Sunday, May 22, 2011

Everybody Here, Comes From Somewhere

The breeze lessened, curiously. I didn't say anything immediately to Lucas. I thought about how to get in touch with Breann or Ava.

"Caleb, I know this call is a bit of an odd surprise. I didn't think I wanted to be involved with my past. The more I thought about the five other people who have went through what I have, I felt I owed you a conversation."

Owed me? That line seemed so arrogant. We're dying from expiring robot parts. I wondered why he and Bruce were so elusive. The closest I had gotten to either was an email exchange with Lucas' former Air Force Academy teammate. I kept my cool.

"Lucas, thank you for calling me. So, how are you, you know, physically?"

I turned my phone to find the mute button so I could record the call and text Breann and Ava. Then he turned hostile.

"Caleb, you and I are going to talk privately or not at all. Whatever you just did with your phone, undo it. This is non-negotiable."

I recoiled at the weirdness. How did he know what I was doing?

"Lucas, I apologize. I was just texting one of the others to let them know we'd found you. I am so excited to hear from you."

Then a glare from the building to my left caught me, causing my eyes to shut.

"You're notifying Breann Lucos, the New York Post reporter. That will not work for me. The information you two have gathered isn't accurate and some people do not want to be involved with it."

I was annoyed and angry. The lack of personality was forgivable. He obviously wasn't going to hang with Breann and I socially. But, Breann, Lena, and Clare had been open and honest and enthusiastic. Even Ava was willing to identify the players and problems.

"Lucas, let's meet in person. Sometimes a phone call doesn't do a subject justice. Your area code is Tacoma, right? I had a friend stationed there after college."

I tried to text Breann again. Lucas yelled into the phone.

"Stop what you are doing! Listen to what you need to know to keep yourself alive! I can see everything you're doing!"

I turned 360 degrees, staring into every window. There were video cameras on every rooftop including my building. I slowly put the phone to my ear.

"Caleb, you are depending on others for your future. I can tell you how to save yourself. Knowing who the real enemy is, technology, not death, will keep you alive for a long time."

Now, I was mad. Getting lectured by a dispassionate creep was making me paranoid.

"Who are you? Where are you? and why in the hell do you care so little for the others?"

There was silence.

"Answer me Lucas, or whoever you are!"

I looked at the glare coming from the building to my left. I remembered that high rise belonged to a private jet leasing company headquartered in Seattle. I put the phone to my left side and raised my right hand like a salute to my eyes, trying to make put the silouette in the window. I put the phone back to my face.

"Is that you, Lucas."

He sighed and started to speak.

"Yes, Caleb. I walked over to the window. I've been watching you on a closed circuit tv inside this office. I'm in town for business. Now, do you want to talk on better terms?"

I never wanted to be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound more in my life.

"Yeah, go. I'm dying to know what you've got, Lucas. Literally."

The silouette moved away from the window.

"There were six. Two doctors named Connor Bulas and Anson Cluber developed robotic hearts that sent synapses to the brain and nervous systems.We're not all the same. The parts, the operations, the effects, were done in twos. Bruce and I were the first. We are the most alike. Lena and Clare are likewise. Thus making you and Breann the most related. The surgery you need can do more that save your life. It can extend it beyond your normal life expectancy. You need to pursue your own care and needs."

I started thinking that Lucas knew all of this because he had had the surgery. he wasn't sick and thus didn't care about the rest of us.

"Meet me in person, Lucas. Let's do this face to face, like men."

After more than 20 seconds of dead air, he spoke.

"I'll do it on one condition. Nothing is recorded, photographed, or put in Breann's newspaper or the internet. I don't want to be involved with the others. You agree and I'll give you Anson Cluber and Bruce Nolans."

I was dumbfounded by his demands. I played along.

"Deal. Name a place and time. I want to know where I come from."

This is another episode of the story I am writing. The other ones are here:
1) Synchronicity
10) Drown
11)  Toyed
12) Fever
17) Numb
18) Cage
23) Just
24) Called Out

Thank for reading.

Today's song is mostly atmospheric with a slight lyrical nod to the story where Michael Stipe says "he's alive, he's alive" and the opening riff and line "everybody here, comes from somewhere". I was listening to R.E.M.'s Accelerate album earlier (it's good, you should own it) and thought the music matched the sudden turn of events. Plus, I wanted to include something relatively new, this song's only three years old. Dig the guitar and get into the feel. It's R.E.M.'s Supernatural Superserious.


  1. Mezmorizing as always. You have a true talent for story telling.

  2. The elusive mystery characters surface, there's a medical twist, and one of my favorite bands under-appreciated albums referenced.

    Good stuff.

  3. Curiouser and curiouser... very intense.