Mindstryke of the Midwest Defenders (my best friend Daniel’s dad) had mixed feelings about the idea and he told me so over a video connection from the Midwest Defenders’ Chicago base.
“You never know what’s going on with a reporter. Do they have an axe to grind? Or just as bad, are they basically a stalker with a notepad?”
He shook his head. The Defenders had paid money to look good during video conferences. The window behind him looked out over Chicago’s skyline and Lake Michigan. It wasn’t really what was behind him, but you couldn’t tell the difference from here. Continue reading A Day in The Life: Part 1
Wind blew in the background, not loudly enough that I had any difficulty understanding his words, but loud enough that I knew it was there.
“It’s been a while since we last talked.” Daniel’s dad’s tenor voice came over the phone. “Ordinarily I wouldn’t have called you this early, but my wife assured me that you were up.”
Daniel’s mother wasn’t as strong a telepath as his father. Most of her abilities only worked on people who were asleep, but under the right conditions, there was no known limit to her range. If she said someone was awake, you could assume she was right. Continue reading Everybody’s Got One: Part 2
I had to admit he made sense, but I couldn’t say I liked it.
When push came to shove, I didn’t want Sean to go to jail for killing Ray. You could argue that Ray’s standard operating procedure was driving people past what they could emotionally handle, and then killing them while they were too tortured to think straight.
It didn’t take much to see that if your strategy was based on giving people an irrational need to kill you, it could come back to bite you someday. Sean just happened to be the biter. Continue reading Turning Eighteen: Part 7
“Why won’t I like it?”
Sitting up a little straighter in his chair, Mr. Cohen said, “I think we need to take a step back before we talk about that. I asked for your thoughts on what happened because I think you need to hear yourself say them.
“I’m a big believer in taking a look at the whole picture. Can our legal system take care of the problem? What about letting the superhuman community handle it? And is it worth it? In my experience, you can never ask, ‘Is it worth it?’ enough.” Continue reading Turning Eighteen: Part 6
Unsure of what to say next, I paused.
Daniel’s dad said, “Start where you think the beginning is.”
“Well, the real beginning’s back in December when we found Ray at Haley’s family Christmas party, but that would take too long, and you could say the next beginning is when Ray killed Sean’s dad at graduation, but I think the beginning that matters was when Sean told Rachel and I that he was going to kick Ray’s ass, and beat us to the cottage…” Continue reading Turning Eighteen: Part 5
We talked more after that, but not much worth repeating.
What can you say that tops, “I’m an alien on the run from my people who, by the way, commit genocide as a hobby, and might stop by any day now?”
Near the end of lunch, I got a text message from Daniel. It said, “Dad says come by any time.” Continue reading Turning Eighteen: Part 4
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