over Sunday dinner, I’ll bring up the subject and not ask
‘why’ but ‘when,’” Kate declared.
“Good for you,
Mother Kate!” Abigale said and adjusted herself in her seat.
“We got chore’
back, Tiger Lady!” Zelma Jane exclaimed, and they shared a laugh.
It came time for the
but the choir didn’t have anything worked up. Billy played Wagner’s
‘Siegfried Idyll’ quietly, and it worked perfectly; just long enough
for the ushers to pass the donation plates. As a postlude, Billy played
the J. S. Bach's chorale “Sheep May Safely Graze” and it was the
perfect ending to a standard church service.
service was over, Billy and his family were the last to leave. The
pastor was at the front door shaking everyone’s hand, thanking them for
coming, and wishing them well. “Will Mr. Humana be
resuming his regular duties as organist or should we start looking for
a replacement?” the preacher asked Billy rather presumptuously.
Kate replied for her grandson, “He’s just got a bad cold. In fact,
since he’s been at the ranch these past several days, he looks and
feels like a new man. You won’t believe how much better he looks,” she
said, knowing full well the preacher would probably drop his dentures.
“I’m sure Vox
will be able to play for the church for many years to come,” Billy
backed up his grandmother.
On the drive
back to the ranch, Kate was a little angry the preacher seemed like he
wanted to get rid of Vox. “I’m half a mind to tell Vox not to go back
to that darn church. They can see he’s getting older, and I think they
just want to get rid of him. After all his years of faithful service
and hard work for that church, they seem to be chomping at the bit to
rush him out the door into a rest home. Can you imagine what a shock it
will be when they see the newly refurbished Vox with his extra talented
sister helping him with his playing?” she said. Everyone grinned but no
one laughed at her. “It just ain’t right for them to be that way.
They’re suppose to be supportive of the poor and elderly,” she added.
was almost to the point of not being able to perform his duties for the
church. He’s much better now and hopefully will last many more decades,
but we shouldn’t judge the preacher,” Billy said quietly.
“I know you’re
right, Billy, but the way he asked -- he just made me angry,” Kate said.
you love Vox and feel protective of him. Vox is like the brother and
sister you ain’t never had. That’s why so many straight women have gay
men for close companions. They have a boyfriend who won’t insist on
feeling them up all the time, a girlfriend who understands their
problems with men, and will be honest to a fault with them about their
horrible taste in clothes. Love’n someone as unique at Vox ain’t
nothing to be ashamed of, Grandma,” Billy tried to soothe her feelings.
“I’d like to see
them get another organist who was worth a tinker’s dam for the pittance
they pay that poor man. If it weren’t for the Breedlove’s and our help,
we wouldn’t have a competent organist to play for our church,” Kate
said with considerable anger.
Grandma. I got good news what’s gonna’ make you very happy,” Billy said.
“Good news would
be welcome about now, Billy,” Kate replied like she felt defeated.
“Our big daddy
bull asked Vox and Roxanne to marry him last e’nin,” Billy said
unprepared for the ‘whoop’ and hand clapping from the three ladies.
Zelma Jane and Abigale were overjoyed and Kate shed tears as she was
laughing and applauding the good news. “How wonderful. If there were
ever two souls what needed and deserved each other more than Elmer
Breedlove, Vox, and Rox, I can’t imagine it,” Kate said, ‘It certainly
is good news, but it brings up more worries about two men getting
married,” she added.
necessarily, Kate,” Abigale spoke up, “Tom, me, and the boys have been
included in several same sex marriages in Austin, Dallas, Houston, and
San Antonio. Calhoun was ring bearer for one of Tom’s close business
associates. We invited him and his partner to our place many times for
parties and holidays. The boys are not new to same sex marriage and
take it in stride. I think they’re more open minded and well adjusted
about it than most of their peers. I know it isn’t that way in smaller
towns in Texas, but despite the theocracy we had forced upon us, I
think the people are tired of living with hate and denying a minority
equal rights,” she said.
“I have to agree
with Abigale, Kate,” Zelma Jane said, “Lord 'a mercy, them many years
me and Travis were sponsoring the arts in Houston the gays were in and
out of our house so often it looked like a fairy’s nest where they were
breeding. Our home was decorated by a bonded couple who were world
famous, and they spent our money like it was fresh spring-fed branch
water. When we threw benefit parties to raise money for some charity or
the Philharmonic, half the damn guest list was gay men and women, and
believe thee me, everyone knew which team everyone played for, who the
pitchers and catchers were, and who the pinch hitters were. They were
not just hanger-ons either. They didn’t come just to be seen and eat
the food; many were wealthy and were our most generous benefactors.
They were men and women of the arts with high political and social
“It never ceases
to amaze me, how some evangelical who climbed the social ladder quickly
learned, if they were going to be successful, they couldn’t pull out
their bible and give an impromptu sermon on who could bed whom and what
would not be tolerated by them, their god, or Jesus. They were the very
image of hypocrisy. Like the Roman god Janus, they wore two faces; one
to the party and a more vicious, hate filled face to the public. Over
the years, we weeded out the despicable two-faced bastards; they just
didn’t get invited and the 'in’ crowd shunned the parties they
attended. It was a standing joke there was either polite society or the
low-life bottom feeding scumbags.
“Of course, we
got the reputation of being godless liberals, but it wore well with us
as we were both raised Democrats and didn’t jump the fence to embrace
the failed actor Ronnie Ray-gun’s Corporate Rebiblicanism. We did
pretty well until that little two-faced weasel Bush got into office as
Governor; a different form of carpebagger from the North disguised as a
'good ole' boy.' He played up the prejudice against gays serving in Ann
Richard’s cabinet while the little hypocrite himself sucked more cowboy
cock under the governor’s desk than the temple whores of Sodom. Dubya
Bush always reminded me of the TV character Beverley Leslie, the arch
nemesis of Karen in the “Will and Grace” series played by the gifted
actor, Leslie Jordan,” Zelma said with considerable disdain, “At least
Mr. Jordan isn’t a hypocrite. He’s a proud cocksucker and funny as Aunt
Polly’s dead cat she used for a hairpiece,” she added.
Abigal and Kate
were laughing so hard at Zelma they were holding each other. Billy
guffawed and shook his head. Nick and Boomer joined him. There was a
moment of silence and Billy was looking at the Bluebonnets along the
roadside when he felt a tickle in his mind. << That chu,’ Tonto?
>> he asked.
Kemosabe, >> Nick replied, << Boomer damn near knocked me
out the side of the van elbowing me to contact you and tell you about a
conversation he overheard while you was playing the organ before they
started the service. Them ladies decided to ask you today before dinner
why they can’t have wings since Roz got a pair? >> Nick explained.
dear, what shall I do, Nick? >> Billy panicked without thinking.
wanna’ eat dinner, don’t chu’? >> Nick replied, and he and Boomer
laughed. They got Billy laughing, too. The ladies looked at them like
they were daft.
"They do that
from time to time. They have their little jokes they share," Kate said.
The ladies laughed.
“Grandma, when is Easter this year?” Billy asked.
“This is the
last weekend in March and Easter Sunday is late this year. It’s not
until the third weekend in April. That’s three weeks from today. Why?”
“Going to church
today, I thought it might be nice if we got ever’body together, go to
church for Easter Sunday, and come back to the ranch for dinner,” Billy
granddaddy was alive we always made a big day of the holidays and
invited lots of people to the ranch, but after Daws died, it was only
me, you, and Nathan. The most we’d do is have Vox out and invite the
Garretts over,” Kate said.
“Let’s do it up
right this year and invite our family and friends over for the weekend,
have them go to church with us, including most of our Irin cowboys and
cowgirls. We can come back to the ranch and celebrate the final
fledging of our family members,” Billy said with added enthusiasm.
