The Kur Stone, Part 1 is the second chapter of Zak Saturday's Immortal Love Life. It was first published on January 2, 2016.
After talking to Sarah some more, I learned a few more things about her. She just got out of school for the summer, and her family is just as adventurous as my family was. Except her dad.
I wanted to talk to her some more, but then we heard a beeping sound.
It come from a device on Dad’s wrist.
“That’s from home,” he said.
“Somebody tripped the alarm system?” Mom asked.
“Cool,” I said. “A break-in.”
“No, don’t even think about it. You know the rule: any sign of a fight, you boys stay in the airship.”
So we headed home.
Once we got there, we weren’t really surprised to find that it was our enemy Van Rook, along with a new apprentice.
Mom and Dad shot grappling hooks onto the roof and swung into the house.
Then the fight started.
Dad kicked Van Rook’s new apprentice across the room as he swung in, then used his power glove against him.
Mom took on Van Rook with her fire sword.
It was so unfair that I couldn’t join the fight with my parents, and after a little while, they needed help.
Van Rook’s apprentice knocked Dad out with some concussion grenades.
Van Rook got Mom caught in a multivolo, and she fell to the ground, her sword falling out of her grip.
Van Rook’s apprentice was about to slice Dad with some kind of mini-power saw on his wrist, and my mom could only watch helplessly from her bonds.
I couldn’t stand here and just watch my parents be killed.
I had to help save them.
I looked at Fisk and Komodo, and we had a silent agreement.
We were about to move, but Sarah could tell what we were thinking and stopped us.
“Didn’t your parents tell you to stay in the airship?” she asked.
“Yes, but they need our help,” I said. “They’re getting creamed down there. Plus, you’ll learn that I don’t always follow my parents rules.”
“I believe you.” Sarah looked down at my helpless parents with concern. “They do need help. Go.”
I thought she was going to come along with us, but she stayed where she was standing.
So me, Fisk, and Komodo went into battle.
I found a grappling hook, shot it onto the roof, and swung myself into the house, while also kicking Van Rook’s sidekick into the wall, like Dad did before.
After I landed, I ran to help Mom and Dad, but just then I felt something hit me in the back, and I went flying.
I crashed against the wall. Hard.
I tried to get up, but I couldn’t.
My right arm felt broken.
Then Fiskerton and Komodo got hurt my Van Rook’s sidekick, too, being kicked and punched to the floor.
Man, this guy was good.
Then he took out his mini-power saw, and came toward me.
I thought this was the end.
But just then, Sarah came into the room with her sword in hand, and slashed the mini-power saw away from me.
She winced a little bit, but she ignored her injury.
She kicked Van Rook’s sidekick in the chest, knocking him to the ground, and stood on top of him.
I noticed Van Rook coming up from behind her.
“Sarah, look out!” I shouted.
Sarah jumped into the air and did a backflip.
Now she was behind Van Rook, and she slashed her sword at him.
Van Rook yelled in pain, and fell to his knees.
I saw blood dripping down his back.
Ouch. That’s gotta leave a mark.
“I’m not getting beaten by a kid,” Van Rook’s sidekick said while getting up from the floor.
“Don’t judge me just because I’m a kid,” Sarah said.
Then she slashed at him with her sword, but he dodged it.
He tried to grab Sarah, but she was fast.
She dodged him, then hit his mask with the hilt of her sword, knocking him unconscious.
Van Rook ran to his aid.
Sarah pointed her sword at him. “If you want to live, leave this house right now.”
Van Rook grunted angrily.
He crossed his right arm over his chest. There was a bight flash of light, and he and his apprentice was gone.
Sarah went over to my mom and cut the ropes from around her. Then she sheathed her sword and helped her up.
Mom went to help Dad, Fiskerton, and Komodo, and Sarah came to help me.
“Zak, are you ok?” she asked.
“Yeah, I’m ok,” I said.
Sarah looked at my arm. It hurt when she touched it.
“Your arm looks pretty bad,” she said, which was kind of obvious. “I’ve got something that can help.”
She grabbed her scabbard and pressed a button on the side of it.
