I'm vertically expanding my third eye into the core of the Earth. A lance of unperceptible light, withdrawn from the downward center of everything, now raised upright in a horizontal challenge. Two million unicorns, all parading around daily with varying degrees of stellar self projecting from their frontal lobe. My own spike shooting forth, clearing a path, and drawing onlookers who can't see, but feel my presence.
I'm at the 8th Street subway station over by Astor. On the other side I spot several innocents milling about, on their way home from dinner, drinks, dancing. I suspiciously try to subdue my soul long enough to slip by, escape out on to the streets above where I'll have room to maneuver.
Trains speed along the four rows of tracks between me and the others, and just as the trains pass they make their move. I can't see it from the other side but I know the scene. Eyes glaze over as brainwashing triggers seep into their ears from the headphones of their iWorlds.
The young girl is first across, bounding and leaping between the pillars. She drives her knee towards my face. I slip under as she smashes the tiles, and I make a dash for the stairs. From the corner of my eye I see McAllister has commanded a dozen more civilian assassins with his gadget.
I skid to a halt at the bottom of the stairs. Behind me a slew of flying and leaping attackers. On the top step, a Thai warrior in sandals waits patiently for my first move.
Maybe leaving New Jersey before my powers returned wasn't such a good idea. I should have known it wouldn't be this easy to sneak back into New York City.
As I'm typing this, I suddenly feel my consciousness being sucked through a straw. I warble into being at a bar out in Brooklyn. I glance at my watch and will see that I've been brought through time and space. Only one girl would teleport me to Williamsburg on a Saturday Night...
She pops over my shoulder as I think her name. I should have guessed. "It's not time for you in the story yet darlin'..."
"Oh phooey." She waves her hand and schrunches her nose, her pink highlights accenting her freckles. With a snap of her fingers and a smirk she sends me back to finish my story. Her story.
Out in New Jersey I had put my fractured mind back together, my body long since healed. Mentally resurected, I found myself wandering the outskirts of New York City, afraid of what lie in store for me across the Hudson.
My powers were all but gone and I was trying to get them back but it seemed they were temporarily blocked. At least I hoped it was temporary.
I went online so I could speak with other superpowered folks to get a better idea of what was behind all this. Taia Nihilation, the explosive jailbait anarchist who carved a path of destruction through Philadelphia, mentioned something about papaya extract. It worked to a degree but I was still not nearly strong enough to sneak back into my city. A few others from the tri-state area gave me some hints. But impatience got the best of me and within a few months I was trying to sneak back in.
I contacted Eve Impossible, knowing that she would be my best bet for slipping in unnoticed. I had my best disguise on as I went to meet up with her on the Manhattan side of the Holland Tunnel. I hit Canal, made a right, and headed up the stairs to the club.
It was lowkey and still as I searched the room. Odds are she would find me way before I spotted her. Unsure and feeling nervous, I had a beer or two before the dance floor exploded to life. The music was infectiously upbeat and I bounced right into it. I was letting go and celebrated living through the severe beating I received a few months back, just a few stories above this exact location in fact. Ms. Mercury had made it clear I was not welcome here.
But I wasn't thinking of her as I danced. I wasn't thinking of anyone but myself. And that's when Eve appeared before me. We were suddenly moving and grooving and getting down. Our mad passion to dance was spreading to all those around us as the night swung wildly on.
A few hours later we hit the streets as she led me into the empty outside. She doesn't say much and encourages me to do the same. Eve stops in front of an all black sports car as the passenger side door pops open.
"Get in. I'll contact you when I can."
I silently and obediently followed her instructions and plopped myself into the seat. The door shut of its own accord and I watched Eve, her blonde hair whipping behind her as she walked coldly away. I turned to the driver who was just as intimidatingly quiet.
I tried to strike up conversation as I was escorted back through the tunnel, but this man in black would have none of it. He was stone so I gave up and enjoyed the ride. But I felt defeated. I would have to rely on Eve Impossible from this point on.
