If Mom’s voice wasn’t the last one I expected to hear then, it would be hard to name a less likely one.
Ok, not that hard. Dad’s would be less likely.
Rachel turned and her eyes widened. “Mom?”
She’d been saying something to Jaclyn, but she stepped toward Mom as Jaclyn stepped out of her way. Jaclyn blinked, and muttered something to Rachel.
I missed whatever it was, and I’m not sure Rachel caught it.
Not sure where else to go, I said, “We could go to the lab. It’s over—“
Quietly, Mom said, “I know where it is.”
Given that she was down here, it made sense that she would. Given that she’d never made any reference to it during the entire rest of my life… Well, it felt a little weird. Continue reading Spin: Part 8
Then Travis turned his attention back to Daniel’s dad. “OK, you said that your dad, the Mentalist saw this coming. What did he see?”
Quickly shaking his head, Mindstryke said, “It’s not exactly like that. For my dad, Daniel, and I, precognition comes without a lot of control at first. Seconds in the future are easiest. Everything else comes unasked for, but over time you become better at directing it. The problem is that there isn’t just one future, there’s an infinite number. Some of the differences aren’t much, but they’re there.
“My dad got to the point that he could see futures as collections of connected events, and even look for specific outcomes. He gave us patterns of events we should look for and a few spots where we can intervene. Mostly though, we can’t. We guess it’s because you’ll become too reliant on us, and unprepared when you need to handle things yourselves.
“And that leads us to today. We were going to wait on handing over direct control to you, but we can’t. You’ve just gotten too much attention. As of now, the League’s business issues need you to have the power to make decisions. We won’t have time to handle it. The staff doesn’t have the authority.”
“The staff?” Travis sounded confused. “The only staff I know about is Kayla.”
Continue reading Spin: Part 7
“Wow,” I said, “you’re early.”
Mindstryke shook his head. “Not really. I told you the latest we’d be here was ten, and some of us happened to finish up earlier than expected.”
He was right. Now that he’d mentioned it, I remembered him saying that. I also remembered a couple other things he’d said.
“We’re still waiting on part of the current League, and one member of the board.”
I was about to ask him who that was when the words, “Entered: Accelerando, C. Retinal scan confirmed,” appeared on the bottom of my screen.
Shortly after that one of the tunnel doors swung open, and Jaclyn walked through with her grandfather. She wore her purple costume—not really more than a jumpsuit, but she didn’t need it for protection. The hard part was creating a fabric that could handle hitting the speed of sound. Continue reading Spin: Part 6
By the time our food came, anyone who had wanted an autograph had one. There weren’t that many people in the restaurant after all.
A fair number of them pointed phones in our direction. It didn’t make me feel better. It’d be really annoying if one of us accidentally used a real name. We’d probably see it all over the internet in hours.
Daniel’s voice popped into my head. It gets worse. One of them already called a television station, and they’re sending out a reporter.
What? It was all I could do not to say it out loud. Why didn’t you say something?
It’s no big deal, Daniel said. The nearest TV station is half an hour from here. Our food should be here sooner.
Hoping that no one thought to bribe the cooks, I looked over the room again, and didn’t see anything unusual. Continue reading Spin: Part 5
Quickly Haley said, “I’m not saying it’s a bad idea, but were you planning on going in costume? I don’t think any of us have real clothes along.”
I thought about that, imagining going into restaurant as we were. For all I knew, Izzy might sometimes use what she was wearing as workout clothes. Plus, eating with the Rocket suit’s helmet on was possible, but ugh…
Then I said, “Do you think IHOP does take out?”
She said, “Nick, everybody does take-out.” She straightened up in her seat. “So let’s go. I’m hungry too.”
From behind us, Cassie said, “Good. Because if you were going to say that we shouldn’t get food, I was really going to argue.”
Continue reading Spin: Part 4
Mindstryke nodded. “She’s right, but it’s not going to be all bad. It’ll be hard to deal with at first, but it could be worse.”
He glanced to the right, toward something off camera. When his eyes were on us again, he said, “You’ve just experienced what would be a life changing event for some capes. You stopped St. Louis from being destroyed and did it with minimal loss of life. If you want, you’ll be interviewed every day of the week. People will want to pay you thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars for product endorsements. You’ll be celebrities.”
He stopped, gave a sigh, and continued. “I’ve known a lot of people who used events like this to change careers. They stayed in just far enough that they were visible vigilantes, but they spent the rest of their time being ‘the man who saved St. Louis.’” Continue reading Spin: Part 3
I stared at the screen. “The board? As in the League’s board or the Defenders’?”
Mindstryke shook his head. “Not the Defenders’ board, the League’s. But that’s for later. Right now I’d like you to explain what happened from the point where you first became aware this was possible through to your response.”
We did. Rachel told him about first hearing about the possibility in Infinity City. I described how I’d recognized a clue after months of searching. Then everybody explained their individual part in the plan.
He nodded as we talked, no longer smiling, but taking notes, and asking questions.
After we were done, he said, “Ok, I’ll summarize this, and then we’ll go over what to talk about and what to skip if someone asks you about it.
Continue reading Spin: Part 2
Haley landed the jet in the parking lot between the storage building and the factory.
We’d arrived less than an hour before, and aside from a little debris from the bombs, it didn’t look much different. It was lighter (past the factories and warehouses, the eastern sky glowed), and the tornado sirens were still going, but it was close to the same.
An inch of snow still covered the ground, and the temperature felt cold—if not as cold as Michigan.
For that matter, all the buildings that had been standing when we arrived were still standing. The ones that weren’t visible from here.
Still, it felt like we’d been there a week.
Continue reading Spin: Part 1