Glimpse | Teen Ink


July 12, 2011
By HaleyStar GOLD, Mattoon, Illinois
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HaleyStar GOLD, Mattoon, Illinois
12 articles 2 photos 35 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The dog? You are named after a dog?"
"I had a lot of fond memories of that Dog."~Indiana Jones~

"Can you knot?"
"I cannot."
"You can knot?"
"I cannot knot." ~Winnie the Pooh movie~

Author's note: One day, I found myself wondering what would happen if someone found out the secret identity of a superhero, and so Glimpse was born.

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words…but in this life I’ve found that most sayings like that don’t apply to me. Lately I’ve been wondering if whoever came up with this quote was talking about normal pictures; the ones that your parents dress you all up for every school year just to get them back to find that you closed you eyes, or didn’t smile with your teeth; the photos that record each stage of an infants life, put together in a scrapbook to show their blossoming into a child; the photos that catch a rare breath taking sunset just before the grey of twilight.

The picture Andrew took me was worth more than just a thousand words. It was more than a proverbial knife ready to sever all the lies I had built up to protect myself. It could mean the end of me forever.

To cope with it, I tried making up a list of words of worth for that picture--because I’m a natural-born list-maker--and I thought up a few more than just a thousand words. At the top of my list were the worst possible outcomes that the picture could bring: Sudden lack of anonymity; eminent death; a threat to my loved ones. The list went on and on, and I knew that I was toast.

To set the record straight, I’ve never done anything remotely along the lines of what you might be expecting of me by now. I’m not a crooked senator caught up in a scandal, and Andrew isn’t just some skeezy photographer trying to make a quick fortune by documenting said scandal. I’m actually only a seventeen year old girl, and Andrew happens to be a good friend of the family (at least where my parents were concerned).

So why am I afraid of what the picture will bring? That’s a good question.

For about two years now, I’ve been leading a double life, only one of which my parents and peers know about. In that life, I’m the studious Riley Marie Giovanni; all legs and no grace. I attend Wainscot Private Academy on a full scholarship for playing the cello and I put up with the itchy grey jumper they call a uniform. I wear thick glasses you might see on someone over sixty, and I glance over the top of them, because I don’t really need them.

When I come home to our two bedroom apartment, I stow my book bag inside and then race downstairs to bus tables for five hours in my parents’ cookie-cutter café. In this life, to be seen or heard is a failure on my part, because my goal is to be anonymous, just because it makes things a little easier.

At night, when my parents crash in their closet sized-room, I change into something less anonymous, and slip out on the fire escape to start my second life: that of a spunky, pink-haired, crime-fighting superhero.

I hope by now that the puzzle pieces are starting to come together for you. If not then let me go further to tell you that the picture Andrew took of me was when I was taking the pink wig off while I was still dressed as my superhero alter ego. A picture that showed my secret identity being revealed.

“Riley,” he chuckled, glancing up from the eyepiece of his camera to look at me, “Aren’t you a little early for Halloween?”

“W-what are you doing here?” I asked.

“I moved into my new apartment a few blocks down, and your parents invited me over for supper to celebrate,” he replied, still looking at me with a quizzical frown as he twisted the lens cap back on his camera. “Now what are you-“

“Andrew! You’re here!” My father called from the window two stories up, “Come on up. As soon as Riley gets back, we can chow down.”

I was thankful for two things at that moment: one, my father couldn’t see me on the fire escape; because it was on the side of the building, and two, he had distracted Andrew long enough for me to hurry up and dive through my window out of sight.

That’s the last time I go for a late afternoon patrol, I thought sourly, yanking my leggings off, and unzipping the tight metallic silver dress. I tore my hair out of the wig cap and brushed through my hair frantically, pulling on my school uniform before I climbed out my window again.

By the time I ran around to the front of the building, up the stairs of my parents’ café, and made it to the front door of our apartment, I was breathless.
I sucked in a deep breath, held it for ten seconds, and when I was sure that my heart rate was down, and I once again looked like the docile Riley my parents knew and loved, I opened the door, and trudged in.

Mom smiled up at me as she poured the red wine into three glasses, distributing them to Andrew and my father, while keeping one for herself. “Hey, how was Cello practice?” She asked, disappearing in the kitchen to grab a basket of breadsticks to put on the table.

I heaved a fake sigh, “Oh, okay I guess. Although I screwed up on a couple of notes and Mr. Sidle started shouting in French again.”

That was a lie. My Cello practice had actually been cancelled for the day because Mr. Sidle’s mother was having surgery. I had taken those three hours of cancelled Cello practice and put them towards my patrol today in the daylight, and boy, had that robber’s face looked priceless. I think he wet himself.

“That man,” she said, shaking her head with a tiny smile.

I followed her into the dining room, and put on a fake surprised look when I saw Andrew sitting at the opposite end of the table from my dad. “Andrew! What are you doing here? It’s been what, two years since I’ve seen you?” I asked, hoping for my sake that he’d play along.

Andrew furrowed his brow at me, taking in my school uniform, but he gave me a weak nod anyway.

“Andrew got an apartment close to ours, Riley; didn’t your father tell you?”

“I don’t think so,” I replied, sitting down in a chair off to Andrew’s right.

“Guess it slipped my mind,” Dad said, sipping on his wine, his eyes scrutinizing me, “that’s an interesting fashion accessory, Rainbow.”

“Hmm?” I asked.

“I don’t recall aviator goggles being part of your school’s uniform.”

I touched the goggles I had forgotten to take off, and put on my best fake smile, “I forgot I had them on. We were talking about WWI, and I brought them in to show my class. Instead of stuffing them in my backpack, I decided to just put them around my neck so they wouldn’t be damaged.”

“That’s my girl,” dad said, and I relaxed, but maybe it was too soon for that.

Mom gave me a funny look, “You know Riley, speaking of which, I didn’t see you bring your backpack home today. Are you shirking from your homework again?”

“Crap!” I hissed, trying to regain my composure. I was making so many mistakes; too many. It was all that stupid Andrew’s fault. “I must’ve forgotten it back at school.” I said, smacking my forehead.

That was another lie. My back pack was sitting upstairs in my room, next to the costume I had neglected to shove in my closet before ducking out the window.

Dad shook his head sternly, “You seem to be forgetting a lot today, Rainbow. Don’t make a habit of it, or you’ll wind up like me.”

I stabbed the pasta on my plate a little too forcefully, and I tried to ignore Andrew who was openly staring at me in front of my parents. I felt my head snap up, and I flashed a smile at him, “So why’d you move? Was your other apartment too small or something?”

“No…I got a job as a freelance photographer for a local newspaper. You know, taking pics of whatever catches my eye, and hoping that their good enough to sell to the paper,” He replied, and then he got a coy smile, “And the pictures that I really need to take are one’s of that vigilante, what’s her name…Glimpse, isn’t it?”

“Fat chance of that,” my dad said, “She only comes out at night.”

“Oh, I’ve actually spotted her in the daylight,” he replied, and I kicked him under the table. Andrew bit his lip, glaring over at me.

“If you ask me, she should just let the cops handle the criminals. Vigilantes are just another form of a criminal. They think they are above the law.”

“Nevertheless, a photo of her secret identity would make me a millionaire,” Andrew said, and he glanced at me. I felt my face pale.

So maybe he was a skeezy photographer trying to get a fortune for a scandal. The scandal being a seventeen year old girl named Riley turning out to be the superhero, Glimpse.

Through the rest of dinner, I watched for any sign of him about to blab what he saw on the fire escape, but he only talked about boring things that my parents seemed to love, and he kept his camera safely tucked away in his bag.

At nine thirty, Andrew collected his bag and said he needed to hit the road despite my parents’ protests. I offered to walk him downstairs, and he accepted all too willingly. We walked down the stairs wordlessly until we came to the landing, and then he turned around with his poker face on.

“Mind telling me what’s going on, Glimpse?” He asked, picking a pink strand of hair off of my uniform that thankfully my parents hadn’t noticed.

“Not here,” I hissed, “Meet me up on the roof at ten thirty, not a second later, and bring your camera.” I left him there, stomping angrily up the stairs again.

I waited for that long agonizing hour, wedged between my parents on the sofa while they watched the Bill Cosby show. Thankfully, they retired earlier than usual, giving me the time to head up stairs, and change into my costume. After making sure my wig was secure, I ducked out of my window, and climbed the fire escape all the way up to the roof five stories above my window.

Andrew was waiting there for me, sitting on an old forgotten crate, with his camera in his hands.

“Well I guess that settles it then,” he chuckled, not looking up at me.


“You are her. You’re Glimpse,” Andrew said, shaking his head with a smile, “I thought maybe, just maybe that I had caught you coming back from something stupid like Comic con, but now that you came up here dressed as Glimpse, I know you have to be her.”

I gritted my teeth angrily. I was so stupid! He hadn’t been totally sure, and now I had confirmed it for him! I was an idiot.

“Give me that camera. Don’t give me a reason to hurt you,” I hissed, holding out my hand expectantly.

He tossed it to me, and I couldn’t believe it was going to be that easy. I turned the camera on, and put it on display mode, and swore softly under my breath when I saw the message that said ‘no memory stick’.

“You didn’t honestly believe that I’d bring it here, did you?” Taking the camera from me, and waving it tauntingly in front of me, “I’m not stupid. I wasn’t sure if you were Glimpse, but I knew if you actually were, you’d have the power to take the camera from me. So I stashed the memory stick somewhere safe, after I made several copies, and set up a dead man’s switch to send that picture to everyone here in the city if I don’t switch it off by a certain time, in case you decide to…I don’t know, get rid of me.”

“What do you want from me?” I demanded, narrowing my eyes suspiciously.

“Everything. I want to know all about your life;both sides of it; no lies. But not right now, judging from the hour at night of our clandestine meeting, I’ll wager you’re planning to go do a little crime fighting while mommy and daddy sleep comfortably in their beds. Don’t worry about when or where, I’ll find you,” he said, smiling wickedly, acutely aware of the threat in his last three words.

He snapped one last picture of me for the road, “That’s a keeper,” he murmured, and darted down the fire escape out of sight.

Andrew had been right about one thing, as soon as I was sure he was gone, and that my parents were in a dead sleep, I went on my nightly patrol of my neighborhood, and then branched out farther, where all the large banks and businesses were, but I should’ve stayed home. In the morning I had to deal with the consequences of being a Superhero.

I was dog-tired as usual, but the difference between last night and all the other nights before, was that I had been distracted. I was so angry with myself and at Andrew for exploiting me that I made mistakes; too many. I came across a bank robbery taking place, and decided that I’d have to stop it, but as I took care of the robber in sight, I had neglected to check and make sure there weren’t others. Mistake number one.

Someone bashed my head in with a baseball bat, and it was lights out for me. I woke up to a cop’s shoe nudging me, and when I looked up at him, my nose met the barrel of his hand gun. I moaned softly, and laid there for a moment, and then I stood up, swaying dizzily, all the while his gun tracking my every movement.

“Glimpse, you are under arrest. You have the right to remain silent. Any thing you say can and will be used against you in a court of law,” he said, and I sighed. I wasn’t big on the whole resisting arrest thing, so I stood there, hoping I’d be able to talk my way out of this instead of bolting. Mistake number two.

“Do you have to be so loud?” I complained, pressing a hand firmly against my ringing head, and looked at him curiously. He was about 6’2, with broad shoulders, sweaty hands, and beady black eyes that watched me nervously.

“Easy rookie, she’s not resisting you,” a woman called, and I jolted in surprise. Mistake number three.

In his nervous state, that slight movement sent the rookie over the edge. He squeezed the trigger, and the sound of his gun firing exploded in thousands of echoes all around the room. I didn’t even realize that I had been shot until I felt the warmth of my own blood start to roll down my arm.

I glanced down, my stomach rolling nanauseously.

“You, idiot, look what you’ve done! Do you know how much paperwork I’m going to have to fill out now?” She growled snatching the gun away from him. She emptied it out, the bullets clanging to the floor, and she thrust the gun back at him angrily.

My legs crumpled beneath me, and I sat on the floor, focusing on her authoritative voice to distract myself from the queasiness. The bullet had only grazed my skin, but that on top of the baseball bat to the head was almost too much for me to handle.

The woman officer knelt down beside me, her voice soothing now, “The ambulance is just outside. Do you think you can walk?”

I looked up into her kind green eyes, framed by light golden lashes and the blonde tendrils of her hair. Her lips were small and pink, parted slightly on her freckled face as she waited for my answer. I couldn’t find my voice from the swimming in my head, so I nodded slightly, and she helped me up to my feet, allowing me to lean into her so I wouldn’t fall over.

