Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Chapter 1 Part 1

A Test Of Australian Character – A Test Of Time
Chapter 1A by Tobias Nixon

Davis Lockyer’s 3 bedroom apartment,
7:02:09 Rosebay by the water

Davis Lockyer left the realm of dreams. He was a daywalker once more and an emperor no more. He woke gradually, rolling groggily out of his fart sack to hit the smoothly ground.

The alarm clock started buzzing five seconds later, and died just as quickly from a well aimed shoe travelling at close to the speed of sound. His morning routine started... now. One thousand bicycle crunches, then fifty chin-ups from the bar hanging above the bedroom door.

Bam! The Suns up, bright rays burn through the wide open glass, his eyes light up and shift focus. Pushups... always until his arms are burnt and the pain has turned to the numbness that signals the onset of lactic acid induced muscular failure.

Protein, carbs, water; the holy mantra of millions of gym junkies. His body was toned and proportioned. Sculptured so that the limbs and torso were hard and thin like a boxer, with the same amount of body fat.

Lean and quick as his brain processes 3 different channels. Financial news, overnight, overseas aggregated market data and proposals already flowing through from the centralised trading platform that the company ran.

The days trades, the daily grind. He runs. It’s what he does, to unwind and to think. To and from work every day. 10 km in 38 minutes. It wouldn’t get him to the Olympics, but then he didn’t run for others, he ran for himself. Each day to start the grind with a map he built on the way to work.

His mental map for how to get to X. Where X was a giant gold pyramid with Davis sitting on top. Of course being a prodigious runner also helped to burn the long lunch on the way home.

Long lunches were as much a part of business as data analysis and board room brawls. You needed clients with fat bankrolls if you wanted to build the world’s greatest private equity firm.

Muscles bulged while he adjusted to the strain of the final uphill climb on the way to work.

“Whenever your mind imagines a challenge, the world has another, greater one in store for you Davis. Always remember mate, your work is never done until it’s started...”
his uncle Cub’s words.

The words of bear, from the mouth of his brother cub.

“Life was never simple, until it got complicated. Then, when the shit really started, the men stood up and the boys walked away.” 

More words, this time from bear, floating to him like the cool September breeze that billowed over his face as he raced past Rushcutter bay’s foreshore. 

“Why do my words find you? Because of time, and patience.”
 This time the words of cub, but in the voice of bear. 

Sometimes the pain of complete sadness seemed so overwhelming, that he prayed it would engulf him. For to engulf him he felt, would give sanity to an insane world. Sometimes he felt rather than saw a world he could never go back to.

A simpler world, containing people he would never see again, that he wanted so desperately to speak to one last time. Life truly was a one way road, with most people waiting till they were at the end of the street before realising it was too late. But pain, pain was a tangible asset. His to induce and control.

He was near work. Time to put memories of childhood back in his mind box. He remembered what happened when he let emotions get in the way of professional ambition.

Reverie replaced with hunger. Success is the motivating character in the drive to conquer fear. But for Davis failure was the one word he just didn’t understand. Nothing in this life could not be conquered. He knew how to step it up whether by concentration, determination or longer hours at work.

This credo wasn’t universally shared. Most of his work buddies just tried to get through their nine to five workloads. Even so most ended up pulling ten to twelve hour days just to do that.

This was a young man’s game. A game that chewed up and spat out ninety nine for everyone it let slip through.

“If you start with nothing, what you feel is no less real, so when you are finally, truly nothing you will realise there is still so much more.”
 Bear and cub standing in the faintest of shadows their voices in unison and barely a ripple...

His office was a shared cubicle space. Spiralling out from a central lift well. The entire floor of Level 8, 42 Martin Place represented the culmination of eighty years of Techred, Coutil and Banks’ business acumen.

The space above each cubicle dripped with hanging monitors and huge flat panel TVs displaying detailed rate and equity charts and streams of datasets. The odd spare panel beamed the fox sports feed with replays of NRL and AFL games. 

Stock tickers ran the numbers in an endless flow. Clean unadorned charts that zigzagged in response to the ever changing sentiment of that most elusive of personalities, Mr Market.

