“Insensitive” By Arjun Shah

Chapter 1

Lenny Hill was on the bank of a river. How did he end up here? As he was walking he saw a man, and Lenny decided to go there and ask him where he was. As soon as the man saw Lenny, he ran away scared to death, as if there was a monster behind him. There wasn’t, of course, but why did he run away like that? Away in the distance Lenny saw a building, it looked like a grocery store. If he wanted answers, then he had would have to go there. His past was complete, he remembered everything- his parents, his life, his friends. But not what happened a couple of hours ago. The last thing he remembered was an airplane crash. His parents were with him and his best friend Andrew. They were going on the airplane because Lenny’s father owned a huge export company- Travelocity. They were on a vacation to Hong Kong, but of course Lenny’s father- Charlie Hill will never get a vacation. Lenny invited Andrew because he knew that even though his parents called it a vacation, it would just be a business matter. During the flight something pounced on the plane and caused the engine to fail and crash, but that’s not how his parents died. The thing that pounced on them was E.T. It had weird arms, wobbly and jellylike. Its legs…..actually it didn’t have legs. There was a kind of belt mechanism around it making it levitate. Andrew was paranoid and mildly insane, but that’s why Lenny liked him anyway. Just as Lenny had expected, he started screaming and flailing and crying which he only does in the worst case scenarios. The creature or Jellyman, as he now decided to call it, attacked Charlie Hill and threw him out the window. This broke Lenny. He went into a kind of zone where you know what’s happening, but you don’t know what to do. Tears streamed out of his eyes. Angela Hill, Lenny’s mother, was panicking and screaming, but she too was attacked by the monster. Lenny just stood there paralyzed. Andrew had fainted and his mother had been eaten alive by Jellyman, and last, but not least, his dad had been thrown out of a window. Snapping back to reality, Lenny tackled the creature out of the plane and they crashed down.

 

Chapter 2

 

Lenny snapped back to reality again and continued walking. He walked by many people and they all ran away screaming or asking for help. Lenny looked down to see that his stomach had been cut open and blood was everywhere. Lenny tried to walk but suddenly has fell down and passed out.

“Sir how did he survive?” asked Susan, Danny Boyle’s assistant. “I don’t know Susan. He must be special, and I’m going to find out why,” replied Danny Boyle. Lenny woke up with a shooting pain in the stomach. Oh right, he was bleeding to death. He looked to down to see that his stomach had been bandaged. He was in a hospital.  Lenny’s mind was swirling and ravaging with thoughts. What had happened? The door then opened and he saw someone come in. His vision was very blurry since he had just woken up, but he immediately realized who it was, Andrew. Lenny was overjoyed, but how is he still alive? “Andrew! Holy crap! How did you get here?”

“Um, Len I think you should ask yourself how you got here.” Replied Andrew. Andrew continued, “After the plane crashed I woke up under a tree, with my arm paining a lot. I dunno what happened to your parents, but…..”

“Andrew, stop. I know what happened to them and they’re dead. My dad got thrown out of the airplane which means he’s probably dead and I know for sure that my mother is dead because she was eaten alive in front of my eyes. And you know what I did? I just sat there watching, while my mother got eaten alive.”

Andrew was sensing that this was not the time for talking, so he decided to end the conversation. “Lenny, listen. I’m sorry, but I think you should rest a bit more. How about we talk tomorrow?” Lenny wanted to reply, but those words sounded good to him so he just closed his eyes and instantly went to sleep.

Chapter 3

 

Lenny woke up at about 8 o’ clock in the morning. He felt queasy and uneasy. He was going to go back to sleep when the door opened and Andrew and some other person entered the room. “Hey Len how’s it going? Anyway let’s pick up from what happened yesterday. After I woke up, I realized that my arm was broken and it did hurt a lot, but I got up and started walking. I saw the plane had crashed and started walking toward it. What I saw was really unbelievable, a weird alien thing was walking around the plane and it was hovering. Then out of nowhere it said, ‘This is unit co2 and I have finished the business requesting backup now’  By then I was freaked out, so I ran the other way and saw a grocery store in the distance, but as I kept walking towards it, I heard shouts and screams. There was a crowd gathering in an area and as I went to see who was there, I saw you Len so I told everybody to back off. I picked you up and somehow my phone had survived the crash and I called the ambulance. After that we arrived at Boyle hospital and this man next to me is Danny Boyle.”

Lenny was taking all this in when Danny started talking. “Lenny when Andrew arrived with you to the hospital your stomach was cut open completely and you were bleeding quite a bit. Now an average human would die with the pain and the blood loss. Do you have any idea how this could have happened?”

Lenny tried to reply, “Well I have always been strong and…..”

“Danny, no. If you thought you survived that because you were strong then you’re an idiot. Look, you have disease, a disease called Congenital Insensitivity. It’s a disease where you can feel no pain.”

 

Chapter 4

 

Those words hit Lenny like a slap. He had a disease? Lenny never showed any symptoms or even had any problems in his life. Danny said, “Look Lenny I know this is a shock to you, but you have to understand that this is not a problem. Look, when you scrape your knee it hurts, right? Well, have you ever felt any pain when that happens to you?”

Lenny replied, “No, actually. But I always just thought that it didn’t hurt that much, so I didn’t bother.”

“Okay, then have you ever broken a bone?” said Danny.

“No, well, I don’t know anymore. Once in a while after a hard hit there’s a click, but there’s no pain.”

“Lenny we took any x- ray of you, and we found 6 broken bones, which means that you have been through pain, but you’ve never felt it.”

Andrew was in shock too, to find out that his best friend had a disease which he could feel no pain. Danny was feeling sorry for Lenny but he had a plan. “Lenny, look, no offense, but you are really emotional and cranky. I lost my parents when a terrorist attacked them, and I lost my leg, too.”

Danny was wearing trousers so it wasn’t visible. He lifted his sleeve to reveal a robotic leg. Danny Boyle was an orphan, he never knew his parents and that robotic leg that he had was just a really well done piece of plastic. This was only to lure Lenny into his plan. “So, Lenny now that you have no one to take care of you, my assistant Sheila will. Sheila, come in please.” Sheila was a middle-aged woman who had glasses and was very thin. Danny continued, “In exchange for me taking care of you, you will join my task force. Just sign the contract and we will take care of you as long as you need us to.”

Andrew knew this was just a trick, but Lenny didn’t know that all of his father’s business Travelocity was going to be his and all the money too. Danny was going to get the bank and security details from Charlie Hill’s “faithful” assistant Victoria. Andrew was going to get 25% of the money in the bank accounts, if he kept his mouth shut. Everyone knew that Danny Boyle had been involved in many illegal things recently, as it was all over the news. Which meant that if Lenny accepted the job he would be involved in some pretty funky stuff. “Lenny, do you accept?” said Danny.

“Yes, I do.”

 

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