Brothers, Part Two

Brothers, Part Two

A Story by Guardian
"

This is part two of the series. I have no idea how long this whole story is going to be and no clue when I will finally have time to finish it, but for now it's two parts. Enjoy!

"

Brothers

Part Two: Control

 

          “David! Johnny!” my mom called as I lay sprawled and weak on the bathroom floor. “Dinner in five minutes!”

          “Thanks mom,” David called, fighting the amusement that was scrawled across his face. “We’ll be out in a minute.” He pulled me upward, laughter wracking his body as he dragged me out of the bathroom and lifted me with a grunt on my bed. “You’re pathetic,” he laughed again, sitting on his own bed.

          I could feel my energy slowly returning. I flexed my fingers experimentally. They were stiff and sore, but I could move them. “You wouldn’t think it was so funny if it was happening to you,” I said stiffly. All I wanted to do was hit him across the head. “You get a cool ability, moving objects around. I’m a human battery.”

          “One that’s constantly ready to explode, it seems. I think I’ll go and wash up for dinner.”

          He got up and left the room, chuckling as he went. I pushed myself upward with a grunt, my muscles screaming out in protest. I tried to rise shakily to my feet but my knees buckled and I fell forward, sprawling on the floor. My head came to rest just an inch from the wall. “Damn,” I swore in frustration. I sighed and laid there with my head turned to the side, staring at an outlet a few inches away.

          I almost screamed when I felt the familiar feeling spreading through my body. My hair stood on end and it was as if I had an insatiable itch. The outlet glowed slightly and electricity began crackling out of it, leaping toward me and running over my skin. It seemed I was a magnet for electrical energy. I had become used to the unwelcome feeling as the energy sank into my skin and ran through my veins. It no longer brought pain, but it was uncomfortable nonetheless.

          I was relieved to feel the energy running through me. The aching in my muscles dwindled as electricity continued to leap from the outlet. I pushed myself upward and stood without trouble. Still, the electricity traced burning marks along the floor as it wrapped around my ankles and raced upward, across my body. I closed my eyes. I could feel the energy like a lifeline leading to the outlet. I concentrated, visualizing the stream of electricity as a string. I severed the connection and the power stopped spilling out of the plug.         

          As the last spark sank into my chest, I opened the door and walked cautiously down the hallway. A metal frame hung on one wall. I moved as far away as I could in the enclosed space. Despite my distance, a small trickle of power leapt from my chest and spilled into the frame. I felt weaker but it was nothing like the incident in the bathroom.

          I moved into the living room. My family was seated on our large sectional, TV trays in front of them as they watched some mindless sitcom. I walked cautiously into the kitchen. I was relieved to see two pizza boxes open on the far counter. I didn’t want to have to deal with silverware yet. I moved toward the cupboards, grabbed a plate and threw a couple of slices onto it. I moved into the living room and on the far side of the couch, farthest from the TV and stereo.

          “How was your day, honey?” my mom asked me. She smiled sweetly. Her dirty-blonde hair was pulled back in a bun and her dark brown eyes were identical to mine. She was dressed simply without any embellishment.

          “It was fine,” I said, glancing around nervously. “Uneventful.”

          My dad was leaning back in his recliner, his plate balanced precariously on the arm. He laughed at something on the TV, then turned toward David. “How about you, David?” He turned back to the TV without waiting for an answer, his grey eyes scanning the screen. He had short, messy brown hair much like mine.

          “It was interesting,” David began. “I was working on-“

          “Oh! Jonathan!” my mother said excitedly, interrupting David without a glance in his direction. She set her plate down and reached for a pile of mail on the coffee table. She shuffled through it and tossed a letter in my direction. “You won an award! You’re eligible for a scholarship. Isn’t that wonderful?”

          David had long since returned to his food without trying to share his story. I felt guilty, but at the same time, I never asked to get this much attention. If it were up to me, David would get all of the glory. “A scholarship?” I asked, pulling out the letter and scanning it quickly. “But this is out of state, Mom. I’m going to CSU, remember?”

          “Honey, I would love to have you close to home, but I don’t really think CSU is right for someone as smart and perfect as you. I think it’s perfect for someone like, David, but…” She shrugged and returned to her meal. David pushed himself off of the couch and disappeared down the hallway, his half-eaten meal left behind.

