As it turned out, I was right to worry because the situation evolved before my eyes—assuming that watching through a window in my HUD counts.
The True stood in front of Daniel’s house on the sidewalk and pointed their their rifles toward it—which was a good tactic. No one inside could prevent them from shooting up the house.
Except then, they didn’t.
The Cabal soldier, yet another wearing a black costume with a nine on his chest, differed from most of them in that he was unshaven and had a mullet.
Mullet held up his hand and said something, walking toward the front door—which still wasn’t a bad tactic in that he could kill anyone inside and they could take care of anyone who tried to sneak out the back.
Two of them started walking toward the side of the house, probably with that exact idea in mind.
And then the world turned topsy-turvy—not literally, figuratively.
The bots I had stationed in the back saw a figure step out of the sliding glass door in the back and shoot upward quickly enough that to the eyes of a normal person he’d have simply appeared floating above the front of the house.
I say he because it wasn’t Daniel’s mom. Daniel’s grandfather had appeared on the scene—in costume as the Mentalist.
It was the 1980s costume. Blue all over, it had his symbol in white on his chest, a complex design that worked “M” for Mentalist and the Star of David into one symbol. He’d wanted the Nazis to know he was Jewish.
It didn’t fit as well these days. Tight around his belly and loose around his chest and limbs, it hadn’t been redesigned for his current physique. Age comes for us all eventually and it’s wiser to stay out of fights when you’re past your prime.
I couldn’t look away from his costume. Even though Daniel shared his grandfather’s talent for using prescience to deflect or avoid attacks, Daniel still wore an armored costume. I knew for a fact that the Mentalist’s costume wasn’t armored at all. My grandfather had told me so with a certain amount of old frustration at the edges of his voice.
If I could have gone faster, I would have.
All I could do was watch in horror as the Cabal soldier jumped at Daniel’s grandfather at what my implant calculated as more than 1000 miles per hour.
Even with prescience and telekinesis, Daniel didn’t have the strength to stop that. I expected to see blood as Mullet punched him and Daniel’s grandfather all but exploded.
I was half-right. I did see blood. It was the Cabal soldier’s.
Three-quarters of the way to Daniel’s grandfather, Mullet stopped in the air and started to become smaller. It wasn’t the kind of smaller that you’d see in a movie version of Alice in Wonderland. It was kind you saw in a car compactor.
Mullet played the role of the car.
Instead of steel plates, the Cabal soldier was crushed by telekinetic force. It was also messy since cars didn’t contain blood. I’m not going to give a full description but for a hint, be aware that I flashed back to the time I saw a woman’s head explode on the planet Hideaway.
For the second time that day, I saw the True respond to something that didn’t fit into their calculations. This time they did a little better.
They aimed their rifles at The Mentalist, correctly recognizing that if they got even one shot to the right place, he’d be down.
They didn’t get that shot in.
Faster than a speeding bullet, a blur passed all four of them, knocking each one to the ground while bending or breaking their rifles along with their bones.
By then I was close enough to see a second blur join the first. The second one was purple. Jaclyn stopped in front of the first blur, her grandfather, C.
He wore one of my suits as well as some special sunglasses my grandfather had designed for him, getting around C’s blindness. As I landed, I noted that C wore red with a symbol on the chest. It wasn’t his traditional color or his symbol—which was likely intentional. So far as the world knew, C was retired and the Flash was owned by a very litigious corporation.
I walked up to hear Jaclyn say, “I thought you and the rest of our board were keeping out of our fights because getting involved might kill us all.”
In his deep voice, C said, “There are exceptions. This is one of them.”
He let out a breath, “I know what happened today. If we could have helped without ruining everything, we would have.”
Jaclyn shook her head, “I’m not criticizing you. We were told why you’re doing it. I’m sure you did everything you could.”
C put his hand on her shoulder, “Not enough. Especially on a day like this, I wonder if we could have done more. I never wanted this for any of you.”
He hugged his granddaughter and looked over at me, “Tell Night Cat that I’m sorry.”
I said, “I will.”
Daniel’s grandfather landed next to me, “Tell her for me as well. May his memory be a blessing, but I wish Night Wolf could be more than a memory. I wish we had better choices to offer all of you.”
As he talked, I felt my connection to Daniel strengthen and then he landed next to us along with Izzy.
I felt his shock and a flicker of hope as he asked, “Are you back to normal? Were you faking it?”