Damhamer – Chapter Two
Six days had passed and no signs that the strange visitor was going to wake up. Some of the city council members stop by to see if there was any progress with the Vipa. That is what they called him; it meant “unknown.” The doctor explained that the wounds he sustained, even the major ones, have completely healed, and he could not explain why. The council was concerned about what to do with him if he doesn’t wake. There was no long-term care facility here, but they would give it a little more time.
I took an interest in the stranger. I would spend more time with him than any other patient. I would talk to him like he was awake. One afternoon he moved a little and there was a faint murmur. It lasted about five seconds, then back to being a vegetable. The doctor wasn’t sure if it was a sign of recovery or just his brain coping with something. Only time will tell, as they say.
It had been two weeks and no response. The council was about to make a decision on what to do with the Vipa. There was a facility on Para Collet 13. There was a fully staffed medical facility there that possibly know who he is and what he is. Their doctors may have treated someone like him and could better care for him.
A loud crash was heard coming from the patient’s room at the end of the hall. It seems that the stranger had woken and was destroying the room. Leeber Monjim and Jesek Ashurst ran to the room. They are the police, so to speak. Actually they are assigned to the city by the military. They are nice guys; they will help anyone in need. They are liked by everyone. When they arrived, the Vipa was sitting on the floor. He had smashed the bed and most of the equipment in the room. The police tried to calm him but that only made him angrier. He seemed to have trouble standing. That was good—at least he could not go into the city—but they did not know how long he would be immobile. The police had stun guns, not real weapons though, and from the way it looks the stun guns would only make it worse.
Monjim stepped into the room and tried to calm him. That didn’t work. he was struck with the bed pan, of all things. He was not hurt seriously. At that point the Vipa started to stand. Everyone knew there would be no stopping him if he wanted to leave.
I had been watching all the action and decided to walk in and see what I could do. The police shouted at me to stop. They thought I would be killed. The stranger saw me and started walking to me. I spoke in a calm but a little shaky voice. “Are you all right?”
He stumbled a few more steps toward me. Everyone was shouting to get out of there but I would not listen. I spoke again. “We have been taking care of you since the crash. We did not know if you would wake up.”
He stopped and looked at me with a puzzled look. There was silence, then the stranger spoke. “Where am I?” His voice was low and shaky but still scary.
“You are at Madesto Medical Facility. You’ve been in a coma for three weeks.”
“How did I get here?”
“Your ship came through the atmosphere on fire and crashed on the side of Mount Eature. Your ship was destroyed and only you survived. Do you remember what happened? What is your name? You have markings on your clothing. It looks like letters.”
His voice got a little louder. “What have you done to me?”
“Actually, nothing. We did not know what species you are. Doctor Lecxtod did not know what to do. We could not get any accurate readings. The instruments malfunctioned. And besides, all your wounds healed in a matter of days. Some even hours.”
The stranger stumbled to the floor. I ran to help him. “Please, get back into bed. You need to rest. You still haven’t told me your name.”
“I don’t know. I don’t remember who I am.”
“That’s okay. Your head should clear up with a little more rest.”
“I remember your voice. Or was that a dream?”
“I did come in and check on you. I would talk to you.”
“Your voice was very pleasant to me. Thank you. I don’t remember my name.”
“That’s okay. We have been calling you Vipa, which means unknown. But for now, just rest.”
The others came in. The Vipa tried to get up again.
“It’s all right. They are not going to hurt you. This is Dr. Lecxtod. He has been trying to treat you.”
The council and the police asked a lot of questions, but the Vipa did not remember anything. Nurse Vetta told everyone the patient needed to rest, so they would have to pick this up later. Doctor Lecxtod confirmed, “Nurse Vetta is right,” and like children being scolded for something they all reluctantly left. The Vipa was quiet. He was searching his mind for some scrap of memory, but not having any luck. By the way he slammed his fist down on the bed, startling me and the others, he doesn’t seem to be finding anything. I know it has to be frustrating not to be able to remember anything from his past, but I believe it will come back to him.
I took his hand, which engulfed mine. “I’m sure your memory will return. I know it is not easy. I can only imagine what you are feeling, but I know it will be all right.”
“Your hand is soft and your voice could calm a Tranzineum Cot Beast.”
“What is that?”
“I don’t know. It just came to me.”
“You see, there is something you kinda remember. And I will take that as a compliment. It was my pleasure to hold your hand and talk to you.” I thought to myself, Stop being so flirty. You are acting like a schoolgirl. You don’t know who or what he is. For all you know about him he could be attached to someone. But I can’t help myself. He is so—what would could I use—I know, so dreamy. Yes, that wouldn’t be it.
One of the orderlies brought a tray in. “Here’s the food you asked me to get.”
“Vipa, this is Tysumaa, one of the orderlies who works with us from time to time. Thank you, Tysumaa. Set it on the table.”
“Yes, ma’am, Nurse Vetta. Will there be anything else?”
“No, thank you. That will be all. Vipa, I know you have to be starving, but I wasn’t sure what to give you. These are fresh fruits and vegetables from the markets here. They are brought in from the Soilarus 2 Planet. It is what we call an agricultural planet, about two light years from here. There are also some merchants who grow some vegetables here, but it has to be in a hydroponic grow room. The soil for that has to be brought here. There is no soil on Orex, so it is very costly to do. Most of what is grown is done by the residents who live here.”
“Where do you come from?”
“I am Arquilam. Planet Arquiala is in the Dredium Galaxy about six light years from Orex.”
“Do you have Conal there?”
“What does Conal mean?”
“Do you have others of your line?”
“Others of my line? Oh, you mean family. Yes, I do. My parents and two sisters are on Arquiala.”
