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Kevin Kent, Earth Prince

Story ID:3111
Written by:John Ward (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Biography
Location:Denver to Guadalajara USA/Mexico
Year:2005
Person:Kevin Kent
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OurEcho Preface This post deals with a mature theme or contains explicit language. While the post is not extremely violent or pornographic, it does contain language or explore a subject matter that may offend some readers. If you do not wish to view posts that deal with mature themes, please exit this post.
I arrived just in time. They had started boarding the plane. I looked at my ticket and saw that I was in group “B.” There was a line moving slowly towards the exit as the ground Flight Attendant/Stewardess/Nom de Jour was checking the boarding passes and hoping the randomizer would find the next Muslim terrorist. I checked my ticket, found I was in Boarding Group B and walked up to a man standing in line. He appeared fairly intelligent, dressed in a suit, clean cut and carrying a briefcase.

“Pardon me; is this the line for Group B?” I asked.

“Why do you want to know? What is this?”

“Well, I’m late, I just want to be sure I am not jumping in ahead of anyone... there’s no problem…”

“Yeah? Well there better not be a problem buddy!” He was angry, aggressive, rude and seemed slightly demented. I had only asked if he was in Group B.

I said: “Sorry to trouble you” and asked another person who told me this was indeed group “B.” I walked to the back of the line and waited to board. I noticed that the rude man was called out of line for some reason and as he stood there, talking to one of the ground crew, the line went on and I was ushered into the plane.

I found my window seat and placed my baggage in the bin above the seat and, like the other passengers, I sat down and fastened my seat belt. There was one seat between me and the aisle and in about three minutes the rude man arrived, stopped, looked at me and said: “Ah NO!” I couldn’t understand this reaction. I had done nothing to offend this man, but he seemed to hate me right off the bat.

Grudgingly he sat in the seat next to me, huffing and puffing with irritation. I ignored him as best I could and pulled the air magazine out of the seat pocket in front of me. He made his irritation well known in every non-verbal way he was able. I did my best to ignore him.

Once we were airborne he decided he would make a phone call and used the phone that was imbedded in the headrest of the seat ahead of him. “Sarah? Kevin Kent. Listen has Jason left? He has? Well what did he say? Ah shit! Did you tell him what I told you? Before he left? Look, tell Frank I’ll take the goddamned thing. Yeah, I’ll do it! No, no I mean I want to do it; it’s just that it’s so friggin’ far! Hell I don’t give a rat’s ass! Tell him to go to hell... no look, just say I’ll do it for him. Yeah I’m willing to take care of it for him; I’m going to be there anyway… Look, let me speak to Frank. He’s not? Come on… come on! He’s not? Ah Goddamnit! Why does this always happen to me?! OK look, forget the whole thing I’ll call him when he’s available, I just don’t buy that he’s not available now. Look honey, I know he’s there, you know he’s there... Tell him I’m willing to take care of it! Fine, I’ll do it!” And with that he hung up.

This was a most telling conversation. This horribly rude poster boy for anabolic steroid abuse had revealed so much about himself in that short, explosive conversation. The flaring of unwarranted anger, the Herculean attempts to seem calm, so as to get the cooperation of the secretary he obviously despised, showed an insecure man digging his own corporate grave. Someone had obviously been given a job he had failed to perform and his opportunity to put the problem right had been whisked out from under him.

Psychology reveals that from new born infants through weaning, we are led to believe that everyone in our environment is there to serve our needs: feeding, sleeping, comfort, reassurance, cleaning, etc. In fact our mothers are there at every cry and seem to interpret our needs miraculously catering to them as soon as they possibly can, reinforcing this belief. When we grow into children this illusion is reinforced by the fact that we get that sort of attention from both parents and all our relatives when we complain, or cry, or if we express need verbally. We, quite naturally, see the world relative to ourselves in a very narrow, self-centered way and we see ourselves as the center of the universe. Things revolve around us and seem to be there to make sure we grow and prosper safely. However, as we grow and mature we are disillusioned and realize that we are not the center of the universe and that we are just one in billions of people trying to make a life on this isolated planet. This can be a traumatizing revelation and some people never quite get over feeling that they are, somehow, the one person for which everyone and everything in the world was created. Kevin Kent was obviously one of these cases of arrested development.

As the flight continued I fell asleep for a short while and awoke to him roughly elbowing my arm off the arm rest. “Get your arm off the rest you fat fuck!”

I said: "What is your problem? I’m only on the back part, use the front part, how old are you anyway - eight?”

“None of your business… how old are you, huh? How old are you? Goddamned son of a bitch!”

It was then that I realized what the man’s problem was. Just the act of asking him made the answer clear to me. At this point I was tiring of the abuse and invective so I decided to take advantage of his idiocy. I said in a low voice: “Calm down Kevin.”

He froze mid insult and looked at me strangely, confirming my suspicions. He could not imagine how I knew his name. He obviously didn’t remember giving it over the phone. I continued: “The council is angry.”

“What the hell are you talking about?”

“Quiet!” I whispered, “I am not supposed to be telling you this!

“Telling me what?” he demanded.
“If you don’t quiet down I will not tell you anything and pretend this never happened! I am taking a risk talking to a test subject.” There was about five seconds of silence and then amazingly he whispered back and I knew my assessment had been right.

“What the hell are you talking about? What council, what test?”