          “Oh, Jonathan,” my dad said, reluctantly tearing his eyes away from the TV. “Your mother and I are going to that couple’s retreat this weekend. We’ll be leaving early tomorrow morning and you’ll be on your own for the next couple of days. Keep an eye on David, ok?”

          “Dad, he’s seventeen. I think he can take care of himself.”

          “Look,” my mother said soberly. “You’ve always been more mature than him. We just don’t know what to think anymore. He’s lazy and we constantly have to remind him to keep his grades up. Just make sure he doesn’t do anything stupid, ok?”

          I heard a thump from the hallway. I sighed. “We’ll be fine. Have fun, you two.”

 

 

          Twenty minutes later I moved slowly down the hallway toward our room. I opened the door slowly, a slight bolt of electricity arcing from my hand to the doorknob. I broke the connection quickly, and shut the door, careful to touch only the wood. David was sitting on his bed, his brow furrowed and his arm extended. A pencil hung shakily in mid air above the desk.

          “Look, David,” I said pleadingly. He had heard every word mom had said and I could tell it had hurt him.

          The pencil crashed to the desk, point down, digging into the wood. “Shut up,” he said bitterly. “I’m used to you taking all of their attention. They hate me.” Random items began rising upward as David’s anger grew. “I’m their mistake. You’re the perfect one. You’re worthy of Harvard and Oxford and I’m the kind of person who could only go to CSU.”

          “You know I don’t ask for attention, David. I don’t want any of it.”

          “And yet you get it anyway. You’re on the Honor Roll, you have more friends than you can count who absolutely hang on your every word and Mom and Dad love you. I’m alone, Jonathan and I always have been.” He sank backward, leaning against the wall and closing his eyes. The floating objects fell to the floor, clattering against the parquet.”I don’t want to talk anymore.”

          “Well, at least they’ll be gone this weekend,” I said, laying on my bed and grabbing a nearby book. “We can use the time to get these things under control.”

          David just nodded. I shook my head and read, trying to forget all of the tension.

 

 

          I woke up early the next morning. I felt energized from my night of sleep and the electricity still running through my veins. I checked my watch. 6:45 Am. I got up and moved toward the bathroom. I stared at my reflection in the mirror. Nothing had changed physically. My hair though had become a static mess. It was tangled and stood up at odd angles. I tried to comb it into place, but it did nothing. Finally, I reached for the razor on the counter.

          I turned it on and could feel the electricity pulsing through the device. Some of it trickled out and splayed across my arm, but I no longer felt pain. I watched the energy, fascinated as it sank into my skin. I raised the razor to my head and began shaving. I was careful not to cut myself. I left only an inch of hair in place. I didn’t like my new reflection in the mirror, but I would get used to it eventually. It certainly looked better than it had before.

          I turned off the razor and the last sparks sank into my skin. I flipped off the light and wasn’t surprised to feel a small bit of energy leaping into my hand. At least there was no pain. I moved quietly through my bedroom, not wanting to wake David. I knew my parents had long since left. They were driving up to Boulder and it would take them several hours.

          I didn’t bother getting anything to eat. I went through the living room and outside onto the porch. I sat in a large wicker chair and leaned back, closing my eyes and breathing deeply. It was an overcast day. The clouds rumbled overhead. I could feel the electricity filling them. The air seemed to crackle and move with my new awareness.

          When the wind met my body sparks splayed across my chest. It was as if I had another sense. I could feel the electricity running through nearby buildings, through the cords in the walls and hovering just in front of every outlet. I could feel it in the clouds and the slight charge in the very air. I watched in fascination as the electricity crackled over my chest. It was rushing through my veins and I had never felt so alive.

          I stood, walking out onto the small green lawn, staring into the clouds. The clouds rumbled. I felt that slight itching erupt across my skin with more intensity than ever before. I began backing away in fear. I could feel the charged clouds stirring, the energy coalescing. A bolt of lightning arced from one cloud to another. I stepped back, my eyes widening.

          “Damn,” I said in disbelief as a bolt of white lightning leapt from the clouds and in the blink of an eye, struck me in the chest. It knocked me backwards and sent pain lancing through my entire body. The electricity crackled across my skin, sinking into it and burning my veins with the intensity of its energy. I writhed on the lawn, the grass beginning to smolder. I began to scream uncontrollably, the intensity of the experience overwhelming me.