The shot brought other officers inside, with guns aimed, and I shrunk back anxiously, but the woman officer guided me through them, murmuring reassurances into my ear. The officers stared at us curiously as we passed, and then at the rookie who followed us with his head down, and his feet dragging in an ashamed way.

Outside, a line of cop cars surrounded the bank, along with two fire trucks, and three ambulances, all expecting the worst possible outcome. An EMT rushed to my side, and I cringed at his practiced hands that hoisted me up onto the bumper without warning. He flashed a bright light into my eyes, while another examined my bullet wound. The female officer stayed, and watched me silently, her green eyes unreadable.

“What’s your name?” He asked.

“Ri-I mean Glimpse,” I said quickly, mentally kicking myself.

He raised an eyebrow at my slip, and checked my blood pressure, while the other EMT wrapped my arm lightly. His hand brushed along the swollen side of my head, and I winced, partially from the pain, but mostly, because part of my brown hair slipped out from under the wig cap.

“Can you tell me what happened?” He asked, examining my head further.

I hesitated, and his eyes zeroed in on mine. “I was trying to stop the guys robbing the bank. I disarmed one, but another snuck behind me, and hit me over the head with a bat.”

“Anything else?” he asked.

“I remember waking up to a nervous cop,” I said, nodding over to the rookie who was waiting guiltily in the passenger seat of a cruiser. “I remember this officer…she surprised me, and I moved, so he shot me.”

The EMT glanced over at the woman officer, and she smiled at me before looking at him. “The kid’s just a trigger-happy rookie. He’s afraid of his own shadow, let alone someone like Glimpse here.”

“And you are?” He asked.

“Officer Sidle,” she replied, and I felt my eyes widen at the name. I wondered if she was any relation to Mr. Sidle, my Cello teacher. She didn’t look old enough to be his wife, unless he was big on robbing the cradle. She could be his younger sister, but their hair colors were too different.

The EMT saw my reaction “Is there anything the matter?”

I felt my cheeks flush nervously, “N-no.”

“Do you mind waiting here?” Officer Sidle asked me, “I need to speak him.” She said, gesturing to the EMT.

I stared at her quizzically for a moment, and then sighed, nodding my head. “Good,” she smiled. Officer Sidle whistled, and another officer came to her side curiously. “You mind waiting here with her, Todd?”

“No. I’ve got nothing better to do,” he replied, appraising me. He leaned against the bumper, his hand resting unconsciousously on his gun. Officer Sidle led the EMT away from us, and I pulled my knees up to my chest, resting my head on my knees, tiredly. I contemplated on escaping then. I knew that I only had one guard at the moment, and he was paying attention to everything else except me, but a small fear kept me frozen in this position.

I counted at least twenty cops within the same block, all armed, all potentially dangerous to me, and I honestly didn’t feel like getting shot again. Officer Sidle wasn’t gone long enough for me to make up my mind. She returned with the EMT, her smile still kind.

“Did Rodger give you your shot?” The EMT asked me after a moment of studying a clipboard, checking off a list of procedures.

“Shot?” I asked. Rodger? He must’ve been the other EMT.

“Yeah, a tetanus shot.”


“If you don’t mind, I guess I’ll take care of that. You know…standard procedure.”

I nodded, and he dug around a metal box with a red cross on the front, for a syringe. When he found it, he sat down beside me, and I held out my arm, watching him dab my skin with an alcohol pad. I turned my head when he took my arm in his hands and slid the needle into my shoulder.

“Don’t like shots?” Officer Sidle asked. There was something about her smile that seemed off. It was forced, I could tell, but there was something else in there. Guilt, maybe?

“No, not really, but I can’t think of anyone who does,” I replied. Todd chuckled softly. I looked up at the EMT when he was done, and his expression was off too. There was something fishy going on here.

I slid off of the bumper to my feet, and my knees buckled unexpectedly beneath me, and the only thing that kept me from falling to the asphalt was Todd. He held me up as my feet struggled to find the ground, and it took me a moment to realize that the reason I couldn’t stand was because he had totally swung me up in his arms.

Todd passed me off to the EMT who set me on the stretcher despite my protests. Officer Sidle climbed in beside him dismissing Officer Todd with a look, “How long until the medicine takes effect?” She asked, and I realized I had been duped. Sure, I thought I had been a little too tipsy for normal, but I had chalked that up to the blow to the head, not because I was drugged.

I realized now that her smile had been a fake all along. That I had trusted a snake, and now I was paying for it. Mistake number four.

She shut the door, and I struggled against the EMT’s restraining hands, and against the thick cloud of medicine muddling my thoughts. The ambulance shuddered slightly, and then it was moving, its siren wailing annoyingly.

“It shouldn’t be too much longer. I can tell it’s already started to take effect,” he replied.

“Shhh, sweetie, its okay,” Officer Sidle said, helping the EMT trap my flailing limbs.

“What did you do to me?” I cried, my back arching, the only thing not being held down. I was fighting with all I had left in me, and at that point, it wasn’t much. I felt my strength weaken, and soon I couldn’t even lift my arms. The EMT loosened his death grip on my now aching wrists, and strapped my limbs down, as Officer Sidle muttered more reassurances. “It’s only to make you sleep. You need to rest,” She cooed.

The EMT stuck a pulse monitor on my finger, and then checked my blood pressure again, commenting that it was still pretty high. I felt my eyes flutter tiredly and I shook my head trying to clear it, but that didn’t help. I slipped into unconsciousousness after that.

I woke up sometime later when I felt another needle biting into my arm. This one wasn’t drugging me, it was taking my blood. I blinked slightly confused for a moment. Where was I? Why couldn’t I move? But finally I remembered.

I watched the EMT twist the cap on the glass vial. He pulled the back off of a label, and stuck it on the vial before writing ‘Glimpse’ on it with a sharpie marker. After he was done with this, he positioned my head so that it was facing up, and he flashed a light in my eyes. I winced, but was otherwise still. My eyes wandered tiredly after that. We were still in the ambulance, and I was still strapped to the stretcher, although I doubted that I’d be able to move much even if my limbs weren’t restricted.

I looked over to where Officer Sidle was sitting. She was holding my worn leather jacket, and gloves. Alongside her was my pink wig. I let out a shaky breath, and closed my eyes. My heart on the monitor jumped from a lazy beat to a jackrabbit on steroids.

“Glimpse,” Officer Sidle said when she heard the frantic beeps tracking my heart. She looked over at the EMT, “Is it too soon to give her another dose?”

“Yes, we need to wait a little while,” he answered.

“Glimpse, what’s wrong, Honey? Are you in pain?”

“I should’ve known,” I whispered to myself, as I shifted under the tight bindings, hoping to find someway to slip out of them. “You can’t trust anyone; so many mistakes today. I should be committed for being an idiot.” I growled, struggling harder. The bindings brushed against my wounded arm, and I yelped softly, my body ceasing all its futile struggles.

I bit my lip, and jammed my eyes shut, my knuckles turning white. It took me a moment to regain some composure, and finally I opened my eyes to find the EMT loosening one of the bindings to pull out my injured arm to make sure I hadn’t caused more damage.

Officer Sidle stood up, and set my accessories on the bench before she came to my side. With both of them so close, I felt a plan starting to form. I closed my eyes again, gritting my teeth as I searched inside myself for the energy. I focused mainly on my hands, focusing hard, hoping that I might be able to conjure up a strong enough energy blast that would knock both of them out, or at least stun them long enough to make my escape.

This effort took a lot out of me, and soon, a thick sheen of sweat began to form on my forehead. The ambulance came to a stop, and I figured it was now or never. I focused all my energy again; enough that it threw both of them back, but not before the EMT had managed to drug me again with a syringe.

I worked quickly, using my free arm to loosen the metal buckles enough for me to wiggle out of the straps. I fell to the floor, and scrambled painfully to my feet, putting my wig back on, and grabbing my gloves and jacket. I yanked the half drained syringe out of my arm, and tossed it over my shoulder. The door of the ambulance opened, and I shot the driver with an energy bolt, knocking him down on his butt.

I stumbled out of the ambulance, my strength already disappearing, and I tried to put as much distance away from me and that ambulance as possible. I fell to my knees about twenty feet away, my breathing haggard as my arm throbbed at my side. I tugged my gloves on, and then, as carefully as I could, my jacket as well. I looked around wildly, and I realized that I was in a hospital parking lot, and the ambulance was idling in the emergency zone.

This place wasn’t right. There was something about it that didn’t seem like a hospital, despite the glowing neon red cross. I wasn’t sure what it was, but the thought gave me the creeps.

“Glimpse,” Officer Sidle called, and my head snapped up to find that she and the EMT were conscious again, and moving towards me cautiously. I scrambled to my feet, swaying into a car, setting the alarm off. I backed away from them, stumbling into another car.

By now, a team of doctors and nurses came outside, ready to receive a patient that was supposed to be on a stretcher, but I wasn’t going to let them take me alive.

“Glimpse, Honey, its okay. We’re not going to hurt you,” Officer Sidle said, extending her arms out in a we-come-in-peace manner. Backing away, I hoped that I could fight off the medicine for a few more minutes. I stumbled into another car, and fell on my butt. They took this time to move. They rushed towards me, spreading out to surround me, but I wasn’t having that. I hoisted myself back up to my feet, and jumped up.

The first attempt at flight was a failure. The second attempt was better, seeing as I actually stayed up in the air instead of falling back to the earth. I flew up out of their reach. The air was cold the higher I flew, clearing my jumbled thoughts. My arm ached, but the pain kept my grip on consciousness After I scanned the city for a few minutes, I finally found a familiar landmark, Benny’s Hotdog Express, and followed the side walk three blocks, finally landing on my own fire escape. I climbed slowly through my window, collapsing on the floor. I let the drugs take me. I didn’t even have the strength to worry that I had forgotten the vile of my blood the EMT had taken. Mistake number five.

I woke up to my alarm the next morning, and I groaned softly. I clambered to my feet from where I had been laying on the floor, and I stripped out of my costume, and started the painstaking task of putting on my school uniform using only one arm. I brushed through the tangled mess that was my hair, wincing at the tender spot on my head.

I put my glasses on last, and then I unwrapped the gauze that bound my wound. The skin on my arm was swollen, and I hoped silently that it wasn’t infected. I took the case of band aids from the top of my dresser, and took one out, pressing it against my arm, hoping that my sleeve would hide most of the red puffiness.

With one last look in the mirror, I brushed my teeth, threw my backpack down the fire escape, remembering that I had told my mom that I had forgotten it at school, and I headed downstairs.

The apartment was empty, and the note on the counter told me that this was because my parents had a pastry emergency to take care of. Whatever that meant. They were going to be out of town all day, and I was to take good care of myself while they were gone.

I sighed and choked down a pop tart before I headed downstairs. I grabbed my backpack from the fire escape, and made the twelve blocks to my school. The walk took longer than usual because of my exhaustion, so I was almost late to my first hour music class.

I grabbed my cello with both hands, hefting it tiredly to my seat before I plopped down, balancing the huge instrument between my thighs.

“Good morning class,” Mr. Sidle sang, “I have a surprise today. My daughter Sarah has decided to come visit us. She was my best violinist.”

“Please dad,” Sarah complained, and I gasped quietly when I realized that Sarah Sidle was actually Officer Sidle. “I hated that instrument with a passion. I couldn’t play worth a darn.”

Mr. Sidle smiled ruefully, and gave her a hug, “Its funny how memories become confused with old age.”

Officer Sidle chuckled, “I’m sorry to intrude, but I have a friend today who would like to speak with you ladies and gentlemen about instrument hygiene. His name is Stanley West.” She said, gesturing to the same EMT from last night. I shrank back in my chair, hunching over, trying to look as anonymous as I could in the front row.

Stanly was dressed in a business casual of pressed kakis, a light blue polo, and brown shoes. He wore a pair of rubber gloves on his hands. He smiled and looked around the classroom, and then walked over to a bassoonist, “How often would you say you clean that thing?”

He asked the same of every person, moving his way down the front row until he came to me.

“A-about once a week,” I replied, hoping my thick glasses, would mask my identity from him. This was the answer that most of the other students gave, so I decided it was safer to lie.

“Don’t lie, Riley. It’s not very becoming of a young lady,” Mr. Sidle called, beaming at me from behind his desk that his daughter was leaning against as she silently surveyed the class. “I see you clean that cello everyday. She’s a natural born cellist; a real protégée.” Mr. Sidle bragged, and I wish he would stop. Sarah was already staring at me suspiciously. I knew that she noticed that my name began with an ‘RI’ the same Glimpse had mistakenly said when they had asked her what her name was in the ambulance.

The telephone rang, and Mr. Sidle jumped up to get it, “Riley, why don’t you play something for us?”

