The Protector Chronicles - Redemption
Chapter 15: How Does He Do It?
Copyright© 2013 by Misguided Child
"Thank you Joe," Jonas said as he watched Sheila and Liz disappear around the huge Oak. "I really appreciate you letting me spend this time with them. I know I'm still in the hospital and I should be getting out today but, it makes me feel stronger when I spend time with them."
"I understand Jonas," Joe replied. A sweet, fragrant breeze lifted the old man's wild white hair in all directions.
The spry old man hopped up from where he had been sitting on the ground stroking a small rose bush. Jonas had been watching him and was amused at the way the thorns seemed to bend away from his hands as he straightened it and stroked its branches.
"Actually, your connection to this place does make you stronger," Joe said. "And Jonas," Joe continued in a warning tone. "You will need your strength when you leave the hospital." Joe seemed to consider something for a moment then said, "Something is being hidden from me. The Red Agent isn't there but one directly under his authority is. Expect something when you leave the hospital today."
"OK," Jonas said as he considered who would be with him and who he would need to protect.
Joe smiled and the world lit up with his pleasure. "That is what I like about you Jonas," Joe said as he patted Jonas's shoulder. "I just warned you of an ambush and your first thought was how to protect anyone with you. You didn't even have a thought about protecting yourself. Sheila and Liz's faith in you is justified."
Jonas shrugged and said, "You are already doing everything that can be done to protect me. If you can't protect me then nothing I can do or worry about will make a difference."
Joe nodded still smiling then he asked thoughtfully, "Remember the ways I said I could help you?"
"Yes," Jonas said nodding. "You said Protectors are faster mentally and physically. We are stronger. We heal faster, and we're luckier than normal men. Plus we don't age and we can see and read peoples auras."
"Exactly," Joe said with satisfaction. "So far you have used your ability with auras to some advantage and are using the other attributes very well. Reading auras is the only advantage the Adversary's Agents don't have because auras are in my domain. You share the other attributes with the Red Agents. I believe that you will be facing a Red Agent very soon. I can't see him because the Adversary can shield him and his actions from me. Men the Red Agent orders directly are also shielded but not as thoroughly. I can get a sense of what they are planning based on the actions of those around him but not under his control. That is why I believe something will happen when you leave the hospital. I also believe the Red Agent you will be facing soon is well versed in the attributes the two of you share."
"Okay," Jonas said thoughtfully. "Do you have any suggestions?"
"Yes Jonas," Joe said. "Be more aware of the ability to see auras to look for danger. Think about your strength and speed in body and mind. You aren't a super human but you are at the very peak of the scale of what humans are capable of in terms of strength and speed. The only advantage you may have over your opponent is that you had some natural skill in those areas before you became a Protector. The disadvantage you will have is that your opponent will have perfected those skills by long use as a Red Agent and you have not. The Adversary's Agents gain a certain animal cunning and instinct from the Adversary. My Agents gain an advantage in intelligence and planning. You are limited in the destruction that you cause and lives that you take but the Adversary's Agents are not. They are ruthless and they revel in death and destruction. Think about the assistance that I can give you; the attributes you have as a Protector. Find ways to use them and perfect them because you will need every edge that you can get when you face the Red Agent."
"Okay," Jonas said doubtfully. He paused for a moment then said, "You make it sound like I don't have much of a chance of surviving my meeting with this Red Agent."
"Nothing is guaranteed Jonas. I don't know that you will win," Joe replied seriously. He looked deep in thought for a moment. Everything in the garden seemed to pause in that moment. The birds grew quiet. The sound of the bugs in the grass stilled. The breeze stilled. "Think of some of the demons you have heard of and read about in the Bible," Joe continued. "Think of the ferocity and strength they displayed. Those stories do have a basis in fact. One of those stories is what you could be facing. Your chances for survival are slim simply because you aren't completely acclimated to your new attributes because you have had less than two weeks in the physical world to learn to use them. The Red Agent will have had years to perfect them. Understanding where your weakness lies will allow you to focus on them and strengthen them."
"Okay Joe," Jonas said hesitantly. After a moment he continued. "I don't know if you can answer something for me but I have been curious about it."
"I will answer if I can," Joe said with a smile.
"How do you do it? What I mean is, if you are giving me these extra abilities then why don't you just snap your fingers so that I would have them? Everything I know or think I know about you says that all you have to do is say it and it's done. How are you giving me these extra abilities if it isn't a case of simply snapping your fingers?"
Joe gave Jonas a startled look for a moment then laid back his head and laughed. It wasn't a laugh like Jonas had ever heard before. It was as if the whole world was laughing with him. While Joe was laughing Jonas actually understood the smiles that Dolphins seemed to have. He understood why no one with an ounce of compassion could keep from smiling when a baby gurgled. In those moments Jonas understood why joy was such an important component in the world.
Joe finally got himself under control and reached up and put a hand on Jonas's shoulder. "Thank you Jonas," Joe said with a grin. "Sometime I forget how delightful humans are. I want you to know that not one Protector..." He paused with his head cocked to one side as he thought about how to continue then said, "I have had Protectors since your ancestors first ventured out of their caves. Not one of them asked me HOW I could give them the attributes of Protectors. They have asked me many other things but never how." Joe chuckled again and said, "There really isn't a secret to it so I'll tell you. I didn't do anything other than allow you to see how to gain them. It isn't a miracle the way you think of miracles. All humans have those capabilities and more built into the gene pool. Take the auras for example. What do you think babies are looking at before they learn not to see auras? I reminded your mind how to notice them but that was all. It just takes time to learn to use the ability after finding out that you have it. The Adversary can't give that to his agents because babies are the pinnacle of innocence. The Adversary can't even imagine something as innocent as a baby can have an advantage like that. Quicker thinking and movement are already built in too but they haven't been learned so you have to perfect them a little after I pointed your mind in the right direction. You already have a natural aptitude in that area so you may not see the change as much as you would in other areas."
Joe looked Jonas up and down as if gauging his physical makeup before saying, "Added strength is built in the same way but getting access to it is a little more difficult. You are already very fit so that helps. Think about the stories you hear about a mother lifting a car off her child. All humans have that strength built in except it usually requires a traumatic event to bring it out. You needed to learn to use it without needing an emergency to access it. The healing and long life is actually the same thing. I guess you could say I cheated a little there but not much. It was just a matter of adjusting a few peptides and gene replication. Men are already figuring out how to do those things and in another hundred of your years I won't have to give them to my Protectors. They will already have them because of scientific advancements. Luck is the only point that you could say I really take direct action but then, so does the Adversary."