His desk was more or less a microcosm of this high tech den. The four flat panel monitors and quad core i9 64bit workstation were the tools of his trade. But the twenty thousand dollar custom leather back chair was probably his most substantial, but necessary luxury, he gently reminded himself.

Davis ran the key equities team, which had a wide ranging brief to gain exposure domestically as well as in key Asian markets. The teams research assistant Ronnie came over with his morning macchiato.

“Mmm tanks Ronnie, gotta say mate ya looking unbelievable. How much weight have you lost?”

“Hai! Achtung Davis”


“Why are you about to spill coffee all over that Chart pack?”

“Ficken Hell!”

“Mmm I love it when you try and talk German to me, by the way Friday drinks, ja?”

“Will you bring me jugs of Hahn premium all night, balanced between you, ah Jugs?”

“Nein that would seem unlikely...”

“Ok! It’s a hard skill to master... I’ll give you until the end of the month. By the way where’tcha get this macchiato it’s delicious, just like you”

“Cafe lab on my way from Wynyard they do it well, do they?”

Ronnie smiles in a genuine and intriguing way. She cocks her head looks away then just as she looks back she raises her eyes, making them big and engaging. At this point most male, and some female visitors were putty in her hands.

Gorgeous and highly intelligent research assistants imported from Germany were only one of the many fringe benefits of working for TCB. As companies went TCB tended to take employee satisfaction, and therefore retention, very seriously.

The screens were a steady mixture of green and red. Patterns of capital flow between equities, players and institutions. An eternal war of attrition. His companies positions were a couple of points out in front of the market, a situation that could change at any second.

At thirty two he was already middle aged by the standards of his industry. No touch of grey, Davis loved what he did, and you never needed to stress if you didn’t lose too often he reflected.

“There is only the one true path, hold to the centre”
– Bear.
“The centre is hidden, whichever path you take” –Cub.
“The true path is whichever path gets you to the centre” – Bear.

Davis had what he hoped was only going to be a thirty minute meeting at 10:30. He wanted to get out for lunch, maybe hit up that nice bank teller for some chitchat. But that was only if he could convince his new client to buy his pitch.

The meeting was with a shadowy Lebanese biker. The guy called himself, Bill “Firehead” Kaboul. He preferred “Firehead”. He wanted access to the firms enhanced rates, and, with the kind of flows this guy had promised, Davis’s job was to do anything possible to make that happen.

Davis decided casual and charming was probably the best lead. He was leaning back in his chair, right leg laying loosely across his left, left hand twirling a gold plated pen expertly between his fingers five or six times a second. Overall it was a carefully crafted image of casual anticipation. Davis was smiling a big white toothed grin as Bill entered the room.
The biker seemed more massive and fearsome in real life. Davis reflected photos in the paper had a way of hiding life’s ugliness. Bill farted as he sat down, a deliberate slap down of any inference or deference to the culture of TCB.


“Please to meet you Mr Kaboul. On behalf of my firm TCB I’d like to say how excited we are to be working with your company.”

“Listen...”, FireHead pauses leaning menacingly across the table, slamming his closed right fist like a boulder against the expensive teak table,

“Cut the BS matey. I’m a Black Skull. We don’t represent the kind of business you normally deal with.”
Davis waited several seconds, letting the raw tension of the moment drain away.

“I appreciate that, how can we help?”

“Your firm is looking to expand its operations into Asia with at least three billion dollars in new funding, but in today’s market you’ll never get that kind of wholesale funding and maintain your current profit margins... you’d have to increase TCB’s already impressive returns by another four to five points, which of course everybody knows is impossible.”

“You seem well informed of our current operational strategy Bill, for a biker...”

“Don’t be fooled sonny there are lots of kinds of bikers, the Skulls are an international organisation these days and we aren’t really good at trusting outsiders with our accounting. It’s funny never thought riding a hog would get me into tax law, haw haw haw”

“Impressive, but in all honesty we need alot of money to get the next phase of expansion right, were you looking for a couple of points stake? Our firm also has some other excellent existing funds under management”

“No! You misunderstand, the Skulls will wire you the entire amount you seek.”

Davis outwardly didn’t change, he remained calm, but inside his head a storm was brewing.