I bit my lip, my cheeks flushing a bright pink. With a gentle prod, I picked up my bow, and started to play. I played half-heartedly through a piece that I had been writing. Mr. Sidle whispered into the phone, smiling approvingly at me. Officer Sidle watched my movements like a hawk as she listened, and I was vaguely aware of Stanley’s presence behind me.

Sweat dewed on my forehead as I brought my piece to a close, my arm aching from overuse. Mr. Sidle clapped wildly over the unenthusiastic claps of my peers. “Wonderful, Dear, but now I must let you go.”

I stared at him quizzically.

“You have an orthodontist’s appointment,” he said, and I stood up uneasily, carrying my cello to its designated spot, and carefully put it in its case along with the bow ignoring a snide comment from Janet Kingly about how my teeth were long-past due for braces.

I bit my lip as I waited for the worksheets Mr. Sidle was thumbing through. Sarah appraised me with careful eyes, and gave me an almost convincing smile, “You play beautifully. I wish I had the talent to be a musician, but unfortunately, my gift is more in busting criminals.”

“Thank you,” I replied softly just before Stanley bumped into my bad arm. I could tell it was on purpose. I nearly bit my lip off from the pain, and I was sure my face had gone a ghost white as I fought the urge to clutch my arm.

“Sorry,” he murmured.

“Careful,” Mr. Sidle scolded, handing me my worksheets, “I am nothing without my favorite cellist. Have a good day, Riley. Say hello to your parents for me.”

I nodded, because I didn’t trust my voice, and made my way quickly out of the room. If they didn’t know before, my reaction about my arm definitely told them I was the girl they had been nondescriptly looking for. I stopped at my locker, thankful that it was out of their sight, and I grabbed my backpack, stuffing the worksheets in it before I slammed my locker shut. When I turned to head towards the office, Sarah was leaning against the wall, toying with her gun, and Stanley was standing next to her with his arms across his chest.

I swallowed hard, and gave them a weak smile.

“Its amazing how you can live two lives,” Sarah said, looking at me, “Especially how things went for you last night.”

“Pardon? I’m not sure what you’re talking about.”

Stanley chuckled at my lame response, digging around in his bag and producing a preloaded syringe. I faltered a step back. “Oh, I think you do,” Sarah replied.

“How’s you arm?” Stanley asked.

I bit my lip, wondering if I could outrun both of them. I obviously couldn’t use my powers at school. They had cameras everywhere. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” I replied, this time less convincingly, and Sarah grinned, because she knew my calm façade was cracking.

“It was truly amazing how you fought all of us off, and made it all the way home, even after being drugged. How ever did you do it?” She asked, taking a lazy half step towards me.

“I have to go,” I said, backing away slowly.

“Don’t go, we have so much to talk about.” Stanley called with a tiny smile, holding up the syringe mockingly in his gloved hand.

I whipped around, ready to bolt, but my face met someone’s chest, and when I looked up, it was Andrew.

“Hello, Beautiful.” He said, and for a brief millisecond, I thought he might be working with them, but then he said, “Ready to go to your orthodontist’s appointment?” I relaxed slightly.

“Isn’t mom supposed to pick me up?” I asked, playing along. I was slightly peeved that he called me out of class for a fake appointment so he could begin his blackmailing, but I was also slightly thankful, because now, Sarah and Stanley didn’t have a chance of taking me with them.

“She had business to take care of. So I offered to take you.”

“How sweet, you didn’t have to do that.”

“What are cousins for?” He asked with a smile, and then he looked at Sarah and Stanley curiously, “Friends of yours?”

“Um. This is Sarah Sidle, Mr. Sidle’s daughter, and this is Stanley West, they came in to talk to our class about hygiene.”

“How nice. Well…I’d like to stay and chat, but if we don’t head out now, you’ll be late.” Andrew said, putting an arm around my shoulders, and steering me in the other direction.

I glanced back, my stomach twisting when I saw that Sarah had her gun pointed at Andrew’s back. I relaxed slightly when her lips moved to imitate the sound of a gun firing, instead of actually shooting him like I thought she was going to do. She blew imaginary smoke from the barrel of her gun, and she holstered it, giving me a tiny wave that said this-isn’t-over.

“So…” Andrew said, lounging on a rickety looking lawn chair, with his arms behind his head, and his legs crossed at his ankles.

“So?” I asked, looking up from where I had been pacing on his roof. I was still anxious from my encounter with Stanley and Officer Sidle, even though I had had ten minutes in the cab, and another minute and a half to walk up the fire escape on Andrew’s apartment building to collect my head.

“Tell me a little about yourself,” He said, pointing his camera at me with a wicked smile.

“What do you want to know?” I hissed a little annoyed when he started snapping random pictures of me.

“Everything,” he said and then sobered up slightly, when he saw my, well-ask-me-something-you-idiot look. “Okay, so your name, Glimpse, how the heck did you come up with that?”

I pursed my lips, deliberating as I stared at his camera, wanting to throw the insidious contraption off of the roof, “I actually wasn’t the one to come up with it. I had just started crime fighting, and everyone was wondering what was happening when bad guys started mysteriously showing up unconscious at the police station. They all wanted a ‘glimpse’ of this so called vigilante, because I only worked under the cover of darkness. Finally the press decided that Glimpse was the perfect name for me, because there were only a few rare times that I was actually seen by the public.”

Andrew scrutinized my face seriously, searching for any lie that might be shown on my face, and then he relaxed when he saw none, “That’s kind of lame. You didn’t even get to pick your name?”

I made a face at the word ‘lame’ which made him smile.

“So what’s with the pink hair?”

“Why, don’t you like it?” I teased.

“Not particularly.”

“Well neither do I honestly. It was just part of an old Halloween costume that I added to my Glimpse costume, to make me look less like Riley. I was going to change it, but people only know me by my pink hair, so I guess it just stuck.”

“Okay, so powers, where did you get them?”

I bit my lip, “Would you believe me if I said an ad in a comic book?”


I sighed, “Well, I’m not really sure. I got them back when I was fourteen, but I didn’t get them from toxic waste, or a magical injection. I just sort of woke up one day with them. It really freaked me out at first. I nearly blew up the whole chemistry lab one day with an energy ball that came from my hands…but I learned to control them eventually.”

Andrew groaned, “You are soooo boring!!!! Your origin story sounds like a comic book writer gone lazy. Oh, I can’t think up an origin for this girl, so I’m just going to have her wake up with powers. Okay, so spill, what all can you do?”

“Well, I’ve got superhuman durability-“

“-That’s what lame superheroes have who don’t have powers. OH! I’m durable, only three of my bones will break when you throw me through that brick wall!” Andrew said, doing a bad imitation of my voice. I rolled my eyes, “What else?”

“Well, I have energy that shoots out of my hands.”

“Yeah right, like that’ll do any damage,” he replied, grinning mockingly at me.

“You’d be surprised,” I snapped, and just to get payback for him calling me lame, I shot the chair out from under him, and he fell hard, the fabric on his lawn chair disintegrating.

“Okay,” he said, picking himself off of the ground, dusting his butt off, and looking back at the ruined remains of his chair, “Granted, that was kind of cool, but is it lethal?”

“I blew half of Black Wrath’s face off a year ago. That’s when he started wearing that black mask that hides most of his face.”

Andrew nodded thoughtfully, and sat down on an old crate, “Anything else?”

“I an omni-linguist.”

“Now you’re just making stuff up.”

“No. That is one of my powers, and it actually comes in handy.”

“What, so you have the ability to order takeout in Chinese,” he taunted.

“You’d be surprised how knowing multiple languages just by being around someone can come in handy. Do you know how many cab drivers don’t speak fluent English?”

“Congratulations you’ve just hit super lame. Please tall me you’ve got something better than that.”

“I can fly.”

“No way,” he said, a smile tugging at the corner of his mouth.


Andrew smiled, “Well, I guess that makes up for your general lameness, so we’ll be moving on to super villains. I believe I’ve heard of this Black Wrath guy, but no one seems to know much about him. What’s his story?”

“Well, I’m not really sure where he came from. He seemed to just show up one day. He’s a guy with powers too. He can manipulate shadows in a way that lets him travel, kind of like a slower form of teleportation. Anyways, he started out small, taking on jewelry stores, robbing them blind, and never getting caught. Somewhere along the line, a man who calls himself Red-Pseudo joined up with him.

“He had heard of Black Wrath from some other scumbags, and he was interested in the man who robbed twenty banks in fourteen different states in the same day. Now, Red-Pseudo is Black Wrath’s go-to guy, he’s a sharp shooter, carrying only five bullets on him, because he rarely misses. I’m not sure, but I assume he has superhuman durability, because I’ve gotten him several times with my energy bolt, and he just keeps getting back up.

“He’s also got superhuman agility; a regular Tarzan. He’s the one that rounded up all those henchmen, and evil scientists for Black Wrath. With him, Black Wrath rarely leaves their secret lair, or whatever you want to call it. They bring the jewels to him, and he lets them live.

“But I never count him out of a fight when I’m in the picture. He’s determined to one day learn my secret identity, and then kill me off. You know, normal comic-book super villain mentality.”

“And, what is he like, you know, personality wise?” Andrew asked.

“Oh, he’s really chivalrous. Always the gentlemen, asking me how I am and all that while he’s trying to kill me,” I chuckled. Black Wrath was hilarious to think about when I was safely away from him, “But he likes to rant a lot. You can tell Red-Pseudo gets tired of his excessive excitement, and his firm grip on stating the obvious.”

“So, do you think he’s gone soft, now that he doesn’t do much?”

“Not really. He had never lost the capacity to kill innocents, or his own men. One time, I was caught in one of his traps and a henchman made him mad about something. He had Red-Pseudo bring the henchman to him, and Black Wrath used his shadow manipulation to create a solid mass inside the henchman’s body. He expanded it, and the henchman exploded.” I replied, making a face at that disturbing memory.

“Do you get trapped often then?” Andrew chuckled.

“Only when I want to keep things interesting,” I replied with narrowed eyes. That was a lie. I got trapped a lot, more so than I should, but ten henchmen plus Red-Pseudo, against one of me was hardly a fair fight.

I left sometime after that, because Andrew had no more questions for me at the present time, and it was already two thirty. My parents would be expecting me home in five minutes.

My life continued on like that for a month. I was at school, or minding my own business elsewhere, and then Andrew would pop up out of nowhere, and drag me off so I could tell him about other bad guys I had caught, how many costumes I had, and if I had met any other super powered people. He wanted to know if I had ever fought anyone in a different country, and when I said that I had on our family vacation to Tokyo, he wanted to know how the sushi was over there.

His questions seemed without end, always random, and always with a sarcastic response, or a ‘that’s lame’ when I answered him. I thought that perhaps I had rid myself from him when I didn’t hear from him within a three day time period, but I had been mistaken.

He found me when I was working out in the gym three blocks from my house. This was a ritual of mine. I worked out at least twice a week, for as long as I could handle, building myself up to be stronger and faster so that I could take on the bad guys by myself when they outnumbered me.

I was on the treadmill, doing something faster than an average run, but not quite a sprint, a light sheen of sweat on my forehead, dampening my hair in its loose ponytail. I sighed when I saw him, and ripped the ear buds out of my ears, turning my ipod off.

“750 calories burned, I’m impressed,” he said, glancing at the screen as he leaned against the machine. “What’d you do, eat a Big Mac and then decide to work it off?”

I rolled my eyes, “I’m a vegetarian, idiot.”

“Really?” He smiled, “Is that why your mom never cooks with meat when I come over?”

“Dad hates me for it, but I don’t believe that slaughtering animals is necessary when we have soy products and protein supplements out there nowadays.”

“I can respect that,” He replied, slightly bemused, scrutinizing me in a way that made me blush, although I’m sure it didn’t matter since my face was red from being hot for him to notice, “Do you always work out like this, or are you just trying to show off.”

“We can’t talk about my secret here if that’s what you’re wanting,” I said, ignoring his question, but I think I said too much. The blonde on the elliptical faltered slightly in her workout, listening hard just in case I might divulge some juicy gossip.

“I’m actually not here for you,” he answered, looking pointedly at his gym bag, and towel. This was the first time I noticed that he too was already covered in sweat. “I got done working out, and I was ready to leave when I saw you come in. I hid, and decided to watch you for a while.”

“Andrew, I’ve been here for an hour,” I said, slowing the pace on the treadmill down. I had almost fallen off.

Andrew chuckled, and inclined his head towards me, “You are a very interesting person, Riley. I can’t seem to stay away from you.”

I blushed, my heart fluttering slightly.

“But I wouldn’t mind just talking about Riley, minus the secret side, if you aren’t to busy.”

