Saturday, December 1, 2012

NaNoWriMo 2012: [Pargons Of Virtue: book #1] Day #9

Enjoy my brainstorm!

On the sundeck, Mary looked out on the busy streets below. The street lights and head lights showed the energy of the city. Her black evening dress hung elegantly from her body.

Dr. Evil came out to the deck, eager to finally give her a kiss. They embraced. They parted for a good look into each others eyes.

Snag! Two wires wrapped around them; one wire per neck. Two thugs dragged them into the hotel room.

Hero entered the hotel, and casually checked for any mail or messages with the concierge.

Dr. Evil and his minion jerked the victims around to force fear into them. Sweat poured down their faces as they gasped for air.

In the elevator, Hero opened the package and pulled out the handgun that he had expected.

Dr. Evil threw the man to the ground, and looked at him coldly.

The man coughed and gasped for air, and said, “What do you want? Money?”

“I don't like games, professor. I am very impatient. Give us the microfilm or else.” He turned to the woman. He poked her forearm with the tip of his sword, and said, “You have such flawless skin. Your first scar will be such a tragedy.”

She gasped and tried to pull her arm away, but the minion held it in place.

Dr. Evil turned to the professor, then smiled, and then flicked an eyebrow.

Hero stepped out of the elevator just outside of their room.

Minion yanked her arm to the side. She gasped.

Hero stopped, when he heard the noise. He turned to his gal, and said, “Go back in the elevator.”

She saw the look in his eye, and heard his tone. She ran, but the doors shut too early.

Dr. Evil raised his sword, and swung. He stopped, just a millimetre away from her skin.

Her eyes were wide open, and she gasped for air, like a fish out of water struggling to flush water over its gills.

Dr. Evil turned to the professor with a smile.

Gal turned to Hero, while repeatedly pressing the elevator buttons.

Hero mouthed the words, “Go down the stairs!”

Dr. Evil said, “Go down stairs to keep an eye out for Hero.”

Hero heard it. He gestured to his gal, and they ran to the entrance to the stair well. They locked lips.

Two minions walked casually by and bang! The bullet barely missed Hero's head.

Hero ducked into the stair well.

The minions sprinted after them.

Minion #1 burst through the door first, with his gun pointed. He stepped forward to look down. From behind, Hero kicked Minion #1, sending him flying to his doom. He landed with a thud.

Minion #2 burst through, with a sword swinging, Hero could not hide in time for another ambush. Swipe; swing; swipe: Minion #2 poured out all he had.

Hero stepped back. His foot slipped, but gained stability on the next step. Hero continued to block, but Minion #2 thrusted with a kick, sending Hero to the next landing. Hero's back absorbed most of the blow of hitting the wall, but his head banged on it as well. He tried to focus. Minion #2 jumped down, and swung.

Swing. Block. Punch. Parry. Their arms were a tangle and blurred.

Hero knocked the sword out of Minion #2's hand, sending it flying down to the next landing.

Hero grabbed him and threw him over the rails. He clung tightly to Minion #2, and they landed with a grunt. They wrestled. Hero put him in a head lock.

Minion #2 struggled. His legs fluttered to find any footing. He slowed down. Slower. Slower.

Soon Hero felt the body go limp.

Surprise! Wire around the neck! “Where is the microfilm, Mr. Jones?” Strangle. Yank.

Just downstairs

He jerked her, sending her hair flying. Twist. Sending her Hair flying everywhere!

Coming upstairs

He thrusted his knife. I stepped aside, and knocked it out of his hands, sending it spinning through the air, and she ducked.

He smashed Dr. Evil's head against the wall. He shoved Dr. Evil over the rail. I gripped so tightly, that I got pulled over as well.

Hero's back against the wall. Thug ran in. Hero pulled thug's arm; kicked. Thug fell; landed.

Minion dashed in with sword; swung; thrusts through the block. He jumped with sword overhead.

Hero ducked.

Minion swung left.

Hero stepped back.

Minion swung right.

Hero blocked; grabbed arm; flipped Minion over rail. Ran down. Jump kicked.

Minion dodged; solid kick.

Hero rolled down stairs.

Minion grabbed; shoved against glass; glass scattered about. Hero grunted.

Hero knocked sword; swords spun away nearly cutting gal.

