In the Public Eye: Part 52

The beam struck the floor in front of us and the carpet caught fire. Water slid forward and became a puddle, smothering it. Then he reverted into human-shaped water.

“Come any closer to me or my family and I’ll blast you,” Bouman said.

“Oh come on,” Daniel said. “This has nothing to do with your family. That has got to be one of the stupidest rationalizations I have ever heard. You’ve been manipulating people for ages and now you’re afraid to face the music. That’s the only reason you’re holding the gun.”
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In the Public Eye: Part 51

Walking through the house seemed to take forever. We had to go down three stories before we reached the first floor.

We couldn’t see out of the windows because the smoke reached higher than our heads. Wisps of it came through the edges of the windowsill and the bottom of the front door.
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In the Public Eye: Part 50

We descended toward the house. Daniel and his father floated down with no visible means of support as if they were riding an invisible elevator. The wind held Vaughn in the air, blowing his hair wildly as he rode it down. Marcus circled down, gliding like a hawk. I followed Daniel, my jetpack set to give slightly less force than it would take to hover.

OK, Daniel’s dad thought at us, Bouman’s in the basement with his wife and kids. He’s armed with some kind of gun, probably equipment confiscated by the police. I have no idea what it can do so be careful and keep the violence to a minimum. If we can manage to capture Bouman without beating him unconscious in front of his family, I’ll be happy.

A burst of thought from Daniel: We’re going to be attacked shortly… um… now.
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In the Public Eye: Part 49

“Marcus, too,” Daniel continued. “Really, they found each other. I’ve told them where we are.”

Moments later, they stepped out from behind the nearest house and into the light outside their garage. Marcus appeared almost like himself except for feathered wings. Also, though I hadn’t noticed it earlier, I realized that he wore a costume and had been all night. Gray like Travis and Haley’s, his costume flashed a rainbow of colors when he moved. On the left side of his chest were the words, “The Shift.”

Vaughn limped next to him, his left arm hanging in a way that seemed somehow off. Blood spattered the lower half of his face where he had no mask. A slit the width of a knife blade showed skin and dried blood on the right side of his neck. To judge from the amount of dried blood on his costume, it surprised me that any could be left inside him.
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In the Public Eye: Part 48

“Are you getting anything?” I asked Daniel.

We stood about twenty feet to the side of the main table where everyone else sat, quietly talking.

“Almost,” Daniel said. “I’ll pull you in when I’ve got it.”

The grownups hadn’t been gone for long.

My vision blurred. Superimposed upon the League HQ’s main room, I saw the lab with it’s collection of machines and spare Rocket suit parts. Larry (his helmet off) fiddled with the controls of one of Grandpa’s more advanced fabrication machines. Daniel’s dad and C, Jaclyn’s grandfather, faced each other next to the counter on the left side of the room.
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In the Public Eye: Part 47

Legion HQ felt full. Three of the four Elementals plus Future Knight, Red Bolt, and Tomahawk were sleeping on the floor. All of the new League (except Vaughn and Marcus) plus Jaclyn’s grandfather, Larry, and Mindstryke, Daniel’s dad.

Mindstryke had showed up just after we’d all sat down at the main table. He looked tired.

“I had to settle my dad down. He thought it was 1965 and the original League was still fighting Red Lightning. I didn’t know he still had one.” He held a ring in his hand. The gem flickered.
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In the Public Eye: Part 46

I stood.

Not far from where the others were stuck to the street, Daniel, Haley, and Marcus were fighting Water and doing about as well as they would fighting a puddle.

Haley stood in the middle of the road, directly in front of the elemental. Marcus stood just behind her, having shifted into a vaguely demonic shape complete with batwings and wide blades instead of hands. Daniel stood on the sidewalk.

Haley slashed the humanoid’s middle, leaving ripples, but no wound. She ducked a punch then flipped backward, allowing Daniel to take a shot.
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In the Public Eye: Part 45

Only as I passed over the house did I realize that we didn’t have much of a plan. I was going to attack Future Knight and they were going to do what to the water elemental guy?

Too late to stop now.

In the streetlights’ illumination, I could see Travis, Jaclyn, and Cassie standing in the street. All of them were up to their knees in white stuff that reminded me of shaving cream or possibly meringue.
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In the Public Eye: Part 44

My grandfather’s property (and that of all the neighbors on his side of the block) went up to the edge of Veterans Memorial Park. I followed the chain link fence that separated private property from city property.

I slowed down as I got closer to where I’d seen the shot. No point in running into somebody’s line of fire.

Three houses away from my grandfather’s house, I heard Daniel in my head.

Nick. Stop.

I stopped.
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In the Public Eye: Part 43

It took less than a second for him to fly under me, flip around to face me and grab my throat with both hands.

His face told me everything I needed to know about his intentions. Screaming incoherently at me, he squeezed the armor around my neck. It didn’t break, but I could feel it move under his fingers. Cords of muscle visible in his forearms, he strained his arms to put as much force into the squeeze as he could.

For that moment, my armor held.
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