“Pull up a treadmill,” I answered, and he grinned, stepping on the vacant treadmill beside me. I slowed my pace to a fast walk.

“So, what are your interests?”

“I like to play the Cello. We like isn’t really the right word, and love is definitely not strong enough. I’d say I’m obsessed with it. I think I’d die if I could never play again. So what about you?”

“Nope. I’m the blackmailer remember.”

“Come on, you have to give me something.”

Andrew chuckled, “Fine. You already know that I love taking pictures. I’m not what sure what else you want. I eat, sleep, and breathe photography. I live alone in a studio apartment. I work for a newspaper part time, while the other half of my time is spent taking portraits of people for their anniversaries, weddings, and any other gig I get called to do. Your turn. Do you have a boyfriend?”

That question caught me off guard, and I almost fell again. “Who wants to know?”

“Don’t be so suspicious, I’m just curious. I mean you practically work yourself like a slave all day, and all night. I don’t know when you’d have the time to sleep let alone make out with a local boy.”

“I don’t date. It just never works out.”

“That’s what girls say when they’ve never been asked out before,” he replied with a taunting smile.

“Fine. I’ve never been asked out before. I’ve never kissed a boy. I’m a lonely nerdy girl who goes to an all girl private school, so meeting the opposite sex is kind of difficult unless one goes searching for them.”

Andrew pursed his lips thoughtfully, and shut his treadmill down, stepping off before it stopped.

“What are you done already?” I asked.

“I’ve ran out of questions, but I’ll get back to you on that,” He replied. Andrew winked at me, and walked away, throwing a ‘see ya kid’ over his shoulder.

“Nothing fancy, Cally,” I said, brushing the bangs on my wig out of my eyes, “I just want something different, to you know, keep things interesting.”

“Glimpse, Baby, you come here asking me to make you a new costume, and then you tell me nothing fancy? Its like you don’t know me at all,” Cally replied with a chuckle, swiveling in her computer chair to face me with a wide blue-lipped grin. She got up, and tossed her scarf over her shoulder, walking through the curtain to her back work station, beckoning me to follow her with a finger.

As usual, Cally was dressed to make a statement. Maybe it was the fishnet body suit, with the tight leather shorts stretched over them, or the strapless sweetheart style top with bleeding purple hearts, or her thigh high purple boots, with matching sleeveless raincoat that screamed that this was a place for people like me. I couldn’t see my mother or any of the girls in my class coming to a place like this without being gagged, bound and blind folded, and literally drug in.

I noticed that she had changed her hair too. Instead of the playful purple fauxhawk that she usually sported, her hair was longer, cut in a severe a-line bob that wrapped seductively around her high cheek bones. It was dyed with more colors than I could count, in a peacock feather motif.

“You say you want something different, but you still haven’t ditched that pink hair of yours.” She commented, taking a playful bat at one of my pigtails.

“I thought you liked it.”

“Yeah, two years ago, but now, it seems…”

“Does it look bad?”

“Hardly. I think it’s just a bit overused. Have you ever considered going blue?”


“Yeah, I think you’d look great in blue hair,” she replied, unhooking her measuring tap from her belt loops, and measuring my waist. “So do you have any requests for a design, or do I get free reign?”

“Do whatever you want,” I answered, “But remember, I have to fight in it.”

“Please. I’ll make you so drop-dead gorgeous that they won’t even know what hit ‘em.”

Cally wedged a pin between her lipstick coated lips, as her lucky charm, and set to work, taking the rest of my measurements, murmuring almost incoherent questions around the pin, about my choice on halters, sweethearts, or v-necks. She wanted to know if strapless was an option, and then what colors I preferred. I picked the top two that came to mind, which happened to be red and white, and she nodded, murmuring about how I was so predictable.

Cally had me pick out a pair of shoes from her handmade selection sitting proudly on a shelf, and once I pointed out the ankle high zip up boots with the half inch heel, and black lace design, she set to work designing my costume, cutting out patterns from white and red fabric, and then dove into sewing. I sat back and watched her.

It was soothing, watching her mocha colored fingers with all those rings working the fabrics together nimbly. I imagined instead that she was holding a cello, or plucking at the keys of a piano. With those magic fingers of hers, there was no doubt she could play any instrument without difficulty.

It was a Monday, but I wasn’t skipping school. It was supposed to be president’s day, or something along those lines, so we didn’t have school. My parents had gone out to dinner, just the two of them, leaving me alone in an empty apartment. Even Andrew had been too busy, so that’s when I decided to go see Cally. It had been too long since we had seen each other last, and I really adored her, even though I wasn’t ready to tell her about the Riley side of my life.

I saved her once from a mugger, just a few blocks from her shop, and ever since she saw me in my wig, and regular clothes, she decided that she was going to be my official tailor, and she’s been making my costumes ever since.


“What? Already? That was fast.”

“You said nothing fancy. I made something simple, but still smoking hot. It’s truly a masterpiece if I do say so myself. Go on, try it on. I’ll be upfront pretending that I’m working.”

I stripped out of my old costume eagerly, and attacked the one she had just made, putting each layer on as quickly as I could. The first layer was a pair of red fishnet stockings, and I hopped around on one foot for a minute, trying to get my foot in its designated hole. The second was a white halter topped body suit that cut off at mid thigh. On top of the body suit was a strapless sweetheart style red swim suit.

I zipped up my boots, and pulled my gloves on, straightening my wig as I grinned at my reflection in the full length mirror. I ducked through the curtain, back through the front of the store, and did a quick how-do-I-look twirl for Cally.

“I am so good,” she chuckled, fastening one white and one red ribbon in the pigtails of my wig. “And now, you’re perfect.”

“So how much do I owe you?”

“Naw, Girl, this one’s on the house.”

“Cally, I can’t-“

“-You can and you will. Consider it as token of my appreciation to my most valued costumer,” She replied. Then she cocked her head, distracted. I listened too, and I heard the distant sirens a few seconds after she did. “Not too soon it seems.”

I sighed, and gave her a disparaging smile, “Duty calls. Is it okay if I pick up my old costume later?”

“Say no more. My shop is yours. Now go kick some butt.”

I thanked her, and then flew out the open door of her shop, with a running start. I followed the sounds of the sirens, expecting to see a black wall of smoke billowing up from a burning building, or maybe a bank in the process of being robbed, but no, it wasn’t either of those.

I saw Black Wrath’s henchmen carrying large canvases, ancient sculptures, and prized masterpieces from The Victoria Price museum. I landed a few feet away, not knowing what to make of this scene. Then I saw Black Wrath. He was sitting in a director style chair with his legs crossed, watching the chaos ensue with an expectant grin on his face as his henchmen carried out his bidding.

“What do you think your doing?!” I demanded, walking up to him.

“Oh, Glimpse, what a pleasure, I hoped you would make it. I do say, you look marvelous, Dear, you’ll have to tell me who your tailor is!”

“Why on earth are you robbing a museum? Aren’t you rich enough by now? Or did you figure you needed a part in the black market too?”

Black Wrath chuckled in delight, “My sweet girl, I would never entrust such beautiful works to common criminals to make a quick buck. No, no. I merely decided that my house is looking rather stoic, and I thought I might spruce it up with some art. I am too much of an art lover, really. I would die if anything bad were to happen to these works. I told my henchmen to be extra careful too, so you needn’t worry your pretty little head.”

“Yeah, because your henchmen are being real gentle,” I replied dryly, pointing at one of the henchmen who stepped on an abandoned canvas painting as he helped another heft a large sculpture down the steps, and load it into one of the many black vans idling on the curb.

Black Wrath scowled at the henchman, disappearing in a cloud of smoke, and reappearing beside the henchman who had stepped on the painting. Before the henchman could explain, Black Wrath yanked the man’s head backward by his hair, sliding the sharp blade of his knife against the man’s neck.

Even from where I was standing, fifteen feet away, I could see the blood rush like a waterfall from the henchman’s jugular before Black Wrath let his body fall in a crumpled mass on the white concrete. His henchmen froze all eyes on their master; wide fearful eyes.

“Any more insolence will be the result in your demise. I expect my art to be in the same condition as it was before you took it from the museum,” he growled. His body disappeared, and reappeared, sitting in his chair as if he had never moved in the first place. He turned to me with a what-can-you-do shrug, cleaning the blood off of his knife pleasantly, “Might I interest you in a Da Vinci, or perhaps a Monet in return for letting this little robbery go unpunished?”

“I think not.”

Black Wrath sighed, shaking his head with a pitying smile, “I tried.” He pressed a button on his chair, and something flew passed my head in a blurring speed, before making a small hole in the side of one of his vans. “I’d rather you accepted my offer, but I suppose Red-Pseudo will be just as pleased to have you stuffed and mounted.”

Another bullet whizzed passed my head, missing me by a half inch. I stared up at the rooftop of the museum, to find that Red-Pseudo was perched up there, his gun trained on me. He fired three more shots, flipping the empty clip out and replacing it with a new one, with a blinding speed as I flew up to get him, barely dodging his well placed bullets.

Red-Pseudo flipped acrobatically out of the way when I shot an energy beam towards him. I knocked his gun out of his hand with another energy beam, tossing an energy bomb for good measure. It blew up, knocking him off of the roof, but this did not unnerve him. He fell with a grace that made me stop and watch. In a fall that should’ve killed him, Red-Pseudo landed effortlessly on his feet, like a cat, and called to the henchmen for help as he ran towards Black Wrath, who had his spare gun.

A henchman managed to shoot me with a dart while I was flying after Red-Pseudo. It caught me in the arm, and I faltered slightly in my flight for a moment, but then leveled off, yanking the pointy metal tip from my arm. My arm throbbed, but I really didn’t see the point of the dart. It didn’t do anything to me.

I took that henchman out first, and then started to pick the others off, at least two at a time, because most of them were too busy carrying things to stop and pull out their weapons to disable me. When I took them out, I landed a few feet away from Black Wrath and Red-Pseudo, cautiously, wondering why they weren’t attacking me.

“I don’t understand,” Black Wrath complained sitting with a frustrated expression, his eyes locked on me, “Why didn’t the dart work? She should’ve been comatose by now.”

“I can shoot her if that makes you feel better,” Red-Pseudo said, picking up his gun with an expectant grin.

“No. No. I know when I am defeated. I am more troubled that my scientists told me that dart would work, and then it didn’t, rather than at the fact that I’m not going to get to take any of my art home.”

“Um, I hate to interrupt you ladies, but I think this is the part where you either attack me, or surrender.” I said.

Black Wrath sighed, “Never mind that. We will not be doing either. Another day perhaps.” Red-Pseudo grabbed Black Wrath’s shoulder, and they vanished into thin air.

I sighed, and glanced around, rubbing my arm as I surveyed the mess of unconscious henchmen. The police were there by now, taking people into custody, so I decided to split before one of them came up with the bright idea of trying to arrest me.

My arm was swollen when I woke up the next morning, and I had a migraine so painful that it was as if I had lain down in the middle of the road, and let every taxi in the city run over it. I drug myself out of bed, and slowly forced myself to put on my itchy uniform, while a part of me tried to convince myself to stay home.

I made my way down stairs after half heartedly brushing my teeth and hair, with my backpack weighing me down. I plopped my backpack down beside the door, and rummage through the kitchen, becoming easily frustrated when I couldn’t find the Tylenol.

“Mom,” I called, and winced.

“Yeah?” She asked, walking out of her bedroom with her coat and car keys in her hand.

“Where’d you put the Tylenol at?”

“Oh, sorry, I’ve got it,” she said, disappearing for a moment back into her room, and then she reappeared, handing me the bottle. I struggled with the cap, and she took it from me, unscrewing the lid, handing me two pills, and then setting the bottle in the cabinet over my head, “Are you sure you don’t want to stay home? You look like you could be getting a cold.”

She felt my forehead as I popped the pills in my mouth. My skin was warm, but not feverish, so I shook my head, which made me slightly dizzy, “If I start feeling worse, I’ll go to the nurse’s office.”

“Well, your father and I are going away for the day, so you won’t be able to come home early.”

“That’s okay, I’ll be fine,” I replied, and picked up my book bag before making my way slowly down the stairs inside their café, and then outside.

My school was close enough that I walked everyday, and made it with enough time to study before class, but today, I knew I was going to be late. I heard the minute warning bell when I was still a block away, so I started to sprint.

I could hear my heart pulsing in my temples, trying to ignore the stabbing in my brain as I continued to run. I made it to the front of the school before I had to stop. I dropped my book bag from my shoulders, my hands on my knees as I tried to catch my breath.

