S I X T Y - O N E



The White Stone

After Quinn the Bluebird (continuing lame in one foot) recovers from being thrown into the Kolumbia gorge by fanatic Sealtown clerics, he decides his spirit-journey would not be complete unless he climbs the holy Shouting Mountain. Everything else in the Kolumbian Empire has failed to help him in his long, difficult quest, so this is the last hope he has that the world's broken hoop will be mended. Will the sick, perishing world ever find the healing it must have to survive, or will he die still looking here and there and everywhere?

Though Sealtown's elevation of 6,000 feet gives him a headstart, along with his foot paining him, he is not used to the rapidly thinning air, and he doesn't get very far up when night closes in. Fortunately, there is Sister Moon to light his way.

Quinn is encouraged on his spirit-climb when the cloud warrior appears, lit by northern lights.

Coming to warm volcanic rocks that ward off the cold, Quinn pulls his body blanket around him and sleeps in a cleft. The whole next day, starting as soon as it is light, he does nothing but climb.

It grows late in the day when Quinn finally climbs up to impassable cliffs and no way across them except on sheer ice.

Quinn, crawling into a crevice for shelter, finds it is an opening to a honeycomb of vast caves and caverns kept free of ice by warm air from the volcanic fires beneath the mountain.


Quinn meets the mountain cave tribe, but cannot get to them across the cave lake, so he decides to continue on his journey.

Unexpectedly, he comes across a lone cave tribesman, who is just as surprised to see someone like Quinn with his five-starred head. As any Shos-Shone will do, Quinn uses sign language to speak words of greeting to the alarmed man, as well as ask him if he will kindly guide him to his brothers and sisters in the tribe he had seen earlier on the opposite side of the lake, so that he might rest on his journey to the top of Shouting Mountain.

Quinn is welcomed by the man's tribe, after they learn that Quinn is Shos-Shone, and he is given a dry, warm place to rest, where he promptly falls down, exhausted from his long climb, on a bedroll of dry rushes and drifts quickly off to sleep.

When he awakes, he is taken to meet an important tribal leader, a woman without hands (chopped off for stealing a cluster of grapes when she was a girl serving as a maid to a rich man in Sealtown.

She tells him, via his own language, that she has heard of his healings, as well as the cruel thing the Kolumbians did to him, and she wants to help him, since he has already healed some of her people living outside the mountain. But why has he come to the lodges of the tribes of mountain people? she asks. This is the only safe place for tribal people, she adds. Is he intending to take his Shos-Shone people away from the Mountain?

No, he says. He is not going to lead anyone into danger. He tells her he is searching for the Creator, the One he believes is seated on the top of the Shouting Mountain. The whole world is sick and dying, poisoned by the flying serpents that once flew all over the earth, striking all the big villages that once held many people, he explains further, as she nods in agreement, lifting her stumps. He has been gifted with powers to heal (and no man has greater powers than his), but they are not enough to heal the whole world. He could use them to destroy the whole world if he wanted, but he could not use them to make a whole new man without death and dying in his limbs. That is the medicine of the Creator alone. So he has come all this way from his own village far to the south, just to learn from the One he has heard lives on the highest rocks of the earth--those that crown Shouting Mountain, the holy place of the Ancients.

The wise woman replies that she has never been to the crown of the mountain. No one of the Mountain's confederated tribes has yet dared to try it. It cannot be done by climbing the mountain's skin, she added. There is nothing for a man to breathe--the birds themselves die and fall to the ground if they venture into those terrible heights. But there is a way--the mountain itself has provided it, leading up through the heart of the mountain--the paths of God's breath, they call them, blasted long, long ago by His mighty nostrils. They are full of good air to breathe. Yet no one has gone up them, even though they are the ways to the summit. Will you still be going since you must go alone? she asks. Quinn nods. She turns away to disguise her sadness for his soon death, and a man-servant close to her beckons for him to follow, and leads him to the path of God's breath that they hope will lead him to the top and not off into some tangle of tunnels leading to places he will never find his way out of.

