just having some fun ... (second post) chapter 3
Ambrosia Is Waiting
Nineteen short months had passed and da Pearl family’s world had subtly, and not so subtly changed.
Planet Earth had changed too behind the geopolitical scenes but to most of her citizens everything was exactly the same.
Pa Pearl was now 50, but he looked visibly different - he had aged at least 10 years it seemed. He looked gaunt and wiry. His body weight had dropped a stunning 70 pounds and he no longer need spectacles. It wasn’t that he looked unhealthy, in fact, his face was vibrantly clearer than it had been in 25 yars and his green eyes were now shiny and bright like a beacon in a lighthouse. But, “How come?” thought Clem to himself? Sometimes, he would git plum tucker’d out and sleep for darn nar 24 hars straight!
Not only that, Pa walked constantly and had grown thick gray chin hars that he never shaved or trimmed. Ma Pearl and Missy, on da other hand, both seem more beautiful and more vibrant than ever. They both simply glowed with a rejuvenation that was mind-boggling in every way. Hail! Ma had lost a stunning 52 pounds herself and hiz little prissy Miss Missy had lost a well-paced 13.
Clem had changed too. He was now 17 pounds thinner on his 6’3” wide frame and was now as buff as a twenty-one yar old college playboy. Hail! It was totally peculiar.
Every morning at precisely 4:30 AM, Clem studied da French language for two hours until it was light enough outside for his morning swim. He usually strolled to da tank and took a twenty minute swim. Being da Deep South, da warter was never that cold. Da tank was like a small stocked lake. It was stocked with da traditional catfish, bass, carp, and perch. Both he and Pa had worked tirelessly to clean da tank area which lay directly behind da Pearl‘s Johnson county farm house. For thirty yards all around da tank, gravel was spread. This made da tank look pleasing and well cared for, but its primary purpose was to keep varmints like da deadly warter moccasins and skunks away. They also built two docks and a wonderful 16’by 8’ covered fishing shed. Da shed had a wooden floor, five large windows, an enormous aquarium-like minnow farm with blue stones on da bottom, a complete supply of lures, and a refrigerator which was full of bottled warter, soda, and snacks for friends.
Leading up to da tank was a new gravel road which extended from da main road. This allowed them and their friends to drive right up to the tank after they opened the gate. They had also hauled many truck loads of sand and dumped them in da tank. Pa Pearl had designed a special filter for da tank. “Hail! da warter was clar’r than crystal!”
For breakfast, da Pearls now had boiled aigs along with a substance Pa concocted from da experimental gardens. Pa had told da family that they would get use to its taste and come to appreciate it, which of course, they had.
“Diddy,” declar’d Harold Pearl, Clem and Missy’s nine yar old son who was as curious as a cat that’s done lost hiz tail, “Why can’t we go to R. E. Lee School no more? Why do we have to a let Pa Pa home school us? Why do we have to learn all thiz new stuff? What are we a learning about Yurp for?”
“Boy,” declar’d Clem kinda ‘mused, “You always been as arn’ry as a fat mosquito trying to suck da blood out of a turtle’s shell. Its purt nar impossible to git anythang past ya. You see ya Pa Pa just wants to git you ready for da fewture. Pa Pa knows what he is a doing.”
“Yeah Diddy, but …”
“Shut up possum breath,” screeched Velvet Mae “Vel Mae” Pearl who was named after Elizabeth Taylor’s eyes.
Vel Mae was da purty’est lit seven yar ole thang. She had long jet black har like her grandma and was smarter than a fox in a hen’s pen.
“Mama, mama …” offered Vel Mae happy as a hogg at slopping time. “I am getting taller ain’t I?”
“Aren’t I,” corrected Missy. “Yes darling, you are my pretty Vel Mae!”
“Your gitting uglier,” shouted Harold.
“Harold Lee Pearl!” warned Missy folding her apron.
“He thanks he’s som’thang special,” whined Vel Mae. She knew she had raised a blister on Harold butt.
“Errrrrrrrr, mama, why are ya talking so funny?” growled Har’old angry ’bout da interruption. “Yeah, but Diddy, why did Pa Pa let those scientists build those experimental gardens down da road? Why did those men a hep us build theza extra rooms. And who thiz Dr. Bernard that plays chess wit Pa Pa twice a week?”
“Boy,” smiled Missy also ‘mused, “You’re nosier that a hound trying to sniff a pole cat’ asz! And dats da gospel truth.”
“Woman!” snapped Clem. “Don’t trifle wit da boy! He’s a just a trying to learn to be a good sojer like Pa said he would.”
“Okay dokey,” smiled Missy. “But if’n he don’t quit a messing wit hiz sistar, I’m a gonna stomp him flattar than squashed squirrel shit!”
“Mama,” screamed Harold upset. “Why did you wanna go and say dat?”
“Just playin’ boy, just funnin’ a lil’tle bit!” laughed Missy lauder than a skinny mare giving birth.
