Mirrors

By Sasquaw

Walker is at El Paso International Airport, heís been waiting for six hours to get a flight out. Outside a raging blizzard, the worse one in over forty years and he has to be stuck in it. Planes have been cancelled and the airport is closed down. Heís tried unsuccessfully to get a rental, but everything is closed. Nothing coming in or going out. He looks around at the passengers with their luggage and countless Christmas gifts. Everyone trying to get home for Christmas and he was no exception. He curses to himself, of all times to be stuck in a airport! Alex would be terribly upset if he missed this Christmas, of all times. This was Angelaís first, and even though sheís still too young to know what the big day is all about, he and Alex had looked forward to their first family Christmas.


If only he hadnít accepted to transport those prisoners back to San Francisco himself, he could have let someone else do it, Alex begged him to. The Marco brothers had killed two DPS troopers, leaving behind two grieving wives and a total of five kids. But, first they were wanted by the SFPD for killing three motorists and rape charges. Texas would have to wait to get its chance to fry them.


The snow outside is getting worse, all of the phones are being used, and passengers calling loved ones to say they might not be making it home at all. Irate at the cancellation signs going up, passengers were throwing their baggage down in the floor, looking for places to sleep. Finally one of the phones becomes empty and Walker makes a dash for it, only to be beat out by a young airman. The young man nods to Walker, he steps back and lets the young man make his call. The young man looks at him, "I wonít be long siróIíll hurry."


Walker gives him a faint smile. Thereís something about the young man that is familiar, the thought that heís seen him somewhere before. The young man is in his early twenties, about Walkerís height, and same coloring, sporting a moustache, blue/gray eyes and auburn hair. He canít help but hear part of his conversation, apparently someone is giving him a hard time about not getting home for Christmas. He seems a little embarrassed as he hangs up the phone, then nods to Walker, "Good luck, I hope your wife is better understanding than mine!"

Walker thanks him and the young man walks over, picks up his duffel bag and joins a group of other soldiers. Walker dials his number, itís picked up almost immediately. "Walker?"

"Yeah, honey itís me. Just called to say the planes are still being grounded, I canít get out!"

He can hear her almost crying, "Oh Walker, no---itís Angelaís first Christmas."

"Honey, I know thatóbut the airport is closed down, I canít even get a rental!"


"A rental! Donít you dare try to drive home in all this mess! The weather man says between here and El Paso is the worse weather heís seen in over forty years, semis are being forced off the road, the roads are like ice!"

Walker sighs and whispers, "I know hon, but Iíd take my chances rather sit in this airport for another six hours---I thought you wanted me home?"

Alex is now crying, "I want you home alive, and in one piece! Walker, please donít try to do anything stupid, we can celebrate Christmas late---just please promise me, youíll be extra careful?"

Some more soldiers are lining up to use the phone, Walker nods his head at them, "Alex, I got to go, others are wanting to use the phone---is Angela okay?"


She sniffles, "Yes, sheís sitting right here with me, Iíll put the phone to her ear, say something to her!"


Walker looks at the soldiers and then turns back around with his back to them, "Hey Angela---Daddy will be home soonóI love you."

"Walker---are you there? I think she recognized your voice---say something else!"

"Alex, I got to go----people are waiting to use the phone, Iíll call back again as soon as I know something. Give Angela a kiss for me, how are you feeling?"


Thereís a silence at the other end. "Alex, whatís wrong?"


"Nothing sweetheart, everything is fine, we miss you."


"What did the Doctor say, are you and the baby okay?"


Again he feels like sheís not telling him everything, "Alex, are you and the baby okay, is Angela okay?"

"Walker, we are all just fine---you are the one weíre worried about, call me again when you can talk, I miss you so much!"


"Okay, hon, I will, I love you---see you soon, ---I hope!" He hangs up the phone, the young soldiers practically run him over trying to get to it. He spies the coffee machine and walks towards it, the same young airman he seen earlier on the phone was taking his coffee out. He sees Walker and nods to him, Walker nods back.


"Did you get through to your wife?"


