Just Super.


11. Running.

At Seven the next morning Scott half jogged, half limped to Al’s parent’s house. He opened the front door to the sound of cooking bacon. Al’s parents Mr and Mrs Bishop were awake, Mrs Bishop was frying their breakfast. Buzzing around the house were Al’s fivesiblings.

“Oh hello Scott,” Mrs Bishop said smiling, “How are you?”

“As awesome as ever,” he replied, leaning against the doorframe, “Is Al here?”

“No, he never gets up before nine, even on work days. You know that.”

“Yeah, I’m just checking.”

“Well you can wait for him if you want” She said dishing up breakfast for her and Mr Bishop.

“Come in” her husband said, “Care to join us for breakfast?”

“I should get moving.”

“Nonsense, I want to know about all those cuts and bruises on your face.”

By the time the Bishops had fed him a three course breakfast, Scott had helped with the washing up and the Bishops had left for school and work Al was still sleeping

Maybe I made a mistake, Scott thought to himself, Maybe I was supposed to go to the park. As he was preparing to leave Scott had an afterthought, just a tiny niggly one.

He walked down the Bishops long hallway, past all the art his father had collected, opened the door slightly and peeked inside, Al lay on his bed. Tablet in hand and World of Warcraft Remodelled on high volume.

“Oh hey there Scott, I’ll be right with you.” Sounds of death bounced the four walls of Al’s bedroom.

Scott stared, he’d been here all along? “I’ve been waiting for hours Al,”

“I never saw you.”

“All you had to do was get up and walk literally ten steps.”

“Hey, you’re the one asking for my help.”

“You said seven.”

“My time is valuable to me.”

“You’re playing the same game you downloaded when you were ten.”

“Hey, maybe I want to be a Warlord, did you ever think of that?”

Al lay on his mattress for perhaps ten minutes before Scott shut the door softly and went outside. If I’m going to do this, he thought, I’m going to have to do it myself.

He took off past the Bishop’s mailbox and back toward his house, two minutes into his run and he started to feel pain running right down his lower back and a stich on his right side made breathing difficult.

But Scott didn’t give in, I’m gonna be a superhero he said to himself, I’m gonna be a superhero, he repeated, I’m gonna be a superhero.

Despite all the extra running and added fatigue from the day before he made three quarters of the hill before he collapsed, this time he skinned his knee. It didn’t hurt compared to the pain in his back but it looked nasty enough. Scott limped back down.

Scott stopped by at the playground, despite being dog tired he was determined to complete one pullup. The singlet dude who’d been pumping pullups was back, only this time he didn’t exercise, he just watched as Scott walked unsteadily toward the swing.

When you’re not very good at exercising having a spectator doesn’t help at all. Especially a spectator that looks like Spartacus. With slippery palms Scott clung to the top bar of the swings. He lifted his feet off the ground and kicked in vain upwards. His arms struggled and burnt and his chest ached but slowly he inched himself upward until he’d lifted himself high enough that he could stretch his neck upward and place his chin over the bar.

Completely satisfied with himself Scott let go of the bar and dropped right onto his butt. “Ouch,” he breathed as he lay in the bark.

From above him came laughing and then the singlet dude’s head and shoulders, “Were you putting that on dude? Or were you actually serious?”

Scott didn’t sit up, he didn’t move at all, “I’m dead serious.”

“Well dead serious,” the dude said offering a hand, “That was the most commitment I’ve seen in a long time.”

Scott stared at the hand, What does it mean?

“Come on, don’t leave me hanging,” the singlet-dude laughed.

Scott clasped hands, and with ease was transported to his feet. His legs still wobbled.

“I’m telling you dude,” Singlet said as they walked over to a park bench, “When I saw you running that hill yesterday I thought you were just another of those ‘New Years resolution’ weirdos.” They both sat down, beside Singlet-dude there were two one litre bottles of milk. “But dude, when I got a good close up of your face attempting the pullups I thought to myself dude!! This guy’s got it. Which is why I hung around so late.”

Scott, stared at the guy blankly, he tried to think of something nice to say back but his brain was switched off, all he wanted was to crawl back into bed. “Umm, thanks.” He said. Scott stared at his feet.

“So are you training for anything in particular man? Like a marathon or…”

Trying to think of an excuse that wasn’t superhero related Scott looked at singlet-dude’s singlet, it had little words printed into it MMA, fight club. “I uh want to join the MMA,” he said.  “I know I’m not in shape or anything but…”

Singlet-dude smiled like he’d won the lottery, “Yeah man, that’s insane. I’m, in the MMA!”

Scott nodded, trying to hide his weary smile.

Singlet didn’t notice, “Well up until last year, I was doing pretty good too. But some thug cheated and broke my leg before a match so I’ve had to spend this year recovering.” He nodded and flexed an arm, “When I get back there I’m going to be unstoppable. They all think I’m going to win it. Be just like Bruce Lee.”

As Singlet fell into a reverie Scott just stared around, he’d got his breath back and was keen to continue with the list. He had another week before he was supposed to go back to work and he’d planned to have a name by the end of the day.

“If that’s all, I’ll just be going…” Scott said, shifting his weight forward.

“No, no dude,” Singlet said, zoning back in. “I just get side tracked when I think about myself being something special, something out of the ordinary.”

Scott’s ears pricked up, he knew exactly how Singlet-dude felt.

A one litre carton of milk was thrust into Scott’s hands, “I always have these after trainings,” Singlet explained, it’s got everything, “Calcium, Protein, Fat.”  I guarantee if you drink one of them a day you’ll be superman in no time.”

Not knowing the effect his metaphor had Singlet plunged his head back, sculling the cartoon. More apprehensive Scott swirled the milk around a little, you’ll be superman in no time. He reminded himself.

For someone not used to drinking one litre of milk in a single go Scott stomached it pretty well, and only puked behind the seat once.

“There you go buddy,” Singlet said with a pat on the back, “Next time you’ll have a stronger stomach and that calcium will rebuild your bones.”

Eventually Scott stopped retching, stood up and thanked Singlet dude, “… yeah just thanks for everything and yeah the milk especially, you didn’t have to…”

Singlet nodded, “Hey man, if you’re actually serious about the MMA thing then maybe we can train together, just meet me here at six every morning. I’ll bring milk and show you a few fighting tips, you can fall on your butt again and make me laugh.”

Scott grinned,  “Sure I can’t wait for more of that milk.”


A/N: Hi all, I'm still writing!! This story has just slowed down as far as uploads go. Hope you're enjoying so far and please don't forget to leave a like!! The more votes this story gets the higher it is ranked, giving it a chance to get popular. 

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