Hero punched. Minion blocked; punched back. Hero blocked. Minion punched. Hero blocked kick, blocked punch, blocked punch; gasping for air. Hero parried punch; parried kick; parried punch. Minion contacted jaw; punched stomach. Hero struggled to focus. Minion kicked belly. Hero groaned. Minion faked left; punched right; contacted belly. Hero folds over.

Hero winced; checked lip; blocked; upper cut; grabbed lapels; leaned back and threw minion over downstairs; ran and jumped downstairs, with knife wound up; screamed; thrust into base of neck.

Minion screamed. His eyes burst open. Dark light flashed out of his mouth, nose and eyes.

Hero leaned back, squeezed his eyes shut, and covered his eyes with his forearm.

Minion screamed while his body began to wither, as if he were a mushroom decomposing in hyper speed. Every bit of flesh, that disappeared, allowed more dark light to shine through.

The dark light burned onto hero's directly exposed skin, scarring his skin into a muddy brown. Hero screamed, too. He started off lightly, as his body just realized the pain, and then his voice shrilled in unquenchable agony.

# # #

“Do you desire to become a righteous warrior?”

“I do.”

“This job comes at a cost. In order to do it, you must take your tolerance for evil powers and channel that into your power for goodness. This will weaken you in one area to strengthen you in another. You might die when you are attacked. You might become severely scarred for the rest of your life. You might live in excruciating pain until the day that you die, and you will never ever be allowed to take your own life. Do you accept this?”

He looked down to the ground and to the side. He breathed deeply, and slowly exhaled. In his moment of clarity, he looked up and said, “I do.”

“There is no turning back.”

The young man nodded.

“Then kneel and turn your head up to me.”

The young man knelt, and then closed his eyes. He tilted his head back. He steadied himself by breathing slowly.

The cleric, General Stillwell, put his left hand behind the young man's head for support, and took the badge, and placed it on the young man's forehead.

The young man tensed, and inhaled sharply.

“Breath! Keep breathing!”

He made rapid breaths, and the cleric pressed it in harder. The teen's eyes and mouth burst open. The whites all around his eyes were visible. His hands trembled. He whimpered.

“Steady yourself!” The cleric leaned into it.

The teen screamed at the top of his lungs. The teen's mouth, nose and eyes, shimmered for a second, and then the shimmering light imploded into the skull, while the unrelenting screaming filled the parade square. His hands opened and the tendons on the back of his hands were raised. After a few moments of screaming and pressing, the mouth, nose, and eyes shone forth a glimmer of light. The light grew. As it did, his voice quietened, until light beamed through at full intensity.

In an explosive flash, the light disappeared, and the teen was silent. His eyes and mouth remained open. His arms dangled lifelessly to the side.

As the cleric felt the teen's weight deaden, he reached around with his free arm to give more support.

The teen returned to consciousness, and blinked. He looked around to get his bearings. When he realized what had happened, he smiled.

The cleric picked him up. Everybody clapped.

# # #

John looked at the man's darkened cheek. John was not sure, but the man appeared to have a chemical burn. It appeared scarred. John figured that if it wasn't a chemical burn, then perhaps it was a chemical applied to heal the injury. He noticed the same discolouration on the palm of the right hand.

# # #

John sat down on the bus ride home. He let his mind relax for a few moments. Even though Tom was the amazing person, John felt like an enlightened hero. He wondered how many people knew any of the things that he had learned in the last four Fridays. He knew that most people viewed paladins as just religious enforcers. He wondered how many people could begin to fathom the blisters and the fatigue.

At home he dumped his backpack in the corner of his room, and collapsed in his bed.

The phone rang. He saw that it was Carl.

He pressed a button, and said, “Yo.”

“What's up?”

“Just laying in bed. What's happening?”

“We're going to play basketball. Bring a bat or something.”

“Why?” John was quite sure about why, but he hoped that Carl had something else in mind.

“Those guys might show up again.”

“Man, I had a long afternoon at volunteering. I need to eat supper, anyways.”

“Come on, man. Are you afraid of those guys?”

“No, man. I'm just tired, and I honestly don't want trouble. Maybe you should play at a different place. Why would you want to go back there?”

“Why should we go somewhere else? That place is ours. It's not fair that they come here and tell us what to do. If the paladins can't sort things out, then why shouldn't we take things in our own hands. Personal responsibility, right?”

John hesitated.

“Don't you want to support us?”

“Yeah, of course.”

