Glitches Free Online Serial Novel


Chapter 13

Everyone in the room physically recoiled at once when I entered the room. I could see the look on their faces. It was as if I was contagious – and was to be avoided at all cost. I was a little off my game as well. I may have looked fine, but mentally I’d definitely lost a significant portion of my sanity with the events in the quad back in Durango.

Derek recovered the quickest and spoke first, “We thought you’d blown yourself to smithereens. Cat and I looked for you everywhere.” His statement was a question even if it had no questioning tone in it.

I just nodded at this. I didn’t really care what they thought of me at this point. Right at this moment I could only think of one thing. Was Bea dying? I sort of guessed I hadn’t killed her by the simple fact that DJ hadn’t gone ape when I walked in. But I also didn’t see her anywhere in the vicinity. But she had led me to the Chalet anyway – so I knew she had to still be breathing anyway.

Yolanda walked over tentatively and I tried to read her face to see if she was in anyway involved with berserked me with the memories of the shack. I didn’t even know if she was Emp capable. For all I knew she couldn’t pull off a maneuver like that. Never mind the fact that I had never told her about the shack. No, I had no reason to think it was Yo. But there was something wrong with the way she was looking at me now.

“I had absolutely no idea.” Yolanda was shaking her head as she said it. But I had no idea what she was talking about. She had no idea about what? She looked at the floor and when she looked up she was crying. “It was all my fault. I shouldn’t have thrown you in the deep end like that. No one has ever seen… and I thought… and maybe I could, maybe make it work…”

I think I understood better what she might be trying to convey. She was feeling guilty at having hit the throttle on the ‘training’ if you wanted to call it that. And now we were most likely being hunted throughout the country and tracked through every means available to the Federal Government. It was only a matter of time before they would pick up the scent again. The world had suddenly and radically changed. And she realized a large part of this was her doing.

A brittle part of me snapped at that moment and I pulled her in closely as she curled up in my chest. I wrapped both my arms around her and cradled her as she cried. She must have been carrying this strain inside her head since the explosion. She had to have been trying to hold it all together for the team over these past three days. And had built up into this release when I walked in the door. I lifted her chin with my index finger and looked her square in the eye and said, “Everything is going to be ok.” I waited three beats and then said it again. “Everything is going to be ok.” I personally didn’t believe a word of it. But I hoped she did anyway.

I pulled her back into another embrace and held her there a minute. Sumner and Derek were looking at the floor. Where was Cat? Oh, there she was, over on the balcony with her feet hanging down. I winked her direction and she waved back at me with her goofy tooth missing smile of hers.

And then I asked quietly, “Where is she?” Derek tensed a bit, but no one else moved. “Derek, please. Where is she?” He subtly lifted a nod in the direction of the hallway off to the left and I nodded my thanks in return. Yo extracted herself from my embrace and used the sleeve of her shirt to wipe her nose as she stepped away.

It was all I could do to keep from sprinting down the hallway looking for her pell-mell. I sucked in my breath as I wandered down the hallway and tried to use the time to calm my breathing and steady my pulse. As I came to the first hallway doorway I pushed open the door and looked in. This was obviously Sumner’s room. I could just tell by the smell and the feel of the room.

The next door I came to was just alive with everything about her. This was it. I pushed the door slowly open and peeked my head in. And there she was again at last. With her glowing red hair and the way she was laying there in the bed she looked like something directly out of a fairy tale. She was pale though I noticed. Not the beautiful fairy tale pale of slight princess. No, it was the pale of ill portent that precedes the coming of death. It was then that I became very worried for her life.

I quietly walked over to her bedside and took her hand in mine. Oh how cold she was. I walked over to the closet and grabbed another blanket off the shelf and unfolded it. I laid it out down the length of the bed and tucked it in as best as I could.

And then guilt hit me like a tidal wave. I had put Bea in this coma. I was so enraged I was out of my mind. Even if she had been the one to hit me with the visions of the shack from my past it shouldn’t have been a death sentence. I just couldn’t stand myself. I systematically walked over to the open door and closed it. I then slowly locked it. Turning back to Bea I burrowed my head into her shoulder and began to weep like never before. I was just completely and totally beside myself with grief. I just couldn’t believe that I would pile drive her into the earth like I did. And then to drop a ten kiloton warhead on her just to pile insult onto injury? What was I thinking?

I tried to keep my sobbing as quiet as possible but I was out of control at this point. I hated myself. Just despised anyone like me that could do I what I did. And there was nothing I could do about the state she was in. That was the worst part. I was condemned to sit here and watch her die. I found myself crying out to a God I wasn’t even sure existed. I gritted my teeth screamed into her arm. Invoking God to come and intervene. I just couldn’t even think I was so out of my mind.

And then a thought hit me. It was out of the blue. And I laughed it off at first. The thought was simple enough. “Is there really nothing that I can do to help?” I pushed it away but the thought was incessant and continued burrowing deeper by the moment. I pulled away from Bea and covered my face with my hands trying to block out all inputs. What could I do. I can’t do anything.

