Brazier

Brazier walked through the Midway of Fantastik Fun Forall. It was the first week of summer vacation and the amusement park teamed with people. The promotion the park used coincided with Pride week, and Brazier volunteered immediately.

Brazier kept his private life private. At the same time, he managed to be a public figure for the LGBT community.

Several people took his picture as he walked by. More than one person approached and asked to pose with them for pictures. Brazier was more than willing to do this. He enjoyed interacting with the public.

“Figures he would be here,” a loud voice shouted. “Mister Flaming himself.”

Several people turned their attention to the voice. A tall, solid build man with a shaved head was attached to the voice. The bald man stood with a hip cocked. He held a tattoo covered arm with a limp wrist. He even batted his eyes lashes for effect.

“Give me a break,” the man said as he walked through the parting crowd. “You aren’t even a top list hero.”

Brazier snorted and smirked. “I choose to be my own person and not live up to other’s unreasonable expectations.”

“Whatever, queer,” the bald man said. “You got your ass handed to you by Widget. The dwarf that makes dumb-ass machines and robs banks.” He made a rude noise and dismissive gesture.

Brazier flushed and shifted his stance. “Widget got the best of me when I stepped in on his latest robbery attempt.” Brazier shook his head and stepped forward. “I trapped him under his own equipment by melting it. That means I got him in the end.”

“In the end,” the bald man laughed. “I bet you did, cupcake.”

Brazier’s lip twitched as he caught the double entendre he let slip.

A loud cheer went up in the distance. The crowd turned to look. Paragon lowered from the air amidst the throng of people near the autograph tables.

“That is a man’s man,” the bald headed man said, while tossing a thumb over his shoulder. “Ladies fawn over him. Paragon defeats top shelf villains. Plus, he dishes out beatings on a regular basis.”

“You forget that Paragon has a secret identity,” Brazier said. “No one really knows what he’s like out of uniform.”

“Shit,” the bald man said, dragging out the word. “I bet he has women throwing themselves at him.” The bald headed man put both hands on his hips. “Have you seen the way Silverwing behaves around him? I bet they bump uglies daily.” The bald man pulled both his fists back as he thrust his hips forward. He laughed and stuck out his tongue.

“That’s sexist, pervert,” a woman shouted from the crowd. “Just leave. There’s no room for bigotry like that anymore.”

Pointing at the woman, the bald man showed a greasy smile. “You sound like someone that needs a good one-night stand.” The bald man winked at the woman.

“What seems to be the problem over here, Brazier?” Paragon walked into the opening.

Another man pointed at the bald man. “This asshat is spouting off,” the man said.

“Be polite,” Paragon said, wagging a finger at the man. His rich baritone carried over the crowd. “We are entitled to free speech here. Even if it is mean and spiteful.”

“That’s right,” the bald man said. “I can say what I want about you fairies and there’s nothing you can do about it. Paragon is here to protect my rights.”

“No,” Paragon said. “That is for the cops. I came over here for this.”

Reaching a hand up to Brazier’s head, Paragon leaned in and locked his lips with Brazier’s.

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Special Delivery – Anders

Anders Brady switched from his large gorilla form to his human appearance. Once in the locker room, he stripped his uniform off and covered himself with a towel. After grabbing his shower kit, he picked up his bottle of body wash. The feel and heft of the bottle was off, and he looked at it. A very different label read Homer’s flea & tick shampoo.

“Hilarious. Just so funny,” Anders said while rolling his eyes. Shaking his head, he tossed the bottle into the nearby garbage can, then reached for the real body wash.

Twenty-five minutes later, Anders walked out of the locker room.

Amanda Charles waved him over. With a heavy sigh, Anders detoured in her direction. “Good job on the Fisticuffs call, earlier. He said you were fast and thorough.”

A corner of Anders mouth twitched. “Yeah, well, I am a professional.”

Amanda cocked a hip, lowered her clipboard, and tilted her head. “Look. You know-”

“Drop it,” Anders held up a hand. “I get it. My report needs to be filed and my shift isn’t complete.” Without waiting for a response, he turned on his heels and headed to his workstation.

Anders took several deep breaths before sitting down.

Logging in, his monitor flashed three names. Boulder, Xanx, and Damsel. Each name associated with a series of vitals, all within normal range. Following his normal routine he checked their locations and plotted potential paths to them.

