Lawrence Gustafsen looked at the monitor on his desk. He watched the standard medical read outs as they blipped, beeped, and pulsated across the screen. Each collection of four read outs were labeled with a name across the top. The bottom right name appeared in a bolded font and gold in color. The others were the standard white and regular sized fonts.
“You must be the new guy.” A lanky individual leaned in to shake Lawrence’s hand. “I’m Karl Roberts. What’s your mode?”
Standing and shaking the proffered hand. “I’m Lawrence, or Larry if you prefer. Mode?”
“Mode of travel. I’m a runner or speedster.”
Lawrence scanned the six foot tall man. The lean muscles stood out with the form fitting uniform they all wore. Lawrence noticed the orange goggles cocked back on Karl’s head.
“I’m a teleporter.” Lawrence looked at his own uniform and noticed there was no muscle definition at all. Just the beach ball sized gut that was kept from sagging by the spandex shirt squeezing it back into his torso. He also saw that the area around his inner thigh was becoming shinny. He only had the uniform three days, but put it on when he got it and walked around his house in it. I was told they have a gym here. Maybe I should use it.
“Casey over there,” Karl pointed to another station where a well-proportioned woman with a waist length cape stood. “She is a flier.” Karl leaned in and changed to a stage whisper. “I have heard say she can hit mach three!” He nodded and tilted his head as he stood up.
Lawrence glanced at the brunette’s back. His lips silently said wow, then he looked back at Karl.
“Well, we should get back to the monitors.” Karl waved then moved to his station.
Lawrence waved, sat down, then spun his chair around to put the monitors in view. After a few seconds, his hand approached the danish on his desk. He chewed into it, making it disappear in three bites. Sucking the cold, overly sweet, light colored coffee through a straw, he watched the message flash on his screen.
Telestic is on mission!
Lawrence compared that name to the names on the medical monitors on his screen. The gold member had the name Telestic. Great! First day and I get this!
His mind replayed the lectures he had in training for this position. Mr. Vincint, the instructor, said, “If the alarms are blinking, you need to be getting locations. If the alarms are red, you need to be getting there.”
A quick scan showed an elevated heart rate, breathing rate was up, and adrenaline was high. No flashing yet.
Lawrence took another pull from his cold coffee as he tapped in a code into the computer. The map displayed on his second screen and a dot labeled Telestic appeared. The distance number read thirty-five.
Hmmm…not that far. I can get there in two, maybe three hops.
With his eyes fixed on the medical read outs, Lawrence reached into the cooler he kept at his feet. He thumbed open the foot long cardboard box and stuffed two palm sized, white powder covered donuts into his mouth. The powder left residue on his fingers and lips. The next two donuts made the ring bigger. Within a few seconds the box was empty, and Lawrence flipped it into the trashcan, never taking his eyes off the screen. He glanced down at his coffee bottle when it made the gurgle noise of empty.
BEEP BEEP BEEP!
Lawrence’s eyes darted to the screen. A picture of Telestic displayed on the screen. The cowled head had menacing blue eyes, long hair in a ponytail, and a sneer that sent a shiver over Lawrence. Telestic’s vitals spiked and blinked red. “Shit!” White dust and donut particles sprayed across his desk, keyboard, and onto the monitor.
Lawrence squeezed his eyes shut. He opened them, seeing the streets, traffic lights, and moving cars below. The sudden feeling of falling kicked in. His arms and legs flailed. He squeezed his eyes shut again.
The wooden floor he stood on had several holes, and he made out dark shapes in the dim light. A quick flash of dark blue light shone in front of him twenty yards away. Lawrence felt something in his hand. He shifted his head and looked at the unopened bottle of soda. He flung it to the ground. “Damn it!”
Moving to where the light came from, he touched the activation button on his belt. A snap hiss and the translucent grey force field was in place. He kept moving. Several more feet and he tripped over something. The movement was enough to cause him to slide across the litter strewn floor. He stopped at a lump with the same color scheme of his client. His wrist panel pinged, and he read Client Telestic Found. Shaking the lump, Lawrence huffed out the prepared line. “Telestic, I am your Medivac. I will transport you out of here and to one of our facilities.”
“Behind…” Telestic mumbled the rest as she rolled away from Lawrence.
The large shadow crossing over him was the last warning he had.
Two garbage can sized fists were careening towards him.
Lawrence blinked and reappeared several feet on the other side of Telestic. Huffing and puffing, Lawrence scrambled for his ward.
Laying face up, Telestic winced when Lawrence touched her. “You’re fat.”
“I teleport, too.” Lawrence shook his head. What did I think would happen?
The behemoth resituated and charged towards the two figures. Planting a foot, he cocked the other one back and swung it forward.
Lawrence reached and focus on a spot behind the creature. He and Telestic, still lying down, appeared across the way. The creature, however, kicked hard enough to cause both feet to fly up, sending him into the hard floor.
“Get us out of here! Now!” Telestic yelled into Lawrence’s face as she grabbed onto him.
Sealing his eyes, Lawrence focused on the sign with the address of his destination. Fingers biting into his arm and he paused.
“Ahhhhhhh!!” Lawrence felt his insides fry and saw red as his whole body spasmed.
“You ain’t goin’ no where lady.” Voltaik stood behind the pair, a hand still smoking. “We was paid to take you out, and being the consummate professionals, that’s what we’re gonna do.”
