Sunday, June 17, 2012

Father's Day Flash Fiction

The sirens let loose their screaming choruses, echoing up and down the deserted industrial hallways.  Red angry lights spun and danced, alerting no one but the ghosts of the disturbance.  No one except the thief that is, and he was well aware of his actions.

Dr. Strankelmund stood before the glass case containing the rare ore he needed to complete his latest doomsday device.  Suspended in an anti-gravity chamber, it floated, spinning in lazy, docile loops.  The sirens and the lights were giving him a headache.  He pressed a button on a remote and the sound gave one last choking blast and silenced.  He smiled as he keyed in the code that raised the glass.  He pulled his gloves tight, produced a small glass container, and gently placed the ore inside.

“Put the ore down, doctor.”

The doctor sneered.

Defender of the weak, champion for the championless, and all around goody-goody, the Green Knight, stood before him.  His gleaming, green, crusades-esque helmet caught the warning lights’ color and reflected it back in an especially awful way.

“You should really just leave.  Between your gaudy costume and this room's red lights, it looks like Christmas vomited.”

“Very kind of you to be concerned with my appearance, but the fact remains, you’re taking something that doesn’t belong to you.”

Dr. Strankelmund zipped his bag up with a flourish and stuck his nose in the air.  “And what if I am?  This ore is going to help me in ways you can’t even imagine!  You have no idea the breakthroughs I’m about to achieve in the name of science.”

“Mad science.”

Strankelmund shrugged.  “You say that like it’s a bad thing.  If they taught my brand of science in schools, I’m sure our children’s test scores wouldn’t be so pathetic.”

“Put the ore back!”

“Make me.”

Strankelmund lowered himself into a crouching position, extending his arms and legs into a defensive stance.  He was still in fairly good shape, despite his gray temples and salt-and-peppery beard.

The Green Knight let out a harsh bark of laughter and lowered himself into a similar stance.

“You want some of this, old man?” he sneered.

“Shouldn’t you be cramming for your Chemistry final or something?”

“Shows what you know.  Finals were last month.”

They charged at each other.  Strankelmund threw a punch at the Green Knight’s face.  The Green Knight blocked and countered with a knee to the stomach, knocking the wind out of the doctor, who spun away whipping his fist back and slamming into the Green Knight’s neck.  The Green Knight dropped.  Strankelmund smirked and turned to flee, but something caught his foot.  He flopped to the floor with a crack, his teeth clacking together.

The Green Knight, still on the ground, began dragging Strankellmund backward by his legs. Strankelmund began kicking at his chest and face.  Both men began scrambling for the duffel bag to reclaim the rare ore.  Strankelmund had it in his grasp for a moment before the Green Knight dove onto him, knocking him away.

The two men wrestled on the ground, straining, sweating, grunting, and suddenly, the doctor began to chuckle.  “You’ve gotten better.  Taking lessons?”

Panting, the Green Knight replied, “There’s a MMA gym that’s been offering lessons on special.”

“It shows.  You’ve had pretty good form so far.  But you could stand for a few more pointers.”

“Oh yeah?  Why do you say that?”

“You’re leaving your right side open.”  He drove his knee into the Green Knight’s side.

The hero let out a gasp and rolled away, curling into a ball.  Strankelmund cackled and snatched up the duffel bag, jogging out the door.  He made his way down the hall, straining for the sounds of any police or security that may have finally arrived.  That damned Green Knight had wasted precious time.

He found the stairs and began sprinting up them, skipping every other step.  Sweat poured down his face, stinging his eyes.  He stopped halfway up, doubled over and panting.  When he finally burs through the door, he stared straight into the eyes of the Green Knight, who had his Chivalric Negotiator, an emerald green stun gun, aimed at the doctor’s chest.

“Hey there.”

Strankelmund let out an airy laugh and leaned against the wall.  “How’d you get up here?”

“The other staircase.”

From below, the cacophony of sirens told him the police were surrounding the building.  The doctor turned his attention back to the Green Knight.

“You’ve got a shiner.  I guess I clocked you good.”

The Knight reached up and touched his right eye, smirking.  

“Lucky shot,” he muttered.  “Besides, your lip looks like someone over-inflated your face.”

The doctor let out a laugh and sighed.  “So, how is this going to work.  Are you going to take me down there to them or make them come up here to you?  Or are you just gonna tie me up and disappear like that other, darker knight we all know and love.”

The Green Knight chuckled.  “That guy can be such a dick, can’t he?”

They both laughed.  As the laughter tapered off, they stood for a moment, regarding each other.  The Green Knight’s brow furrowed for a moment before he let out a sight and stepped aside, gesturing for Strankelmund to go through.

The doctor was stunned “Are you serious?”

“Go, before I change my mind.”

Strankelmund took a quick glance over his shoulder and hustled over to the edge of the roof.  He dug around in his duffel bag and produced a little remote with a flashing red button on it.  He pressed the button and a floating, motorcycle-like craft came crashing out of the trees.  He tightened the duffel bag around his person and hopped on.  Before he raced off, he looked back over at the Green Knight.

“Hey, son?  Call your mother!  She misses you!”

With that, he throttled the handlebars and raced off into the night.

The Green Knight sighed.  “Happy Father’s Day, Dad.”