There was a stone-cold silence in the van you could have carved into an
ice sculpture. Billy heard Nick and Boomer suck in air and were holding
their breath like they were bracing themselves for the backlash of a
more minutes of silence, Kate spoke in a small voice, “That would be
nice, Billy,” she said without nuance.
another prolonged silence only to be broken by Zelma Jane, “So much for
backing up our Tiger Lady,” she declared and laughed.
Abigale exclaimed in mock indignation, and they laughed together. Nick
and Boomer joined them and got Billy laughing.
“Did you ladies
really think we were going to leave you out?” Billy asked.
“We wondered why
we couldn’t be included when Roz and Rox got wings,” Kate said.
been discussed. You got your choice, Ladies. Next weekend or the
following weekend,” Billy said.
“I got to get
back to Houston with Tom, Abigale, and the boys this evening, but
depending on their schedule, either weekend would be good for me,”
“I’ll have to
talk with Tom, but if he can get away, next weekend works for me,”
will be fine with me, Billy,” Kate said.
know, and we’ll work around your schedules,” Billy said.
“Can you really
enhance us and give us wings, Billy?” Kate asked.
them Irin folks gimme’ the complete package on our last trip. I can
make my own ‘home-brew’ angels. I may have a few problems until I get
the hang of it. You ladies might end up looking like turkey buzzards,
but at least you’ll have a set of wings,” Billy declared and laughed.
Nick and Boomer laughed at their master having fun with the ladies.
“Is he telling
us the truth, Nick?” Zelma demanded.
cowboys and the truth, Ms. Redbone,” Nick replied and got a laugh from
“I certainly do
know about cowboys and the truth, Angel Nick! I want a black pair,
Master Billy -- solid black -- maybe with some white tips down the
backside of the wings for a formal accent,” Zelma Jane said.
“Do they come in
pastel decorator colors, Master Billy?” Abigale asked and got a laugh
before we begin, Ladies. You shouldn’t worry none. If you’re to be a
part of my family, I damn well want you to be the the finest looking
angels I can create,” Billy said.
As Billy pulled
into the gate to the ranch, Mary Rutherford with her mother-in-law,
Evelyn, drove in behind them. Evelyn Rutherford was holding her
granddaughter. Billy waved to his guard bulls and they immediately
started to part to let the two vehicles pass. They drove on up to the
compound and found everyone outside sitting in the warm sun exercising
their wings. The Sun Bears were attempting to lift off the ground and
gliding for a few feet like a flock of young birds trying to leave the
nest. It certainly wasn’t your usual ranch crowd. Billy was stunned by
the variety of color combinations of each individual’s wings.
Interestingly enough the Sun Bears’ wings were all the same color, a
bright golden yellow color which matched their fur patterns perfectly.
Zelma Jane declared they looked like paintings or statues of baroque
cherubims, only they weren’t fat little babes.
Breedlove’s wings were a dark gray color with no variation. Ramrod
Reed’s wings were almost a burnt orange color with a touch of red to
them. They blended well with his ginger hair and mustache. Tom
McMartin’s wings were an almond color with just a hint of brown. The
most startling to Billy was Vox’s wings. They were almost exactly the
same silver-gray color with the same black tips on the ends of the
feathers outlining the backside of his wings like Elmer’s. Billy
wondered if them ancients saw Elmer and Vox as a mated pair and gave
them that distinction to announce to anyone they belonged to each
other. Billy's suspicion was confirmed when he caught sight of Buck and
Hank. Their wings were exact duplicates of each other. They were both a
light brown with darker brown, almost chocolate tips on the back
Tron and Nathan had wings just alike and so did Enoch and Moss. The men
looked very handsome in their wings, but Roz was probably the most
spectacular of all. Her wings were multicolored from bright greens,
yellows, and changing into beautiful purples on the tips and down her
backside. She looked like a human version of an exotically plumed bird
of paradise or a rare Amazon parrot.
“I want a set of
wings similar to Roz’s, Master Billy,” Abigale said.
“I still want
black with white tips,” Zelma said.
for me, Billy, so I can tell everybody, I did see a puddy-tat,” Kate
said and giggled like a school girl.
The kids came
running up to Billy followed by a stampede of Sun Bears. He squatted
down on his boots and gave each one a hug and a kiss. Randy was last,
and Billy stood with him in his arms. “H’it ain’t fair, Cowboy Billy,
us kids gotta’ wait until poohbeartea to get our wings,” he lamented.
Billy asked, “I like that, Cowboy,” he said and laughed, “When the time
comes, us Pooh-bears will have us a nice picnic, an Edwardian riparian
feast, down by the riverside. We will have tea, lemonade, watercress,
and cucumber sandwiches. Together we will sit down and discuss the
situation. We will speak of cabbages and kings and whether pigs have
wings. It will be far more civilized than the the old birds-n-bees
song and dance routine what don’t make no sense to kids no ways. What
has the birds-n-bees got to do with us cowboys? I agree with you, h’it
ain’t fair you should have to wait, but think of it as a coming of age
or a graduation from being a kid to become a young man and a fully
fledged cowboy angel. Don’t despair.
You’ll still have almost as much power as them others, it just won’t be
as strong -- which, might be a good thing until you learn enough from
life experience to be ready for such power. Look how much you and your
brothers helped with the fledging. I’m proud of you, and you should be
proud of yourselves. Besides, look at them fine big protectors you men
got. Not every boy your age can claim they got an eight foot, four
hun’nert pound buddy to hunker down with and sleep peacefully on a cold
winter’s night,” Billy told Randy loud enough for the others to hear.
“Your sister was a valuable help cleaning up the mess afterward and
seeing to those who might be uncomfortable. She never once complained,”
Billy said while giving Kayla a big hug and bussed a kiss on her cheek.
Kayla giggled and hugged him back.
Pollux came out of the barn. They were working on a project for their
master under Hank and Buck’s supervision. It was the first glimpse of
them Billy got since they were fully fledged. They saw their master,
smiled real big, and started walking toward him like two old cowboy
angels who copied the cowboy walk so well it was second nature to them.
Billy laughed at their easy down home look in their western clothes and
their magnificent wings. “Am I beginning to see a pattern in my
family’s wings?” Billy asked his cowboy angels.
“I think them
two were shown a little preference according to their talents,
Kemosabe,” Nick replied and continued, “Look at Roz’s wings and compare
them with the twins; altogether different in color but outstanding in
beauty,” Nick backed his assumption. Cass and Poly’s wings were pure
white but a line of feathers which ran the length of the back of their
wings were a bright shinning gold color. It made them look absolutely
heavenly and visually might imply they were most high in their master’s
ranks. Billy couldn’t gainsay that. He loved his two halflings as much
as the rest of his family. You can’t play music with someone time after
time without building an unspoken bond that transcends mere
friendships. Your souls become a revolving door of understanding and
shared love for each other.
“I guess your
talents paid off, my beautiful angels. Them Grigori and Irin did you up
proud. Are you happy with your wings, Gentlemen?” Billy asked and
“More than we
can express, Master Billy,” Cass replied and Poly nodded his head.
Billy hugged and
kissed each one and complimented them on their appearance. “You men fit
the title of ‘cowboy angels.’ I’m proud of you,” he said.
“We love you,
Master Billy,” Poly said wiping away a tear.
“I know you do,
and I couldn’t love you more; although I sometimes get busy and forget
to tell you often enough,” Billy said.
was one of many days Billy would remember the rest of his life as a
perfect and wonderful time. He couldn’t be more happy and proud of the
family he was forming, and they seemed just as pleased and happy with
their prospects for the future. After lunch Billy and his three
protector angels transported everyone to Nick’s ship to introduce them
to the village people and the great Shedu’s. Those who fledged went as
they were with their handsome wings and made quite a stir with the
village people. Billy made a small announcement that the winged folks
with him were just like him, who found favor with two ancient races
what gifted them with special powers and a pair of wings.
introduced to the great Shedu Beauford and his several co-protectors;
Raza, the dragon man; Leon, the lion man; Pan, the panther man; Joe,
the naked blue giant humanoid and his bonded mate, Crunch, a lime green
half ork/humaniod hybrid who was also naked. By any discerning
decorator’s sense of order, be it whimsical or classic, there was no
doubt their color combinations was a major fail; however, in the dark
at the height of passion, all flesh becomes the same color -- hot. Joe
and Crunch didn’t seem to notice and loved each other passionately --
almost too passionately.
