15

“I hate stakeouts.”

“We know Cinder, stop complaining.”

“I’m cold.”

“We’re all cold.”

“Koi and Shatter don’t get cold, and you’re wearing like four petticoats.”

“And you’re wearing an insulated suit suitable for getting lit on fire, It should be more effective at keeping you warm than my petticoats.”

“I’ve been up here six hours, I’m tired.”

“Oh, stop complaining and go back inside with Shatter. I’ll keep watch for a while.”

“Really?”

“Yes, your chattering is mildly aggravating.”

“Fine I’m out.”

The target was a kind of crappy three story apartment complex. Inside was a team of four super villains, who were up until recently Hercules’ employers. Until he disappeared that is, now they were the only real lead one Hercules’ whereabouts. Whoever he was currently working for was very good at keeping a low profile. Gaslight, Koi, Shatter, and Cinder had been on watch the boring building duty for the last six hours with no change. Koi and Shatter were on the opposite side of the apartment, on top of their own building. They also had a room to rest in, the room Gaslight had just sent Cinder to. This left Gaslight alone with the villains between her and her allies, she would be worried if her territory wasn’t two meters above her head and had been building for six hours. About five minutes after Cinder left Gaslight heard steps on the fire escape.

“I really am fine on my own.”

“You sure about that little girly?”

“Quite so, you know someone might take the wrong impression about a man approaching an unattended little girl at night. At least have the decency to introduce yourself.”

“No need to be polite to heroes little girly, you’r going to have to come with me.”

The man didn’t seem to notice the already dim light fading way, as Gaslight slowly moved her territory to surround them, it was quite large by now. She stood up from her perch and turned to face the man, hands crossed over the pommel of her parasol with the tip on the ground.

“I’m afraid I can’t do that Sir, you see if you’re attacking me then your allies must be attacking mine. That simply won’t do, I can’t allow myself to be used as a hostage against them.”

“No need to use you as a hostage, they’ll be caught soon enough. We recognized that Koi bitch, and we have a way to shut her down.”

“Are you allies fireproof?”

As she spoke an explosion rocked the quiet night. The windows in the apartment Cinder should be in got blown out.

“Because mine are.”

“So are mine.”

His hands shifted not much, but his finger got longer and his nails became claws. Gaslight responded by having twelve, thirty centimeter, double sided, titanium, diamond edged, razorblades float up out of her umbrella. The super villain visibly swallowed.

“If your allies are fireproof I don’t have time to be gentle, I’m just going to have to cut you up a bit. How did you expect this to end anyways. Don’t you know the only time the heroes will send out a little girl is when we can do something totally insane. It’s like one of those rules you have to look out for, or something.” The blades flexed and started vibrating in such a way that they created a hum. “So here you are alone, on the roof of a building with a little girl, tell me how many horror movies start this way.” She started warping space, making the source of her voice indistinct, and make herself look smaller. She really started ramping up the fear. “Now tell me the powers of your allies, or I’ll have to start cutting.”

The man tried to escape, fear flooding his system. He could move, but Gaslight warped the space around him, so he didn’t go anywhere. He then disappeared, but Gaslight sent a razor were his leg had been and there was a howl of pan, and a line of blood on the razor. He became  visible again.

“Well that explains how you got out of the building without us knowing, so what can your allies do?”

He had started crying, and Gaslight could smell the faint hint of piss. “One’s a brick, another can slow time, the third can make sticky ropes of light.”

“Yes, that would be enough to hold down my team.”

“Please, let me go, I’ll do anything.”

“I know you will, now answer a couple more questions. How did you know we were here, and did you contact anyone?”

“I could hear you, and we contacted Hercules’ new employer.”

“Who hired him?”

“Please no.”

“WHO HIRED HIM SCUM.”

“Prysm, Prysim hir-” The man fell limp, he didn’t fall to the ground, there was too much intervening space. So he kind of hung there falling in slow motion.

“Oops, that’s enough of that.” There was a thing behind the man, Gaslight hadn’t seen it arrive and could still barley make it out. In the dark she could see it’s edges, but not make out any detail. The voice was feminine and surprisingly motherly. 

“I don’t suppose you’re a hero come to help out?”

“Fraid not honey.”

“Villain then, that’s some kind of stealth tech, making that power armor. Most likely you’re Prysim.”

“Got it in one, how do you respond.”

Gaslight canceled her territory, blades falling to the ground, and the ambient light returning to normal. She let her umbrella fall to the ground as well and crossed her wrists in front of her and held them up.

“I surrender.”

“You had this guy pissing himself and you just surrender?”

“As a youth hero I’m to avoid conflict with ultra class threats at all costs, but since my team might be captured I can’t just run. Also I couldn’t get away if I tried. Since you are unlikely to attack someone who has surrendered this is my best option. I surrender.”

“That’s annoyingly logical of you, but you got one thing wrong.”

“May I inquire as to what?”

“I’m not a hero here to help, I’m a villain here to help.”

“Why?”

“You’re a smart girl Foy, you’ll figure it out soon enough. Follow me.”