“The entire sum? Ok, Not to be rude, but what exactly do you want in return Bill? Why not spread the Skulls money out, minimise their risk for a small cut in profit, I can show you how to get a better than market return on that kind of sum.”

FireHead looked at him deadpan, then let out an enormous belly laugh,

“I think that if I wanted to minimise risks I would not be in the business I am... Davis.”

Davis returned a deadpan expression,

“hmmm, ok, so you’re looking for high yield returns, which is what my firm specialises in. The problem you have though is your going to be investing a large amount of capital. That kind of amount comes with liquidity problems, problems that again our firm is well positioned to assist you with.”
Davis got up and walked towards the glass windows that covered the north wall facing towards the opera house and Sydney harbour.

“For such assistance we will require a fee of eight percent.”

Davis turned to face the much older bikie. His old leather vest reeked of sweat and oil. His girth was so large it rested on the armchair’s arm rests. His hair was rough and blown from thousands of kilometres riding bare back in the hard Aussie sun, wind ripping through him as he rode his ancient Harley machine.

But his eyes. His eyes were precise diamonds that cut straight through Davis. Here was a man that was equally at home at an outback pub brawl, or in one of the cities corporate boardroom brawls.

His eyes contained a simple message, don’t fuck with me, or I will fuck you and everyone you know. Not a boast, just a promise. Old school.

Both parties stared at each other for long minutes, Davis could feel the tension, but this was not the moment to break it.
“Show no weakness, unless you want your balls cut off” – Cub & Bear.

As if by some strange miracle Davis looked over to the left out the massive glazed windows towards the opera house. The sun blazed through, and something else. A strange glint as if from metal. It was metal. A huge metal object, hurtling through space incredibly fast.

Blades whirling at impossible angles. Huge counter rotating blades that scythed through the air towards his window. Davis, even if he knew what he was looking at, which he did not, had no way to process the rapid sequence of events that was currently unfolding.

“Get down mate, nowwwww!” growled Firehead in a guttural snarl.

Davis felt a dull thud, and the rough shoulder of Firehead crashing into his back. Firehead had moved round the table and was in the process of crash tackling the both of them towards the door and the floor in no particular order.

Somewhere extremely close by, Davis felt rather than heard the sound of a massive explosion.  The sound was exquisite torture to the ear. A harpy’s shriek, red hot steel had reached melting point, causing any remaining fuel to explode.

Twisted metal tearing through metal and glass. Jet fuel burning.

A twisted wreckage of what looked like the front of a helicopter coming towards the two of them with impossible speed. Even with Firehead’s tackle they were metres short as the shrieking steel, should, have flattened them like pancakes. In effect it should be cutting them to pieces and then barbequing the leftovers to a blackened charcoaled crisp right about now.

Instead his body was shaking violently. The axis of the room wobbled alarmingly, seeming to reset the horizontal to the vertical. For a moment he sensed rather than saw a ripple effect spread out from the far wall.

The room itself took on a dream like feel. Walls no longer had hard edges.

Firehead was missing, and so was the source of the explosion. There was simply no end to the vibrations that savagely broke through every layer of his being in waves of pain. Then came the fire.

An elemental being of light and energy seemed to engulf the room,

“Nothing escapes, everything burns!” it shrieked at Davis.

It turned its huge dragon like head towards him. Massive overlong arms reached out. Each finger tip was a short lance of fiery molten lava. It wanted to shove those lances through him. It wanted to rip his soul apart. He could hardly move.

This new realm had another dreamlike quality. It was all but impossible to control. His feet felt like they were buried in molasses. Another ripple ran down the far wall.

The timing was just as well. He suddenly felt a burst of energy in the dream and moved rapidly back from the hulking fire daemon that was stalking him across the room. Then the room wobbled again, and cub was there dancing in wisps of smoke.

“Bear says you must hurry young nephew, we will try to hold this thing back, but it is beyond us to do so for very long”, said cub in an ethereal voice.

It echoed from beyond reality. Like ripples across a lake.

Davis cracked a wicked smile wishing he had the power necessary to speak back to Cub, but it was all he could do just to move his legs. The true dreaming had begun. The fire thing cracked its left maw, dripping hot molten droplets to the ground. It was preparing to crush them, battle must be joined.

