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All IS Cured With A Glass of Merlot

SPACE NEEDLE MIND TRIP

By Beautiful IntelligencePublished 3 years ago 30 min read
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All IS Cured With A Glass of Merlot
Photo by Timothy Eberly on Unsplash

PROLOGUE

“Ring! Ring! Ring!.......”

Eager with glee and anticipation, Shannon leapt up from her sunken, perspired, crimson flowered, cotton sofa to answer the phone. Saving herself from embarrassment, Shannon’s subconscious spoke aloud in her mind. Calm down! she says. The reprimand is so definite that Shannon straightens up, releasing her jitters before she answers, and with ever so care, picks up the phone. At the end of the receiver Shannon hears the familiar-and what sounded like- friendly, intoxicating, sexy and impressive voice, inviting her on a date. The invitation is mutually convincing, with nothing else left to do but patiently await the approaching painstakingly Sunday commitment for May 22, 2022.

CHAPTER 1

“Do you know why I chose this restaurant for us?” “Well, I must say Damon…It is breathtaking.” “Indeed, it is, but that’s not why.” “Then no, I don’t. Why?” “Because of its history. History?” “Yes…History. You Philadelphians don’t know anything about the Northwest.” “No. I suppose not. But we know everything about the Northeast, and the South. Washington is just not that appeasing to us…. “Easterns.” However, I must not be too judgmental. Washington is verrrry appealing.” “Oh, is it?” “Yessss. It is to die for.” “Hey. We don’t talk like that in the space needle.” “Why not? Because of its history.” “Ok.. ok… ok. Why do you keep referring to “because of its history?” I have a feeling you want to share something with me.” “I do.” “Okay. Then spill it. It’s a wonderful conversation for our first date.” “Great! Forgive me for the excitement. I’m so thrilled to share this with you. You must understand, it’s not that often I get to share the story. All of us natives, know it. Second, it’s the experience of a lifetime.” “What? To share the story?” “No. it’s much more complicated than that. You have to promise to trust me.” “Why?” “Because something happens when I tell the story.” “Okkkkayyy……? Can I ask what?” “No. But you must back out now, if you’re uncertain.” “I mean…. what could possibly happen? We’re safe right?” “Yes, we are.” “Hahahha.” “What? Are you nervous?” “Yes. I don’t know what to expect. Is the space needle going to move?” “Technically no. Psychologically yes.” “Psychologically? “Hahaha. You speak as if we’re going on a mind trip.” “Mind trip… I like it.” “Okay so what if I say no?” “Then we sit here, finish our dinner, sip on our Merlot, and chat as if we never discussed this.” “It’s just that simple?” “Yes. It’s just that simple.” “Why is this so important to you?” “It’s simply fun.” “Fun?” “Fun. I assure your safety.” “So how long does it last?” “An hour at the most.” “Will anyone here join us?” “Everyone here will join us.” “Why?” “Everyone here was made aware of your presence.” “My presence?” “Yes. You’re a newbie. Everyone here must play. It’s all a part of the fun.”

There is a hesitant silence from Shannon. Damon voluntarily partakes in the stillness, as he notices Shannon’s admiration as well as probe of the room. Shannon takes several glances around and notices there are no apparent oddities. The room is magnificent. The modern natural colors and architectural stature makes your heart pause in awe, and chandeliers that dangle, diamond shaped in glitter expense. The luxury of it all. Tables are shined with a spark of the best golden silverware in town, paired with cream crowned shaped gentle clothed napkins. One might be overwhelmed taking in the gallantly scooped burgundy curtains, to picture perfect the open glass view beside sky-scrappers looking upward at the 605-foot wasp-waisted tower. In the distance, behind all the brilliant clutter, one can’t help but stare at the shimmering Divinity- touched massive participating blocks of ice. As Shannon returns to awareness, she again is succumbed to the presence in the restaurant. It is preoccupied with the ever-going conversational sounds of laughter, chattering of gossip and ringing of plates on the tables, glasses toasting one another and the beautiful harmony of the banded instruments with infallible blended euphonious togetherness.

“So, will you play?” “I will.” “Greattt!”

CHAPTER 2

“Ok. So, what do I do?” “Nothing. It’s already started.” “But I don’t feel different. I don’t even see anything.” “You will.” “Okaaaayyy. So, since it’s started, can we talk about it now?” “Do you like the view.” “Oh yes of course. The glaciers are amazing up here. Oh goodness! Do you see that?” “Yes.” “Why are those ravens swarming around us like that?” “The fun has begun.” “Hahahhahahahahhah. With the ravens?”

