ELISHA LIGHTNING #1: Chasers of the Light Part 5
Professor Billings rubbed his eyes in disgust after his daughter stomped away. As Elisha Lightning headed up the stairs, she touched the Elijah bracelet on her arm. Immediately, she was transformed back into Leslie Billings. Her father headed in the
opposite direction toward the front door and out into the night air. He stood on the front porch. He glanced over at the swing and rocking chair, but decided against both of them. The desert air was dry and cool. The sky was cloudy with only a few stars able to peek through the dense cover. Coyotes howled in the distance. Professor Billings looked up into the night sky. In a sense, it was almost peaceful.
“I know you are watching us,” he said. “You are always watching us.”
He walked down the three stairs and out into the gravel driveway. An old, white, rusted
out pickup truck with two flat tires rested off to the side. The house was a small, two story, vinyl sided house. It had three bedrooms and a two car, attached garage. In the back, there was a screened in patio. There was no grass in the yard, only sand and a few trees. There was an old, above the ground swimming pool, partially collapsed, in the backyard. It had no water in it.
“I have tried to protect her,” Professor Billings said. “To protect us.”
A slight breeze slowly rolled across the desert sands in front of him. The wind cascaded around his body before moving off and circling the home. Suddenly, the sand directly in front of Professor Billings began to rotate from the ground and formed into a small cyclone. The sand climbed into the air. There was a flash of heat lightning in the sky. A figure began to materialize in the miniature sand storm. He wore a white hood which partially covered his youthful face and carried a long staff with an hourglass emblem on the top. His white cloak flapped in the wind revealing the leather pads
on his chest. The wind and sand died down and all was normal again.
“Time Watcher,” Professor Billings said.
“You have summoned me, Professor Billings?” the Time Watcher asked.
“Why would you do so?”
“Grant me more time,” Professor Billings pleaded. “More time so that I can properly train her.”
“Your daughter has embraced the ways of the Elijah bracelet willingly,” the Time Watcher said. “She has become quite powerful. The request is always for more time.”
“She is young and reckless,” Professor Billings replied.
“Time flows at its own currents and by its own tides,” the Time Watcher observed. “You live in a fluid world. One that is ruled by the constraints of manufactured time. I am one that recognizes only the eternal nature of time as granted by the King.”
“There is an alien being named Solstice in my laboratory,” Professor Billings remarked. “There is a Moon Hunter in pursuit of him.”
“We are aware.”
“The last time a Moon Hunter came to earth…”
“You were Elijah Lighting,” the Time Watcher interrupted. “Your team, the Seven, protected this realm. You served your King well. Those days have blended into the fabric of the past, Professor Billings. The Seven are no more. A new evil is manifesting itself in the supernatural and natural realms. A new generation is needed now.”
“The Seven were polished,” Professor Billings said. “We were committed to our faith
and to our mission. We understood the meaning of sacrifice. These kids today can barely get out of bed on a Sunday morning. Their attention span can’t last past a three minute online video. We’re placing our faith in them?”
“Close your eyes, Professor Billings.”
“What are you talking about?”
“Close your eyes.”
The Time Watcher approached as Professor Billings followed his instructions. The Time Watcher placed the hour glass on the top of his staff on Billings’ head. The hour glass was showering a rainbow of colors. At first, Professor Billings, with his eyes still closed,
smiled as a series of images from the past danced through his head. The images were of Elijah Lightning and other heroes battling villains and evil. Then, the images were gone, only to be replaced by images of a darker, forbidden future. Professor Billings gasped in horror, screamed and fell to the ground. The Time Watcher’s staff stopped glowing.
“What did you see, Professor Billings?” the Time Watcher asked.
“I saw us, the Seven. And we were doing what was right and just. But, the pictures faded.
Then, I saw demonic armies with skeleton heads marching through walls and walls of fire,” Professor Billings stammered. “I saw the souls of the desperate people being ripped from their bodies. There was this figure that towered above them all. He had no face. But, I remember he had these long pointed horns on each side of his head. And, he was laughing. He just kept laughing.”
“Did you see your daughter?”
“Elisha Lightning was there,” Professor Billings remarked as he struggled to his feet. “She was standing beside a medieval knight dressed in shining, golden armor.”
“The Seven are no more,” the Time Watcher said. The wind returned, whipping up the sand. He entered the cyclone. “It is time for this generation to assume the mantle of
leadership in the eternal struggle between the forces of good and evil. I will bring them
together. They may seem unready. However, they are all that we have. You have faith in our King. Have faith in his servants.”
The wind and sand roared. Professor Billings covered his face. In seconds, there was silence again. He lowered his hands. The Time Watcher was gone.