While munching on his lunch, Anders read his email then filed his report for the Fisticuffs call. Checking on the vitals, he saw Boulder’s change, but not enough to warrant him paying a visit. Xanx’s vitals changed and stayed at the new level for over ten minutes, then lowered to normal.

Damsel’s vitals spiked. At the first beep, Anders had the map up and plotted the route. On the second beep, he switched over to his wrist panel and headed for the flyer’s launch area. At the long steady tone Anders called out, “EMT First Class Anders Brady responding to Damsel call.”

The tingle started in his gut then spread out. Hair sprouted over his body and his uniform stretched to fit his adjusted form. Anders’ arms became the size of tree trunks, his legs doubled that of his arms, and his face morphed to that of a large gorilla. He planted his two shovel sized hands on the pavement and pushed off.

With two loping strides, Anders leaped the distance to the next building. With this motion he cleared the four lane road fifteen stories below. His hands gripped the bar placed there for him and spun around it once before launching over to another building. Bounding off the side of the third building, Anders cleared a block and kept going.

Through his ape-like movements, Anders cleared the distance to Damsel’s last known location in a few minutes. A glance at his wrist panel showed the next building over to be his target. The next vault put him two floors below the roof of the building. His toes gripped the window ledge and his legs pushed him higher. Thick-fingered hands curled around the edge of the roof, then pulled him up to stand on it.

Anders’ head swiveled until he found the set of double doors leading to the maintenance area. A sudden yank, and the doors went wide. Lunging in, he bounded to the next landing. His wrist panel showed he needed to travel seven floors down to Damsel’s location.

Anders also noted that her vitals were declining. “This isn’t good,” his voice rumbled low in his throat. He gripped the hand rail and vaulted to the next landing. Next, he repeated this process until he was level with the blue dot that represented Damsel.

The door opened with an easy push and Anders went into the hallway. His wrist panel didn’t show a map of the building, but it showed how far away Damsel was. Dashing down the hallway, Anders approached an intersection. He turned to the right while checking his wrist panel. The blue dot moved closer as he strode the length of the hallway.

Several people darted for open doors or side halls as Anders stormed through. More than one called out “EMT coming through, clear the way!” Anders picked up the pace after hearing this.

Eventually, Anders stood next to the dot on his wrist panel. He found himself in a dead-end of a hall. He turned around,  didn’t see a door.

His wrist panel beeped, and he saw that Damsel’s vitals indicated she was asleep. “Or passed out,” he muttered. Anders placed a hand on a wall. Moving his fingers over the surface, he squinted as he slid his thick fingers over the dull grey paint.

An audible click sounded and a black line formed on the wall. A panel receded, then slid into the wall.

A man wearing a dark costume with various colored lines stood in the secret doorway. Six palm-sized flying devices wreathed his head. “What the..?”

“Out of the way,” Anders’ simian features growled. “I’m an EMT sent to get Damsel and take her to a hospital.” One of Anders tree trunk arms pushed the costumed man aside. He squeezed his bulk into the tiny walk way and advanced into a room the size of two closets.

Damsel slumped forward. The only thing keeping her in the seat were her hands tied behind it.

“Damsel,” Anders said with a loud stern voice. “I’m  your EMT. I need to transport you.”

A groan exited her rosebud shaped lips and her eyes fluttered open, then closed again.

“You aren’t going anywhere,” the nasal sounding voice said. Anders looked at the costumed man from before. “Damsel, and now you are my prisoner.”

The man flicked a hand. The small flying devices converged on Anders’ location. One sent an orange beam at Anders’ head.

“Owww!” Anders clutched his cheek. “I’m an EMT doing my job. She’s in critical condition and needs medical attention.” The sausage like finger extended at the blond haired hero.

“Possibly,” the costumed man said. “But I’m not letting her or you go. You’ll tell the Society. Then I’ll have to shut down my entire operation.” The man spread his hands wide. “I’ve worked too hard to get here, and no one is going to stop me.” The costumed man’s teeth clench and his nostrils flared as he pointed at Anders. “Put that monkey down!”

The machines encircling Anders zoomed in, each one letting out a beam.

Anders moved as best as the constricting room allowed. Several beams hit him, causing pain and making him flinch.

“Control. This is EMT Anders-”

“We’re aware EMT. Help is on the way,” the panicked voice over the earbud cut Anders’ words off.

Anders swatted at the small machines. His large flat hand batted two, making a hole for him to step through. In a single motion, he scooped Damsel, chair and all, and shouldered towards the door.

