Land of Sorrow: Chapter 12: Ascension

Pudgy’s body finally gave out, and the little hedgehog fell onto the snow-covered ground.  He was in a tremendous amount of pain but was still somehow awake.  The ghostly Rabbis floated silently, still focused on the center where the demonic portal had been opened.  The ghosts that had been imprisoned were still being released, with their souls turning into golden orbs that floated into the sky.  The Little hedgehog watched as his friend Angeliki was floating down from the sky.  The demigoddess landed softly beside him and nodded in acknowledgement to the ghostly holy men.  She turned her gaze towards Pudgy, and had a concerned look, but was softly smiling at him.  As she knelt, she saw her little friend was in rough shape.   

Father Aleksander and the other priests had dropped to their knees.  This was partly due to sheer exhaustion, but mainly since heaven could be clearly seen in the skies above.  Gleeful words of joy and praise were spoken in Polish, with outstretched arms towards the skies above.  The soldiers who had been slowly approaching the portal, walked slowly up towards the center of the camp.  Their guns were drawn but lowered towards the ground, as surveys were made of the area around the portal and ghostly Rabbis.  Their superior officer, Starszy Kapral Szymon walked up to the head of the local church and spoke in Polish.  After a moment passed, the lead father stood up and the two men were examining the glowing ghosts still floating in the circle of blue light upon the ground.  The younger priest Jakub looked over at Pudgy and called out in what English he knew, “Pudgy, ok?”  When the young priest called out, the superior officer looked over. 

The soldiers continued to spread out along the circle’s circumference and looked through the glowing magic.  They could see a tiny hedgehog was severely injured and laying in a pool of blood.  His quills were falling out, and had severe burns, and gouges from claws all over his body.  His winter weather gear was soaked in blood and had been shredded.  There was also a woman dressed in a white gown, and a feathered headdress with glowing blue eyes beside him.  She carefully scooped up the critter into her hands, and her hands began to glow softly with a pale white light.  The soldiers watched as the blood ceased to flow, and the hedgehog was being healed by the woman.  More words were spoken in Polish amongst the men, who watched in a mixture of curiosity and awe.

Many quiet moments passed, as the trapped souls continued to be released from the prison camp.  Their eternal torment had finally ceased to be and were being accepted into the light of the afterlife.   The floating ghost Rabbis did not speak but began to turn to survey the camp and its surrounding areas.  The sheer numbers of ghosts being released was mind boggling, but after many minutes passed, the stream began to slow.  Until the land was empty of spirits, save for the 4 Rabbis continuing their vigil.    Rabbi Francisek slowly turned back to face Pudgy and Angeliki and spoke in both Polish and in English somehow.  It sounded like a bad dubbed movie, where the audio was out of sync. “thank you Pudgy, for brining us all here together.  Finally, we have cleansed this place, and set those trapped here to rest.  Our fellow Rabbi who could not make it here today, will be most displeased he missed out on one last grand adventure.”  The holy ghost said while a small smirk formed on his translucent lips, before laughing softly.

Pudgy groaned as he sat up between Angeliki’s hands.  The little hedgehog looked up at his friend and smiled, while wiggling his nose.  The hedgehog turned around in her hands, to look up at Rabbi Franciszek, “Pudgy glad to help. Pudgy stop Kaiser, and make monsters go away forever.  But what happen to other ghost Rabbis now?”  The formerly alive Rabbi smiled, “I have lived for well over a hundred years and seen many things both good and bad.  This transformation was too much for my body to handle, so I will be returning to Eloah with my esteemed colleagues assembled here.  With one exception….” Rabbi Rudolf started to turn around slowly and cast his gaze at the hedgehog while he nodded.  “Pudgy, I have done many terrible things since I became the Kaiser.  I have much to atone for.  I will be remaining here, for now.”  As Pudgy turned around in his friend’s hands once more, he faced the former Kaiser and spoke, “what will you do?”  The ghostly man smiled, “there are more ghettos to set free.  I will free the remaining spirits trapped there.”