“Listen, I have gone to bat for you too many times, this is your last chance. You’re screwing up and they won’t listen to me anymore.”

“Who won’t listen any more?” he whispered.

“Kevin, you’re not supposed to know, but you’re taking the test and I asked for this assignment so I could help you. Don’t screw it up.” All this said with a conspiratorial tone, barely moving lips, while looking, for all intents and purposes, like I was fascinated by the flight magazine.

“Listen buddy” he whispered with less conviction, “tell me what goddamned test!”

“THE test. OK look, I’m not supposed to be telling you this, but this planet, this plane, these people you see all around you, even me, we are a part of the test. All your relatives, your friends and associates, people you don’t even know and will never meet; we are here just so you are convinced this planet is reality and that you aren’t from Zircon Three.”

“Zircon... What the hell?”

“Haven’t you ever seen someone you thought you’d seen somewhere before, but in a completely different context?” I asked. “That’s a repeater. That’s someone whose role was so small that the council thought they could be used again. If you go to that person and confront them they’ll deny ever seeing you to their last breath, but you’re right, you have seen them.”

“That’s happened! I have seen that.”

“You are one of Baal’s sons, you and your two brothers are being tested to see who will take over when your father retires. I am your Warder. I represent your interests to the council and they are the ones who decide on your testing. You are not doing well and I am here risking all to cheat and help you.” I was barely moving my mouth and Kevin was completely enthralled.

“I don’t have brothers!”

“Not your Earth family. Not them, I am talking about your real family.”

Kevin thought for a moment. “What am I doing wrong?” he asked barely moving his mouth and furtively looking at other passengers in the plane.

“Don’t be so obvious, for both our sakes, please! Pick up a magazine! Read it casually. Look Kevin, you are being tested for leadership qualities. Do you know what those are?”

“Yeah, giving orders and getting things done.”

“No! No, that’s why you’re not doing well. Listen you’re going to be the one on top if I have anything to do with it, because I want that council seat, so listen to me well. Leadership is many, many things, not just giving orders and getting things done. A large part of leadership is foresight, the ability to foresee what consequences your words or actions will have. You must believe in and enforce the law, but you must, at all times show compassion for those you will rule. You must not apply any philosophy or law with a broad brush and always be conscious of individual exceptions. You must show, with sincerity, the advantage of an action or deed to those who will be subjected to it. You must...”

“There is no meal on this flight, would you care for honey nuts or an oatmeal cookie?" Kevin looked terrified. The flight attendant leaned over as she propped the drinks cart with her thigh.

“Just the nuts for me thanks… sir, would you care for anything?” I asked Kevin innocently.

“No... no... nothing.”

“He says he’s not hungry, but thanks anyway.” I said loudly leaning over him as if trying to let the other “passengers” know that he was being polite.

“Here you are sir. Drink?”

“Just a Coca-Cola please.”

“No… nothing… but thank you very much.” said Kevin more boldly now.

“Here’s your coke sir.” And with that she went further forward.

“Well done Kevin” I whispered, “I’m sure that will be noted.”

“Jesus Christ! Are they all watching me?” he looked panicked and the corner of his magazine in my peripheral vision was trembling.

“Kevin, they are observers. They only report major things… Use this to your advantage. Now you know. Your brothers don’t know and they are at a disadvantage. Make sure you show leadership qualities in the things you do and that will get back to the council. But whatever you do, do not reveal that I told you about it. That will end it for me and you will never rise higher than Centimellian.”

“Jesus, what’s that?”

“You don’t want to know, but it has something to do with post alimentary processed food recycling. Just be cool, get off the steroid...” he looked at me in shock. I was someone he had never met before, but I seemed to know so much! I struggled to keep from laughing, because anyone could tell he was on steroids. “You will be judged on character, not physical prowess, you passed that test already on another planet.” I felt that he would be less likely to feel the need to prove himself if he could believe he had already done so.

“OK tell me… tell me what to do, tell me more...”

“Listen, I can’t talk anymore, I sense some of the others are getting suspicious. Just know, you are being observed and you have to show tolerance, compassion, wisdom, strength of character, consideration and the imagination of a leader. We must stop talking now or we’ll be caught. Don’t screw up any more; the council is close to failing you. And, whatever you do, don’t reveal that you know what this is all about.”

“I won’t, I won’t… can you help me in the future?”

“They won’t let me come around again, this is a chance meeting and they don’t let Warders have recurring roles in a subject’s life. Just don’t forget, you are in a test of character. Win this, please.”

“I’ll do it, just tell me anything I can do and I’ll do it... Can you tell me anything else?”

I held my tongue and acted like we were just chance seat-mates on a long flight to Mexico.

“Anything else?” he persisted quietly, risking a glance at me. I held my tongue, but this time I looked at him like he was insane.

“I get it, I get it…” he said nodding and for a minute I was afraid he did get it, but what he was doing was reassuring his “Warder” that he understood my silence.

The flight ended in Guadalajara and Kevin got off being extraordinarily polite to all and sundry, which, if my story had been true, would have quickly given away the fact that I had cheated and told him of his circumstances. It was obvious this man’s elevator did not go all the way to the penthouse. However, since I had made the whole thing up, I felt the world around him could only be a better place for his change in attitude. His conceit at believing he was some sort of “Prince” and his ambition to become the next “King” of Zircon Three would serve him well and all those who had to deal with him.