The devices targeted Anders expansive back as he squeezed into the three-step corridor. Their random bursts sent a steady stream of pain into his body, making him wince.

Anders pushed through the hall, then out the concealed door. The jam, plaster, and two potted plants crumbled as he muscled into the hallway.

The whir of the devices increased. The nasally sounding voice screamed behind Anders, “No! You’re not getting away. Theta-Epsilon!”

Several devices detached from wall, out of offices, and various other places. They converged behind and over Anders, making a dark machine-cloud. The machines morphed and merged into four basketball-sized devices.

Anders made a turn by bouncing off a corner and planting a hand on the floor. Two green beams pelted the walls, leaving softball-sized holes in their wake.

The machines made the turn, keeping close on Anders backside. Another shot a beam. Anders shifted, and the beam went over his shoulder. The window in front of him exploded.

“Control, this is Anders,” Anders shouted. “I’m transporting hero Damsel. My location will be the outside of the building I am presently located.”

The voice in the earbud responded. “Understood, EMT. Be safe.”

Anders paused at the open window and turned to face the machines. He reached an arm out the window and pulled himself out and up.

“NO!” The costumed man chasing Anders screamed. “Don’t let them get away!”

The devices zoomed after Anders.

Climbing the outside of the building was difficult. Anders managed to keep Damsel in the crook of his arm and rested her head in his palm. Using his free hand and both feet, he worked his way to the top of the building.

The devices zoomed around Anders. He couldn’t swat them away, instead he moved to the sides as best as he could. On more than one occasion, his handhold was shot out before he could take it. When this happened, he leaped to the side and repositioned.

Clearing the last floor, Anders reached the roof ledge. A blast rocketed through him and he bellowed at the top of his lungs. Damsel squirmed in his hand and her eyes flew open.

“Where am I,” she screamed. “Who are you? What are you doing?”

“I’m EMT Anders from Special Delivery,” Anders puffed out. “I’m trying to take you to a hospital.”

“What happened to Technix,” Damsel asked her head looking around. “Oh my God!” She pointed to one of the basketball-sized devices careening towards them.

Anders turned in a smooth fashion, jumped into the air, and volleyball spiked the device into the roof. It broke into several parts, each one sparking and two igniting on fire.

The maintenance doors burst open and Technix ran through. He extended a hand and the three remaining flying items merged into one larger item.

Anders’ eyes went wide, and he sucked in air. His uniform was torn and there were scorch marks. He spun his head around, looking for an escape route.

“We need to go,” Damsel shouted. “He’s going to kill us.”

“No shit, lady,” Anders growled.

Anders’ eyes went wide, and he grunted. Using both legs and his free hand, he bolted across the open space of the roof in a simian trot. “Hang on. I found one.”

Damsel rolled her head over and saw the tiny gap between the two buildings across the way. “You can’t be serious.”

“Unless you know something I don’t,” Anders retorted.

The large flying device shot out several electronic blasts in rapid succession. Each blast bit into the roof, scattering debris. More than once, a few blasts were close enough to singe Anders’ fur.

Damsel sat up as best as she could, grunting with pain. She pulled a device from her belt and tossed it over Anders’ shoulder. The arc the handheld device traveled carried it in front of Technix. Biting into the roof, the device erupted and spewed gelatinous fluid. Technix stepped back, but it wasn’t enough to keep him from getting covered. In the next second the fluid hardened, encasing Technix’s arms, one leg, and the front of his torso.

Anders planted both feet on the ledge, feeling his toes curl over the corner of the building. Compressing both legs, he leaned into the open air. He caught a glimpse of the traffic below. Six lanes of morning commute traffic. Gravity pulled on his heavy frame and he went past the point of no return. Extending his free hand, he pushed his legs straight.

Anders and his patient took to the air. Bestial roars coming from both mouths. The power of the jump carried them past one lane, then the next. Damsel’s hair fluttered behind her as the wind blew by. Spit flew from Anders’ open mouth.

With the third lane cleared, the duo also descended four floors of the building.

Anders’ body extended to it’s fullest when they cleared lanes four and five.

Halfway over six, Damsel saw what Anders aimed for. A cross bar set between the buildings. At the moment they were several stories above it, but they were falling faster.

The cement of the sidewalk and faces of the pedestrians blinked into focus. Damsel felt her ears pop.

