Earthbound: A Hero Chosen (book 1)

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PSY 23: Blue, Blue




“Happy Happy!” the pair of cultists shouted.

“I said get out of my way!” I ran at them as they charged.

We met in the middle of the ramp down from the porch. One swung his paintbrush and I held up my bat to block. The paint covered bristles splashed against the Sand Lot Bat, but just for a moment, because I brought the bat around and into the stomach of the first Happy Happyist.

“Oof!” he cried and stumbled back, falling plat on his back.

“Oh no!” the woman cultists cried, “Help!”

I glared at her and took a single step. No other cultists came to her rescue, but I heard a loud CACAW and looked up in time to see the dive-bombing me. I ducked and the possessed black bird flew over my head and I heard it crash into the ramp with a screech.

The woman cultist dipped her brush in the bucket of paint next to her and slashed it across at me. I hopped back and paint splashed the grass. She looked up at me through the eye slits of the hood, and I could see fear in her eyes.

I spun the bat around and held it to my side, ready to lash out and strike.

“Help meeeeee!” the woman cried and turned, trying to flee.

What she didn’t count on was the bucket of paint that belonged to her buddy. She tripped over the body of a crow or two, and then fell straight forward with her head landing in the bucket. Blue paint flew up in the air and landed all over her. I waited a brief moment, and when she didn’t get back up I knew I had won.

“Pokey!” I shouted and leaped over the sea of deceased crows and took off toward the cave that led back to Happy Happy Village.

When I stepped into the cave, I immediately faced a group of three more cultists. Each of them wore their hoods over their faces and all wielded the seemingly magic paintbrushes—unless of course it was the paint that was magic.

“Come on, guys,” I said. “We don’t need to fight. Just let me get to Pokey and Carpainter and we’ll call it even.”

The first stepped forward and held his paintbrush to his side, like I had my bat.

“You won’t get anywhere near Master Pokey or Father Carpainter!” he cried stoically.

“You know, I really did try,” I said, and held my bat to my side again.

We stared into each other’s eyes and had a classic style showdown. On my side I was cool and collected, a hint of a smile on my face, but on his side, he was shaking so bad his paint was going everywhere.

“Come on!” the guy next to him said, “Hurry up and take care of the kid. We have things to paint to make the whole world blue!”

“Yeah!” the third, chimed in.

I stared straight into the eyes of the cultist, whose eyes darted about. He wanted to find a way out of this mess now that he was nominated to attack me alone. Too bad for him, he was going down either way.

“BOO!” I shouted threw my hand out at him.

He cried, dropping his paintbrush and his paint can, and ran away full speed.

“Where you goin’ Steve?” the dumb one asked, sounding like a nimrod.

“No matter,” the second guy said, “I’ll take care of this punk!”

He picked up ‘Steve’s brush and held one in each hand. He did an awkward squat to dip both brushes into the separate paint buckets, then came back up and shook his head.

“Run now, kid, or else!”

“Or else what?” I asked.

“You’ll be blue!” he snapped back.

I rolled my eyes at his wonderful comeback. Then without another warning the mad man with the dual brushes came running at me, flailing them about as if he were sissy fighting.

I pointed my bat at him and said, “Hypnosis.”

His eyes suddenly closed, and he fell flat forward like a board, eating dirt. The idiot behind him looked down and then looked at me.

“No fair!” he cried, “You’re using magic and stuff!”

“Not magic,” I said, “Psychic powers. THANK you.”

I rushed forward, darting and thrusting the bat into his gut. My attack connected and the man doubled over. I brought up my knee into his jaw and with a CARACK, he slumped to the side and into the dirt.

“These guys are so lame.” I muttered.

I quickly picked up my pace, and found my way back out of the other side. I stepped into the village. The sun was beginning to set over the hills to the west and it would soon be night. I had to hurry and get the key from Carpainter—and I hoped that rolie-polie Pokey was there too!

I had taken no more than five yards of steps when more Happy Happyists appeared from around the front side of the church of Happyism.

This time there were four.

“Come on!” I growled.

They all started forward, and another four appeared behind them. They were coming out of the woodworks! I didn’t have time for such nonsense, so I thrust out my palms.

“ROCKIN’!” I shouted.

The multi-colored, crackling lightning energy shot out and hit the entire group. Each one of them tumbled back and rolled several feet.

“Excuse me, tourist,” a woman asked.

I quickly turned around, ready to strike, but instead I found a pretty girl who was maybe in her twenties. She stood taller and looked down at me.

“Um… I’m kinda busy here.” I told her.

“It’s okay, it’ll only take a moment,” she said, “I’m collecting donations to help protect the world from contaminants.”

Jake A. Strife

Edited: 15.10.2019

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