The Noricin Chronicles: The Lost Boy by Mark Sheldon - Read Online
The Noricin Chronicles
0% of The Noricin Chronicles completed

About

Summary

Dan Regal has always been alone, having been left on the steps of an orphanage when he was only a baby. He has never had any visitors, nor made any true friendships with the other children at the orphanage. Aside from this utter, inescapable aloneness, Dan Regal is an entirely normal, unremarkable young boy.

But all of that is about to change...

Published: Mark Sheldon on
ISBN: 9781458110619
List price: $0.99
Availability for The Noricin Chronicles: The Lost Boy
With a 30 day free trial you can read online for free
  1. This book can be read on up to 6 mobile devices.

Reviews

Book Preview

The Noricin Chronicles - Mark Sheldon

You've reached the end of this preview. Sign up to read more!
Page 1 of 1

1

Obviously, Logically And Clearly

Daniel Lendell Regal was an altogether uninteresting child. He had no special skills or talents. He had no quirky characteristic traits that made him different from other children. He was in every sense just a typical, pre-teenage boy with dark blond hair and blue eyes. There were only two things that made him stand out from average children, neither of which was anything that most children would be inclined to boast about. The first was a pale birthmark on his right palm, shaped like a crescent moon. The second was that he had no family.

Dan had spent his entire life in a Boston orphanage, and as far as he or anyone else could tell, he was completely and utterly alone in the world. The only visitors he’d ever had were the annual CASAC (Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children) volunteers that came to check on the well-being of the orphans and offer a friendly face.

He had never even made any friends with the other children at the orphanage (especially not Tommy Tuttle). His lack of friendship wasn’t for want of effort or desire – he was just always aware on some deep, subconscious level that he did not fit in with anyone in his life. He couldn’t explain it; he just knew that he did not belong, and not a day went by when he didn’t wonder if he was the loneliest soul on the planet.

But, as is often remarked, no one is truly alone. We may get lost from time to time, but we are never alone. Dan might have been about as lost as anyone could possibly be, but nonetheless – though he did not know it yet – he was not alone.

It was on his twelfth birthday – May 10th, 1991 – that the events began which would reveal to Dan just how un-alone he was; and there certainly could not have been a more traumatizing way to open a young boy’s eyes.

Dan was celebrating his birthday by sitting – alone – on the orphanage common room sofa, watching Back to the Future on the television. Doc Brown was in the midst of warning Marty McFly about the dangers of interfering with the past when –

BAM!

A pair of meaty hands reached over the couch and shoved Dan to the floor.

Move it, Regal, an all-too-familiar bullish voice barked, I ain’t watchin’ this crap.

Dan hadn’t needed to hear the voice to know that the meaty hands belonged to Tommy Tuttle. Just as every schoolyard has a bully, so does every orphanage, and Tommy Tuttle was the bully of Dan’s little world.

Tommy clumsily climbed over the top of the sofa, plopped his not insubstantial rump into the complaining cushion, grabbed the remote from the sofa’s armrest, and began flipping through the channels.

Normally, Dan would have gone off to sulk, rather than invoke the wrath of Tommy Tuttle, but this was his birthday, dammit!

He stood up, his pulse pounding with anger, grabbed the remote from a startled Tommy Tuttle’s sausage-like fingers and said, I was watching that, jackass.

The look on Tommy’s face immediately made Dan regret the outburst. Imagine the look of a bull that’s just had a tennis ball thrown at its groin. That would not be far off from Tommy Tuttle’s expression.

Tommy rose menacingly from the couch, casting a dark shadow over Dan; for not only was Tommy Tuttle wide, but he was tall as well. Those two traits, combined with his short temper, made for a very unpleasant combination.

What did you say to me, shit-face? the towering Tuttle demanded.

I-I said, I w-was w-watching th-that… Dan said, omitting the closing epithet that had undoubtedly sealed his fate.

Dan watched, as if in slow motion, as the bully’s fist balled up and reared back, aiming for a perfect hit. It would not have been the first time he had received a beating from Tommy Tuttle – but he had no way of knowing right then that it would be the last.

As Tommy’s fist collided with Dan’s jaw, the world spun and Dan went flying backwards. He collided with the wall beside the television set, and fell to the floor in a stunned lump.

But Tommy was not done with him yet.

As the bully charged his prey, aiming for a kick to Dan’s ribs, Dan had a momentary fantasy of how nice it would be if he could just set Tommy Tuttle on fire and be rid of the bully once and for all.

The transition from fantasy to reality was so seamless that it took several seconds for Dan to realize that something was wrong. It wasn’t the image of Tommy bursting spontaneously into flame that had clued him in, for the imagined vision had been very vivid. It wasn’t even the screams of Tommy Tuttle, for Dan had certainly imagined the screams.

It was the smell. The smell of burning flesh and hair suddenly permeated the room in a way that Dan, even with his vivid imagination, could not possibly have conjured in his mind.

It was over in a matter of minutes, for Tommy’s screams had alerted the orphanage staff who rushed to the scene of the crime and quickly doused the flames. Dan was dragged roughly from the common room and marched to his room as one of the volunteers called 9-1-1.

Dan sat in shocked silence on his bed, violent tremors shaking his body as the terrible scene replayed itself in his memory on an endless loop. Even the sound of the ambulance departing for Mass. General couldn’t drown out the sound of Tommy’s screams ringing in Dan’s memory.

Mrs. Potts – the administrator of the orphanage, a stern, portly woman – came to his room and questioned him about what had happened. The social workers came and questioned him. The police came and questioned him. To all of them he told the same story – the truth – and every time he could see the disbelief in their eyes. But the only alternative would have been to tell them that he had actually set Tommy Tuttle on fire, and somehow he didn’t think that would have boded any better for him.

