I woke up the next day in my own house and my own bed. I’d been living there since my junior year of college by that point so it felt normal to think of it as mine as opposed to my grandparents. I’d even decorated to a degree.
When we’d cleaned up the base below, we’d found a sign that hung in front of Grandpa’s business. It said, “Joe Vander Sloot, Consulting Engineer.” His name was on the first line and title on the second, both in gold letters against a black background. Knowing the Rocket suit’s colors, I’d wondered if it were a subtle nod to his alter ego, but it might be colors that fit the look of the business.
It might have been both, but it was five years late to ask him. Continue reading Never Go Home: Part 1
Emmy looked from me over to Tara, “Do either of you know what happened to Victor?”
Eyeing Tara, I hoped she took the hint. Or to put it another way, I hoped she chose to take the hint. She almost certainly got it and if she failed to notice, it could only be that she had a bigger problem on her mind.
For a moment, I thought I saw the hint of a smile as Tara responded, most likely guessing at my thoughts. “No one knows. He teleported away. If I had to bet, he’s with the Nine and he’s telling them how he can turn the True into an unstoppable army under their command if they’ll just give him the money.” Continue reading Loose Ends: Part 8
Talking about it too widely could literally lead to the end of the world, so I felt like I had a decent excuse.
Still showing a hint of a smile, Lim stood up and tapped the globe on the table again. It stopped glowing. “If that’s it, I should let you go. I’m assuming that you got everything?”
I shrugged, “Everything I intended to take. Do you think anyone’s going to mind if I grab pens, t-shirts, or anything else from the swag closet?” Continue reading Loose Ends: Part 6
I raised an eyebrow. “How?”
Isaac leaned forward, glancing over at Tara and then at me. “I have contacts all over the superhero community and it shouldn’t surprise either of you that Nick’s not the only one I’ve got trying to infiltrate the Nine. One of them let me know that the Nine were after me about the time that Dr. Hansen tried to mind control you. Continue reading Loose Ends: Part 5
Tara wore the katana she’d carried the night before. I wondered what it did if anything. I hadn’t made it, after all.
It could be that it was just a sword that she’d chosen to use when she adopted her late father’s superhero identity—Ronin. Given that they were masterless warriors and he’d left the True, I could see why the name might have resonated with him and her too. Continue reading Loose Ends: Part 4
Then Daniel frowned. I can’t say that there aren’t potential problems, though. Memories associated with verbal commands using Dr. Hansen’s tie pin or other people’s voices last longer than normal memories and a decent telepath could use them as foundations for altering how someone thinks—which is why the Dominators are as effective as they are.
Have someone with voice powers put in a few basic commands, let a telepath set up a framework that connects the commands together, and maybe have a wizard set up a way to revert to that mental state if a telepath removes it and you’ve got something I can’t remove and maybe something I can’t detect. Continue reading Loose Ends: Part 3
Of course, maybe I’d get lucky and a killbot would work. The way the night had been going, that was nothing to count on. Also, given that purple glowing tinge to Victor’s skin, I had no idea what he could do, but if he existed out of phase, the only way I’d be able to touch him is by using what the Cosmic Ghost’s taught me to power up the killbot somehow. Continue reading Mere Anarchy: Part 22
It should have had a backup controller in the mouthguard. They’d taken the rest of Grandpa’s design. Sure, the mouthguard took a little bit to learn to use, didn’t give you the precision of hand controls, made the helmet design more complicated, and theoretically, all you needed to control the suit’s major functions was one hand, but what if you needed both hands for something complicated while flying?
Some things required triple redundancy and controlling what direction you were flying was one of them. Continue reading Mere Anarchy: Part 13
Two bullets hit me before I began my first mid-air Rocket suit integration. The first glanced off my arm, not doing much. The second would have gone through my heart if my armor hadn’t been in the way. Three years ago, it would have killed me. In the meantime, I’d replaced the original material with a substance that had origins in alien tech and repaired itself.
Judging from the strength of the hit and the damage the HUD reported, I decided that the bullet had to be armor-piercing.
It didn’t go through my armor, pushing me backward, ricocheting downward toward the forest. Continue reading Mere Anarchy: Part 7
“Whoa,” I held my hands up in the air, raising them slowly, palms forward. “There’s something that you’ll want to know before firing on us. You’re currently being watched by more than 100,000 people on multiple different streaming services—”
Kayla interrupted me. “One million people.”
A quick look at the bottom of my HUD confirmed she was right. I continued, watching them as I talked. “—actually one million people. Anyway, you don’t want to attack us in front of that many people, do you? I’m pretty sure security guards aren’t allowed to use deadly force unless we’re attacking you or someone else.” Continue reading Mere Anarchy: Part 6