          “Jonathan!” I heard an anguished scream behind me. David came sprinting out of the house. I could just barely see him standing above me in horror as I continued to writhe. “Damn,” he said in horror. “You’re setting the lawn on fire.” He sprinted back into the house, returning with a pitcher of water from the sink.

          “No, David,” I said weakly as the storm of energy began to slowly subside. “Don’t get me wet.”

          I waited and my writhing became a weak twitch. My body seemed to be overwhelmed by the strike, and yet any normal individual would have been long dead and in need of CPR. I had survived but I could feel the electricity within me pushing me to my limits. The last spark sank into my chest, but I could feel it growing, wanting to flow over.

          “Stand back,” I said in warning. I pushed myself upward, first to my knees then to my feet. I stood shakily, my head practically splitting open with pain. I raised my hand, pointing my palm toward the unsightly brick wall surrounding the lawn. I could feel the energy swirling through my body and with all of my concentration I pushed it toward my arm and out my hand. It seemed to spring from my palm and leap across the yard, smashing into the far wall with a loud crack, sending bits of brick and rubble flying in all directions.

          I then aimed my palm skyward, letting the energy channel upward and into the bloated clouds above. I could feel my body weakening, but the pain subsided. It was a relief to expel the excess energy. When I felt it was safe enough to function, I focused on severing the outward flow. It took all of my concentration and my left hand balled into a fist, my nails digging bloody furrows into my hands.

          I could feel the clouds boiling after I released the energy. I sprinted inside, pushing past David who was hurriedly trying to put out the small fire on the lawn. I threw myself onto the couch, breathing deeply. I no longer felt the insistent need to expend some of the built up energy. There was still some present, but it was dormant. At least for now.

          David came in the back door, closing it behind him as another peal of thunder ripped through the air. “What the hell happened?” He moved to the opposite end of the couch.

          “I got struck by lightning,” I said matter-of-factly.

          David stared at me with his eyebrows raised. “A lightning-rod, too, huh?”

          I sat up, my mind working quickly. I was trying to desperately piece together this new ability I now seemed to have. “I think that’s exactly what I am, David.” I reached toward the nearest outlet, concentrating hard. I could feel the electricity in the wall and I pulled it toward me. It arced chaotically to my hand and crackled around my palm. I cut off the flow quickly and watched as it sank into my skin. “I attract it. But obviously, as you saw it goes both ways. I can push it out too.”

          “That was pretty impressive,” he leaned back, his hand moving lazily in the air. The remote was floating above his head, twitching in the air, following the motions of his splayed fingers. “Of course it’s a bit of a problem too.”

          “Yeah, it is. I guess I’m not going swimming anymore, am I?”

          David laughed. He flicked his wrist and the remote settled gently onto the coffee table. “I’m certainly not going swimming with you. You’ll fry me without even realizing it.”

          “I need to get this under control, David. Can you help me?”

          “Help you? Like how, letting you shock the hell out of me?”

          I rolled my eyes. “Come on. I want to get down to the park as soon as the storm dissipates.”

 

 

          The storm clouds didn’t dissipate until well after lunch. David and I had spent the morning in the garage. David worked hard to move objects around the room. By the time the clouds rolled away he was beginning to gain some control. He couldn’t just lift the items; he could guide them through the air. I had to admit, I was slightly jealous. My ability seemed to be so dangerous, not only to myself but to anyone who might get too close. I just hoped desperately that I could get this under control.

          I grabbed a water bottle before exciting out the front door. David led the way and locked the door behind us. We walked quietly, David’s hand stretching behind him. A trail of pebbles rose from the nearby lawns, following his hand. “David,” I said cautiously, “If anyone sees you it won’t be good.” He grimaced, but lowered his hand. The rocks clattered to the sidewalk instantly.

          It was only a minute’s walk to the neighborhood park. The playground towered at the center of a vast expanse of green grass and beautiful trees. A sand pit surrounded the playground, and David and I walked toward it. I stopped several yards away, careful not to get too close to the hulking metal mass in the center of the sandpit.

          “Well, why are we here again?”

          “I don’t know. I thought I could figure out how to get rid of it on command. I don’t want it to build up like it did this morning. Of course, I also don’t plan on getting struck by lightning again.” I moved closer to the playground. I could feel the energy in me rising. It seemed to want to escape my body, to strike the metal and dissipate.

          “Well,” David said, sounding thoroughly bored. “Go ahead.”