Its right arm was raised high, as it approached. The slow speed of its advance mirrored the arrogance that raced across the black daemon eyes. Cub was still dancing in the smoke. Davis looked closer and realised he was dancing above a corroboree fire.

Around him the smoke seemed trapped, billowing up his sides but never straying more than a few inches from him. It rose to a point like a burning gas flame. A point that challenged the eyes to follow. Trapped within a cave that was not a cave, in a dream that was no longer a dream. Was the room a cube or a sphere?
Cub lifted both arms palm up, slapping them three times together then pressing them together high above his head. Smoke billowed out of his mouth like words. The smoke words raced together then through each other, until they were apart. Like bees the smoke was chaotic – unable to remain in one place, just as quickly it raced into forming sentences, sentences that soon turned into pictures, pictures that started to blow away. As the smoke cleared, each picture was revealed to be a new dream entity. The last vestiges of smoke were gone now, leaving several new beings that now stood between Davis and the elemental.
Its rage was very clear; the being of fire was a mortal enemy of the new group of creatures. Nothing else could produce such hatred. It was etched in every line of fire that cut across the hulking monstrosities face. Hatred was too weak an emotion but it was all Davis had as a point of reference.

The eons of mutual animosity that these two types of creatures shared was impossible to quantify. The nature of their battle however was not.
The group of smaller creatures were squat and had human like bodies, however that’s where the similarity ended. The head was massive and extended from the shoulders straight up with no neck. They were also hairier than a caveman. If Davis thought about it he would probably have said they resembled small yetis. Each one carried a massive club. They triggered a memory for him of one of the beings said by the elders to exist in the dreaming.
The group of five advanced on the fire daemon. The battled was almost fully joined. The yeti like creatures broke into two groups each parrying the wild fiery sweeps. One copped a lance straight through the chest, it screamed as a jet of hot lava burst through the other side. Another took the opportunity and smashed its bat against the same arm.

The other arm was like a skewer. While one of the defenders went low and bashed the legs of the daemon, its arm drove through his two buddies, finishing them with hot jets of molten lava.
However the little creatures were hardier than Davis thought. The skewered creatures used their bulk to pull the daemon off balance keeping it from attacking. Davis wondered if he could have displayed such utter courage in his final moments.