Sweat dewed on my forehead, and my skin felt slick and clammy. My arm throbbed with a blazing heat that seemed to spread to the rest of my body. I stared at the ground, my vision coming and going from how it should be, to a hazy blur of colors that made my stomach cLynchnauseously.

I felt my body sway forward, but I didn’t have time to react. I was already on the ground. I could remember thinking that the cold concrete felt good against my skin. I could remember the feeling going out of my body, and then…nothing.

I blinked against the bright light overhead, my nose wrinkling at the sterile chemical smell that choked the closet sized room. My eyes wandered tiredly, resting on the cotton swabs in the glass jar, the collection of band aids sitting on the counter, and then back to the ceiling.

“I think she’s coming around,” an elderly voice whispered, and a wrinkled face appeared above mine. I stared at her thin lips, the wild grey curls, and the inch thick glasses that magnified her huge hazel eyes. After a few moments, I recognized her as the school nurse, and concluded that I must be in her office.

“Riley,” a new voice called, and it was Andrew. He was clean cut, and clean shaven, looking remarkably handsome for a devious blackmailer. I stared at them both blankly, my thoughts a jumble of fever-induced nonsense. I barely understood what was coming out of their mouths. Why is he here?

“H-how…?” I started, and then stopped, trying to remember what I was asking. “How did I get here?”

The nurse smiled. “You fainted, dear. Lucky for you, this young man found you, and carried you all the way here by himself,” She said, and beamed at Andrew as if he were her own personal hero now. He gave her a sheepish grin in return, and brushed my bangs out of my face.

“Should we get something for her fever? She seems hotter now than what she did a few minutes ago.”

The nurse pulled a thermometer from a drawer, and stuck it under my tongue. A few short moments passed, and the thermometer beeped quietly, and she took it back out of my mouth, dumping the plastic covering in the trash before examining it. “Oh dear. That can’t possibly be good.”

“What?” Andrew asked, impatiently.

“Well her temperature was at 104 degrees, but now it’s at 106 degrees,” she replied, and busied herself with wetting a washcloth. I heard the water running, clanging in the metal sink. I shivered violently under the covers.

The nurse hurried over to my side and wiped the sweat off of my face with the washcloth, before folding it up and placing it on my forehead. By now, my teeth were chattering, and it my body felt like it was in the middle of an earthquake as cold chills ran up and down my spine.

“How long until they get here?”

“It shouldn’t be long, now. I think I hear the sirens already,” she replied, “Wait what do you think you’re doing?!” She demanded when Andrew peeled back the thick blanket that had been covering my trembling body. His hands slid gently under me, and picked me up off of the sweat drenched bed. I groaned in pain, my body aching all over. The nurse’s hands hovered just below his, in case he might drop me, but I doubted that she’d be able to catch me if he did.

“I’m going to meet the ambulance at the door,” he replied, heading out the door. The nurse hurried back to her little freezer, and filled a couple of zip-lock baggies with ice, sealing them before she jogged after us in her white shoes.

The EMT was already making his way towards us, rolling a gurney, with a backpack slung over his shoulder. I caught a glimpse of my own reflection in the glass trophy case before Andrew laid me down on the gurney. My brown hair was a mat of sweat drenched curls, my skin was a ghost white, and there were huge dark circles around both of my eyes making me look like a hybrid between the living dead, and a rabid raccoon.

They threw a thin itchy blanket over me, and I was pinned to the gurney with the straps before they hoisted me up into the back of the ambulance. The nurse handed the EMT the bags of ice, and she stepped back, giving me a wave, and I gave her a tiny smile in return.

The door slammed shut, and the ambulance sped off, its sirens blaring in an annoyingly high pitched soprano. Andrew sat down in the little space passengers were designated, and the EMT placed the bags of ice against my skin, making me shiver even harder. He groped under the blanket until he found my arm, and he brought it out, wiping the crook of my arm with an alcohol pad before sliding a needle connected to an IV into my arm.

He taped the needle into place, and dabbed my forehead with a wet sponge. I stared at him tiredly, watching him work. It was only when I was almost on the verge of unconsciousness, that I realized that this EMT was Stanley; Officer Sidle’s Stanley; one of my captors.

If I felt terrible earlier, I felt just down right crappy when I woke up in the white hospital bed with a needle jammed into my hand, and tubes taped on my nose. I glanced around as much as I could without moving my head, and my heart leapt into a sprint when I saw that I was alone in a room with my two former captors.

Officer Sidle was sitting in a chair reading a magazine, and Stanley had been studying the clipboard at the end of my bed, until they heard the quick loud beeps on the machine that was monitoring my heart. I stared at them fearfully through my bloodshot burning eyes, my nails digging into the mattress.

“Finally,” Stanley said, setting the clipboard down. “You’re awake. Now, can you tell me what made you sick?”

I stared at him incredulously, my eyes darting to Officer Sidle, and then back to him, “W-where’s Andrew?”

“Relax, Honey, we’re not going to hurt you,” Officer Sidle said, touching my white knuckles, “Andrew went to go get some coffee, so we offered to stay here just in case you woke up.”

“Riley, what made you sick?” Stanley asked, his tone more assertive, making me flinch. He sighed, “Look, you may not trust us, but we only have your best interest at heart. The doctors have no clue what’s wrong with you, and I have a feeling you do.”

I nodded stiffly, biting back a moan at the dull ache this caused all across my body. I licked my cracked lips, “One of Black Wrath’s henchman shot me with a dart that they thought would immediately incapacitate me. But I kicked their butts after I yanked it out, and they went running away with their tail between their legs. I didn’t start feeling sick until this morning, when I got a really bad migraine.”

Stanley studied me for a moment with his hand on his chin thoughtfully, “Are you sure you got all of it out.”

“No, I think a piece broke off while it was still in.”

“Where’d they get you?”

“My arm,” I said, brushing my hand on my other arm that lay throbbing on the bed.

“May I?”

I stared at him for a moment, biting my lip, and then I nodded hesitantly, and he gently rolled up the sleeve of my paper gown. The place where the dart had hit me was a black mass of bruised flesh; the center a flaming crimson.

“I think you do have a piece still in there, but it’s hard to tell, if only I had a magnifying glass.”

“Where are my glasses?” I asked, and Officer Sidle handed it to me, trying not to look at my bad arm. I handed Stanley my glasses, “It probably won’t work as good, but the prescription on those would be strong enough to see an atom.”

Stanley chuckled, “You don’t need these do you?”

I shook my head stiffly, “Just another prop.”

Stanley sighed after a moment of examining my arm, and left the room, returning with a basin, a scalpel, some gauze, and a pair of tweezers.

“Wait, are you qualified to do what I think you’re going to do?” Sarah asked, shielding her eyes.

“I’m qualified…but I’ll get fired if I get caught,” he replied with an amused smile, and then he looked at me seriously, “You might want to look the other way. This might hurt a little.”

I nodded, and jammed my eyes shut, turning my face towards Officer Sidle. The initial bite of the needle sent my heart into a momentary frenzy. Stanley paused, and I could feel his eyes on my face as I hissed through the pain. When my heart had slowed again, he made another cut. I felt something sharp prodding around in my skin, and finally, I guess he found what he was looking for, because I heard a soft clinking noise in the basin.

I let out a slow shaky breath and looked back when I felt him bandaging my arm back up. I looked in the basin when Stanley turned his attension to it, and I saw a shiny metal barbed ball, about half the size of a dime, and when he prodded it with his tweezers, the ball secreted a green liquid that sizzled menacingly.

“That must’ve been it,” he murmured, rolling my sleeve back down, “That dart must’ve been pointy at first, but once it gets into flesh, it bulbs out, and secretes that poison when it gets disturbed.”

“Henchmen don’t fight fair,” I replied.

Stanley gave me a crooked grin, his head cocked to the side as if he were listening to something, “Don’t take this the wrong way, but you have a remarkable heart.”

“Pardon” I asked, confused. My eyelids were starting to droop again, and I felt lightheaded.

“Your heart. You must be in very good shape. I normally only hear slow heart rates like that in people who run marathons like they’re eveningg jogs. I was counting earlier, and I think I only heard about forty beats per minute.”

“She better be that fit,” Andrew called, and I jolted in surprise, because he was practically standing right next to me, and I hadn’t even noticed him, “The girl works herself like a slave in the gym. You should watch her some day.”

I rolled my eyes, and my doctor walked in, checked my vitals, and diagnosed my condition as twenty four hour flu. No one told him otherwise.

I was discharged, and left alone to change. It was harder than what I expected. I was still weak, and dressing was a painstaking task, especially now that I was really babying my bad arm. I stuffed my pantyhose in my pocket instead of trying to put them on, and then slipped my shoes on. I heard a knock on the door, and they returned, Stanley pushing an old red wheelchair.

I frowned, “I can walk.”

“It’s hospital policy.”

I rolled my eyes, and sank down in the wheelchair, with a frown the whole ride, which actually was only about a minute long, but still agonizingly embarrassing at the same time.

Stanley released me, and I started walking dizzily towards Andrew’s car that was parked illegally in a handicapped zone. I wondered idly how he had gotten it here, but I didn’t ask, I was focusing too hard on putting one foot in front of the other. I got about ten feet before I began to sway on my feet, and another two feet before I actually collapsed.

Thankfully, Andrew was close enough to catch me be for I fell on my face. The others rushed to my side, and it took a moment of me saying I was fine for all of them to calm down, “I just got a little dizzy, that’s all.”

“We’re coming with you. That doctor didn’t know the whole story behind your illness, and I think it would be wise if you had a person with medical skills around just in case.” Stanley said, opening the passenger door on Andrew’s car so that Andrew could set me down.

“Do you mind if I lean this seat back, I’m afraid she’s going to faint again and hurt herself,” Andrew whispered softly to Sarah when she climbed in behind me.

“I don’t mind,” She replied, and he laid the seat back so that my head was practically in her lap. Andrew buckled me in, and walked around the front of his car, and sat down in the driver’s seat. It took about three turns of the engine, but finally the old Buick came back to life, coughing and hiccupping as Andrew pulled slowly out of the parking lot.

“This is great,” I said sarcastically, mostly just talking to myself, “Its bad enough they know my secret identity, now they have to find out where I live?”

Stanley chucked softly, his eyes flicking to my face before he turned back to the window. “We already know where you live.”

“That doesn’t sound creepy at all,” Andrew said. The car was silent after that, and the droning of the radio lulled me into a light sleep. I didn’t wake up again until his car stopped in front of my apartment, and even then, I was still half out of it.

Andrew picked me up again, and my head lulled from side to side as he walked, my limbs hanging limply as he held me in his arms. He made his way slowly up the stairs, and Officer Sidle held the door open for him after she flicked on what seemed to be all the lights in my tiny apartment.

Andrew set me down on the couch, and plopped down in an armchair, breathing hard. I heard Officer Sidle say that she was going to find some blankets, and then she was gone, the stairs barely creaking as she made her way up them quietly.

It wasn’t long after, she returned with a throw blanket that usually sat for show on the foot of my bed, and a few of my pillows that I usually sleep on. I wasn’t sure who, but someone-other than Officer Sidle-lifted my head up so that she could wedge the pillows under my head, before she threw the blanket over me.

I drifted to sleep after that, only to be woken up a few hours later to the door slamming shut.

“Andrew, is there something wrong? Why are you here?” Mom asked, and she was immediately at my side. I kept my eyes shut, mostly because I seemed to have forgotten how to open them.

“Riley is fine now. She collapsed at school. The doctor at the hospital said she had a twenty four hour bug, and she should be fine if she gets plenty of liquids and rest,” he replied tiredly. I think he had been asleep too.

I felt Dad’s meaty hand brush back my sweaty bangs.

“Thank you for taking care of her,” he murmured softly.

“Yes. Oh I feel so awful! Rainbow said she had a headache this morning, and I let her waltz off to school, instead of making her stay home.”

“It’s not your fault; I think it was best that she was at school. At least she wasn’t alone, when she did collapse. This could’ve turned out badly if she had stayed at home, what with you guys not here today,” Andrew replied, “Should I take her up to her room?”

“Oh, you don’t have to do that!” Mom protested.

“It’s really no problem. I carried her this far, I might as well finish the job.”

“Well…if you’re sure it’s not a burden.”

“No, not at all,” he said, and he lifted me up off the couch, cradling me against his chest. I groaned softly in protest. I had been comfortable where I was at. Andrew chuckled softly; too quiet for my parents to hear as they followed him up the stairs.

“Cute,” I heard him murmur mockingly when he reached my room. He walked in slowly, balancing me expertly in one arm while the other threw back the covers. He laid me down gently, and tucked me in.