Just as the question was being asked, the glass window opened with the push of the button from one of the hosts in the restaurant. Without pause and with extreme ease, the ravens glided on through the sixteen by eighteen-inch window. One by one the ravens grabbed what looked like a scroll, out of a round goodie basket positioned on the counter. Just as if it were rehearsed, each one took their position at one of the twenty-two tables.

“Whoaaaaa!” “Calm down Shannon. Don’t be scared. The birds won’t bother you. They are just here to hand you the scroll.” “Me. Why me?” Shannon whispers. “Because you are the newbie.” “What about for the other tables?” “It doesn’t matter with them.” “Is this some sort of magic trick?” “Ha. You’ll see.” “Okay.”

The host motions for the violinists of the band to play their piece. It a dramatic but beautiful expressive bouncy ditty. With no vocalist, the song lasts every bit of two minutes, and now the birds’ que in as if under a spell, moving closer towards their chosen alliance.

Shannon quickly and quietly steps her right foot book in a defensive effort to flee if necessary. Damon calmly grabs her hand and stills her motion. The raven leans over, sort of in a ballet bowed stance, offering the scroll to selected Shannon.

“It isn’t going to bite me, right?” “Naaawww. Just take the scroll.”

CHAPTER 3

After a few seconds, Shannon finally agrees to the notion and accepts the scroll out of the raven’s mouth.

“Thank you,” Shannon says, incredibly moved in the phenomenon of what will clandestinely transpire within the next hour. Immediately after taken the scroll, Shannon notices all the ravens have handed theirs to the nominee and now are swarming in a circled ring around to the sixteen by eighteen-inch glass window opening. And within a flash, they had all dissipated out of the room.

“Should I open this?” “You have to wait until the host gives you the signal.” “What’s the signal?” “It’s coming shortly, just watch.”

Just a brief second later the host’s posture as straight as a pencil and extremely poised, lifts both hands up, pauses them in the air and then lavishly places them down to his sides. His unfamiliar voice speaks, announcing to everyone to open their scroll.

Shannon eagerly unties the tie that wrapped the scroll, then rolls it down. In big black bold letters, the scroll read:

DARKNESS

OF

DEATH

Puzzled and unsure of what to do next, Shannon immediately turned to Damon who had covered his eyes before the scroll was read. Damon, Shannon guessed, wanted to be surprised. So, Shannon gently tugged on Damon’s left arm. Damon opened his right eye first. When the second opened, both eyes seemingly popped out of his head.

CHAPTER 4

“Oh NOOOO!”

The rest of the guests of the Space Needle joined in with exhausts and outbursts of the same feelings. The energy in the room had changed drastically. The light and carefree air of the evening now changed to a dull and hostile sullen place. There was no longer a golden arch spilling over the needle, but a clouded shade cast over instead, one of unbelief and dismay.

“No one has ever gotten this before.” “Why? Is something wrong?” “Yes. There is. The Space Needle was built on behalf of George Washington. The Space Needle on this day opened 61 years ago. It is also the anniversary of George Washington’s wife Martha Washington’s death 220 years ago.” “Okay. So, what does this have to do with anything?” “Do you know how the first First Lady died?” “No. I mean, should I?” “It’s important now. Martha died from decease.” “Okayyyy? I’m still not understanding.” “When you see The Darkness of Death, the weak turn up sick. After becoming ill, the darkness collects the souls. The souls then go on to live a doomed afterlife of torture.” “Who?” “The Darkness of Death.”

Damon grabs Shannon’s hand with the scroll in it and pulls it closer to her face.

“Oh. So, what does all of this mean?” “I don’t know. But my guess is, it’s not good.” “You said no one has ever gotten this scroll before?” “No. They haven’t.” “So how do you know this isn’t good?” “From the story I just told you.” “So, what do you think will happen?” “I’m not sure, but let’s deal with these guys first.”

Shannon then turned her head to face the crowd of diner’s who were leaving their tables and now walking towards theirs. Inside of the Space Needle, the twenty-two tables are placed in such an orderly manner. There are ten tables lined perfectly close to each side of the window views. The remaining two tables are positioned in the center, which left an enormous amount of space around them. Shannon and Damon were seated at one of the two centered in the middle. As the crowd surrounded them, Shannon and Damon braced themselves for whatever the angry crew had to say.