To use a more
descriptive word like 'clash’ would weaken the following: their species
have a mating cycle built into their DNA of once a year when it would
grow strong, overtake them, and became an almost insatiable drive. For
three days, their brains fly out the window, they literally go bat-shit
crazy with knuckle dragging, frothing at the mouth, spittle slinging
raw animal lust for each other and are plunged into a vortex of
unmentionable passion the villagers named, for lack of a better term,
'Close-cauldron.’ (Not to be confused with the Vulcan mating ritual,
'Pan-far.’) During those three days they were locked into a large arena
built of large stone blocks to rival stone henge. The arena was
carefully built with high sides and only one entrance from which there
was no escape when the great heavy cast iron panels were closed. The
huge metal doors would not be opened again until they fought tooth and
nail battling back and forth for dominance. When the mating madness
passed, and Beauford announced the winner, the triumphant one would
place the heavy chain of subservience around his defeated partner’s
neck, urinate upon the loser’s body, and command him to drink the rest
from his bladder directly from his penis. It was a ritual of ultimate
humiliation to reinforce their positions.
could tell when Joe and Crunch were approaching their Close-cauldron
state because their skin colors darkened like meat simmered in a hot
pan; Joe became a deep blue color and Crunch became a dark green olive
drab. When it happened, they knew to get to the arena and await the
inevitable. The villagers would stock a non-fight zone with food and
drink for the two combatants. The giants ate and drank very little
during the period, just enough to sustain them and keep them alert.
Joe and Crunch
made the wrestlers of the WWF look like wimps, wrestled nude, and
between bouts fucked and sucked each other in a never ending orgy of
raw animal sexual rut until they were exhausted. They were the living
reality of a fantasy every young gay man who follows professional
wrestling conjures for himself. There were viewing stands built of more
solid stone around the arena similar to a small Roman Colosseum. The
giant’s mating ritual became the major yearly sporting event for the
villagers and great wagers were made based on how many times they would
mate in their seventy-two hour sado-masochistic knock-down-drag-out
sexual marathon smack down. (Similar to what one might expect to occur
in your average Texas redneck trailer park on a hot Sunday afternoon.)
Bets were made
on who penetrated the other first; the last to throw a fuck into the
other; who would fuck the other the longest; how many times they
fucked, and how many times they gratified each other orally. Large sums
of money changed hands over Joe and Crunch’s matings. To anyone else,
it might seem a bit of an excessive bother to put up with such strange
creature’s mating habits, but they were two of Nick’s most devoted
protectors and he felt meeting their needs was a larger win for
himself, the giants, his crew, the villagers, and protectors. More than that,
under controlled circumstances, they were also great fun and highly
stimulating for the villagers to watch. More of the village women got
pregnant during the annual Close-cauldron fights than any other time of
year. The opening fight of the giants for dominance was always the main
attraction and no one missed it. The spectator areas were filled to
capacity, and it wasn’t just a men only sport. The women loved the
giants and threw flowers at their favorite in the midst of battle.
Joe and Crunch
were both from strong male oriented societies and were trained from an
early age they must fight off all other males to mate with the female
of their choice; however, they weren’t males fighting off other males
for the favor of a female. If two of their species of the same gender
decided to mate, they did away with fighting the other males and fought
each other to see who would become the dominant partner and who would
be forced to be passive until the next Close-cauldron. Their own races
didn’t consider the phenomenon as strange or ‘queer’ and easily
adjusted their expectations. The dominance and submission cycle lasted
one complete year until their next mating ritual smack down, when they
would enter the arena again for ‘Close-cauldron’ and battled it out to
establish who was most dominant and would be on top for the next twelve
months. Since Joe was larger than Crunch, he was thought to have an
edge on his younger mate. Crunch was more muscled, faster than his
bigger companion, and won their last Close-cauldron competition.
Joe wore the
symbolic heavy chain of submission for nearly a year, and as was their
custom, Crunch would lead Joe into the arena every thirty days, command
him to kneel before him and would publicly reassert his dominance over
his partner. Crunch would urinate all over Joe’s big body, then command
him to drink what was left in his bladder. Joe had no choice but to do
as his master commanded. There was no contesting his loss to his mate
in the arena during the last period of ‘Close-cauldron.’ If he didn’t
like being a sub to Crunch, he would have to defeat him in the arena
the next time.
The first fight
usually set the pace for the many couplings during the period of the
Close-cauldron, depending on the strength and cunning of the winner.
After several hard-won fights and forced submissions, the battles
became more symbolic than fierce; but, not always. Once in a while, the
giant who lost the first round, if his dominant mate wasn’t careful and
maintained complete control of the situation, could be overthrown and
the sub would dominate for the rest of the mating. That very thing
happened to Joe in their last Close-cauldron encounter. He became too
confident he had the win in the bag when Crunch upset him, gained the
upper hand, and held it in a death grip until he was called the winner
by Beauford. It was an unexpected upset. There in lay the biggest prize
of all among the betting public. An upset in dominance between them was
a major bet, but bigger yet, was if the original dominate male regained
the upper hand and finished out the session on top.
When the mating
period was over and Beauford gave judgment, only then, the great doors
were opened, the villagers rushed into the arena to deck them with
garlands and necklaces of exotic fragrant flowers to crown their heads
and gird each lover’s neck, to lead them in exhausted triumph from the
arena to the post-ritual-mating tub they prepared for them. The huge
tub was filled to overflowing with hot water laced with sweet essences
and spices. There they would pamper them with strong drink, sweetmeats,
and scrub them down singing songs about how well their coupling went.
Much hoop-la and admiration was spent on the village giants, while Joe
and Crunch cuddled and cooed like two newly mated turtle doves building
their nest. They would kiss the wounds they inflicted on each other,
and whisper soft words about how deep their love was. They would be
fine for another twelve months. Why ‘twelve’ since they weren’t from
Earth? Twelve is a sacred number throughout the universe. Twelve, its
double, its multiple, its triple, its square, and many more are all
important numbers. There are even some culture’s mathematics and
language based on the number twelve.
* * * * * * *
Those in Billy’s
family who never met anyone other than humans were enthralled meeting
the different species; Oatie Breedlove in particular. “My God in
heaven, this ship is another world -- possibly a microcosm of what’s
out there in the universe waiting for us to grow up and go out and find
them. My mind has been blown so many times this weekend by what I’ve
witnessed and the new experiences we’ve been introduce to, I feel like
a popcorn machine about to blow it’s top and spill my brains all over
the place. I’ve gone through more than a single metamorphosis. I’m
still a human by birth, but together, as a family, we’ve stepped into a
new world. Our worlds will never be the same again, and I’m glad for
it,” he said to his granddad, Vox, and Perry Reed.
“I have to
agree, Son,” Elmer said shaking his head, “Life has suddenly become
worth the effort to strive to live again in these interesting times. I
never understood the term 'reborn’ until this weekend,” he said.
posed Buster Tate standing close to the Breedloves, “T’ain’t nothing
compared to what we seen on them two other planets we visited with
Master Billy last Friday e’nin. I cain’t even describe the wonders and
different people we saw and met in the couple of days we was there,”
“How could you
spend several days and return the same evening?” Oatie asked.
dilations. Don’t ask me for an explanation. I don’t understand it, but
I lived it, and I know it happened,” Buster answered.
“I hope to go
with Master Billy to see for myself sometime,” Oatie said.