I could walk her into the nearest hospital and give myself up. I would willing give my life of freedom for her health. But what were the odds a normal doctor would be able to help her? Not after a cranial blast like the one I gave her. But there had to be something I could do. Something. And then my brain began to start saying crazy things to me.

What Bea needs is to go and have the councils and their healers see her. Sumner mentioned there were such things. Maybe that was the right move? But there is no way the councils will have anything to do with us right now. We are beyond radioactive. We are a living, breathing Chernobyl. I wouldn’t go anywhere near me if I didn’t have to.

What if…

I walked over to Bea and unbuttoned the top button of her shirt and placed the palm of my hand on her sternum. I really didn’t know what I was going to do. But I had this feeling like if it were possible to feed her Empath stream with Juggernaut strength it could save her life. But her Emp-stream was just so weak.

I took my hand away. And stared at the beauty lying in front of me. I would do anything for you Bea. Anything. Even hand you my own life if it would only give you a chance. And then the banging started on the door.

“Ben. Its Derek. Come out. I think you’ve done quite enough for one day.”

And now I was mad. But I tried to be reasonable. I walked over to the door and said, “DJ, please listen to me. And listen to me carefully. I am going to save Bea’s life. Just back away from the door and leave me alone.” I listened and there was nothing. And then I could hear Sumner whispering quietly in the background. Yo was there too. What? And Cat? I sensed that they were all there wondering if I was going to hurt Bea. If I’d lost my mind.

It seemed like everyone was determined to treat me like an imbecile.

I stomped my way back over to Bea and then took a deep breath. I slowly and reverently placed my hand again on her exposed skin. The trick was going to be all in the touch. Hopping the circuit – which I wasn’t even sure was possible – and then gently handing her strength in a way she could receive it. I was guessing I had a 20% chance of making this work. Which I figured was a worthwhile chance seeing as though I placed her odds at dying at near certain. It all added up to me.

The banging began again in earnest this time.

Ignoring the noise at the door I began to course the Juggernaut across my brain in search of an Emp onramp. And then I had it. But I immediately knew I was in danger. Something was definitely wrong. It was as if I’d just screwed my face into a light socket. The pain was incredible. But I saw the flow doing exactly what I thought it needed to do and so I began to delicately weave the juggernaut across her Emp wave. When the circuit was finally connected the pain radically decreased but instead I now felt my energy draining at a ridiculous rate.

Any second now and they would force the door. This much was perfectly clear.

Through squinted eyes I began to search her face for any sign of effect. Nothing. I continued to concentrate as I found it harder and harder to maintain the connection. And then through my Emp strained brain I began to whisper for Bea to come back to me. That I loved her. If only I had a chance to show her just how much. Please Bea, come back to me.

And then I sensed that everyone was suddenly standing around me staring on completely aghast.

Through gritted teeth I said, “Do. Not. Touch. Me.”

DJ was furious. “This is completely unacceptable. What does this Neanderthal think he’s doing? I will not allow this.” Thankfully Sumner put two and two together and held him back. But I just couldn’t do it anymore. I felt the lights begin to go dim and fade and I ultimately collapsed onto the floor breaking the bond with my love. And when I fell to the floor I realized that there was something missing. Her voice. Her voice was missing. She had been talking to me throughout. But what had she been saying? They were cooing sounds. The sounds of a mother talking to her child. Gentle sounds of consolation. She was convincing me it was alright – that I should just let her go.

I gritted my teeth as I ground my face into the carpet. I was going to pass out I just knew it and I would be out as she died. I would never forgive myself for not being there. Get up! I screamed at myself. Get up! But the world went black around me.

When I woke up I was face down on the couch and Sumner was there on the floor staring at the ceiling. “Ah there we are.” He said when he noticed my movement. “You don’t do anything halfway do you? I mean seriously.” He really chuckled at that. “Derek has been in with Bea most of the night while you slept. By the way, what is this DJ thing you keep calling him?”

I tried to talk but my mouth was completely dry and I could hardly open it. With a concerted effort I finally pried it open. “Derek the Jealous.”

Sumner howled with laughter at that. And then stifled the noise as quickly as he could. “Seriously? That is brilliant. Absolutely genius.” And then he laughed some more.

“Is she…?” I couldn’t bring myself to say it.

“Dead? No. She’s not dead. Not yet anyway. But I haven’t seen her in a couple hours. My job was security detail for the big gorilla on the couch. ‘Don’t EVEN think about letting him off of that couch. DON’T EVEN.’” He laughed at that again. He must be drunk I thought ruefully to myself. Suddenly jealous.

And then completely out of the blue I heard him say “Mary, Moses and Joseph…”

“Wha? What is it?” I tried to crane around but my muscles wouldn’t react like I was telling them to. And then I saw it too.

My wild haired Celt was standing there in the middle of the room.