“What did you do?!!!!!” “Where did she come from?!” “She must be evil!!!” “How did she manage to get that scroll?!” “Where did you meet her?!!” “WAIT! WAIT! Wait! Everyone calm down! You’re frightening her!” “We don’t care!” “We’re all frightened!” “Everyone got the same scroll this evil got!” “She’s no such thing! EVERYONE CALM DOWN!” “What are you going to do if we don’t?!” “Sir… please! Let’s talk about this.” “MOVE OUT THE WAY! MOVE OUT THE WAY!”

Everyone’s attention turns back to see the crowd separate and through the space appears the host. The host looked much shorter up closely and his suit and tie are neat, but snug enough to pop. Shannon also notices the suit is the color of a dark brown and the tie is colored with gold and cream horizontal stripes. When the host reaches the table, the crowd is now quiet. He reaches out his hand to Shannon first, then Damon and introduces himself.

“How do you do madam, sir? My name is Dave Rembert.” “Hello. I’m Shannon.” “I’m Damon.” “Great. I promise you no harm will come to you by anyone person in this restaurant. We all have to work together.” “Excuse me sir.” “Please. Call me Mr. Dave.” “Okay. Mr. Dave…I’m a little confused about all that’s happened. Why is everyone so mad at me? And what are we working together on? This does not look like fun, but profoundly serious.” “My apologies mam. I’ve been here for 61 years and no “newbie” has ever gotten this scroll. Not even when we opened. And I must add during that time, we were all considered “newbies” and there were 22 different scrolls. I will not lie to you. What you received was not good. We must travel to the battle grounds. Only you will know what to do when you get there.” “What battle grounds?” “George Washington’s battle grounds.” “Why?” “The Space Needle was built on his behalf and dedicated to the First President. The scroll is directing us there.” “How do you know that?” “I am the host. I’m supposed to know.” “Well, why did I get that scroll?” “Only you will know when we get to the battle ground.” “Which battle ground?” “The Space Needle will take us there.” “Now if you’re finished Ms. Shannon, everyone must take their seats. We must be on our way.” “Isn’t the band going?” “No. Oh, and one more thing. Don’t forget you’re always safe.” “What does that mean?” “Please Ms. Shannon. Take your seat and buckle up!” “But there are no buckles.”

As Shannon turned to sit down, the tables and chairs the guests were seated had all gone. There were seats now against the burgundy curtained windows. It appeared as if everything disappeared along with the breathtaking view. Once seated, Shannon buckled herself in. None of the seats or belt buckles were here before. Shannon found herself continuously referencing back to the conversation her and Damon had earlier. Mind trip, she thought to herself. This is all this is. Shannon peaked at Damon who was seated beside her to see the expression on his face. He looked ready, unbothered, comfortable. Shannon looked around the room. There was no one that looked out of place. Everyone seemed to be familiar with what was happening. Without warning the space needle made a loud rumbling noise. It was so loud Shannon could not help to shield her ears with her hands. Then those seconds passed and without hesitation the Space Needle jerked upward, then forward. Shannon gasped and would have fallen out of her seat, had it not been for the buckle. The space needle moved with such rapid speed that the feeling was similar as being on a rollercoaster ride. Ten minutes past, before the space needle came to a jerked halt. Everyone was told to stand and take position in the middle. Mr. Dave stood up from what looked like the driver’s seat in front and pushed a big round bronze button.

CHAPTER 5

The tall metal golden brown door opened, lifting itself upward until it met with the top of the ceiling. Mr. Dave joined the group in the center and instructed the crew to join groups. There were forty-eight people in total. (forty-two guests, Mr. Dave (the captain), the manager, and one waiter and waitress). There were three groups. Mr. Dave informed Damon and Shannon they would travel with him and nine others. The manager, the waiter and waitress would travel with a group of eleven each. It was explained that each group had to find a dark skinned Vitis Vinifera grape and oak skins within the hour. If all parties did not bring back the grapes and oak skins within that time frame, the “Angel of Death” surely would pay a visit. The group was warned about having just a little over thirty minutes to accomplish the task. So, two by two the crew begin to leave the needle until everyone’s feet were rested in the ground. The rural land appeared very friendly and peaceful. Nature was a very apparent-green grass, brown earth, mountains, and glaciers in the distance- and the air fresh.

“What is this place?” asked Shannon. “We are in Yakima Valley,” responded Damon. “Let’s get going!”