The ghostly Rabbi holding the Bemidbar coin nodded as he began to fade, “at that time, you can petition to return.  Though, I would very much prefer if you were able to locate the Bareshit coin first.”  The Vayikra coin Rabbi nodded as he began to fade as well, “I concur, it would be best for that to be returned.  Lest it fall into the hands of evil.”  Rabbi Rudolf nodded, “then it is agreed upon what my course of action is to be.  Pudgy, thank you, thank you for all that you have done.”  The other ghostly holy men nodded and spoke in unison, “thank you.”  A soft glow started to fill the entire camp, causing the snows to melt away.  Three blue beams of light stretched high into the sky once more, and the ghostly Rabbis started to ascend into the sky.  Pudgy waved as they started to fly towards the golden glow in the sky.

The trio first floated slowly, as they continued to survey the camp for any remaining trapped souls.  Once they were satisfied that all had been released, they flew quickly towards the golden glow of heaven.  In time they reached what resembled a wall of ancient stone and took equidistant positions along it while turning back towards the group on the earth far below.  The holy men waved back, as they faded away while the golden glow subsided.  One by one, the angels began to disappear within the clouds.  As the vision of heaven became obscured by white puffy clouds in the sky, the circle of blue light also dissipated from the ground surrounding the former site of the portal.  Mikolaj and Jakub rose from their knees and looked around the camp.  All traces of ghosts had disappeared, and the area felt like a great weight had been lifted. 

After some further words spoken in Polish between Father Aleksander and Starszy Kapral Szymon, the lead father walked over to Pudgy and Angeliki, while his two subordinate priests joined him.  The demigoddess smiled at the young men walking towards her, while she cradled Pudgy in her hands.  She began to rise from her knees and spoke in English.  “I healed him as best as I can, but there are limits to what I can do.  I think a good month’s rest is in order, with no more adventures.” She laughed softly, and noticed her words were being translated into polish by a nearby solider who was an interpreter.  The other soldiers all started to laugh, while their leader lit a cigarette and took a draw from it.  There was still one ghost Rabbi remaining, who was looking forlorn.

Rabbi Rudolf was still floating there, though his beam of light had greatly diminished.  The ghost holy man floated over to Angeliki and gave Pudgy a tired smile.  “Pudgy, I must go now.  I am sorry for all that I have done, to you, and your friends.  I do not expect for you to forgive me, please know I am sorry.”  The hedgehog wiggled his nose and looked up at him, watching the former Kaiser fading away.  Before Pudgy could speak, the former Kaiser had disappeared.  The little hedgehog whimpered and sighed sadly, “Pudgy wanna go home now.  Oh no, what happen to Pudgy plane?!?!”  Angeliki giggled, “I think it should be ok, let us go find it.  I am sure the soldiers will want to see it.”  The demigoddess winked at the Starszy Kapral, who nodded when he heard the translation.  She turned and started to walk down the road that led back to the center of the camp.

As Angeliki walked through the now silent prison camp, the snows continued to melt away.  To her amazement, wildflowers were starting to peek up through the formerly cursed earth.  The iron gates that had been locked open to allow visitors in, had been ripped off their hinges.  The soldiers turned their heads to look at the barracks.  The ones that still stood, had their doors ripped off as well.  There was a pile of doors laying in an empty spot between the former prison buildings.  Even though they had been open, their existence had trapped the ghosts within their confines.  Pudgy’s order for everyone to go home, had implications far beyond the camp.   In time, the little hedgehog would learn just how much of an impact his order had.  Crossing a set of train tracks, the group was on the main unloading area for the prison trains that once ran though the camp.   

