Tale: Midnight

Arkay missed the sound of his heart monitor. During the long, dark nights, it was often the only thing he could hear that didn’t sound ominous or worrying. Since his heart monitor had been replaced with a silent, wireless one around his wrist, Arkay was sure he was either hearing things, or something was stalking him.

Of course, it’d been a few days and Arkay was finally starting to settle down. That night though, Arkay was just about to fall asleep when something creaked in the doorway.

“Who’s there?” Arkay squeaked. The door was slightly ajar. He’d requested the door be shut earlier when the junior medics left. Why was it open?

Arkay’s heart sped up. He wasn’t alone. He could hear a heartbeat.

“Please. Do not.”

Whatever it was, it was standing in the corner. Strong and proud. Arkay rubbed his eyes, then pulled his blanket up. It provided no extra protection but it made him feel ever so slightly more safe.

“Who are you?”

The creature growled slightly. “I thought you would remember me, Xentr-”

Before the being could finish its sentence, Arkay sat up in bed, his telekinisis leaping into action. The creature found itself floating in mid air, an invisible force crushing its throat.


Arkay squeezed tighter, realising who he was talking to.

“A-Arkay p-please p-put m-me d-down…”

Finally, Arkay relented and released his grip around the Temthan’s throat. But a second telekinetic blast kept the Temthan firmly in one place, arms and legs spread apart. The Temthan began to whimper, no longer struggling but clearly in pain.

“Please, Arkay, I want to speak to you.”

“Haven’t you caused me enough pain, Lenik?” Arkay sneered. “Have you not done enough?”

“I want to apologise.”

Arkay threw Lenik to the ground, then tried to get out of bed. But his IV drip stopped him from doing so. A voice in the depths of Arkay’s mind wanted him to tear out his drip then strangle Lenik with the cord, but Arkay held back.

“Apologise? APOLOGISE?”

Lenik found himself floating again. “Yes. Apologise. I am sorry for what happened to you. But now you are safe and sound. I want to extend an invitation for you to come back, under your own free will, to become a leader of the Temthans. Our minister of External Affa-AAH!”

Arkay wasn’t paying attention. He once again threw Lenik to the ground, then threw a metal kidney dish at him.

“Are you fucking kidding me?” Arkay almost laughed. “You want me to go back to your own shitty species that can’t even run a government properly? DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOU HAVE DONE TO ME?”

A flick of Arkay’s wrist, and the light flickered on. Lenik couldn’t help but gasp with horror.

“The second I started coming off the drugs you gave me, my body started falling apart. My insides are rotten.”

“We can f-”

“You can fix me? I fucking doubt it. I want nothing to do with you or any of your kind. I do not want to see another Temthan ever again!” Arkay turned off the light, then dropped Lenik on the ground. Something cracked and Lenik growled in pain. Arkay had broken his ankle.

Lenik tried to say something, anything, but the Rethan was having none of it.

“I do not trust you. I do not like you. You took advantage of me and lied to me. You’ve destroyed me both physically and mentally. It is unlikely I will see my twenty fifth birthday, let alone my thirtieth. And you know what? If a single Temthan tries to mess with me, or any other Rethan, ever again, you know what I will do?”

“What will you do?” Lenik stuttered.

“I will spend the rest of my short, crippled life, killing every Temthan I come across. And I will get away with it, not because I’m a hero to the Rethans, but because you are talking to a dying vok who will soon be dead.”

Arkay lifted Lenik up and threw him to the ground one last time, then let him go. Something else cracked, and the Temthan hissed in pain.

“Am I clear?”

Lenik awkwardly picked himself up, nursing his bruised body. “Yes.”

“Good. Now leave, and consider how lucky you are that I let you leave this room alive.”

The Temthan limped to the door and disappeared outside. Arkay smiled slightly, then laid back down in bed, pulling his bed sheets over him.

But before Arkay could fall asleep, something knocked on the door.

“Who is it?”

“It’s just Nurse Elenar. Are you okay? We all heard something going on and there’s an unconscious Thanatian in the hallway somehow!”

Arkay grinned. “I am absolutely fine. Just a bit tired. Could you close the door for me please?”

The nurse nodded and gently closed the door behind her, leaving Arkay alone in the dark, finally feeling happy for once.