He suspected it would not be an easy choice. The bats of the creatures were keeping the daemon at bay but were making little headway towards killing it. Suddenly one of them shrieked what sounded like a command at Davis’s uncle Cub.
“Eay she dah gur mer Qi” [Fire can be held at bay no longer, bring the waterman we must return to the dreaming]
So saying Cub brought his arms down from above his head and made a single booming clap in front of his body. Another creature entered the room through the far wall. It was similar in appearance to the fire daemon but made of running water. It took two steps each one over two metres and jumped onto the back of the fire daemon. It’s much thicker arms wrapped around the other beings thin neck. Pushing, merging into its body.
The two daemons became less distinguishable. Less giant humanoid figures, now two balls. One of fire, one of water. Now there was just one ball chasing itself. And then there was smoke, wisps of thick acrid smoke that smelt of ozone. The two remaining stocky creatures picked up their three stricken comrades and ran towards Cub and the far wall. The smoke got thicker around them, and then they were gone.
The room shifted. The walls took on straight edges, the corners of each surface were visible once more. The fire was real. The heat emanating for it, burnt. It burnt the hair and clothes. Instinct drove him now, forced backwards, he grabbed a clearly confused Firehead and pushed him out the still intact double doors to the conference room. The doors didn’t close. Even as they rounded the corridor connecting the room to the rest of the floor. Those doors exploded outwards unleashing the hidden hell that was growing within.
“Stairs, where are the fucken stairs matey?” asked Firehead.
“I ain’t got no fucken idea how we survived that living inferno. By rights we be dead men walking. I mean I already seen my life flash past on fast forward, so I know that shit was for real.”
He paused seeming to realise what he had just said. Davis instinctively understood that this was not a man that normally questioned his existence let alone discussed such matters with others.
“Let’s get the fuck out of here Mr Lockyer... Now!”
Davis led them toward the fire stairs. They were further than the lifts and he felt a need to take them, but reasoned it was a stupid idea. Whatever had happened in that room was going to spread, fast. He risked a glance behind. That half of the floor was burning. Fire had already ripped up the walls, anything more than twenty metres away was hidden behind thick arid black smoke. The smell of foul plastic carbon turning into gas choked the lungs. Nothing was clear beyond that gaseous wall. There position less than thirty seconds ago was literally a hell on earth.
“Don’t slow down sonny!”, Firehead yelled hoarsely, ripping Davis along by the arm.
“I ain’t gonna asphyxiate just after surviving that!”
They jogged brokenly towards the stairwell. Once inside the air was cleaner, and packed with panic stricken men and women that like sheep were falling, running, pushing and shouting their way towards the exit many floors below. From what he could see on the way through the floor had been empty. He hoped to hell everyone had made it out. Nothing was going to make it out any longer. At least they were on the top floor. No chance of people being trapped higher up above the fire. At least he hoped so.
He saw Ronnie. “Hey are you all right?”
“Yeah Davis, I think so, god what happened?”
“I don’t know, did everyone get out?”
“We were soo lucky Davis. Did you see what happened?, someone rang the fire alarm, but nobody knows who or why. But no sooner had it sounded than fire started ripping through the floor. Everybody just ran. Will from market operations kept his head and got everyone moving in the right direction. Oh god!”
She started to ball up. Crying was all she could do right now.
“Its ok Ronnie, its going to be ok.”
Not knowing what else to do he started giving her a comforting back rub.
“Your alive lady, and your... ok. Just hold onto that.”
He smiled at her a big warm smile. She looked at him softly clearly her moment of panic had been broken. “Thanks Davis your like the big brother I never had.” Davis stared at her in mock aghastment.
 “ZOMG Please don’t say that, I’m still going to hook up with you one of these days.”
She looked at him again, the out-and-out horror replaced with a cheeky grin, then kept moving down the stairwell.
As he moved he jumped the stairs two at a time, some sense of urgency seemed to push him onwards, and it wasn’t just fear of what was quickly burning its way down from above. He slowed as he caught up to Firehead who in his own unique way was rolling down the stairs like a sailor. His feet shimmied along the stairs. Legs bowed his concentration was clearly focused on getting speedily out of the burning building.  They didn’t talk the rest of the way down just worked as a team, through the thickening crowd of people emptying from each floor as they descended.
At about three quarters of the way down, they encountered fire fighters heading back up. The senseless sheep gradually became calmer and more orderly, people stopped shoving to get past, and thoughts of immediate painful death retreated from everybody’s collective consciousness. On the grass outside gathered with the rest of his team and the other company groups, he sat and thought about what had happened.
“We can’t hold it for long” Cubs words came back to him like an echo through a dream.
It had seemed like a dream, only more like an out of body experience. A waking dream. The place had been the conference room but the walls were not. The space inside was not. He had seen cub. Not imagined him. He had seen him. Unlike the rest of the room, cub had been crystal clear. Just like the last time he had seen him. The old warrior had looked him in the eye. What the fuck had happened? Two or three tonnes of white hot aircraft wreckage had been held at bay.