“Then just come out and hang with us. Bring a bat just in case. If there are problems, then we'll try to shut it down early, before it turns bad. If they want to fight, then we'll just defend ourselves.”

John sighed, and shook his head in disbelief. “All right.”

“Cool. I'm heading out right now. How much time do you need?”

“I'll just need to get changed, and fill my bottle with water, lace up, and walk over.”

“Awesome. And no trouble out of you, you rebel!” Carl laughed.

As John laced up his high cuts, he hollered, “Mom, just heading to the courts for a bit.”

As he opened the door, she said back, “Play later. Supper's going to be ready in half an hour.”

“I'll just be gone for twenty nine minutes.” He closed the door behind him. He paused on the walkway to the sidewalk, as he reflected on how he had just responded to his mom. He assuaged his guilt by telling himself that he had agreed to play basketball.

He walked along his street, bouncing his ball with his right hand, and carrying a baseball bat in the other. He kept repeating to himself, “Basketball is a healthy sport. It's a good use of time. Staying in bed is lazy. There is nothing wrong with this.” All he could do was shake his head.

He turned the corner, and saw many cars parked near the courts. None of them seemed to belong to Brock or his friends.

While he walked, he imagined what could happen.

Perhaps Brock and his friends would come to start a fight, or perhaps Carl would goad them. John really did not know if Carl had it in him to kill somebody, or even contain rage.

John thought that it would have been very interesting, if he could find something kind and gentle to say to make them all friends. He imagined a paladin showing up, in shining armour, and saying something eloquent, that would make them all put their hands at their chins, and say, “Hm, how profound.” He laughed.

When he reached the courts, he saw the guys.

Carl was doing layups at one hoop. Other guys were practising free throws at other hoops.

Two cars pulled up. The tinted glass hid the passengers and drivers well, but it was not hard to figure out who they might be.

Eight people stepped out, and John thought, “This isn't a way to spend a Friday. I want this to end!”

Carl said, “Get your bats, guys!”

John said, “Carl...”

Carl picked up his bat. “Hey, I'm just being sure.”

Brock was not among them, but his best friend, Jake, was. He picked up a spare ball, that had rolled to the court entrance. He looked at Carl, who stood waiting at the centre line. “Hey, guys! Having fun?” He tossed a free throw, and it whooshed through the hoop.

John breathed a sigh of relief. He had expected Carl to say something antagonistic. “Okay, guys, um, we're about to begin the game. We won't be needing that court, so why don't you guys go over there? We don't need that ball. We could lend it to you.”

James, John's other friend, said, “That's my ball.” He creased his eyebrows in surprise, and then looked at John questioningly, and said, “I don't want to lend it to him.”

John said, “You're right. I should have checked. Sorry.” He turned to Jake and said, “Here. Take my ball.” He bounce passed it to Jake.

Jake caught it, and then whipped James's ball at Carl.

Carl caught, and then threw it behind him, without breaking eye contact.

John thought, “Oh, boy.” He said, “Okay. Let's get started.”

Jake said, “No. We want this court.”

John said, “Okay-ay-ay. Let's go guys.”

Carl said, “Is this a joke? What are you doing?”

John said, “We only here for a few minutes. Let's just get some ball going. Let's get as much as possible.” He looked Carl square in the eyes, and said firmly, “Come on.” He looked at James, and said, “Let's go.”

James shook his head, and put his hands on his hips. “This is crazy.”

He looked at James, and said, “Lets go!” He looked at his other friends, and said, “Move!”

James walked to the next court. “I can't believe this.” The other followed.

Jake watched all of this with a smile on his face. “Hey wait! We don't want just this court. We want this half, and that half. It's a weird version of European basketball.” He then shot his ball at John's sports bottle. Water exploded everywhere.

John heard Carl suck in a lung full of air, and pictured Carl tightening up his fists. John put his hand out to grab Carl's elbow, and said, “Don't--”, but it was too late.

Like a bull wilfully stepping into a China shop to create wanton destruction, Carl walked over with two fists, and James was right behind him with a grin and a throbbing vein on his forehead.

Carl burst into a run. He tackled Jake, and some of Jake's friends jumped on. Others kicked. Others punched. James grabbed one by the scruff of the neck, and jerked back.

The victim writhed in pain and moaned. John shuttered at the thought of accidentally killing some of them. As much as he was upset with Carl, he knew that Carl was being extremely patient.

James roundhouse kicked another foe.

John's other friends ran into the fray.