“Fat kid. Get up.” Telestic pushed on Lawrence, prodding him into action. “I’m out of mana-energy to cast anything but simple spells.”
“That hurt.” Lawrence’s tongue felt thick, and he winced as he struggled from the woman he was draped over. He blinked to refocus his eyes. “What? There are two of them?”
“No shit, tubby.” Telestic go to an elbow with a grunt and wince. “Get us the fuck out of here.”
The growl from the man-rock snagged their attention. At the same time, a light from where Voltaik stood turned their heads.
Lawrence jerked his arms out, pointing towards the attackers. A dark sphere appeared around hand.
A large boulder shaped fist dashed into one sphere and out the other. The dark orange blast from Voltaic imitated the fist, but in the opposite direction. Both attacks connected, but with the assassins, leaving Telestic and Lawrence untouched.
Telestic arched an eyebrow and mouthed a silent whoa.
The assassins sprawled to the ground.
Lawrence eyeballed a pile of refuse across the way and extended a hand towards it. A dark blue circle descended on the large metal barrels and single crate. With his other hand he pointed at Voltaic. The crate appeared over the prone form of the electric wielding assassin, then crashed down on the unsuspecting blaster. Lawrence jerked his hand towards the other brute and the barrels collided with the assassin’s head, making a ringing noise.
Keeping his hands pointed at the downed assassins, Lawrence squeezed his eyes shut. A sphere enveloped the attackers, and they vanished.
With a quick glance at Telestic, Lawrence said, “Now we can go.” Lawrence snapped his eyes shut, grabbed Telestic, and focussed on his destination.
Lawrence, along with Telestic, appeared in the emergency room hallway.
“Medivac EMT Lawrence Gustafsen, number five eight seven one three nine four five seven. Dropping off one wounded gold account member Telestic.” Two orderlies wheeled a gurney towards the tight costumed man holding the drooping woman. In a fluid motion, Lawrence scooped up the athletic woman and placed her on the rolling bed.
A nurse approached. “We acknowledge your delivery.” Lawrence rendered a casual salute and vanished.
Lawrence finished his lunch of a large bowl of spaghetti, a two liter bottle of soda, and half a chocolate cream pie. As he left the break room, he tapped his wrist panel to signal his lunch break ended. A message flashed across the screen. IN MY OFFICE! NOW!
The heat dashed to his face, and sweat appeared on his forehead. Lawrence turned away from his route to his desk and headed for his boss’ office.
Lawrence gulped as he approached the opened door. “Gustafsen! Get in here!” A loud banging of fist on desk punctuated the air, and the sweat on Lawrence’s head doubled in volume.
Lawrence entered, closing the door behind him. He turned his head in quick jerks as he took in the small office. His fingers knotted themselves as he got closer to Mr. Danforth.
“Sit down, Lawrence.” Mr. Danforth slid a manila folder across his empty desk top.
“This is your file.” Mr. Danforth opened the file, laying it flat. “Normally, this is all that is in there for new hires. Their job description, signed. Their emergency contacts, and some other basic information. Typically, this should be four sheets of paper. Four!” Mr. Danforth thrust a hamhock sized hand with four meaty fingers extended.
Lawrence inhaled, then swallowed. He held his mouth open as the small breathes passed over his lips.
“But you have to be different.” Mr. Danforth’s voice dropped in pitch. “Difficult.” He growled, “Complicated.”
Mr. Danforth reached for a packet. “I got three rules for all of you. You follow these three, and the company’s rules don’t matter as far as I’m concerned. One, don’t die. It’s a lot of paperwork and it takes forever.”
Mr. Danforth divided the packet into three piles. “Two, upgrade the client. In other words, make a sale. It brings in money. In the end that is all that matters.”
“Three, don’t complicate things.”
Mr. Danforth pulled a pile he had on his desk. “This is your statement.” Several pieces of stapled paper landed on Lawrence’s folder. “This is Telestic’s statement.” Even more paper slapped onto the folder. “This is Voltaik and Crag’s statement, along with the arresting officer’s report.” This stack, looking close to an inch deep, slapped onto the folder and blew Lawrence’s hair.
A sausage sized finger backed by a thick fist pointed at Lawrence. “You’re an EMT and a Transporter. Not a hero. You are not supposed to fight back. Next time, activate your force-field belt and get to your client. If you go off book again, I’m going to personally walk your fat ass out the front door.”
I’m not fired. A silent sigh of relief escaped Lawrence.
Mr. Danforth’s face split into a large grin. “By the way, great work. Telestic renewed her contract and referred three others, who also choose the gold level membership. You get a bonus for that.”
Lawrence’s eyes widened and his mouth hung slack. “Thanks!” He started for the door.
“Oh, yeah. Telestic asked to have you permanently assigned as her transport.”
“Really!?” Lawrence’s face turned as red as his uniform. Mr. Danforth nodded.
At his desk, Lawrence noted the email notification. A quick click and it was on screen.
Thanks for transporting me. I know I was quite brusque with you and even downright rude. For this, I apologize. It was unprofessional and very mean. I hope you accept it, but will understand if you do not.
You may have heard that I requested you as my permanent transport. Knowing there is someone like you to rescue me when I need it is comforting.
Additionally, you teleported those two assassins close to the S.W.A.T. van. They managed to secure them and take them to the incarceration facility. There is a reward for their capture, and I have ensured that you get it.
Thank you once again,