Pudgy wiggled in his friend’s hands and pointed to a brick building with a red roof.  “Pudgy plane behind the building!”  As a solider translated to his counterparts, the group crossed a double set of train tracks, to mill about the building.  Angeliki turned the corner she found the tiny plane.  It had deep scratches, and gouges all over the fuselage, but seemed to be otherwise all right.    “Here is your plane Pudgy, do you have any fuel left?”  The hedgehog shook his head, “no, Pudgy use all fuel to get here.”  A younger solider ran around the corner and called out and pointed excitedly when he saw the tiny plane. As the superior officer rounded the corner, his eyes went wide.    As the older solider walked up, he knelt beside the plane, and hesitantly touched it.  When he realized it was in fact real, and noticed the tiny American flag painted on the tail, the older solider looked up at the hedgehog.  He took another draw from his cigarette.    

The young solider pointing was the translator, and he smiled at Angeliki and Pudgy.  The young solider was average height, weight, dressed in camouflage, with a black face mask on.  “Is this your plane Pudgy Hedgehog?”  Pudgy nodded, “yes Mister Solider.  Pudgy out of fuel, do you have any gasoline you could spare?”  Translation was begun, and then after the superior smiled and nodded, the message was relayed. “Yes, we can spare some fuel, this place should not take that much.  But where are you going to go to from here?”  Angeliki smiled while Pudgy bounced tiredly in her hands, “Pudgy gonna go home to Pennsylvania.  But first, Pudgy must go to Birmingham, in the United Kingdom.”   The solider nodded and relayed the message.  The other soldiers turned and looked at the plane, and then Pudgy.  “all on one tank of fuel, how efficient is this engine?”   The soldiers carefully picked up the plane and carried it over to where their vehicles were parked. 

Angeliki nodded while following the soldiers and carried Pudgy over to where the plane was soon resting.  The demigoddess was hugging her friend gently the entire time.  She did not say anything but could feel that the death magic had seeped deeply into her little friend.  In time, he would be able to pass it, but she was worried about its aftereffects.  Like the German soldiers, the Polish armed services had a terrible time trying to figure out how to fuel the tiny plane.  But this gave the men something to do, and some all-important time to examine the tiny plane.  To their bemusement, the tiny cockpit was designed around Pudgy, with critter sized controls and seat.  Many questions were asked, which Pudgy did his best to answer.  It would see that after the soldiers had arrived at Brezinka, that was when the European Union Aerial command forwarded the information about the hedgehog’s arrival.  So, while they had some information, they did not have a complete picture.  Angeliki was also interrogated as well, though her answers were evasive at best.  The interrogation completed, and after many attempts by cursing soldiers, the plane was refueled.

The one solider was smacked on the arm when Father Aleksander overheard the curse words.  Something was said in Polish, which drew a sheepish apology from the young solider.  No one needed any proof that the almighty was real and watching today, so everyone should be on their best behavior.  Angeliki hugged Pudgy a bit tighter, and then looked down at him.  “Pudgy, you did more than you realize here. In time you will understand what I mean, but for now I think it is best you go home.”  The little hedgehog whimpered, “will Pudgy see you again?”  The demigoddess smiled, “yes, you most certainly will.  Though not for a while, as my Mother was wanting to discuss a greater role for me in the overall picture.  I wonder if she wants to retire, and put me in charge?”  The demigoddess giggled and raised Pudgy so she could kiss him on the nose.  The hedgehog wiggled in her hands and smiled.  After another hug, she knelt and placed Pudgy onto the cobblestone road. 

The hedgehog scampered over to his plane and slid back the partially open canopy.  The Polish soldiers had figured out the German method, which was a coffee cup and straw, to fill the primary and external tanks.  While Pudgy pulled himself up into the plane, the critter bounced into his pilot seat.  Angeliki smiled and watched as the trio of catholic priests watching Pudgy in his little plane from the opposite side of the plane. One solider was carrying a red external fuel can back to their vehicle, to secure it on the back tailgate.  The soldiers watched as the little critter did his preflight checklist.  He acted as if it was just like a real human airplane and was getting ready for flight.  After several moments had passed, while the flaps were tested to confirm they still moved, Pudgy started to wave at everyone.  He even saluted the superior officers, who smiled back and waved.  To the assembled group’s amazement, the tiny plane’s engine cranked over, and the propellor started to spin.  Once the engine had warmed up, Pudgy released the tail wheel lock.  The little plane started to pull forward, as the canopy was rolled shut. 

