The Fifth Part

by Barbanne

I gazed up at the sheer cliffs in front of me.

They were awesome. Weird like some ancient, primaeval mountain, I fully expected to see pterodactyls come swooping down. Cynzia took my face in both hands and kissed me long and hard. Then she turned to Kerry and repeated the dose. Only more so. Damn it, the two of them were having a dry shag, of that I felt sure.

"Hey, Kerry." I whined.


Cynzia and her band of warriors rode away.

We were alone. Somewhere on this frighteningly forbidding mountain was the secret of the place of ascension and somewhere on this evil and creepy mountain were the Il Mostro. No-one amongst the Castrals had been able to tell us just who or what Il Mostro was. All of them agreed, however, that it, or they, were unspeakably evil and truly terrifying. So what, I'm not afraid of boogeymen.

"Hey, Barb," Kerry placed his hand on my shoulder and my heart missed maybe a half dozen beats and I had to cop a quick, surreptitious feel of my panties to make sure I hadn't wet myself.

"Don't do that," I said when my tummy realigned itself.

"You're not scared, babe?"

"Nah. Do I look scared? Nuthin' scares me."

"Funny then, you've gone white as a sheet, with just a touch of green."

"Me? You're talking about me?"

"Yeah, you."

"I'm scared shitless, Kerry mate, if you must know. In fact if you'll excuse me I gotta go and pee over behind those bushes." His laughter followed me into my humiliation as I squatted and piddled.

I came back hoicking my shift back into place and he said, "You're priceless, babe. Monsters, here we come."

I thumped him hard.


We walked around the edge of the cliffs looking for a way up or some other evidence of some means of accessing the fastness of this forbidding sentinel. Nothing seemed apparent. In fact the sheerness and solidity of the cliffs looked absolutely impenetrable. Then, about midday, Kerry said, "Look, up there, Barb."

I looked.

About six metres above the ground, almost concealed by scrubby foliage was a long slit of broken rock, a cave entrance that might or might not go somewhere.

"Worth a try," said Kerry.

We decided to eat something before attempting the climb to this fissure. As I munched on some of the food Cynzia had left with us, I looked at the cliff and then looked away trying not to think of my utter terror of heights.

After lunch, Kerry started to scale the cliff. He made it about three metres off of the ground and then returned.

"No handholds, Barb. None at all." Then he waved his hand, "See all of these vines around here?"

I looked. There was so much tangled greenery that I supposed there were vines. "If you say so."

"Well, if we plait a rope and snag it up there, you can shinny up, you weigh practically nothing, and then you can secure it and I can use it to climb up and join you."

"Bullshit to that."

"No climbies, no lovies."

I turned around and folded my arms like no way and thrust my ass out at him.

Two hours later we had woven a decent looking rope of about ten metres length. Lacking a grappling hook, we had weighted one end with a rock and a sturdy branch from a young sapling nearby. After three casts, Kerry got it to snag inside the cleft and despite his most energetic tugs it didn't give in any way.

"Ok, up you go."

"No way."

"Two choices babe. Go up, or stay here and I'll kill you."

When I was about half way up and puffing and panting like a grampus, he sang out to me, "Hey, Barb, you should see the view I'm getting from down here." I grabbed at the back of my shift thinking to protect my modesty (hah) and swung by one hand and forgot modesty and grabbed the rope vine with both hands and clambered on. Damn it, let him see all he wanted up my skirt. At last I was at the rock opening. It was about a metre wide at its widest and I scrabbled over the lip of the edge and sat down and blew. Inside it was cold, clammy, damp and gloomy. I heard Kerry calling my name and thought, stuff you mate. After a bit I looked around and found a rock outcrop I could tie the vine rope to and secured it and then went to the opening and looked down and reeled back dizzy. More cautiously I tried again and shouted down to him to come up. A few minutes later his head appeared and then all of him and then we were both inside the cave. We pulled the vine up after us.

We explored inside the cavern.