The next morning, I woke up feeling refreshed, not enough to go out and run a mile, but well enough to go to school, or at least a few if not all my classes. Mom shot that idea down, claiming that I needed a day for R&R before she raced quickly down to the café with a glob of pancake mix on her cheek and her apron on inside out.

I got dressed anyways, knowing that my parents would probably be too busy to come upstairs to check on me. I jogged lightly down to the kitchen, packing my books in my backpack, before I rummaged through the cupboards. There were no poptarts left, so I opted for a rice crispy treat instead, nibbling cautiously on its corner, testing my stomach.

The front door slammed open, scaring me, and I glared at Andrew, who waltzed in like he owned the place, with Officer Sidle, and Stanley hovering awkwardly in the doorway.

“What are you doing here?” I hissed, stuffing another notebook in my backpack that I had missed.

“Babysitting,” he replied, obviously amused as he went and plopped down on the couch.

“Well your services will no longer be required. Look for your termination notice in the mail.”

“Your Mom told me to watch you.”

“I’m going to school, and I’m pretty sure you’ll get kicked off campus if you ‘watch’ me all day.”

“She told me that you’re supposed to be resting.”

I sighed, and ran my hands through my hair, fighting the urge to chuck something at him, “To miss one day is walking on the dangerous side. To miss two days is an academic suicide. So I’m going. Anyways, what Mom doesn’t know won’t hurt her.”

“I hope you don’t go by that motto all the time,” I heard Mom say, right before she peeked around Stanley. I swallowed hard, knowing that I was defeated. Andrew smiled triumphantly. “You are staying home today young lady, and you better not give anyone a hard time. Andrew volunteered to stay with you while your father and I work, and these nice people came all the way from the hospital to make sure you were okay.”

I rolled my eyes and dropped my backpack, stomping to the couch, and plopping down next to Andrew. “Don’t you people have lives?”

“Riley Marie Giovanni! Is that anyway to treat guests? I am so sorry; she’s usually not like this. She only gets cranky when she’s sick.”
Andrew chuckled at that, and I elbowed him in the ribs when mom wasn’t looking. “I have to head back, so I can’t fix you guys anything, but feel free to make yourselves at home,” Mom said, looking around the groups of people, and then her eyes hardened slightly when she looked at me, making me sink deeper into the couch, “Andrew, you have your orders.”
“Yes ma’am,” Andrew chuckled, and saluted mockingly, letting his arm fall so that it was resting on the back of the couch around my shoulders.
Mom cracked a tiny smile, and then she shut the door, leaving me to fend for myself against my blackmailer, and two adults who had way too much interest in my life to be considered healthy.
“So how are you feeling kiddo?” Andrew asked, pinching my cheek.
“Perfectly fine until you showed up,” I growled, swatting his hand away, “Now I think I might have to grind the top layer of my eyes off just so I won’t have to see you face.”

“Because it’s so painstakingly beautiful,” Andrew finished.
I rolled my eyes, and frowned even deeper when Stanley kneeled down to give me a quick, unwelcome check up. Officer Sidle sat awkwardly in the armchair, folding and unfolding her hands in her lap.
“Well, everything seems to be in order,” Stanley said, getting back up to his feet, “I guess we’ll get out of your hair now.”
“Wait, don’t go, its nice to have you guys around. Riley is being so quiet that she’s only really insulted me once. Usually I can never get her to shut up. You guys are miracle workers. Stay please, so she’ll be quiet.”
I rolled my eyes, “That would seem rather unbeneficial when you think about your blackmailing me.”
“Blackmail?” Stanley asked, sounding slightly interested, “What’d you do, catch her sneaking out?”
“Sneaking in actually,” Andrew replied smugly, “Riley and I have a deal. She tells me everything about her life, and I keep the photograph of her secret identity being revealed from hitting the press.”
“That’s harsh,” Officer Sidle said, “You know, blackmailing a person is illegal.”
“Take me in, Officer,” Andrew replied, holding his hands out mockingly, ready to be handcuffed, “But if her secret gets out, I’m not the only one Riley will be coming after.”
I pinched the bridge of my nose, and got up, rummaging through one of the cabinets in the kitchen, grabbing out a bottle of Tylenol. I struggled with the child safety lid for a moment, cursing under my breath in frustration. Finally I got the bottle open, and I plucked to pills out before replacing the lid on the bottle, and putting the bottle back in the cabinet.
I popped the pills in my mouth, and chased them down with a glass of orange juice. Only after I downed the glass, did I realize they were all staring at me with varying degrees of concern. “I’m fine,” I said when they continued to stare; “The idiot just gave me a headache, that’s all.”
“Perhaps you should sit down, your cheeks are all flushed,” Sarah said.
“Much like her personality,” Andrew joked and I slapped him upside the head when I reclaimed my seat.
“I’m actually curious about how you got your powers and all that. Don’t tell me it was a meteor, or a radioactive insect.” Stanley said, leaning on the back of Officer Sidle’s chair.
“Your guess is as good as mine. I woke up one day, and I had powers.”
“Really, when did you begin to crime fight?”
“Andrew,” I sighed, leaning my head on the back of the couch tiredly, closing my eyes, “You know the story better than anyone.”
He chuckled, and he filled them in on my life story, not leaving anything out; not even the agonizingly boring parts.
I must’ve dozed of, because when I opened my eyes again, the sun was lower in the sky, and I guessed it was about five o’clock. I lifted my head from where it had wound up in the crease of Andrew’s shoulder, and I peered around the room tiredly.
Stanley and Officer Sidle were gone, and the lights were out. I looked, and Andrew was watching me with unreadable eyes.
“What?” I demanded.
“How’s your head?”
“Better,” I replied warily.
“Good. Mine is kind of hurting though. You don’t just talk in your sleep, you yell.”
“I do not.”
“As far as you know,” he replied, giving me a crooked grin.
“Fine, then what did you say?”
“Oh Andrew! Oh, Andrew!!! I LOVE YOU!!!!” He said, grabbing my shoulders as he yelled in the worst imitation of my voice I had ever heard.
“You should be committed,” I snapped.
“Only crazy people have fun, Riley. You should try being less sane.”
I rolled my eyes, and that’s when my mom walked in.
“What was all that racket?” She asked, shaking her hair from its messy bun.
“Andrew was telling me a joke,” I answered dryly, “And it was terrible.”
“I hope you didn’t have too much fun today.”
“No, I don’t think she did. She fell asleep a couple of minutes after you went downstairs, and she actually just woke up like a minute ago. Although, I’m not going to lie, I had fun. Have you ever sat there and listened to her talk in her sleep. It’s priceless.”
“I do not talk in my sleep!”
“Yes you do, Honey. You carried on a full conversation with your father last night when we stayed up to make sure you were going to be alright. You told him that you were a superhero, and that you sneak out every night to fight crime. It was the cutest thing I ever heard. It reminded me of when you were younger, and you were convinced that you could fly,” She chuckled, pouring herself a glass of wine.
My face paled, and I sat silently, thankfully Andrew made the save.
He laughed, probably a little too loudly, “Yeah right. Riley, a superhero? That would be like asking Harrison Ford to knit bunny slippers instead of playing Indiana Jones in the movies.”

It was three days before my mom finally let me go back to school, and I didn’t see Andrew at all for a good couple of weeks. I had too much homework to makeup, and he had deadlines to meet, that he had been neglecting.
I got home around the same time as usual on Tuesday, but since mom was sick, dad decided to close up shop for the day, which meant I had about five hours to kill before I had to mess with my homework. I changed out of my school uniform, and I picked my phone and flipped through the contacts list. I called Andrew, and he picked up on the first ring.
“Hello,” he chuckled and I heard a high pitched giggle in the background, and I felt my face flush slightly in irritation. So, he was with a girl.
“Yeah, it’s me, Riley.”
“I was just calling to tell you that if you plan on bothering me any time next week, you can just forget about it. I have midterms to study for, and a scholarship to protect, so I won’t have time to play twenty questions.”
“What about tonight?” He asked, the same time the girl asked him my name.
“Tonight?” I bit my lip, confused.
“Yeah, do you mind talking to me tonight?”
“Over the phone?”
“No, I was thinking about the movies, on Sixth Street.”
“So what, we can get kicked out?”
“Not unless you want to,” he laughed, “I was just thinking it might be a change of pace to, you know, do something other than talk about you.”
I rolled my eyes. Now he was insinuating that I liked to talk about myself too much! What a jerk. “I’ll have to check my schedule,” I hissed, and snapped the phone shut, flinging it across the room before I flopped down on my bed, face down.
My phone rang and I ignored it, humming to myself to drown out the shrill techno ring tone that I needed to replace. Then there was silence, and I relaxed. Maybe he got mad and gave up. Or maybe that girl he was with clawed his eyes out. Yeah, I liked that thought.
There was a hard knock on my bedroom door about a half hour later, and I barely had a chance to sit up before Andrew let himself in. He shut the door behind him. He leaned his back against the closed door, and folded his arms across his chest with a slightly irritated smile tugging unconsciously at the corners of his mouth.
“You have to check your schedule, huh? Why is it that I get the feeling I ticked you off?”
“Get out of my room! My dad will kill you if he finds you in here.” It was a result I wouldn’t mind all that much, but I knew that after my dad was done hiding the evidence and bloody remains of Andrew’s corpse, he’d come back and lecture me about boys, and celibacy, two topics that I had no intention of listening about in a lecture…again.
“He already knows. I told him that I was taking you to a movie tonight.”
“Oh, so now you decide what I’m going to do too now? Since when did I become your property,” I snapped, standing up angrily, and shoving him out of the way so I could open the door. I pushed him through the doorway, and slammed the door in his face, locking it so he couldn’t come in again.
I gritted my teeth, and stomped around my room, grabbing my book bag, and stuffing a different costume in it than the one I usually wore, since my other one was in some need of serious repair. I stuffed my wig in my backpack, and headed for the fire escape, and then I saw that Andrew was already standing there with a bemused grin.
I groaned, and shut my window, locking that too, before I unlocked my bedroom door, and stomped downstairs. “Have fun at the movies, Rainbow,” Dad called, “Wait, do you need money.”
“No, it’s all on Andrew tonight,” I replied, although I personally had no intention of going anywhere with Andrew at all. I was going to go on patrol, and take some unresolved issues out on the first evildoer I came across.
“Don’t you look cute,” Andrew murmured when I stomped down the stairs from my apartment, and out of my parent’s café.
“I’ll blow your face off,” I threatened.
“Wait, you’re headed the wrong way.”
“No I’m not. I’m not going to the movies. I’m not going anywhere with you.”
“Don’t expect me to cover for you. I’ll tell your parents right now, what you’ll really be doing tonight if you don’t go with me.”
“Go ahead, I don’t care.”
That got him. It was only a bluff, because I really did care about keeping my secret a secret, especially from my parents, but he fell for it anyways. Andrew jogged to catch up with me, and then he jerked me to a stop, placing a firm grip on both of my arms so that I wouldn’t turn away from him, or walk away from him again.
“Look, I’m a jerk.”
“You’ve got that right.”
He sighed, “I didn’t mean to make you mad, earlier. I love hearing about you, I just thought I’d give you a break. That’s why I was at my sister’s house.”
“Your sister’s house?”
“Yeah, I called up everybody I knew, but they were all busy, so I decided to go visit my sister,” he said, and made a face when he realized that seemed really desperate. So that was the giggler. Not a tramp. Not his girlfriend. Not that I cared.
“The movies,” I asked.
“We don’t have to, unless you want to.”
I sighed, “Sure, I’m sick and tired of telling you about myself.”
He chuckled, and whistled for a cab. It took about thee times, but finally one stopped, and we climbed in, but no sooner did we drive three blocks, did our little movie trip come to an end.
I heard it before I saw it. The crunch of metal cars under a large metal foot could’ve been heard for miles, even without the frantic screams of new Yorkers, diving out of their cabs like sewer rats, all trying to avoid the henchman driving the giant robot that stood three stories tall.
The foot swung over our cab, harmlessly, and then crashed down on top of the cab right next to us. Our cab driver started screaming like a little girl, and I rolled my eyes.
“I think this is my stop.”
I didn’t have time to change into my uniform, so I unbuttoned the front of my dress all the way so that it looked like a calf-length, short sleeved trench coat, thankful that I always wore a pair of shorts and a tank top under this one. I grabbed a pair of gloves, and boots out of my bag, and my wig. I pulled out the mask that I usually never wore and put them on hastily, grateful that our cab driver had fainted by now.
Andrew raised an eyebrow when I gave him an apologetic smile, before I leapt out of the cab, and made my way after the robot that was slowly making its way towards the bay. I didn’t plan on taking it on, or the henchman driving it. By now, the robot was done terrorizing the city, and was headed back to what I assumed was Black Wrath’s evil lair, so instead, I snuck up behind it in its blind spot, and hitched a ride on one of it’s massive metallic feet.
Once the robot ran out of land to walk on, its feet started to shudder, and a flame, like that off of a spaceship lifted the robot off of the ground. It flew high up, a little higher than the lowest clouds, and the henchman enabled its cloaking device, making the robot invisible.
Since I was hanging on to the robot, I was made invisible too, a sensation that was very odd, since I couldn’t even see my own hand in front of my face, but useful in the whole not wanting to be seen by the bad guys thing. My phone vibrated in my pocket, and the cloaking left my body, making me look like I was just sitting on air.
I quickly silenced my phone, seeing that it was Andrew before my hand disappeared from my sight again. I shoved the phone back in my pocket, and sat up when I saw that we were slowly making our descent. The robot landed in the playground of a condemned school, disabling the cloaking device, and I jumped off when it entered through a massive hidden door.
The hallway I ducked into was vacant, so I took this time to fly up, and climb inside the huge air ducts, pausing a moment to check my phone. Andrew had called five times already. I sighed, and called him, as I crawled quietly through the ducts, toward the voices.
Andrew answered his phone when I reached the end of the air duct that hung inside a gymnasium. I peered down through the grates, watching the scientists, and henchmen working, and Black Wrath supervising it all.
“Where are you?” He demanded, and his voice was so loud that it echoed in the duct.
“Shhh. I’m fine; I’m at P.S. 113 hiding in an air duct. Black Wrath has built his whole lair here,” I whispered, crawling closer to the vent to see more clearly, but then an alarm started to go off, and a green smoke filled the duct, choking me. I cursed softly, tossing the phone aside, kicking myself for setting off a trap.
There was a loud bang, and a hole appeared an inch from where my hand was. Another bullet made a hole almost perfectly across from the first one. The duct shuddered before it collapsed beneath me. I crashed face first on the ground twenty feet down on the polished granite floor. I would’ve flown, but the gas, it was something that shut off my powers, something that was starting to put me to sleep.
I coughed wildly, my arms and legs shaking as I tried to get up, but I sank back down, too tired. I felt the tip of a boot nudge my stomach, and roll me so that I was lying on my back. I coughed, as if to hack up a lung, my eyes fluttering as I looked around me.
At least ten guns were trained on me. Red-Pseudo holstered his gun, glancing up to admire his work, on the ruined air duct, one that had only needed two shots to bring the whole thing, and me down. I looked at the boot still wedged against my side, and my eyes wandered up the black panted leg with the long blood red coat hanging past his calves, the black silk shirt, and then to the strong chinned, masked face of Black Wrath.
“Hello, Dear,” He said, giving me a macabre grin, his black eyes taunting. My eyes closed, and I wondered idly if that would be the last thing I would ever see, before my mind totally slipped into the blackness.