Vel Mae, Missy, and Ma Pearl all loved da changes thought Harold. Pa Pa had let some strange men build four new underground rooms onto da Pearl family home. All da changes were blended into da country style of da homestead and at first glance, couldn’t be seen from da road lead-in’ up to da house. Each room had huge tinted sliding sun roofs. Vel Mae now had her own room and it was big too.
Da biggest room was da new family room. It was huge and had two long sofas that faced a big screen satellite TV at an angle. Every day da family would gather here and sing for half an hour. Pa Pa and Ma had insisted on it. In fact, they had insisted that Vel Mae and Harold learn to sing in Spanish even though they didn’t understand da words. Som’thin’ furine was a going on, but da chillen didn’t understand a what. It wasn’t that they hated da new changes, it was just that they didn’t understand da reason for ‘em.
Another room was Pa Pa’s thinking’ room. It was relatively small with one easy chair, an dark ole oak desk, a big picture frame window that looked out at da tank, and a lot of books - tons of books. But, Pa Pa had said from da first, “Thez learning books ain’t his’n, they’re hours,” Pa Pa would say. Harold thought, “Some thangs was Pa Pa‘s, some was hern, some was there’n, but none were his’n.” Then, he was fit to be tied.
It was strange that Pa Pa would wait so long in his life to take up reading’ - stranger than a frog sleeping in a toad strangler. For Christ’s sake, some of da books was Ma and Missy’s poetry books. Hail! Ma and Missy was both writ’in da oddest thangs which Pa Pa seemed to love.
Da last room was da chillens learning room. Here, Pa Pa taught da oddest thangs. Thangs even da slickest fox woodn’t kar to know. This room had three black boards that covered three of da walls. It also had a new TV which Pa Pa used to teach world history. He was a firm believer in da learning channel and da discovery channel. Thangs was a changin’ fasteren a greyhound chasing a spotted albino jack rabbit and that was far shor. But, why come?
“Hail!” thought Harold more confused than a five leg‘d poodle dog trying to catch a Frisbee. Even Diddy done got some fierce look in hiz eye from time to time. Why? Why? Why? “Somebody done roont Diddy,” he thought realizing Diddy never hunted or even ate meat anymore. Why? And why had his entire family abandoned eating meat? All this stinks worseren a pole cat pissin’ and a fartin’ in a stanky outhouse. Well, hail! Everybody eats meat in this part of Mississippi. Now, that’s a fact!
Da town of Gator had changed too. Da fed’ral gov’ment had opened up a new four lane road to its newest food growth research facility and even hired some of Gator’s residents to work there. The new facility was called the World Food House. Little did any of Gator’s resdents know that da entire facility had been built at da request of Will “Pa” Pearl. Pa knew da government would watch him, so he made it easy for them.
In effect, World Food House was the largest green house in the world. Five miles of forest had been allocated for this project and the government was literally building a self-contained food city. Pa had insisted that Gator remain small. Only the most important scientist were allowed to live near Gator. All other personnel were bused in from a completely new city community over seven miles away. This new city was built especially to service World Food House. Its new Mayor and city council were all government or retired government personnel. Many were true Southerners, and a few were true Mississippians. Most of the residents were World Food House employees. A special and undercover military police force was brought in for security. The security team was lead by Amos Murphy, a retired FBI agent. The security team was as diverse as the World Food House staff. Most of the foreign personnel spoke fluent English. They were trained to fit into Mississippi's culture. Most of the staff of WFH knew this was a massive world-wide effort that was funded on a massive level, but few knew why. Few had little idea of the grandness of this project.
Dr. Josef Bernard had been selected as the recipient of Nature’s Eye, one of the Seven Gifts of Ambrosia. Dr. Bernard was the easiest choice for the gift of Nature’s Eye. For more than forty long years, he had experiment with new and revolutionary methods of growing food in Israel’s roughest and driest soil. He and his team had made startling discoveries. Sixty seven year old Bernard had learned all the food processing techniques world wide. His wife had passed away several years earlier and his children and grandchildren were busy with their own lives. Something of a world-wide celebrity in the scientific and political communities, Dr. Bernard never hesitated when he was offered Nature’s Eye.
In Russia, he had designed environmental control devices which allowed year round food growth. In the rich soils of the United States of America, he had taught improved soil rotation techniques for years. In fact, he had already improved fertilizers and recommended water capture and dispersal techniques. Even without Nature’s Gift, he was truly an amazing man. With the gift, he was literally a saint. Earth’s world leaders had made a wise choice despite Dr. Bernard’s age.
Wisely, the world council had decided to locate doctor Bernard and his research and development team near Pa Pearl. From here, they could provide security for Pa and keep him relatively safe. Unknown to them, of course, Pa was safe just about anywhere in the world. Ambrosia had given him many mysterious gifts - but they didn‘t need to know that.