"Yeah, sheís not too happy with me right now." Walker answers. Walker puts his money in the machine, a "SOLD OUT" flashes on the machineís window. He curses.

The young airman offers him his coffee, "Here, take mine!"


Walker shakes his head, "I canít take your coffee!"

"Sure you can, my wife says I drink too much as it is!"

Walker nods his head, "Yeah, mine too---sheís got me on decaf---I hate that stuff!!"

The airman laughs, "Well, Iíll tell you what, Iíll drink half---and then you can have the rest---howís that"?


Walker looks at the young man, what is it about him that makes Walker think he knows him from somewhere. He starts to ask the man his name, when some of his friends yell to him. The airman finishes his half of the coffee and then hands it to Walker, "My friends are trying to get up a card game, want to join us?"


"Noóno thanks, Iím going to check the flights again---thanks anyway!" The airman goes to join his buddies, Walker goes to check on the flights, and theyíre still being cancelled. He asks again about getting a rental car, no such luck. He shows them his badge, and they still refuse. The security policeman tells him the roads have gotten worse, the snowplows are out, but the roads are freezing over faster than they can plow them.


"Damn it!" he mumbles to himself, shifting his carry-on bag to his other hand and looking at his watch. Itís now 3pm, only nine hours to go till it will be Christmas Eve. The airport is so packed that people are starting to fight over spaces in the floor and up against the wall, anywhere they can
stretch out. The security police are busy trying to keep the peace and watch for pickpockets. He walks towards the phones again, theyíre all busy. Alex tried to get him to carry a cell phone, but he refused, now heís regretting it, big time! He spots a candy machine and starts to put in his change when he realizes he only has seventy-five cents left in change, heíll need thirty-five cents of that for his call, again cursing because he didnít bring his phone card either. He spots an empty place up against the wall and he grabs it. Someone has left an Enquirer rag/mag on the floor, Walker picks it unconsciously and starts flipping through it. "Why does anyone ever read this trash," he asks himself, and then he laughs, "because theyíre stuck in an airport with nothing else to do, thatís why!" He continues flipping through it, and then a story catches his eye.


CHUCK NORRIS AND WIFE HAVE TWIN SONS


Walker looks at the picture of Norris and his wife, they are each holding one of the twins. Walker shakes his head and smiles, remembering the day his daughter was born, the mid morning feedings, and changing. He smiles and mumbles, "twins---man, are you going to have your hands full---but then you got a mansion full of nannies and maids to help take care of yours!"


He looks back to the phones, still busy. He hears some voices over in the far corner as the young airman and his buddies are highly engrossed in their card game. Walker looks back at the magazine, he wonders if Chuck Norris has ever been stuck in an airport. He shakes his head, "The man probably has his own private airplane and pilots to fly it."


Thereís a story on Chuck Norrisí career in films, and his six time champion kick boxing titles. Walker looks at the pictures of the man, so many people had told him that he resembled Norris. At first he didnít want to believe it, he had never met the man but it seems their paths were always crossing in some way or another. Walker was a champion kick boxer too, and he had studied in the orient along the same time as Norris, they were born in Oklahoma, and they were of Cherokee heritage. The only time Walker had come close to meeting Chuck Norris was when Norris came to Dallas for a rodeo benefit, as luck would have it, Walker was late getting into town and didnít go to the rodeo. He walks into C.D.ís and everyone stares at him. Alex is sitting at the end of the bar, a guilty look on her face. Walker nods to C.D. and Trivette and then kisses Alex. Everyone continues to stare. Walker looks down at his pants, thinking he had forgotten to zip up. He turns to his friends, "What?"

C.D. and Trivette shake their heads, "Amazing---the resemblance is amazing!"

Walker looks to Alex, and whispers, "What are they talking about?"

"Chuck Norris!! Thatís who weíre talking about, he was just hereóright here in my establishmentónot more than an half hour ago," C.D. rants.


Walker looks at them, "Here---right here?"


Trivette nods his head and looks at Alex, who is being very quiet, "Yep, he was here, real nice guy---wasnít he Alex?"


