The Timekeeper

July 29, 2016
  "Listen," I say to the shadows. "I don't want any trouble, I don't want anybody to get hurt." I glance at the shadowy figures. My mind is racing, my heart beating faster, adrenalin flowing throughout my body.
  I'm alone on this pier overlooking the ocean; I don't even remember how I got here. I stare out at the dark cold waves that lap furiously against the old wooden planks of the fishing pier. It's cold and dark outside. Besides the overcast moon, the only other thing to illuminate the darkness is a small streetlamp way behind the figures. I don't need the light, I can see through the dark.
  The two figures step out of the shadows and into the moon's sickly pale light. The first figure I see is smoking a thick cigar with a double-barreled shotgun lazily slung over his shoulder. He looks like an old school monster; even his black suit and cream-colored tie match the description of a stereotypic 1920s mobster. His pal is wearing a black suit and tie while carrying a AK-74 riffle around his shoulders. I think black tie guy scares me the most.
  Shotgun guy extinguishes his cigar by throwing it over the pier and slides a slug into his riffle. "Well you know that you're going to get trouble, don’t ya? You people can't expect anything but trouble." I'd be disappointed if he didn't have a New York accent.
  "Well you know who I am then," I say with a beaming sense of pride. "Word travels fast doesn't it? So you're here to what? Kill me? Wound me and take me to your leaders?"
  Black tie steps in and cracks his knuckles. His words have a little twinge of a Russian accent. "Preferably take you back to the Navigator, but killing you would be okay too. I'm up for anything."
  I can feel the power racing through my veins, filling me with strength and making my flaws vanish. "You're not going to take me alive. You think your bullets can harm me? I thought you people were smarter than that."
  Shotgun man levels his shotgun to my head and fires once. I blink twice and time slows down to a crawl. I see the men almost frozen in place as the bullet slogs through time and air to find me. It looks like it's traveling through thick clear Jell-O. I take a step out of the way and smirk. This is what I do. I am the Timekeeper.
  I speed time back to its normal rate and watch as the bullet flies by me and hits a pole on the pier. Shotgun turns and fires again, I don't even have to step out of the way because his shot goes wide. I see the beam of a flashlight behind him and for a second it distracts me. Who could be on the pier this late at night? Black Tie fires at me and I barely have a second to slow time down and dodge the spray of bullets. I just move a couple of inches; they barely see me move. I speed time up again and see his bullets fly by me.
  "We'll kill you, Timekeeper!" The voice of Shotgun cries out as he stares at me. "You haven't seen anything yet. All we have to do is wait until your powers are depleted and then we'll fill you with lead. What do you-?"
  "Hey, leave the girl alone!" It's the voice of someone behind the figures. He has an unfamiliar accent, maybe it's from Louisiana, but I'm not sure. His dark hair is pulled up into an old Braves cap and he tosses a beat up fishing pole to the ground. His flashlight beam momentarily blinds me so I just stand blinking at the figures in front of me. "Leave her alone!"
  "Go away," I shout to him. He's obviously some stupid human boy trying to save the day. I always end up saving them.  
The boy ignores me and strolls right past the two figures and stands beside me. "Look now there's two of us, that's fairer right?"
  I look him directly in his dark eyes and shake my head. "You're an idiot. They're going to kill you. Go away or I'm going to have to risk my life to save you. What do you want anyways?"
  "I have to save the damsel in distress, it's part of my chivalry. Besides, I live for adventure and adventure lives for me." He points to Black Tie and puts up his fists. "I'm just warning you that I will cry if you hurt me and you'll feel extremely guilty afterward."
  Black Tie stares at me as if to ask, "are you kidding me? This is your backup?" I nod, "I know, stupid humans. When will they learn?"
  "I'll fight Russia over here, you take New York." The boy starts to swing his fist at Black Tie's face. His fist never connects with anything because Black Tie crushes it in his clutch. The boy screeches in pain while holding his obviously broken hand against his chest. The two figures drop their humanlike shape for their real form and toss their weapons into the ocean.