The jet fuel that was already evaporating into a gigantic fuel bomb inside the room had been prevented from burning them both to cinders. What could stop three and half thousand degrees of brazing heat? The laws of thermodynamics said not much, certainly nothing came to mind. Davis’s hunched body must have looked graven. His frame like stone as he pondered on the events just moments before. Firehead brushed against him as he sat down, his wide girth making and taking up the ground around him.
“Listen, Davis. Cops are gonna be here soon.”
“Yeah no doubt”, Davis said somewhat distracted, but on closer examination of Bill Kaddoul’s ashen face he added, “Look don’t worry about it. Get out of here I’ll handle it, say I was in that room by myself preparing for a meeting later on. I get that. And I’ll get straight onto the proposal for you.”
Bill laughed, “Mate you’d be forgiven for not thinking about work at a time like this. I like your professionalism. We’re going to do some business!” He gripped hands in a wrist lock, very firmly, staring hard into the young investment banker’s eyes.
This wasn’t your average hairy, beer drinking, hard riding, drug running biker scum, but Davis had already known that. He’d done his analysis of the gang’s structure. Most of the Intel hadn’t been found in the archives of Bloomberg or the net. Some, but the most interesting had been restricted police Intel. Intel TCB had had to pay handsomely for. It had been worth it. You didn’t get jump into bed with a new partner without some protection. Definitely not when several billion dollars were at stake. The police informants had been unanimous. Bill was close to the top. Close enough to make decisions, far enough that he wasn’t under constant surveillance, and powerful enough that he still had his hands on the till. Bill walked away towards the bike he had illegally parked up on the curb right outside the front of the building’s foyer.
Something else occurred to Davis now, a small warm rising feeling that rushed like lightening up and up from the small of his back. That feeling like warm water running along his nerves. Felt so many times around the campfire with Bear and Cub. Right before... Bang! No! This time it was different, something else was happening. His field of vision changed, altered subtly. The side peripherals became as sharp as in front. His natural focus seemed to track along a thin string several kilometres in length. He could see four blocks away as clearly as the back of his hand. Most startlingly though the people around him each had a small cloud above their heads. No that wasn’t right, it was more like a mushroom and it fell down to either side of the body, engulfing the entire body in a thin wispy transparent multi coloured shell.
Davis started to notice not everyone had the same colours washing over them. For starters almost everyone seemed to have a healthily looking blue green ocean wash above their corona. Several people did not. One employee that was being treated for smoke inhalation by the ambos, had black flecks running in random patterns all over his chest. The ambos were fitting a mask over his head; suddenly the flecks grew smaller and less frequent.
Davis gazed beyond the milling crowds back towards the entrance of TCB’s building. His sharp gaze instantly cut across the distance. The rolling pot bellied figure of Firehead was climbing aboard his hog. Hot red energy engulfed Firehead’s mushroom shell. It was super shiny though, seeming to contain more raw energy like a sun was blazing from inside.  Davis looked closer at Firehead. Beyond the shell, concentrating hard on the red shell above his head. The red became lines of red, lines that lead and were followed. Like a river, Davis had his eyes drawn by the pull of the current it exerted.
Images appeared; images flashed and were each replaced like a disjointed movie. The director randomly throwing his audience between scenes shot at the beginning and the end, moving the audience towards the middle. Davis tried to concentrate on what he was seeing, but the harder he focused the more the images seemed to slip.
“Let go of what you try to hold. Stand in the centre so the whole is revealed.” – Bear’s words.
Perhaps your right old bear. He tried to loosen up and stop focusing. He let the rush of images fall into his mind. But it was no use he felt weak, weaker by the second, whatever had given him this ability, and it was fading fast. The images were dynamic like little scenes, each one had Firehead somewhere in the frame. They all seemed to centre on the clubhouse and people that Bill was talking to. The other senses were blocked, there was sound but it was deliberately faint, the words of each party merging into a single background noise.
“Focus hard enough, and you will hear and see everything.” – Bear again.
Davis redoubled his efforts; he had to find out what this strange vision was trying to tell him. A scene sharper than the others emerged. Firehead was standing with a taller biker, who in most other respects looked just like Bill. He was the Black Skulls global chieftain. 
“Bill the game is changing. The money from the latest crops and batches is coming under renewed interest from the AFP and their getting help from the states. The amounts are too large to keep in cash, it’s being tracked according to our informants, even after it’s been cleaned. Who knows how long it is before they try and declare us as terrorist organisations. The fucken irony, we are their rebels, we are the last tangible fucken link that these broken monkey’s have with freedom.”
Mid rant tall guy spun and slammed his huge rocklike fist into the counter bench. The three beers sitting there jumped as if in alarm, the counter mat an old Manchester united scarf skidded towards the recessed beer taps.
