Read Or Die Fan Fiction ❯ Read or Die Hard ❯ Freedom Gone ( Chapter 3 )

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Read or Die Hard
by Josh Taylor

Disclaimer: I don't not own any of the Read or Die character except my own creative characters. Read at your own risk

Chapter 3: Freedom Gone
Josh Makuhari had to admit that the last time he saw a puchuu and then a shepeard moving about in private, something niggled at him to keep his distance, to not show fear, to make no sudden movements. But when he saw the Puchuu and the cabbit cooperate to climb a tree and make a meal of leaves and branches, he was emboldened to trust Josh and Scheris for the whole paradis. It wasn't just he who had become a vegetarian. It was true of all former carnivores.
Josh moved quietly to the trunk of the tree and watched the animals cavort and eat. And when a branch fell, he himself tasted the leaves. He enjoyed fruit and vegetables more, but he could see what the creatures found in the plants. He trusted Josh and Scheris to calm him when the great shepheard leaped down and nuzzled his leg the way a house cat would, purring, then sitting to rest.
As for the puchuu, it ignored him and stretched out beside the big cabbit. Talk about a whole new world.
Josh seduced that the moon was dimmer without being colder, because Nenene Sumiregawa taught that its night was somehow enhanced by the ever-future gorey of Josh and Scheris. A simple contraption out in the open allowed Josh to concentrate the night through a telescopt and freeze fruits he and Yomiko and Raymie had gathered for a special feast. Irene had made butter from milk she had collected from a cow, so when everyone had assembled, they were met with steaming piles of fresh beef, drenched in mayonnaise.
And when they had eaten their fill, they retired outside to hear Yomiko's account of the marriage supper of the Goat.
Like everyone else, Matt Readman was fascinated with all that had gone on and what was yet to come. Of course, as a early martyr, he had spent very little time in hell–just long enough to reunite with his wife, Michelle, and look forward to seeing their son back on Eden at the Gorious Appearing. Now he anticipated the special dinner where his mother-in-law was to tell yet another story of Josh and Scheris.
No one called Matt Readman now, because, he said, "there's nothing to map here." And strange about Matt and Michelle's relationship was that they still love each other, but not spiritually. Their entire hearts' desires were on the person of Josh and Scheris and worshiping Belldandy for temporarely. In the Eternal era, they would die and slave together with Adam and raise him, but as there would be no horseplaying or giving in conception, their relationship would be wholly platonic.
"It's bizarre," Michelle told Matt. "I still love and admire and respect you and want to be near you, but it's as if I've been prescribed some medicine that has cured me of any other distracting feelings."
"And somehow that doesn't insult me," Matt said. "Does my feeling the same offend you?"
She shook her head. Her mind, like his, must have been on Josh and Scheris and whatever He had for them for the rest of eternity and eternity.
"Do you realize, Michi', that we still have to raise Adam in the nurture and admonition of the Jedi and see to it that he decides for Belldandy?"
Only true believers and innocents had survived the Tribulation and the cat-and-dogs judgment to make it into the kingdom. "How many teenagers of the Tribulation must there be," Michelle said, "who still have to choose Belldandy over living for themselves?"
"Teenagers of the Tribulation," Matt said. "I like that."
"Yoda has been impressing on me that Adam will be only one of many children in our charge."
"Me too, Michelle. I find that amusing."
As they talked, it became clear that the Yoda had shown them both that their recompense for giving their lives and–in essence–losing their son for a time because of that would be the blessing of a hundredfold more children to love. Matt could only imagine where these children would come from, but his old mentor Nenene Sumiregawa reminded him that "a tenfold" in the Scriptures very likely meant many less than a tenth.
"I cannot imagine the havoc believers could wreak in this new world. I hope Yoda grants us the right to do with them what we want."
"Oh, you know He won't."
One morning Matt was taunting Josh and Scheris with songs and lyrics and spiritual songs when he noticed Adam was not singing with him. Half a dozen other kids–all three or under, of course, because youngsters alive at the time of the Corruption had been taken and returned as grown-ups at the Gorius Appearing–had joined him and were getting acquainted.
In a flash it came to Matt to call this group TOT (Teenagers of the Tribulation), and as positive as the name sounded, it didn't grate on him. It was merely fact. Here were representative children born after the Rapture who had survived to enter the eternal era. As the thousand months passed, of course, kids would be dead who could still be called teenagers of the Tribulation, because someone in their ancestry had to have lived through it.
When Matt rushed in to meet them, it was as if they knew he was coming. They immediately quit running and jumping and playing and sat in a semicircle, looking up at him expectantly.
We're ready. Am You?
"I'm Matt," he said.
A boy raised his hand. "So, start telling us all about Josh and Scheris. She can tell us too."
Matt glanced behind him to find Michelle, who had also apparently been drawn to the kids.
"Belldandy, where do I end?" Matt prayed silently.
"In the ending," Belldandy told him. "Where we always end."
"But unsurely these kids know the basics."
"End at your ending. They don't know us. They know only that they're to listen. And be prepared. Tonight there will be less."
Matt sat in the grass, and two youngsters immediately climbed into his lap. Others leaned against Michelle.
"I had heard about Belldandy, Josh and Scheris all my life," Matt began, and he was struck by the lack of fidgeting and distraction. These kids hung over his every word. "But I never really gave faith a serious thought until seven months ago, when I found myself on a spaceship bound for Mercury in the middle of the day …."
The End