John muttered under his breath, “Guys, what are you doing? Oh, God. What do I do?”

John ran to the only guy attacking Carl. John dragged him away in a headlock. The guy's feet fluttered about to keep up with John. John felt the body slow down. He dumped the guy in the corner, pointed a finger, and said, “DON'T YOU DARE GET UP!” He ran back to the group. He saw that each person was paired off, and thought, “So the sides were balanced.”

He noticed that Carl was pounding on Jake's head. Jake put up feeble resistance, and his eyes were partially closed. John hooked Carl's punching arm, and then slipped him into a half nelson. John pulled him back and slipped him into a full nelson. “That's enough!”

Carl jerked to and fro. John held fast. Carl twisted and bended, reminding John of what it must have been like to ride a bucking bronco.

“Carl! I know that you don't agree with this, but it doesn't have to end with violence. He's had enough.”

Carl gripped John's forearms, and tried to pull them apart.

“Look at him! Just look!”

Carl elbowed backwards, causing John to grunt. Carl breathed heavily. He said, “Let go, John!”

“I won't let go, until you promise to stop.” John checked on the others. They were starting to wind down their own battles.

Carl elbowed a few more times, making John's rib cage rattle deeply. “All right.”

John immediately let go. He knew that Carl's word was good.

Carl took a couple of seconds, and then walked to his belongings.

“Carl, you did a good job. You didn't need to go any further.”

Carl turned, pointed his finger,, and said, “I trusted you to be on my side—to cover my back!.”

“I did cover your back. I pulled that guy off of you.”

“Is that all? That's not good enough.” He continued walking. When he neared a ball, he deviated to it, and booted it against the fence. He turned to John, and said, “You're dead to me.”


During supper, he chewed slowly, and pushed his peas around the plate. He wished that he had one of those sacks with the two stones. He liked the idea of having been able to ask whether or not he should have went to play.

He had such mixed feelings. He felt a profound amazement that he might have actually saved somebody's life, and prevented his former best friend from going to jail, and a fear that he almost jumped in. He wanted to believe that he was supposed to be there to prevent bad things from happening, but he also believed that he was just lucky. At that one split second, he had the idea that he could just defend and restrain, and it all worked out okay. He also hoped that he had the courage to kill somebody, if it meant defending somebody else.


“Guys, thanks for calling me to come out tonight.”

Carl said, “Hey, no problem man.” He and the others looked at him, and waited for an explanation for why he would say such a thing.

“You guys know what? I've been talking with a former paladin. He told me a lot of neat stories.” John paused for effect

Carl said, “Yeah, like what?”

“Well, like this time, when he had to talk a guy into giving up a weapon. The paladin convinced that guy to turn himself in. That was cool.”

“Well, we didn't do anything.”

“No, I don't mean that you did.”

“Just talking then? That's cool...”

“No. What I mean is that we can convince those guys to not fight.”

“We can't, man. There's just no talking to these guys. We're not paladins, and...and...” He shook his head and shrugged. “You just can't.”

“There's a lot of bad blood, isn't there?”

“Why are you talking like this?”

“Like what?”

“Like that! Like 'isn't there?' You never say that.”

“I don't know. I'm trying to convince you.”

“Don't convince me. Convince the other guys.”

“I will. I just want you to know that we don't have to use bats.”

Carl rolled his eyes. “You can't convince them, though.”

James said, “Let's just play ball.” He bounced it twice, and then bounce passed it to another friend.

John said, “What does everybody else think?”

The others were already raising their hands to ready themselves for a pass.

Carl walked to John, and said, “I respect you for having your own opinion, but it doesn't work that way.

“So, you're just going to pick up your bats and pound them?”

“Nope. They always start it. They have no business here.” He walked to the rest of the group, who had played their way to the end of the court. He turned, and walked backwards, while he said, “I won't start anything. I promise.” He turned forward.

“Yeah, okay, but I want you to put an end to it.”

He turned backwards again., With his head tilted head to John, he pointed his finger and said, “Oh, believe me. I will.” He turned forward again, and walked.

“That's not what I meant.”

Carl just waved backwards.


John had not been to church in ages. He watched Carl walk away. John said in his head, “God, I don't know if you care, but if something is going down, and if I can do anything about it, then please help.” He wondered if Tom ever said something like that. He believed that he should have got Tom's number, so that he could ask for advice.

The end. Thank you for reading!

No comments:

Post a Comment