Several people screamed and pointed up.

The sudden jerk forced Damsel flat on the furry arm of Anders.

Anders released the bar at the apex of his swing and pushed off a building. “Made it!”

Damsel stared at Anders. Her lips moved, but nothing came out. The fingers of one hand twined into his fur.

Bouncing off several more buildings and a few acrobatic turns, and Anders landed at the emergency room entrance. He placed Damsel on the gurney and smiled. “One Damsel in distress, rescued. I can check that one off the bucket list.”

Damsel blushed as she waved. The people in white coats wheeled her off.

Anders turned to leave. Two black boots and a fluttering cape caught his eye, and he waited.

“Are you Anders Brady?” The voice came from the well muscled form wearing the cape and midnight blue costume. Paladin landed.

“Uh..Yeah,” Anders said, his face flashing fear, happiness, confusion, and several more emotions.

“I’m here to give you this,” Paladin held out a gold plastic card. The laser hologram emblem of the Society on one side sparkled.

“Whoa!” Anders wide eyes turned back towards Paladin. “What is this for?”

“It’s an access key,” Paladin answered. “I’m pretty sure you know to what building.”

“Yeah,” Anders answered, running a large hand over his monkey head.

“Be there tomorrow at eight. Orientation for new highers begin at 8:30.” Paladin hovered then flew away.

The Angel

Jarryd Finely sighed as he walked through his front door into his dark house. Shedding his coat and thick boots, he moved to the kitchen. The clock on the microwave changed to 11:42pm as he pulled the fridge open. Jarryd finished the niggling amount of orange juice in the bottle, then tossed it in the recycling bin.

He grabbed the dish of leftovers his mother left for him. “Mmmmm. Meatloaf and green beans.” Jarryd walked down the short hall munching on the cold food. He tossed his bag on his bed, then undressed.

Wearing a towel, Jarryd shambled to the bathroom. He brushed his teeth while he waited for the shower to get hot.

As the water poured over him, Jarryd sighed again. “There has to be more to life than just work and sleep.” He let the soap and shampoo flow down the drain.

Toweling off, he moved back to his bedroom and put on an old pair of shorts.

Jarryd read a few news stories on his laptop. The most recent, that of Ajax and Thundra saving lives of school kids, got him thinking. “That is what I want to do. Save humanity and make the world a safe place.”

He shut down his browser and stood.

A noise from the outside of his window caught his attention. Jarryd bent a blind down and peered into the darkness.

His mouth fell open, and he leaned forward. His head crashed into the blinds and window.

Floundering for the pull cord, Jarryd got the blinds up on the third pull. Next he tugged the window open and breathed in the cold night air. His breath making a white plume as he blew it out.

“Jarryd Finely of Earth,” the glittery being said. The voice sounded like haunting wind chimes. It held out arms and nodded it’s head slowly. Wings from sprouted from the back of the creature. The long cloth covering the creature extended past where feet might have dangled. “I am Brynnian and I have been sent to grant your request.”

“My request,” Jarryd asked. He stuttered as his eyes looked up. The list of things Jarryd had ever asked for flashed behind his eyes and then stopped on his most recent. “You mean save humanity and make the world safe?”

“Precisely,” the angelic figure said with a smile and sparkly eyes.

“How’m I to do that? I am just a burger flipper.” Jarryd grimaced as heat traveled up his neck and landed on his face. “I barely passed high school and only go to community college part time.”

A seraphic smile flowed onto Brynnian’s face, “That is of little consequence. All that matters is that you discharge your duty to best of your abilities.”

Jarryd arched an eyebrow and a corner of his mouth tightened.

“I guess I could do that,” Jarryd said. “but I don’t have abilities. I ride a moped. Flying is right out and I imagine I’m gonna to have to fight and lift heavy things.”

A lilt of a chuckle escaped from Brynnian. “I am here to bring you those abilities.”

Brynnian’s arm floated towards Jarryd.

Jarryd opened his eyes and mouth, but he was held in place and unable to speak.

Brynnian’s finger fluttered down over Jarryd’s forehead, eyes, nose, mouth, and chin.

A tingle darted over Jarryd’s body and he gasped. Throwing his head up his arms splayed and tightened. His entire body screamed but only little whimpers escaped his mouth.

“It is done,” Brynnian said. “You are ready.”