Pudgy needed room to take off, so he taxied the plane behind the soldier’s vehicles, and then turned around in the wide area of the train unloading area.  Once the airplane was lined up correctly, the hedgehog pushed the throttle control lever to full.  The little engine roared, and the propeller sped to full revolution.  The plane started to speed along the ground, and quickly passed the soldiers who were waving.   Angeliki smiled as the tiny plane began to take off and ascend into the skies.  The train platform ran east to west through the camp, and Pudgy was heading west.  Thank goodness, he was flying in the right direction to go home.  While the plane disappeared, the demigoddess started to turn to walk away.  After she had taken a couple of steps, the translator solider called out, “Ma’am, you need to remain here.  Our leader has more questions… for….”  While a wink and smile, the demigoddess faded away.  The soldiers looked at each other, then at the priests. 

Father Aleksander looked at Jakub, “Jakub, where is the car?”  The young priest, “it is at Rabbi Franciszek’s house.  Oh no, what are we going to tell his daughter?”  The Starszy Kapral nodded, “We will tell her what happened.  In the meantime, I think it is best Kapral to take Jakub here to get the car.  Then all of us meet at the church if that is all right Father Aleksander?”  The older priest nodded, and the soliders started to head towards the vehicles parked on the train platform.  Once all men had entered the military vehicles, one by one the engines turned on.  The vehicles then backed up into position, then followed each other in a convoy back through the main gate of the prison camp.  Once the vehicles cleared the main gate of the prison camp, 4 went to the church, while one headed into town to the former Rabbi’s home.   The men were quiet, contemplating what had happened?  They were also wondering, just how the hedgehog was gong to fly from Poland to the United Kingdom on one tank of gas?

Many hours passed, and the tiny plane was increasing its distance from the prison camp.  Pudgy was thankful he could just sit and recover, with the only noise being that of the plane’s engine.  The little airplane was still performing very well, though the air leak was a bit stronger now inside the cockpit.  His cold weather gear was still insulating him as best as it could, but there were several rips and tears throughout his gear, which let in some of the cold.  The critter was continuing to use the Hecate’s talisman, which would extend the fuel his plane needed to fly.  With the coordinates for his friend’s Purple Lady’s house programmed into the GPS, the course was laid in to fly to the north west.  This meant he would fly through Poland along the Czechia border, and bypass the more mountainous areas of Germany. 

As his tired eyes started to flutter shut, Pudgy tried to stay awake.  When he fell asleep, the Talisman’s magic stopped working for some reason.  But the sun had gone down, and it was night out now.  The stars were shining in a clear sky, as a crescent moon floated silently above him. The controls were locked into place, and engine continued its soft rumble.  The little hedgehog could not help it, and he fell asleep.  The darkness surrounded him when he fell asleep, and the hedgehog was floating in a black void.  The Mazzikim’s red glowing eyes appeared, and demonic howls screeched in anger at him.  Pudgy woke up immediately screaming, “no do not hurt Pudgy!”  After many tense minutes had passed, where Pudgy tried to recover from his nightmare, he realizing he was still safe in his plane.  The nap had refreshed him slightly, and was awake once more, which resulted int the hedgehog settling down while the plane continued to fly. 

