“Our love is a river that’s always flowing”
The following preview is of Chapter X of INNER MAGNETS, Volume Two of our quantum fiction/magic realism quartet, THE TAMMABUKKU CHRONICLES. This chapter is the fourth and final chapter of the “New York arc”, and the protagonists, David and Lia, are preparing to go home to their Yorkshire manor house, the formerly abandoned Beak’s End.
David never completely got used to people recognizing him, but this was New York and people were cool, so they were left alone. They did the West Village, sauntering the winding blocks, watching life as it is now, and doing the time rollback to the 1920s Bohemian Village, the early 1960s folk scene Village, and then the late ‘60s when his grandmother was a hippie goddess. One day they walked down to the Battery and then made their way back up through Tribeca, Soho, Little Italy, Chinatown, and then to the Lower East Side and Orchard Street, once the noisiest, dirtiest and most densely populated street in the world. As they strolled along in the early spring rain, there were only a few people on the now clean and quiet street. That night they had dinner at Pellegrino’s on Mulberry Street with Sphinx. Since Dane was currently performing in The Lion King, he couldn’t join them.
After dinner, the three of them walked around Little Italy. It was a warm night and they drank espresso on one of the open terraces. Since Lia wanted to introduce David to more of her relatives, she decided to video-call her widowed grandfather on Skype. Although Walter Bailey didn’t care for most twenty-first century rock, he told David that he’d heard a few of Oblivion’s songs and liked them, particularly “Merlin” and “The Boogeyman”.
Lia wanted to video-call her grandparents on Kirsten’s side as well, Irene and Matthew Carruthers, but said she was hoping Irene was at one of her canasta games. When David asked why, she replied that although she loved all her grandparents, Irene could be problematic. Sphinx gave David a look that said, Oh yeah. Unfortunately, Irene was home. Lia took a deep breath, telling herself the odds of her grandmother acting up in a five-minute time frame were slim. Irene and Matthew seemed elated to hear from her but were confused by the sight of David.
“I guess you’re back with the frontman for Oblivion,” Matthew began. “Don’t get me wrong, Lia, I’m happy. I’m just wondering why you didn’t tell us the good news.”
“Yes, Grandpa—David and I are back together. I apologize for not telling you and Grandma sooner. It just happened a week ago, and I’ve been so busy.”
Irene’s eyes widened. “Busy? And you took him back after he dumped you?”
Lia covered her face in embarrassment. Only David and Sphinx could hear her say, “Earth eat me up!” Prying her hands from her face, David made eye contact long enough to let her know that Irene’s remark didn’t bother him, which seemed to make her feel better. Sphinx put a sympathetic hand on her shoulder.
“Irene!” Matthew scolded. “Look at how you embarrassed Lia! They obviously worked out their problems. I know my granddaughter and I trust her judgment. This wouldn’t have happened unless it was supposed to.” With an apologetic smile, he addressed David. “I apologize, David. My wife has a tendency not to think before she speaks. You seem like a very nice young man.”
Sighing, Irene said with a transparent fake smile, “It’s so nice to meet you, Mr. Pierson.” David could only reply to her fakeness with an equally fake smile. Being called Mr. Pierson made him feel like his father’s age, and Irene Carruthers’ smarmy voice had a tone that David found repulsive.
Since neither David nor Lia had seen the stage version of The Lion King, they attended the Broadway play with Athena, Kirsten, and Sphinx, all of whom had seen it many times. David enjoyed doing the ultimate New York tourist thing like seeing The Lion King, especially with Dane in the cast. After the show, David treated them to dinner at the iconic Sardi’s. Sphinx, becoming emotional, said that he was going to miss Lia, but he was thrilled everything worked out, and that he ended up playing a big role. David replied that he and Dane had a standing invitation to visit Beak’s End and stay as long as they wanted.
He confided to Sphinx that he and Dane would have a major reason to come to England before the year was out. Sphinx knew what he meant. Smiling, he shook his head. “I’m in awe when I watch you and Lia together. One would think you’d been physically a couple for years.”
David laughed. “Yeah, imagine if I were to ask a girl I met the week before to come live with me in England. It would be insane. But Lia and I… it’s that way with us. Our love is a river that’s always flowing.”