Gasping for his wind, and feeling the cold wind, Jarryd asked, “Ready? What abilities do I have? Where do I go? What do I do? Who-”

“You get that answer in time,” Brynnian answered with his chiming voice and another smile on his face.

“But-”

“You have been given the ability to save all humanity,” Brynnian said and flapped his wings.

“Wait!” Jarryd reached for the strange being. “What I am saving humanity from?”

Brynnian swept an arm to stop past a shoulder. Another slow nod and Brynnian vanished.

“Shit!” Jarryd dashed back to the bathroom. He wiped the remnants of the fog off the mirror. Looking at himself in the mirror he didn’t see anything different.

Just as he turned his head, Jarryd saw a black figure on his neck. It looked like a tattoo of two pointed spears crossed midway down their shafts.

“Oh, man,” Jarryd said running fingers over the mark. “I need to explain that to Mom. Hell, I need to explain it to everyone. Hell, I need to have it explained to me. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do.”

Rogue Telekinetic – Cowboy Cadillac

Jack Davis slowed his car to a stop at the red traffic light. He spotted the elderly woman as she pushed her walker into the street. Her foot shook as it left the sidewalk and she stepped on the first of several white stripes of the crosswalk.

The low rumble rose from behind Jack, and he shifted his eyes to the rear-view mirror. He spotted the large red pickup truck as it loomed next to him in the adjacent lane. Jack pivoted his head to look in the cab at the large driver with a shaved head.

Jack noted of excessive use of chrome on the outside of the vehicle. He saw the gun rack with a two-by-four nestled on one set of hooks. The red fabric of a rebel flag draped over the head rests of the seat. Jack also made out the heavy beat of loud music.

With a heavy sigh, Jack turned his attention back to the old woman crossing the street.

The old woman progressed to the halfway point of Jack’s car. The white walking figure on the sign shown bright on both posts. Out of the corner of his eye, Jack noticed the driver of the pickup truck turn and look at the old woman. A smile spread across the fat face of the truck driver. That smile shifted a laugh and finally a guffaw.

Jack raised an eyebrow.

The older woman inched further along her path. The woman paused in her palsied journey for a few breaths when she passed Jack’s car.

Jack spotted the shoulder of the truck driver twitch. It twitched again. A loud sound, reminiscent of a train horn pierced the air. Jack jumped in his seat and he turned to look at the old lady.

The old lady slumped on her walker, her shoulders heaving. Jack saw the head of the old woman look at the truck driver. The old woman’s legs flexed and then her feet gripped the asphalt as she moved forward.

The timer displayed on the crosswalk poles. It blinked the last of the double digits.

The old woman started her journey once again.

Watching the fat man in the truck laugh, Jack breathed in deep and let it out slow. He focused on the large, shiny, passenger-side mirror. With a swift nod, the mirror separated from the truck and crashed to the ground. Next Jack shifted his gazed to the two hubcaps he could see. In unison, they collapsed on themselves, then fell off the wheels.

Jack’s next focus point was the rear-view mirror in the truck. It fell without making a sound. The truck driver pivoted his head from the old lady, to his fallen mirror. He leaned down, and Jack target the other side mirror. As if in a movie, the mirror fell as the truck driver sat up holding the rear-view mirror in multiple pieces.

Jack saw that the old lady finished her journey across the road. She hadn’t stepped onto the sidewalk, but the lights shifted to allow the drivers to progress.

Jack winked at the windshield of the truck. Spiderweb cracks appeared, making the entire screen opaque.

Seeing the elderly lady on the sidewalk, Jack inched passed the unmoving pickup truck. With a sideways glance at the front grill, Jack pictured the wench and chrome brush guard on the ground. The clang of metal on asphalt echoed in the downtown area.

Jack drove through the intersection and turned into the parking garage. The truck driver stood outside of his vehicle shaking and scratching his head.

With a nod from Jack, steam erupted under the hood of the once impressive pickup truck. Jack continued on into the parking garage and headed to work.

Special Delivery – Jason

Jason Cromwell arrived on the scene. He stepped from the red and white colored emergency vehicle. Approaching the group of officers, Jason said, “EMT from Special Delivery.” The officers held the tape up for him to pass under. He looked around. There was no sign of a fight or even a simple struggle. Taking a quick glance at his wrist panel, he saw his client’s marker five feet away.

“What is Special Delivery doing here?” Detective Collins said as he turned towards Jason. “There’s no supers here. Not even an indication of one.” Collins spread his hands as he turned.

“Collins, how nice,” Jason flashed a plastic smile at the detective. “You know how we work. One of our alarms went off and a tracker led me here.”

Collins turned back to the body and pointed. “This must be your guy.” He squatted and lifted the orange blanket covering the body. “I don’t suppose you have a name?”

“Ummm…”, Jason read his wrist panel. “No.” Narrowing his eyes, Jason re-read the information. Client 15.

“What do you mean no?” Collins shifted next to Jason and looked at the wrist panel. “Client 15. What kind of name, super or otherwise, is that?”

“A wealthy one,” Jason locked eyes with the detective and smiled. “And a dead one.”

“Not to mention naked,” Collins held the blanket back so that Jason could see the entirety of the corpse.

“Interesting,” Jason said standing up. “Just a minute.”

Walking a few paces away, Jason tapped his earpiece. “Control, this is Jason Cromwell. I’m at the location of Client 15. He’s deceased and not wearing any clothes. Do you still want me to bring him in?”

“Correct EMT Cromwell,” the voice in Jason’s ear said. “He paid for the privilege until the end. He gets the privilege.”

“Understood,” Jason let his hand fall and turned back to Collins.

“I guess you have him,” Detective Collins said extending a clipboard. “Just sign here.”

Jason sign his name on the form.

Next, Jason focused on the body and envisioned it floating. Just as he pictured a gurney under the corpse carrying it, the body lifted with no visible support. Jason then walked, pushing the body, back to his customized emergency vehicle. The rear double-doors opened of their own accord and Jason slid the body in, feet first.

With a quick wave, Jason entered his vehicle and drove off.

Jason stopped at the building his wrist panel indicated. If he didn’t know better, he would have said it was vacant. The outside was clean and there weren’t any broken windows, but there was one only one other car in the lot.

He pulled around the back and found a set of double-doors propped open. Jason backed the vehicle up to the doors. Next, he transported the body to a waiting gurney.

Walking through the double doors, Jason pushed the body. “Hello?” Jason to called. “EMT Cromwell from Special Delivery.” Jason hung his head and smiled to himself. Now he caught the joke.

“This way,” a voice called, and a light flashed on in a room down the small hallway.

Jason kept walking towards the room. “Why do we need to bring a corpse here? What’s wrong with the morgue.”

A figure stepped out of the room. “Because Client 15 paid for the privilege.”

Jason now recognized the voice. It was the one he talked to before.

Letting out a sigh, Jason turned the gurney into the room.

The man pulled the doors closed behind him as Jason settled the corpse under the light. “Doc, would it be OK if I watched? I’ve never seen an autopsy.”

“By all means, EMT Cromwell,” the doctor smiled flatly. “My name is Doctor Emit Reymark. This is the autopsy of Client 15. Present is EMT Jason Cromwell. Let’s begin.”

Jason looked around to see what the Doctor was doing, but he saw nothing.

“The body has several contusions and abrasions,” Reymark said as he ran his gloved hands over the body. “There are old scars, some required stitches.”

Jason looked at the body where Reymark was examining. He saw scars covering the body and arms. Checking the legs, he saw the same type of scarring. There were fresh bruises and other residue covering it as well.

“Client 15 appears to have been a recipient of a severe beating. And possibly engaged in activities such as fighting, martial arts, and even bondage.” Reymark listed off the various wounds and scars. He added in possible causes as well.

Jason’s mind raced with what might have happened to this client.

“EMT, please hand me that finger print card and ink,” Reymark said, tapping Jason on the shoulder.

Jason moved and handed the card and ink pad. He watched as Reymark put the ink on the corpse’s fingers. Next Reymark rolled each finger onto the card.

Reymark pulled the card up to the light. “Ahh…This will never do.” Reymark handed the card to Jason. “Do you see that?”

Jason looked at the card. He knew what fingerprints were, he had to get his taken when he landed this job. Jason expected to see the swirls of fingerprints. Instead he saw smears. Not a single ridge appeared. Jason turned his head to look at Reymark.

“That is the mark of a pro,” Reymark said. “The fingerprints of the corpse are unreadable. They have been removed by acid.”

Jason stared at the corpse slack-jawed.

Reymark moved onto the face and head of the corpse. Running a gloved hand over the hair, Reymark pulled back dark stains. “The corpse has some type of dye in his hair.” Thumbing back an eyelid, Reymark poked a finger into the eye. A small, colored disk came with his finger. “And some colored contact lenses.”