A small panel slide aside, revealing a little opening with something white slightly sticking out of it.
Sarah grabbed the white thing, which happened to be a wipe and a cloth, and bandaged my arm.
“That should heal quickly,” Sarah said.
“Thanks,” I said. “How were you able to fight those guys? And how does your scabbard practically have its own first-aid kit?”
“I’ll tell you later,” she said.
She grabbed my hand and helped me up.
Then she turned to the rest of my family. “Are all of you guys ok?”
“We’re fine,” Mom said. “Thank you for saving us.”
“You’re welcome. You guys helped me out, so I should return the favor.”
My parents smiled. Then they looked at me, and they frowned, looking mad. Great.
“What?” I said. “You knew I wasn’t going to stay in the airship.”
We started to clean up everything that Van Rook and his apprentice destroyed in our house, which was a lot.
“So any idea what Van Rook and his new side kick were after?” I asked. “Pretty bold to attack us at home, don’t you think? Gotta be something big.”
“Don’t try to change the subject,” Mom said. “You’re still in trouble here.”
“I’m just trying to be part of the team.”
“You’re not our partner, Zak. You’re our son. And I don’t think bringing you into a fist fight with mercenaries is gonna win us any Parent of the Year awards.”
“Dad, come on,” I said. “Talk to her. You’re the one who told me to test my abilities.”
“Well, that’s true,” he admitted.
Mom turned around and glared at him.
“But I’m one-hundred-percent with your mother on this one.”
We heard Sarah laugh, and we turned to look at her.
She blushed and stopped laughing. Then turned away.
“There’s a clear line between adventure and danger,” Dad continued, “and we’re trying to keep you on the safe side of that line.”
“Look, I’m not saying I wanna go looking for trouble,” I said. “I just think I’m ready to do what you guys do. You know, fight the bad guys, save the world.”
“You know you’re eleven,” Mom said incredulously.
Then we heard a beeping sound from another room.
We were getting a video call.
“We’ll talk later,” Dad said, and he went to answer the call.
But Mom was confused. “Wha-wait. Talk about what? Talk about—he’s eleven!”
We all went to see who was calling.
“Doc, answer,” Dad said.
The screen showed a woman. It was Dr. Miranda Grey.
“Oh, thank heaven you’re all ok,” she said.
“Miranda, what happened?” Mom asked her.
“Argost’s beastly student, that’s what. Paid me a visit.”
“Are you all right?” Dad asked.
“No, I’m not all right. He took my piece of the stone.”
I narrowed my eyes.
“Stone?” I asked, looking at Fisk.
He shook his head, notifying that he didn’t know either.
“Van Rook,” Mom said.
“That must have been what he came for,” Dad said.
“You too?” Dr. Grey asked. “Did he get anything?”
“No, no, no. Ours is all right,” Mom said. “But Henry?”
“I’ve been trying to reach him. Nothing.”
“Let me pull up satellite coverage on his observatory,” Dad said, pushing some buttons on the controller on his wrist.
Dr. Grey’s video call on the screen moved to the left side of it, and a screen popped up with a list of recordings on the right, all of them episodes of one show.
“Zak,” Dad said, not sounding happy. “Why do we have nineteen recorded episodes V.V. Argost’s Weird World?”
“Uh, research?” I said sheepishly. “Know thy enemy?”
I picked up a remote and played one of the episodes.
It showed what looked like a prison under a volcano.
Argost’s minion Munya was holding a platter with meat on it, a few knives struck into some, and a whip lying next to them.
In the prison cells on his right, there were a lot of monsters sticking their claws and tentacles out to try and get a piece of meat.
“Forgive me, children,” Argost’s voice said in the background. “My little pets get so excited when I have visitors here at Weird World.”
Argost appeared on the screen, walked up to Munya, grabbed the whip from the platter, and whipped it towards one of the cells.
Mom grabbed the remote from me and turned it off.
“Uh-huh,” she said. “It’s saved under favorites.”
I turned from her and crossed my arms over my chest. “Well, maybe research is my favorite.”
Sarah laughed as if this was all funny to her.
I turned and glared at her.
She stopped laughing, but kept her smile on her face.