Prysim turned started floating away, and went down the fire escape. Gaslight realized that was a little odd, she should have been able to go over the edge just fine. But then Gaslight wouldn’t have been able to follow her. She was totally screwed, she knew the team they were watching was out of their weight class, but they were only on support. If only more of them had come for her. She tried to remember what she knew about Prysim, insane, did things big, petty, not likely to involve civilians, and not a killer. Of course she couldn’t remember any reports of Prysim kidnapping anyone either, so something was up. Why, why would she be here to help, it didn’t make sense.

“My I ask what you have planned for me?”

“Nothing anymore, I just thought you might like to watch what happens next.”

“You had something planed for me?”

“I planed on helping you, but you clearly didn’t need it.”

“What happens next?”

“I help your team.”

“Why?”

“Because that’s how this hand was dealt. You’ll see what I’m talking about.”

“How is Ms.Yamada’s well being?”

“Who?”

“The medical intern Hercules kidnapped.”

“Oh her, terrified out of her mind, but otherwise fine.”

“What would it take to have her retuned unharmed?”

“Nothing.”

“Are you sure we can’t negotiate.”

“You misunderstand me, when I’m done with her I will return her unharmed. There is nothing you need to do to assure that outcome.”

“Why did you take her then?”

“Because I need an extra pair of hands to keep a girl alive.”

“Who are you trying to keep alive?”

“An unfortunate girl who got in over her head and needs a way out.”

“You sound almost noble.”

“Not everything I do is evil, I just do evil stuff in large quantities to make up for any good I might do. Besides I was in it for the money, now I need a new goal in life.”

“I can’t tell if you’re trying to make me sympathize with you or not.”

“I do bad things and will admit to it freely, that makes me more honest than you in a way. I find it more interesting to keep a policy of honesty.”

“How are you more honest than me?”

“I put that guy in the hospital for a week, you gave him PTSD for the rest of his life. Somehow you’re one of the good guys.”

“Don’t you dare give me the not so different speech, or the you’re better than me speech.”

“I won’t, both of those are complete bullshit. I remember the first time I heard the not so different speech, I castrated him and gave him a boob job. Good times.”

“Thats sick.”

“And that reaction is why both of those speeches are bullshit.”

“You’re suppose to be insane, but you seed disturbingly rational.”

“It’s the big brain psychosis really, we tend to act in very sane ways, we just do crazy things. Owl is the least crazy of the big brains, followed by Uriel.”

“How is that crazy fairy less insane than Uriel?”

“Simple she isn’t a crazy fairy, keep that to yourself, she still thinks I buy her act.”

“Is she a real fairy then?”

“Good question, I don’t know. I just know she’s isn’t crazy. Now shush or they’ll hear us arrive, I want to be all dramatic.”

Prysim was right, they had crossed between the intervening space between the building they had been on, and the one the rest of the team was on. In the time Gaslight had sent six emergency calls, none of them had been responded to. She suspected that Prysim was blocking the signal. They had just about reached the roof via the fire escape, they probably hadn’t been detected. Prysim made no sound as she moved and she was small, light, and quiet. Suddenly Prysim moved far faster than she had demonstrated so far and flew up onto the roof. There were two sharp cracks then silence. Gaslight raced to see what had happened.

Shatter, Koi, and Cinder were all wrapped in glowing strands that were connected to what looked like a glowing spiders web. On the ground unconscious were two of the three villains, the third one was still conscious and connected to the glowing web. Prysim was standing directly in front of Shatter. Koi was the first one to speak.

“You missed one.”

“I know, but he doesn’t have problematic powers, so he can wait.”

“You call these webs non-problematic.”

“Even if I couldn’t cut through them or power out, I can always just shoot him with a missile.”

The man seemed to pale at the thought. “Why are you doing this, we called you in good faith.”

“I know, the problem is, for you at least is that my son is with these heroes.”

“Mother is that you?”

“Yeah Shatter it’s me. Do you like my new armor, I just made it.”

“It’s very nice. Why are you here?”

“I’m about to do something rather time intensive, so I figured I’d come check on you. This provided a good opportunity.”

“Oh, something evil?”

“Actually no, the end result might just be downright altruistic.”

“Really?”

“I keep telling you, I’m not evil, just crazy.”

“What are you going to do?”

“I’m going to help one person by the time I’m done, one person will be better off, and one person, well I don’t know yet. But I don’t think she’ll regret it.”

“That’s very cryptic mom.”

“I know, I’ll explain later. More important things first.”

“What’s more important?”

“You are, how’s school going for you, have you made any friends, do you like your team?”

“Mom.”

“What?”

“You’re acting like Mis. Marsh. You know Alecia asked me to call her sister right?”

“Sorry, but I’ve been worried about you, and you should do what she says. I usually do, that girl is crazy.”

“Stop saying bad things, it’s sad.”

“Fine, well I really should get going. I love you.”

“I love you too mom, can you do something about the webbing before you go?”

In response Prysim moved. Punching the final villain on the roof in the gut. He was out before he hit the ground, the webbing faded with him. Prysim teleported out, no smoke, no sound, nothing.

“Your mom is Prysim?”

0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33

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3 comments

  1. hi,
    thanks for the new chapter

    huh, just noticed: i like this more than i liked raising Angels (and i liked raising angels)

      1. Makes sense, I started RA in March and it was my first major piece of writing. Defection was written several months later. I’m better than I was.

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