I felt a hard pinch in the crease of my arm, and I opened my eyes just in time to see a metal rod retract with a vile of a syrupy dark red liquid in it. I held my arm up to my face, and I saw that blood was oozing from my skin. I lifted my head groggily, and peered around, noting that I was in some strange bubble, that I assumed was supposed to be a holding cell.

The bubble was actually a large clear dome with a high security lock on the only door, six cameras pointed at me from every direction, and a small port in which the metal rod disappeared inside before a metal flap sealed the opening. I rested my head for a moment, in hopes that the ringing in my ears would stop, and when I decided that this was just wishful thinking, I sat up from the cold metal table I had been laying on.

Inside, my hearing was limited. I could only hear the dead sprint of my heart careening wildly in my chest; the soft whisper of my lungs filling up with oxygen; the ominous hum of the air being pumped into, and circulated in my bubble prison. I couldn’t hear the commotion of anything outside the bubble, so it came as a surprise to me to find that I was not alone. I was still inside the gymnasium where I had been captured.

Outside the bubble, there was a chaotic mess of people. There were several men and women dressed in itchy-looking grey uniforms-henchmen no doubt-scientists grouped together with heads bent over huge mounds of paperwork, and finally I saw Black Wrath.

He smiled and chuckled, his lips moving in a delighted manner as he spoke with Red-Pseudo. They both seemed happy enough, especially Black Wrath. He seemed almost ecstatic, and I suppose he had every right to be. He was probably in the process of cooking up another grand theft of some sort that would make him a zillionaire, and the only person who had even the slightest chance of preventing such a theft was locked up in a stupid bubble.

Black Wrath smiled pleasantly at me in a way that made my skin crawl; his normally harsh black eyes were now a piecing midnight blue, appraising me as if I were a prize deer about to be stuffed and mounted. He greeted me with an amused grin, and his long white fingers caressed the wall of the bubble as if it were his long lost soul mate. I stared at him quizzically, leaning forward in hopes to catch something of what he was saying, but like one of those silent movies, his lips were moving, but I couldn’t hear his voice.

He lifted an eyebrow, waiting for my reply, and then he bent down slightly to hear what the gimpy-looking scientist accompanying him had to say before he flitted off anxiously to the mass of his lab-coat clad brethren. Black Wrath laughed and pushed a button on a control panel, with an Oh-that’s-why look on his face.

“Hello, Glimpse, I hope you slept well, Dear,” he said, grabbing the vile of my blood from Red-Pseudo, and studying it curiously, “You know, blood is a funny thing. It has the power to give and to take a life, given that the person is the right one, but in your case, your blood means so much more to us. It’s much like a roadmap, a roadmap that will lead us to who you really are. You see, despite de-wigging you, no one around here has the slightest clue of who you are. You must lead an anonymous life.”

I reached up tentatively, and looked at the brown curl of my hair in my fingers.

“Yes, that was the first thing we checked. I actually caught my henchmen taking bets on whether or not your wig was actually a wig, or your real hair. Personally I’m glad it was a wig, I don’t think pink is really your color. Anyways, our little identity crisis is one that I won’t worry about to much. With my power and resources, it is only a matter of time until I find out your real name, Glimpse.

“Once I know who you are, I will find your family…and well…you know. I hate that it has to come to this, but I can’t find another solution. I just can’t take the chance of having another brat with superpowers foiling my evil schemes all the time. No offense, I’m sure you’re a lovely girl when you don’t meddle in other people’s business.

“Anyways, once you are disposed of, my scientists will take you apart to find what really gave you your powers and if a new being can be made with the same abilities.”

“Why haven’t they tested you, or is shadow manipulation not cool enough to duplicate?” I growled.

“I hate to say this, but I absolutely abhor needles. I can barely stand to be in the same room as a needle, let alone having one put in my skin,” he replied with an amused chuckled.

I slid to my feet, and clung to the table for a moment, because my knees buckled weakly beneath me. Once I was sure I was able to stand on my own, I stumbled closer to him, placing both of my hands on the bubble’s wall, mostly to keep myself from falling over.

My right hand left a bloody handprint on the bubble’s surprisingly hard surface, and from the corner of my eye, I saw that the blood was streaming in a steady current from where the needle had pricked my skin. I had always been a bleeder, but this was ridiculous. Couldn’t my veins behave until the sadistic super villain was gone?

“My family won’t be killed. I will get out of here, and when I do, you will be sorry,” I hissed, my eyes narrowing.

“I hate to correct a lady, because it goes back on all of what my dear mother taught me about chivalry, but I am never sorry. I’m not sorry for being a thief, or for murdering those who get in my way, or who can’t do what they’re told. I am not sorry for capturing you, or for threatening the lives of your family, and I am definitely not sorry for this,” Black Wrath replied, pressing a different button on the control panel.

I expected an electric shock, or some other form of immediate pain, but when nothing happened, I forced myself into silent concentration. Something had happened. I no longer heard the soft hum of the stale air circulating in the bubble.

I chuckled, “What, shutting off the air-conditioning?”

“Not quite,” he replied smugly, “I’ve shut off your air supply. In approximately three minutes, you’ll have depleted your oxygen reserve. Breathe wisely, that’s all the air you’ll be getting.” Black Wrath laughed, and backed away so that he was standing off to the side, his eyes taunting as they watched my indecisive face.

I ripped my gloves off of my hands, and rubbed them together, focusing all my energy into a thin concentrated beam that I shot at the bubble’s wall. The thing I had neglected to realize was that this bubble was meant to keep me in, ergo; it was designed to withstand any punishment that I could dish out.

All of this came to my attention when my own energy beam bounced off of the wall and shot me in the arm, throwing me back against the metal table. My head caught the corner of the table, and for a moment, I think it knocked me clean out, because when I opened my eyes, I realized that my lungs were already starved of oxygen.

“Hurts, doesn’t it?” A henchman shouted as I struggled dizzily to my feet, and I realized that a small crowd was starting to form around my tiny prison. I must’ve been their entertainment for the night. Black Wrath stood apart from them. He wasn’t smiling or shouting with joy as all the others were. He watched my repeated escape attempts with cold pitiless eyes as he waited for me to die.

To my dismay, each attempt to escape cost me too much of my precious air, and before long, I realized I was running out of options. Red-Pseudo had enough of the audience, pushing them back towards their stations, calling them all slackers. The henchmen grumbled, but did as they were told, casting longing expressions back at me as they went back to work half-heartedly, wishing they could watch my demise too.

A few scientists gravitated towards the bubble, and took bets on how long my superhuman durability could keep me alive when I ran out of oxygen.

“Sir, I need to speak with you,” Red-Pseudo said, not bothering to tear his eyes away from me. By now I had started to gasp.

“Now?!” Black Wrath demanded.

“There was another intruder.”

“Bring him,” Black Wrath replied, waving his hand dismissively. He sat down in a chair that one of his henchmen brought, and he crossed his legs, with a hand on his chin, his eyes never leaving mine. He sat up excitedly when my legs crumpled beneath me, and I resisted the urge to roll my eyes when I heard one of the scientists comment that they were surprised I had lasted this long; that any normal person would’ve died already.

I made a list of worse demises to distract myself. Black Wrath could’ve fed me to his prized great white sharks. He could’ve strapped me to a lightning pole during a thunderstorm. He could’ve let his henchmen all have turns at beating me to a bloody senseless pulp, but no, he had to suffocate me.

Red-Pseudo returned as quickly as he had gone, and I was surprised to find that it was Andrew that he had a firm grip on. Andrew saw me, and he put on his best fake disgusted look, “Oh, no! You’ve got that Witch in here?! No way. I’m leaving!” He growled, spinning around to leave; only to be subdued by Red-Pseudo’s restraining hand.

Black Wrath stood up throwing a curious look my way before looking back at Andrew, “You know Glimpse then?”

“Do I?! She broke my fingers two years ago because I snapped a few pictures of her. I was just doing my job, and she broke all the fingers on this hand!”

“Job? Am I correct to assume you are a photographer for a newspaper then?”

“New York’s finest,” Andrew replied, and then studied me when he heard the desperate gasps increasing, “So, suffocation bubble, nice. I think she deserves worse, maybe a disembowelment, or to be hung by that nappy wig of hers, but this is good. Say, can I snap a few pictures of you guys?”

Black Wrath grinned, pleasantly surprised by the request and nodded. Andrew smiled excitedly, and put himself in between me and them, backing up towards my bubble, explaining that the more henchmen in the background, the more powerful Black Wrath would look in the picture.

Andrew snapped a few shots as he continued to back up, raving on about how this was front page stuff.

“Have you ever considered photographing crimes taking place?” Black Wrath asked, and Red-Pseudo rolled his eyes in an oh-please manner.

“You know, now that Glimpse will be retired permanently, I do need a new subject. Perhaps you can call me up if you decide to rob a bank or something,” Andrew answered, and then he tripped convincingly on the coiled extension cord lying on the floor. When he fell back, he made sure that his arm hit the release lever on my bubble, so that the door would open.

I scrambled to my feet as they fumbled to close the door, and with a second to spare, I escaped, flying out of their reach, up high enough so that I might have a chance to catch my breath. Sweet oxygen filled my deflated lungs, and was like a slap to my brain, waking it up again, just in time too. A bullet from Red-Pseudo’s gun whizzed past my head. It was so close that it blew through my hair before making a hole in the ceiling above me.

I dove, zigzagging, barely missing the well placed shots as I swooped in to save Andrew from one of Black Wrath’s henchmen. I spun Andrew so that I had my back to Red-Pseudo when he fired his gun again, and I sucked in a pain-filled breath when I felt the bullet graze my arm.

I flung an energy ball at Red-pseudo, and it exploded in front of him, knocking him on his butt, and the gun out of his hand. Andrew darted back, towards a big computer while I had my hands full with Black Wrath who had materialized from my shadow with a knife that he swung at my face. I dodged the sharp blade, but not quick enough, because I felt a good chunk of my hair being sliced off.