“I’m sure you
will. They love to meet new family members, and they will treat you
like visiting royalty,” Vox consoled Oatie.
curious about everything. “How did the Close-cauldron arena come about,
Captain Nick,” Oatie asked.
“The first time
them two giants went into Close-cauldron rut, Joe and Crunch went
bat-shit crazy and damn near destroyed the village. We noticed changes
in them but never thought much about it until they started foaming at
the mouth and arguing with each other. The first battle happened
followed by three days of fighting back and forth, sexual couplings in
public square or wherever they happened to be, leaving come trails and
pecker tracks everywhere to clean up. We thought we were going to have
to tranquilize them until one of their buddies, a dwarf Ork, told us
about their male mating rut period of three days once a year. You’d be
amazed how much damage them two giants can do in seventy-two hours.
After it was over and they settled down, they felt awful about the
destruction. They were like two bad little boys, sorry for their
misdeeds, and promised to work just as hard to rebuild what they tore
down. They made good on their promise and worked their big butts off to
make things right. I knew if we were going to keep them, something had
to be done. The villagers were the ones who came up with the idea of
making their annual rut a sporting event under controlled conditions. I had Beauford
build the great stone Close-cauldron arena before their next rutting
season, and since that time, their annual ritual mating battles have
become a great sporting event. It’s worked out fine. Once the dominant
male wins and is recognized, the other becomes his sexual slave and
serves his master’s needs for the year. What they won’t tell you is,
they swap out with each other on just about everything, but the winner
of the Close-cauldron fight calls the shots. Right now Joe wears the
heavy chain of submission to his mate, Crunch,” Nick explained.
said Oatie, “When is the next Close-cauldron?” he asked.
weeks. The weekend after Easter,” Nick replied.
“Can we attend?”
“Better ask my
master, Master Oatie,” Nick replied.
“Can we, Master
Billy?” Oatie asked like an excited kid.
“Let me take it
up with my slaves, and I’ll get back to you,” Billy replied.
“We don’t mind,
Master Billy, we don't remember much about it afterwards anyway,”
Crunch said for him and Joe, which was his right.
“There, you have
your answer, Doc Breedlove,” Billy said.
* * * * * * *
took his guests to visit the great female Shedu, Madame Spartza.
Everyone was rightfully impressed by the large lady Shedu. She was most
gracious and had no fear of mingling with her major protectors, Master
Billy, Captain Nick, and Balthazar present. She hadn’t yet been
formally introduced to Beauford so he didn’t accompany Master Billy’s
family to her quarters in the castle. However, both their powers of
creation and intuitive forecasting futures of the time line was
increased logarithmically just by being in close proximity to each
other. The great stone block arena it took Beauford several weeks to
complete, could now be done within the blink of an eye.
wearing their new wings, and Madame Spartza was quite taken with them.
She thought they were quite resplendent. They stirred memories of her
experiences at the courts of the earliest Kings of history when
artificially created angels like Nick, Balthazar, and Clyde were
everywhere, coming and going, and they all seemed to be concerned for
her as a young calf. They pledged themselves to her well-being while
she was growing up. The many wings hearkened back to a time in her life
when she felt secure. She had many fond memories of the winged people.
She easily made the connection the ancients on Retikki Prime and Fort
Adam Lear were gearing up to intervene in the dynamics of a rogue
planet what was on the verge of becoming a most unsettling place to
Spartza was particularly enchanted by the Sun Bears and their
enhancements. They were able to chat with her mind to mind. They told
her of the wonderful things they observed at Master Billy’s ranch and
the friends they made in such a short period of time. The Sun Bears
knew they were going to stay on the ship in their rooms in the castle
for a while and become company and companions for Madame Spartza.
Everyone was chatting and getting to know each other when one of
Captain Nick’s bridge officers sent him a message there was a gathering
of life forms outside the cave entrance where the ship was hidden.
“Put it on
visual, Ensign,” he ordered his communication’s officer.
large holographic screen appeared in the courtyard of the castle and
showed the Bigfoot and daddy long-legs Billy’s family saw watching the
Saturday afternoon barnyard concert. “Looks like we got visitors,
Kemosabe,” Nick said to his master.
“Well, lets go
out and greet them. Who wants to go out with us to meet the local crew
of wild Bigfoot and daddy long-legs?” Billy asked. Almost every hand
went up. “I must warn you, they don’t bathe very often, and they might
be a bit ripe,” Billy said. There was some talk among them but only a
couple of hands went down. The rest wanted to go. Billy and his four
main cowboy angels transported everyone into the cave and there was
much excitement among the huge watchers and their daddy long-legs
brothers. When Billy led his family to the mouth of the cave, and they
could see the number of winged people coming forth, they whispered
among themselves and suddenly looked uneasy like they were on the verge
of running. Billy stopped, smiled, and raised his hand for his people
to stop. He raised his wings to their full spread, and his cowboy
angels joined him. It was almost a chain reaction as the others
automatically raised their wings with him.
exclaimed in a normal tone of voice as a comfortable greeting to the
watchers and long-legs.
“Hosanna in the
highest!” answered his family and the watchers as one voice. They were
instantly united in purpose.
The crowd of
wild watchers and long-legs were in such awe they were overwhelmed by
what they saw before them, and they were sore afraid. They suddenly
fell to their knees to prostrate themselves before the magnificence of
the winged people. Billy was mildly amused by it all, but it also
touched him deeply these creatures and men felt the need to show their
respect. He was impressed their bodies did not announce them. Somehow
they managed to clean themselves before approaching his family. The
watchers were not unaware of the oder barrier.
we have come out to meet you and welcome you to our ranch,” Billy said.
They looked around at each other and saw one of the biggest of them,
the one called 'Catfish’ rise and they followed his lead. “Do you
represent this group of watchers and long-legs, Catfish?” Billy asked.
They muttered their approval for Catfish to represent them.
“I can speak for
us, Master Billy,” Catfish replied.
“Why have you
come forth after so many years of living distant and apart from
mankind?” Billy asked. He already knew the answer to his question but
wanted to find out if they knew and to confirm their motives and intent.
“Some of us were
called to our other home world to stand before the Lord High
Councilors, and we were commanded to tell our brothers the time has
come to join with their representatives on Earth to become greater than
we are. A dozen of us watchers made the trip,” Catfish said in a
booming bass voice.
“May I see a
show of hands of the watchers who accompanied Catfish?” Billy asked
raising his own hand to prompt them. Twelve of the largest males raised
their huge furry hands as Billy counted them and made a mental note of
their faces. “Thank you, and what else did they tell you, Catfish?”
“We, and our
daddy long-leg brothers, are to become your slaves. We were told to bow
down to you, to recognize you as our master, and offer ourselves to you
so you may include us in your plans to create a new society here on
Earth,” Catfish replied.
“You were not
expecting winged men and women?” Billy asked.
“No, sir, Master
Billy, but it makes sense. We have heard stories and rumors of angels
who are men and men who have become angels. We always thought it had
something to do with religious beliefs, but we have none,” Catfish
replied, “I think most of the daddy long-legs have lost faith in man’s
religions,” he added.
his wings and everyone else followed his lead. Billy removed his
clothes, his leather harness, and stood naked before his family, the
beasties, and the long-legs. They watched in further awe as he morphed
into an almost exact copy of Boomer. Many in his own family never saw
him morph and gasped in surprise. “Sweet Jesus,” he heard Elmer
exclaim, “My master weren’t kidding about becoming a Bigfoot,” he said.
The watchers and
long-legs were once again wowed by Billy’s abilities. He walked up to
Catfish and gave him a big hug. There were tears in the monster’s eyes
as he hugged Billy back. “You and your family of watchers and long-leg
brothers are free and welcome to roam and forage on the land of the
ranchers you see here before you today, but there will be other
ranchers joining us, and you will be welcome on their land as well, as
long as you don’t kill their livestock or destroy any crops. Our
immediate group has always looked out for you and left food for you
during the worst of winters and droughts. We will continue to do so. If
I assign you as slaves to other ranchers, you are to understand they
are part of my family, and you will accept them as your masters and
family. Is that understood?” Billy asked.