Unfortunately for the hedgehog, the period of wakefulness would only last for so long.  His body was involuntarily falling asleep, no matter how hard he tried to stay awake.  After the plane crossed the German border, he fell asleep again.  Horrific visions filled the critter’s mind, of the ghostly prisoners.  They were floating, staring at him with forlorn translucent eyes, reaching out their skeletal arms towards him.  Once again, the hedgehog woke up screaming, and whimpered in the plane.  The nightmares were continuing to prevent him from resting, but it allowed Pudgy to preserve his fuel by using the talisman.  Checking his gauges, everything was in order.  The GPS showed that he was flying over Dresden, then Leipzig, then Gottingen, and many more towns with long names and funny characters. 

Every couple of hours the same pattern occurred: sleep, screaming awake, and then checking the plane.  The hedgehog had been more deeply affected by this adventure than any other, and Pudgy made a mental note, that this would be his last adventure.  He wanted to stay home in his forest, play with his friends, and eat many good things with Cobalt while he hugged him.   The critter noticed that his GPS went wild once more, with maps disappearing ad reappearing suddenly.  After a couple minutes passed, the device resynchronized showing Pudgy he had crossed into the Netherlands.  He wiggled his nose, trying to think of things other than ghosts and demons.  Pleasant thoughts helped, but he could not keep the sleep away forever.  While the sleep started to spread throughout his body once more, his eyes fluttered shut.  Screams of people filled his plane, as they were gassed in the chambers.  Pudgy jolted awake once more, “Pudgy will never sleep again!”

To his relief, the radio started to crackle, “Pudgy Hedgehog, are you there?”  Pudgy nodded, and pushed the radio transmit button. “Yes, Pudgy is here.”  A male voice was talking, “this is EU Air command, I see you are heading westwards over Arnhem.  What is your destination?”  The hedgehog wiggled in his seat, “Pudgy was able to stop Kaiser, so heading home now.  But Pudgy must stop in Birmingham first, for refuel and sleep.”  The voice changed to another man, “please go into detail what happened since we last spoke.”  So, the little hedgehog started to relay his tale of everything that had happened.  It brought fresh memories back to the surface, causing his to whimper.  When his story had ended, he was just over the water of the English Channel.  The plane’s course was adjusted slightly, to continue his course of flight to the United Kingdom. 

The voices had grown silent during the detailed account of what had happened.  A shocked voice on the radio coughed, “well, that was quite a story.  We wish you a safe flight home.”  Pudgy nodded, “thank you Air Command, can you let the RAF know Pudgy is coming?”  The radio started to hiss, and then the GPS lost connection once more.  The plane was quiet, save for the rumble of the engines.  The external fuel tanks were all blinking red on his dashboard, showing they were empty.  The main fuel tank was three quarters full, so Pudgy hoped he would be able to get to Purple’s house on what fuel he had left.  As he continued to stay busy, checking things in the plane, an hour quickly passed by.  The darkened screen of the GPS started to resynchronize once more, with a map showing he was now flying over Colchester. 

His radio fired up once more with a familiar British voice.  “Pudgy Hedgehog, are you there?”  Pudgy responded, “Yes this is Pudgy, is this the RAF?”  The male voice laughed, “why yes, it is, and our counterparts in the EU radioed ahead you were coming back to our land.  Were you successful in your mission?”  The hedgehog smiled weakly while he wiggled his nose.  He relayed all the events in Belgium, Germany, and Poland that had happened.  Audible gasps could be heard over the radio at times, as the astonished soldiers were quickly writing down and filing reports.  The GPS map continued to update showing he passed over Cambridge, then Kettering, then Coventry, and soon he was back over Birmingham.  When his story finished, the RAF solider was replaced by another older voice.  “Pudgy, that was quite a story.  Where will you be heading next?”  The hedgehog was already descending in his plane, “Pudgy heading to Birmingham.  Pudgy need to land, go potty, find a biscuit or two, go sleep, and refuel plane.”

