(By way of explanation, this is one chapter pulled out of a much larger book that I am in the process of writing. There are four main characters, three of them having their own interaction with a mysterious person known as "AO". In some mysterious way, AO is the thing the three have in common.
I have been working on this story for about three years. It is my first "fiction" work.
With that being said, here is the chapter, which is a sample of my writing.)
Of Ignored Notes and Missed Signals
There was a sudden light in the room. Maybe not sudden, gradual might be more like it. It seemed to come from a distance, not a huge distance, but still a distance. The light seemed to be in no hurry.
It seemed sudden to Alex because he only came to moments after the light entered the room. Came to might not exactly be accurate, because he was still half asleep and groggy and far from coherent. He felt the adrenalin rush of being suddenly jolted out of a sound, although very troubled sleep.
The light, and the person who was holding it, as it appeared, stood towering in the doorway.
Alex moaned and rolled over and lifted an arm to shield his eyes from the light.
“Who… who are you?”
“A friend of yours.”
“You have been hurt.”
“I stepped on this damned glass on the floor.”
“That is pretty apparent.” The being with the light paused for a moment.
“Aren’t you going to ask me how the glass got all over the floor? Argh, damn it, my foot. Argh.”
“I don’t need to ask you, it is pretty apparent,” the being said.
There was a long pause.
Finally, Alex groaned, “It would be nice if you would help me get this…argh… glass out of my…umph… foot, instead of urmph… just Argh, standing there…”
“I was waiting until you asked.”
“Isn’t it…argh… obvious that… ahh…oww… I need (gasp) help?”
“Then…argh…get over here and ….owww… help me! Like now!”
The being came over to where Alex lay, sprawled out on the floor, amid the shards of broken glass and corks and bottle tops that lay helter skelter where they landed after he had flung them to the floor. The being knelt at Alex’s side and took the bloodied foot in his hand.
It was only then that Alex saw who the being was.
AO grunted in acknowledgment and attended to Alex’s mangled foot. “Shhh… just sit still. Lay down if you have to. This is going to hurt like hell.” AO said presently.
For a few moments there was silence, since AO was occupied with digging the glass out of Alex’s foot and Alex was kept busy grimacing and gritting his teeth to try to ward off the sharp pain.
“I told you it would hurt, terribly.”
“Yeah, it hurts like heck, you have no idea.”
“This glass is wickedly lodged into your foot. You must have been really going for it.” AO said after a few moments.
There was a pause as AO tugged the glass first one way and then another, in a very painful attempt to dislodge the stubborn shard of glass.
“Argh, Ow. OWWW. AO!!!”
AO held the shard in his hand. “I am sorry it was so painful. But it is done now.”
Alex gingerly moved his bloody foot and wiggled his toes cautiously. “You are not going anywhere for a while.” AO stated the obvious, somewhat matter of factly. “And by the way, I do have an idea how terribly your foot hurts.”
“But… but, how did you know?”
“How did I know what?”
“How did you know I needed help and was in danger.”
“I know because of who I am, Alex.”
“Wait a minute. Is this a dream again?”
“Oh no, Alex, you are about as awake as it is possible to be. And I am as real as it is possible to be.” AO said with a laugh.
“But you have never appeared like this.”
“No? I haven’t, not to you, anyway.”
“You mean you appear differently to… wait, just who ARE you?”
“AO. Who else would I be?”
Alex rolled his eyes at this. “My foot is still in terrible pain.”
“I know. We need to attend to that.”
“But I really have to go to the doctor, a hospital, really,” grunted Alex, feeling, as he did, the throb throbbing of every heartbeat in his mangled foot.
“Oh, so you want a doctor.”
“AO, I NEED a doctor, even I can see that I will probably need stitches.”
“Well, if we don’t do something quickly, soon you will not have a foot to worry about. You will have an infected limb that will have to be amputated to talk about. And we really do not have time for that. Especially not now.” He took Alex’s foot in his hands.
“And just what do you think you are doing?” Alex spluttered.
“You asked me who I really am just now, didn’t you?”
“And, if you allow me, I am going to show you who I am.”
“How are you going to do that?”
“Like this.” AO took Alex’s mangled foot in both hands and hunched over slightly and blew softly on the foot.
“What are you do--- What is that?!”