“Black Skull’s need to move now on the full burn strategy, and I’m placing you in charge of that mate.”
Firehead appeared to grunt, looking intently into the his bosses eyes. Tall guy paused for emphasis, then continued,
“The time for action has come, you’ll take over the negotiations with the firms we have selected, and work with the Dame-Chaser and Low-Blow to arrange transfer of the gold once you are ready for it. I don’t even need to tell you what happens if you fuck up mate. You know, I know, that’s enough...”
He looked back at pictures on the wall behind the bar. Fallen comrades in arms, honoured forever in the clubhouse in which they had found sanctuary as was its tradition. Tall guy’s eyes blazed focused back on Firehead.
“One more thing boyo. Recent intelligence seems to indicate that our efforts to conceal the full extent of our cleaning and transfer operations were not entirely successful. Word is that the Rebels, along with that Chinese mob we used in that equity buy and sell are after some pie. They may have hired private contractors. Be very fucken careful mate. I don’t have to tell you how.”
Suddenly the crystal clear nature of the vision was gone. Davis felt rather than saw his regular vision return. The small ice like clarity of every object, reflecting details that could so easily be absorbed by the eye, was gone. It didn’t fade, just one moment he could see four blocks clearly, and the next he couldn’t see past the first.
What the fuck was happening? He suddenly felt an immense and prolonged wave of sadness. The world was a harsh and unforgiving place, and right now he felt like retreating to his inner city loft and curling up in a ball under the thick duvet. Maybe even calling someone not so special to come around and provide a false sense of belonging. To in truth let him fuck and forget this day, in the same way some men polished a bottle of Jack before hitting the hay.
Nothing made sense, but he knew sure as shit that punishing or pleasing himself wouldn’t help either. He needed to remember. He knew that, instinctively. What had happened had reminded him of a tale from his childhood.
“When you run through the woods by day, or by night, there are signs, ignore them at your peril” – Cub, or “Keep your eyes open young bear, the wind whispers your song” –Bear.
When Davis had been born his mother and father had already been divorced. He spent the first five years of his life living in a small house in Balmoral on Sydney’s north. Then his mum had snagged a rich American and headed off for the big apple. Many years later it had been his step dad who had provided the references to his first job at DeutschBank. He had missed out on that year’s graduate intake.
Despite being rated in the top one percent of students all through high school, he’d flunked his way through economics on a massive alcohol and drugs binge. His mother and father had never really been enemies; they had in his mothers words grown apart as his father became more intensely spiritual and emotionally distant. In his father’s words his mother was not prepared to let go of the false imprisonment of society. The familiar trappings were indeed something that Davis had had to let go of even before he really knew they existed.
At the age of six, his mother had left him with his father and uncle, to live in a remote indigenous community in central western NSW, some ten or twelve hours west as the crow flies from Sydney. At that time and even in this day and age of increased social interest, very few white fellas had tried to live alongside the aboriginal people who continued to live the traditional nomadic lifestyle. Davis had grown up with a boy from the tribe called Jay, his best friend. Until he was fourteen and his mother had returned to Australia, he had been schooled by his father and uncle in the ways of western society, completing  primary school by distance education.
He had been trained by the tribe, his mob, in the ways of the tracker. Jay was the son of the tribes chief elder, together they had learnt the songs, the dances, the ways and the words. Then the real teaching had begun, until on his thirteenth birthday he had been sent out alone into the wilderness for three weeks to live off of the land. The land had thrown up many challenges but from that day on he had never felt scared. Not until today.
One of the less important (to the young Davis) aspects of his spiritual training was the lessons in the dreaming. At the time they were stories. Stories he assumed like everyone else to be a living document. A way for the tribe to pass on stories that sat at the core of the tribes’ belief system. Perhaps more had been passed on. Bear had told him that the dreaming was real, that he and cub believed it was a manifestation of human potential in the waking world. They had spent every morning analysing his dreams, waking him up in the middle of the night, constantly reminding him to remember who he really was. By the age of ten he could control every dream he had.
Then as a teenager the partying had taken over and the dreams had reverted to the normal kind that everyone had. Sporadic, hard to remember with Davis as a passenger rather than a driver.
He understood at an inner level that Bear and Cub had taught him things, and embedded even more at a much deeper level. But the things that had happened today, they made no sense. Or maybe? The vision he had been shown, it seemed to indicate that there were parties after Firehead. After today it was obvious to Davis these groups were trying to put a stop to the deal Firehead was charged with completing. With more questions than answers Davis Lockyer closed his eyes. He thumbed his temples. This was zomg wtf.

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