Eternal Knight: Seizures
Urban fantasy, action adventure, magic, comedy
Darkness isn’t so bad if you don’t expect the light. I liked being in the dark. Fewer disappointments if you can’t be seen. Fewer judgments if people can’t see what you’re up to.
“Max” The voice squawks through the cheap radio that was clipped to my shoulder. I ignore it, smiling, continuing to concentrate on the task at hand.
“Max,” it calls again through a broken signal. “I know your radio’s on, Max. I can see the light on the switchboard.”
I snarl and cuss as I snatch the radio off my shoulder firmly hold down the call button. Stupid technology. “I’m busy Janet, what in Christ’s name is so important?”
“There’s a drunk terrorizing the cafe court and Sam’s a little too old and too fat to take care of him.” Janet responds.
“Is the light from my radio broken?” Sam chimes in.
“Tell me I’m lying.” she retorts.
Those two needed to get a room and I needed not to think about that. “Alright. Fine. I’m on my way.” I spit into the radio before letting it go.
Stupid drunks. Don’t they know better than to wander into a mall and cause trouble?
Carefully, I put the lid back on my flask and tuck it safely into my back pocket before I pick my six foot-eight frame up off the over turned bucket I’ve been sitting on and open the broom closet door.
God I hate drunks.
My footsteps echo off the sandy colored linoleum as I make my way through the empty pastel painted halls past cell phone kiosks, brightly lit storefronts and vending machines towards the large group gathering in the cafe court.
Pushing through the crowd I can hear the deep grumblings of a man I can only hope is very large, mildly out of shape, and doesn’t have a glass jaw.
Breaking through the inner ring I see my prize and feel a little happy inside. The guy looked to be a little over six feet tall and two-fifty if he was a pound. His tattered flannel shirt and dirty jeans hang loose on his frame as he swings wildly at a couple of kids from one of the pizza shops. In his right hand he has a can of cheap beer and rest of him looked like he hadn’t bathed or showered this side of three days. Dude was a mess. If it hadn’t been for pesky things like laws I’d have lit him up right there, but the bills don’t pay themselves and I need this crappy job.
“Sir.” I say to him in my official voice. “ Sir, what seems to be the problem here?” I ask him as I walk into the clear the crowd had created around him.
“I wund dat soopid, sheeting, whore brought oud here now!” He slurs. “She gonna gets whas she’s gawt comin’d to ‘er!”
“While I feel that all cheating whores should get what they have coming to them.” I sympathize. “I believe that, that, particular description would include many of our shoppers and female employees, for whom I have been hired to protect. So I’m going to have to ask you to leave the premises.”
I hear the inhaled hush of the crowd and realize that perhaps the couple of nips I’d had from my flask had caused me to overstate my point a bit. Best to change the subject before any questions were asked.
“So, I need you need to vacate the mall grounds, including, but not limited to, the building and the parking lot or I will have to forcibly remove you.” I say with as much power as I can muster. In the back of my head I’m begging this guy to put up a fight.
The drunk takes a stumble step then looks at me with a mean mug. “Wha, what did you jus’ say to me?”
I take a step closer and look the man in his eye. “It’s quite simple sir. Go home, sleep it off, and you just have to be embarrassed about being drunk in public. Or…” I raise a finger so he understands I’m making a point. “You can refuse to leave, I beat you unconscious, and you wake up in a jail cell embarrassed you were drunk and you got your ass kicked in public.”
“Why you little sawed off…” The drunk guy starts to cuss me.
“By law” I interrupt him. “I am required to tell you that I am thoroughly trained in self defense and have been given permission to use that training to remove you if necessary.”
“You ain’t shit.” The drunk guy at the end of a long silent and very disgusting burp. Then throws his beer can down and raises his fists.
Oh, thank you Lord.
I settle into a ready position and wait for him to throw the first punch. Pesky laws. I don’t have to wait long before I’m staring down the end of his arm as throws a haymaker so slow and telegraphed that I couldn’t tell if he was trying to hit me or hug me. I chose the former and raise my arm to block.
As the pressure of his arm bears down on mine there’s a flash of light and I lose sight of the drunken man. There’s another flash and I can see the drunk again this time his hand is drawn back for another blow. I shift my weight preparing to block again when I’m rocked by another flash. This time I can see bright green hills standing starkly in front of dark storm clouds. I can smell pungent aroma of dew covered grass mixed with dirt and campfires.
Oh God, not now.
There’s another flash of light and I’m back in the mall. The drunk man’s ham hock of a fist comes crashing down on my jaw, jarring my senses, streaks of red pain course through my head. I cover up my head and face and try to buy some time to counter.
Another flash of light and I can see the grass covered in droplets that shimmer by morning light. I can see smoke in the distance, but I can’t place it’s source. I sense fear all around. Fear and anticipation of something.
Again I’m rocked by a bright flash of light. As I open my blurry eyes I see that I’m on the floor. My back and head are aching like crazy. I can only imagine that I went down hard for one reason or another. I roll onto my side just in time to see the drunkards foot coming right at me. I clench and try to tuck, but I’m a little to slow as I feel his foot sinking into my stomach. The air wooshes out of my lungs through my teeth like I was an untied balloon. I’m treated to an astronomers dream as I watch stars dance before my eyes.
