Lew Goddard

Edited by Anne Goddard

© Copyright 2021 by Lew Goddard

Photo of a kick to the shin,                                                   

It was just about midnight and he was on his daily, I should say nightly, walk through an area where the residents were in bed and he encountered no one. It wasn’t described as a stroll; in fact, it was a very rapid walk that extended his long legs and stretched powerful muscles. Muscles that were developed and refined over a long period in his life. His trip was five miles return summer and winter. Winter in this city, never saw snow.

The time of night was chosen to reduce the possibility of recognition. Time has brought him to basically an end to his profession. He knew the time would come if he was lucky enough that no one had been capable of sending him to the other world. Twenty years, scattered over most of the world had drawn on his abilities to survive many encounters with people who had no feeling toward other human beings. It encompasses a very emotional burning in his chest to know that it is now that the talents he once exhibited so gracefully, are ebbing.

In preparation for a new way of life, he knew he should disguise himself to be able to move about freely. His beard was started with its sprinkling of white tentacles on his chin. That was the first new facial contours, to attract primary attention to his beard. Consultations with a plastic surgeon appeared to allow subtle changes short of any major surgery. The change to his vision from contact lenses to glasses was simply employed. In addition, he had decided to let his hair grow much longer than a close-cropped crown. Indeed, he was losing a bit of his hair from the top of his head but he had no control over that happening. Once those changes were in place, he would decide if anything more should be considered. He not only wished to disappear to the general populace but, in fact, his business associations through his work often creating conflict and possible revenge. He had to disappear and live where no one would pay attention.

Nearing his living quarters on his return, he heard a loud scream of a frightened woman in pain. His first reaction was to stay away and not become involved. With life-long instincts, he couldn’t leave without finding the woman and whatever was happening to her.

He ducked between two houses to his right and came upon a green area that municipalities provided when developing began. The image of a man holding a woman on the ground was visible due to the neighboring street lights. In took a matter of ten seconds to run over to the couple and he looked at the man and said in a deep rumble, “You’d better leave her alone.”

And who is tough enough to stop me?”

The next few seconds found that attacker with a possible broken shin bone originating from a kick from the man whose boots had steel caps. When the perpetrator bent over partially due to the instant pain, he received a hard hand that bore immense strength to the left side of his neck near his ear. He was unconscious by the time he hit the ground.

Are you hurt and can you stand?” he asked the woman.

She pushed herself off the grass and staggered to her feet, looked up and advised she was not badly hurt.

Her benefactor took his time viewing her body, a black skinned beautiful face with long curly dark hair. She was wearing a colorful silk blouse that accentuated her feminine amenities along with black skin-hugging tights that ended in mid-calf. The observation developed in his experience with all manner of individuals. In an instant he took details of the person as if he was in a subconscious state and the memory would never be lost.

He moved closer to the woman with more of a statement than a question, “Your name?”

She didn’t answer but asked why he thought it was important?

He smiled, “I have just saved you from who knows what might have happened. I would be pleased to know who I saved.”

Tanika,” she quietly said, What is your name?”

Now that’s a different story and it may sound strange but, if you knew my name, it could be very dangerous for you. I’m sorry to say.”

Is he dead?” looking down at the man on the ground.

No, he’ll be out for a bit yet and have an extremely sore neck. He may wish he was dead.”

I should go, Tanika murmured, I was on my way home. You can see my apartment building from here.”

I’ll walk you home.”

In a matter than less than five minutes, they entered the security door to Tanika’s apartment building.

She harbored a smile, “Thank you so very much. What will happen to him?”

I’ll just leave him. Since he will suffer for some time, he may think twice before molesting another woman. Don’t worry, take care, be safe and good night.”

Weber returned to his apartment. It looks just like a thousand other one-bedroom apartments but, there is a big difference. It is equipped with sophisticated communication and information gathering systems. Weber needs and uses it for his management to coordinate his activities and remedial action.

Remedial action often requires conflicts with very severe results.

He hangs his jacket in the closet by the door and heads for the bathroom. His beard needs trimming and fashioning for the second time and is beginning to change his appearance quite well.

One morning a couple of weeks later Weber awakes knowing that he will hear from his management and he will have to go to work. Knowing this, he makes sure his personal phone is at hand.

Weber is endowed with a phenomenal psychic ability referred to as pre-cognition. It is usually welcome but at times when he receives multiple messages, he feels confused. Then he has to respond to the one that has the most need and continue. It often happens when his employer needs him as it did this time.

The message comes through almost immediately. The text reads, “Nice day!! Would you like to go fishing?” The double exclamation icons requires him to use another phone.

For his reply he uses a special phone that cannot be breached by anyone and Weber is the only user. “Yes, I would like to go fishing today.”

