A few people laughed, but Amy stopped moving, expression blank, finally managing to say, “That’s the plan.”
Samita stood up and walked up to the front. Dressed in a green blouse and khaki pants, it was one of the few times I’d seen her out of costume. With black hair and brown skin, she looked like she might be from southeast Asia, and her parents were. She’d been born in the US.
She stood in front of the group as Amy moved to the side and stood next to the wall. Samita’s eyes darted from one of us to another. In combination with the straightness of her stance, she gave the impression of a highly motivated student hoping for an “A.” Continue reading Everybody’s Got One: Part 6
I clicked on the email.
All it said was “You know what to do,” and underneath that sentence there was a link to a Dropbox folder. I hesitated for a moment and then clicked on it. It opened to a web page that listed only one file in folder. It was called “Exposure.mpv.”
I’d heard of the video format. It only ran on the associated player and only worked once. No one knew who had designed it. The Double V forums were certain it was a known tech genius, but couldn’t agree on who.
Daniel’s bed creaked, and I heard him walk up behind me as I sat at the desk. “Maybe we should get Izzy. It’s only going to play once, and she’s got a great memory for sounds.” Continue reading Faerieland: Part 48
Touching my palms with the fingers of my gloves, I typed back, “Named Artaxus. He’s a dragon. Don’t look in eyes. Mind control.”
Rachel texted back, “Fuck.”
Amy and the dragon were still talking. I typed, “Need to get outside. Bad to fight here. Because fire.”
Kind of have a plan, Daniel thought at me. Amy’s about to suggest we talk outside. If he doesn’t buy it, we run.
That’s a bad plan, I thought back. Continue reading Faerieland: Part 36
Travis’ mouth twitched. “I’m pleading the fifth on that, but yeah, I like the idea. That might get us what we need. Do we have any other way we can find out more? Like his ex-girlfriend… Jaclyn, do you know where she is? Or what about Samita and Rod? Can’t you, I don’t know, summon up something?”
Samita’s mouth turned into a flat line. “Summoning is very dangerous. One wrong move and you could release whatever you summon into the world. Worse, depending on what you summon, you could put your life or even your soul in danger.”
Jaclyn started tapping furiously into her phone.
Vaughn looked up from whatever he’d been checking on his phone. “Hey, it doesn’t have to be something dangerous does it? I read one of those Dresden Files books, and in there the guy summons up fairies and feeds them pizza. Can’t you do something easy like that?” Continue reading Faerieland: Part 3
Jaclyn shook her head, and pulled her phone out of her pocket. “That’s not what interests me. What I want to know is why he’s even bothering? What do we know about him?”
“Well,” I paused, mouth partway open, wondering if I should even say it. “I’m pretty sure he’s a client of my dad’s. My dad had a client who was a superhero, and who needed therapy after quitting. Adam’s girlfriend got killed by the mob, and he went on some kind of rampage, killing anyone remotely associated, I guess. Agent Lim got him into therapy. I don’t know why he actually stopped killing and went through with it, but he did say nice things about my dad when I talked to him once.”
Fingers already tapping out something on the screen of her phone, Jaclyn said, “His codename?”
She stopped and looked up at me. “That guy? I heard about him.” Then she started tapping away again. Continue reading Faerieland: Part 2
Rachel raised an eyebrow. “What’s going on now?”
Tara crossed her arms. “I noticed you weren’t listening earlier. Is it the same thing we talked about before?”
Rachel took a breath and sighed. Jaclyn pulled her feet out of the holes she’d created when she landed, and shook her head. “I knew that was going to come back to haunt us.”
Remembering how little I could hear during the fight, I said, “I told Hal to update you if he had something that needed action on our part. So far it hasn’t, but I could tell him to update you anyway?”
“Rocket,” Rachel said, looking me directly in the eyes, “this is something that we all need to be kept updated on.” Continue reading Demo: Part 16
In my peripheral vision—which included almost everything behind me—Samita opened up a box and threw the dirt inside it into the air. It hung in the air like a cloud, and then in one burst dispersed, spreading across the entire field.
That’s when things got weird.
All the grass on our side of the field drooped, and spread across the ground, covering the dirt in green. As it did, the green became darker, and shinier—like glass, or ice.
Jaclyn and Meteor both fell. For the little that it’s worth, Jaclyn did better, turning her initial stumble into a jump that threw her into the air. She landed only ten feet past our flag, but it didn’t matter. She was still traveling at two hundred miles per hour. Along with Meteor, she slid past our flag pole and toward the obstacle course—depending on the angle. The ground wasn’t level. It wasn’t impossible that they’d slide into the parked cars off to the side of the course. Continue reading Demo: Part 15
I couldn’t argue with her there. Jaclyn alone had a chance of taking out our entire team in a straight fight. Add in another speedster plus Travis, Rachel, and Mist for good measure…
We were toast.
That sounds defeatist, but it wasn’t. The funny thing is that what gave us a chance of winning was the fact that we were playing a game. Jaclyn might be able to kill any of us with a blow in real life, but here she had to decide how much she was willing to hurt us to win.
In front of me, Tara met each of our eyes in turn. “I think I know what they’re going to to do. Rocket, you’ve got a way to stop Ghost, right?” Continue reading Demo: Part 14
Amy closed her eyes, said a few words and poked her arm. As she pulled the pin out, her face visibly paled–even in the light of a streetlight.
Haley frowned. “Are you okay?”
Amy nodded slowly. “It’s not a difficult spell, but I don’t have as much power to work with without transforming. Could all of you hold out your arms?”
Camille extended her arm halfway to Amy, asking, “What are you–”
Amy grabbed Camille’s forearm, and poked her with the pin. “This.” Continue reading Threat Analysis: Part 5
We stayed together. Even if Izzy and Jaclyn could have been there instantaneously, it was just safer.
The park was largely empty–not completely because there were stragglers and groups that were still talking. There were also a few police officers.
Vaughn sat on the grass, his face lit by his phone’s screen. As we came closer, he turned off his phone and stared at us.
“How did you do that? We were talking and now you’re all over–”
He stopped. “Something bad just happened. I wasn’t talking to you, was I?”
Jaclyn glanced around the park. “Daniel? Izzy?”
Daniel shook his head. “Give me a second. I’m trying something.” Continue reading Threat Analysis: Part 4