Each week a group of authors participate weekly in Wednesday Briefs Flash Fiction. Each installment is 500 - 1000 words long and is posted to our blogs each week. After you read the latest in my story, click on the links at the end to visit the other flashers.
When no one spoke, Levi continued. “That’s why I stopped the meds. I thought they were causing me to feel nothing but…” Still that empty lonely echoing within him had continued.
“But it didn’t help,” Dr. Winston said finishing Levi’s thought. “Oh, Levi. This just keeps getting stranger and stranger. I know this is a lot to take in at once.”
More than he could have ever imagine. Levi looked down at the bloody tissue. Blood covered his palm. “Can I use the bathroom?” He could only imagine what his face looked like.
Dr. Winston nodded. “The door behind Jeb.”
Levi sighed. Of course, it was. Levi walked toward Jeb wondering if he would move at all. Just as Levi paused, Jeb stepped aside and motioned for Levi to pass.
Levi shut the heavy wood door behind him and turned the lock. He exhaled at his image in the mirror. Not much blood was left on his face. Quickly, he washed up. Frowning, he leaned into the mirror, focusing on his eyes, searching for any hint that his soul was missing. He didn’t look soulless. He envisioned a gaunt, lifeless image, gray skin, white hair, black, dead, doll-like eyes. No, he didn’t look soulless but fuck all if he didn’t feel it in every cell. “Hollow, unfeeling” as that woman had said. Had she seen the gaping black hole where a soul should have been?
Loss overflowed within him. Overcome with misery, tears filled Levi’s eyes. He squeezed them shut against the burn and droplets rolled down his face. His couldn’t have been more surprised if blood had leaked from his eyes. Reaching a fingertip, he trapped a tear as it rolled past his mouth. Closing his eyes, he pictured the incredulous look on Logan’s face, the defeat Levi had served him, Logan turning his back. Gone.
Shudders wracked Levi’s body as he was overtaken by sobs. Logan, I’m so sorry. He grabbed his cell phone and called Logan’s number, willing him to answer but got his voice mail. The sounds of Logan’s voice pushed him further into remorse. Through blurry eyes, he struggled to text his brother.
I am so sorry. Please forgive me, please!
Hitting send, Levi needed to see Logan. Cleaning his face of any traces of tears, he exited the bathroom nearly smacking Jeb with the door. So close.
“Feel better?” Jeb asked but Levi passed by refusing to answer.
“Well, it’s been a lot of fun but I have to get home. My parents think I’m at class and my last one is over in exactly forty-five minutes. If I’m late, they’ll freak.” Levi walked purposefully toward the door.
Dr. Weston raced to block Levi’s exit. “Wait. Levi, there’s more.”
Levi had enough, way too more than enough. “I’m full,” he assured his former teacher.
“What more could there be? I’m soulless and if you just keep Mr. Bad Ass Energy over there away from me then all will be good.”
Jeb grunted but said nothing.
“But you can get your soul back,” Dr. Winston said.
The possibility hadn’t even occurred to Levi. “Got any lying around? I’ll take what you’ve got.”
“Levi the only person who can remove a soul is a Seer and the only person who can hold that soul is a Soul Keeper. The entire point of removing a soul is to allow the person to gain a mature conscious. Then the soul is almost always returned, generally anywhere between seventeen and twenty-two. It all depends on the person’s personal growth.”
“So someone has my soul somewhere in a jar on their shelf and their supposed to give it back?” If this day took many more twist and turns, Levi was going to puke.
“In a manner of speaking. It’s the Guardian who decides the right time to return the soul and only the Keeper can return it. There are strict rules that govern Seers and Keepers.
And souls are not kept in jars. Breakable and all,” Dr. Winston smirked at that.
Levi imagined the “oops” moment of a jar full of soul hitting the floor.
“But we don’t know who my Guardian is.”
“No, we don’t, but we can go to the next best person to tell us the Keeper’s name. Only one person can give permission for an infant’s soul to be removed.”
“I really hope you don’t mean God,” Levi sighed with exasperation.
She shook her head. “Your father.”
Levi stood next to the driver’s door of his car in the parking lot, clutching his keys tightly in his fist. After all the bombs that had been dropped on him, he’d been sent away with two unwanted things. First, a mission to obtain strands of his father’s hair for some Spell of Recognition, in order to start the search for his soul. Second, Jeb.
“You’re not driving my car,” Levi said and wrapped his arms tight around his chest, hiding the keys under his arm.
Jeb stood about two feet away from Levi. Holding his hand out, Jeb waited with that calm, annoying demeanor for Levi to hand over the keys. He would be waiting a long time. Levi could be stubborn, too.
“Let’s go, kitten.”
“What the hell?” Levi sneered. “Don’t call me that.”
Jeb smirked. The gesture was both unnerving and alluring at the same time. Gods, Levi wanted to hate him and kiss him at the same time. "You remind me of a kitten. Curious and wary at the same time. Full of spit and fire and energy. I can feel it coming off of you in waves," he whispered almost seductively but then dropped his hand. Levi took that as a sign victory for his fortitude, however instead of moving away came closer. Levi backed up against the driver’s door as their chests almost touched. Levi had to strain his neck to look into Jeb's face. Jeb leaned forward resting a hand on the driver's window behind Levi. "And you're ready to attack at any moment. You look like you want to scratch my eyes out right now or...maybe crawl into my lap and purr."
Levi gritted his teeth forcing the need to touch the solid chest before him. He couldn't let Jeb get the better of him. The untrustworthy man was playing Levi to get his way. “Have you ever heard of personal space?” The words, which were meant to come out with more force, were merely a whisper.
Jeb fixed his gaze on Levi. Other than the slight movement of his eyes, not a muscle twitched, as if he were carved from stone. Damn, those eyes could see right through Levi. And the heat pooling in his groin messed with his head. Shit, was he getting turned on?
“You’re afraid of me.” Jeb’s voice was raspy and self-assured.
Levi stiffened his spine and pulled up his chin. “No, I’m not.” Hard to sound convincing with a shaky voice, and yes, he was frightened by the man...and definitely turned on. That was twice today he’d felt something mirroring lust.
Jeb leaned closer, his cheek brushing across Levi’s causing him to shudder as Jeb whispered into his ear. “You should be.”