The older man laughed heartily, “I would say very much so, and get some tea while you are at it.  We are aware of your friend Sarah and will stop by tomorrow to inspect your plane.  RAF, out.”  The radio went silent once more, but the GPS was tracking nicely along.  The little plane was starting to skirt the tops of the trees, as he passed by new gleaming office buildings that reflected the morning sunrise.   Pudgy could see the art museum which he visited with Purple, and he flew over the grand plaza that stretched around it.  As the sights became more familiar, he saw the street where Purple lived appear on the map.  Continuing to descend, Pudgy pulled the landing gear control lever, and listened as the gear started to lower.  A large delivery truck was driving towards him, which meant he had to steer the plane to pass by its side.  As the tiny plane passed the truck’s driver side window, the astonished driver nearly ran into a parked car. 

The plane eased down and landed on the smooth road surface after a couple of bounces.  Purple Lady’s house appeared, with his friend outside walking with Eddie the dog back towards their house.  She turned and started to wave excitedly, while Eddie barked and wagged his tail.  However, as the plane passed by, both could see the gouges and scratches in the plane.  There were burn marks on the wings as well, which caused them to increase their pace.  The tiny plane pulled up into her driveway, up to where the car port was, and the propellor blade started to slow as the plane’s engine turned off.  Eddie ran up to the plane and barked happily and peeked into the canopy.  As Sarah reached the plane, she knelt beside it and hugged her dog.  The woman watched as the hedgehog slid back his canopy and looked up at her whimpering. 

“Pudgy!  You are hurt!”  Sarah said with a worried tone and started to push the plane into the car port which was under the front of her home.  After pulling rubber storage containers around, to hide the plane, she reached into the cockpit and withdrew the hedgehog into her hand.  She slid the canopy back into place, and then raised Pudgy upwards so she could look at him better.  The hedgehog was wearing a shredded outfit of padded cloth, that had rips and tears throughout.  The fabric was stained of blood, and the hedgehog’s quills were missing in spots.  He had deep gashes throughout his body and was much lighter than he was when he was last at her home.  She was deeply concerned, and started to quickly walk around her garage, and up the exterior steps to her side porch. 

Eddie ran along at her side, dragging his leash on the ground.  He did not bark, but was concerned too, as he could smell the blood.  After some expert juggling, she was able to open the door without dropping Pudgy or her keys.  After both her and Eddie entered, she bumped the door shut with her rear end.  The door clanged shut as it closed, while she walked towards her powder room.  Sarah sat Pudgy down on the sink, “Pudgy, what happened?”  The little critter whimpered, “Pudgy save day.”  The woman nodded, “I want to hear all about your adventure, but first we need to get you patched up.”  She had a rudimentary first aid kit under the sink, in a white metal box that hung underneath the sink.  After closing the toilet lit, she grabbed the kit and set it down on the lid.

The woman very carefully helped Pudgy get out of his cold weather gear.  He whimpered as the blood had dried and caused the fabric to stick to him.  Slowly and carefully, Sarah worked, until the hedgehog was out of his gear.  It was then when she could see the full extent of the hedgehog’s injuries.  Rows of quills were ripped out of his back, and the remaining quills were all gray or milky white.  His fur had been burned off, and what little remained seemed to be falling out.  The gashes were healing, but still did not look good.  She placed the rubber stopper in the sink and began to run warm water from the faucet.  After the sink was a couple of inches full, Sarah gently picked up and lowered her friend into the water. 

The little hedgehog whimpered as she touched him but was perking up as she gave him a bath.  Squirting a bit of liquid soap from a purple dispenser from the counter, she made soapy bubbles, and continued to clean him up.  After several minutes, he was all clean, and the water in the sink was very dirty.  She picked up Pudgy once more, setting him back on the counter, while she pulled the stopper and rinsed out the sink.  Still running the warm water, she picked up Pudgy and rinsed him off.  Setting him back down, the critter shivered on the counter, looking up at her.  Sighing to herself, “Pudgy, these adventures are getting too dangerous now.  Now stay still, I need to bandage you up.  This antiseptic is going to sting, I’m sorry.” 

