Call Waiting 8- Haven n Hell
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The frail old woman, sat up straight in her chair, cleared her throat and began the story of her family and the legacy of Haven.
My grandfather….the patriarch of not only my family but of this town and it’s inhabitants, was what is know today as a religious zealot. His spiritual leanings were only surpassed by his wealth.
He earned his riches in the stock market. His finger was always…ahead….of the pulse, I guess you could say. He believed he was given that gift by right of a higher being….and he had no qualms about telling everyone about that given right.
His penchant for picking the right stock at the right time was unmatched.
In the religion of money…he was a god.
In the religion of life….he was labeled a fool.
He was nobody’s fool….and one day he set out to prove it.
Desperate to find a place where his spiritual leanings would be more powerful than his sense of the money market.
On his journey, he came across a beautiful woman stranded on the roadside in the country. He stopped and asked if he could be of assistance.
She said that she had already turned away 4 persons who wished to assist her and her reason was because she had “sight beyond sight” and she had seen that their intensions were not pure…..but when she looked at my grandfather she could not read him…his mind…or see the future. Her people saw that as a sign of great fortune.
She accepted his invitation for assistance. He promised to take her wherever she wanted as long as she didn’t mind hearing of his spiritual leanings….where he warned he was quite enthusiastic about.
She gladly accepted, knowing that where she was going there happened to be a great need for someone with spiritual vigor.
“Momma…I’m tired and this is boring.” Macy interrupted as she tugged at her Mother’s shirt.
Patricia looked at Macy and then at the old woman and spoke,
“I’m sorry ma’am, she is young and not much into history lessons..would you mind if she went over and lay down in the booth right over there?”
“Of course not,” she replied as she took the shawl from around her waist and handed it to Macy. “She may use this as a blanket if she wishes…”
“Say thank you.” Patricia said.
Macy looked at the old woman with sleepy eyes and replied,
“Thanks.” She looked back at her Mother and said, “I’m gonna take the phone with me…I sleep better with it close to me.”
The old woman showed a curious smile and they watched Macy saunter off over to the booth and lay down, holding the phone like a doll.
Patricia waited until the old woman returned her attention to her then asked,
“Ok…so I am guessing your grandfather was the Jim Jones or David Koresh type?…..I’m sorry…I don’t mean to jump ahead….but when do we get to the Penny part?”
The old woman replies,
“I know you are not her…but you not only have her looks but her impatience as well…..he possessed the charm and charisma of the two you spoke of but not the Armageddon tendencies or the desire to bed his followers…he was completely devoted to my grandmother. I will do my best to move the story along.”
The place he took her was an encampment in the middle of nowhere consisting of tents and make shift dwellings. The inhabitants consisted of beggars, gypsies and misfits.
The beautiful woman, introduced him around. The people of the community had never been around a man such as my grandfather. They were drawn to him and hung on his every word.
He was drawn to them as well. He saw opportunity to convey his beliefs and utilize his wealth for something more than hobnobbing in top hats and suits.
He felt he had found his people…and his people needed him as a leader.
He used his influence in the market world to find a place that his people could call home. A few stock tips in exchange for land.
He was told of an abandoned town that was going for cheap….and he jumped on it.
He loaded up his caravan of followers and led them to their promised land.
He wanted to call the place “Heaven”, but in his excitement, he registered the land and misspelled it, calling it Haven.
They settled in and began their new life. My grandfather, the beautiful gypsy woman who became his wife,
and the rest of the misfits who followed because they believed.
My grandfather traded stock tips for companies to come in and help build a nice community during the day.
At night he would write his beliefs into text form and teach them to his enthusiastic followers.
All the while, my grandmother would encourage him.
He would teach them of love, family, and perseverance. He would say that although he was a great leader…that another would be born…and that one would take them to higher ground and lead them to riches that even he could not imagine.
His people longed for that day.
A few years later….Penny was born.
“So….Penny is the messiah?” Patricia asked.
The old woman sighed, and replied,
“It was a time….long…long ago, dear. May I continue?”
Patricia nodded and glanced over at Macy who had begun to twitch in her sleep.
Macy was walking down the dark hallway toward the bedroom door, carrying the shawl in the crook of her arm. She heard shuffling from the other side. Instead of looking through the hole of the skeleton lock she turned the knob and walked in.
A few years later, my grandfathers prophesy came to fruition. They had a child and they named her Penelope.
She had his eyes….and her Mothers sight beyond sight.
From the time she was born, she was treated as the second coming of her father.
In time, she used her sight to avert troubles of their people and strengthen their faith in her abilities, which in turn gave them the faith to better themselves.
With my grandfather on the throne and Penny at his side…he was….God in Haven
“Of course, all this is town lore, part truth…part myth…part whatever has been passed on and down since it all began.” The old woman said.
Patricia asked with a confused look on her face-
“You sound a bit jaded on this history. Why?”
“Time changes perception, my dear. All of that occurred before I was born. What is true and what is not is not for me to know, it is just for me to continue the doctrine. What is true now….is this whole town uses her name for profit….not for prophet. I just want to know what happened….which is why I kept the phone that she said she would call me on. I waited over 8 decades…..for the phone to ring. It did. Shortly after….you came here…and here we are.”
The 2 woman just stared at each other. Only Macy screaming broke their gaze-
“MOMMA! MOMMA!” Macy shrieked as she shot up from the booth and onto the floor clutching the shawl in the crook of one arm and the phone in the other.
Patricia went to her side and said,
“What is it, honey? I’m right here.”
Macy looked at her Mother, then over at the frail old woman, then back at her Mother and replied in a dry tone.
“I know where Penny is and I know what happened.”
To be continued…..