“It is, sir, we
were told the same on Retikki Prime, Master Billy,” Catfish replied.
“Good, I just
wanted to confirm everyone understands,” Billy said, “The daddy
long-legs among you are welcome to join our family and reap the
benefits of living a little more comfortably, but no one will be forced
to do so until he is ready. Then you must come to me, prostrate
yourself before me, and voice your petition to become my slave and have
a closer walk with my family. When you do, we will find a place for
you, and accept you into our greater gathering. We will expect you to
live by our rules, standards, and work ethic. In return we will provide
you with food, shelter, and companionship -- that is, if you want it.
Nothing will be forced on you, but one begets the other,” he added.
“Catfish, I want
you and your light colored blond companion to become the slaves and
protectors of Master Elmer Breedlove and his grandson, Oatie. Is
‘Blondie’ your mate?” Billy asked like there was no shame should
Catfish answer in the positive.
Billy, he is my younger brother by birth. We had the same mother and
birth-dad, sir. He has no name,” Catfish replied.
“He does now,”
Billy said and laughed, “Welcome to the family, Blondie,” Billy said
and the big critter smiled. “I need one more watcher for a protector
and companion for Ramrod Perry Reed. Come forward, Master Reed,” Billy
said. Perry Reed got a big smile on his face and came to Billy’s side.
“Do you see one out there what catches your fancy, Ramrod?” Billy asked.
“The big black
one standing behind Blondie,” Perry Reed said and pointed to the huge
black furred watcher.
“Do you have a
name?” Billy asked the watcher.
“No, sir,” he
replied, “We were told our masters would name us,” he added.
“Are you bonded
to another one of these watchers as your mate?” Billy asked.
Billy. Blondie and I are mates,” he said.
“Well, we can’t
break up a bonding. Do you have a bonded mate, Catfish?” Billy asked.
Billy, the small reddish brown watcher with the high voice we call
'Mouse,’” Catfish replied to much laughter.
“Well, he is
smaller than most, but he ain’t no mouse, that’s for dang sure,” Billy
said and everyone laughed, “Okay, Blondie and, you Blackie, are to give
yourselves to Master Reed. Catfish, you and Mouse, are to do the same
with the Breedloves,” Billy ordered.
Master Billy,” they replied.
Billy went on to
let Tron and Moss pick a couple for their ranch and he had Ludo pick a
close friend for the Rutherford ranch. Billy didn’t assign any
long-legs. He left it open for them to approach him, then he would work
with them. Billy went on to explain he needed volunteers for milking
once a week, and since they seemed to enjoy the Saturday afternoon
barnyard concerts, afterward they could come to the back of the other
barn and be milked. The following week
he had twenty-three watchers to milk. Billy had more watcher milk than
he knew what to do with, but none was wasted. Others began to drink it
instead of cow’s milk and reaped the benefits.
watched the daddy long-legs with the leather face mask at the very back
of the group as he closely observed everything Billy and his family
did. At the end of their gathering, Billy morphed back to his
cowboy-angel persona. The kids were surrounding him as he put his
clothes on. Neither the boys nor Kayla seemed embarrassed or put off by
Billy’s nakedness. After he was fully clothed, Billy instinctively
reached down and picked up Randy, gave him a big hug, and stole a kiss.
Billy watched 'Leather Face,’ as he came to think on him, and could see
him watching with keen interest. Above the chatter of all the minds
there, Billy could feel great sadness within Leather Face. He sent a
mental feeler out to him -- not an attempt to contact, but a feeling of
concern, warmth, and an offer of empathy. Billy felt him stiffen, saw
him bolt from the back of the crowd, and vanish into the thickets of
the mesquite and scrub oak. Later he caught a glimpse of him forging
the James River to put the water between him and Billy’s mind. Leather
Face turned on the other side, looked back once to see Billy walk into
the cave still holding Randy, and watched them vanish to return to his
slave’s spaceship he heard the others talk about. Tears filled his
Billy and his
family spent a couple of hours learning to drop their wings and
re-fledge again. Between him and his cowboy posse of angels, they made
sure everyone, including the Sun Bears learned how to de-wing and wing
up again. He told them the length of time they could go without their
wings, but they must wear them for a couple of hours several times a
week; just get into a routine and habit. When you’re home alone,
relaxing with your family, wear your wings until bedtime. Try sleeping
with them. He told them they would be amazed what a good night’s rest
of peaceful dreamless sleep they could get while wearing their wings.
village people gathered their instruments and played for them in the
square, Billy’s family transported back to the ranch. Everyone was
ready for a light supper and had to go their separate ways to start
their week. The Rutherford’s left, but Randy and Ludo stayed behind
with Cowboy Billy. Ludo was too large to transport in the Rutherford’s
SUV. Mary agreed to call Billy after the ladies got home, and he and
his posse would transport Randy and Ludo over to their ranch.
got ready to leave. Rory and Calhoun were devastated they had to leave
Caesar behind. Billy assured them he would be comfortable in the loft
of the new barn and he would have company. Another Bigfoot brother
would be staying with him along with a couple of Billy’s Irin cowboys.
Billy suggested the McMartins leave some clothes behind in their room,
and when they came back the next weekend, Tom could transport them
instead of having to drive. Tom didn’t feel confident enough with his
abilities and wanted some time to practice. Billy understood. He didn’t
get it right the first time, either; Nick had to come looking for him.
Zelma Jane was a basket case saying goodbye to everyone especially
Kate, the other ladies she had come to love, but most of all to the
four cowboy angels who gave her life back to her. She was a mess; but,
a happy mess.
Buster, Doctor Oatie, and Perry Reed departed for their ranches and
promised to be back the following weekend for the lady’s fledging.
Oatie was fascinated by his enhancements and almost hourly found he
could do things he never could before. While he was an exceptionally
intelligent and dedicated young man with few vices, nothing ever seemed
to come easy for him. He had to work his tits off to be the best, but
he had more than enough natural talent as a student and athlete to
excel. The driving force behind him was two fold; his undying love and
admiration for his granddad and his internal hatred for the life he was
forced to live before he came under his granddad’s sphere of influence.
After that, his granddad provided the means, and with the exception of
his younger brother, Oatie’s deep need to separate himself from his
estranged family provided the fuel.
foreclosed on his family’s ranch, Oatie only occasionally ran into
members of his family. In a small town it’s almost inevitable you will
run into everyone sooner or later. He would be ignored by his mother
and sisters, but his dad would exchange a few pleasantries with him.
Oatie still had feelings for his dad, but he suppressed them. He
wouldn’t respond to him further than a brief discussion of the
weather. When Oatie had to put Elmer in the rest home, he thought his
ex-family would begin to say bad things about him. His mother, Janice,
had a few choice words against Elmer but never said a word about Oatie.
His dad, Pete, told Oatie he knew he didn’t have no choice in the
matter. He couldn’t work, run a ranch, and take care of his granddad,
too. It was the only personal conversation Oatie had with his dad since
his old man kicked him out.
Over the years,
Pete drifted aimlessly from job to job and woman to woman. He became
known as the town drunk and was finally thrown out of the one drinking
honky-tonk on the outskirts of town, beyond the city limits. He got
into a fight with some younger cowboy and the sturdy buckaroo whipped
Pete’s ass. He was hurt pretty bad. The owner of the joint knew Oatie
was Pete’s son and called him to come get him. Oatie tried to get out
of it, but his granddad was still living with him and urged him to go
to his dad. Oatie did and Pete was a mess. Oatie brought him home and
kept him in the bunkhouse with Jethro to watch over him. Oatie tended
his wounds and fed him while he went through alcohol withdrawal. They
didn’t talk much but Pete and his dad, Elmer, talked a lot. Elmer had a
way about him and was one of the only men who could get through to Pete.