While dabbing a cotton ball with stuff from a brown bottle that said peroxide, she moved towards the critter.  He started to whimper as she disinfected his wounds.  He was too tired to move and looked up at the woman while wiggling his nose.  After 5 cotton balls, she was done, and got out sticky bandages to cover over his wounds.  To protect his back, she started to wrap him in gauze.  After several passes, and a sticky pad, the hedgehog looked like a mummy.  Sarah giggled, “well you now look like a mummy, Pudgy.”  The woman laughed, while packing up the first aid kit.  She then picked up her friend and headed into her living room.  Reaching the couch after a couple of steps, she sat down.  “Now, tell me everything that happened.” 

The woman listened in sheer amazement at everything that happened.  Her kind expression changed to concern, then to horror, as Pudgy revealed he had indeed gone to Auschwitz.  As the story continued, Purple noticed that there was a BBC breaking news banner on the television.  She changed the channel, and the same banner was on, with a message saying the Queen would be speaking shortly.  “Pudgy, something is happening.”  Turning up the volume, a man in a gray suit coat was speaking. “This is Nigel Sainsbury of the BBC news desk.  We take you live to the palace.”  An older woman dressed in a regal looking dark blue dress was sitting on a throne.  She was wearing a golden crown, dotted with gems along its circumference.  “greetings, my good citizens, we have come before you to inform you of an occurrence of significance.”  Pudgy wiggled his nose, as he was sitting in Purple’s lap. “Is that the Queen?” He asked as he pointed to the television set. Sarah nodded, “yes, that is the Queen. I wonder what happened?”

The Queen narrated as the video changed to live images were displayed.  Golden orbs of light were floating from the ground and into a glowing sky above.  “What we are looking at, is what occurred yesterday in Auschwitz.  We are still investigating as to what has occurred, but a great release has occurred.  Trapped spirits within the infamous camp have been released.  This scene is occurring all over the eastern parts of Europe.”  The video changed with titles on the screen. “From Jasenovac in Croatia, to Maly Trostenets in Belarus.  From Rumbula in Latvia, to as far south as Thessaloniki in Greece.  All former ghettos and extermination camps from the former Nazi empire are affected.  Ghosts are being released by the thousands, heading into the skies above.  There are reports of the kingdom of heaven being seen.  Do not be alarmed, as our country appears to be unaffected by these events.  A conference has been called between the Vatican, as well as Jeruselem, to discuss these matters.  As we are informed of the outcome, we ill provide the necessary details. “

Sarah looked in amazement, and then down at Pudgy, “what did you do?”  Pudgy did not realize that when he said that everyone goes home, he had freed all the camps.  Rabbi Rudolf was also having a hand in this and was working very quickly.  The Germans had multiple camps throughout all of Europe, so his job was not over by a long shot.  Pudgy continued his story, of the events at the prison camp.  When Pudgy described the demon, the ghost rabbis, and the portal, Sarah’s eyes went wide.  The story finished, with Pudgy whimpering in her lap.  Gently she pulled him towards her and hugged her hedgehog friend.  The commentators on television spoke endlessly about the scenes unfolding on the television, and what the Queen meant.  Emergency meetings were being held in all the world’s religious capitals.  The pope called an immediate conference of the cardinals and bishops, while the Chief Rabbinate called a council of Rabbis.  It as the television changed to a new view of Auschwitz, both watched as the entire camp had been covered with wildflowers. 

A loud series of knocks broke the silence in the room, a man with a blue uniform hat was peeking through the glass squares at the top of Sarah’s door.  Setting Pudgy on the couch, the woman stood, and walked over.  She opened the door, and an out of breath RAF solider was standing in his blue unfirm.  He had a silver flecked beard, which Sarah recognized.   “Oh, hello Mister Davenport.  Pudgy, the RAF are here to see you.  Please come in, “The woman said and watched as the solider walked into her living room.  While she shut the door once more with a tap of her hips, Sarah passed behind Davenport and into her kitchen.  “Pudgy got here about half an hour ago.  I am going to put the kettle on.”  The solider sat in the chair opposite of the mummified hedgehog.