Word came from the hospital shortly thereafter that Tommy’s condition had been stabilized and that he would live. Although a relief for sure, it was by no means a complete reprieve for poor Dan’s guilt.

Naturally, Dan did not sleep very well that night as his dreams were haunted by the images and sounds of Tommy’s torment.

In the morning, when Mrs. Potts coldly announced that he had another visitor, Dan logically assumed that now it would be the psychologist, come to lock him away in a padded room in a straightjacket. Despite the severity of the situation, he couldn’t help but think that at least in a padded room he’d be able to have fun bouncing off the walls.

Following the administrator into Dan’s room was the most peculiar man Dan had ever seen. His peculiarity was not in his dark skin color, for Dan had met many volunteers at the orphanage of varying complexions and had not developed any racial biases. His peculiarity was not in his height, for he was tall, but certainly not abnormally so. He was old, but not too old for a freshly-turned twelve-year-old to comprehend – surely no older than sixty-five.

His white hair was neatly cut and his equally white beard was neatly trimmed – against his dark complexion the white hair gave him a very wise, dignified look. He wore a perfectly acceptable light-blue dress shirt with black slacks. His choice of a bright orange and yellow checkered tie was a little unusual, but even the wisest and greatest of men are allowed the occasional fashion faux pas.

No, what made this individual so peculiar – such that even the orange and yellow tie seemed perfectly normal in comparison – were his eyes. They were purple – a deep violet purple reminiscent of an amethyst. Dan had never met anyone with purple eyes before, and he was quite certain he had never heard of anyone having such an unusual optical pigmentation.

Although Dan might have found this abnormality disturbing, there was something about the gentleman’s demeanor that made him feel at ease. He emitted a grandfatherly warmth that Dan had rarely experienced in his brief twelve years of life, and there was an unmistakable twinkle in his interesting eyes that recalled to Dan a long-suppressed desire for the family he never had. Even with the slight uneasy feeling in his stomach – a result of his nervousness, he guessed – he could not help but feel comfortable in the presence of this stranger, as if he had known him his entire life.

"This is Mr…Laurent is it?" said Mrs. Potts, introducing Dan to the stranger.

Loeren, actually, corrected the stranger, offering his hand to Dan, Nevar Loeren.

Oh, I’m sorry, I’m just terrible with names, blushed Mrs. Potts.

Think nothing of it. It is admittedly not the commonest of names, so I’ve grown quite accustomed to being called by many appellations, several of which are probably best not repeated in polite company. He smiled ever so subtly and winked at Dan, who couldn’t help but grin.

Mrs. Potts, on the other hand, did not seem to know quite how to take this comment. Well…yes, I guess I’ll just leave the two of you to talk then… And with that, she fumblingly backed out and closed the door.

Mr. Loeren beamed at Dan as the door closed behind the administrator.

So, as we have established, I am Nevar Loeren, and as we have not yet established but we are both aware, you are Daniel Regal.

I prefer Dan… Dan mumbled meekly.

Ah yes, that’s nothing to be ashamed of, Dan. It’s quite proper to inform people at a first meeting of your name preference. My friends, quite naturally, call me Nevar, but as you most likely shall be attending my school, it will of course be more appropriate for you to address me as Mr. Loeren.

School?

Ah yes, of course. I do apologize for getting ahead of myself. You will find, if you have not already, that I often do just that. You see, Dan, I am the principal of a school for...‘specially gifted’ children and we have reason to believe that you might fit in quite nicely.

‘Specially gifted?’ What do you mean? You’re not here because of what happened yesterday?

Mr. Loeren chuckled slightly at this remark.

"Oh, no, I most certainly am here because of what happened yesterday, Mr. Loeren said. Your little…ahem…demonstration yesterday established fairly reasonably that you have the gifts we seek."

"Setting people on fire is a gift???" Dan asked, shocked.

Again Mr. Loeren chuckled.

In a sense, yes, he said. "Although, as long as we have broached this uncomfortable subject early on in our conversation, I suppose I must ask the question that must be asked; Why did you set Tommy Tuttle on fire?"

I didn’t! Dan exclaimed, infuriated. "I just imagined it, and it happened. I didn’t really want it to happen!"

The look on Mr. Loeren’s face stunned Dan into complete silence. It was not the look of disbelief and skepticism that he had encountered from everyone else he had told the truth to, but a look of complete understanding and maybe even satisfaction.

A very good answer, my boy, Mr. Lauren said, beaming. "Of course, you could have been lying about not really wanting it to happen, but I assure you I would have known."

Something about the man’s penetrating purple eyes made Dan believe him completely.

I certainly did not intend to imply that you had physically set Tommy on fire with a match or a flamethrower or some such device, Mr. Loeren continued. "I was merely attempting to discern whether it was your youthful emotions getting the better of you, or a more malicious intent. And you answered that question for me, so I have no qualms whatsoever about inviting you to our school.

However, I cannot overstress the importance of learning to control your emotions, Mr. Loeren continued. I’m certain that after your experience yesterday you understand why. A team of Norcinites who specialize in memory modification will be placed on the lookout here at the orphanage to help if any future outbursts occur between now and your departure, but I think you would agree that it would be best if their talents were not necessary.

I’m sorry, said Dan, overwhelmed, "but what are ‘Norcinites?’"

There are some people in the world, Mr. Loeren began to explain, who have very unique skills and abilities. We call ourselves ‘The New Race’ or ‘Norcinites’ – I personally prefer the latter term. It sounds much less self-indulgent, I think. We who have been so gifted have the ability to do things – many things – with our minds. The school of which I am Principal is the Steven Noricin School for the New Race, more commonly referred to as Snisnar.

"But, what is the New Race?" Dan asked,