Alex smiles, "Yes---he was very nice."

Trivette and C.D. look to Alex and start teasing her, "Come on Alex---tell Walker what happened!"


"Yeah, Alex, tell Cordell what happened---or rather yet---tell usówhoís the better kisser, Cordell or Chuck Norris?"

Walker stares at Alex, "Whatís that suppose to mean--- Chuck Norris kissed you?"


Alex turns around to her friends, they wonít let the teasing drop, "Nope, she kissed him!"

Walkerís face is getting red, "You kissed him? You kissed Chuck Norris?"


Alex bites her bottom lip and looks at him, "I thought he was you!"

C.D. scoffs and Trivette laughs, "Oh, sure Alex---yeah right!!! And, how long have you and Walker been dating, ---come on Alex, you knew that wasnít Walker---you did it on purpose!"

"JIMMY!" Alex throws her purse at him, "I did notóI did not know it wasnít you honey---I swear!"


Walker stares at her, "Well, how long did it take you to realize you were kissing the wrong man?"

Alex stammers, "Well--- not right away---but soon!"

C.D. and Trivette crack up laughing, as C.D explains. "Cordell, it was all innocent enough, Chuck came in here with some friends, they were all joking around and some one put a cowboy hat on Chuckís head. He had his back to the door when Alex came in, she thought he was you, she threw her arms around him and gave him one great big kiss!"


Trivette starts smacking his lips and making kissy soundsó"Yep, right on his lips---one, big, sloppy kiss!"

Walker stares at each off them, Alex says softly, "Are you mad?"


"Well, what did this Norris guy do when you kissed him?"

C.D. yells, "He kissed her back!"

Trivette gives Walker a look of disbelief, "What would any red bloodied male do, if a good looking woman like Alex kisses him?"

Walker looks to Alex, "Youíre right about that."

She walks up to him slowly and tilts her head down, "Are you mad?"

He lets her stew for a minute, "No, I guess not." He reaches over to kiss her softly, and then he puts up his finger and shakes it at her, "But you just remember this little episode when Christine Brinkley ever comes into town!!!"

Walker is still staring at the magazine when one of the phones becomes empty, he jumps up and runs to it. He dials his number, it rings and rings, until finally Alex picks it up. "Walker?"


"Alex----what took you so long to answer the phone, are you alright?"

"Honey, I picked it up on the second ring."

Walker shakes his head, it had rung seven times, what was she talking about.

"Walker---you there?"

"Iím here Alex---are you and Angela okay?"

"Yes, weíre fine, ---Walker I can barely hear you---whatís wrong with the phone lines?"

"Must be all of the ice, someone said some of the lines were down!"

"Walker! Honey, are you there?"


The static is getting worse, it clears for a few seconds and Walker again tells her he canít get a flight out. He hears her crying, but sheís trying hard to hide it, "Okay---then we will just have her Christmas late, weíll have a special extra Christmas when you get home."


Walker suddenly feels very alone, he thinks about the gifts he has for Alex and Angela in his carry-on bag, matching lockets for each of them, a music box that plays "Nadiaís Theme" for Angela, and something extra special for Alex. "Okay, hon, Iím going to try and get some sleep. You never did tell me what the doctor said, are you and the baby okay?"

The static starts up again, "I didnít want to tell you this on the phone---but I guess Iíd betterÖ"

"What?" Walker is getting worried, "What is it youíre not telling me?"

"Walker, weÖ"

The phone goes dead. He slams the receiver down and then hurriedly starts re-dialing. He keeps dialing as fast as he can, a busy signal and then it goes dead again, this time keeping his last .35! He lets out a curse word, looking around to see if anyone has any change, they all turn their backs on him. He sees the young airman walking towards him, he yells at him, the young man comes over.


"Do you have any change?"


"Sure!---I just got lucky in my card game" and he hands Walker a handful of change.

Walker desperately starts dialing again, the operator comes on, all the lines are down.

Walker slams the phone down, the young man backs up, "Now, I can understand why your wife says you drink too much coffee!!"


