Dandelion (a stand alone)

The darkness is rising. The Order is failing. We are all that is left and The Towers of The Four Corners of The World are the enemy’s prime targets.

Gentlemen, it is time to show the enemy a different face. If we are to win this war, wrath must be the name by which we battle. But let it not be blind wrath. We will fight as men of justice, in a war that is at the brink of destroying the world we protect. Peace and gentle healing have been the way we fought in times past, but when the enemy, the harm, comes in a form destroying anything it touches, the enemy must be put to an end.

Men. We will fight under the four banners: Love, the reason we are here. Wrath, the weapon we fight with. Justice, how we fight with that weapon. And above all else. What holds all together. We fight under the banner of Light.”

Four beds side by side. Each starched sheet pale in the flickering white light above. Sixteen bed legs rest on a hard floor that knows the smell and feel of blue cleaning liquid all too well. Even the air itself feels too scrubbed, too clean. Sterile.

Four nurses, one beside each bed, sit in chairs. They are wearing starched white clothes, and aprons of the same color. Every nurse is bio-mechanically connected to his or her allotted patient. Male with male, female with female, wires run back and forth. They are watching the person in bed. Not just by sight, but feeling the beat and pulse of everything in the patient’s body. If anything is noticed, any change whatsoever, they are to remain and listen, feel, watch. But they must also push a single red button.

The doctors will come. They will stand over the patient, looking at devices that show what each nurse is feeling, as it is recorded after the red button was pushed.

But at this point nothing is happening. The nurses are silent, watching the quiet, undisturbed faces of two men, a woman, and a girl laying in comas. The room’s only noise is a faint pulsing to be heard by the nurses connected to wires. Breathing also whispers through the room.

The male nurse on the far left sits in high tension. His eyes are flickering back and forth over the sleeping face in front of him. His mind constantly checking the sensations in his fingers, heart, and passing in front of his mind itself. A light sweat persists under his chin and behind his ears.

The next nurse behind him has closed her eyes briefly, checking the signs pulsing all around her. Everything is calm so she opens her eyes, glances at the face down by her knees, and looks up at the back of the nurse in front of her. Then his shoulders and neck. The tension.

“Des. Relax. Believe me it’ll be fine. You’re trained to notice things. They’ll show themselves.” Her voice is calm, hoping to reassure, but also backed by a low stern tone. Des doesn’t reply, his shoulders remain the same—until his head lifts.

“Ma’am? You say something?” His voice is tense too. “I didn’t know we could talk.” He glances at the door.

“Ma’am? Did you just call me ma’am?” she says. A smile pushes its way to her lips. Slight on the surface, but there.

“No ma’am—yes ma’am—I don’t—”

“Call me Rain and we’re gonna get along just fine.” Her voice is flippant. Even jolly.

“Ms. Rain, I was given a job. And I am not gonna mess up because some–” His eyes flicker down at the face. “Oh no!”

“Des?” Rain says.

“Oh crap–” His dark brown eyes are jumping back and forth all over the body.

“Push the button. Des! push the button!”

We’ve been pushed back to the last four towers, and one is failing. We cannot lose it. The stakes are not only death and darkness, but the world falling into decay, and the light being extinguished. If The Order fails, the enemy will gain a foothold as never held before

“Men, I’m afraid our power is failing—but fear not. For though our power may fail, The Light will endure. Darkness cannot overtake it. We fight to the death, but not the end.”

Four beds side by side. Each starched sheet pale in the flickering white light above. Sixteen bed legs rest on a hard floor that knows the smell and feel of blue cleaning liquid all too well. Even the air itself feels too scrubbed, too clean. Sterile.

Three nurses. Three patients. And silence. It drapes over everything.

Rain stares at the wall, and then glances down at the empty bed just past the bed of her patient. There should be another nurse between the two beds. There should be another patient, but he never had a chance.

“You couldn’t have stopped it, Des,” she whispers. Tears form in her eyes. I wish it had been mine instead.

“You gotta focus, Rain,” says a voice behind her.

“Barto—I distracted him.”

Barto’s sigh whispers across the room. He closes his eyes and says:

“My charge, my patient, my responsibility. Des was fresh out of school and given one of the most intense jobs. For him. We don’t feel the same ’cause we’ve been doing it for so long. Reena here’s done it longer than I,” he glances back at the woman whose solemn eyes watch her patient carefully. She never speaks and has never been able to. Barto looks back at the shoulders of the human on the other side of his patient’s bed. They carry so much weight “But Des had something that I’ve not seen from a nurse in quite some time. He saw his patient as a human on the verge of death, with a soul. For us it’s easy to look down and see a battery about to die. Or a vehicle running on the last fumes. Now, we don’t know who these people are. But we know we’re in a complex, three hundred feet beneath the surface. They put us in this room, giving access to five others, and orders not to leave unless given special permission. Whoever it is we’re watching over, they’re important enough to keep hidden away. Let’s see this job that way. We’re keeping this nation—no matter how small and compressed—alive. Let’s live with that hope driving us forward.”

