This is the final chapter in my novel of Louise and Ed. What happens? Does God win? Maybe Satan finds a way to claim victory. There's only one way to find out. Happy reading!
THE MISTS OF PAPOOSE POND
Chapter Thirty Eight
I’m an old weapons man; I took specialized classes in missile technology; and I know what’s going on. This fucker is locked in on me, the gyroscope saying, “Goodbye, Mr. Ed. Your ass is grass.”
Taking the F-100 up as high and fast as I can, I try to shake it, to make the missile go off course, but it sticks to me, following my every move. And . . . and it’s gaining.
Louise tries to shoot the sucker out of the sky, but the missile is too fast, and her bullets don’t even touch it. It’s up to me.
Dropping down from the heights, I zip right in front of an approaching jet from Satan, fly right over the top of it, and come down behind the aircraft. As I drop below the plane, the missile rams into it and explodes. Though I’m shaken by the concussion, and my jet wobbles around a bit, I’m far enough removed to avoid total destruction.
Score one for Mr. Ed!
“That a way, cowboy!” Louise shouts. “More! Let’s get more of these bad boys.”
We zip in and out of the mass of aircraft, knowing the pilots’ moves ahead of time, never running out of ammo, though we should have long ago. “Thanks, God,” I say, knowing full well where the extra armaments are coming from.
It is inconceivable that three jets are doing so much damage against a force as large as this. How much longer it will last is a big question. Howard is the one I’m most worried about. He doesn’t possess the skills we do; he doesn’t know the moves of the pilots ahead of him. Flying by the seat of his pants, he skillfully maneuvers the F-100 into and around the attackers, sucked into the thrill of battle. What a man!
The dilemma becomes more muddied when Satan’s pilots take their planes and retreat, wasting no time in getting out of there, moving so fast that Louise and I are not privy to their thoughts. Shit! This doesn’t bode well for us. Maybe I can’t tell what they’re up to, but I know Lucifer is behind the whole mess.
“We did it, Ed!” Howard hollers into his radio. “We chased the bastards out of here!”
Not liking the quiet surrounding us, I say back, “Something’s getting ready to happen, buddy. Stay alert. These bad boys are up to something.”
“Are you sure?”
“There’s no doubt in my mind.”
“So what now?”
“We go back to the Armory. I have a plan.”
“What kind of plan?”
“I can’t tell you here. It’s not safe. Later, you will know.”
The jets high tail it back first, but the B-52’s, having launched an awesome attack against the ground forces of Satan, ripping apart the antagonists with their relentless pursuit and the never ending dropping of 500 pound bombs and napalm coming afterwards to sanctify the area, are right behind us. We make far better time than we ever did in the Black Hawks and rumble down the runways.
New planes are waiting for us. All of them loaded and ready to go. This time, the bombers are not ready. Jets. Jets are the order of the day now. As if to alleviate my concerns for Howard, a co-pilot has been assigned to Howard, not to help with flying the craft, Howard is perfect capable of doing that on his own, but to be his radar to gauge what the enemy pilots are up to.
Yes, they will be up to something. Of that, I have no doubt.
The sounds of the enemy aircraft are filling my ears. “To the sky,” I shout. “They’re coming.!”
My webbed friends are manning the F-100’s now. They never cease to amaze me. In every way imaginable, they are always one step, or more, ahead of everyone else. No wonder God chose them. How could He not have?
Plane after plane takes off and we head en mass to Papoose Pond. Yes, back to the Pond. We now have about 100 jets and we know what we have to do. There are risks-nothing is a given-but I believe what I have in mind will work.
We slow down as we near the Pond, take a turn, and retreat a bit to shove our bravado in the faces of the rapidly approaching jets. Then we double back to the pond, the vermin hot on our heals and thirsty for a battle that, according to their minds anyway, will be overwhelmingly in their favor.
Roaring full speed ahead, our tough squadron flies straight at the force shield separating Heaven from Earth. But we all veer either upwards or to the sides, avoiding the barrier, knowing we can not penetrate it. Satan’s pilots become nothing more than unwilling suicide jockeys as they smash into the defense set up by the Almighty and perish.