There was just enough light to see around us. Mostly it was rock walls and drippy damp and moss and shit like that. I groped my way to the rear, and then, there in the rock face, was a shiny flat surface that looked like stainless steel. It also felt like stainless steel and, when I studied it closer, was in fact stainless steel. It looked like a lift door. It was sure way more sophisticated than anything else I had seen since I fell into this time hole or whatever it was. Kerry was behind me and hadn't seen the door.

"Where do we go from herem Barb?" he asked.

"Fifth floor, ladies underwear, mens suits," I said.


I stepped aside so that he could see the door.

"Let's take the lift," I said.

"Well look at that!" he muttered.

There was a small button set into a metal plate beside the door and I leaned on it. Far off was the faint rumbling sound of machinery and seconds later the door slid to one side and light poured out of a cylindrical chamber that looked like an upmarket city lift.

"This is sort of weird," said Kerry.

"Going up," grinned I.

We got in. On one side of the lift was a row of buttons. One was glowing green. I guessed that was the level where we were. Below that was another button, above it were six more.

"Where to?" I asked.

"Take your pick," he said.

"Top floor," said I.

He pressed the button and the door slid shut, seamlessly and silently. Whoever had built this baby knew what they were doing.

The lift practically flew upwards. It stopped smoothly. The door opened onto pitch blackness. I peered into the dark. Nothing! Zilch! Grabbing Kerry's hand I started forward.

Without warning, they were there. Formless creatures, like wraiths. I had the impression of skeletal faces, eyeless sockets, rotting clothes, fetid breath. I saw white cadaverous figures, naked, ribs poking from the peeling flesh. I saw red eyed men and women, mouths opened, fangs visible, vampires! Every monstrous thing that haunted my nightmares was there. The scrabbling hands clasped at me, the bony fingers tugged at my shift. They pulled me in amongst them, the smell was indescribable and the sensation was unbelievable. They were all around me, all over me. I saw the vampiric fangs opened wide and rushing at my throat.

I screamed and then brain overload took effect and I crumpled down in a dead faint.


I woke lying in hospital.

It felt like hospital. Looked like hospital, smelt like hospital.

I was in a mostly white room, lying in a white sheeted bed. My clothes were gone and I knew I had been washed. I had a sort of short green nightie like garment on. I was staring at a white ceiling. I shut my eyes tight and then opened them but it didn't go away. I peered over the top of the bed sheet. Sitting in chairs watching me were two grey haired men dressed in clinical looking white smock suits. On the other side, in a green track suit, sat Kerry.

"I'm dead, right?" I said. "That goes without saying. So is this heaven or hell?"

The two grey haired guys smiled and Kerry laughed.

One of the grey haired guys spoke in English. "Wrong on all three, Barbara. First you are not dead, second this surely isn't heaven and thirdly, neither is it hell."

I closed my eyes and sagged back. "Ok, surprise me. Where have I ended up now?"

The grey haired guy who had spoken to me spoke again. "First, let me introduce myself. I am Doctor Steve Jobson and this," he indicated his companion, "is Doctor Joe Charles. And no, we aren't doctors of medicine, some very nice nurses got you into that bed, we are quantum physicists and we along with everyone else here are FAUST WIMPS."

"Faust wimps?" I asked weakly.

"Federation of Australian and US Taskforce for the Wormhole Investigation and Manipulation Project."

"Oh I see. Well that helps a lot." I closed my eyes and tried (not very hard) to look faint again.

"If I can explain."

I nodded and looked at Kerry. His attention was all on Doctor Jobson.

"The Federation is a joint Australian US effort to manipulate wormholes in the earth's quantum particle layers to expedite travel between different universe probabilities."

"Run that by me again," I said without opening my eyes.

"Well, depending on small events, chaos theory predicts different outcomes for all stages of evolution. For instance, where you have spent the last few weeks is an alternate evolutionary world which we have recently discovered, and where we have established this substation. We use this substation, and our main station back on earth in the year 2000, to facilitate transfer travel through the quantum wormholes."

