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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Geek - Part 3 by Azriel Johnson

    The van was dark brown, similar to Angie’s hair.  Jakob slid into the middle seat behind the front bucket seats.  He sat behind his mom.
    Small talk filled our conversation as Angie drove.  Occasionally Angie would ask Jakob about his project for the scouts.  He would mutter something and Angie would look at me with a ‘boys will be boys’ look.
    We turned down a long driveway.  It was admittedly spooky.  I had never seen something so eerie.  I didn’t show my nervousness, but I definitely kept up my alert.

    Angie cut the engine and turned to me, “Our leader is a remarkable man.  He’s been all over the world.  He has backpacked across Europe three times.  The boys love him.”
    I didn’t really know what to say.  My credentials weren’t to shabby either.  I had been to over 100 countries in my career, but I couldn’t tell her that.  Right now I was Jimmy James, the geek who likes historical fiction.
    We exited the van and she said, “Jimmy, I want you to meet Tony Oldman, our scout leader.”
    Tony Oldman was a man about six inches taller than my height of five feet ten inches.  However he had the body of a weasel.  His hair was long, thick and shaggy brown.  He wore a goatee framing thin lips which upturned at the edges.  Most importantly, Tony Oldman was the Agency’s biggest target.
    I offered a hand.  “Hi!  My name is Jimmy James, it’s a pleasure.”
    Tony shook my hand tentatively.  He turned to Angie.  “Where is Jakob’s father?”
    “Oh, Rog, he’s out of town on some business, so I get Johnson family business today.”
    Tony half smiled.  “Well, let’s corral the troops.  Boys!  Let’s get inside, we’re about to start the meeting.”
    Angie and I followed Tony and his slinky walk into the house.  It was a manufactured home.  One floor.  It was huge inside.
    Jakob scampered off into the living room.  The boys sat on the blue plus carpet surrounded by three beefy men and Tony Oldman.  Angie led me into the dining room and we offered me bottled water with a squirt top.  I drank gratefully and while the boys were instructed on patriotism, Angie and I discussed a number of different historically relevant novels.
    I stood up to use the bathroom.  I washed my hands afterward.  As I exited the bathroom I was faced with Jakob.  He smiled as he held a hand behind his back.  I was curious.
    Jakob asked, “Mister James, could you get that plane from the top of the shelf?”
    It seemed like a reasonable request.  I turned my back and reached.  As my hand touched the die cast plane, I felt uneasy.  I turned back with plane in hand and was quick enough to block the knife little Jakob tried to shove into my body.
    Another boy ran at me with a knife and I threw the plane at his head.  The metal rang as it met his skull. The boy started crying.  Jakob slashed at me with his knife.  I blocked his attack and disarmed him.
    What the hell was going on?
    I walked into the kitchen that connected to the dining room brandishing the knife.
    “Okay!  Why am I being attacked by children with knives?”
    No answer came… Only gunshots….

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