Pete got better and after a month staying with Oatie and Elmer decided
it was time for him to leave. He made several attempts to talk with
Oatie, but he refused to respond to his dad. Pete was crushed
even more than before, but the time he spent with Elmer seemed to give
him a new backbone. He got a decent job on another ranch, stopped
drinking and associating with loose women. He became dedicated to his
job and began to put some money aside. He bought a sturdy second-hand
truck and drove into Brady once a week to spend some time with his dad.
That weekend he traveled to the rest home only to discover Oatie took
Elmer home with him, called the rest home Sunday morning and told
them Elmer would not be returning. Pete knew it would be the thing
Oatie would do if his dad was dying. Elmer made Oatie promise he would
die in his own bed.
* * * * * * *
goodbye to the family and Perry Reed, Oatie, Elmer, and Vox drove to
the Breedlove ranch in Vox’s SUV. Elmer told Vox he didn’t plan to let
him out of his sight from now on, he and Rox would just have to get
used to it. They assured the big bull nothing would make them happier.
Oatie was touched but laughed at them. They were like two high school
sweethearts; albeit, two unusual sweethearts. Elmer was the captain of
the football team and Rox was the petite cheerleader who would blush
and giggle at everything her big bruiser of a cowboy had to say.
To hear them cooing back and forth was enough to make one nauseous, but
Oatie’s sense of humor saw him through. They no sooner
walked into the house when the phone rang. Oatie answered, “Good
evening, Breedlove Ranch, Oatie speaking,” he said. There was brief
pause on the other end of the phone and Oatie knew immediately who it
was, “Pete?” he asked.
it’s me. Sorry to bother you, but I been trying to get you all day. I
drove to Brady this afternoon and got there about three. I didn’t think
to call ahead. They told me you came and got dad and called earlier
this afternoon and told them he wouldn’t be returning to the rest home.
They said he was in pretty bad shape. Is he all right? Is he about
to...?” Pete couldn’t bring himself to say the words.
“Shed his mortal
coil? Kick the bucket? Shuffle off to Buffalo?” Oatie said and started
“Well -- I
remember he said he wanted to die at home,” Pete said cautiously. He
could still hear Oatie laughing.
“I know, I’s
just fun’n with you, Pete. We’s over to the Daniel’s ranch yesterday
and most of the day today. He’s doing all right. So well, I ain’t
gonna’ take him back over there to that home. He’s home wiff’ me and
Vox and doing fine. He just needed to be around some of his people. Did
him a world a’ good. You wouldn’t recognize the old man, Pete. You
wanna’ talk with him?” Oatie asked.
“Shore! If’n it
wouldn’t be too much trouble to get him to the phone,” Pete said.
He’s walking again,” Oatie said, “Master Bull your son is on the phone.
He’s worried you’s in line at that big SprawlMart in the sky git’n
ready to check out,” Oatie said laughing.
“Ah, hell far,
gimme’ that piece of afterbirth Ma Bell couldn’t bury in the basement,”
Elmer bellowed and got a laugh from Oatie and Pete. Howdy, Son, I ain’t
ready to check out just yet. I got me a few years left, and I plan to
make the most of ‘em. Sorry I weren’t at the home today. It’s early.
You wanna’ drive over and visit a spell?” Elmer asked.
“Would it be all
right with Oatie?” Pete asked.
“I ain’t sure,
lemme’ ask. Oatie did you git them alligators in the moat rounded up
and locked away in their pens? Did you take down them booby traps in
the front yard to keep Pete at bay? Are them vicious hounds shut up in
the barn?” Elmer hollered to his grandson.
alli-ma-gator, Granddad, but what’s left is only little ones, and
they’s so old they’s toothless. They won’t hurt him none. They might
try’n gum him to death, but if he steps quick he can outrun them,”
Oatie replied playing the game. “You might wanna’ warn him about them
watch-geese. They ain’t none too friendly,” he added. Pete heard
someone else laugh.
company?” he asked.
“Oh, hell no!
Vox ain’t company, he’s family. This is his and his sister’s home as
long as I’m living here. C’moan over, Son, we’ll explain things to you.
You been out to see Flynn lately?” Elmer asked.
“Last week. I
took him out a cheeseburger, some fries, and a shake he wanted from the
DQ. He’s doing just a little better than you. I’ll leave now, Dad, and
see ya’ll in a little while,” Pete said.
“Look forward to
seeing you, Son,” Elmer said and handed the phone back to Oatie. “I
didn’t think you’d mind, Son,” Elmer said.
“You know I
don’t mind, Granddad. I see and talk with Pete ever’ now and then, but
we never talk about nothing personal; only about you and the ranch. I
don’t hate Pete, I just don’t think on him as my pa no more. He allowed
Janice to talk him into turning his back on me and inadvertently my
little brother. He made his choice, and I remind him of it ever’ time I
call him Pete. I know it bothers him, but he ain’t done much to fill
the potholes in the road between us. If he ever made an effort, and
didn’t try to use Janice for an excuse, I’d give him a break -- don’t
know how big a break, but I’d make an effort. It’s the least I can do
to have my main bull, my Bossman back in my life,” Oatie said. Elmer
grabbed him and engaged Oatie in a lip-lock what was considerably more
than just a grandfatherly kiss. It was a kiss of rebonding and
thanksgiving between them. Vox giggled and Oatie joined him. “Hosanna!”
said Oatie breathlessly.
“Hosanna in the
highest!” Elmer and Vox answered.
* * * * * * *
about thirty minutes later, and his dad met him at the door. The poor
man was devastated. His seventy-three year old father looked younger
than his son. Elmer opened his arms. Pete went to his dad and was
surrounded by two strong arms. He broke down into heartrending sobs.
Elmer did his best to soothe and calm his son. “There, there, ain’t
nothing to get all worked up about, boy. I just had an angel gimme’ a
few adjustments,” Elmer said like it was nothing.
“What are you
talking about? Nothing to get worked up about? Look at you! You’re
younger looking than I am, and Mr. Humana is younger looking than you.
I could swear Oatie looks ten years younger. How is it possible? What
the hell’s going on here?” Pete demanded.
“I thought you’d
be happy for me, Son,” Elmer held Pete away from him and looked into
“If’n it’s real,
and lasting, of course I’m happy for you. Everything’s changed. You got
all your teeth, and they’s perfect. So does Vox. I know Oatie was
having problems and paying a dentist out the ass to fix his
teeth. His are perfect, too. I’m happy for you men, but I can’t help
feel a little jealous. Look at my teeth. Talk about toothless
alligators,” Pete said and grinned. Oatie thought Pete’s grin made him
look like a jack-o-lantern what lost its candle. For the first time in
a long while, since Pete kicked Oatie out of his home, he had a
twinge of empathy for his biological father. There was more of
Pete in Oatie than he would like to admit; but, he felt absolutely no
sympathy for him. There is a difference.
Elmer told the
story of how he became involved with the Daniels many years ago, and
was promised by some aliens and watchers, the grandson of Daws Butler
Daniels would one day become a great leader with incredible powers
granted him after he reached maturity, and he would restore Elmer’s
life to him. The young man would need an elder master; a simple but
wise man of the Earth; a great bull; an everlasting father; a counselor
and confessor to a prince of peace. He will have dominion over all the
Earth and will come to power holding the hand of the devil in one hand
and the hand of him who maketh the seven stars and Orion in his other.
Elmer proceeded to tell his son everything. “You must never try
to tell anyone about these things, Son, until you see them come to
pass,” Elmer admonished him, “People will see us and wonder, but they
will not know until it is time for them to see clearly. If you try to
tell anyone, your tongue will cleave to the roof of your mouth. It will
remain there until you come to one of us, and we relax it for you;
however, we will know you have not kept your word and trespassed
against us. That would not be a good thing,” Elmer said firmly.