When he finishes, Barto sees the back of his colleague straighten. She nods, and bows her head. He can only guess that her eyes are closed as she studies the pulses traveling through the wires all around her.

A gasp comes from behind him, from silent Reena, and Barto’s fears are only confirmed when three doctors rush into the room, encircling the bed behind him. But just before the door closes, in the bright hallway outside, Barto sees men and women rushing back and forth. Red lights pulse near the hallway ceiling. But the door closes, cutting him off from the chaos. God—help us.

“We are failing. With so few left, so few strong, we are fighting on the edge of a dark chasm, and without the strength to resist. Ever our feet slip closer to the dark abyss. Hold strong, if only for short while. Fall is inevitable, but we are not helpless. We fight for Love, with Wrath, Justly, by the power of Light. We fight from two towers, two keeps, both before a bottomless pit that is growing every—oh no!—we’ve been cut off from the second tower. Come. Draw your swords. To the end.”

Four beds side by side. Each starched sheet pale in the flickering white light above. Sixteen bed legs rest on a hard floor that knows the smell and feel of blue cleaning liquid all too well. Even the air itself feels too scrubbed, too clean. Sterile.

Two nurses. Waiting in solemnity.

They push on through the hours, faces grave. The flickering lights above show the pale faces of both of them. Bodies weary with exertion. Every pulse is felt, and tired minds work to pay attention to every beat of his and her patient’s heart.

No relief has come in the past seven hours, and Barto’s chin dips. His head sinks down farther, but jerks up. “Rain—something’s going on. No relief is coming. And I can’t fall asleep on the job.” When no reply comes he raises his voice. “Rain!”

Her head jumps. “What! Oh my—I fell asleep.” Rain’s shoulders relax. “She’s fine.”

She speaks to her patient. “My dear girl, don’t you die on me. If anything happens, we’ll have these doctors in here in a jiffy. They’ll make sure you don’t die.”

“No.” Barto’s whisper barely makes it to her ears. At first she thinks he’s agreeing, but maybe not. He keeps whispering. “There’s no hope. The doctors haven’t made it in time. They’re too busy, all they can do is record. They’ve not been ready to save any lives.”

“Barto, don’t you do that to me. When this fine young lady wakes up I’m gonna ask what her name is. And when she tells me, I’ll reassure her that everything will be fine. And Barto. I’m gonna use her name.”

“Rain, I can’t live with that hope and watch it slip away.” His voice is tired but far from tears. And he knows that on his fellow nurse’s face, tears will be running down. “Then comes the question. Do I even bother pushing the button? Do I let the doctors come in and take notes, only to watch my patient die? Or do I hold his hand and let him pass away in dignity?” Barto says this last question like a statement.

“Bart. We gotta try to save ’em. Both of us are trained to save people.” She turns her head so as to speak over her shoulder at her partner. “Des panicked, but I thinks it’s because he was confused. I saw something on his patient’s face. The man looked to be waking up. You know what that means? We gotta help ’em wake up.”

She turns all the way around in her chair, looking Barto directly in the face.

“You’re just tired and imagining,” he says, watching his patient with a sad quiet look.

“No Barto. Don’t do it.”

Barto shakes his head. He reaches down to his hand and starts pulling the wires out of their inserts, which wrap around his fingers. “It’s too late for this one. He’s gone.”

The tired nurse stands up, pulls off the rest of the wires, and walks from the room. The female nurse can only watch in silent indignation. Anger. Wrath. She would have stepped away from her patient and and chased the man down… but something pulls her back to her task.

A faint strength to the pulse. She turns back and leans forward. Yes, it’s there. Now would be time to push the button. But she doesn’t. And the nurse remembers her training. All of it.

“The third tower fell. We couldn’t hold it and now the very foundations of our own are shaking. I don’t know how much longer it can hold out. So bold in heart we—no—I. I am the last one. So I smile in writing this, knowing that I will step out the gates to battle the darkness. Tears? Yes. But I wield brilliant sword. And any brilliant sword to go down in history needs a good name. Wrath. I fight with Wrath. My armor I’ll name Justice. My people I love, and with the strength of Light.”

Four beds side by side.

One nurse and one patient.

“What’s your name baby?”

She waits breathless, tearful.

“Baby? Are you there?”

Still no answer. The girl is sound asleep. One last time, on the verge of breakdown, the nurse says:

“Hey—it’s okay to wake up. You’re safe with me. Please—PLEASE tell me your name.”

A knight in brilliant armor, with a flaming red sword, strides from the keep’s gate. He swings the glowing blade and the darkness retreats. It is fearful, but a burning resentment keeps it from full retreat.“The flame called Wrath must be extinguished!”

