“Okay,” I typed. “Keep watching them, and report—unless I’m fighting. Then only bother me if it’s bad, and it’s something I can actually change. Actually, tell anyone in the League under those conditions.”
The alert flashed. [Understood.]
I needed to encourage Hal to use a handle in the League’s comm system. Having him interact with me through the alert system didn’t make a lot of sense.
Taking my eyes off transparent letters in my helmet’s HUD, I started paying attention to everything around me again.
Amy nodded toward my hands, a gesture made a little stranger by her black and blood red helmet. “What were you doing?”
I didn’t have to reply before Tara asked, “Who were you texting?”
While I’d never intended to keep that particular function of the suit’s gloves secret, it was a little disconcerting that Tara could guess that easily. Granted, it wasn’t a surprise.
Keeping my voice low, I said, “I probably shouldn’t say publicly.” With all the military supers, and the military powered armor of currently unknown abilities around, I couldn’t assume privacy even if I used the suit’s sonics to narrowcast my answer.
Tara nodded. Amy smirked. “Super secret Heroes’ League stuff?”
“Kinda. I really will tell you later—just, you know, not here.”
Knowing that the League had an alien battle simulation AI could only freak people out. In the interests of putting the minds of anyone who’d been listening in at rest, I put my hands on the bench, obviously not messing with my suit.
I could use the backup tongue control if I had to. It was a bit slow for typing though.
Meanwhile on the field, teams one and four were still talking. Sean seemed to be talking a lot, and even though I couldn’t see much inside Gordon’s hood, I could tell that he was frowning—plus he kept on clenching and unclenching his fist.
I checked the time. Team one had two minutes left before they had to fight. I wondered if they’d be done by then.
On the other side of the field, Izzy’s group was actually holding hands—not for long, but they were. As I glanced in their direction, they’d stood in a circle and put their hands into the middle, raising them up and giving a little shout.
My high school track team had done that sometimes. Those of us in long distance always made fun of it later.
Judging by Izzy’s blank expression, she’d have fit right in with the distance runners. Someone on that team must have loved high school sports though. You don’t come up with something like that spontaneously.
If you do, there’s something wrong with you.
I felt myself grinning, and wondering what Haley or Daniel would make of it. They’d both know more about who was enjoying it and who wasn’t.
“Hey.” A voice came from behind me, making me jump. My armor scraped the stone bench beneath me as I turned, finding a black cloak standing in the front of the general students’ section. Darkness obscured the inside of the cloak, obscuring the face that had to be inside it.
Chicago’s criminals must have found this guy terrifying. Dark Cloak scared me more during the day than he did at night.
All the same, the suit’s sonar created a workable picture of Adam’s face within the hood, along with other things his cloak hid—a gun in its shoulder holster, and internal pockets holding devices I didn’t recognize. I considered mentioning the weakness of his illusion, but didn’t, guessing that this wasn’t the place for it.
He gave a gentle grin, saying, “Thought I’d wish you luck and let you know I was rooting for you.”
“Thanks, I’ve got to admit I’m still a little surprised. If anybody, I’d expect you’d be rooting for uh… Moonglider and the Power’s team.”
He laughed. “Because I met you at the club? I didn’t go because I liked those guys. I’d heard you were coming, and I wanted to apologize for how things went the first time we met. Now I’m going to go back to my seat. Kick some ass for me.”
“Sure,”I said, watching as he walked down the row and turned to walk up the stands.
Several people down the bench from me, Rod leaned forward so I could see him past Samita, Amy and Tara. “There’s something about that guy that rubs me the wrong way.”
Rod wore a black mask along with his black trench coat, blond hair standing out against the darkness of his clothes.
Rod sniffed the air. “I can’t say for sure in this form, but I’d say he’s allied with the Unseelie Court.”
Amy turned to eye him through her helmet. “I don’t know your magical creatures. Which ones are they?”
Samita leaned forward, answering for him. “The fairies that don’t like humans.”
Amy turned her helmet toward mine. “Are you thinking what I’m thinking?”
As connections I didn’t particularly like crystalized in my mind, I said, “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”