The crowd appeared to disburse and before long, the other groups had disappeared. Although in the month of May there should have been tons of grapes within the field, there was not one in sight. Shannon believed the task would be easy, but instead the challenge was pretty evident.

“Mr. Dave.” “Yes.” “Why aren’t there any grapes? I mean, there should be tons out here.” “Ha. Did you think the task would be easy?” “Yes. Isn’t this where the grapes come from?” “Indeed, it is. But we’ve just taken a trip using the Space Needle. The Space Needle cannot move. The things you don’t see won’t make sense. The things you do see will.” “But I saw the Space Needle move.” “Did you really?” “Well…I suppose I didn’t.” “But it had to move. How else did we get here?” “You didn’t see it move. You felt it. Now keep your eyes wide open and pay close attention.” “So how are we supposed to fetch the grapes, if we can’t see them?” “That my dear, I don’t know.”

The four groups continued to walk in silence, vigilant but determined. No one wanted to find out what the darkness of death was.

Wanting to bottle up the uneasiness, Shannon thought of striking up a conversation with Damon. After all, it was still their first date and Shannon could not resist the temptation of finding out more about Damon. Regardless of his apparent disquieted disposition, Damon still exuded confidence, poise, acquired, and refined handsomeness. Before the question of this mysterious and bewildered game, Damon appeared normal and interesting. Plus, Shannon needed something to take her mind off her blistering feet. Dinner at a restaurant gave no hints of walking for miles on a wild goose hunt and trust me Shannon’s feet were paying for both the dinner and the goose. Shannon scoured the faces of her group. Everyone was so serious, and Shannon did not want to draw attention to herself by disrupting their discontented determination. Shannon cautiously opened her mouth to speak with just enough volume only Damon would overhear.

“Hey Damon. What’s the deal with finding these grapes?” “The grapes are what we need to return home. Also, they were a favorite of Martha’s.” “Martha? Who is Martha?” “President Washington’s wife.” “Oh. I thought you said the game was fun.” “It usually is.” “Where else has the Needle taken you?” “Oooohhhh….. Places like Candy Land, or Disney World, The Chocolate Factory, even cruises.” “But those places don’t exist.” “They do in the mind of the Space Shuttle.” “Wow. How many times have you done this?” “Over a dozen. I lived here all my life. I thought this would be an extraordinary, exciting date.” “I appreciate the gesture. It was extraordinary and exciting in the beginning.” “Oh. What it is now?” “Ummmm. Still extraordinary, but exhausting.” “I noticed the stilettos. I must say you are wearing those shoes. And because I have a feeling you wore those for me, when you get tired, I’ll carry you on my back.” “What….? No.” “Yes. Be my guess. It is the least I can do.” “Nooooo. But I must say the offer is a way to a woman’s heart. It’s thoughtful, polite and at the least very charming. And oh, I wore the stilettos because they went with my dress.” “Please don’t bring my attention to your dress. It’s hard for me to focus, especially since you wore that for me too.” “Oh please. A woman should want to look her best on a date as a compliment to an attractive sophisticated guy.” “I like that. Keep going.”

Just as a spark of flirting ignited, the sight of a blue pail flushed it right out. Shannon took flight to the pail and noticed a bunch of Vitis Vinifera inside, still fresh on the vine and the oak skins. Elated with disbelief, Shannon lifted the bucket up high in the air as if praising it. No one, except Damon noticed her findings until she let out her out her regards.

“Hey everyone! Search no more! I have found what we have been searching for!”

Mr. Dave, the manager, and Damon were so excited, that one by one all of them ran over to Shannon, each one attempting to grab at the pail. Shannon quickly and strategically moved the pail to her chest and placed one hand upward to guard it. Immediately they all complied, placing them at puzzled but relaxed stance. When Shannon was sure the pail was safe, she calmly placed the pail down, so all could see the remains. Mr. Dave spoke first.

“Well done Shannon. Let’s head back to the needle. The other two groups should be returning shortly.”