She had a pretty smile. So pretty that I knew I couldn’t stay mad at her for laughing at me.
Dad removed the playlist screen.
He pressed a few buttons on a controller on his wrist, and a holographic image of a globe appeared.
“No satellites in the area right now,” Dad confirmed.
The holographic image disappeared.
“We’ll check it out in person, Miranda,” Mom said.
“Be careful,” she replied.
“Hey, it’s us,” I said.
“You’re taking him along with you?” Dr. Grey asked.
“No,” Mom said. “I did not say—”
I interrupted by pressing a button to my left and ended the video call.
“Sorry, Dr. Grey, gotta go,” I said.
I ran to the door, going under Fisk while doing so. “Come on, people. Action time.”
“Action time,” Fisk agreed.
We all went to the airship, got aboard, and are on our way to Dr. Cheveyo’s laboratory.
“You guys are doctors?” Sarah asked.
“Scientists,” Mom corrected.
Sarah’s eyes widened. She looked nervous. “Scientists?”
“Yes. Is something wrong?”
“Oh. Um, no. Nothing’s wrong.”
That was an obvious lie, but no one questioned her more about it.
Sarah sat down next to me for the entire flight.
Once we got to the laboratory, Dad landed the airship, and we all got out.
Dr. Cheveyo was waiting for us.
I looked around.
The whole place was in rubble. There were some spots still smoldering from being set on fire.
“Nasty,” I said.
“Sorry I didn’t tidy up,” Dr. Cheveyo said. “Didn’t know I’d be having company.”
“Looks like you got the worst of it,” Dad said. “Who was it?”
I had picked up a piece of debris and was examining it, but my eyes widened when I heard that.
“Argost was here?” I asked.
“Yes, and he blew up my lab,” Dr. Cheveyo said. “How cool for me.”
“Right. Bad guy . . . I hear he puts on a great new TV show though.”
“Apparently, my son has been doing a lot of Weird World . . . research,” Dad said.
“Well, if your research finds away to get my stone piece back from Argost,” Dr. Cheveyo said.
“He got it?” Mom asked.
“Then it’s starting again,” Dad said.
I was getting crazy, and a little annoyed.
I really wanted to know what the hell they were talking about.
“Ok, guys, seriously, with the mystery,” I said. “Do I get to know what’s going on here? What’s starting again? What stone pieces?”
Mom and Dad looked at each other, and seemed to come to some kind of silent agreement.
“The Kur Stone,” Mom explained. “Key to finding the ancient Sumerian beast called Kur. According to the legend, whoever controls the cryptid Kur, controls the world. Ultimate, limitless power. Kur can give it to you, and only the stone can lead you to Kur.”
“Your mother and I lead the team that discovered the stone,” Dad said. “At first, we didn’t even know what we had. But somebody else did.”
“Argost disguised himself as a member of our crew, and by the time we found out, he was already gone, with the Kur Stone.”
“The Secret Scientists tracked him down to Weird World. We went in with a team of fifty. By the time we left that house of horrors, there were only seven of us.”
“Argost escaped. But we got the stone. And now that we knew what it was, we decided this was one secret that needed to stay secret. Even from ourselves.”
“We split it into three pieces, each left in the care of a different secret scientist. As long as we kept them apart, the key to finding Kur was safe.”
“But you didn’t keep them apart,” I said. “Argost just got two of the pieces, right? And you guys have the only one that’s left?”
“Then why are we sitting around here? We have to get back home before Argost does.”
“Zak. Zak, relax. Our piece isn’t at home,” Mom said. “We found a hiding place in the Amazon River Basin years ago.”
“What?” Dr. Cheveyo asked, sounding surprised. “You’ve left it unguarded all these years?”
“Give us some credit, Henry. I did not say it was unguarded.”
“No, he’s right, Mom,” I said. “Argost knew where to find two of the pieces. How do you know he didn’t already find the third? Why did Dad build the superfast airship if we’re not going to use it? We should go now! Back me up, Fisk.”
I looked at him for support.
He seemed too confused to do so.
“Zak, even if Argost knew where to look,” Dad started, but Dr. Cheveyo interrupted.