  The boy scuttles back and stares in fear. "What-" He's cut off by the cry of the monster in front of us. It's grown larger than a garbage truck, its skin is rough and a dark ebony, its once human teeth are pointed down into sharpened fangs, and its eyes glow a fluorescent green. I'm probably just imagining things, but I think I see a smile on both of its heads.
  I sigh angrily and press a hand against my forehead. "Now see what you did? Now you went and made them change into a dragon. I was completely in control and then like always a stupid human steps in the way. This is the third time this has happened! The human always gets eaten and then I'm left feeling guilty!"
  "What is going on?" The boy screams as he jumps back to avoid the clawed mitt of the two headed dragon. "What the heck is going on! What are you?"
  I slow time a little just so I can give him a confused look. I know that it's stupid to waste my energy on such trivial matters but I seriously cannot believe him. "So you're being attacked by a two-headed dragon and you're asking what I am?"
  "Okay then, what is that?" He gets pushed into me and brings me down to the floor with his bulky mass on top of me. I can barely slow time to push him away and avoid being eaten alive. "I am so confused at what's going on!"
  "That is a dragon," I yell back to him.  "Now that we're all acquainted, I'm going back to our battle."
  I grab a decaying piece of pier and sling it towards the nearest head that snaps its jaw closed next to my face. My long black hair falls out of a loose ponytail and into my face preventing me from seeing the claws that slice cleanly through the flesh on my calf. It hurts but I've felt pain worse than this. My pant leg rips open to expose bloody shredded skin. I curse and throw my hair back and hurl an old crab trap towards the head that reaches out to snap me in half. I can barely slow down time before the heads swing towards me and try to knock me into the mad waves. I manage to slip away and hobble back to where the boy still stares in shock.
  The dragon barrels towards us, reaching forward to slice the boy's head clean off his neck. I see it coming before the boy even bothers to turn around. I push him away and he falls into the middle of his tackle box. He yelps in pain from fishhooks and throws his rod over into the angry waves.
  I dive and run forward to where he stands and throw open his tackle box. My calf is on fire, but I push the pain away like time itself. "Distract it!" I shout to the boy as his eyes dart from the safety of land and then back to the dragon.
  He nods and starts to slowly walk away from me towards the other end of the pier. "Hey, let's just calm down and talk about our situation. We can talk man-to-dragon right?" The dragon looks at him like a housecat stares at a goldfish. Pondering if it should eat him first and then move on to me. It casts a glance over at me and turns back to the boy.
  There must be some sort of pointy thingy here! Fishermen usually carry knives around, sometimes filet knifes but usually some sort of pocketknife. What type of fisherman is this boy? He can't fight, he threw his rod into the ocean, and he doesn't carry a knife.
  I throw the tackle box across the pier in anger and suddenly see something shiny glint in the mess of lures and bait. "Bingo," I whisper as I see the pocketknife in a wooden and metal case. I hear a terrified screech and see the boy running but going nowhere, the dragon is herding him back towards me. They can kill two birds with one stone. They can kill the Timekeeper just like their leader, the Navigator, ordered and then they can eat the little twit that stood with her.
  I open the pocketknife and run forward towards the dragon as fast as my wounded leg will allow me. The boy screams at me to run the other way as I fly past him. I scream and slow down time. Everything is still, completely frozen. The dragon has its jaws frozen open and half of its body rearing in the air. I run faster until I'm directly in front of the beast. Time speeds up as I raise the pocketknife into the air. The dragon can't slow down so it impales itself in the chest with a flimsy pocketknife. 
  The dragon stumbles and shrieks in pain. "Timekeeper!" I watch as golden blood pours from the wound and it staggers though the guardrail and into the ocean. I hear a splash and see it sink through the water never to be seen again.
  I throw the pocketknife to the boy. He looks at me with a shocked expression as I wipe golden shiny blood off my hands. "What are you?"
  I push a dark strand of hair behind my ear. "I am the Timekeeper."

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