by John Andreula
Ty sat on the thick gray park bench. He eyes were directed at the children running frantically through the play structure. They were playing some variant of tag Ty had never seen before.
The Traveler’s mind wandered as he drank in the events and stories of the past day.
Just days ago Ty was living a carefree existence in solitude. Finding water and food, and building a fire and shelter were his only concerns; his only responsibilities.
Things sure change fast, he internalized.
Three children were excluding a younger one from their game. They claimed he was not playing by their imposed rules. Two mothers rushed over to arbitrate the dispute. One held an infant in her arms.
After an exchange of words and sour looks on the faces of the three older kids, one was led from the dispute by his mother pulling him by the arm.
The second woman scanned the playground. Her eyes settled on Ty. The look on her face turned sour. It told him that she did not approve of his presence.
The woman placed her baby in her jogging stroller and hurried her own brood off down a cement path away from the park. She sent one final disdainful look back at Ty before pointing her nose toward the sky and continuing on.
Ty then had the park to himself. That was the way he liked it anyway. It was a beautiful sunny day in the colorful mountains of Colorado. The sun was bright. The wafting breeze was cool on his skin. The air smelled clean and felt crisp. The Traveler inhaled deeply.
Ty considered how each mountain he came upon on the road was unique. Each had its own personality. They all had their own imposing sense of where they belonged in the world. Here was another mountain that was nothing like Ty.
Ty thoughts drifted to Glitch. He still wasn’t entirely sure what to think about the bedraggled man. Ty couldn’t read Glitch, past superficial observation. He didn’t have enough experience around people to have developed any skill for it, but Glitch seemed the type that only had his own self-interests in mind.
Ty stayed along for the ride though. Something about Glitch and his stories called out to him deep within his soul. There was something about the man that told Ty he should ride this incredible story out.
Glitch spoke about his tribe. He went on about others’ unique abilities. He talked about Gigi, the defacto leader of the tribe. Glitch had a peculiar negativity about him whenever he spoke about Gigi, but he seemed inclined to follow her anyhow.
Glitch’s tenor became increasingly enigmatic as the pair had gotten closer to Silverthorne. The old man seemed proud and passionate about his tribe, but he himself spoke as if he were unworthy of being included with them. In that way Ty completely understood the man.
Overall, Glitch never stopped talking. It was tedious. The incessant banter gave Ty a headache. The young man was grateful for this time to himself.
A wisp of wind brushed Ty’s face as he sat in the sunlit park. The plastic multicolored merry-go-round nearby began squeakily spinning on its own. Its speed curiously increased. Strange, Ty thought to himself. That breeze was nowhere near strong enough to move that thing.
Ty continued watching the children’s plaything, and his mind began to wander again. Then he shivered off the shadow of a memory and closed his eyes. He tilted his head upward, stretched, and rolled his neck.
After a deep inhalation Ty began to focus on his breath. He pushed each inhale deep into the bottom of his belly. When he opened his eyes a sable-skinned woman was sitting by his side on the bench. She had long ebon hair with bright red streaks throughout its length. “You’re not much to look at,” the woman quipped.
Ty noticed the woman’s smooth features. She had thin lips and a nose that was small. It pointed slightly upward at the tip. The woman was beautiful, but her startling presence shook Ty.
The Traveler snapped, “Who are you? What do you want?” He didn’t intend for his words to sound so aggressive, but he was at a loss.
The woman’s lips twitched straight, then returned to their previous smiling position. Despite her effort at friendliness her eyes had hardened. “I’m talking to you, good looking.”
The woman stood up. She was wearing a tight red blouse over a jet cami. She wore tight pants and a pair of black athletic sneakers. Ty didn’t respond. She continued, “Okay…Let’s walk, Traveler.”
Ty wanted to be angry. He was growing tired of people calling him Traveler. He was exhausted at these unusual games. With the exception of Glitch and his gambit in the woods, no one had snuck up on Ty in a long time. Glitch had needed his illusion to do it. Ty wondered how this striking woman had approached him so easily, so quietly. Her copper eyes narrowed into slits as she waited for him to stand with her.
He couldn’t be angry however. He was growing increasingly curious at this bizarre course of events. He made his decision and stood up. “Alright,” he finally let out.
“The name’s Genevieve, but anyone we’ll meet will call me Blanks.”
“Blanks? That’s an odd name,” Ty attempted to keep his expression passive. His awe at the incredible beauty of the woman betrayed him. “What’s your trick, Blanks?”
Blanks sneered at the question. “Trick?…You’ve been in Glitch-mode for too long.”
She made the next statements to herself as much as to Ty, “Glitch has trouble accepting himself as one of the good guys.” She went on, “He is one of the good guys…He’s just not much of a good guy.”
Blanks sighed deeply, letting the air out of her lungs. She stared off at some distant nothing. Ty noticed the woman’s petite breasts move up and down with her breath. His eyes scanned down her rounded hips and long legs. He stared at the beautiful woman for far too long.
Blanks interrupted, “I’m not that type of girl, Traveler. Plus you’re gonna need like…” she looked Ty up and down, “…five or six showers before you could even think about stepping to me.”
“Huh?” was all Ty could manage in response.
Blanks smiled at Ty again. “Alright. Let’s do this.”
…and with that Blanks disappeared from sight before Ty could blink.
The Dreamer is an ongoing fiction epic about some very special people.
If you haven’t read the rest check it out here.
John Andreula is an epic fiction writer and a dreamer residing in the foothills of Colorado.
Reach him for commission work or media requests at: