REBORN NAME: Mr. Eturnal aka The BlackMan
GIVEN NAME: Travis Eugene Turner
OCCUPATION: Truck Driver / Package Delivery man
RELATIVES: Mother, Father [deceased], 2 kids, wife (separated).
KNOWN AFFILIATION: Grim Reaper | Tilma Jones | The Easter Bunny
EDUCATION: BA in IT | Has a trade degree in Auto Mechanics & Engineering
PERSONALITY: Is a realist but his jovial personality traits shine. He is a “glass half full” kind of person who sees the good side in almost everything. Travis is great with kids, is high-spirited comedic person. It is quite hard to bring his happy-go-lucky mood down.
POWERS/SKILLS: Good with his hands and can build or fix most mechanical devices whether big or small. Has all conceivable power over shadows. Super strength, can travel as fast a shadow can appear…or disappear.
PARAPHERNALIA: Costume changes slightly to reflect his mood. Generally always adorns a black cowl or hood, black shadow armor and cape.
Judge: “In the case of Travis E. Turner vs. Roxanne L. Turner, I hereby decree that Mrs. Turner would have primary custody of 10 year old Jason Andrew Turner and 6 year old Robyn Ciara Turner. Mr. Turner would be allowed weekend visitation at the discretion of the mother at a place of her choosing …”
The judge could as well have stopped right there because Travis was no longer listening. He wished there weren’t so many eyes on him so he could sink into the floor and escape from this torturous situation. It sucked but he knew that he had brought part of it on himself.
It was almost a year to the day that Travis learned his wife of thirteen years had been cheating on him with her boss from the firm where she worked part-time. Travis originally thought he had merely opened those closet doors, but looking back at that night he remembered ripping them off in his fit of rage. Everything from there was a mixture of screaming voices, broken household items and bruises on both sides of the argument.
Somehow, it ended with everyone outside yelling at each other with little regard for the audience they were drawing, and the fact that they were sharing their conflict with the entire neighborhood. Truth be told, most of what happened that night was a blur for Travis but it seemed Roxanne’s quick witted lawyer boyfriend remembered everything in vivid enough detail to testify that he was an unfit father, and a risk to his children. It made Travis’ blood boil all over again that he had to sit and listen to this disgusting human who had just destroyed his life speak of a loving, year-long relationship with his wife.
He was acting as though he wasn’t talking about another man’s wife and kids. He made it seem as though Travis was the outsider to his own wife and kids.
Far beyond the fact that he really wanted to keep his job, was the fact that he wasn’t going to be that angry black man that tripped out at work, so they can call the police and local tv station. He composed himself the best he could and snuck out the janitor’s closet. The best part of miraculously finding himself suddenly in the building was that he would be on time to get his early-delivery bonus!
After he submitted the paper work and swiped his card right before the 12am mark. That alone deserved one of his infamous dougies. His wife hated that he danced when he was happy or excited. She said he was propagating the stereotype that black people didn’t have any control over themselves. Although he could see where she was coming from, he always believed that life was just too short to limit how you could express when you felt good. So he had his quick boogie session, said his goodbyes to the security crew on duty and headed out the door.
The truck should be to his left, about a block across the street and then straight ahead so he hurried off in that direction. He hoped that some hooligan hadn’t passed by and stolen it but sure enough, there it was just where he remembered it being. A hurried inspection seemed to indicate that everything was as it should be. This was mugging territory. He had no intention of being in one spot for too long and making a target of himself. Just as Travis got in the truck he heard a voice calling out to him. “Hey Black Man!” When he looked out the window he realized it was a child.
The boy was wearing a color-striped shirt that had a generic superhero in the center, and dirty jeans that had been cuffed at the bottom as if to keep his pants out of the dirt. He had his hair styled in that awful bowl cut Travis remembered from his own childhood. He gripped an action figure tightly to his chest that had the arms broken off, while his huge brown eyes stared up at Travis.
It was truly intense, and it made Travis feel more than just a little uneasy to be regarded in such a way. “Hey lil man,” Travis finally replied, “You’re out of bed pretty late. Does your mom know where you’re-“
“I saw you.” The boy said in an as a matter-of-fact manner.
The bluntness of the statement took Travis by surprise, and made him suspect there was no getting around this kid with some mumbo jumbo story. Fear started to creep into his heart again but this time it was a different kind of worry. He figured that if the wrong kind of people found out that he had gained a strange ability then he’d be a lab rat of the Government for the rest if his life. Travis had found himself in quite a pickle.
“What do you mean – What did you see?” he asked, hoping that the child had only seen his tantrum on the street.
“I saw you. I heard a yell and I saw you punching your truck.”
Travis breathed a small sigh of relief. His secret was safe. “Well, that was very naughty of me but-“
“…then you fell into the side of your truck! You touched the …shadow. You know, the black of the truck. You touched the black of the truck and just disappeared. Where’d you go?” the boy continued.
Travis was dumbfounded and all his fear came rushing back like a tsunami. He had no idea what to say because he didn’t even know where he had went his self. Well, he knew where he went but, he didn’t know where he went to get to where he got.
“I, um, well I just … went inside the truck for a while.” The lie sounded just as lame outside of his head as it did inside of it but, he figured ‘no guts no glory’ and continued anyway. “Didn’t you see me get in?”
A nervous laugh escaped his mouth. He wished he could curl into a ball and reappear somewhere else right now. He was a grown man and a little boy had him stuttering with shame in the streets like a punk.
“My mom said it’s not good to lie.” The boy said after a while.
“Great. Now I’m getting advice from Erkel’s love child.” Travis thought shaking his head in shame. “Maybe I should punch the truck again and see if it would take me home.” He actually looked at the truck in the hopes that some clue as to what he should do would magically appear. However, he had no such luck. It was just him, this stupid truck and a little boy that wouldn’t stop interrogating him.
“Hey BlackMan!” the boy called out.
Travis thought twice about ignoring him but, he reluctantly responded with an exasperated, “What’s up?”
He really didn’t have the energy or patience to deal with the barrage of questions he knew children usually had for things that intrigued them. His two children at home made him well versed in how to bob and weave when they threw similar punches. It already felt like he got clipped by a haymaker, so he wasn’t keen on lining himself up to get the full blow, but he didn’t think he could dismiss the child without feeling badly about it later.
“It’s OK to have secrets. My mom said grownups have secrets all of the time. It’s alright if you don’t want to tell me where you went, but it was so cool how you did it. Can you do it again?” the little boy asked. The child’s eyes flashed wild with anticipation.
Travis had really stepped in it now. Despite his better judgment, he had let this boy who was barely the age of his 10yr old work boots continue to interrogate him, knowing all the while that he did not have any answers for him. Now, the rascal wanted him to do the trick again but, he didn’t even know what “it” was in the first place! He looked into the boy’s eyes and saw the excitement and expectation dancing around in them.
When it came to children, Travis had always had a very kind heart, so he truly wished that he could fulfill the boy’s desires but he didn’t know how, and he wasn’t convinced that he should. Truthfully, he was ready to have this night come to an end so he could wake up tomorrow to find that it had all been a bad dream. He sat back down in the seat of his delivery truck for a second thinking about the whole thing. The child’s gaze felt like it was burning a hole into his forehead but Travis didn’t have the heart to meet his eyes because he had already knew he couldn’t perform the trick again. So without looking back, he told the boy to go stand back on the sidewalk as a well-known warning about the danger of being in the street with cars. The boy said “okay” in a sad tone and followed direction out of disappointment. As soon as Travis could see the kid’s foot touch the curb in his rear-view mirror, he put his truck in gear and drove away.