“No,” he said. “We have to go get it, find some other way of keeping it safe.”
“It is safe,” Mom assured him. “And I really don’t think you’re in the best shape for a trip to Mannose, Henry.”
“This isn’t just your decision. This whole world is effected by—”
“Komodo!” I called.
He had been chasing some kind of beetle, following it onto a rock right next to Dr. Cheveyo. The beetle flew towards him, and Komodo jumped on him, knocking him to the ground.
“No,” I said. “Bad dragon.”
“Come here, Komodo,” Sarah said.
Surprisingly, Komodo got off Dr. Cheveyo and went to her.
She started to rub his head.
I looked down at Dr. Cheveyo, still lying on his stomach, and noticed some kind of bug on the back of his neck.
“Uh, Mom?” I asked, pointing at it. “What’s . . . uh—”
“What is that?” Sarah asked, finishing my question.
“It’s a neural parasite,” Mom said.
“It feeds on impulses from the nervous system,” Dad explained. “Converting them to radiant energy waves. Everything Henry sees and hears is being broadcast to anyone who knows how to tune in. He’s listening right now, isn’t he, Henry? Argost.”
He lifted himself to his knees. “I—I’m sorry.”
“He heard everything,” Mom said.
“I just couldn’t fight him again. I’m sorry. I—I’m sorry I can’t—”
He screamed in pain.
“Henry!” Dad called.
Suddenly, Dr. Cheveyo stood up. He arched his back, and kind of crinkled his hands.
“Greetings and bienvenue, Saturdays,” he said, but it wasn’t his voice.
He laughed his evil laugh.
My eyes widened.
“Tha—that’s . . .” I started, but couldn’t finished.
“No. No, this is impossible,” Mom insisted. “The parasite doesn’t transmit both ways.”
“Impossible?” Argost said. “Only one with a tragic lack of imagination would use such a vulgar word. We deal with cryptids, my dear. We live in the world of impossible.”
“Where are you, Argost?” Dad asked.
“Eleven years you’ve kept my prize from me,” he said. “Eleven years of tracking down each of you miserable so called scientists, and pieces of the Kur Stone. Eleven years of planning this operation to perfection.”
“Yeah, I wouldn’t call two of three pieces ‘perfection’,” Mom said.
“We’ll see about that in Mannose, won’t we?”
He was about to attack Argost, but I stopped him.
“Fisk, no,” I said. “Dr. Cheveyo’s still in there somewhere. We can’t hurt him.”
“Sweet, little, boy,” Argost said. “I’ve waited eleven years for this. What makes you think I’d let anyone else do the hurting?”
The bug that Komodo continued chasing suddenly opened its rear end and sprayed a lot of green smoke around all of us.
“The Al-Kaseem Firecracker Beetle,” Argost explained. “Nature gave it a highly-flammable repensive spray.”
Suddenly, more of those beetles appeared and began to spray us more.
“All to activate it,” Argost continued, “is a spark.”
He kicked a piece of wood that flew over our heads and hit a rock behind us. I saw one spark.
“Heads up!” I shouted.
There was a huge explosion all around us.
The blast blew Dr. Cheveyo backward.
He hit a boulder, and fell to the ground unconscious.
The beetles came toward us.
We fought them all away, Fisk picking them up and kicking them away; Komodo using his tail to swipe them; Dad using his power glove to freeze them; Mom using her fire sword; and Sarah using her regular sword.
Dad went to help Dr. Cheveyo up from the ground.
He was rubbing his head.
“No,” he said in his own voice. “He promised he wouldn’t hurt you.”
“And you believed him?” Sarah asked incredulously.
All of the beetles gathered around, fusing together into one huge ball about fifty feet tall.
It rolled toward us.
“Run,” Dad said.
But Dr. Cheveyo ran toward the ball to intercept it.
He picked up a big plank of metal and prepared to use it to block the firecracker beetles’ ball.
“Go,” he said. “You have to stop Argost.”
The beetles ball hit the metal, and there was another huge explosion, even bigger than the one before.
It knocked us all over the edge, and we were thousands of feet above the ground below.
