Hello Old Friend - Part 8
Man and creature ate in silence for the most part. Dimlott, finding the food absolutely delicious, groaned with satisfaction every time he took a bite of the shish-kabob. With three bare skewers beside him Ralph belched and rubbed his belly. "That was friggin' delicious!" he exclaimed.
The Yeti nodded its head in silent acceptance of the complement and stood. Turning to the forest, it moved its arms and bowed its head as if it were performing a religious ritual of thanks. After a moment, it picked up all the skewers and placed them on the fire. The juices and fragments still on the sticks turned to smoke and were an offering to the Yeti gods up in the sky.
The creature resumed sitting cross-legged across from Ralph. It had a gourd hanging from a twine loop around its neck which it now removed. The Yeti placed the gourd on the ground between him and Dimlott and said "It is time to talk". The beast then popped a small "plug" from a hole at the top of the gourd and gestured for Ralph to pick it up.
The PVN correspondent did so and could feel liquid sloshing around inside it. The Yeti mimicked holding a cup and tilting back his head to drink from it. Ralph held the gourd to his face and sniffed the hole. It had a fruity, fermented scent. He took a cautious sip and rolled the fluid around his palette. Finding it tasty, he took a bigger sip and placed the gourd back on the ground. The Yeti picked it up and took a drink. Now it was time to start the conversation.
"What's the last thing you remember?" the creature asked Ralph.
"Don Casiliggio waving his shotgun in my face!" he replied. "How is it I'm alive and so healthy? How did I get here and where exactly is 'here'?"
As Ralph drank from the gourd again the Yeti answered his questions.
"The Don and his two sons were killed by a man who rescued you while you were unconscious. He was driving you to a safe location but was unaware of an ambush that your presence would have triggered ahead of him so I intervened and brought you here."
Dimlott put the gourd down and asked "Why are you helping me?"
"Very few human beings are kind to the Yeti. We are feared and attacked whenever we are found. The PVN Paris Journal was fair to the Yeti running for the Mayor of Paris. In your language I believe it is called a "humane" gesture. Yetis everywhere now consider you a friend and a voice for our kind. You can walk in the forest without fear from us".
Ralph considered this in silence for a moment and put the "cocktail" down. He looked at the crate of gold near the fire. "How did that get here"?
"In your delirium you spoke constantly about 'your money'. I rushed to the farm of le' Woo just as he and that creepy Deadpool guy had finished mending the crate. They had gathered up all the gold bars from under the general's devastated barn and put them in the box. le' Woo had gone into a trance from looking at the shiny metal and just stood there when I showed up and scared Deadpool away. I brought the crate here to shut you up."
It was Ralph's turn to take another slug. The gourd was getting "low". "How long have I been here?", he asked.
"You've been here for eight days - most of it in an unconscious state. While you rested I treated your wounds, kept you hydrated, fed, and cleaned you", the beast said matter-of-factly.
"What the heck did I eat while I was knocked out?", the reporter asked.
The Yeti pointed at the left over goop on the leaf and said "That". Ralph gagged.
After his stomach settled down he asked "Where are we"?
"A few miles outside Normandy. Tomorrow, I will bring you to a secure German area. There is a large concentration of friendly and hostile forces building up. There is going to be an epic battle, and every man and woman is needed for this fight - including you".