There was no more tension or seriousness. The load seemed to be lifted and the energy surrounding seemed one of lightheartedness and play. The walk was only ten minutes back up the road from where they came. Damon and Shannon enjoyed the green scenery, the beautiful brick-built homes and the fields that dragged up the hills for miles. The manager even cracked a couple of jokes. The whole time the manager never revealed his identity. Shannon loved the mystery in Mr. Dave keeping his secret. It was apart of the Space Needle’s tradition. As they got closer to the Needle, Shannon thought about how much she really enjoyed spending time with Damon. It was something about him that made everything fall into place. The chemistry was undeniable, and conversation came quite naturally. Shannon just wished she understood more about the Space Needle. Shannon and her group noticed there was already a group that returned to the Space Needle before them. The male waiter and the eleven others possessed a silver pale. On the inside lied the Vitis Vinifera and the oak skins. Both groups waited in the vineyard outside the Space Needle deep in conversation for the final group to appear. Five minutes later the other group returns.

“Hey you guys! Great job!”

The golden pale contained a lighter shade. It was not the Vitis Vinifera, but the Biturica grapes. The oak skins were there as well. Hearing the waitress say this was only pale around and one that contained grapes, Shannon thought the grapes were special, and would be useful later. When no one was looking, Shannon reached in to grab a couple from the vine and stuffed them in her bra. These grapes had more of a redder tent, the kind of grapes Shannon loved more than anything. To taste them fresh off the vine, did nothing more but tempt her to spring into action. Besides, she thought, no one would notice.

“Now what do we do? All the items requested are here.” “We wait.”

The time is now 7:22 p.m., when out of nowhere the sky starts to turn pitch dark. The change in the sky’s appearance is so swift it resembled an ombre color. It continued to move upward until it engulfed the sky above the Space Needle. Suddenly, the crew notices what it is and calms down.

CHAPTER 6

The ravens were back and for a second time Shannon sees the ravens fly down, but this time, already carrying the scrolls. As they reached the bottom, instinctively the birds gave each pair their scroll. In irony, instead of Shannon being handed the scroll, this time it was offered to Damon. No one had ever seen the ravens come for a second time. Neither had the ravens ever carried the scrolls in the sky. Although the crew was startled, they still accepted the invitations. Everyone opened and their scroll. Rapidly, night fell upon them in mid-May, with their eyes pointed up to the sky, no one noticed the level swirl of darkness in a cloud of dust approaching them. Before anyone could move, it bombarded the crowd, everyone fell sick and turned into ghastly silhouetted translucent souls. That is, all except for Shannon. The souls then gravitationally magnetized to the whirl of darkness disappearing in its midst. At that instant Shannon’s whole appearance turned white, her blood felt as if it left her face, neck, torso, and legs, impounding her feet with nothing more than heaviness and a color of crimson. As one of the scrolls lay open on the ground, Shannon read it as follows:

DARKNESS

OF

DEATH

“I take a life. I eat for life.”

Slowly coming slightly out of shock, and before she could run, Shannon also sees on the scroll in small letters a clue to help the others. Shannon reads aloud.

“I take a life. I eat for life.”

“I know where that is. I’ve seen that quote at the Glacier Washington. I must get there. Maybe there’s an antidote.”

Shannon boards the Space Needle, takes a seat in Mr. Dave’s spot, buckles up, and very hastily presses the huge bronze button that shuts the tall door. The same nerving loud rumble happened again, paired with the same alarming jerk upward. Shannon gave the Space Needle no direction. It just took off.

Ten minutes later, the Space Needle arrived at its destination. The landing was hard this time, but Shannon was prepared, considering the mission she set forth to undergo. Shannon immediately unstrapped her seatbelt and pressed the huge bronze button. The door lifted to the tall ceiling and Shannon took off in the cold and windy glaciered town. There were vacant stores, but also the beautiful glaciers in the distance. With the cold breaking through her light-leathered jacket, Shannon knew she had to stay focused on finding the quote.

The classic quote was stated by Washington during one of his battles. The story goes the soldiers were extremely sick due to the cold weather at the battlefield. Many of them lost their appetites and so Washington found it encouraging to say “I take a life. I eat for life. It’s all the same.” As the story, this is only when the soldiers began to eat for strength to fight in the war.