I kicked Black Wrath in the face, and he stumbled back as I pummeled him. I sent him flying with an energy ball and he landed in the same bubble I had been trapped in. The door closed, and Red-Pseudo growled at the henchmen to go get him out of there, but the henchmen were too disorganized. I looked over at Andrew’s grinning face when I heard the wail of a siren claiming that the building was about to self-destruct. That’s when the first bullet hit me.

I didn’t have time to clutch my stomach the way the heroes in the movies do when they’re shot. The sheer-force of the bullet knocked me off of my feet, and when I opened my eyes, I was laying on my back. Red-Pseudo chuckled as he stood over me. I could’ve kicked his legs out from under him, but my body hurt too much to move.

Red-Pseudo aimed the barrel of his gun at my heart. He squeezed the trigger, and a millisecond before the bullet exploded through my chest, I managed to hit him with an energy beam.

I laid still; acutely aware of the shock my body was already going into. I was going to die.

I could feel the warmth of my own blood bubbling up from both of the holes in my body, drenching my costume. I could feel the blazing pain shooting through the tunnels the bullets had carved through me. I could feel the dulling of my mind, but most importantly, I could feel Andrew’s hand in mine.

He reached me sooner than I had expected he would, so I didn’t have time to wipe the tears away that were streaming freely down my cheeks. My lips trembled when I gave him a weak smile, “I…guess…I’m…not…bulletproof.”

“Shhh,” He whispered, as his hands slid gently beneath me, lifting me off of the cold hard ground. I clutched his shirt, my knuckles going white. I hissed through the pain, with my eyes squeezed shut. I spoke again, but this time I couldn’t hide the raw agony in my voice, “Please! Please, don’t.”

“I have to. I have to get you out of here,” he replied, and he stood up with me cradled in his arms. He carried me quickly down a hallway, the lights flickering, and the wailing of the siren seeming even louder now than before. How long did it take a building to self-destruct anyways?!

To keep from losing my cool, I tried making another list. This one was of the things I wouldn’t get to do if I died. I wouldn’t get to go to college. I wouldn’t get to play my cello in an orchestra. I wouldn’t get to kiss…Andrew…

This last thought puzzled me even in my blood-loss-delirium. I had hated Andrew so long, that I found it hard to believe how much I could love him. But I did.

My mind swam away from reality, not into blackness, but into a bright white light, the kind people claim they see before they die. I was gone.

I heard the soft click of a camera shutter going off, and I shot straight up into a sitting position with my fist reared back menacingly. If some stupid photographer was going to try to get out of here with a picture of my secret identity they’d have to pry it from my cold dead fingers. I was ready to beat the crap out of whomever it was who had the nerve to take a picture of me, and then I realized it was Andrew.

“Whoa there, I come in peace,” he said with a mocking grin. He set his camera on the small nightstand beside the bed I was laying on, and put a gentle hand on my shoulder to calm me. I inhaled deeply through my nose, clutching my stomach with my right hand, becoming acutely aware of my bullet wounds.

I laid down shakily, and examined my hands and arms with needles poked into my skin, and monitors taped on with wires that tangled with each other.

“I’m…in a hospital.” I said, and listened to the words as I spoke them, the message not seeming clear to my brain. My eyes wandered curiously from the bars on the sides of the bed, to the bland white walls, and the vacant bed off to my right.

“Give this girl a quepee doll,” Andrew murmured his tone too affectionate to sound sarcastic.

“What did you tell them…I mean how did you tell the Doctors about me?”

“You mean Glimpse?” he asked.

I nodded tiredly, trying to ignore the burning in my chest and side where the bullets had pierced my skin. I tried to shift to alleviate the pain, but movement seemed to make it worse.

Andrew watched me with concerned eyes, “Are you okay? They said to holler if you get into too much pain…You almost died you know.”

“Die…me? Please,” I huffed, trying to sound arrogant, although I believed this statement 100%. I felt like I should be dead. Who knew living hurt so much?

“They said the bullet just missed your heart by a half inch.”

“I always knew that Red-Pseudo was a bad shot. If you can’t kill your enemy at point-blank range you’ve got no business picking up a gun.”

Andrew rolled his eyes, obviously not amused, “Anyways, after you blacked out, I tried to stop the bleeding as much as possible, but I knew that you wouldn’t make it if I tried to patch you up myself, so I made you look less like Glimpse, and then I called for an ambulance.”

“Wait a minute! There was actually a thought that went through your head that made you think that you could possibly ‘patch me up’?”

“I did go to college to become a doctor,” Andrew replied, sounding a little miffed.


“…I dropped out because it wasn’t what I really wanted to do…but that’s not the point!”

“Okay…so go on, then what?”

“Well, they loaded you up in the ambulance, and at first they weren’t going to let me ride with you, but then I told them, that I was a friend of the family. They asked me a whole lot of questions, like how long you had been like that, who your parents were, and if I saw anything. I told them that I found you lying like that in the street, and I saw a man in dark clothes running off with your purse.”

“Good, the old fake-mugging lie,” I said with a slight approval, and then I frowned, “Crap. That still leaves my parents to deal with. I told them that I was going out for a movie, but the ambulance picked me up ten miles from the theatre. I’ll have to come up with a good lie for that one.” I pursed my lips thoughtfully, nothing remotely good coming to mind.

“Or you could just tell them the truth.”

“Yeah, I can see that going over well. Hey mom, dad, so you know…the real reason I got shot was because I snuck into the secret lair of my arch nemesis, the Black Wrath. Please! They’d have me committed.”

“You could show them your powers,” Andrew replied, and I stared thoughtfully into his eyes.

For the first time, I found myself imagining a life without constant lies, one where my parents knew where I really was. It probably wouldn’t even be that hard to tell them. They might even be proud…and if not, if they made me hang up my pink wig and call it quits, it would only be for a year; two tops. I’d be turning eighteen soon, and going off to college-hopefully be the one of the Cellists in the orchestra-and I’d be able to do whatever I wanted without their permission. Yes, that would be nice.

But then the familiar fear started to creep up on me; the insecurity of their unknown reaction, especially after me being hospitalized for being shot. I’d be lucky to be let out of the apartment any time soon as Riley, let alone Glimpse if they knew the truth.

I shook my head at Andrew, the movement sending a shock wave of pain down my body, and I saw the hopeful light in his eyes dim, “It’s your choice. You know that your secret is safe with me, but I think you should tell them, for their sake.”

I sighed, closing my eyes, and not long after, did I feel something soft and warm brush lightly against my lips. My eyes fluttered open again, and I found that it was Andrew; he was kissing me. It took a moment for my groggy brain to process this, his lips tantalizing mine with some secret dance that my lips responded to like they were set on fire; his hands, gently caressing my face, his touch lighter than a feather, but feeling as heavy as an anvil.

I sat up slowly, and wrapped my arms around the back of his neck, something that was instinctual, although it could’ve been something I picked up from all the romance movies I’d watched with my mom last summer.

Why was this happening? I had no inkling of an idea that he liked me in this way at all. I had always thought of him as an older…not quite a brother, but a friend, and I thought the feeling was mutual but with this kiss he ignited something in me that I hadn’t known was dormant just beneath my two lives. I had never thought of a boy in the equation at all, let alone a man.

Andrew pulled back slightly, leaving an inch’s worth of space between both of our noses, and his hot breath tickled my cheeks, “Sorry.”

“Don’t be,” I whispered, kissing him back.

“No,” he said, and he easily broke my hold on him, “This isn’t fair of me.”

“Who said life was fair?” I asked, although I furrowed my brow, because he had lost me. How could he not be being fair? If anything he was wonderful.

Andrew shook his head, holding my hands to his chest, “I’m leaving; going to California. I got a job offer that I don’t think I can turn down.”

My face fell, and he looked away from my eyes. “So that was a goodbye kiss?”

“More or less,” he said with a pause, and then he gave me a rueful smile, “With a little bit of don’t-forget-me, and these-lips-will-always-be-yours mixed in.”
He stood up, grabbing his camera, and headed for the door. “Call me up if you’re ever in California, I’ll show you a good time.” He stopped, staring at the camera in his hands, and he tossed it to me, and by some luck, I managed to catch it without totally hurting myself. “A deal is a deal.”

With that he jammed his hands in his pockets and started to trudge down the hall. I stared after him longingly, then I looked down at his camera, flipped it on to display mode, and for a moment, I thought I was going to cry.

“Jerk,” I murmured, staring at the blurry unrecognizable blob of pink, peach, and brown that he had been blackmailing me with for the past month. I tossed the camera aside, and pulled the IV out of my arm, and ripped the monitors off of my skin.

The monitor tracking my pulse set off an alarm that made a lady over the intercom yell about a code blue, and I knew she was referring to me, but I had already gone too far to quit now. I snapped the bar on the side of the bed in a down position, and slid out, staggering to the doorway, and then out into the hall, with shouts from doctors that were too far away to stop me.

Andrew froze to a dead stop in the middle of the hallway when he heard the alarms, and I saw the hesitant way that he looked back, as if he was almost afraid to look back and see that I had died right there. When he saw me alive, stumbling after him, he thawed, and ran to my side.

By the time he got to me, I had sunk down to my knees. “What do you think your doing?” He yelled.

“Stay!” I cried, “Stay with me.”

Finally the doctors and nurses reached me, and they neutralized my frail attempts to stay on the floor with a quick shot of pain killer that had me falling asleep too fast.

“Please stay,” I said. I didn’t mean ‘stay here in the hospital’. I meant ‘stay in New York. Don’t go to California’, but the darkness swarmed over me, eating my brain up like a hungry school of piranhas, preventing my desperate pleas from escaping my mouth.

“I will,” he promised, and the darkness took me.

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This book has 9 comments.

on Jul. 30 2011 at 11:36 am
Tongue_Blep PLATINUM, ????, Ohio
40 articles 1 photo 769 comments
The caller was just posted, can u read it? I will read flash!!! :)(:

on Jul. 24 2011 at 6:36 pm
Tongue_Blep PLATINUM, ????, Ohio
40 articles 1 photo 769 comments
great! i just posted it but it still has to be put on teenink! it will take a few weeks but thanks. The whole name is called: Alien invasion series: Book one: the caller. But you can just click my user name. Glimpse was really good! I hope you get more comments besides mine! LOL haha. . . :)(:

HaleyStar GOLD said...
on Jul. 19 2011 at 9:44 am
HaleyStar GOLD, Mattoon, Illinois
12 articles 2 photos 35 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The dog? You are named after a dog?"
"I had a lot of fond memories of that Dog."~Indiana Jones~

"Can you knot?"
"I cannot."
"You can knot?"
"I cannot knot." ~Winnie the Pooh movie~

Sure, I'll read the Caller.

on Jul. 19 2011 at 9:21 am
Tongue_Blep PLATINUM, ????, Ohio
40 articles 1 photo 769 comments
Oh, and im writing a new book called the caller. when it comes out, could u read it? Thanks! and writing! :)(:

on Jul. 19 2011 at 9:20 am
Tongue_Blep PLATINUM, ????, Ohio
40 articles 1 photo 769 comments
Sweet! Tell me when it comes out and I will defintely read it! I loved the first book! :)(: Oh, the second part of my story nightstalker is out aas well. :)

HaleyStar GOLD said...
on Jul. 17 2011 at 3:45 pm
HaleyStar GOLD, Mattoon, Illinois
12 articles 2 photos 35 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The dog? You are named after a dog?"
"I had a lot of fond memories of that Dog."~Indiana Jones~

"Can you knot?"
"I cannot."
"You can knot?"
"I cannot knot." ~Winnie the Pooh movie~

Thanks. That'd be nice, but I doubt it.

HaleyStar GOLD said...
on Jul. 15 2011 at 3:38 pm
HaleyStar GOLD, Mattoon, Illinois
12 articles 2 photos 35 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The dog? You are named after a dog?"
"I had a lot of fond memories of that Dog."~Indiana Jones~

"Can you knot?"
"I cannot."
"You can knot?"
"I cannot knot." ~Winnie the Pooh movie~

Thanks. No, I'm not going to kill Riley off. I'm actually in the process of writing the sequel, and I have an idea for the third book.

on Jul. 15 2011 at 12:32 pm
Tongue_Blep PLATINUM, ????, Ohio
40 articles 1 photo 769 comments
PLEASE!!! don't let her die! write more!!! it was super good! :D ur a great writer!! Keep up the good work!

on Jul. 15 2011 at 11:23 am
Tongue_Blep PLATINUM, ????, Ohio
40 articles 1 photo 769 comments
LOVED IT!!! and i hope others will to! It should be in the magazine! :D