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"I will pass through this world but once. Any good, therefore, that I can do or any kindness I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it for I shall not pass this way again." 1859 Household Words Weekly Journal

Space Rocker: The Novel

by Michael Steenbergen


----------------Chapter 1

1  2  3  4  5  6

7  8  9  10  11

Chapter 2

12 13 14 15 16

17 18 19 20 21

Chapter 3

22 23 24 25 26

18 19 20 21 22

Chapter 4

22  22  23  24  25

26  27  28  29  30

31 32

Chapter 3


“You are no prisoner, my Lord Rocker. Our instructions are to provide for your welfare and safety in all matters. Forgive us if we seem intrusive. The fever remains a strong possibility. Please trust us about this.”

“I’m sorry. I didn’t get it. I’ll take the local medical advice and accept a nurse for the night. I may give Pajaro a real work out with the ‘my Lord’ thing and all. I hope he serves a good a breakfast like you do, Pedra.” Rocker had figured out the family connections and realized that Cenisa, Pedra and Pajaro were all cousins. “Tell Cenisa I send my regards and say good night.”

Pajaro reached out and hugged Pedra. “Good night, cousin.”

“Good night, Pajaro. May the gods find you healthy and strong when ywake. Good, night, my Lord Rocker. Treat Pajaro as your trusted friend. He will be.” Spear in her hand, she disappeared back into the dark as suddenly and quietly as she had appeared.

Rocker and Pajaro stepped into the hut. Rocker felt the strain of a long day and exercise. He immediately lay on his mat. He gestured to the mat La Pedrita had been using and Pajaro seated himself.

“Thanks, Pajaro. I enjoyed the swim and the visit. You, your family and your people impress me very much.”

“We mean to please.” Pajaro responded. “Now let’s rest so you will be totally healed in a day or two.”

“Good night.”

Pajaro extinguished the torch, placing it in the sand to keep the smoke from filling the hut. Both men made themselves comfortable and quickly went to sleep.

The morning dawned on a new day for Rocker. He opened his eyes to Pajaro bringing breakfast into the hut. The cooking hearth in Rocker’s hut was not stoked or fired up. The food, again, was prepared somewhere else. They enjoyed the meal. Today it consisted of eggs cooked over easy in a ranchero style with red hot sauce smothering them. Pajaro brought beans, potatoes and wheat tortillas instead of the masa rolls today. Melon and papaya finished off their meal.

After eating, Pajaro took Rocker directly to his uncle, the Chief. La Cenisa had told The Feathered One about Rocker’s need to send a message so he had sent a runner to summon the two young men to his quarters. Again, Rocker was surprised at the Western manner in which the Chief conversed with him.

“Sit down, Space Rocker. How did you sleep?” the Chief greeted them. He motioned for Rocker to sit on the sheepskin rug near his mat on which Little Feather sat cross legged. He also motioned for Pajaro to sit.

“I slept very well, Feathered One, Chief of the Chapeck Anneal. Under the care and ministrations of your family, I am healing most quickly. I thank both Pajaro and Pedrita for their excellent care. I also thank your Daughter, La Cenisa, the Queen of your people, for her gracious audience yesterday. And I thank you, Feathered One for the hospitality that you have extended me.”

“It is nothing. My village is your village. What message must you send and where? I will have it delivered immediately if you are able to stay with us a short while. As Cenisa told you, I wish you to learn of the past and your heritage. In two more days we will visit a repository of our history, The Sacred Caves of my people. We will have a celebration in your honor. Then you and I will enter the sacred chambers. There is much you must learn there.”

“I will be very pleased to stay with you. The message will stop my friends from mounting a large on going search. I filed no flight plan, so they would not have any idea where to start, but they will do something.”

“Here are a pen and paper from your things. Write the message and I will have it delivered within hours. I have a communications network and capabilities that would shock you, Rocker, my friend.”

Space Rocker took a moment to write out a note.

Major discovery. Staying with indiginents. All is well. Two to three weeks and I will return. Dr. James Duncan, Professor of Archeology. P.S. Travel safely through the universe.”

When Rocker handed the note to the Chief, the Feathered One smiled. It flattered him that Rocker had quoted him in the brief note. The salutation was an important one that Rocker would come to understand thoroughly in the days to come. It also showed the Chief a like mindedness in the lost family member that would be crucial to Rocker’s learning the ways of his newly found people.

The Chief begged his leave until the evening, and the two young men left the hut. Again, Rocker did not have the opportunity he desired to visit at length with the Chief. However, Pajaro appeared to be integral in the ruling family, so a day with him would provide an in depth anthropological look into the structure of the tribe.

To the contrary, Pajaro would have nothing of serious conversation. He was intent they wind their way past the bathing pool to an area Rocker had not seen yet. A small clearing appeared in the dense jungle growth and Rocker could see nearly a dozen young native men kicking a ball back and forth.

“Come on, join us! It is the seventh day. We play football this morning. Cenisa, Pedrita, and my Uncle are all busy until tonight so today you are my captive companion.” Pajaro ran in to the middle of the clearing and slapped hands with the other tribesmen as he passed them. Again, Rocker thought this seemed very western and not ancient at all. It could have been a group of young people anywhere in the world, of any station in life, just out for a fun game together.

Rocker walked into the clearing to join the group, and a swirling wind came across the field, stirring up the dust and grass to make a small whirlwind. The distinctive funnel shape of this Peruvian ‘dust devil’ moved directly towards Rocker. As it reached him it slowed and whirled directly around him. Rocker lifted his arms to protect his eyes, and for a moment, the young tribesmen around him saw something bigger than life.


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