Next, Reymark put a finger into the mouth of the body. He pulled a partial denture plate. “This should help in the identificat…Nope. Custom made and not by a lab. Well made though.” Reymark, put the recent items into a dish set to the side.

Rolling the head to the side, Reymark leaned into check the hairline and jaw. “Hmmm. Magnifier.” He held out a hand to Jason.

Jason looked around the tool tray and put the magnifying glass in Reymark’s hand. “Nice. You might work well at this.” Reymark examined the back of the corpse’s head.

“Jason, what do you suspect these are?” Reymark pointed to a series of small white scars buried in the hair of the corpse.

“Well, that is an unusual area to be wounded in,” Jason narrowed his eyes as he leaned in. “They are hidden in the hair, so I am going to say he had them done. Making this plastic surgery or reconstruction.”

“Excellent!” Reymark smiled. “Yes, I will have to suggest you as my assistant.”

Jason raised an eyebrow.

“Moving on.”

“Slight tan around the mouth area. Darker than the cheeks and top of the head,” Reymark ran a finger vigorously cross the forehead. A smudge of the same color of the mouth area came back.

“Tanning spray?” Jason looked at the finger.

“Excellent, my boy. You are a good choice.” Reymark giggled a little.

Reymark changed his attention to the arms of the body. He pulled the skin tight around the muscular forearms. “What do you notice here?”

Jason looked at the odd shape of the right arm. Instead of a straight line there was a slight angle to it. “It looks like it isn’t straight. Possibly a fracture that wasn’t set correctly or healed poorly.”

“Yes, precisely,” Reymark said tapping Jason on the shoulder. “You are going to be my assistant from now on. Lot of work. You will like it.”

Jason blinked several times. “Sure.”

The rest of the autopsy proceeded as normal. Reymark cut into the body and weighted various organs. He noted that the appendix was missing. Reymark also commented on the sewing of the intestines.

Several hours passed since Jason brought the body in, but it seemed like only a few minutes to him.

As they were finishing up, Jason asked, “Doctor? Who is this?”

Closing the zipper onto body-bag, Reymark looked at his new assistant. “Isn’t it obvious? The body is heavily scarred, meaning no healing ability beyond normal capability. He has an account with Special Delivery that conceals his name and identity, meaning large quantities of money or high contacts. He was found cleaned of all incriminating evidence of where he was. This means he thought this through to the end. Add all that together and throw in what you know of the super community that you deal with, and you can only come to one conclusion. This is…?”

Jason’s mouth closed and opened saying a single work. “B-”

“Shush!” Reymark clamped a hand over Jason’s mouth. “Not so it could be recorded. Let’s show him a little respect.”

Rogue Telekinetic – Double Parked

Jack Davis turned down the third row of the parking lot. His head oscillated back and forth looking for a spot. Like the previous rows, he didn’t see one. Turning at the far end, Jack spotted an opening around the halfway point of the fourth row.

Picking up his speed, Jack found that it was an opening, but not a wide one. The car, a compact of no distinguishing features, straddled the yellow line separating two parking spots. This left half a parking spot on either side of the car clear.

Jack gripped the steering wheel and continued on his path. Once he exited the fourth row, he still had not found a spot. A glance in his rear-view mirror showed a young driver pulling to false vacant spot behind him. The young driver glared at the double parked car and his lips moved.

“This will never do,” Jack said to no one.

A quick spin of the steering wheel and Jack pulled into the loading zone. Getting out, he stood on the sidewalk and focused on the dark blue compact. In his head, Jack envisioned a large hand gripping the vehicle and moving it like a toy car.

The compact sedan slid forward on the pavement. Fresh tire marks showed in the spot, so Jack worked at having the hand pick the vehicle up. Beads of sweat appeared on Jack’s forehead and he reached out a hand brace himself on the roof of his car.

The blue compact hovered out of the parking spot and down the fourth row. The young driver zipped around the parking lot and parked, correctly, in one of the now opened slots.

Jack turned his head, following the car. The compact turned the corner of the mega-shopping complex. Not being able to see, Jack pictured the hand letting go of the car.

Wiping the sweat from his face, Jack started his car and pulled into the other vacant spot.

