Thursday, April 11, 2019

Just Listen - Prison Secrets - Part 2 of 2


The 26 eclectic-genre short stories for my #AtoZChallenge are excerpts from travelogue notes by
novel character Gahlen, who first appeared in SHARDS OF MEMORY – Oral History in a Heartbeat.

Each A-to-Z daily post is a complete, stand-alone tale - partly true, partly fiction.

By Jebulon - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

(PRISON SECRETS Part 2 of 2)
Genre: Religious Peace
(386 words)

“Ah, the dangers of possessing what others desire,” the elderly man said. “Everyone knows of a certain king, far in debt to powerful knights. Undermining their longstanding role as good Samaritans, the king attempts to imprison or kill all of the pope’s Templars.”
Stifling a groan, I prepared to hear yet another theory about lost fortunes of ancient knights.
“Below this lighthouse lay tunnels, connected to towers meant to guard what knights valued most: not golden chalices or splinters of crucifixion wood; nor chests overflowing with coins. Hidden beneath those towers . . .
Screeching tires followed by a thud startled us. Only the elderly man remained peaceful, in yoga pose. The car rested against a rickety barricade, its bumper revealing a history of collisions. The driver introduced herself as the storyteller’s daughter. She assisted her father to his feet then escorted him to the battered vehicle. He paused to offer a final comment.
“By treading this soil now, you leave footprints, guaranteeing an everlasting connection to your ancestors.”
“Well, um, merci for your time, monsieur.” I said, still feeling no connection to ancestors.
Back in the heart of Rue St Jean du Pérot, we located a restaurant with sidewalk seating. After taking our order for ice cream with fresh strawberries, the waiter asked what we were celebrating. I detailed our tour of ancestral lands. My sisters described our encounter with the elderly historian who had rambled on about tunnels under brick towers.
“Did he mention the underground carvings?” the waiter asked.
“He started to,” I said, “But his daughter disrupted the conversation.”
“Smashing into the barricade?” The waiter laughed. “That has become quite the tourist—
A slamming car door distracted him. The elderly man and his daughter walked slowly to our table. “He insists on finishing his story,” she said.
He spoke softly, abruptly returning to the vehicle while we pondered his words.
“Beneath the towers, on nature’s underground rock walls, are carved prayers. Each knight of old, ancestors to all, recited these in request of treasures such as kindness to others and peace of mind for all. The constant heartbeat of earth’s inner core transmits these messages daily to all living beings. Those receptive to this gift benefit most its priceless rewards.” He had paused before adding, “Listen. With all your senses, just listen.”



  1. Gail,

    Your opening line brings to mind one of the Ten Commendments, "Thou shalt not covet". This can get ya in more trouble than ever imagined. I see in today's youth not only covetness but expectations that what they see is what they get. No one is patient for the rewards of their labor, they have to own it immediately breeding a very spoiled generation. Gee, I didn't mean to get on my soapbox. Wouldn't it be grand if people sought to be kind over earthly treasures? Nice story!

    Join me for today's A2Z art sketch of Flotsom & JETSOM from The Little Mermaid series.

    1. We become expectant according to the ease of obtainment, Cathy. Everything is at our fingertip . . . with overnight delivery. Yet others stand in line overnight to purchase an item. Unfortunately, those items and need-to-have range from a new phone to a loaf of day-old bread.

  2. Another grand tale . . . . Thanks again for visiting my blog. That's more than once, now not many folk manage that . . .

    Rob Z Tobor

  3. Rob, you underestimate your ability to entertain . . .
    Hope you get lots of visits and comments throughout April.

  4. Intriguing. Love the prayers.
    I am also doing a different story every day, but I'm taking my prompts from the comments. Hope to see you!
    Doesn't Speak Klingon

    1. Thanks for visiting. I'm on my way over to your site!

  5. You have left me with food for thought and contemplation - especially prayer.

    1. Oh, as I respond to your comment, Roland, it is Monday and Notre Dame has fallen. Definitely time for contemplation and prayers.

    2. Devastating news about Notre Dame. Prayers for sure.

  6. Saved the comment for pt.2, Love the grand entrance of the daughter. Reminds me of my sister entering a room lol
    Stephanie Finnell
    @randallbychance from
    Katy Trail Creations

    1. Oh, we do all have one of those images in our head of a friend or acquaintance who enjoys those "Cher" moments. Those characters are also fun to write into a piece.

  7. Me too, read one then decided to comment after reading two. Nice idea and thought provoking. I really like the idea of the words being transmitted through the earth... Happy A to Z!

  8. Thanks for returning to read Part 2, Lisa. I thought his final revelation deserved an extra day.


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