As part of their cover story, Dr. Bernard and his team of world-famous agriculturalists, with Pa’s help, had establish an experimental wellness program using Gator and all of Johnson County Mississippi as its guinea pigs. Inside the World Food House, they refined tasty and physically superior food products. The residents of Gator loved them. In fact, Mississippi was once one of the fattest states in the world. The diets of Southerners were notorious for their good taste and terrible nutrition. Food like pork chitterlings, chicken fried steak, barbeque were a great tradition in the Deep South, but unfortunately, they were very fattening. “Mississippians are not fatties anymore,” smiled Dr. Bernard happy with his initial success. All of his research subjects were extremely healthy. In fact, there were only four fat people left in Gator and twenty nine left in Johnson county. Soon, hoped Dr. Bernard, all of them would be healthy too. Word had spread about the new tasty foods and diets and everyone wanted to try them. Little did any of them know they were being prepared for a great war with aliens.
That Thursday night two of the world’s most important and interesting men played chess. By now, some of WFH special security personnel had guessed that the two men where playing at a level well beyond their comprehension. Josef Bernard was curious about something:
“Will, I have seen you teleporting into the United Nations council chambers,” started Josef easing into the conversation. “I just have one new ability. But, you seem to have several. Exactly how many “gifts” do you have?”
Pa began laughing like a school boy. He laughed so hard his darn belly was a hurting.
“I just have one gift like you,” revealed Pa casually.
“Then how can you bend folks minds?” asked Josef Bernard really curious. “How can you transport yourself 1,500 miles away to New York City? And most importantly, how can you continue to live like a hillbilly?”
Pa Pearl began laughing hysterically. How nice it was to talk to a man once or twice a week who can almost understand his newly found condition. Josef was not the same as he had been. Josef Bernard had always been a genius. Even as a boy he had always been gifted. But, for Will Pearl, this new gift was burdensome. For over 48 years he had lived a simple country life - except for his four years in the Ormy and two years in Jackson, Mississippi. He had always done simple country thangs.
He had married a woman much smarter than he was, true enough, but that was her I-dear. All the hurrah was sometimes too much for him. “First, I am no different from you physically. In fact, it may be very possible, despite our ages, that your body is superior to mine. Ambrosia’s Gifts gives us the ability to concentrate the power of our minds in specific areas, say agriculture, to accomplish wonderful thangs. As you already know, the power of the mind is awesome. We are only limited by what we believe we can and can not do and by what we can comprehend.
Wisdom tells me I can do things most minds can’t conceive of. When folks thank about thangs, they have been conditioned all of their lives to thank it is impossible. Not true … as I believe you have begun to suspect. You have over 17 years of conditioning I don’t have, thus you may find it hard to imagine thangs like I can.”
“Will, are you telling me I can bend people’s minds also?” inquired Josef.
“No, I am telling you many folks can bend other folks minds,” informed Will Pearl. They just don’t realize they have this ability.”
“Can I transport myself into the other room?” asked Josef.
“Why not?” answered Will immediately. “If you can imagine it so completely, then you can do it. You certainly have the brain power to do just that. But, beware, if you falter in any way, you may destroy yourself. For instance, you may transport yourself into a wall or chair or even a floor.”
“Is my age a factor?” asked Josef.
“No, age is not one of he limiting factors,” advise Will. “In fact, if you had been teleporting yourself since your youth, you would find it relatively easy to do so as you grew older. That is, until you reached a point where your body could not perform what your mind directed.”
“You seem to have other abilities as well,” continue Josef. “Does wisdom tell you what is possible and what is not?”
“Yes, answered Will. “That is the primary difference between you and I.”
“One more question,” advised Josef. “Can you do my job?”
“Only in the most limited capacity,” informed Will. “I can learn almost anything, but I do not have your vast years of experience. I do not have your aptitudes. Also, there is a physical price that comes along with using the gifts. Haven‘t you noticed periods of intense fatigue despite the superior diet and exercise regime.”
“Is that what makes me feel so tired and useless physically?” laughed Josef. “I just assumed I was getting old!”
“Why do I sometimes feel we shouldn’t have any of these gifts?” asked Josef.
“It is because we are elevated well above the human race intellectually,” suggested Will. “If an ambitious and ruthless individual acquired one of these gifts, he could possibly accumulate great and potentially dangerous power. Each gift, except wisdom, has this price. The way of the flesh always leads to ruin.”
“Why is wisdom so different?” asked an amazed Josef Bernard.
“Wisdom comes with a complete set of rules,” laughed Will. “They are quite complete and demanding I assure you! So if you take a notion to do something foolish, don’t. ”
“I see and I understand,” said Josef realizing Will’s earth-shattering burden.
“By the way,” continued Will his moving Queen to block the opposing Kings escape routes, “Even a blind hog can find a acorn every once in a while my friend - check mate!
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Who ya’ll a calling a hillbilly? Besides, hillbillies are not from the Deep South. We don’t have enough hills for that.”
Josef Bernard burst out laughing as he realized his geographical indiscretion. Who was this man Pa Pearl? Who indeed?
Copyright . ShyPoet1 AKA Jimmy L. Holder and may not be reproduced or copied without permission.
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