I want to fight back I want to stop this guy before he finishes with me and finds someone else. Putting that plan into motion, I right myself so I can push myself up on my feet. I’m woozy and sore, but on my worst day I know I can take this guy at his best.
Taking a step back I test my legs. They seem strong. I roll shoulders to see if there’s any kink in them. They work fine. Even my ribs and head seems to be clearing up. Maybe this guy didn’t hurt me as bad as I thought. Too bad for him I plan inflict a lot more pain on him than he’s managed, so far, on me.
Finding my opponent I know I need to end this quick. It’s been a long time since I’d had a seizure like this. I had almost hoped that I’d gotten better. Seeing my opening and put everything I have behind my right arm and swing for the fences.
Another flash of light.
I can see the grass again. I stare intently at the individual blades while waiting for another flash. Hoping for another ticket back to reality. It doesn’t come.
Realizing this is my new reality I begin looking around my new surroundings. The first thing I notice is that I’m not actually standing on the ground. I’m on a horse. Another look shows me that I’m not alone either. There seems to be thousands of men teaming around me, either on foot or on horseback. All of them dressed in armor covered with a shock white tunic embroidered with a crimson cross. My history is kinda rusty, but they kind of reminded me of the Templar Knights.
Slowly I start to raise my arms and examine the clothes the clothes that I have on in this crazy construct my mind gas made for me and to my surprise I also have the same gray chain mail with a shock white tunic.
Putting my arms down and looking around me I see spears, flags, archers, and squires. It’s a regular D and D round table minus the wizards and elves. In my mind, I know that this is only in my mind, but I have to be impressed with the level of detail my subconscious put together. I can see and smell everything. From the green on the grass and to the sweat on the horses.
I just can’t hear anything. The sounds I do hear come through muffled and indistinguishable as if my head were submerged in a bathtub. Moving my head back and forth I try to find a better angle so I can hear things more clearly. All I get is garbled junk.
I catch movement out of the corner of my eye and swivel my head to see it. In front of me I see a knight on a horse with wavy ravens colored hair as well as a beard. He looks angry as if he’s yelling at me, but I can’t make it out. I try to read his lips, I can feel that he’s trying to tell me something important, something I need to do. I can almost make it out.
There’s another flash of light and open my eyes. I’m lying on a bench in the faculty changing area. There’s the uncommon smell of sweat, dirt, and popcorn in the air. Someone must have gotten hungry on their last break.
My neck and back are still sore. As well as my shoulders which probably joined their ranks sometime after the last seizure/blackout.
I raise up off the bench, where I was placed, and take a look around. I didn’t see anyone. Loving bunch my co-workers turned out to be. They just left me here unconscious. Then again I really couldn’t blame them. It’s not like I had a wife or girlfriend to call. Sure, they could call my parents or family, if I had any. Then there’s that little insurance waiver I signed to get the job stating they weren’t liable for any injuries, lost personal items, or money related to any seizures I had while on the job. Gotta love capitalism.
I fish around in my back pocket and find the one true friend I can truly depend on. Opening the flask I take a big pull and let the bourbon warm my chest and the rest of my body. Nothing like that first burn to make a man feel alive. A couple more sips and I don’t even notice the soreness in my back or shoulders anymore.
I take another for good luck before safely tucking it away. I slowly right myself and head over to my locker. After opening it I put my radio on the top shelf and being unbuttoning my uniform shirt. Getting all of the buttons undone I pull out an empty hanger and hang up my uniform. I snatch my hoodie off the hook under my radio, a gray relic from the Rocky Balboa days and grab my keys before slamming the door. I turn to leave only to see a janitor pushing his cart through the gliding door.
He’s an older fellow, early fifties maybe, he has white hair as well as beard and is wearing a pair of dark gray coveralls with a name tag stitched tot he front that read “Jim”. He’s a big guy. He was probably as tall as me when he was younger, but age had taken a couple inches.
He eyes me for a second and smiles. “Finally awake are we?”
I scratch my head embarrassed. “Saw that did ya?”
“Yeah” he says picking up a spray bottle and rag. “Hard to miss really. You’ve got interesting technique when it comes to fighting.”
Oh good, this one’s a comedian.
“I have a medical condition.” I tell him.
He nods and sort of stares through me as he ponders what I said. “Well, in any case, you got him.”
My head jerks up in surprise. “I did?”
“Aye, you did.” The old janitor sprays the counter and starts wiping it off. “That last right you threw connected and you both went down. Cops came and grabbed the drunk. No one knew what to do with you so they just laid you down back here. Thought I’d check on ya. Make sure you didn’t swallow your tongue or somethin’”
Maybe he wasn’t such a bad old fart after all. “Not yet. I say with a smile. “Just a little sore. I appreciate you checking up on me though.” Extending my hand out towards him I ask “What was your name again?” Knowing damned well it’s on his shirt, but not wanting to be presumptuous.
The old man takes hold of my hand and points at his name tag. “Jim” is written in capitol, block letter stickers.
“Right. Thanks for checking up on me Jim.” I tell him and give his hand a firm shake.
When I was done shaking his hand and released my grip he still held his firm. Firm enough I winced a little, on the inside. I look back up to say something to him only to find the smile I had seen just a second before had been with a keen focus and seriousness.
“You take care of yourself lad. There are things coming for you lad, Things you’ve not seen the like of. Mayhap you get the answers you’ve been looking for, mayhap the price be steeper than you’d want to pay.”