“Pudgy Hedgehog, you have been quite busy.  The RAF tower relayed what you said, but what is happening is more involved.  My superiors need to know a full accounting of what had happened when you left, please start over and tell me again.”  The tired hedgehog began to tell his tale of adventure once more.  While his friend Sarah made tea and a platter of biscuits, the grand story unfolded.  The woman returned to the couch and set down the metal tray on her tea table.  She served the officer first, then Pudgy, before herself.  When the story finished, Pudgy spoke of his return trip.  The constant nightmares, and his lack of sleep.  The soldier’s expression changed to a soft sadness, “aye lad, that is normal with any war.  It will pass in time, but sometimes a sedative can help.  I am unsure what strength to use for a hedgehog though.  Sarah, may I use your phone?” 

The woman nodded as she sipped her tea and pointed to the wall mounted phone in the kitchen.  The solider nodded, standing up and heading over to the kitchen.  He picked up the handset and dialed his number.  In a short time, he was filing his report.   After a few moments, the call ended, and the solider returned to the chair.  After he sat, he looked at Sarah. “Was Pudgy injured?”  The woman nodded, “severely.  I washed him and patched him up as best as I can.  But how do you bandage a hedgehog?  So, I turned him into a mummy.”  The humans laughed, while they watched Pudgy nibbling on a sweet biscuit.  The solider nodded, “well, that is for the best then.  My superiors are requesting Pudgy do not leave this home at least for a couple of days.  We will be in touch when he is cleared to leave.  For obvious reasons, do not relay what happened here, nor Pudgy’s adventure to anyone.”

Sarah nodded and pulled her curly red hair back to tie into a ponytail. “I am in total agreement.  Pudgy needs to rest and recover, he’s not allowed to leave until I say so!”  She giggled while she tapped her foot for effect.  Davenport laughed and tapped his foot too, “ok we agree then.  I will see myself out and thank you for the tea.”  The solider stood up and looked down at the hedgehog.  He was face first on the platter, having fallen asleep.  Before he could turn, the hedgehog woke up screaming.  “I think perhaps an aspirin diluted in water, and not the whole pill, may help him Sarah?”  The woman nodded and waved as the solider opened the door and exited her home.  The door swung shut once more, and latched shut.  The hedgehog started to nibble his biscuit again.  Sarah smiled softly while her phone started to buzz like crazy on her table.  Picking up her phone, she found a message from Samantha, asking where she was?  Looking at the clock, “oh crap, I’m late.  Pudgy, stay here and eat biscuits, I will be back soon.”    The woman quickly headed back into her one room adjoining the living room.  The hedgehog was too tired and hungry to notice and stayed at his place on the tea table.  Eddie the dog padded up and hopped onto the couch, turning around several times, to look at the television set and the hedgehog.  He watched over the little critter, who fell asleep again.  In a couple of minutes, the hedgehog jerked awake screaming.  Eddie was worried, what was going on with Pudgy?  He hoped he would be all right soon.  Like any good dog, he watched and when it was clear something was wrong, he hopped off and started barking at the door that led to the room where Sarah was.    In time, a concerned woman opened the door. “Eddie, I am almost done.  Please keep Pudgy company, he is having nightmares. But he is all right, I think.”  The dog barked again, and watched the door shut once more.  He trotted over to Pudgy, and then back up on the couch again.  Pudgy was safe, and patched up, and in time he would be able to rest.

By Cobalt

Cobalt is a normal guy that goes to work. Pudgy is his hedgehog friend who lives in a hobbit style home nearby, and goes on epic adventures. All Pudgy stories are copyrighted to Cobalt. Doomcock, Harvey Cthulhu, and Xanadoom is copyrighted to Overlord DVD.

One reply on “Land of Sorrow: Chapter 12: Ascension”

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