There is an occurrence close to the Walther Bridge about four miles downstream where you are located. As usual, you have our full permission to use your judgement about what has to be done and any follow up remedial action. Also, rent a small boat with a small motor and dress like a normal fisherman. By travelling in this manner should get you to ground zero with little problem.”

Roger that,” as Weber texts his reply. The phone will be taken with him should he need confidential information and help.

The rental of a small boat is hastily arranged and Weber is moving downstream on the Pine River. At this particular point the river is more than 300 yards wide and there is little evidence of the flow but Weber just lets the motor idle and he still sweeps along quickly. The water was quite clear and it was possible to see some of the undergrowth. It had a calming effect and he looked straight ahead.

Within a short time, around a bend in the river, the shadow of the bridge was evident. He thinks to himself that it is about a mile in the distance. Abruptly, he realizes that he hasn’t checked the environment around him. Off to his left, he hears a sudden roar of a motor boat. Too late, he sees that it is large and the type that would be used in rough water or in the swamp. Mechanically very solid.

This is proven within the next minute and it is impossible to maneuver and avoid a collision. The heavy machine slams into the bow of Weber’s boat, destroying it and causing Weber’s boat to sink rapidly into the cold river water. Clear of the boat, Weber sees the shadow of the attacking boat above him. The driver has stopped to survey the damage. Weber takes strong strokes up to the nearest gunwale and rolls over on to the floor of the boat.

He immediately regains his feet and meets a man who appears to wish Weber harm. There is no hesitation and a strong kick with his steel capped boots aimed at the man’s groin.

Out of the question for now.

The boat driver rises from his seat and lunges at Weber. Instead of retreating, Weber quickly advances, grabs the man’s arms, spreads them so that he can butt his head directly at the man’s nose. There is so much blood that the man starts to choke and this allows Weber to strike his fist against the man’s left temple. He is unconscious as he hits the floor.

Weber staggers to the driver’s seat and drops down breathing heavily and feeling somewhat faint, realizing that he must be certainly getting too old to fight like he used to and never hardly raised his heart beat.

He picks his secure phone out of his specially stitched pocket and speed dials his management. The report of the intended collision and the aftermath with the two men he advises that his plan is to go back to Conklin city and leave the boat at the wharf. In the meantime, he asks management to provide enough details to the police of the incident so that he does not become involved. Further, as soon as he arrives at the wharf he will disappear from the boat.

Management acknowledges and agrees. He is still advised to drive to the Walther Bridge and make sure everything is under control and if there is a need to act, please do so.

Weber finds some rope and ties both men securely to parts of the boat and proceeds back to Conklin City.

He enters his bathroom to freshen his body. He stands looking at the mirror for some time, reflecting on his life, his profession, such as it might be called. Sometimes the consequences of his actions turned out to be fatal and, indeed, he had administered injuries to a large number of people. He had made mistakes that brought him to his knees and regrets that never really left his mind.

After he showered and change clothes, he jumped into his Rover and headed to the Walther Bridge. He noticed as soon as he arrived, there was a Deputy Sherriff standing at the entrance to a large acreage next to the river.

The Deputy stopped Weber and asked why he was present at this property.

Weber advised that he was directed to an apparent occurrence earlier that day and he was back after his episode with the boaters and where they were.

Is this all under control now and is there anyone else that should be apprehended?” Weber asked.

Yeah, there is another guy we are searching for someplace in the woods. Apparently, he is the leader and the two that you encountered stole the boat from this property.”

Then, I’ll leave it up to you,” Weber pronounced.

No, I won’t leave it up to you. I’ll leave it up to me, Weber thought to himself.

How long and how many searchers are in the forest?”

As far as I know, there are up to eight members stretched out heading east. We are in radio contact but, I haven’t heard from anyone lately,” the Deputy announced.

At that, Weber drove around and stopped about a quarter mile from the Deputy’s location. He gathered a radio and slid a warmer jacket over his shoulders and started walking to the woods where the Deputy reported the ring leader was hiding.

Four days later, Weber was back in his apartment covered with forest debris, even a wood tick had found a spot on one arm. I’ll have to check to see if I’ve contracted Lyme Disease, he thought to himself.

Once he had discarded his clothes in the laundry and showered. His hair was collar length and his beard was well formed. A further appointment with the plastic surgeon was scheduled the following Tuesday at nine.

To finalize the request to investigate near the Walther Bridge, he texted a message to his management. Quote: “No more fishing today.”

An immediate reply asked if this was permanent?

His reply was simply, “Yes.” They would know that he had been successful.

Later Tuesday morning after his session with the surgeon, it was difficult to move his eyes from side to side. The crow wrinkles at each temple had been frozen and smoothed out. Further, his nose was shaped slightly different. Looking into the mirror, he hardly recognized himself.

