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Souls Warrior


Michael Faircloth

Chapter 9

Back to Where Bane Began

“This is such a great place to train dear” speaks Catherine as she pushes the twins in their stroller to their safe area playroom in the back corner of the studio. She places the one-year-old twins in their play area, and then she steps to the mats for a little sparing with her husband. Being a Saturday, all the kids are home and a family workout is in session. There is no name giving to the martial arts practiced by the Bane family. By age ten, the children would easily defeat most adult black belts, but they are not allowed to compete for this would bring unwanted attention to them.

Catherine looks at the wall where Bane has placed photos of each of the children. Under each photo is a list of skills necessary for them to master. A nail used to hold a status sign is beside each skill. The signs are: “Too Young”, Time to Start”, “In the Middle”, Almost as Good as Dad”, and the final level “As Good as Mom”. The progress charts are placed left to right starting with the oldest. The order is as follows: Luke age 14, Jake age 13, Kathy age 12, Cheryl age 10, Rebecca age 8, William age 6, Michael age 4, Angel age 1, and Mark age 1. When child has mastered all skills on the wall, then it will be time for the truth to be reviled and they will begin training in the secret levels below the studio.

Catherine takes her position on the matt across from her big strong husband, “Honey, come and let me show the kids why I’m the boss” taunts Catherine. “I will try to take it easy on you honey; I try to teach our boys to be courteous to women, even if they are trying to hurt you. So come and get it” are the last words from Bane’s mouth as Catherine’s foot is planted squarely against his jaw and he flies across the room landing against the wall, out cold. “Kids, wake up your father and tell him that I’m going back to the house to fix some lunch. Thank him for me, I love a courteous man,” jokes Catherine as she grabs the twins and heads back to the house.

“Hey dad, wake up, throw some water on his face” commands Luke as he assumes command since he is the oldest conscious person in the studio. Rebecca, always loving this part, has a bottle of water ready, pours it on her dad’s face, and enjoys watching come back to life. “Wow, not again, didn’t I tell you guys tell me when to keep my mouth shut?” groans Bane as he gets up off the floor. “Daddy, it is so much fun to watch mommy knock you out” laughingly speaks Rebecca. “Why is mommy so much better than you daddy” ask little Michael. “Michael, you have a very special mom and she has been training a lot longer than I have and to be quite honest, she’s just better than I’ll ever be” explains Bane. “Mom’s better than dad, mom’s better than dad….” can be heard from the studio as the kids enjoy their dad’s vulnerability, which is a rare thing for them to see.

“Luke, you are in charge. I want you to work only on the ‘no sight’ exercises. This time, please use your eyes when striking at the other children. Kathy’s cut from the last time you were in charge has finally healed and I am sure that mom does not want to sew up any children today. Remember the teacher is responsible for the safety of the student,” finishes Bane as he heads back to the house to spend time with the twins. “You got it dad, I’ll keep my eyes open this time,” replies Luke.

In the house, Bane finds Catherine asleep on the couch again, with the twins by her side. He quietly sits down beside her, grabs the remote, and begins to change channels on the television. “A little news to catch up on world events” thinks Bane as he settles in on the couch. “Just in, there has been an explosion at the White House and it is rumored that the Vice President has been killed. Fortunately, a young man who answered to the name ‘Walk’ protected the President. This young man appeared out of nowhere, grabbed the president, and managed to get him to another part of the White House as the room he was in became engulfed in flames. The president would only explain his rescue as an ‘act of God that sent an angel to save him’.” is heard from the television. “Good ole Walk, still saving the world. I miss it already but know that I must concentrate on training my family. That’s enough news I think I’ll watch the cartoon channel,” thinks Bane as he changes channels.

About an hour has passed since Bane sat down with Catherine and all have fallen asleep. “Waa!” wakes up the tired parents as Angel lets them know that it is diaper time and she wants it done now. “I will take care of it dear. You rest while you can,” Bane tells Catherine as he picks up his little girl and cleans up the mess that she has left for him. “That’s daddy’s girl. Now go back to sleep so I can relax,” is heard from Bane’s mouth as he talks baby talk to his girl. “Honey, where are the rest of the kids?” ask Catherine as she wakes from her nap. “I have Luke doing ‘no sight “drills with them,” replies Bane. “Oh no! You know that I don’t like sewing up my children. We practice with real weapons and Luke likes to play games sometimes,” is heard from a panicked Catherine. “I have cautioned Luke to behave and I am confident that he will. He is just bored with the training. He has well mastered all the normal stuff. As far as that goes, so have Jake and Kathy. Maybe it is time to take them to the next level and expose them to the truth of our family,” speaks Bane with a very serious look upon his face. “I don’t know dear. They are mature enough but this is a little scary for me. I don’t want to start them too soon. Let’s consult Walk first. I will leave him a message with Kelly. I know that is where he will be. Some things never change no matter how old we get,” laughs Catherine. With the words of change spoken, a message is sent to Walk that will alter the happy family forever.

