A Catastrophic Day Ch. 02

byloquere©

Another team moved in and picked up the body putting it into an elongated, metallic, medical-like coffin case. Similar teams moved in to rescue their fallen brothers and sisters.

The medical wing buzzed with activity. Fortunately most lives were saved but a great deal of attention was paid to the room surrounded by armoured guards. Dr Shelton was busy extracting the Haloogan from Jacob Sr's body.

Soon it was over. Jacob lay on unconscious on a hospital bed while the Haloogan was placed in a long metallic tube that was escorted by Captain Tassel and the armoured team to the belly of the spacecraft. The tube was thrown into one of the Spacecraft's cores where it disintegrated into dust.

-----

Captain Tassel sat by his father's bed his eyes glued to a handheld digital screen. Images of his father and him blurring by until he slowed the pace of his childhood slide show as he came to an image of his father much older than the teen lying in the bed next to him at present.

In the picture was Captain Tassel when he was just an Ensign receiving an uncharacteristic hug from his father who was adorned in his Fleet Admiral's regalia. The picture was taken on the Bridge of the Planetary Federation Spacecraft Earth 2 just after its commissioning. He remembered his white-haired father had looked at him that day saying "Forget the rules, listen to your pulse. It'll guide you true." Captain Tassel laughed because it had been that advice that led him to shooting his father a day ago.

"God, four years of the most intense brain-washing ever at the academy and you undid it all by finally giving me advice," Captain Tassel said to his now awaking father. The Captain stopped his verbal outburst upon seeing that his father to be was coming round.

Captain Tassel stood up and moved toward him.

"So?" asked the bed-bound younger Jacob.

"I don't know if you know?"

"I think I know but it hurts to think so why don't you tell me what I should know."

The Captain took a deep breath. Extending his hand he smiled saying "Well perhaps we should start again. Hello, I'm Captain Jacob Tassel and apparently you're my father."

The younger-looking Jacob Sr, no longer restrained like before, took his son's hand and shook it, a tingling shiver running down his spine.

"Shit!" he exclaimed.

"You're telling me," replied the Captain.

"How'd this all happen? You screwed up didn't you?" young Jacob said reminding Captain Tassel instantly of words his father might say.

Captain Tassel froze. A part of him wanted to laugh and the other part wanted to yell out the pent up anger he harbored for his father. Instead he talked straight, the way his father eventually would.

"We were attacked by an enemy and then encountered a spatial anomaly that we were sucked into," the Captain said pointedly.

"I was joking with the screwed up crack. Time travel... so that's real? Can you get back?" Jacob asked all wide-eyed.

"Yes and yes, our science team just figured it out. We fixed the Bridge that you fucked up, hah hah. We've also beamed up the downed spacefighter you entered and we were able to falsify a cover story using matter regeneration technology. Essentially we replaced the downed spacefighter with an asteroid. However, dealing with you is a whole entirely different thing."

"What do you mean?" younger Jacob asked. "What do you mean deal with me, I can be trusted."

"It would be impossible to expect you to carry on your life as if this never happened."

"So what are you going to do?" Jacob asked feeling sleepy once more.

"You're going to fall asleep and when you wake up none of this will have ever happened."

"What?" Jacob asked for the last time before beginning to fade away.

"One last thing, don't name me after you it's confusing as hell and it's narcissistic." With that younger Jacob was in a deep sleep.

-----

The younger Jacob Sr woke up in his parent's cottage, the sun beaming in from the windows with the imposed falsified memory of a weekend of swimming and fishing in his mind. He headed home not questioning the disappearance of two entire days. His mom's Infinity was in the driveway and his phone was full of messages. His parents were back from their cruise.

Moments after stepping into his house he was hugged by his mom. "God, we were so worried about you when you didn't answer your cell. You are in so much trouble."

Jacob's dad came in seconds later rattling off punishments.

"You are grounded for the next week!"

His mom echoed her approval and went off to finish unpacking. Jacob's father shot his son a look of pride assuming his son had an indulgent weekend. Jacob chose not to tell his father his prom date dumped him and that he spent his time at the cottage.

His dad put his arm around him. "When your mom and I came back this letter was in the mailbox." His dad was nearly as giddy as Jacob was when he saw the official United States Air Force Academy seal.

Jacob opened the letter as his dad stood watching with his projected hopes. "I... got in to the new advanced division," Jacob said, with his throat cracking up.

As Jacob's accountant father smiled and congratulated his son, all Jacob could think was "don't be a narcissist."

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