Within a couple of minutes Shannon spotted the flag with the quote. It was hard to see due to the wind causing it to wave back and forth, but she was sure of the location. Shannon visited the spot only a week prior. Of course, it was much busier and there were plenty of people around to engage with or ask questions at the time. Then she remembered being in the mind trip with the space needle. Everything seems so lonesome here. Pushing her thoughts to the side, Shannon did not want to succumb, knowing that would only frighten her more and sidetrack her from finding what she needed. When she reached the flag, Shannon could see it was such, and took solace by entering the shop. Shannon noticed the store was completely empty. Shannon saw a grayish brown tinted brick structure and a cashier counter for items to be placed during purchasing. On the other side Shannon noticed a grape crusher consisting of a large plastic balloon used by wineries to inflate the bag which gently breaks the skin and allows the juice to drain out. There were no grapes around. So, Shannon quickly took the grapes out of her bra, as well as an oak skin that was sticking to the grape. She was so glad she didn’t eat them. Shannon immediately placed the 6 grapes and oak skin in the balloon, for she was familiar with wine vineyards and new how to make wine. After about 5 minutes, the wine was done. There was only one small plastic cup near the balloon. Shannon emptied the juice into the cup and headed back towards the Space Needle. She was about twenty feet away from the Needle when the same thing happened again. The sky turned dark as midnight. The swirl of dark clouded dust rashly moved towards her. Again, Shannon’s whole appearance turned white, her blood felt as if it left her face, neck, torso, and legs, impounding her feet with nothing more than heaviness and a color of crimson.

Chapter 7

This time Shannon new she had to stay put and it was much more to the dark figure than before. The ghastly figure now appeared to have a shape of a being. Seconds later, with ten feet in between, and height of ten feet, the being begins to speak, halting Shannon’s weighted feet in place. Speaking very slowly, with words whispered, dragged, and demonic, the dark figure directs his full attention to Shannon.

“Whyyyyy isssss it thattttt yooouuuu loooook soooo frightennned?............ It wassssss yooooou whooooo callllllled uponnn meeeeee. Yooouuu shhhhould beee mooorre carefulll with yourrrrr worrrds. Stating thingsssss liiiiike Washington isssss toooo die for and issss breathtaking innnn one sennnntence can attract the lessssss attractive vennntures of the Space Needle. And since thisssss issss mmmyyyy first timme, I want tooo maaake it verrrry memorable.”

Unable to catch her breath, her feet now ready to explode, Shannon knows she must engage in the conversation as an attempt to undo the catastrophe. With one question arising to her bloodless brain, and quivering sensation throughout her whole body, Shannon puts all faith in her stuttering words.

“Wh wh who are you?” “IIIII ammmmm the nammmme yoooou read froooommm the scroollll. Thhhee Darkness of Deeath.”

“Wh wwh wh what do you want from me?”

“IIIIII wooouulld loooove for yoouuuu to joooooiinnnn mmmmeeee, but IIIII can seeee you’rre tooooo shaaakkkeeennn at thhhe moment, sooo foooorrrr nooowww I’llll settle. IIIIII waaaaannnntttt mmmmmyyyyy llllliiffe back.”

“Your life.” “Yesssss. IIIII thought yoooou could giiiivvve me yourrrsss. You’rrrrre the lassssst liiifffe toooo die.” “NO! You can’t have my life!” “Arrrrrre yoooou soooo surrrre? Jussssst looook at yoouurrr friends.”

Despite the sarcasm, and the knowingly power of the figure, Shannon had never been surer in her life, but then, souls appeared in the dark figure. Shannon could now see the faces of Damon, Mr. Dave, and the rest of the crew members from the Space Needle. The transcending loud agonizing voices shout over top of one another and out to Shannon, pleading with her to save their life. Shannon knew she had to think of something quick before she became one with the glob of misery. Plus, it was now 7:47p.m. The Space Needle had to return by 8:00 p.m., or they all would be stuck in this space forever. Looking at the plastic cup in her hand, Shannon did the unspeakable.

“Here is your life.” “Hahhahhaaa. A plastic cup? Theerree isss noooo liiiife innnnn aa plasssstic cupp.” “It’s not just the cup. It’s what’s inside the cup that is the life.” “Hoooowww sooo?” “I have some of the finest and freshest wine you could ever dream of. I once heard an interesting quote “I take a life. I eat for life.” Why not take this life, and then eat for life? The benefits of wine are much purer than a human. See wine lives in only the soul it encompasses. It has its environment and is taken care of by its owner. It is treated with much care and appreciation, for it creates abundance and wellness to all those in contact with it. Not only that, but it ages well. The only downside is knowing your limitations when duping with it. The soul of wine is whatever the person handling sees in it and gives it. Human life is much more complicated. It doesn’t age well, nor will it give you what you want, not even sometimes with manipulation. Human life has its own personality and at times will go against the grain or your will. Human life does not taste magnificent and only will produce much more chaos or contrast within. Human…….”