The family is enjoying another great breakfast at the Bane home, as the doorbell rings. “Mom, it’s your friends Walk and Kelly” shouts William. “Come have a seat and enjoy breakfast with us,” greets Catherine. “Thanks, I think we will. I have not had a good breakfast in a while,” remarks Walk as Kelly slugs him in the arm. They eat breakfast and talk over coffee as the kids head out to wait for the school bus. The doorbell rings again and it is Grandma who is watching Michael and the twins today. “You guys go and take care of your business, Grandma is on duty and I want to play with my babies. Michael, lets go wake up the twins and have some fun,” speaks Grandma as they head into the twins bedroom.

“It’s nice to see you guys again. Is there anything wrong? Your message sounded urgent,” questions Walk. “We need your advice old friend. Our three oldest children have mastered all the normal fighting skills we can teach them and they grow bored with training. We feel that it is time to tell them of our true family’s heritage. This is new for us and we don’t quite know how to do it. We need you to guide us if you agree that it is time to bring them into our real world,” pleads Catherine. “I see, now it all makes since. Have the three children at the studio tonight at seven. We will see if they are ready for the truth,” commands Walk.

“Dad, I need my sleep, I have a track meet tomorrow and need my rest” cries Kathy. “You would win on your worst day Kathy, so bear with me and I promise you that you will not be disappointed,” responds Bane. Walk, Kelly, Guss and Kate enter into the studio. “Welcome my friends; glad you were able to make it tonight. Catherine will be here any second, she is putting the twins to bed,” informs Bane. As Catherine enters the studio, Walks enters the center of the room and begins, “Hello Luke, Jake and Kathy. You know me as your parents young friend. What you see is not what I am. I am here to determine if you are ready for your real training. Up to this point you have learned nothing compared to what I know.” “You may be a little older than us Walk, but I am fairly certain that the three of us could easily defeat you. Our skills are of a level that we are not allowed to compete in fights because it wouldn’t be fair. I mean you no disrespect, but we know what we are doing and I don’t think that you have a clue about us,” respectfully replies Luke.

“Respectful and confident; I would expect no less than that from the children of two of this worlds greatest warriors. I will test you. I will keep things to your low skill level and will not use any of my special skills. Begin at anytime, I am always ready. “With these words, Walk bows his head, closes his eyes and waits. Luke, Jake and Kathy form a circle around Walk. With out a word they attack in combination only to see Walk jump and flip over them and land behind them. Still with his eyes closed and his head bowed, Walk once again waits. They circle him again and once again attack in combination. Once again, Walk jumps, but only to find that Kathy has predicted his move and catches him in mid air. Luke, already in motion, sends a flying kick to Walk’s stomach as Jake delivers a kick in the back of Walks head. As the four of them drop back to the floor, Walk is lying on the floor with Bane’s children standing silently awaiting Walk’s next move. Walk sits up and begins talking,” Damn that hurt! I didn’t see that coming. You predicted my next move so easily, how is that possible?” Jake answer’s, “Sir, your arrogance gives you away. We could have easily stopped you the first time, but our mother has taught us to be kind to those who feel the need to appear better than others do. We held back on our attack as not to injure you. Kathy could have easily snapped your back when she grabbed you, Luke could have easily crushed your heart when he kicked you and I would have had no problem decapitating you with my kick. You are easy to predict, you are arrogant, your skills are modest at best and it would not be fair for us to hurt you. I hope we brought you no shame, maybe if your friends helped you it would be a fair competition.”

“Ha, ha, ha, never in my many lives have I been so amused. The three of you are splendid. I do indeed think that it is time for you to know the truth of who you are.” With these words spoken, Walk begins to levitate and is now floating in the air in front of the children. “The children join Walk and also levitate to his surprise. “ “I still don’t know what is so special about you sir. Mom and Dad both speak of you as a great warrior, but all I see is another kid with good training,” adds Kathy. “Ha, ha, ha, this can get no better, let’s all go to the second level and open the minds of these new Soul Warriors.” Walk, Bane and Catherine each take the hand of a child and transport them to the second level of the studio.

“Ok, this is different,” remarks Luke surprisingly. “Now that I have your attention, let me introduce my self. I am always known as Walk. I have lived so many lives, that I cannot remember all of them. I tell others like me that I have been around for over nine thousand years, but that is a modest number. I am the oldest living Souls Warrior on this planet. I have known your mother for a few thousand years. Your father is still on his first life, but has quickly become a great Souls Warrior. You, your brothers, and your sisters will all become Souls Warriors, “is heard from a smiling Walk.

“He’s so dramatic isn’t he? Dear, let me talk to the kids for a minute. Guys, you have great skills because of two things. First, you are born of great warriors so genetics contribute. Secondly, you have been trained at a level that normal humans will never know. If you are ready for the rest of your training, you must allow us to take you to a far away safe place for your transformation. If this is cool with you guys we will continue,” concludes Kelly.

The three kids talk amongst themselves and Luke delivered the response, ”Only if we can make it back in time for Grandma’s birthday party next Friday”. With those words, the three kids were off to a safe house for their first meeting with the Souls General and their subsequent transformation. Bane and Catherine, now alone on the second level of the studio, stared at each other for a few seconds before they grabbed each other and held on in silence. They knew that when their children return that they would no longer be kids, but the newest warriors. Tears fell from their eyes as the reality of who they are, settled in. Sometimes there is little difference between joy and pain.

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