As Jack approached the shopping complex, a man came out with a small bag. He walked to where Jack and the young driver had parked. “Where the hell is my car?” The man glanced around and hurried up to Jack. “Are you parked over there,” he pointed to where Jack parked.

“Yes,” Jack turned to face the man. “It was the only open spot.”

“I was parked there.” The man’s eyes narrowed as he looked at Jack.

“I don’t know what to tell you,” Jack shrugged.

A noise grabbed their attention. The garbage truck pulled into the lot and aimed for the side of the building. A loud crunching sound was heard. Jack and the man hurriedly walked over.

The garbage truck driver activated a few buttons and the arms tossed the dumpster up over the top of the truck. Debris and other things fell from the dumpster into the opening on the truck. Next the dumpster descended and the garbage truck pulled out.

As Jack and the man turned the corner they saw the dumpster and a very scratched blue compact sedan.

“My car,” the man grabbed his head and fell to his knees.

“Well, the sign does say no parking.” Jack smirked, turned and walked into the shopping complex.

Gargantua

“You big meany,” the little girl with pigtails said as she stuck her tongue out. “You should stop right now.” Her rosy cheeks matched the pink in her jumper. “If Gargantua shows up, you’ll be sorry.” She leaned forward waggling a finger with her other fist on her hip.

“Hahaha. Little one, you should worry about yourself.” The hulking figure of Brute approached the little girl, a feral smile on his lips. “Gargantua isn’t here to protect anyone.” Taking in the crowd of cowering people, Brute bellowed, “You know the drill. Cash. On the table. Now.”

Several people moved to comply.

Brute stormed into the Golden Stork Casino ten minutes earlier. After he had knocked out the three armed security guards, Brute smashed open their money cart and dumped it over. With a thundering bellow, he collapsed a pillar after he saw the cart was empty.

Now, he was going to rob the patrons to make up for his loss. He knew better than to tangle with the vaults. They were triple protected and beyond his ability to break open.

“Gargantua!” The little girl screamed.

Brute jerked back to face her. “Stop that.”

“Why,” the little girl asked. “Are you afraid she will hear it? If she does she might show up.”

“She’s tall and strong,” Brute snorted. “She won’t hear you. Besides, she would never be in a place like this.”

“Gargantua!”

Brute looked around. Several people stopped moving to place their money on the table. Looking left, then right, Brute added to the shout. “GARGANTUA!”

He waited again.

“See. Nothing.” Brute let out a belly laugh that rattled the nearby glass.

Seeing that he was right, the patrons began to pile their money on the table again.

The little girl let out a humph and stomped over to Brute.

“Ohhh…You are so cute when you’re mad.” He reached down and patted the three foot tall girl on her head.

She kicked him in the shin. Brute didn’t even flinch.

“Look, kid. I don’t really want to hurt you. You’re feisty, and I like that.” Brute kneeled down and placed a card-table sized hand on her shoulder. Her knees flexed, but she remained upright. “But if you don’t stop bothering me, I’m gonna have to spank you.”

A collective gasp escaped several people, and some moved to grab the child. A glare from Brute froze them all in their tracks.

“You wouldn’t.” The little girl screwed up her face and narrowed her eyes.

“Yes, I would.” Brute’s shoulder jumped, and the girl flew several yards. Her limp body collided with the wooden teller booth. Her small form cratered the wall, bringing the marble counter on top of her.

Brute’s face flattened and his eyes narrowed. Standing up in a smooth motion, he shouted. “Anyone else?” Several people visibly shook, and a few had wet spots on their pants. “I didn’t think so.”

Brute moved to the table where all the cash laid in a flat pile. He raked it into a large bag he carried.

The rubble of the teller bank shifted and a grumble came through the dust and splintered wood.

“You forgot about me.”

The voice was loud and low, but no mistaking the feminine edge it carried.

As the debris shifted and fell to the side, a statuesque woman, replete with mask stood in the wake of the destruction. Her head brushed the cathedral ceiling as she extended to her full height.

“Brute. I gave you a chance. Now it’s my turn.” With strides the length of banquet tables, she cleared the distance to the muscle bound thug. Her oven sized hands encased Brute, pinning his arms to his sides.

“But…but…but…The little girl.” Brute’s mouth moved and his eyes opened to the size of dinner plates.

Gargantua smirked and shook her head. The swaying pig tails caught his attention.

“Mother fuc-”

Gargantua twitched her wrist, making Brute’s teeth click. “You kiss your mother with that potty mouth?”