Story Notes:Written circa 2002. Edited in 2009.
Let it be said, before starting this ridiculous anecdote, that it took Sage completely by surprise, and that it would be an accident he would never forget.
Early Saturday morning on May the 18th at 0830 hours, Sage was on his way down the hall carrying a load of dirty laundry in his arms. As he approached the stairs leading down into the living room, he felt an object in the pocket of one of his pairs of dirty jeans. He pulled it out and discovered that it was his armor orb.
“Oops! Don’t want that to go through the washing machine,” he said, and went to put it in his pocket.
Only, he didn’t have one. He was in boxers, a tank top, and a pair of green flip flops. Being devoid of any other place to put it, he put it to his mouth and held it carefully between his lips, and began to make his way downstairs...
At precisely 8:33, Kento poured syrup all in Cye’s hair. After a brief chase around the kitchen table, they ran out into the living room and tore up the stairs.
Sage looked over the top of his dirty laundry and he tried to scream . . . but it was too late.
Kento ran full tilt into Sage, who described a perfect arc as he went sailing into the air, scattering his laundry up into the chandelier as he smashed into Cye and then proceeded to roll down the stairs.
In the mass hysteria of the moment, Sage’s orb found its way into his mouth and down his throat. The first thing he became aware of as he came to was the feeling of the orb as it was slowly lodged into place about a quarter of the way down.
He sat up and gagged and coughed, clutching his throat, but it was no use. He gazed up at Kento and Cye with a horrified look as a few pairs of socks and underwear finally settled to the floor.
“You morons...” He closed his eyes, then began to scream. “I SWALLOWED MY ARMOR ORB!”
However, Cye and Kento only saw his lips move. Wherever the orb was in his throat, it was rendering him incapable of speech.
“Oh bloody hell,” Cye said dryly.
“What should I do?” Kento asked as Sage flailed around silently, screaming like a mime.
Cye put his hands to his face in horror. “How the hell should I know?”
They looked at each other then said, “Get Ryo.”
“Aww, the poor thing,” Mia cooed, putting a hand on Sage’s forehead.
Behind her, Rowen was chuckling. “Oh, m’ God. Huh huh huh! This’s too funny.”
Kento elbowed him. “Damn, skank. Show some love to the brother.”
“Don’t ya be damn skankin’ me, Kent HO-”
“Stop it, both of you!” Ryo snapped, and they fell silent.
He turned to Sage, who was seated on the kitchen table like a doctor’s patient. He looked almost on the verge of tears, and there was a noticeable lump in his throat.
Cye moved in with a small pen light. “Can you breathe?”
Sage rolled his eyes and mouthed, ‘Duh.’
“Hm. Alright. Can you swallow?”
He tried several times, then nodded and said, ‘A little,’ silently.
“Can you try to cough it up?”
Mia spoke. “We already tried that. It’s just no use; that thing isn’t moving.”
Rowen thought a moment, then disappeared into the hall. As the others were formulating ways to get the orb out, he came back through the door and proclaimed, “Back the hell up, y’all! I got the cure!”
They parted like the Red Sea before him and he approached Sage. He was fiddling with something in his hands, no doubt the “cure”.
“Ah! There we go!” he said cheerily, then held up the hooked end of the metal coat hanger. “Now open wide an’ say ah!”
Sage did more than just ‘ah’. He cut loose a silent wail and scrambled backwards across the table. Rowen was adamant as the others stared in horror.
“Aw, c’mon, Sage! It works on cars all the time-”
Ryo gently took the coat hanger from him.
“Okay, Rowen. Uhhh, let’s just put that on the back burner for a moment, shall we?”
Rowen frowned, then brightened up again. “I know! I’ll go get firewood!”
And he dashed off in a flurry of blue hair. Kento shook his head and turned to the others.
“I think he’s been hitting the bong again.”
“Ready, set, go!”
Sage hacked and gagged, but the orb still did not budge. Ryo plopped down in the chair, having broken into a sweat. The unfortunate blond rubbed his aching ribs.
“Right. So the football tackle approach didn’t work,” Cye read off the list of options, and put a line through the aforementioned one.
“How about the Hymen Maneuver?” Kento asked, and Ryo, Mia, Cye, and Sage stared at him. Sage in particular turned very red-faced.
