Even three nights later, I still found myself thinking about the conversation. I’d talked about it with Haley, (and for that matter Daniel, Cassie, and Vaughn) and we all agreed it wasn’t likely that Courtney would be able to recreate the power impregnator on her own.
Despite what you might see in the movies, being a chemistry major doesn’t automatically qualify you to construct a device that activates powers hidden in a person’s DNA.
I mean, honestly, it would have been a lot of work for me to construct one, and I had Grandpa’s documentation.
I knew that, and yet on Thursday night I lay in my bunk, staring at the ceiling, and wondering what she planned to do with her powers anyway.
She could already pass for a model. What else did she want?
I turned my head. On my desk, the numbers of my alarm clock glowed red, showing the time—1:34 am. I had three classes on Friday. I didn’t have anything due, but I still wanted to be awake.
I settled in, closing my eyes, and trying to think of something that would put me to sleep.
On the bunk below, Jeremy breathed steadily, probably sleeping. Over the last few days, he’d seemed okay, and I’d decided I could deal with him for a year.
I just hoped I could keep my identity as the Rocket secret.
Naturally, it was as I thought about that that my League phone began to vibrate. I’d put it in a pocket in my pajamas, hoping it would wake me up.
I clicked on it, and the screen glowed.
Marcus had sent a yellow. I checked the map. He was downtown, and moving.
Was he alone? If he’d gone on patrol, he was supposed to take someone else along.
I dropped to the floor as quietly as I could, pulled on the stealth suit—the innermost layer could pass as long underwear or exercise clothes, and pulled jeans and t-shirt over it.
Cassie, Vaughn, and I had worked out a plan for situations like this, and tonight we’d get to put it into practice. I couldn’t realistically keep the Rocket suit in my room, and I couldn’t realistically head back to Grandpa’s house to get it on short notice.
Once I got my shoes on, I stepped out of the room, closed the door quietly, and walked as quickly as I could down the hall. After I stepped out of the dormitory, I ran for the school parking garage.
I’d parked the van on the second floor, so by the time made it up the stairs, I found I wasn’t the first person there. I opened the door and stepped inside to find Cassie was already in the back of the van, grabbing things.
“There you are. Now all we’re missing is—”
Vaughn opened the passenger side door, and stepped in.
I turned on the van, and drove out. Even at this time of night there were still a few people using the parking garage, but I’d taken the precaution of tinting the windows so they couldn’t easily see inside.
I’d also added a few other details that made our lives a little easier, but the main point of the van was more to be a mobile closet than a recognizable League fighting vehicle.
“Does anyone know what’s going on?” I tapped a few buttons on the dashboard, and a screen showed Marcus’ location downtown.
“No,” Vaughn said.
From the back, Cassie said, “Marcus caught somebody breaking into First of Michigan Bank downtown, and now he’s chasing the guy.”
“I didn’t think we were doing patrols because of school starting,” I said.
“We’re not,” Cassie said. “Marcus went out for the fun of it after work.”
“Anyway, Marcus is still in high school so he doesn’t start for another week,” Vaughn said. Except for the mask, he’d changed into his costume.
“I know,” I said, “but we were using the buddy system for patrols to avoid this kind of stuff.”
I pulled the van to the side of the road. We were downtown. If Marcus and whoever he was chasing kept on moving in the same direction, they’d go past us soon.
Getting up and walking into the back, I threw off my t-shirt and jeans, and pulled on the stealth suit’s upper layers—pants, jacket, and helmet. Then I grabbed my utility belt, rocketpack, and the guitar.
Meanwhile, Vaughn and Cassie had stepped out of the van.
I followed them out, hearing the sound of gunshots, and brief roaring noises that reminded me of jet engines.
I’d parked in an alley. We were near the city’s arena next to a street of old, brick buildings that had once been factories, but were now restaurants and shops.
The roaring noises grew louder, and I looked up in time to see seven people jump the distance between the two buildings on either side of the alley. Glowing lines of fire shot out of the bottoms of their boots.