“How did your Ca bring you here?”
Vipa held out his hand, placed the index finger of the other hand in the palm, and moved it in a line.
“Does that mean path, or why am I here on Orex?”
“Well, I was recruited by the Xedef Priority and attended medical school on Earth. When I graduated I was assigned to Orex Orion. I’ve been here five years. I was not happy at first. I thought of this place, ‘If space had an ass, this place would be its crack.’ But now after living here, I love this place. I’ve got to know a lot of different species, and they are all great. Doctor Lecxtod is a wonderful doctor. I enjoy working with him and the volunteers at Medesto. The inhabitants on Orex are a kind and caring group. When something happens, we all work together to solve the problem.”
“What problems do you have here?”
“Nothing for you to be concerned with. I’m sorry, I have been going on and on. You should get some rest. I will be back to check on you later.”
“I am deeply humbled that I have nothing to share with you.”
“That’s okay. I’m positive your memory will return soon.”
Vipa’s strength had not returned so he went right to sleep. I am hopeful some of his memory will return tomorrow.
It was four time, which is late night on Orex. The time is in periods one through four. Each period is three hours. Each number is the position where we are in reference to the sun or suns. On Earth it would be 3:00 AM. I received a transmission from Medesto, from Eeza, the fourth time nurse. There was a problem. Vipa had woken and destroyed the room again. I got dressed and rushed to Medesto. Dr. Lecxtod was already on his way. I arrived before the doctor. I could hear the commotion as soon as I walked in. “Hi, Eeza.”
“Hi, Nurse Vetta.”
“Well, he seemed to be resting comfortably. Then all of a sudden he woke in a rage, and I was unable to calm him enough to give him a sedative. Every time I walk in the room he gets angry. I am sorry I called you so late. I didn’t know what else to do.”
“That is quite all right, Eeza. You did the right thing.”
Doctor Lecxtod arrived. “Good morning, ladies. Has the patient calmed down?”
“No, sir. I just arrived myself. I am going in.”
“Please be careful, Nurse Vetta. I know you have some connection with Vipa, but we do not know who he is or what he is capable of doing. Eeza, did you call Jesek?”
“I believe I saw them patrolling down the street from here. Give them a call.”
“Nurse Vetta, wait ’til Leeber and Jesek get here before you go in. It’s better to be safe.”
It only took a few minutes for them to arrive. “What is the problem, Sigman?”
“Our guest is having a bit of a problem again. I wanted you to be here before anyone went in there. Okay, Nurse Vetta. Any sign of trouble, get out of there. We will be right here waiting.”
“Yes, Doctor.” I walked into the room. A strange feeling came over me. I was not sure what it was but I knew I did not like it. “Vipa, are you okay?”
Vipa stood up. I was startled. He looked larger somehow. I know that sounds odd, but he did. There was a dark look on his face. There was a necklace around his neck when he crashed. We tried to take it off but it was fused to his large, muscular chest. It had an oval-shaped stone of sorts, maybe a Tulethan onex. It was black, cased in what looked to be unpolished silver. It was glowing white around the edges.
“Why are you out of bed? And of course, why are you destroying the room? Are you in pain or having some problem?” As soon as I spoke again, his whole demeanor changed. He looked the same as before.
“I…I had these tormara visions. So much death and destruction.”
“Here, let’s get you back into bed.” I turned and motioned to the others that everything was fine; it was safe to come in now. I noticed that the stone in his necklace was not glowing white now. All of it was sort of a grey color. Very odd.
“What did you mean by tormara visions?” I asked.
“I saw these things inside my head.”
“Oh, you mean you had a bad dream.”
“Yes, it sounds like you were having a bad dream. You saw these things in your sleep.”
“Yes. That is it.”
“Does ‘tormara’ mean bad?”
“It means unspeakable terror. There was so much blood.”
“Do you think it is something from your past? Maybe you are a soldier in the military. That would explain your clothing and the markings on your armor.”
“I don’t know.”
The doctor and the others came in. “Are you okay now, Vipa?”
“Uuuuuhhhhh…” Vipa grabbed his head.
“Are you feeling pain or pressure in your head?”
“Nurse Vetta, please get me ten cc’s of medaline roxee.”
“Vipa, I am not sure if this will help you. This is what I give my patients that suffer from nesstess, which is a form of migraine headache.”
“Here is the roxee, Doctor.”
“Thank you, Sii. I am not sure what or if you are allergic to anything, just so you know that. Do you understand?”
Doctor Lecxtod gave the injection. In a matter of minutes, Vipa’s headache was gone.
“Thank you, Doctor.”
“No problem. But next time, please just ask the nurse for help and try not to destroy the room.”
“I am sorry. There was so much chaos in my head. I felt fear and thin rage. I could not control myself.”
“That’s all right. Just rest now.”
“Doctor,” I said, “he had what he calls tormara visions. I believe he was dreaming about something in his past, but he is not sure if it was something he witnessed or was involved in.”
The roxee has a sedative side effect. Vipa went right to sleep, hopefully with better results.
“Okay, everyone out. Let the patient rest.”
“Do you think it’s safe now?”
“I’m not sure, Jesek. Stay close to your communicator just in case.”
“Yes, no problem. Goodnight, Sigman. Goodnight, nurses.”
“Goodnight, Jesek, Leeber. Nurse Vetta, would you mind staying here? I am concerned that the—what did you call it again? —the tormara visions.”
“Yes, tormara visions.”
“What does it mean?”
“He said that it meant unspeakable terror.”
“We don’t know who he is or what his intentions were when he came here. I hope it doesn’t mean something bad is coming.”
“I hope so too, Doctor.”
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