Call of the Dragon
by Zaxxon
Part 1

[Kwai Chang Caine's Apartment:
Monday, Morning]

     "You are troubled Kwai Chang Caine," Lo Si said.
     "I am not ... troubled, Master," Caine replied, "I am ... disturbed."
     The Ancient continued watering the plants on his side of Caine's 
     Caine knew that Lo Si, the Ancient, wanted to help but he did not 
know how to proceed. Caine sighed and said, "While mediating this morning 
I felt a ... presence. It disturbed me greatly."
     Lo Si waited patiently for Caine to continue.
     "I could only feel it for a moment. The feeling was ... evil.
Ancient, powerful and yet, I could not find the direction of this
evil. Nor could I find it again when I looked for it," Caine said.
     "Interesting," Lo Si said. "Perhaps if we linked our chi together
we can expand your search."
     "Yes, that is a good idea," Caine said.
     Together the two men moved into the mediation room, sat down, and 
linked their chi together and searched.
     "Show me what you saw Kwai Chang Caine," the Ancient said and Caine
did. "Let us look together."
     Time passed and both men were exhausted. Their search was
fruitless. Caine sighed and said, "it is as before. I saw but a sliver
and now we can not find it."
     "This is disturbing," Lo Si said. He thought for a moment,
recalling what Caine had shown him. "we must go to Shambalha. Perhaps
with the others we can find and confront this threat."
     "But ... " Kwai Chang Caine began for he felt that was a bit excessive 
of the Ancient to a possible evil that he could only feel for a moment. 
     "What affects one, affects all," Lo Si stated.
     Caine felt a twinge of guilt. He knew that Lo Si was right. He
forgotten that one Shambalha Master is a part of the combined whole.
A Shambalha Master was more than an individual. He was one with other
Shambalha Masters. He shared their strength, their knowledge, and their
very life forces. No Master was ever alone.  Caine had alway thought of 
himself as a Shaolin Priest, a Master of Way, true, but a Priest none 
the else. Now he realized he was beginning again at as a pupil, in the 
ways of Shambalha.
     After the Ancient created the portal to Shambalha, the two entered
leaving the physical plane behind.

* * * * *
[Mid Town Sloanville:
Monday, Mid Morning]

     Peter Caine has not having a good week. He had been troubled by
strange dreams and vision, most of which did not make sense to him.
Those that did make sense where those he could do without. Not that all 
the dreams that made sense were bad, in fact some were very pleasant.
The fact remained, he was not getting enough sleep. An he had this
feeling of depending doom. Shaking the feeling, Peter got down to work.

     "Freeze! Police," said Peter. There was the thrill of finally
capturing one of the suspects involved in the robbery that Detective 
Caine and Detective Jody Powell were working on. A lead that Powell 
uncovered leaded them to this moment. The case involved the robbery of a
local store in China town by three masked assailants. Despite the masks,
one of the assailants was identified and picked up. In questioning the
first suspect's relatives and friends, Peter discovered that his
girlfriend had assisted in the robbery, thus providing the second
suspect.  Now they were closing on the third from the information Jody 
got from the girlfriend.
     /Typical situation,/ thought Peter, /one suspect with a single gun
against two detectives and six uniforms, all armed and aiming at the
suspect./ Out loud he said, "Drop the gun. Put your hands on your head."
     Peter could not help but remember what his father, Kwai Chang
Caine, would say, /no one is born evil. We must help those who have
fallen./ He wanted to believe that, so as the suspect lowered his gun he
relaxed a bit. But instead of dropping the gun completely, the suspect
shot at one of the officers and Jody. "Damn," Peter shouted as he fired 
his gun. 
     A single shot rang out, then silence descended. Cautiously
Peter and the other officers approached the suspect. As they neared him, 
it was obvious that he was dead.
     Seeing Peter's dark face Jody tried joking, "Police 1, Criminal 0."
Jody noted that it had not helped so she fell silent. Taking charge of
the scene Jody said to nearest officer, "Have the gun dusted for prints. 
And clean up the mess."
     "Why do we have to clean up?" asked one of the uniformed officer.
     "You wanted to do the paperwork?" Jody asked nicely.
     "No ma'am," came the reply.

     /Here we go again,/ Captain Karen Simms thought. Detective Peter
Caine, one of her best detectives, was sitting in her office. She could
tell that Peter did not want to be here. Not now or the other times that
involved a shootout but regulations required it. /Well, let's get
started,/ she thought. To Peter she stated, "You know why you're here."
     "Yes Captain," Peter answered even though it was not a question. 
"Regulations say that an officer involved in a shootout that results in 
a fatality is to be removed from street duty by either being placed on 
desk duty or suspended for a week while the investigation going on."
     /And we both know which you'll choose,/ Simms thought. With a sigh
Simms said, "I'll tell the Chief and get the paperwork started.
Dismissed Detective." As she started filling out the forms that had 
Detective Caine assigned to a desk for a week she noted that he had not 
left. Puzzled she looked up.
     As she looked up she noticed that Peter's gun was on her desk along
with his badge. As she opened her mouth to ask what was he doing, Peter
said, "I ... I need the time off." Simms looked stunned. This had not
happen before. Peter always took the desk duty over suspension so he
could still be on shift. Before she could recover from her shock Peter
left the precinct.

