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Continuing our abridged serialization of Kathleen Bodden-Harris’ book “Quest on the Marl Road”

Part 47
A New Beginning

Almost immediately, she answered him. “I don’t think we could find any finer place to live.  The neighbors are so great and they literally look out for you.”  She paused as she considered her feelings for him.  Her warm admiration was evolving to a deeper affection.  “I would love to begin a new home and life here with you.”

She then added, “Speaking of the neighbors, Olivia is so wise and beautiful.  I love listening to her and Great Cave.  Buffy was really quiet though.”

“Oh yeah, Buffy. Now there’s a real character!” Lenny went on to tell of the Bat’s quirky personality.  “Trust me; Buffy being quiet is an extraordinary occasion.  Once she gets to know you, you can’t shut her up or even get a word in edgewise.   She’s a very caring soul and a wonderful friend.  Just make sure she gets her rest or she’ll really get batty.”

They both chuckled softly as they soaked in the warm, soft night breezes together.

Lenny looked around the neighborhood.  He felt optimistic and enthusiasm was seeping back into him again.  Something was pulling his attention to a nearby Seagrape Tree cluster.  He excused himself from Chloe and followed the urge to investigate.  There was no noise, no stirring; yet something seemed to draw him closer.  He found a large abandoned crab hole barely visible on the edge of the remaining foliage.  He turned around to study the location.  This would be an ideal spot to build his new home with Chloe.  The sea’s edge was a clear shot, safely in the distance, at the end of the Dark Path.  All big black round things (or cars and trucks, as the humans called them) could go no further on the road here.  No Human homes were anywhere in sight.  The surrounding trees and plants were lush and safely tucked into the jagged bluff’s edge.  They had successfully weathered the war with little or no damage.  The Great Cave offered a safe refuge should war again break out.   Lenny was soundly convinced that this would be just the right place to start a new home!  Something near the opening of the hole caught his attention again. A single Seagrape had been placed at the entrance of the hole.  He looked up to see where the fruit may have dropped from.  Bathed in the bright moonlight, it didn’t seem logical that the fruit had survived the storm.  He was sure it hadn’t been there when he first came upon the hole.  He thought for a moment, then a smile lit up his face.  He surveyed the ocean, and looked up to the lofty bluff behind him, and then higher above to the sparkling lights in the night sky.  A comforting spirit enveloped him.

He called out softly, “Thanks buddy!  It’s perfect!”  He decided to wait until morning to show Chloe.

He returned to Chloe and snuggled up next to her.  Lenny leaned in and whispered, “I have a surprise to show you in the sunlight.”

She looked at him in delight.  “I have a surprise for you now.”  She opened the broad reach of her two large claws to point out the panoramic stage of the night sky.  It was perfectly reflected in the black velvet ocean.   While they both turned their heads to watch the stars, a single light with a glittering tail whisked across the sky in front of them.  This was a perfect touch for an evening of triumph and new beginnings.  In the comforting claws of Chloe, Lenny thought to himself, “Ah yes, time to celebrate!”



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