No explanation. No summary.
Just little moments that forms part of a bigger picture in time to come.
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Jeff ( Hibiki )
It’s a view like no other.
One that only a select few would be able to enjoy unless you take part in a vertical marathon in one of the tallest building in the country.
The wind at that height is roaring by my left ear as I stood on the roof of Swissotel Stamford.
There is this unspoken calm before the storm.
Storm clouds gathered and I could see lightning in the horizon out at sea.
I could smell the rain even before it started.
On my right ear, the chatter over the radio waves started to pick up in intensity.
It’s going to happen soon.
My hand reached for the sidearm on the side of my thigh before instinctively reaching behind my back to feel the reassuring touch of my knives.
I could feel the weight of the 4 extra clips and the body armour I was wearing.
My fingers opened and close as I waited for the inevitable.
The horizon turned an eerie shade of pink and orange when lighting flashed in succession.
I head the door behind me open and I spun around immediately, my hands reaching for both the knife and the pistol I was carrying. When I saw the men walking through the door, I relaxed a little.
Xia walked in for the first time without his massive Kwandao. Not many people know this but Xia is exceptionally good with his bare hands as well. He’s old school warrior, like someone who still lives in the past.
He practices the art of drinking tea. On mornings, he does Qigong by the reservoir. He keeps bamboo scrolls of old text at home, and he can recite all the old Tang poems.
If I didn’t know better, I would think he was a time traveller.
Real old school warrior.
The kind that heats up a wok of salt so he could punch his fist into the potent mixture to thicken his skin.
He wraps rice sacks and old car tyres around a concrete column as his punching bag.
He can take a massive amount of pain and still fight.
Xia’s has just collected his new mask from the mask maker.
After a 2 year wait, he finally got his customised order done.
Painted in black and a dark shade of pink and red, the mask looked just like what the chinese opera singers do to their faces during performance. The thick eyebrow, the exaggerated expression, an expression of menace.
Behind him follow a young chap.
Barely older than a kid.
I call him a kid because he is young.
At 23, Nikka started down this path early.
Ron picked him and his brother up in boys home, cleaned them up, gave them purpose.
Nikka is the more impulsive of the 2.
He’s idealistic and can get overly eager at times.
He thinks he’s invincible. I thought the same too at that age.
The training I went through, the things I’ve done. No one can touch me.
That was the kind of thinking that was instilled into my head.
Nikka has potential, there’s still a lot for him to learn.
A good kid.
I looked back towards the horizon, towards the sea.
The lightning continued flashing and streaking across the skies. The short flash illuminated the ships and tankers anchored along the straits of the island.
I looked to my left and I could hear the roar of jet engines approaching.
A squadron of planes broke the sound barrier, slicing through the skies towards the same horizon I was looking at.
I thought about my daughter. Her smile. Her laughter.
The way she runs over to me. The way she holds her toys.
I smiled wider as I thought about how she can handle and balance a police baton. Seeing her laughing as she twist and knocked down the soft toys while maintain full control of the weapon gives a father that little reassurance that she will be able to take care of herself when she grows up.
I thought about my wife.
The gentleness of her touch a stark contrast from the pain of her punch and kicks.
Never in my wildest dreams would I dream of such a day arriving.
That something like this would happen to my country.
They have been saying it for a long time.
Not if, but when.
No one expected the ‘when’ to arrive so swift and fast.
I felt my heart skip a beat when I heart a distant boom.
A low rumble.
Then it happened again.
The channel I was logged on in exploded into a frenzy. Orders were given and from the chatter, I closed my eyes as I tried to form a picture of what is happening in my mind.
I felt my secure phone vibrate and I answered it.
If not for the noise cancelling headset I was wearing on my right, I would not be able to hear Ron through the howling wind.
Ron : Our lines are spread thin…. Some of them broke through…..an estimate 40 to 50 men landed…. We have confirmed sightings at Marina south and Tanjong pagar
Jeff : Ok…
Ron : Good luck Jeff…..
I was about to keep my phone when it rang again.
I smiled at the number display and I answered it.
Lynette : Daddy.. ?
Jeff : Yes baby… ?
Lynette : I miss you….
Jeff : I miss you too….why aren’t you sleeping… ?
Lynette : I want to wait up for you….
Jeff : hahah… I’m going to be working late today dear…..
Lynette : Are you working alone ? ….
The innocent voice of my daughter calmed my nerves like a healing slave as I watched the explosions light up the skies towards the direction of Marina south.
Tracer rounds cut across the skies like someone drew a dotted line with neon paint at night.
There was a 3 second pause before I saw the whole district light up like someone set off a humongous fire cracker.
Lynette : Daddy…. ? You there….
Jeff : Yes dear… I’m here….
Lynette : You working late on your own tonight…. ?
I smiled and shook my head, as if my daughter could see me.
With a heavy heart, I answered my daughter.
Jeff : Baby….. many daddies …. and mummies all over the country…. Will be working late tonight with me….
Lynette : Will you wake me up when you come back Daddy… ?
Jeff : of course….. of course….
Lynette : Ok……. I love you…
Jeff : I love you too….
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Moments is a collection of scenes that I am building upon for a full length work due to be released sometime in the future.
The story will be told from different perspectives happening along the same timeline.