Quinn enters a vent created by superheated gas and steam long ago. It blew a hole all the way to the top, and there are hundreds of such vents riddling the mountain, though this one is the largest and, hopefully, will lead him to the mountain crest.

Quinn has not yet reached the top when he encounters a large lake. The mountain woman has already told him he would find such a lake, but there would be a canoe there. Where exactly? He doesn't have to look around, for it is left for anyone who to use at the terminus of the lake where the excess flows through cracks and becomes a thousand thousand springs and streams that, joined by others running down from the skin of the mountain, water the whole kingdom of Kolumbia. That is exactly where the vent brings him. He will have to sail to the other side of the lake to reach the remaining section of the vent.

One cavern opens on another. Quinn sails a glowing necklace of lakes lit by blue and green algae phosphorescence on the overhead rocks of the caverns:

Quinn reaches what he thinks should be the opposite section of the steam vent, but discovers it is underwater, for the level of the lakes has risen. How is he going to find the entrance by diving for it, and then find his way up it without drowning? Perhaps the whole vent is flooded or blocked with rocks, for all he knows. He realizes he will have to go back and find another way up the mountain. Before he can begin his return journey the caverns shake and rocks rain down--a dread sign that Shouting Mountain, long asleep, has awakened at last and is going to shout into the sky with fire and melting rocks.

There is a roaring sound in the distance, and then Quinn sees the lakes foam and leap, as a great wave races across them, all the waters gathered together and rushing toward the vent that leads downward.

Quinn makes a mad dash to the shore and scrambles out onto the rocks just as the monster wave sweeps by the shore. His boat vanishes, and as he covers his head with his hands against the falling rocks the lakes themselves vanish before his eyes--cascading straight down the steam vent as he watches horrified, realizing that everyone below is doomed. Even Sealtown will not escape as the waters shoot out of the mountain and leap without any warning upon everything below.

Only minutes before a high-speed lahar erupts from the mountainside overhanging the Kolumbian capital of Sealtown, the Sultan's golden-domed, thousand-roomed palace appears splendid and unshakable as ever beside the slums and warrens that make up most of the city.

Feeling the agony of the world as never before, Quinn staggers into the vent and has only taken a few despairing steps when he is stopped by the appearance of a giant hoop hanging in midair. What sacred hoop could it be? His tribe's? No, this has two feathers, and his tribe has six, for the six winds of the southern plains. The world's? As if in response to his question, the twin feathers begin to wave back and forth on the great hoop. Then the Hoop of the World begins to withdraw from him, forcing him to follow or he will lose sight of it. He has not gone far when a thought comes to him, "Star Boy, your pilgrimage is soon ending. Those who seek Me will find Me."

Strengthened by the thought when he most badly needed strength, almost blinded by his tears, Quinn continues on after the Hoop, as it climbs higher and higher in the steam vent. Finally, the Hoops stops, just where Quinn faces two impossible barriers, a wide, deep lake, and a sheer cliff hundreds of feet high.

Exhausted to the marrow of his bones, his lame foot throbbing, Quinn is about sink down to sleep when he sees the Hoop is changing size. Enlarging, it grows big enough for him to step into it, which it seems to want him to do as it comes close to him. Too tired to give it a thought as to what might happen, he pulls himself up, and the Hoop glides up and over the big lake, rising as it flies to meet the cliff. In a few more moments, the Hoop passed over the cliff and heads to the opening of the vent, where the open sky and the stars of the Great Hunter greet him.

Once on the summit, like Moshe on Holy Horeb, he is in the presence of Yeshua and cannot be touched or overcome by anything. No air to breathe? Bitter cold? Nothing can harm him. He is in Yeshua's hand. Quinn kneels down before Yeshua. "You are Lord," Quinn whispered. "I lay everything I am, everything I have, at your feet. Do what you want with me!"

Yeshua's love, in response to Quinn's surrender, floods the Bluebird from head to foot. "You are my great champion R," he said to Quinn. "You have done honor to My Name already, and I have put My healing power in your hands. Use this power in my Name when you go back to the world below!"