Leslie stormed into her bedroom and slammed the door. She walked aimlessly around the room, frustratingly tossing her hands in the air.
“I don’t understand him!" she fumed. “I just don’t understand him!”
Leslie grabbed a large, brown teddy bear from her bed. She shook it.
“Do you understand him?” Leslie quipped. “Please tell me he makes some sense to you.”
The stuffed bear remained silent. Leslie tossed the teddy bear back on the bed. She resumed her pacing around the room.
Leslie finally stopped and calmly strolled over to her desk. She rummaged through the piles of papers resting chaotically on top. She pushed her laptop computer to the far side.
“Where is it?” she whispered under her breath. “Where is it? I just got it yesterday.”
Leslie began opening desk drawers and tossing the contents onto the floor.
“Finally,” she said. Leslie removed an envelope. She flipped it open and pulled out a handwritten note. She fell down onto her bed.
“Dear Leslie,” she read aloud to herself. “Come live with me in Las Vegas. I am going to Europe soon. I would love for you to come along for company. Love, Mom.”
For a moment, Leslie smiled and disappeared into deep thought. Suddenly, her cellphone rang. Leslie fumbled around in her pockets.
“Leslie, it’s Sarah. I got news. It’s two things actually, but it’s really big news!”
“What are you talking about?” Leslie asked. She placed the letter down.
“It’s Scott,” Sarah excitedly answered. “He asked me out. We’re like boyfriend and girlfriend now! I want to scream! AAAAHHH!”
“Don’t you think you should like actually go out on a date with him before you’re boyfriend and girlfriend?”
“Formalities. Formalities,” Sarah responded. “He’s on the football team. He’s the editor of the school newspaper. He’s on the track team. He’s…”
“He’s as sharp as a cactus in winter,” Leslie sarcastically interrupted. “I thought we had rules about dating jocks.”
“We do, but do I need to go through the list again for you?" Sarah asked.
“Look, it’s after four o’clock. You didn’t call me just for that. My dad already wants to ground me until I go off to college. He’d kill me if he knew I was up here talking on the phone.”
“Where did you go tonight at the party? You just disappeared. Alicia and I were worried sick about you.”
“Yeah, I can tell. I hitched a ride home. No biggy.”
“Seriously, Leslie. A lot of weird stuff happened tonight.”
“Really? Like what?”
“I heard Elisha Lightning was fighting some bad guy out in the desert. And then, I heard Dakota Nelson’s car got hit by some mega asteroid from outer space! People are saying he got like blown up or something!”
“Elisha Lightning?” Leslie laughed. “You must be dreaming! And Dakota Nelson probably just wandered off into the desert to smoke his pipe peace and protest some new highway.”
“That is so mean, Leslie! You can’t blame a guy for being socially conscious.”
“You’re right. I shouldn’t have said that.”
“But I did hear he liked you.”
“Alright. Okay. This is getting awkward now. I’m like really hanging up,” Leslie remarked. “I will see you at school tomorrow or, I guess, I should say later.”
“Don’t be mad, silly!”
Leslie hung up the cellphone.
“Maybe I need to check this out,” she said.
Leslie stood and tapped her left arm. The Elijah bracelet took form. She closed her eyes and whispered the transformation prayer. Bolts of purple and green lightning swirled around her. Her clothes slowly faded away and were replaced by the Elisha Lightning uniform.
“Now, that’s better,” she said.
Elisha Lightning opened the bedroom window and climbed out onto the small, gable roof. She carefully closed the window and crawled across the tiles to the edge. She peered over the gutters. It was a twelve foot or more drop to the ground.
“This is embarrassing,” she said. “I wonder…”
Elisha Lightning stood and ran off the roof in a burst of purple and green speed. She was moving so quickly, for a moment, it appeared as if she was walking on the air. Gradually, her body descended until she was running across the desert surface.
“That’s so cool!” she yelled out as she zipped past sleeping lizards and desert foliage in a blur. “I was literally walking on air!”
Dakota’s crash site had already been investigated and abandoned by the authorities. All that remained was the burned out wreckage and debris of his sports car and the yellow police tape that had hastily been spread out across four cactuses. A rattlesnake had already taken up residence in the burned out body under the hood where the engine once rested.
Elisha Lightning walked around the scene. She stopped every few minutes to examine a
piece of wreckage. A piece of charred plastic caught her eye. She reached down and picked it up. It was Dakota Nelson’s driver’s license.
“There was the explosion,” she said. “But, I know I saw two figures in the fire. Then, there was only the one.”
Elisha Lightning glanced down at the driver’s license again.
“Who are you, Solstice?” she wondered.
THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES.......