Purifiers

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I never understood that whole “I’m a smoker so I throw my trash at your feet” kinda thing. Sure, those people are obviously more entitled than me, they drive that new Fusion with the tinted windows rolled down blasting their hip hop and rap. I never understood where we, humans, got the idea that we were better than everything else. So here I am, Kenny Orlender, doing my hardest.

I asked a person a question the other day. “Yo Harry, what’s the most important thing in your life?” He replied by saying what any ignorant seventeen year old would say, “The women.”

Needless to say, I started asking others the exact same question. I got answers as far off as a good bucket of popcorn all the way to a week out of town. Now don’t get me wrong, those are all important things, for seven bucks my popcorn better be extra buttered and have some salt on there. However I think everyone missed what’s really important.

I’m not a Harvard graduate, so I really don’t know where these big shots got all their opinions from, sure as hell wasn’t from Al Gore. You hear those stories all the time, or at least see the product of one. “See that nice pretty river rolling down the Rocky Mountains? Yeah, we’re ganna’ dam it up; maybe alter its course a little. Nothin’ big right?”

Wrong. So here I have to come along, doing the thing I do best. Purify.

Now this process is hard to explain, so bear with me here. It’s not, I go make a cardboard neon sign and protest outside a major corporate door. Hell, it’s not I go pick up trash around a neighborhood river where everyone dumps their 7-11 nacho box. No, it’s a job like anyone else does, except I’m willing to bet mine is worse.

I bleed. And not just a little. We’re talking bleeding that would make a blood bank drive close doors. So what do I bleed for? I take in infections and diseases, charred earth caused by disasters, I even take in the average sprained ankle. It is all about balance essentially. One day I may help heal an oil spill off the coast, and the next I may walk into a hospital and save a young person’s life by taking away their sickness into myself.

See here’s a Harvard lesson for all of you educated people or whatnot that forget your basics. Mother Nature runs her own course. Now under normal circumstances, she rides in her car with the coast button set at 25mph. Now at the end of her course, she hits the reset button, we saw it once already with the dinosaurs. To blatantly put it, Mother Nature balances herself out when everything goes her way.

Now we humans here have kinda lost our way and things are not going according to plan. See we’re that annoying passenger you get forced into taking out to lunch because he’s friends with your other friend. Except unlike that annoying passenger who just tells those bad jokes we’ve all heard a million times, we take our feet and smash down on the gas pedal. We accelerate Mother Nature’s natural process. Though it is severe, it really isn’t something that we can label 2012.

So to explain it a little better, I press down on the break peddle while all of you are hitting the gas pedal.

It’s not fun, considering my kind are dwindling. There used to be a couple thousand of us spread throughout the planet. Now though, I think I’m the last one in the western Americas. But let’s not get ahead here.

Purifiers, as we normally call ourselves, normally begin feeling this keen sting when we’re around four. Maybe its sooner, but let’s face it, four is my memory cut off. At four, headaches constantly pound our skull like the drummer of Godsmack hits his overpriced cylinders. When a major catastrophe hits like an oil spill or Katrina, it takes all of our focus just to stay on our shaky legs and feet.

So here we are back at the answer to the million dollar question; it’s Earth. Earth should be the most important thing. Let’s face it, if Earth goes down what are you, the average joe gonna’ do? Build a space ship and fly your arse to Mars or Pluto? Now-
“Kenny, would you mind sharing with the class what is so important that you ignore my lecture?”

Drats. Margaret; was calling me out of my wandering mind. She is a history teacher, and all that crap about calling them Mrs. Or Mr. Whatnot is so one sided. I mean if I have to call her Mrs. Last name, then why doesn’t she have to call me Mr. Orlender? Uh oh, I was losing focus again and she had asked me a question.

I sat in the back right corner of the bland white room. No, bland was an understatement, it was a history room that was probably around longer than some of the history posters taped around the room. White paint was chipped, and in some places it was turning brown, talk about saving money for that turf football field outside. The text books we were reading even had some discrepancies.

There were thirty or so fellow students in the room, and all sixty of their eyes were looking straight at me. I gave my best crooked smile that clearly stated, I’m about to say something real stupid. I do that face a lot, it’s just when you deal with the problems I do, patience goes right out the window with manners.
“Why yes Margaret I don’t mind sharing what was on my mind.” I paused, running my hand through my black hair that was rather warm because the sun had been sitting on it for the past ninety minutes. “I was sitting here, debating how to sweep her off her feet. See it’s a long story really. That beautiful young woman there.” I pointed to the girl I had a crush on for the past two years. “Has a boyfriend already. Plays football, has a car, and has this Robert Downy Jr haircut. That’s a lot for a guy like me to contend with. So I decided I was gonna do something real drastic. So I was waiting for you to take notice of my obvious disinterest.”

Margaret was pissed. If I was a good artist, I wouldn’t have to draw the steam coming from her ears, it was already there. The girl I had a crush on still wore that confused face like “Oh my god is this really happening to me. Should I be happy or mad?”

I bulldozed my way past both of them while laughter exploded throughout the room.

See I can do some cool stuff, comes with the whole territory of being who I am. So I stood up and put my hands behind my back. Turning to the girl I liked, I made my face serious and my voice calm. “Breana, would you like to go to prom with me?” It was good I was in the back of the room; otherwise everyone would have seen a red rose spring into my hand. Nature can be pretty cool sometimes, very situational.
“This is for you.” I produced the red rose that looked like it came from a hallmark movie and began to walk over to her.