“Why are to
telling me all this? I ain’t got the best track record in the trust
department, Dad. Look what I done to my sons what trusted me to love
them unconditionally. One I ain’t heard from in years, and the other
who is gifted beyond measure what torments me with guilt; not because
he’s bad, but because he’s done everything right and worked his butt
off to become a respected pillar of the community who only tolerates
me. I lost your respect and few people in our little town will even
give me the time of day,” Pete lamented.
“Why are we
telling you these things, Son? To give you a second chance like we been
given. Now is your chance to set some things right, but to do so you
must understand what we tell you is true. We will not ask you to have
faith in us and accept what we say just because we say it’s true. We
don’t expect you to believe without proof what you can witness for
yourself. You complained about your teeth. Can you take care of Pete’s
teeth for him, Oatie?” Elmer asked.
“Be happy to,
Bossman. It would give me pleasure to put a bite back into my old man’s
mouth for a change,” Oatie replied and laughed, “Master Daniels done
taught me how. I don’t have to wing-up for that less’n ya’ont me to,”
“Be proud you’s
an angel, boy! Pete should know what his boy has become; it’s all
right, Oatie, I done cleared it with the master,” Elmer encouraged his
his Western shirt and threw it on the back of a chair. In a great flash
of light the young cowboy disappeared and reappeared as quickly, fully
fledged in his handsome new wings and heavy leather harness.
Pete exclaimed, “Did you men die in an accident and come back as
angels?” Pete asked, “That would explain a lot,” he added.
idea, but no cee-gar, Son. We been enhanced by two races of ancient
aliens what used to make angels artificially for other aliens to buy
from them. Wings is only one of the wonderful things they bestowed upon
us,” Elmer replied.
me, Pete, and open yore’ old pie hole,” Oatie ordered his dad.
Pete did as his
son told him. Oatie ran his forefinger around the old teeth in Pete’s
head, and they were gone in an instant with no blood or pain. The young
cowboy angel ran his finger around his dad’s gums again, and his mouth
was filled with a perfect set of gleaming white teeth. “Go look in that
mirror over there, Pete,” Oatie pointed to a mirror on the wall. Pete
slowly walked over to the mirror. He could feel a mouth full of teeth,
but he had to see. His teeth were perfect; better than the originals.
It made him look ten years younger.
calmed himself and sat down to talk with the men, Elmer told him he
would have a new brother and a new step-mother. Elmer and Oatie
explained Vox and Rox to Pete. The poor man was having a lot of new
information dropped in his lap, and it was almost overwhelming to him.
He was listening to what they were saying, but it was hard for him to
comprehend. They talked for a good while until Pete began to tire. He
had to get up early in the morning for work and said his goodbyes.
Oatie allowed his dad to hug him and kiss him on his cheek. Oatie shook
“You men got a
busy day planned for tomorrow?” Pete asked.
over to Mick Flynn’s and see what us band of cowboy angels can do to
restore him. He’s a good man and will make an excellent family member,
besides I love him like a brother,” Elmer said.
“You mean you
all got wings?” Pete asked.
“Yes, Son, we
all been enhanced,” Elmer replied, “But of the three of us, I think I
done got the most enhancements,” he added. Vox and Oatie nodded in
Pete left and
drove home in a daze. He could still feel his mouth filled with new
teeth, and he smiled. This time he didn’t look like a jack-o-lantern.
looked like an above average looking middle aged cowboy.
It was late.
Oatie, Elmer, and Vox decided to retire for the evening. Oatie and Vox
got busy and put clean sheets on Elmer’s large bed. Oatie went to his
room and went to bed. At two o’clock in the morning he breathed a deep
sigh and made a mental note to buy his granddad a new bed. He didn’t
get a lick of sleep from the bedspring concert he was treated to which
went on into the wee hours of the morning. It was like living next door
to a heavy metal rock enthusiast with a thousand watt amplifier except
the bed springs were more palatable to his ear and for the most part in
better tune. Elmer, the bull of the hill country, was riding the range
with his favorite little heifer and neither were quiet lovers. Oatie
could swear they were giving their all to make up for lost time and a
little more to invest for the future.
gave up and went to the bunkhouse to sleep in one of the extra bunks
near Jethro. Jethro was asleep in his own king size bed, but Oatie
didn’t want to give him the wrong idea by crawling in bed with his
slave. Naturally, Jethro woke up to the sound of his cowboy master
clomping around on the wood floors to ready one of the bunk beds. He
didn’t say much, but he was happy to have his master’s company. He
wanted to talk, and tested the water with a couple of questions. Oatie
wasn't ready to talk and 'make nice' with Jethro, and told him if he
still wanted to be his slave some changes must be made. Oatie told
Jethro he couldn’t live with uncertainty anymore.
Master Oatie, I didn’t mean to upset you by my lack of indecision. I
been that way all my life. I don’t know what I want or need out of
life, and while I’m happy with you as my master, I don’t feel secure. I
know you love me, but it don’t seem to be enough,” he lamented sadly.
“Not to worry,
slave, I’ve made arrangements for you to find out just what it is
you’re missing, and I plan to have it corrected,” Oatie said without
nuance, “Catfish and Mouse will be here tomorrow morning to gather you.
They are my new slaves and may be sharing the bunkhouse with you. You
will go naked with them down the river to the Daniel’s ranch. You may
wear your boots because your feet have become tender from wearing them.
They will take you to Master Billy Daniel’s and introduce you. You will
pay homage to Master Billy and give yourself to him. If you wish
to continue as my slave, you will honor me by showing him proper
respect and refer to him as Master Billy. You will remain at his ranch
until he releases you to return to me. Do you understand?” Oatie asked
firmly like he wouldn’t consider any argument.
Master Oatie. Thank you, sir,” he replied meekly. Was there a glimmer
of hope his master was taking control of the awkward situation between
them? Jethro could only hope. He felt like floundering fish out of
water making clumsy attempts to regain his balance.
* * * * * * *
The next week
was busy for Billy and his posse. They were short two men. Moss Garrett
and Enoch Redbone rode back to Houston in Tom’s limo. There was plenty
of room for everyone. Tom had a job for them on Tuesday. It would be
their first delivery as a team for Tom’s company. Tom planned on firing
Eustace Barger on Monday. While Barger kept his end of the bargain and
testified against Orville at his trial, Tom still didn’t want to keep
him. He figured Moss and Enoch could pick up enough from the other men
who worked for him, and they could always contact him if they had any
questions. Tom took into consideration Eustace cooperated with the
prosecution in getting a sentence of lifetime slavery for Orville. He
gave Barger severance pay, and promised he would give him a good
recommendation when he applied for another position. Eustace wasn’t
pleased, but he knew Tom was holding all the cards and held him by the
gonads. He took what he could get and left quietly.
returned to Houston, Tom drove Enoch and Moss to Enoch’s place where
his truck was parked. It was Enoch’s first time to return to his place
since Orville Higginbothem tried to kill him. It seemed strange to be
coming back to Houston when he came to think on the Daniel’s ranch as
his home. Moss didn’t see any problem. When they got set up, they could
transport from place to place. They would maintain a base in Houston,
but their hearts and home would be on the ranch. Moss told him to think
on both the Garrett and Daniels ranches as his home.
his installation of Irin cowboys with the Rutherfords. He didn’t have a
foreman to send with them, but he sent his right hand cowboy ramrod,
Andy, to get them settled and get things started. Andy was to bunk it
in the foreman’s house until Billy could find a replacement. He
explained to Andy he wanted him near him and wouldn’t leave him without
a ramrod and bossman. He wanted Andy to look for one of the Irin
cowboys to replace him when the time came. Billy wanted a freeman for
the ranch foreman or bossman. He told a small group of his cowboys, one
would be sent to him soon.