A single wraith leaps forward, swinging whips of blackness. It flicks forward and the long twisting weapon lashes around—a shield. A shield of a guard, wounded but standing. Standing before the soldier in brilliant armor. “BACK, BEAST!” is his shout. He jerks the shield back, pulling the whips from their master. With a shout the guard slams his shield into the wraith and picks up a whip. An orange glow travels from his arm, through his hand, and down the twisting cords. They writhe as the darkness is pushed out, and the guard runs forward, straight at the darkness, carrying his shield and the weapon of his enemy. He runs bright with a single spark, though weary. But but it is light.

So the knight with the sword springs into the darkness, after the guard, and together they fight. Everywhere the man with the spark goes, those wounded or weary find strength and step from hiding. They fight onward. Onward because of a single person, who found strength in the darkness, and has love. A light in a black abyss.

“Dandelion,” the girl whispers.

The nurse stops rocking. Her weeping changes. She hugs the girl tight, whose little voice spoke in the darkest time.

A little light. But even so, every effort of sweat and tears she’d put into keeping the girl alive, was worth it. “Dandelion. What a beautiful name. Dandelion, everything’s gonna be alright.”

And the nurse remembes a poem. A poem from before she’d taken this job, many years ago. One of the nation’s leaders was soon to have a child, and sent out the poem as a clue to the child’s name. But that was before the whole family disappeared. And then the war.

“I have learned a valuable lesson. One that all should hear and all should learn. That when the world stands at the brink of being taken by darkness; when love is sparse, wrath is weak, and justice is suppressed, it is light only that brings those things back. Light fuels them all. Light holds them together. Without light, we have nothing. Light, the seed of all things good. And even the smallest spark can set a fire that burns so bright no darkness withstands it.”

Your name is green and strong,

Your face beaming in and like the sun,

Your strength is that of a weed,

But beautiful, most bright.”

-President Nelson-

Grow up green and grow up strong,

with strength like a weed.

Carry a face of beaming grace and beauty.

Of yellow fire, like the sun.

My little Dandelion

-Rain Lovette-

7 thoughts on “Dandelion (a stand alone)

  1. I totally agree!! I love how in writing you can write your soul on the page and people can see a part of you they might never see if they didn’t read your fiction. I love how sometimes in stories I can find myself in the pages of a book, and I guess it reminds me that I’m not alone. If somebody could write what I’ve always felt and never been able to put into words, then I’m not the only one. It is incredibly rewarding to be able to not just have this experience as the reader, but also the writer.
    Anyway, you’re welcome! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. O.K. Well, I’ll be looking forward to seeing more up on here!!
    And yeah, I know what you mean about needing a break… When my laptop broke last year I had to take a several month break from writing (which was painful) and let my poor bloggie rest in peace. I aim to someday get back to it… Someday…
    But points for you! 1. Your blog did not die. 2. You got your first draft finished!! *Applause*
    Congratulations!!! I hope I can read it someday!!! I really like your writing style, so a whole book of it should really be something! Keep on writing, with your style you could end up on my picky list of favorite authors. 😉 Seriously, you write that well.
    P.S. (Precaution. Sentence.) I tried to comment earlier and I think I didn’t push the post comment button or something like that, but if my old comment is still floating around somewhere where I can’t see it that’s why there would be two comments saying just about the same thing. XD


    1. Thanks! 😀 That’s really cool… I hope you can read my book someday too. Writing is one of those tasks that’s hard sometimes, but when it’s not dragging, it is SO rewarding! And one of my favorite parts is the feeling stories bring. In the best of books (The LOTR and Ender’s Game [for example]) the author let’s you see the characters, not as if you’re with them in real life, but letting you see flashes of their emotion and thought, that set the mood and tone, working at the reader’s mind. It’s a thin line to walk, and one of my biggest goals.

      Again, thank you for your kind words.


  3. Oh wow… *Shivers*
    Wordsmith…. This is my favorite short story of yours now. This one or Singing of Light (because that one is so me and music). This one was chilling though, I loved how it jumped back and forth, using the same beginning… I loved it!!! The poem reminded me of the way the translation of Now We Are Free reads.
    Now, does this mean you’re back?? You’ve gone and dropped a ring into Mount Doom, but now you’ve returned to writing?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thanks! I had a lot of fun writing this one; it’s one of my favorites too. 🙂

      And in answer to your last question… sorta. I won’t be as consistent. It won’t be every month (as far as I know), but I will show up every once in a while with a new story, Lord willing.

      If it makes you feel any better, I never actually stopped writing. I just needed a break from the world of social media, which was really helpful. But I can tell you, I’m glad to be back to the blog. It’s been a joy to keep running, and any thought of it dying makes me sad. So your encouragement is so… courage building.

      (P.S. I recently finished the first draft on my novel. That was one of the biggest factors in me taking a break from the blog. So now working on the second draft, I’ll probably write short fiction here and there, some of which should make it to the blog.)


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