Part Five July 28, 2016
Body armour can never be too light or it bends and shifts from sword, axe, broken glass, or bullet attacks. Bent anything digging into your skin is very painful. Norm knew because of its weight most people could never move fluidly in his suit. But at fourteen there is always someone. Someone who doesn’t necessarily have bulging muscles but who is just as uncannily strong.
Grade Nine gym classes were mandatory so Norm feeling disgruntled beat everyone at push-ups, chin-ups and laps on the track. After class his gym teacher asked him to play on the junior team; Norm said No; the teacher who was also the coach asked and asked him until he finally agreed. The only stipulation Norm insisted on was that he played positions that didn’t require him to tackle anyone.
In practice no one could stop him. Students and adults started to sit in the grandstand to watch. He started to see a voluptuous amazon of a woman with long raven hair and wearing pink rimmed sunglasses in the shape of a heart in the seats every practice. On the hot days she wore white or yellow T-shirts stretched out by her large bosom. The T-shirts always had sayings like Watchin’ You, I’m A Lover And A Fighter. On cooler days she wore a white leather jacket with Love Ya written on the back in black studs. He could see the muscle definition of her legs through the tight fitting cobalt blue capris she always wore.
“Hey Norm,” the coach said, pulling him aside, after they had won the sixth game in a row. “I want to switch you to quarterback.”
“Okay,” Norm said. He didn’t mind switching positions as long as he didn’t have to tackle.
“Can you practice throwing so you don’t knock the players off their feet?”
“And, I need you to get a blood and urine sample. I’m sorry but other coaches are accusing you of taking muscle enhancement drugs. I can tell by how thin you are that’s it’s impossible but just to assure them.” The coach handed him a slip of paper. Follow these instructions and meet a Dr. Caligulass tomorrow at 3 p.m. in the school’s medical office.
Norm looked at the sheet. He was instructed to drink lots of water before he saw Dr. Caligulass. “You could ask me not to get a touchdown every time or just not throw to me,” Norm said.
The coach shrugged. “Kyle isn’t that good of a quarterback but he might be a great receiver.”
The next day Norm went to the head office at 2:45 p.m. He saw the very tall and buxom woman with the heart shaped sunglasses come in wearing a tight blue medical smock that left her cleavage completely uncovered. Her white stilettos made her a head taller than him. “Come with me,” she said with an exotic voice that reminded him of a warm summer day just as the sun was going down.
She passed him a vial. “I need you to pee in this sweetie,” she said, nodding towards a small bathroom in the medical room.
He was nervous and tried not to miss. The vial was nearly full when he finished. He sealed the vial and put it inside a Ziploc bag before he washed his hands.
“Now have a seat and put your left arm on the armrest,” Dr. Caligulass said pointing to a chair beside an adjustable bed. She leaned close to him so his eyes bulged at her open cleavage. “It will just take a moment,” she cooed wrapping surgical tubing around his upper arm and tying it. He watched as she pressed the needle of a long syringe against the underside of his lower arm. Her eyebrows knitted. She pushed again. “Who are your parents darling?” she asked with confusion in her voice.
“I don’t have a father,” he replied.
“Disappointing,” she said and he wasn’t sure if she meant she was disappointed that he didn’t have a father or that she couldn’t get the needle to puncture his skin. “Well, we’ll have to leave it at that darling. You can go.”
He glanced back and saw her put the Ziploc bag into her black Crossbody purse. Seemed strange for her to do that but he had to get to Joe’s store for 4 p.m.
After work he saw a red Citroen Aircross SUV parked in front of his apartment building. Inside he could hear his mother talking to a woman who sounded familiar and a man with a very soft, soothing voice. He followed the cigarette smoke to the kitchen where he saw his mother talking animatedly to Dr. Caligulass and a man whose back was turned to him. The man’s hair stood up from his head like white stalagmites.
“Norm has always been a healthy, good boy,” his mother said through drags of new cigarettes. She took a crystal wine glass and Norm noticed in the centre of the table a bottle of Inniskillin Riesling Ice Wine. “But he has no father, one day he just started growing inside my belly.”
The man turned his head towards Norm. His irises appeared to be white but Norm could see a very faint pink pigment. His long hooked nose barely extended farther than his jutting chin. “I need your blood so we can discover who your father is,” the man said with a soft voice as he smiled with blood red lips that seemed to spread too wide for his narrow face.
“Just give me a moment,” Norm said as he slipped into his room. Under his bed he took out the Helio Tablet Ms. Grady had given almost two years ago and typed Dr. Caligulass. The screen showed a half body picture of Dr. Caligulass but without her sunglasses on. Her cornflower blue eyes were wide and menacing as she smiled for the camera. Under her picture, written in red, he saw DANGEROUS. There was no other information.
Norm took his tablet with him as he stepped back into the kitchen. “Really have to go but we can discuss this later.”
“The thing about being extraordinary Normy, is people either want you on their side, or they want to get rid of you as competition.” The man said as he began to stand up. Norm dashed towards the front door. He felt fingers brush against his arm as he opened the door and fled. Terror made his heart pound. No one had almost caught him before!