My head was beginning to ache.

"So using this wormhole travel we can move back and forth between worlds and times?" asked Kerry.

"Not really between times, but yes, between worlds at whatever time they are presently existing as of now."

"What about the monsters that attacked me?" I said in a tiny voice.

"Mind artifacts, cyber generated. Very effective for controlling the local population. Any particular individual sees his or her own demons of the mind."

"Not real?" I asked.

"Only to you, Barbara."

"Can we go home now?" I asked.

"Back to where you came from? Not a very salubrious life surely. Besides I believe the police back there want very much to talk to you about a rather suspicious death in a Gent's toilet."

"Is this blackmail?"

"Well, you and Kerry have proved very adept at living in these other worlds and we are very keen to send explorers into worlds where a mediaeval situation exists, as well as one similar to Imperial Rome, and yet another much like Atlantis, a virtual water world."

"I'm getting a bad feeling about this."

He laughed.

"So how did we get into this weird world in the first place?" asked Kerry, "and why do the aboriginals consider the rocks where we came through a sacred place? And who was that guy Warrego we met back in Karpathee?"

"A lot of questions," said the Doctor. "The place where you came through has long been considered sacred by the aboriginal people, that's true. But that is purely coincidental. What took you two through was a stray misfire of ours when we were trying to access this world with some of our own people. People I have to admit, we haven't seen since. As for Warrego, he is one of our own people. When we realised we had sucked two bystanders in we sent him from here to direct you back this way. He has made many trips into the world out there and it is thanks to him that we have created the mythology that surrounds this place."

We looked at each other.

"Misfires?" I said. "Not seen since? And you want us to join this program?"

"Those incidents are very rare. Believe me, they are extremely low risk."

"I gotta lie down," I said.


I slept for a while my mind crammed with stuff. Later a nurse came in and told me I could get up. My fatigue that had caused my faint was cured thanks to resting and I was free to go to the living quarters. They gave me a green track suit like Kerry's, and despite the fact that it only fit where it hit, I felt decently dressed for the first time in a long while.

I was shown to a part of the complex (it was huge) where rooms for living were. Shortly after I arrived Kerry joined me and then the two Doctors came and showed us the wormhole transporters.

They were like chain mail versions of the Tardis, that phone box Doctor Who used to nip around in. You walked in, they set co-ordinates in sideways universes and bingo, off you went. They wanted to return us to their main station back on earth in the year 2000 so that we could be reassigned to a new otherworld. For me, it was that or back to where I came from to face a charge of murder and a return to prostitution. You'd think the decision was easy but I was so frightened of what I had been told that I was all for opting for gaol and the life of a harlot.


Kerry took me back to our room and took me to bed. I lay there looking at him.

"Anyway," I said, "what about you? What about your family, your friends, your wife?"

"Haven't got anyone worth worrying about. To tell the truth Barb, I came to that place with suicide in mind and then I saw you and had that stupid rush of blood and lost it and then, well you know the rest."

"What should I do?" I asked him.

"Stay with me, love me, and let's go adventuring. Hey, what have we got to lose?"

I gripped him hard and forced myself on him.


Still dressed in the green track suits we walked into the transporters. Everything glowed white and I heard a loud humming and I felt prickly warm and then it was like I lost consciousness for a second or two and then someone was opening the transporter and I said, "What happened?" and a blonde chick in a blue skin tight suit said, "Welcome to Earth Station One."


So here we are.

We have undergone a certain amount of training in the sort of conditions we might expect to encounter in other worlds and we have undergone physical training and weapons training. We have been instructed on what to look for and how to record it. I slept through most of the lectures and whinged through most of the PT.

At the moment though we have been told we go tomorrow.

All we are waiting on is our destination. Which of the other worlds they want us to go to.

I'm scared, no two ways about that. But I'm also excited. Really excited.

And when I'm excited I gotta relax and I relax best with sex.

"Hey Kerry...........................??"