Breana’s cheeks were as red as the crimson rose I was going to give her. She stood up and faced me as I entered her row. A smile crept across her face as I came within a foot of her. I knew how to keep the excitement.
“Listen.” I took on a real quiet voice just to make everyone lean in on their seats. “I know I’m not the best guy in the school. I would just like to give it a shot. I am not the kind of guy that lets a striking woman walk out the door without trying. You’re worth the effort. So let me buy you dinner and take you to the dance that I know you’ve never gone to.” I let her gingerly grab the rose and she lifted it to her nose in that ever so cute Hollywood movie kinda way.
“Alright Kenny. Yes. I’ll go with you.”

The class clapped, well Margaret didn’t but she was busy destroying her stress ball. I was surprised when Breana threw her arms around me and gave a tight hug. I returned the hug and lifted her five foot six frame off the floor. It’s all about the effects.
“Get out! Just get out! Expect a referral tomorrow morning.” Margaret was no longer holding her stress ball.”Suspension if I can swing it.”

Times up. Never really liked teachers. There were a few exceptions, but hey, I just have to deal. “Alright Margaret, I’ll leave. And don’t worry, I already read the Napoleonic Era chapter, so I should be ready for that chapter test next Tuesday.” By the time I finished my sentence, I already had my back pack on and was heading for the door. I gave Breana a wink and told her that I’d call her later that night, which only made Margaret begin to grab her frilly brown bunch of hair.

I always have the best timing; or the worse depending who you ask. As soon as I was heading out the side school mint doors, I felt as if someone had surgically cut open my skull without having the respect to knock me out first. My head swam as realization came over me that this wasn’t a normal occurrence of nature, but something worse. See how nature has that whole balance thing, well same thing applies to us purifiers. Corruptors, destroyers, lets just say they do everything they can to kill as many as they can.

So getting a date with a cute girl, pissing off a teacher, and getting my newest assignment of the month; I’m the king of multitasking.

A wave just hit California, and it was conjured.





***




I sped down the exit lane of El Dorado, cutting off a Toyota pickup truck that was driving as fast as an eighty year old grandma who couldn’t see the exit sign. The morning California sun beat down on the blue rental Hyundai Accent I was driving. Under the false name of Stan Gelborni the trip to California had been speedy and luxurious. During the flight I had gone over my personal check lists for security, severity, and stability.

Calls caused my phone to die twice already, as the people in high places kept trying to figure out the whole mess; too bad they were all asking me what was going on. I could only tell them so much.

A wave hit California. A Corruptor had conjured it, no I don’t know who they are. I am on my way to the site to gather more Intel. I am confident the conjurer is still in the state.

My superior, A Purifier as old as Catcher in the Rye who oversaw all activities in the America’s. had given me very little above the plane ticket and an account info to be billed for all my expenses. Though to be honest I preferred it that way, working alone was my forte since I rarely played nice with others.

Slamming the gas, I sped my way through changing lights, racing the pink all the way down into the city of Sacramento. It was the furthest city from the ocean that any conjured wave could be maintained. Downtown would be the most likely place to hole up as a Corruptor; at least that’s what I would do.

As I turned the car onto 16th street, I began to take in the energies around me. It was a terribly painful progress, and I found myself parking in the last free spot of a pay lot before the pain overcame my ability to focus. Through all the pain however, there was no mistaking the one anomaly. Four blocks away, nestled on the upper level of a three star hotel, a clear dead zone.

Fear crept into my head momentarily, as my mind worked through what such a zone could mean. “Arrogant b****** actually did choose the capital as his summoning home.” I mumbled to myself as I stepped out of the car and paid for three hours.

I slowly made my way toward the hotel, canvassing the area for suspicions and possible escape routes if things went south. Dead zones normally meant one thing. When conjuring, an immense amount of energy is expelled out, which in turn created the desired effect with molding and stability. After the desired effect though, the conjurer has to regain all of his strength. There is only two ways to do such a thing.

Purifiers tend to regain their strength through conditioning and meditation, only taking in the loose energies. Corruptors though tend to take the other approach. They take in everything. When you kill someone a massive amount of energy can be taken, especially after extreme disasters. Where the person takes in all that energy, it begins to become a dead zone.

Stepping into the main lobby, I slip through crowds bumping more than one agitated man along the way. Above me, I still feel the keen presence of the dead zone, and before I know it im standing in a crowded elevator hitting the eighth floor.

Luckily no one gets off on the eighth floor, and I walk down the deserted hallway. Decorative tables with plastic flowers sit every fifteen feet or so, and light fixtures give the hall a brightness 24/7. Counting, I pass five doors before I stop. As clear as day, energies ripple through the cracks and door itself. I lightly try the handle, seeing that it is locked. Two options pass through my head, burst in like a boss, or idle by and wait until he leaves before I make a move.

With a deep breath and a step back to gather some energy around me, I throw my right shoulder into the door forcing massive amounts of energy into the lock. The door gives with the weight and I lunge into the room, forcing myself to roll. As I come out of the roll, I stand roughly five feet away from a pale skinned man that would likely lose an arm wrestle with a skeleton. So the fight begins.





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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

Paul said...
Apr. 8, 2011 at 8:26 am
I enjoyed the article it was enlighting.  The author captivated the reader with is detailed description.  Good job!!!!
 
Bosco said...
Apr. 4, 2011 at 11:57 am
Nice - would like to hear more of the story!  Good character - right amount of action.
 
Sheba said...
Mar. 31, 2011 at 2:28 pm
Very good article - makes you think.
 
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