Walker thanks the young man and then he heads back to where he was sitting. He leans back against the wall, and exhales. His mind is racing, he keeps wondering what Alex was about to tell him before the line went dead. He rubs his eyes, and then he takes their picture out. He always kept their picture in his breast pocket, right near his heart. It was one of the first pics taken of Alex and Angela when they brought the baby home. It was a picture of Alex nursing Angela. Alex warned him that she didnít want to end up in a 1 hr photo lab, with her breasts in plain view. So, he took it to a friend and had him develop it. He carried the picture with him, every day.

"Got some room for a tired fly-boy?"

Walker looks up to see the young man and immediately moves over, gesturing for him to sit down. The airman looks over at Walker as heís still staring at the picture.

"Wife and kid?"

Walker looks back at him and hands the picture to him, with not even a second thought that this perfect stranger would be looking at his wifeís bosom.


The man smiles, "How old is your little girl?"

Walker grins from ear to ear, "She was seven months the 19th of December!"

"Sheís beautiful----your wife---is beautiful too" and then the young man hands Walker back his picture. He looks at it, then puts it back in his breast pocket.

"Have you got any kids?" he asks the airman.

"Got one on the way, our first," he answers.

Walker nods, "Yeah, we got another one on the way, too!"


"Wow, you believe in keeping them close together, donít you?"

Walker laughs, "Yeah. We hadnít planned on having another one so soon, but---things happen, and weíre really excited about it!"


The man sighs, "I am so nervous about being a Father----were you nervous the first time?"

"Like you wouldnít believe, but---thereís not another feeling like it in the world. When they place that little life in your hands for the first time----itís a miracle from heaven, knowing that little person is a part of you and the woman that you want to spend the rest of your life with."

The man nods, "I canít wait."


Walker looks at the young man, he still canít figure it out what there is about him that is so familiar, he feels he knows him, but, from where? "Just getting back from overseas, where were you?"

The man puts his duffle bag behind his head, "Osan---Osan, Korea!"

Walker sighs, "Osan, huh---Iíve been there."

"Are you Air Force?"

"Nope---Marines!"

The man laughs, "Marines?---I wonít hold that against you!"

The two men laugh together, Walker canít remember ever liking someone so fast, he usually stands back and lets his Cherokee intuition take over about first impressions. He feels completely at ease with this young man. "Where you heading?"

"Oklahoma, up around Lone Grove, you ever been there?"

Walkerís eyes light up, "Of course, I was raised around that area, near the Cherokee reservation!"

The man looks at Walker, heís not surprised what Walkerís reaction is, he too has the Cherokee blood running through him. He nods, "Iím going to try and. catch forty winks---can you wake me if anything should change?"

"Sureógo ahead. " Walker looks at his watch, itís almost 6pm. Walker keeps staring at the young man as he sleeps, hands folded across his chest, the same way Walker sleeps. Heís got the same color of hair as his, and his eyes are blue/gray. The moustache is thick, strong chin, and from the looks of his physique, the young man is in good shape. Heís been asleep for about twenty minutes when the noise wakes him. Some men are hassling an older couple, wanting their seats. The old man is trying to fight back, the younger one pushes him.

Walker stands up, "If thereís one thing I canít standÖ."

"Itís a bully," the young man finishes Walkerís sentence.


The two of them walk over to the bullies, the young one speaks, "Leave them alone!"

Two of the men walk up to the airman, "Or what? What you going to do, fly boy?"

The young man stares him down, "Youíre already doing it."

"What?"

Itís now time for Walker to finish the sentence, "Making asses of yourselves!!"


The biggest one looks to Walker and then to the young man, "And who have we got here----the Bobbsey twins?"

Without another word, the two men strike out, Walker kicks the first man in the head, sending him backwards. The young man buts head with the other one, and then gives him a clothesline karate chop, right across the neck. Two more thugs jump into the fight. Walker and the young man jump up in the air at the same time, delivering chops to the backs of their opponentís heads, down on the floor spinning, tripping the thugs, and then pulling their opponentís arms back until they feel their opponents give in.


