Two weeks later, Joe stood in the McAllister’s living room. Chuck sat on the couch. He wore a baggy flannel shirt.
“You can’t see it,” Chuck said, “but I got shot twice. Once in the gut. The other grazed me. I had my doc sew me up.”
“How did it happen?”
Continue reading 1953: Part 4
The butler opened the door and showed the two of them into Hardwick House.
Stepping into the small alcove next to the door, Joe noticed that Giles had had the place redecorated since he’d last been in. All the old Victorian furniture with its intricate carvings had been replaced by modern furniture with straight lines, uncarved wood, and basic shapes. Joe wondered where all the old stuff had gone, but did not plan to ask. It really didn’t matter.
Turning to the butler, he said, “Mitchell, If you don’t mind, we’ll find our own way in. They’re at the top of the pyramid, right?”
Continue reading 1953: Part 3
He woke knowing that he had just drowned in the North Sea in full armor. He couldn’t pull it off before sinking. Half naked in the darkness, he had kicked and pushed. But had he really been swimming upwards? He couldn’t tell.
Gasping for air, his mouth filled with water.
Bolting awake, at first not realizing where he was, he took a breath.
Continue reading 1953: Part 2
What follows is the beginning of a short arc about the founding of the original Heroes League. We’ll get to start off meeting characters that are all dead by the time the present day storyline starts — Nick’s grandparents (Joe and Romy), Red Lightning, and the original Night Wolf in his day job as the manager of a pizzeria.
Sorry it didn’t get up earlier. Starting a new story is hard — all new characters and a new plot, not to mention my tendency to start reading about the 1950’s and then get distracted by the research.
Continue reading 1953: Part 1
I shut down HQ for the night around 11:23 pm, knowing even as I did it that my parents weren’t going to be happy.
We had arrived back at 10:47 pm. In theory, I suppose, I could have been home on time if I’d skipped showering and let everyone else turn things off. Unfortunately just taking off the armor and putting it away took 10 minutes. Short of asking Jaclyn to carry me back to the house at full speed, I couldn’t see any way to be home on time.
Continue reading In the Public Eye: Part 60
Inside the police department looked like most institutional buildings — beige walls, tile floor, cubicles — but with the obvious addition of men and women in blue carrying guns.
We ended up standing inside a conference room. “We” in this case meant new and old Heroes League members, the Midwest Defenders, the FBI representatives, PsyKick, Larry, and a few police.
It was a big conference room — two, actually. They’d taken out the divider between two rooms as we came in.
The tables had been pushed to the wall and the sleeping bodies placed in the middle of the room. All the rest of us stood around the edges while Daniel, his dad, the Fed with the psychic helmet, and PsyKick deep probed their minds.
Continue reading In the Public Eye: Part 59
“No. There’s no way I’m doing that,” I said.
“That was a joke. I wasn’t suggesting you let Mindstryke take over, but you need to listen to the guy. No one thinks about it when they start, but managing your image is a major piece of the job.”
Guardian pulled a couple pieces of pepperoni pizza onto a plate.
Flick leaned in toward the table and smiled briefly. “He’s right. Some of you have heard about what happened when I joined the Defenders. I think the most important thing I’ve learned in the past two years is how to handle myself in public.”
Continue reading In the Public Eye: Part 58
“Is there some way I could avoid being on TV?” I said.
“Are you nervous?” Haley asked. “Your grandfather was on TV all the time.”
“Was he your grandfather?” Flick said. “I wondered about the connection. I remember seeing him on TV as a little kid. He always seemed so calm.”
Flick didn’t seem all that much older than we were. I would have guessed mid to late twenties. At best she could have seen him at the tail end of his career unless she’d seen some old news footage. During a history class, I once saw him in a World War II era newsreel.
Continue reading In the Public Eye: Part 57
The house only blew up a little bit — at least by comparison to an atomic bomb, for example. It didn’t have a mushroom cloud, just gouts of flame pouring out the kitchen windows and doors. To judge from what it looked like afterwards, it must have blasted out a couple pieces of wall too, but I was too distracted by the flames and smoke to notice.
We had already gotten out when it happened. The explosion destroyed the kitchen, part of the dining room, and started most of the back of the house burning. Even through my armor I could feel the heat a little.
I hit the ground when it blew like everyone else, realizing belatedly that I probably didn’t have to.
Continue reading In the Public Eye: Part 56
The Hangman who had caught Marcus swung the rope end of the noose toward Water. He froze as it touched his neck, the rope tying itself into a second noose. However quickly he thought he could change, Water ended up in human form.
They’d taken us all out.
Well, all of us except me, and I’d decided to pretend otherwise. With any luck I’d get some useful information and maybe get the chance to surprise them.
Continue reading In the Public Eye: Part 55