Burning rubble is all that is left of the entire force. Not a plane has been spared. I know that when we return next, this mess will all be removed from sight, with no evidence showing that a battle was ever fought here.
“Back to the battle lines!” I holler in to the radio. “Let’s get this fucking war over with!”
The jets reach the main battle lines in a hurry, and from the looks of things, they need us. As many good Zombies that we have, Lucifer has even more. The battle is being fought close: man to man, Zombie to Zombie, and demon to demon. Everything is too confined for us to strafe or drop napalm. We find a level field and land. The air battle is over. It’s time for close and personal now.
Louise and I return to using our swords, at least being able to cut the antagonists down to size. The undead become legion as they are sliced, but their pieces are more manageable than the whole. Once more, we establish our lines of defense and gain a little open area where we are able to burn the monsters’ blood and intestines, the bigger chunks and the whole Zombies once more returning to the cleansing fires of the magma pits.
Once more, my troops are gaining the upper hand, but this is too easy. The Dark One is up to no good again.
“Louise,” I say, “what do you think is happening?”
“I’m not sure, Ed. Away from the battlefield, it’s too quiet. The snake angel and his family aren’t around. He’s given them the slip. And yet, a sixth sense of some kind is telling me He’s close.”
“Same here, but I can’t read his thoughts.”
“Neither can I. He must have finally put a lid on his temper and has the power to hide His presence.”
This is not good news. We have always been able to gain the upper hand, even if only temporarily, because of his hot head. A cool Devil we do not need.
However, with things going as smoothly as they are, I know he’s trying to lull us into a false sense of security and then, wham! He’ll lay it on us.
“Fuck him,” Louise says, “I guess we’ll just have to be ready for anything and handle whatever comes our way.”
I nod. But damn! I hate to be playing defense with the bastard. Offense is my game, even if I botch things up from time to time.
“Okay,” Louise says, “what’s on your mind? I can’t figure it out. Your head is spinning out of control, going everywhere, and thinking of everything.”
“Do you think he’s going to attack from above or below?” I ask.
“I’m not certain. Why do you ask?”
“I don’t believe it will be from above. The skies are more receptive to vibrations and thoughts. The ground, on the other hand, can hide things. And the ground below can hide even more. The bed rock going deep below us is like a fortress. Look at the marvelous caverns and underground paths our webbed friends have constructed over the years below us. Humans have been completely unaware of their existence.”
“You think He’s waiting for us below?”
“Yes, I do. I will bet everything that the caverns are the answer. We have no choice other than to go below and do battle with Him before He comes out from hiding and tries to gain the upper hand.”
Louise is wondering about my sanity now. “You and what army?”
“Me and no army.”
“Everyone knows that. There’s no room below for an army to attack the bastard. You know as well as I do that it has to be mano on mano. Besides, if I’m wrong, then everyone else must be up here.”
“I don’t like this, Ed.”
I give her a hug. “I know you don’t, but I have to do it. I’ll be back. I honestly think I can pull this off.”
“Damn it, Ed! I love you! I don’t want to lose you. I’m going along. The others can handle things topside. There has to be room for two of us.”
“You stubborn lady. Things could happen; you could be killed.”
“I would be with you. That’s all I need.”
Thoughts filter through my mind of how happy her Mom and Dad looked as they walked into the soothing environs of Heaven. “Okay, okay. But be careful. Please! You must.”
I shouldn’t be surprised that the thoughts coming from her tell me that she will fight with everything she possesses, and that she will not back away. “I can read your mind, you know.”
“And I can read yours as well. As you would say, it’s balls to the walls.”
“But you don’t have any balls.”
She laughs. “Guts and determination don’t need balls or testosterone. Estrogen can wield some power too.”
“Point well taken. You certainly have as much courage as any man I have ever seen. Let’s get down below and do it.”
It’s no sense arguing with Louise. She’s my soul mate in every way.
The top-side war is in very capable hands. My men from all walks of life, and death, are getting better at what they do all the time. They will be able to handle anything that comes their way. I let them know where we’re going, and tell them not to worry about us. My webbed friends do, but they know we’re doing the right thing.