The four men get up and start to stagger off, the young man calls them back, "Arenít you forgetting something?" He nods towards the old couple, "Tell them youíre sorryÖ"

"And you better mean it, "chimes Walker.


The four men mutter their apologies, the airport starts clapping and cheering. The young manís buddies come running over to him, pounding him on the back. They start pulling the young man over to their area.

Walker looks at them and heads back to his place against the wall. A few minutes later, the young man comes back and sits back down. Walker looks at him, "Black belt?"

He nods, "And you?"


Walker nods. They talk about the arts and the time they were both at Osan, Korea and their teachers. The young man smiles, "Thatís my goal, to open up a karate school. My brother and I are trying to get the financing now. When I get home and everything is all set, then he and I will be going to L.A. to purchase our first school."

"Thatís great, I wish you a lot of luck, I have a school in Dallas, if you need a good word, tell your backers to give me a call, my name is Cordell Walker!"

The young man shakes Walkersí hand, "Iíve noticed you carry a gun, are you a policeman?"

"Texas Ranger," Walker replies.

Just as the man starts to introduce himself his buddies start yelling and motioning for him to come over. He excuses himself, and goes to see what they want. They seem to be arguing, and theyíre pulling on his coat. He pulls away from them and walks back to Walker. "My friends think they have a ride out of here, they want me to go with them. Some trucker theyíve reached on the CB has offered them a ride if they can get out of the airport, so I guess Iíll go with them."

Walker stands up, looking at the confusion in his eyes. "You know, I have this Uncle that tells me I should rely on my instincts, and if for some reason you have second thoughts about going with your friends, I think I would listen."

"I am having second thoughts---just a weird feeling I canít describe it, itís never been this strong before----I guess itís my Cherokee intuition kicking in."

They stand there looking at each other and then the young man walks back to his friends, they leave without him. Walker and the young man sit back down and the young man picks up the magazine, and flips through it. Now Walker decides to grab some sleep, he puts his carry-on bag up against his head, folds his arms and heís asleep. The airman looks at him, runs his hand over his own face, and says to himself, "Maybe I should grow a beard, now that I know what Iíd look like with one." He reads the magazine and then reaches over and puts it in Walkerís bag.

Walker is awakened by someone tugging on his shoulder, "Hey, Walker---the planes are getting out, the cancellation to Dallas has been lifted, theyíre calling out your flight!"

Walker jumps up and starts getting his boarding pass ready, the young man is checking his flight to Oklahoma City, "Hey---mineís ready, too." The two stare at other, Walker starts to say something and the young man stops him, "Itís been good knowing you, Walker."

Walker shakes his hand, a nice firm grip. He looks at him, "Who are you, I feel I know you ---from somewhere?"

The flight s are being called to board, the young man starts to walk off and then he turns to Walker and says, "I guess you could say---you gave me life!"

Walker is confused, "What?"

The young man points to the magazine in Walkerís bag, "You didnít read the whole story, did you?"


Walker looks down at the Enquirer sticking out of his bag, "What story?"

The man smiles back at him, and writes something down on a piece of paper, folds it and puts it in the bag, "If youíre ever in L.A.---look me up---would love to spar with you," and then he takes off running down the ramp. He stops and waves at Walker, Walker waves back.

"Mister-----mister, wake up, weíve landed, you can get off now."


Walker raises up and looks around him, he doesnít even remember getting on the plane. Everything is foggy to him as he makes his way through the airport, he looks outside the big windows, the storm has cleared. He shakes his head and says "What a dream that was!"† He hails the shuttle bus and it takes him to his Ram, he throws his bags in and heads for home.† Alex meets him at the door, throwing her arms around his neck and kissing him. "Wow, what a coming home present," he replies. He drops his bags and they head upstairs to the nursery.† He gently walks over to look at his sleeping daughter; sheís dressed in a Santa Claus outfit that her Uncle Jimmy and Aunt Ericka have bought her. Walker has to hold her, he reaches over and picks her up, and she immediately curls up in his arms, pulling on his shirt and pressing against his chest. He kisses her and then lays her back down, "Merry Christmas, my little Angel."


