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   Chapter 52 No.52

High Steaks By Christina Engela Characters: 5828

Updated: 2018-06-30 19:02

In the large corral behind the barn, and in the open grazing land behind that, what looked like a tent-town had sprung up, and hundreds and hundreds of people were milling about there. Some had campfires going, and a waiting Cindy-Mei Winter could actually hear the strains of a concertina playing…well, something. Just then, a quick bright flash and a faint sound that sounded almost like a slinky rushing up a flight of stairs, announced the arrival of Gary – and a rather large stack of bulky, dusty crates.

"Hello, love!" He greeted, quickly crossing the almost two meter distance to her, and gave her tight squeeze and a quick peck on the lips.

"Well, hello there!" She smiled at him. "I can see you've been busy!"

"Yeap." Gary smiled. "And you! Quite a lot of 'guests' we dropped off at this party!"

"It would have been a lot harder without these remotes!" Mei chuckled. "I think we owe Scrooby a real big thank you gift!"

"Totally!" Gary agreed, pointing at the trove of crates. "Remember that old underground emergency shelter Scrooby told us about? The one the settlers built just after arriving on Deanna?"

"The one they forgot all about and accidentally sealed over?" Mei nodded. "When they built the tarmac at the space port on top of it?"

"The very same!" Gary grinned. "Well, it had everything in it we're gonna need!"

An elderly man arrived, accompanied by about ten slightly younger volunteers, and introduced himself as Nathan Forrest (formerly a warrant officer in logistics) – and took delivery of the crates Gary had brought. He was very polite, even calling him 'Mr. Beck the Badfeller'!

"They're all yours, man!" Gary grinned at Forrest. "Put it all to good use!"

Forrest and his crew began exami

ng in a concentration camp, and brought them up to speed on current events on the ranch. Marla got all quiet, and sat there staring into her coffee. Fred knew a little about vampires, especially the ones that were older than – well, ordinary humans. When they got to live so long, it wasn't that they felt less… it's just that they tended to handle their emotions a little better. They were very private beings – and the older they got, the more they valued their privacy.

It was bad enough that Jenny's hands had begun to tremble slightly as she fell silent and quickly brought her mug to her lips for something to do. Fred had a feeling Marla de Bris would cry for Danielle – but later on, when she was alone.

* * *

It was shortly after the su – er, Ramalama sank below the horizon. The stars came out and dotted the night sky. Dong, Deanna's larger moon, lit up the night. Clouds hung low over the western horizon, and gradually the silence of twilight became a stage for the nocturnal sounds of home. Red-horned wildebeest settled down in the long-grass of the open fields still warm with the scent of daylight as crickets began to chirp cautiously.

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