Monday, November 5, 2012

Episode Thirty: New Oceans

Episode Thirty

New Oceans

  Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.
-Andre Gide

     Tobie leaned into the door, his key scratching the edges of the key hole. He tried to focus through the intensifying pain in his arm. The door opened.
     Holon gazed down at him, bent over his injured arm. "Welcome home." He offered his hand.
     Avoiding it, Tobie hobbled into the hallway. Skirting the coffee table he collapsed on the couch, holding his arm. Warning bells and a soft slosh of water. Anemone materialized out of a descending ball of mist. She perched on the couch arm, cooing in pigeon calls and the undertones of tinkling bells. Her fingers reached for Tobie's sleeve.
     Tobie glared at the apparition. "She's not touching me."
     "As you wish." Holon stood and headed towards his room.
     Tobie closed his eyes. The pain settled deeper into his skin, causing his breathing to shallow. A softness caressed his arm. "Back off," he growled, not opening his eyes. The comfort slipped away with a sad chime.
     Hearing a door close, he looked up. Holon came from his room, a ball of bandages and a bottle of antiseptic in hand. Tobie gazed at the floor as he sat beside him. He saw Holon open his hand in his peripheral and with a sigh unwrapped his fingers from his arm.
     Holon examined the streaks of burnt flesh, pulling up the edge of Tobie's polo to look at his shoulder.            

 "Its not bad."
     "Well it doesn't feel good," Tobie muttered. He glared at the bottle Holon was upending into a strip of bandage. "Is that gonna hurt?"
     Tobie rolled his eyes. "Great."
     "You should be proud. Sending a Glimmer back. Good work."
     "You're just happy I didn't discorporate it."
     Holon smiled. "I'm not sure that means what you think it means."
     "Whatever." Tobie cringed. Holon's grip tightened.
     "I haven't even touched you." The damp bandage hovered an inch from his skin.
     "Yeah, well...Just...get it over with."
     Holon, watching Tobie, dabbed the cloth against his arm. Tobie shuttered and bit his lip, but remain quiet. Holon continued cleaning the burns then set about wrapping the boy's arm.
     "You could have waited," he mentioned lightly.
     Tobie glared up at him. "Yeah? Waited for what?"
     "If the Glimmer had enough presence in this world to do this," Holon said, indicating the gashes caused by the Glimmer's anger, "It could have proved more dangerous. I assume the girl was unharmed?"
     "She got a little banged up, but she was fine. I got her home." Tobie glanced at the carpet. "Jacob was hard to convince she just fell down the hill while playing."
     "But you did convince him."
    "Yeah, yeah. I did. Would have been easier I guess if you had just blanked her..."
     "So you should have wait--"
     Tobie ran a hand over his eyes. "Get off my case, man. I don't need you keeping tabs on me."
     "Wouldn't have to if you kept--"
     "What? My place?" Tobie winced as Holon dabbed antiseptic over the burn like gashes on his arm.
     "If you reasoned that way you wouldn't have gone after the Glimmer alone."
     Tobie grunted, chin plopping into his hand as Holon secured the gauze. "You're one to talk."
     Holon tucked the end of the gauze over Tobie's knuckles. He stood, picking up the bottle and unused antiseptic. "We have a few sensitives we should keep an eye on as well."
     "Sensitives? You think Jacob and his sister are...Tch. Great. More work. I'm already behind." Tobie flexed his fingers, testing the subsiding pain. He glanced up at Holon's retreating back. "So...uh. I tried to contact Luc."
     Holon turned to him. Tobie quavered under his cool expression.
     "Where you in need?"
     "No! I said I handled it. I just...That thing tried to take a chunk outta my face so I wanted to tell him I was ok is all." He stretched across the couch, injured arm over his forehead. "And I got nothing back." At Holon's silence he continued angrily. "So? What does that mean?"
     "Any number of things." Holon headed towards his room.
     "Well thanks for being so helpful," Tobie griped, raising up a bit to throw the antiseptic bottle in annoyance. It hit a shut door.

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