I was unlocking my door on Fifth Floor at Berry College’s Dana Hall in the fall of 1993. I caught a peripheral glance out of the corner of my eye of another student doing the same a few doors down. We met each other’s eyes.
I couldn’t believe it.
It was Kennon Brooks.
Kennon and I had previously attended Brevard College at the same time and, then, unbeknownst to either of us, had both transferred to Berry.
There was a joyous exclamation along with high fives, hellos and probably even a hug when we saw each other that day.
Kennon had been one of the kind souls on my hall at Brevard College who not only tolerated, but encouraged me and my mischievous roommate Jeremy in our shenanigans. He was also gregarious and kind. Though a star on our basketball team, he would be the guy who wouldn’t knock on your door if you were playing guitar too late, but might join in the fun, especially on the weekends.
It was great to see a familiar face at Berry where I first arrived.
Thought Kennon and I lived in different orbits those final years at Berry – basketball team and English majors don’t cross paths by nature – we always enjoyed seeing each other and hanging out.
Of course, life happens and, well, that was a long time ago in a galaxy far away.
I hadn’t heard from Kennon in almost two decades when ye olde facebook linked us.
When Alexandria Rising was published, he bought it. And loved it. It was a great encouragement when he posted a photo of the book on his fb page. After I named a character after our mutual friend Spota, he quipped that I should name a character after him. So, of course I did. Here is one of the scenes where Kennon Brooks – chief of security at Lux Engineering – is featured.
‘The static of a walkie talkie buzzed in the room.
“One second, Rand,” Eliot said, then reaching under one of the legal pads he pulled out the device. The long fingers liver spotted and delicate clicked it on.
“Sir, we’ve found a device sir.” A rich Scottish brogue, only intensified by the hum of the static. “On Dr. Lightfoot, she – ”
“Slow down. A device?” curiosity ringed Eliot’s voice. Rand’s brow furrowed.
“Yes. She had a device. A tracking device. Implanted in her. Very well done, sir, exceptionally small, excellent insertion and activation according to the doctors. Only perceptible when we were scanning her for broken bones or other physical ailments as part of our heath check in –”
“She’s not one of them,” Rand said, his voice rising as he half rose in his chair “She’s not!”
Eliot motioned him to sit down with a slight lift of the hand.
“Sorry Kennon. Just one of our team. Please continue.”
“Ah, aye, sir. We don’t think she was aware of this. Like I said, it was a plant.”
Thanks to Kennon and all of those for being part of the journey.