An idea came to mind.
I grabbed some rope from my pocket.
“Here’s the plan,” I shouted. “I’ll tie the tether line. We’ve got one chance to get this right . . .”
Suddenly, I landed on something hard.
I was able to sit up, and found that I was flying on top of a red dragon with a fire burning on the tip of its tail.
Where did it come from?
Then I realized that I wasn’t the only one riding it.
Sarah was sitting near the front of the dragon, holding on to a collar that it had on its neck, and she seemed to be guiding it.
The dragon grabbed Komodo with its claws.
I noticed Mom and Dad riding on another red-and-white, I guess, dragon too, even though it didn’t quite look like one.
It grabbed Fiskerton by its claws too.
What were they?
They flew us back to the top, and we landed back on the ground.
Sarah had two red-and-white balls in her hand.
Did she have these with her the whole time?
“Thank you two for helping us,” she said to the dragons. “Return.”
All of a sudden, the dragons glowed red and were virtually transported into one ball. The balls shrunk to the size of nuts, and Sarah put them in her pocket.
“What were those?” I asked. “And how did you do that?”
“You don’t know Pokémon?” Sarah asked, looking confused.
“Never mind. I’ll explain later.”
I didn’t want to wait until later, but I didn’t really have a choice. We were in a hurry.
We found Dr. Cheveyo passed out, so we picked him up, and we all went to the airship.
We took Dr. Cheveyo to another secret scientist, Dr. Odele, and we were currently talking to him on the video phone.
“How is he, Odele,” Dad asked him.
“Henry took the worst of that blast,” he said. “But he’ll be ok. Argost must be on his way to Mannose already.”
“He can’t be allowed to get that last piece of the Kur Stone.”
“It’s going to be dangerous. Why don’t you leave Zak with me until you get back?”
I didn’t like to hear that.
“Wait,” I said in disbelief. “What? We get the biggest mission of my life, and you’re leaving me with Odele?”
“Zak—” Dad started, but I interrupted.
“Is this still about the Congolese Giant Spider Stampede?” I asked. “I told you that was an accident. Fiskerton dared me to throw a rock at the web.”
Fisk protested about that: What? No, I didn’t!
He crossed his arms over his chest.
Sarah laughed. “What?”
I ignored them.
“Come on,” I said. “What was I supposed to—”
“Zak,” Dad interrupted. “You’re coming.”
Mom and I stared at him. “Wait. Really?”
“I don’t like the idea either, Drew,” he said. “But we might need him.”
“No, no,” Mom argued. “I’ll handle Argost myself if I have to.”
“It’s not Argost I’m worried about.”
Mom seemed to understand.
I looked back and forth between them, but I couldn’t understand.
“Ok,” I said. “Whatever’s going on, I’m sounding really important in it. Tell me more.”
We went to the back of the airship, and Dad showed me a holographic image of Brazil.
“Mannose, Brazil,” Dad said. “The heart of the Amazon Rain Forest. The last Kur Stone piece is buried here.”
“It’s a watering hole for the Tapire-laura,” Mom explained. “One of the most dangerous cryptids in South America. Amphibious, predatory, fearless. They are why we chose this hiding spot. Nature’s security system.”
“We watched that river bank for weeks, just to get a safe five minute window to burry the stone. If we can’t stop Argost before he gets there, we’ll need to hold off those cryptids long enough to retrieve the stone piece.”
“You need my powers.” I thought about it for a moment. “Yeah. I can do that.”
And me? Fisk asked.
“Don’t worry about it, Fisk,” I assured him. “I’m sure you’re important in this plan too.”
Mom looked at Dad.
“Ab-so-lutely,” she said, though she didn’t sound sure with that answer.
But it was enough to convince Fisk and he took it as a yes.
I did too.
Every once in a while, I'm going to do these quizzes at the end of a chapter for my readers to guess who or what something is. Here's the quiz for this chapter:
Sarah summoned two of her Pokémon to save herself and the Saturdays from falling of the cliff. What were those two Pokémon?
You guys can guess as many times as you want, and I'll give you the answer at the end of the next chapter.
Please review here.