“Kento, you mean the Heimlich Maneuver!” Cye snapped, embarrassed. He simply shrugged.
“Same difference. Why don’tcha let me try it?” Kento stood up and cracked his knuckles. “I’ll get that sucker out!”
Before Sage could escape, Kento grappled him about the waist and gave him a thrust with his arms that nearly sent his ribs through his spinal column. Sage wheezed considerably.
“Hey, I think it’s working!” Mia proclaimed, on the edge of her seat.
Kento gave him another crushing heft, and Rowen walked past with an armful of kindling. He gasped when he saw them and dropped the sticks.
Sage could feel the orb slowly begin to move-
“Stop that, ya perv!” Rowen shouted, and hit Kento over the head with a log.
He fell to the floor unconscious as Sage collapsed onto Cye, the orb sticking firmly back into place.
“ROWENN!” the whole room shrieked.
He cringed, then picked up his kindling. “Never mind that. Here’s some wood.” He looked brightly at them and grinned. “We’ll smoke it out!”
“Rowen,” Ryo said flatly, “shut up.”
“Hm. Okay. Now swallow.”
Sage did so. Cye’s fingers prodded at his throat, feeling the large lump. Ryo leaned forward to get a better look. “So what’s the problem?”
“The problem is,” Cye stated, “that thing is wedged in just right so as to block the air from getting post his vocal cords. It’s right up against his voice box. He’s lucky he can even get oxygen into his trachea with that thing in there.”
Kento sat backwards in the chair and asked, “So what can we do?”
The British lad shook his head. “I don’t know. We could try to remove it but it could result in permanent damage to his voice box. He might never be able to talk again.”
Horror swept across Sage’s face and he squeaked something inaudible.
“Have any of you ever heard of a hospital?” Mia demanded.
Ryo spoke up. “How can we explain to a doctor that Sage has a giant armor-transforming marble stuck in his throat?”
“Why don’t you call your armor, Sage? That might work!” Kento exclaimed, but the blond only shook his head.
“He can’t call it ‘cause he can’t talk, Sherlock,” Rowen snapped, fiddling with the tendril of blue hair that was always between his eyes as he sat next to Sage.
“Maybe he can will it on.”
“He could be seriously hurt if he does that,” Ryo muttered. “Plus, I think he’s-”
“Too weak,” Mia cut in. “Just look at him. Poor thing.”
Sage was indeed weak. Having been body-slammed and punched and bent into hideous positions that would make even the most limber of contortionists squeal . . . he was a mess.
“Hey, at least we won’t have to put up with his nagging n’ bitchin’ anymore,” Rowen muttered as he leaned back into the couch cushions. Sage was on top of him in an instant, and they both sent the couch over backwards. They had to pry Sage’s hands off of Rowen’s throat, and use a crowbar to get Rowen’s teeth unlocked from Sage’s ankle. By that time Rowen’s face matched his hair while Sage was missing chunks of flesh. Rowen spat several times.
“Barf. I got ya nasty leg hair in my mouth . . . Ohmigod! I have an idea!”
“Hope it’s better than the last one,” Kento muttered.
Rowen grabbed Sage by the wrist and dragged him up the stairs. Once at the top, he yelled, “GERONIMOOOO!” and kicked him down.
Everyone winced and grimaced as the unfortunate lad tumbled and careened off the wooden stairs until he lay there in a heap at the bottom. (If Sage had been pregnant it would have been even better.) Rowen slid down the banister as the others rushed to his side.
Cye propped Sage up and asked worriedly, “Sage! Can you hear me? Answer me, mate!”
Suddenly Sage sat bolt upright and let out a fearsome, hackle-raising, nostril-flaring, hellacious snort, and coughed the armor orb up into his lap like a sick cat.
“Oh my God,” he wheezed happily. “I can talk again!”
He jumped up and gave Rowen a bone-crushing bear hug. He was so overjoyed, he never heard him screech in extreme pain.
“Oh Rowen, thank you! You’re my hero!”
“OW! Your hair’s pokin’ me in the eye, get off!”
“I can’t believe you actually-” Sage stopped midsentence and slowly pulled back, his nose wrinkling. “Rowen, why do you smell like burning hay?”