Louise and I walk side by side, at least in the passages allowing us to do so. This is not the place to spread out at all. She has committed herself to fighting alongside me, and the farther in we go, the more I sense the presence of the Evil One. Even the cockiness of the bastard is somehow manifesting itself through the corridors and caverns of the underground colossus created by God’s chosen people.
Now that I know the true story of God and the ones he created in his own image, I wonder if somehow these majestic underground wonders are not somehow connected to the paradise that is Papoose Pond. Are my magnificent friends able to bridge the gap between the worlds through these hidden passages? It doesn’t seem likely, but nothing anymore is dead-certain.
The temperature rises, telling me the purification of the magma is drawing closer. This is where the battle will be fought. The loser will fall into the flowing river of lava, and it will be over for him. Or for her. Yes, the thought never escapes me, because as much as it would pain me for this to happen, it is a possibility.
Looking at Louise, I know that I could never allow her to pass without me being there with her. The thought . . . the thought of me losing her and then defeating the Devil but not having my lady with me anymore would be the worst possible pain. And yet, I could not do my utmost to defeat the one who had delivered the final blow to the one I love.
Living without her would put me in a Hell in and of itself, even if Satan was no longer alive. A paradox of pain for my loss and joy for the demise of the intense evil destroyed would assuage my soul until I passed. How sad can a person be? No more than that.
It is no longer necessary to merely feel the presence that might be. It is here. I was right all along. The Dark Angel is in this place, and He is waiting for us. I almost have to laugh in a way: He thinks He lured us down here with the subterfuge of His mind, but such is not the case. I knew: and Louise knew. We are the ones who are one step ahead of the dark Master.
“Show yourself, Satan!” I holler out. “No more cat and mouse horse-shit. Man on man. Let us get it on!”
Rumbling comes from the entire cavern we’re in at the moment. “Man on man?! What about the woman? Are you going to hide behind the skirts of your main squeeze?”
I look at Louise and we set up a plan between us. “She will stay out of the fray unless I am destroyed by you.”
Louise laughs in His face. “Then you will have to fight the pussy next, you dark winged bastard.”
Satan is enraged now and attacks Louise first. All bets are off now. The gentleman’s agreement I tried to establish with Him has already vanished. Once more, his temper takes control.
Louise is up to the task, her fluid movements and great speed are better than that of her antagonist. But she has an ace in the hole now: me.
As a team, we fight like whirling dervishes, not caring what might happen to us, only concerned about the end-game, the destruction of the one cast from Heaven so many years ago.
He realizes much too late that his cockiness, and then His anger, have taken the advantage away from Him. These humans; these monkey people; even if they were created in his image, they are not his equals. Far from it. How could this be happening to him? He has far more power than them.
“Yes, Satan,” I shout. “You have the power, but you can’t control your emotions, and it will be your undoing. Feel our fucking swords!”
Louise and I are everywhere, slicing the bastard apart. Closer and closer He gets to the edge of the chasm leading to the drop . . . the drop to the river of lava waiting for Him. There is no stopping us now. We sense victory. He can not escape us.
Gamely, He battles, but I will not give up for the sake of Louise, and she will not give up for the sake of me. Our commitment is complete and unselfish. Lucifer can not match that. Our power and love combined are enough to force Him to fall over the abyss. His moans of agony rise up from the depths below us. No more do I feel his spirit anywhere. He is vanquished. We have won.
Louise and I hug, knowing the Evil One is gone, burned to death in the cleansing fires of God. Our job should be easy now: without a leader, the enemy forces should be easy to defeat. Surely, they will come over to our side now.
We are exhausted from battling Satan, but we must join our army above. This war will not be over until all of his forces have been destroyed or converted over to our side. The general is gone, but some troops are still battling on.
Once we reach the surface, we can tell that the Devil’s troops can feel his absence. On this fact alone, we have many of the dark army coming to our side. We have won! It is inevitable.
The war that is left is a mop up action now. God has won!
Louise and I are both looking forward to a little R&R. I want to share my love for her in more ways than covering each other’s backs while we’re battling the forces of Satan. I need to feel the love that a woman can give to me as I give all I have to satisfying her every wish and desire.
We look at each other and know the time is coming soon. Almost . . . we are almost there.
* * * *
From deep below, the rumbling comes . . .