          I breathed deeply. I raised my hand slowly and pointed it directly at the metal frame of the nearby swings. “I figured since there was so much metal around here I could get rid of it without blowing junks in the wall.” I could feel the energy stirring inside my veins. Like that morning, I pushed it outward, channeling it through my arm and out of my palm. It lanced forward, striking the metal with a crack and connecting my body to the ductile frame. I pushed more out of my body and the stream intensified, growing wider.

          Gritting my teeth, sweat beading on my forehead, I broke the connection. Stemming the flow, the stream ended. I felt weaker, but still much more alive than I ever had before. The heat from the electricity had melted the paint on the swing set. It rolled down in molten beads, revealing the blackened metal beneath.

          “Okay, so you can channel it outward. But can you do anything else?” David asked, moving toward me. A large handful of sand was hovering above his hand, his fingers swirling and the sand following his movements. “Do you have to channel it into something or can you just push it out of your body?”

          “I don’t know,” I said. “Let me try.”

          David moved in front of me, watching. I raised my hand, palm up. My fingers were clenched in tight fists. I took a deep breath and let it out slowly. I reached out to the energy in my veins and channeled a small portion of it toward my hands. I could feel it building up just beneath my palms. I opened my fingers and electricity crackled between them, running over my hands chaotically. The energy naturally wanted to be released, to become wild and unstoppable. I wouldn’t let it. It took every ounce of my concentration to hold it on my palm and keep it from the metal that was so close.

          David moved forward and his movement startled me. I looked up for a single second and my control slipped. The energy crackled in my palms and seemed to explode outward in great orbs. It radiated around my body in all directions. David cried out and stepped back, throwing his hands in front of him as if blocking a blow. I watched in horror as the electricity swept toward him.

          It never reached him. It stopped just before his outstretched hands as if meeting an invisible barrier. It wrapped around the barrier like water parting when meeting a boulder. It streamed out behind David and struck the sand pit, sending sand flying into the air with a loud crack that threatened to shatter my eardrums.

          I stood there, my mouth wide open and my mind refusing to function.

          David slowly lowered his arms a look of surprise and confusion on his face. “What happened?”

          “I don’t know,” I said shakily. I fought down the energy in my veins, pushing it as deep as it would go. “I lost control. You somehow stopped it. It was like some sort of barrier.” We stood staring at each other for several minutes both of us at a loss for words. It surprised me immensely when he began to laugh. It echoed in great peals through the empty park. “You think this is funny?” I asked in surprised horror.

          David struggled to stop laughing. “Not funny, no. But, come on, Jonathan. This is amazing! Can you imagine the things we can do with these abilities?”

          “What are you talking about?”

          “Think about it! I can move objects with my mind, protect myself with just a thought. And you? You’re a freaking lightning rod! You can absorb it, store it, and manipulate it! Imagine what you could do with it with a little practice. And who knows what else? We could do so much. We could be rich. We could rule the world if we wanted to and no one could stop us.”

          “Are you serious?”
          He sighed, exasperated. Sand was flying through the air, swirling around him as he gestured in his excitement. “Of course not, but think about it! This is amazing, what’s happening to us. We’re unique. We’re special. And who knows what else we can do? Who knows what else you can do?”

          “What else I can do? I don’t understand.”

          “I don’t know either, Jonathan. I’m just throwing out ideas. But think about it. Electricity is just a form of energy, right? What if you can manipulate other forms? Look, it doesn’t really matter. All I’m saying is we shouldn’t be so down about this whole thing. You shouldn’t be so upset. It’s an amazing gift! We need to celebrate it and learn from it!”

          I let his words sink in. As much as I wanted to believe him, I was still afraid. I had no idea what was happening to me. Unless I could get this under control I was a danger to myself and everyone around me. I knew it was possible to control it. That much was now clear. But even if I did learn how to control it and even develop it, what would I do then?

          “Listen to me for once, Jonathan. I don’t know what these abilities mean or what we’re supposed to do with them, but we should at least enjoy them while we can. They’re part of who we are now.” He waited impatiently for a response, but I just stared blankly at him. Although I didn’t want to admit it, I was starting to see it his way. “Come on, you know I’m right.”

          “I know. It’s just…” my voice faltered. As much as I wanted to enjoy these abilities, I didn’t want to hurt anyone. “I don’t want anyone to get hurt because of me.”