He and Alex walk to their bedroom, where he takes her into his arms for a long and tender kiss, "I got something for you," he whispers.

She smiles up at her cowboy, "I donít want anything, but you," and she pulls him towards their bed.

Later they are lying in bed and Walker starts telling Alex about the dream he had. She looks at him in disbelief, "You were having a dream about Chuck Norris?"

Walker nods slowly, "Yep, it all started with that story in the Enquirer, and then there was this young airman. I kept thinking I knew him from somewhere, he never did tell me his name, but Alex, it was so weird----he put me in mind---of myself---when I was younger!"

"And he gave you no clue to who he was?"

Walker starts thinking back to what the airman said, "He said I gave him life!"

Alex looks at her husband, "Honey, are you trying to tell me something, you gave him life-----could he have been your son?"

Walker looks at Alex, "I donít know---he was the right age----and he said he was in Osan and other parts of the orient---, I donít know---I just donít know----maybe?"

Alex stares back at him, then suddenly Walker jumps out of bed and starts to the door, "The magazine---he said I didnít read the whole story, Iíll be right back!"

Alex gets out of bed, totally confused, wondering if Walker did have a son, she couldnít think straight. Sheís walking around, dazed, Walker might have a son----but it was just a dream!

Walker comes back into the room and hands Alex the magazine, "You better read this, the last two paragraphs!" Walker sits down on the end of the bed as Alex reads: Chuck Norris and his wife Gina had twin sons, born the 19th of September. The starís family and oldest son, Michael were all on hand to congratulate the happy couple. Son, Michael says they often relate to the time their Father was caught in a snowstorm in El Paso, and itís times like this they give extra thanks to the Lord for their Father being with them today. Mr. Norris comes up and puts a loving arm around his grown son saying, "That if it hadnít been for a certain man that was in the airport with me, I wouldnít be here today".


The reporter asks, "Do you care to elaborate, Mr. Norris?"

"Over forty years ago I was just getting home from Osan, Korea, I was coming home to finish out my enlistment, when I got snowed in at the airport in El Paso. I struck up a conversation with this bearded man, he reminded me of someone that I should know. We became good friends, we had a lot in common. My buddies decided to catch a ride from a trucker, they wanted me to go with them, after talking to my friend---I decided not to go. I found out later that the truck had crashed into a snow plow, killing everyone instantly. That man saved my life---I guess you could sayóhe gave me life---a new one."


The reporter nods his head in disbelief, the two oldest Norris boys, both in their forties respond, "Gives you goose bumps, donít it? It does us, every time Dad tells us that story."

The reporter looks at Chuck Norris and asks, "Do you know who this man was?"

Mr. Norris replies, "Of course, Iíll never forget him, his name was Walker, Walker, Texas Ranger!"

Alex looks over her husband, heís got a folded up piece of paper in his hand, debating on looking at it.


"Honey, this so weird, this story was printed the 1st of October, but all of those things, your dream ---all happened forty years ago." She crosses over to him, urging him to unfold the piece of paper. He opens it up, TOP KICK KARATE SCHOOL, owner and teachers, CHUCK AND AARON NORRIS, and at the bottom is a phone number and signature.

They lay in bed thinking about all thatís happened. Walker shakes his head, "Do you believe this---Alex I was in a dream, or was it a dream? All these years, so many people have told me that I resemble him, and our paths have always been like mirrors, our careers, and so forth!"

Alex puts her hands on her husbandsí chest, his heart is beating so fast, trying to comprehend the last 24 hrs. "Sweetheart, Uncle Ray always told you that everyone has a purpose in life---you were in that dream---to save Chuck Norrisí life,---if he had gotten in the truck with his buddies, he would be dead. You talked him out of going!" She reaches up and kisses his cheek, "And the similarities of your two lives donít just end here, because thereís something else you two have in common!"


Walker turns to her, "What?"

She smiles back at him, "Sweetheart, Chuckís wife had their twins on the 19th of September---thatís the day I conceived----and honey-----the sonogram says---weíre having twins!"



The End

June 4, 2001