There were two reasons for Alex’s response. One, was the sudden glow that appeared in AO’s hands and enveloped Alex’s foot. The other was a strange, warm vibrating sensation that began in the foot AO was holding but soon spread throughout Alex’s entire body.
“What? What is that? What are you doing, AO?”
“I am showing you who I am. I am a healer, your healer.”
Alex looked at his foot. No, he stared at his foot. The gash was gone. The ugly, dark blood that had poured out of the gash was gone. The pain, that had been searing and almost mind-numbing, was gone. Gone. Alex could hardly believe it.
“AO, How on earth did you do that?”
AO gently put the now completely healed foot down and placed his hands on Alex’s shoulders, one hand on each shoulder. “I am your healer; I am also your joy. Breath in my joy, for it is your joy.”
AO began to laugh. Great, hearty, gut wrenching laughs. Almost tear inducing laughs. He laughed until the walls echoed with laughter just as they reflected the light.
Suddenly Alex felt it. A tiny, almost shy giggle formed in his throat and paused there, as if asking, or needing permission to come out.
AO poked Alex in the side and suddenly he was on the floor again, as waves of this strange sensation called joy flowed over him and through him and completely enveloped him and, simply put, overwhelmed him.
“This is… this is… this is so much better than scotch or anything else I have taken to try to fight the pain or anything.” Alex gasped finally, out of breath.
“I know. My Father’s joy is overwhelming, in fact, it is purely intoxicating.”
“But have you, I mean, has it been like this the whole time?”
“The whole time? What do you mean by that?”
“Have you been a… a healer this entire time, and only now are letting me in on it?”
“Yes, I have been a healer, and more, this entire time, Alex.”
“But why did I not ever know, or see any of this? Why did you never show me this part of who you are?”
“Believe me; I have been trying for as long as you have known who I am, and in fact, longer than that, Alex.”
“But why did you never tell me…?”
“You never asked.”
There was silence for a few moments.
“But there have been clues, Alex.”
“Clues? What clues?”
“In the text messages, in the dreams, in your visions, in the things you have encountered and been successful in and even in the things you haven’t been too successful at.”
“The text messages?”
“Yes, think back for a moment.” “Okay…”
“How many times were you left without at least a hint of a suggestion of how to get out of the scrape you were in or how to get out of the predicament you had gotten into?”
“Well, there were a few times that the hints and suggestions were pretty vague, AO.”
“Yes, I know, and I also know why.”
“Why do you do things like that?”
“I want you to pursue the answers.”
“But it would be easier if you just plain said.”
“Easier, yes. But, as the man I know you are, is easier even the point?”
“What does that mean?”
“Would you feel respected if I spoon fed you the answers, Alex?”
“No, I suppose not.”
“And the more you keep responding and interacting with the texts…” AO prodded.
“The more pertinent and detailed the information that you seem willing to give me, AO.”
“Yes. And the dreams, and, if you want to call them that, the visions, too.”
“What do you mean, ‘If I want to call them that’?”
“Just that. Some, maybe most of the ‘visions’ you have of me are really me.”
“Of course. Or do you think that this, right here and right now is just a figment of your imagination and the product of a bottle or two too much scotch?”
“Well, this time it definitely was not because of scotch. I had no scotch tonight. But that much is obvious, isn’t it.”
“Pretty obvious, yes. All I would have to do is look around.” AO waved his hand, taking in all the glass on the floor. “But enough of that. You need proof that I am who I said I am.”
He stood to his feet, and motioned Alex to do the same.
Alex looked at him somewhat quizzically.
“Do you want your proof?”
“Yes of course I want the proof, AO, it is just that my foot…”
“Your foot? Your foot will provide the proof. Here, stand up.”
Slowly, gingerly, Alex hoisted himself to his knees and then got on one foot, and then tried to move the injured foot.
Except it was not injured. Alex blinked and wiggled his toes and moved the foot that had just been injured and had suddenly been restored back to full strength.
He looked up.
AO had disappeared into the night.
Moments later Alex heard his cell phone vibrate. There was a text message from AO.
“;) AO” was all it said, and as Alex stared at the phone screen and wiggled the toes of his newly restored foot, he knew that was all that had to be said.
He typed a quick text in reply “K Thx. Thx so much. Alex”