          “That’s why you just need a little practice. All it’ll take is time. For both of us.” He moved forward and laid his hand gently on my shoulder. He jumped back with a yelp as a spark jumped between our bodies. “You just need to figure out how to function normally first. Before we go back to school on Monday.” He shook his hand, grimacing.

          “Sorry,” I said sheepishly.

          “It’s fine. Now, I think we should make the rest of that swing set match the melted patch…”

           

 

         

 

 

© 2008 Guardian


Author's Note

Guardian
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Featured Review

Aaaw, I feel sorry for poor David now that I know how neglected he is. Of course, that gives him the perfect mindset to want to betray/harm his brother later on (just a thought). Again, I love how you make them have to practice to handle their gifts, and how realistically the energy flow works.

nothing like pizza when you've got something to hide.

Posted 14 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

The first line already had me thinking of something to add. Obviously, mother's are always calling for dinner. But I felt there was something more she might say, to make it a bit more original. If I was a mom and I had two teenage guys together in the bathroom, I'd be wondering what the hell they were doing. Maybe have her yell over, asking, and have one of them nervously play it off. They seem to know the extent of their powers fairly fast. Maybe it's all the comics they've read, but they should at least be a little more confused by this don't you think?

A guy screaming? After he calmly just mutated into an electric motor? Really? Was the pain that much? Go off of that, if he going to scream, then it must be bad. DESCRIBE IT. It didn't seem that bad. I don't understand why he is almost screaming. Also, he got used it awfully fast. It happened to him all of what? 3 times? Damn. That's quick, maybe a little too quick. First it's painful. Then it's uncomfortable, and then a sentence later it's relieving? Which is it?

One second their relationship is playful, the next he hates him? o-o In the beginning and first book David seems like the opposite of the jealous type. Especially jealous of a nerd. :P Plus he should be used to it from the looks of it. I would either add that into his personality a little, or have him react a little less maliciously. :P Plus, he says he's alone, but earlier he's a really laid back, and funny guy. Shouldn't he have friends? Why does he feel alone?

Why doesn't Jonathon feel pain anymore with the razor? Is that part of his power? o_o; Describe? :P An inch is kind of long o-o; Why doesn't he just shave his head bald? XD His hair style is pretty much shot to hell once the lightning hits don't you think? How long was his hair before?

A bolt of lightening is coming for him and all he says is damn? I would think he would use a little stronger language. :P Or, if you don't want to use strong cussing in the story just say something along the lines of I cursed under my breath. But damn? I would be shouting anything I could fit in. I think even 'Aw, damn' might be better. Or Damnit. Though I think Mother F- or Effing- would be a bit more appropriate, But that's not a problem, just my personal opinion.

Hm. There should be more of a reason not to get him wet other than to just not attract more lightning. If you put water on a computer, what happens? Would that happen to him too? Super heroes got weaknesses too ay? :P

Also it's kind of cliche. One is afraid his powers, the other one is greedy and prided with them. Make it less of a cliche by making their thoughts on their powers more into their character, make it apart of them. What past experience make them feel this way. David is always put down by his parents, so when he finally feels worthy of something because of these wonderful powers he has he's ready to use them to their full extent. Not worried about how it might affect others. Right?

Well, think about these things and act on them. :)
Good luck :D
Can't wait to read more [:

Posted 14 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

Aaaw, I feel sorry for poor David now that I know how neglected he is. Of course, that gives him the perfect mindset to want to betray/harm his brother later on (just a thought). Again, I love how you make them have to practice to handle their gifts, and how realistically the energy flow works.

nothing like pizza when you've got something to hide.

Posted 14 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

A great story! I demand you start writing more immediately! It's really surprisingly engrossing, but you should probably slow down the pace. I know it's a common problem (I do it myself), but the pacing of a story like this reads better if it's slower. You've had the equivalent of 4 or 5 scenes, but you're already at a turning point in the story. Not trying to sound like I don't like it though, it's really good and I hope you write more soon.

Posted 14 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Impassioned and proves that two can work together in an even relationship between two brothers. Great write!

Posted 14 Years Ago


1 of 2 people found this review constructive.


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Added on November 8, 2008
Last Updated on November 21, 2008

Author

Guardian
Guardian

AZ



About
I live in Arizona where the sun is always shining. Writing has always been my passion. I love to read and write. I'm also involved in drama and music. I write a variety of things. Everything from poet.. more..

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