CHAPTER SIX HUNDRED and SEVENTY-FIVE
“Will we walk time again?” Nelson asked.
“I don’t know,” Hedone said. “Probably. I’m hoping that it won’t take that long.”
“We were going to do a lot of press about the find,” Nelson said.
“Do the lawyers have the coordinates?” Nelson asked.
“The land is still owned by the Templars,” Hedone said. “As long as you can back up the claim to be the Grand Master with something more than a sword, we should be in the clear.”
“I have all the papers now,” Nelson said. “My name is on all of the deeds to property including all of the swords. Since my dad woke up, he’s been working to authenticate my claim. It just made it through the French courts.”
“Good,” Ares said.
“Why don’t you plan to leave tonight?” Hedone asked.
“Tonight?” Nelson asked.
“It’s soon enough,” Hedone said. “We’ll get out of your hair so you can wrap up what you’re doing.”
“But I have to go? Now?” Nelson asked. “This morning, we thought. . .”
“I’m truly sorry but yes,” Ares said. “You have to leave tonight, at the latest.”
“I’ll get ready,” Nelson said. “We leave tonight? What time?”
“Eight o’clock,” Hedone said.
“I’ll be ready,” Nelson said, looking thoroughly depressed. “How long will I be gone?”
“A couple of months,” Ares said at the same time that Hedone said, “Few days, maybe a week.”
Nelson smiled at them.
“Will it be worth it?” Nelson asked.
“For the world?” Hedone asked. “Yes. For you personally? I’d also have to say yes. Everything you desire in your life is on the other side of this quest. Let’s just get it over with so you can get on with your life.”
Nelson nodded. His computer dinged and he turned back to look at it. A moment later, he looked for the Gods and they were gone.
“How long do you think you’ll need?” Ava asked, coming out of her office.
“No idea,” Nelson said. “They just said anywhere between a few days and a number of months.”
“Don’t worry,” Ava said. “We’ll put you on leave.”
“You won’t replace me?” Nelson asked. “You should probably replace me.”
“Not a chance,” Ava said. “Just come home to us.”
“And remember, we’re here if you need us,” Leslie said. “Any of us. At any time. We’re available to you and anything you need.”
Nelson nodded his thanks.
“I should probably go see my dad,” Nelson said. “He’s still pretty sick and . . .”
“Just go,” Ava said. “Let us know how we can help.”
Nelson nodded. He packed up what little he’d unpacked. Fran came out of the lab to hug Nelson good-bye. Bob came from across the hallway to see him off. Ava and Leslie hugged him for luck. He left the lab. Standing on the elevator, he could see his teammates standing in the hallway waving at him.
He tried to smile to show some optimism, but he felt like he was going to his death. Sighing, he made his way home.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow...
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