* * * * * * * * *

[Hundred First Precinct:
Wednesday, Noon]

     Detective Jody Powell was worried. She had this feeling of dread.
As if seeing Peter Caine walking out of the precinct was like seeing him
walking out of their lives. Nor was she alone in her concern but only
she felt there was more going on then just the shootout investigation. 
The investigation had showed that Peter acted as he should have but the
news did not changed his sour mood. /Peter is acting like ... not Peter,/ 
she thought. She had tried calling him at his apartment but he did not 
answer his phone. After the ninth try in as many hours, she went there 
in person to try talk to him. When she found the door locked, she got 
Kermit to open the door to his apartment. They found it empty and 
a mess as if Peter had not been there for a while. Now Jody's fears had 
infected Kermit. They decided to look into all of Peter's hangouts to 
see if they could find him.
     After looking all over, Jody decided to go to see if Peter was over
his father's house in China town. After hesitating a moment at the 
threshold she entered the studio that Caine called home. She noticed that 
the candles were lit so she assumed that Caine was home. Feeling 
like an intruder Jody tip-toed through the work-out area towards the 
meditation room. After a while she felt silly and walked normally as she 
entered the meditation room. Although the light was dim she could see 
that someone was sitting in the room meditating. Softly she asked, "Caine?"
     "He's not here," came a voice from the room.
     The voice was so flat Jody could not believe that it came from a
living person so she repeated, "Caine?"
     The figure turned to face her and Peter said, "My father is not
     Jody could not believe her eyes. Peter Caine sat but a few feet
away and yet it was like he was in another place. His voice was flat,
lacking any life or emotions that Jody normally associated with him.
Although scared for no reason she could think of, she tried talking to
him. "Peter.... What's wrong?"
     Peter looked through her, not at her, and stated in a mono tone
voice, "My father's not here and I didn't know where he is."
     "Peter, tell me what wrong!" Jody screamed.
     "You would not understand," Peter said in the same flat voice he
had been using.
     "Try me!" Jody said.
     Peter looked past her at something in the distance. When she turned 
to see at what held Peter's attention, she saw nothing. As she turned back 
to ask what was going on, she saw that he was gone.

* * * * * * * * *

Wednesday, Evening]

     It was late. Peter knew that but he could not make himself return
to his bed nor to his father's dwelling. Instead he walked away, leaving
his car where he left it. After walking aimlessly for hours, he realized 
he had walked all the way the other side of town. He remembered the
park. His foster father, Paul Blaisdell, had taken him here a month after 
Peter had came to live with the Blaisdells. He liked the park. It had trees, 
benches, and a small lake that few people looked at. Peter moved towards 
the lake. As he neared it, he remembered a lake near his father's temple 
that he had gone to when his life was in turmoil like it was now. Somehow,
knowing that he would be alone for the night Peter sat down into a half
lotus and begin to meditate.
     After a number of attempts Peter found the calmness within himself
that was his center. It took him some time to find it because he
realized he was trying too hard. Once he stopped trying so hard it was
easy to locate. Once he centered himself, as his father had taught him, he
tried to do something he had not tried in a long time. With his mind 
centered he began to look for the center of the World. Once more after a 
few failures he realized he was trying to force the search. Remembering
what the visiting Priest who had taught his class when his father was away.
Peter sought the link between his center and the World's center.
/Grounding is what the Priest had called it,/ Peter thought.
     Once the connection was formed, just as the last time, a flooded of
energy rushed at him. It felt like the time that he joined his chi with
his father and Lo Si's but more intense and without either of the
Shambalha Masters overlapping presences. It felt like the flood was 
endless and that he would drown. But he was older now, not the child that 
then needed Master Ping Hai and the visiting Priest to help him out of 
the flood. He had finished his Shaolin training. So instead of drowning 
Peter became one with the flood and the flow seemed to slow down enough 
for him to control it. While feeling energized physically, Peter still 
felt the mental exhaustion. He also felt safe despite that fact that he
was out in the open. He fell asleep in the park while mediating. As 
sleep began to claim him he felt something warm and soft wrap around him. 
A small part of his mind was troubled for he felt scales too. /Like a 
dragon had wrapped itself around me,/ he thought but he was too tired to
do anything about it.
     Thus did Peter Caine sleep in a park that night with a blue-green
dragon wrapped around him to protect him with his mother's voice sing
him to sleep.
=== End of Part 1 ===

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