Sitting back in the ratty Barcalounger and closing his eyes, clearing his mind of all extemperaneous data. He was in the middle of a thick, luxurious black pool of nothingness and he was searching for an orange sweater.
The empath waited for a few minutes but nothing broke the surface of his vision. Sloane cleared with a quick shake of his head. Some days were like that. He would try again.
He wondered about theology for a brief second. If the Vedic texts were accurate and there was indeed such a thing as reincarnation, why did he always feel their deaths and never their resultant rebirths?
They sent him to a clinical psychologist who in turn sent him to a small university in upstate New York for testing and evaluation. He wasn't quite sure but supposed that this was the time that his talents came to the attention of the federal government. Who would have guessed that there were whole departments of the governmental machine dedicated to people like him?
While his test results were much higher than the national mean and average, what the experts didn't understand is that the gift was at its strongest when it came freely of its own accord. To try to force it would invariably lead to mixed results.
After his father's funeral he thought that he had experienced a mini nervous breakdown, as if he blamed himself and his telepathic powers for his father's unfortunate demise. He started boozing it up at that point, and found that alcohol had a decidedly negative effect on his mental ability. It had its purposes, it certainly felt good to turn off the constant signal now and again but he suffered debilitating migraines and hangovers that caused him to ultimately swear the stuff off.
Paul had Kansas in a blowout and learned a valuable lesson. If you tried to harness the power for personal gain, somewhere along the line, it would blow up and you would get spanked. Guy could even lose his head.
Bundling his jacket, the empath made his way back to his apartment building and decided to take the stairs up the five floors, starting to jump two at a time for a couple of floors before his cardiac health and better judgement forced him to slow down.
Frauds and charlatans. He hadn't asked for his gift but it was his lot in life and he would use it in service of his country. Sloane was not really a political sort, he really didn't care who was in power - was it the liberal conservatives or the christian democrats this week ? - he could barely remember.
He exchanged a grunt of introductions that passed without any real care or meaning. He was simply a tool to these types. He had seen their like before. His presence in the meeting was necessary but still unseemly to these hardened veterans of the cold war.