Then Yeshua handed Quinn a ring with a stone that glowed pure and brilliantly white, but as Quinn took it from Yeshua's fingers, a pattern appeared, and it glowed blue around the edges. Never had such a stone existed before, and no one else would receive one like it. It was the White Stone, given to every one of Yeshua's true followers! Quinn received this knowledge of it when he slipped it on.

His own White Stone, which had a new, secret name from Yeshua inscribed on it that only his eyes could see! Quinn could not contain the joy he felt. He wanted to share his joy immediately with the entire world. How the world needed joy, hope, and healing! Those three things Quinn knew Yeshua had given to him, not to keep for himself, but to give to everyone. But first he is given a tour of Yeshua's creation. He climbs into Yeshua's hand, which becomes his starship.

These wonders and countless others--it was all indescribable. And Quinn realized that they were yet few compared to all those that Yeshua had created, and it would take an eternity to see them all, if ever.

All these wonders were made by Yeshua, and were founded in Wisdom, Quinn realized. But how can there be so much suffering and death--and a flood that sweeps sway all life before it--if Yeshua has founded the world on wisdom?

In case Quinn the Bluebird has not fully understood, since he has spent his whole life seeking this wisdom, Yeshua steps back a bit. Quinn Ceylon--Starboy, Bluebird, and Pilgrim--sees that Yeshua the Creator of the wide-ranging sky-lodges of the stars also has the whole world, though it appears to be mortally sick and dying, in His hand:

Seeing this, Quinn the "R" of the Rosebud Champions still did not understand. Yet he knew one thing. "Where can I go," Quinn thought, "and He is not walking there with me?" Even the Sacred Hoop that led him and carried him over impossible barriers--that was Yeshua too! Yeshua had come for the healing of the world, and He alone would mend the World's Hoop. At last, his long spirit-journey was over, and the key to the solution of the great sand painting game was in his hand. He saw that that Yeshua contained everything he and the world would ever need. Yeshua would heal the world. But how would he? Yet he knew the One who could hold the world in his hand could also find the right medicine.

As for himself, he would do all he could to help the many hurt by Shouting Mountain's floodwaters, and after that he would go home to his people and his village, find his flute, and play a song to his father's spirit. He could go home to his people.

And he would chant an old farewell song chanted by sons for lost fathers who did not return from hunting in the hills or fishing in the sea...

Here I am, my father!

Your son has returned home and will light your medicine pipe.

And I will make your bed blankets warm with my singing--

so you will not lie cold and alone somewhere in the dark.

Come in from the hills, come in from the sea,

and lie still, lie still, and be warm, and I will take your hands in my hands.

When Quinn stepped forth from a fumerol--the same vent that has wreaked destruction on Sealtown--he faced a crowd of confederated tribes--and the woman with no hands!"

"Yeshua the Creator's Son warned us all, and we got away from the waters in time," they explained to him. "But Sealtown would not listen to us and is gone--and there are many hurt people, waiting for you to come. They have no hope--and we do not have the medicine they need."

Immediately, Quinn felt this was his first moment of real life--he had-- in a twinkling of an eye--been born again as a new man!

He was running! His lameness was healed, even as he ran toward the ruins of the city and the people who needed him. And the medicine Yeshua needed to heal the world? Quinn, as he reached out to the wounded, the suffering, even the dying--found Yeshua's medicine had been put in his hands--and this was so, because now all were healed.

As he reached out amidst the tumbled ruins of the formerly splendid city, touching and healing every one who pressed toward him, he recognized the grand official holding his young son, and the fish-monger, and even his sad-hearted wife--they had been spared! And he recognized even many of his captors and and persecutors--and forgave and healed them all too, in Yeshua's name, as they wept and cried to him.

Many other things Quinn the Bluebird, Pilgrim, and Starboy did that day in Sealtown, but if they were all written, I suppose the world would not contain all the scrolls telling of his healings.

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