Buck and Hank
went with them to help Andy make arrangements for provisions or
anything else they might need. Buck and Hank calculated to the penny
what they thought the first month’s cost would be and Billy had his
staff of Dorcas and Dociean get them the money. Billy was impressed his
people were going to work to get things done with minimal supervision.
They came to him for the larger questions, but most of the problems
they took care of themselves. Billy planned to get one installation
done per week. The following week another fifteen Irin cowboys would be
installed on the Garrett’s ranch, and the next week fifteen more
on Perry Reed’s ranch. The week after that another thirty would be
installed on the Breedlove ranch. Oatie asked for fifteen extra to get
some major project done which went neglected due to lack of manpower.
One of the
larger bunkhouses on the Daniels ranch was complete and the second
would be complete by the end of the week. Billy was learning the powers
of the Shedu and beginning to use them for projects. He was developing
his mental powers to be in full contact with both when he needed their
assistance. The prefab buildings were already delivered, but getting
them to the cliff above the river and set into place would be a major
undertaking. Not with the Shedu’s. Billy simply showed them what he
wanted. Everyone stood back and watched as each building was gracefully
floated through the air like a great air yacht and lowered into place
on their foundations Billy’s cowboys made for them. Each pre-fab
bunkhouse would house thirty cowboys comfortably. The electricity and
plumbing was hooked up within hours and they were ready for occupancy.
“Do you need
more of these buildings?” Beauford asked.
on three more,” Billy replied.
They will be ready tomorrow morning,” Beauford said.
there were three perfectly matched buildings complete with foundations
plumbing and wiring setting along side the other two. The handful of
cowboys sleeping inside the first buildings never heard a sound. Each
bunkhouse would house thirty cowboys and Billy wanted them filled as
soon as possible to get more of his people morphed and productive. It
turned out to be one of the busiest and most productive weeks on the
Mouse delivered a naked Jethro to the door of the barn. Billy received
him and after milking Catfish and Mouse sent them on their way back to
their master. The morning was so chaotic, after Jethro paid homage to
Master Billy and gave himself to him, Billy welcomed him with a hug and
a kiss, handed him a clip board and told him to not leave his side.
Everywhere Billy went a naked Jethro was with him and Boomer. No one
paid Jethro any attention because he was naked and Jethro began to feel
more free to be the slave he felt he needed to be. He never saw anyone
with as much energy and enthusiasm as Master Billy Daniels who didn’t
just amble through the day. Jethro watched Billy attack every problem
like it was a giant stack of flapjacks, and he was a hungry woodsman.
By noon, Jethro’s tongue was hanging out just from following Billy
around with his clipboard. He likened Billy to a tornado he was
trying to chase down and lasso. The name ‘Pecos Bill’ kept coming to
Time for lunch,” Billy said to Jethro and took him to the big ranch
house. He got a bathrobe from a closet under the front stairs and threw
it to Jethro. “Cover yore’self for the ladies, slave,” Billy ordered
believe he would eat with his new master and his family. It was a
wonderful experience for the man. He never was around a family like the
Daniels who treated everyone with equal love and respect; even their
slaves. They asked Jethro questions, and he would respond as honestly
and politely as he could. The food was excellent and Jethro
concentrated on eating while listening to their conversations.
is Doc Oatie’s slave. He’s been having some identity problems and seems
to have come to a crisis. I volunteered to have him spend some time
with us to see if I can help him,” Billy said.
“Does he have to
remain naked?” Kate asked.
“Yes, for the
time being. He’s a slave whether he accepts it or not. He was once a
daddy long-leg, but gave himself to be Oatie’s slave when the Doc saved
his life. I think there’s some lingering questions in his mind if he
did it only to comply with the moral values of his accepted brothers,
them big watchers; much in the same way Nick and Boomer felt obliged to
give themselves to me after I saved their lives. He may be having
second thoughts, but Master Oatie has left it up to me and him to
decide. Jethro got over his shame of nudity while running wild. To
remain nude for a while is to remind him there is no shame in either;
nudity or being a slave. Other than ritual homage, he will not be
subjected to ridicule or physical abuse on this ranch. He will be
treated as a contributing member of our family,” Billy explained.
Billy’s words were wise, but he didn’t feel ashamed of being naked or
being Master Oatie’s slave. He was actually quite proud of being Doc
Oatie’s slave. Thinking on himself as Oatie’s slave defined him but not
enough. His problem was, Oatie treated him like a close friend or
companion and made few demands. He remembered Master Oatie’s words from
the night before: he couldn’t live with uncertainty. That was the
problem. Jethro felt like he was the one living with uncertainty.
Jethro didn’t understand his personality disorder of Asperger’s
syndrome, but he knew there was some major flaw in the way he perceived
“I offered to
keep Jethro for several days to observe him and get to know him. What
better way than to have him follow me around as my assistant and
‘go-for’ for several days. He gets to know me, and I get to know him.
He bonded with me as a surrogate master, but he understands his first
and strongest bond is with his master. A slave cannot be expected to
serve two masters; however, he can serve one at a time successfully,”
Jethro Quince for a week and had him follow him around. They found him
a bunk in the older bunkhouse near the main ranch house, and he came to
know the Billy’s other cowboy slaves. He was impressed by their work
ethic and devotion to Master Billy. Jethro was impressed by their pride
in belonging to the man and the Daniels family. He talked with Orville
Higginbothem several times and found himself almost envious of
Orville’s well defined role even though he was considered on the lowest
rung of the totem pole as a slave bereft of his freedom for punishment.
Jethro just couldn’t understand why.
* * * * * * *
Elmer called Buster Tate. “We need two extra cowboy angels for a job
today, Brother. You and that new boy of yours wanna’ give us a hand?”
“Sure, be happy
to oblige, but we ain’t got no transportation. I don’t know if my old
truck it still running, Bull,” Buster said.
“You got wings,”
“Yeah, but we
can’t go fly’n over the country side. Folks might see us and have a
stroke,” Buster said.
“Or, it could
make them suddenly remember they ain’t been to church in a spell,”
Elmer said and laughed, “Ain’t no problem, Brother, we’ll pick up you
men and take you along with us,” Elmer added.
“Fine. Ma’ boy’s
done gone to work, but ma’ other boy’s here riding herd on some rowdy
critters. We’ll be here wait’n for you,” Buster said.
“Be right there,
Brother,” Elmer said.
Vox drove his
SUV and there was room for two more. When they arrived at the Tate
ranch they went inside. Buster introduced Elmer to Everett and the two
of them bonded as friends immediately. Oatie wanted to check on Miranda
and the pups. He and Vox forgot to tell Elmer about Miranda and the
pups fledging. Their wings were fully grown, in proportion to their
small bodies. The pups were just beginning to come into their
‘death-by-cute’ stage of development where they were into everything
and Miranda was having a devil of a time keeping track of them. They
were everywhere into everything at once and the world was their oyster.
Three new big people? Bring ‘em on! They were new and must be
investigated. Elmer took one look at the family and damn near fell on
the floor laughing.
“Now I done seen
about ever’ thing,” Elmer proclaimed, “I got to have me one a them
angel-pups, they's just too cute for words,” he said.
“I already put
our name in the hat for one, Granddad,” Oatie said, “How are you
holding up, Miranda?” Oatie asked.
Oatie. I not git words right, yet, but me better,” she said and wagged
learning, but the pups are too young. In time, they will be able to
speak,” Oatie replied.
can you imagine what a talking dog could do for someone get’n on in
years?” Elmer asked.
“They would make
great companions,” Vox replied.
The men left the
Tate ranch and headed for Mick Flynn’s ranch. They were an angel posse
hell bent on an errand of mercy.
End of Chapter
33 ~ Him Who Made The Seven Stars
© ~ 2012 ~ Waddie Greywolf
Visit Web Site: http://www.asstr.org/~Waddie_Greywolf
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