“Okkkkaay. IIIII hear yoooouu. Giiivvve meeee thhhe cuuup.” “Only if you would spare the life of the Space Needle crew and my own.” “Hahhahaahhhahahahahahahhahahha. Hahhahahahahahahaahha. Nooootttt jussssttt youuurrr liiiffe, but for theee otherrrrrs asss welllll. Doooo yooouu taaakkke mmeeee foooorrrr a fooooollll?” “No. Never. I’ll put it to you this way. There is an everlasting supply of wine all around here. A human life can’t do what a lifetime of wine can do for you.” “Huhhhhh…. Yoooouuuu arrree verrryy cleeeevvverr Shhhhhhaaaaannnnnoooonnnn, buuuutttttt IIIIII nnneeeeedddd toooo taassste thheee wiiinne fiiirsst.” “Hhhh how did you know my name?” “Dammmmooonnnn tolllddd meeeee. Hahahhahhahahahhhahahha.” “Aww. Hang on you guys. Please.” “They aaarrrreee minnnne. Nooooowwww giiiveee meee thhhhe wiinnnee.” “What about our deal?” “I’llll thhhiiiinkkk abbbouuut ittt. Onnncee I geeetttt a taaaasstte of thhhatt irrressisssstibllle wiiinnnee………, yoouu caannn have theem.” “Okay. Here it is.”

Without hesitation Shannon handed the tiny white plastic cup filled with wine over to the Darkness of Death. It immediately gulped the wine down. With sure satisfaction the ghastly silhouetted dark figure continued to hold the cup up to its mush. There were drops of cranberry red liquid falling to the sides and hitting the ground. Shannon stood watching the object of vengeance, waiting for what would happen next.

CHAPTER 8

Within an instant, the darkness had evaporated, and the crew appeared. Overwhelming pleas of happiness and joy took wave at Glacier Washington. The glee and cheers so loud everyone from the other side of space could hear the forty-eight passengers of the Space Shuttle. In fact, their echoes ricocheted off the glaciers almost two hundred feet away. No one went without thanking the courageous and clever Shannon Doris. It was to her fine caliber and quick thinking that saved their lives.

Within just the nick of time, the forty-four guess, along with the manager, Mr. Dave, the waiter, and waitress hastily begin to board the Space Needle. It was now 7:49 p.m. Mr. Dave wasted no time pressing the big round bronze button for the door to shut. The Space Needle immediately took off, with much more speed than the first two times, while still having a mind of its own. Damon and Shannon couldn’t help the excitement of being with one another again. They chatted immensely as if they missed each other dearly. The ethereal events that took place seemed to be unfathomable for them both, but somehow it brought them closer.

“Damon.” “Yes Shannon.” “Do you really think the Darkness of Death, let you guys go?” “No.” “What do you think happened?” “Remember when I said Washington’s wife Martha loved grapes.” “Yes.” “Okay. She loved the grapes because of the wine. Different shaded grapes make different wine. The grapes you took from the last pale were different from the rest. Those were a little lighter and are used to make Merlot. What made you choose those grapes, instead of the darker ones?” “I just am attracted to redder things.” “Well, I believe you are much like the former wife of the president. I believe the Darkness of death is the ghost of Washington.” “Why on earth would you believe that?” “Washington fought in the army and at times did what he had to do for the sake of establishing this country. There were many lives lost in the war. Some by the hands of Washington. The quote on the bottom of the scroll was one of his most famous words. At times, his life lived as a soldier, as well as the passing of his wife from an illness, haunts his soul. All it takes is the love of his wife’s favorite wine for him to release his pain. Therefore, we only serve Merlot at the Space Needle.” “Wow. All of this for a taste of wine.” “No. It was exactly what you said. All of this, for a taste of the purest life.” “Ah ha. Would you like to go out with me again?” “I would love to. Dinner at 6p.m?” “NO! Breakfast at 7 a.m.” “Wohhh. I’m going to have to set my alarm for that one.”

The Space Needle lands exactly at 8p.m. The mind trip is over. All has returned to normal. The guests are seated at their tables finishing their glass of Merlot, toasting to Shannon and Damon. As they stepped into the elevator that led them all the way down to the ground to exit, Shannon could not resist one last burning question.

“Hey Damon.” “Yes.” “What was it like inside the Darkness of Death?” “Ughhh. I rather not. Let’s save that conversation for our next date.” “Okay.”

THE END

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