Chuck's back! Flash Fiction Friday's back! Yep, we're gonna have some serious fun! The prompt? Well the danger of undeserved power... and well, I couldn't wait to get into this one.
Jarrad looked at his arms, noticing that all the hair on them had been burned off; his nails were black and had fallen off and a good part of his head was missing a lot of his hair.
“Oh... my fucking god... my hair.” He whispered turning to look in the mirror.
“Jarrad!” His mother’s voice drifted up from downstairs, “Are you hungry, hon? Thought you’d like a sandwich.”
He moved slowly to the doorway to his room, “Yeah, I’ll have one thanks – with everything.”
“See, I told you, he’s gonna be fine.” His father’s voice reassured her softly.
He tapped his index finger and thumb of his right hand together and a light humming sounded from the air between them.
No, nothing was ever going to be fine about him ever again.
He had to get back into playing for the team again – back out onto the field again – to get his form back. Jarrod looked around his room at his huge shelf of trophies and ribbons which he had been getting from his sporting achievements. Now... with this new thing he had – this new ability – he could do anything he wanted.
The following week at school, he felt as though everyone was staring at him. The girls who had been fawning over him only weeks before, were watching him as though he was going to explode.
They stared at his hands – his nails – as they were still a little charred and growing back. Jarrod needed to wear bandages around his fingers to protect the nail beds. His hair was never going to be the lovely, chestnut curls the girls loved to touch again. There was always going to be that jagged scar that marred its way from the crown of his head, down his neck and under his shirt, leaving a spider web of burns under his skin – destroying nerves endings he was constantly trying to work back into order.
Looking over at the cheerleaders, he saw them all turn away – all but one: Sherry. She was his girl. She walked over as a few of them told her to leave him alone, grabbed at her and she shoved them away, “Hey stranger.”
He looked down at her, “Am I still your honey?”
“Of course.” She reached up and touched his cheek gently as tears pricked her eyes, “I just don’t know what’s gonna hurt you and what won’t.”
He leaned against his locker, closing the door, “Sherry, honey, everything hurts. And I’ve lost most of the sight out of my left eye.”
“What happened out there?”
“Well you saw it.” He shouldered his school port as the bell rang and he winced, “Damn, did that bell get louder.”
“No... oh your hearing is more sensitive?”
He took her hand gently, then let go, “I’ve found out something about me which has freaked me out.”
“I’ve got a free period if you want to talk.”
He looked at her, not knowing if she was ... “Why didn’t you visit me in hospital?”
“I tried. They wouldn’t let me near you.” Sherry pulled out of her bag an envelope which looked worn, as though it had been carried everywhere with her, “I wanted to bring this to you, but...” she shrugged.
They stood in the empty hall as he opened the envelope, and pulled out the card, read it and smiled, “I love you too.” He looked around, “I do want to talk to you, so let’s go for a soda.” He hesitated in touching her again, and let her in front of him as they walked out of the building.
The following weekend was the play-offs.
Jarrod was on the bench for the first time in his life.
The coach didn’t want him out on the field too soon – well not so soon out of hospital.
But Jarrod was ready... he wanted in on that game.
He held his helmet by the facemask, swinging the helmet into his right hand – slap-slap – impatiently. Jarrod wanted in on this game so badly, he didn’t want to wait any longer.
Picking out one of the guys on the team who had been fumbling since the first quarter, he watched him. He slapped his helmet hard with his right hand – and the fumbling guy tripped and fell, losing the ball to the other team.
The coach had no idea what was going on.
The crowd was on their feet.
Sherry turned from the cheer squad and looked at him as she watched him stomp his foot, staring at the weak player. She watched his right hand slap his helmet again as a thunder clap split the air and the fumbling player went down in a heap on the field.
Both teams surrounded the fallen player as Jarrod simply sat there looking onto the ground; knowing he’d be called up. The medics were called out there with a stretcher and they pulled the guy from the grounds, to a waiting ambulance.
Sherry glared at Jarrod who smiled as the coach patted him on the shoulder, “Get out there, boy! Your turn, show us what you have!”
He shoved his helmet on, pushed his mouth guard in and clipped up as he jogged out onto the field; and the game continued on. Jarrod was going to rule this game over everyone who got in his way.
Sherry waited until all of the guys had left the locker room before walking in and seeing her man with a towel around his waist – seeing his scars spidering all over his body.
He half-turned, “What do you want, Sherry?”
“I saw you cause that thunderclap. You told me about your ability.” She said, “I remember when it happened to you.”
He pulled his towel off and stood there fully nude in front of her. There wasn’t anything he had she hadn’t already seen, “So? Whatcha gonna do? If you tell, who’s gonna believe you?”
“That’s just the thing.” She turned toward the door, “How do you think you got struck by lightning in the first place?”
Jarrod frowned, “I was...”
“We were at a fair ground, during the peak time.” She grinned, “I knew you cheated on me last year; and ... well... I never thought you’d turn the ability against me or the kids here at school.”
She stood at the door, “Did it ever go through your mind that I was trying to kill you?”