Ten days later, he had the very small stitches removed and once his skin faded back to natural, he would seriously pursue retirement. He noted that as he passed a short strip mall on one of his walks and it was obvious that it was a favorite watering hole for policemen. There was no hesitation this time to walk in and see if he could virtually hide in the open. Inside, to obtain coffee all the customer had to do was collect a non-reusable cup from the counter and pour his own coffee. With a full cup, Weber took a surveillance of the room. A few of the men looked up but paid no more attention. Weber was satisfied that he passed the test.

Another three weeks passed and he presented a notice to management that he had been thinking very seriously about retiring. What was the necessary procedure for him to leave his job? The reply was what he expected. He was a veteran and had caused no concern to his employer. He already knew that but the first step was to go through with procedures.

Now that he thought he could hide in the open areas of the city, he established erratic walks at different times in no sequence. He certainly did note that his neighbors and fellow walkers paid little attention to him. His walks would be maintained even if he retired so, he could keep physically active. A further idea came to mind. He would become a member in a gym with a trainer. “Now, he said to himself, I just have to get used to a new life.”

One day he was half way through his timed walk and was about twenty minutes from home, when a young man stopped ahead of him and waited. He was on the sidewalk in front of the café that catered to policemen.

It was not unusual to feel a strong pre-cognition episode. This time, it was quite different and that he would be accosted or contacted from someone from his past. The man before him might be able to solve his premonition.

The young man spoke first, announcing his name was Marco.

Hello, Marco. I don’t believe I know you,” Weber stated.

Well, I know who you are but have never heard your name,” the man uttered. I must have seen you a dozen times until I was sure who you were.”

As in all cases when Weber met a stranger, he took an inventory of his being and stored it away in his memory bank.

Marco continued, “Do you remember crawling up a three-story building and helping a boy standing on a ledge?”

That was some fifteen years ago and I’ll certainly won’t forget, “Weber smilingly announced.

Marco grinned, “I was that boy.”

Weber shook his hand seeing the vision of him and Marco on a quiet but relatively cold day in a city some two thousand miles from this location.

That day, he had happened to be driving through the city and came upon a police and fire and rescue blockade that he could not get by. He got out of his Rover and left it so it wouldn’t interfere with what was happening.

He acknowledged a uniformed policeman and asked him what the trouble was. “There is a young boy standing near an open window. He has his back to the wall and his feet on a six-inch ledge and he says he can’t move his feet and go back in the window. He also refuses to jump.”

Weber sees that it is an old building with corners and crevices all over its face.

He calls the boy, but he doesn’t answer. It is very obvious that he is terrified. Further he tells the boy, it is perfectly safe to jump onto what is like a trampoline. Still no response.

Weber turns to the person in charge of the rescue and discusses how he and they could bring the boy down safe. Weber says that he knows what to do.

I don’t know whether I should even try this and it scares me. The boy needs to be rescued.

He immediately grabs the window ridges and pulls himself up to the next. The rescuers below attempt to stop him and yell that it’s too dangerous.

With what appears to be super human strength he advances to the ledge that the boy is standing on. “Now, son, you would like to go back inside, wouldn’t you?”

The boy looks at Weber and blinks. “This may sound strange, but I’m going to you to ask your feet to move toward the open window. I’ll put my hand just pass your right foot and you move it to where my hand is.”

It took some time for the boy to respond and move his feet inches at a time. Weber moved with him and the boy reached the window and his Mother helped him into the apartment.

A cheer rang out and Weber took hold of the boys Mothers hand, and managed to hang on with one hand enabling him to swing one foot to the side of the open window, then slide into the home to safety. Weber admitted that he was just as terrified as Marco was.

Marco stares wide eyed at Weber, “You remember every detail like it just happened.”

It’s on a movie in my brain. I still don’t know how I climbed that wall and survived, but here we are, commented Weber.”

Marco told Weber that he found out who he was from Tanika. During that last few months, we have been, you know, being together. “I texted her and she will be here in few minutes. I hope you don’t mind.”

Do you have a job? What adventure are taking now that you are an adult?”

No full time job yet, I’m training to be a test pilot.” Marco replied.

That figures,” Weber muttered.

Tanika arrived and she stepped out of the SUV. “Remember me?” she asked.

Never forget.”

Weber pulled them aside, “I’m only going to say this once, so listen intently. You don’t know who I am and please do not tell anyone about me. It could be very dangerous if anyone, and I mean anyone, found out that you know where I am. Dangerous to you as well as me. Please stay away from me until there comes a time that I can get in touch with you and I would like to do that very much. Do you understand? Do you promise?”

In spite of this message, he broke his own rules and put his arm around both of them, and quietly said, “Be safe, not sorry.” He turned and walked away.

A couple of cops came to Marco and Tanika, “Who was that guy?”

Haven’t a clue,” Marco answered.

Contact Lew

(Unless you type the author's name
in the subject line of the message
we won't know where to send it.)

Lew's story list and biography

Book Case

Home Page

The Preservation Foundation, Inc., A Nonprofit Book Publisher