1. Tuesday, July 16, 2002

    bryn and sonny first met each other 

    in the basement of the keeneyville grade school in the chicago suburb of mundelion, Illinois.

    even though the boys were always ending up in blood curdling school yard brawls, they were best of friends to the curious amazement of anyone who saw them fight.

    byrn was a short boy who was always coming to school beaten and bruised most thought at the hands of sonny, who seemed to feel no pain, but it wasn’t true. he got his ass kicked by everyone. an odd lad, he would fight with all sorts of people. but his favorite sparring partner was the ever smiling, eternally up-beat sonny i. lavista.

    “those two will either be the finest boxers to come from this town, or they’ll be dead before high school,” principal collins said to herself as she pulled back the stylish curtains of her office which over looked the west end of the playground.

    mundelion, famous for its youth boxing league did not discourage pugilism at any age, due in part to the fact that a healthy portion of the citizenry were either first generation immigrants raised on a brand of unspoken self reliance or they were simply the twisted offspring of one of the many famous organized crime families who had relocated from nearby chicago.

    bryn and sonny belonged to neither of these groups. they were merely two young boys who loved to fight and loved each others company.

    bryn, of course, had a secret.

    he was from another time.

    naturally.

    sent to earth specifically to adjust the tiny devices covertly placed into the heads of dozens of neighborhood kids in the forgotten town, bryn was the last child on his list, and was unfortunately the most difficult.

    the chip wouldnt snap in.

    so he tried to beat it into place.

    everywhere they went, sonny and bryn took turns slapping and wrestling and brawling and scratching and cursing and threatening and, eventually, bleeding and being broken up.

    only bryn knew the motivation behind the violence but sonny only wanted to stop the headaches, which were never-ending and excruciating.

    “i know you have terrible pains,” bryn told sonny that first time they met in the basement sorting pints of milk.

    “how do you know that?” sonny asked, stopping, still holding a chocolate milk that looked like a little house.

    “cuz i used to have them too,” bryn lied.

    and that’s when they first started to brawl. not out of hatred or fun but necessity. bryn did his best to beat the tiny chip into place so that sonny could see what he was chosen to see and so that bryn could complete his visit and go back to a time when things were simpler and everyone had flying cars and a man could buy a pair of concert tickets from a variety of sources at a nominal fee.

    but bryn failed day after day, month after month, and as time went on it became obvious to the time traveler that this young fellow might not ever get it together and might indeed need to be disposed. sonny was, however, certainly learning how to take a punch.

    one day as the boys were playing an innocent game of baseball in the street a happy little accident occurred.

    the hardball that sonny pitched was hit squarely by bryn and the ball sunk into sonny’s forehead and bounced away knocking the youth right on his back.

    he awoke to a world of colors and symbols, numbers and characters.

    “are you ok,” bryn asked.

    “no, not at all,” sonny winced.

    “how many fingers do you see?” bryn said holding up his middle finger.

    “twelve. thirteen maybe.” sonny said, blinking and eventually gave up and kept his eyes closed.

    bryn popped him a good one right on the nose. and then another. and then one more.

    “it’s like ive got a screw loose,” sonny said.

    “no, quite the contrary, friend. finally the screw is in place. open your eyes.”

    sonny did as he was told and the world was back in focus and he smiled. bryn smiled back and the sudden change of colors and spinning of numbers around his violent friend nearly blinded poor sonny with its unusual light.

    he promptly passed out.

    naturally.

    laughing at: oliver’s anna exclusive