Knowing our history I was suprised she got back to me as soon as she did. She gave me another place to meet up. I was headed out the door when Daisy Hurricane landed before me. I had ran from her a few weeks earlier as she fought me to love her.
I expected a fight that, despite being a bit stronger than before, I would instantly lose. But instead she wanted to say goodbye.
"I just want to make sure you're safe and that you're good. Use this if there's any trouble." And with that she handed me a red sword. It looked old but felt like a true weapon.
I hugged her tight and we both knew that we'd never see each other again. Tears welled up as the sound of helicopter blades suddenly rose up all around us. Daisy tossed me to safety as the bullets from the attack helicopter started ripping everything to shreds. She had caught a slug or two but felt nothing. Instead she channelled her anxiety, frustration, and broken heart on the attackers above.
Whirling into the air she knocked the copter about, whipping the winds about her. Landing gently on its side she drove her fists through the armor. She waves me off and continues to pound the artillery into scrap. I race off down the block, blood red blade in hand. My powers were pulsating in bursts, surging me forward with each pounce. SUVs screech around the corner, each with mercenaries firing automatic weapons. I grip the sheath and draw the blade.
Leaping and soaring over the hoods of the skidding trucks, I drive the sword slicing through the steel. The cars all flip and crash as I land and roar down the street. The train is blasting its engines as it pounds down the track. I pounce off a lightpost and snag a handhold, tossing myself onto the roof. We're speeding past Main Street as I see the calvary arrive in black, driving off in the wrong direction.
Just a few miles out of NYC I feel a presence behind me. I'm about to glance behind when I smell Strawberries and misfortune. "Megan, not yet. I haven't even made it back into New York yet."
"Can't you hurry it up? I want to go dancing..." I can hear her pout.
"Give me a few paragraphs sweetness."
Back on the tracks the trains bursts into Penn Station. I leap down and wrap the sword in a garbage bag. Suspicious as heck, I make my way to Union Square. Just a few minutes til the meet with Eve. Better hustle.
I'm running all the things I learned from the others I communicated with. Mary Mega's meditational mantra, Dr. Dementia's prescription of pleasure, and Minnie Soda's delicate drunken dance. They used their own magick to enhance and empower themselves. I needed to find my trigger.
Eve was late. Or I was. I shook my watch and looked up and down the block again. Empty. I started getting nervous. The people were what made this city safe. An omnipresent third party; witness and observer.
A petite blone turned the corner. She had her head down, under a hood, but her golden locks hung unevenly from beneath. She felt magical and friendly, even on these dark, foreboding streets.
I opened my mouth to speak but before I could say anything, her fingers shot out, and pressed against my lips. Her subtle twinkling eyes rose up from under the hood, locking onto mine. The moon lit up her serious smile as it transformed into a devilish smirk.
I was sent soaring straight up into the air, hit by some unseen force. She floated up next to me and grabbed me by the collar. She whizzed me around and hurled me into the side of a building a block down. I hit it hard, but grabbed hold of a ledge and hung there gathering my senses.
She zoomed towards me beating her pixie wings furiously. Her fists extended she was intent on finishing me off. I pounce off the side of the building and glide towards a flag pole. I wind up just missing it as I get a shoulder block in the back from the toughest fairy I've ever met.
We're zooming towards the pavement as I roll with the hit, flipping myself onto her back. Clumsily, I jump off as I steer her into the sidewalk. I land and start to run. My muscles start to come alive with kinetic intensity. By the time I reach the corner I'm skipping blocks at a time.
I whipped back around and slid back through Union Square. Crouched and ready for a fight I survey the scene. Eve Impossible is standing alone outside the subway station, her trenchcoat buttoned up and tied tight. The wind is gently churning through the scene.
"What's this about Eve? A double cross? You work for McAllister now too?"
"I'm sorry Charles. But I work on my own. This was a favor for a friend."
The entire area lights up in a golden flash. I'm temporarily blinded but I feel a presence. An oh-so familiar presence.
"Helena...?" I muttered weakly.
My vision came back in waves and Ms. Mercury shimmered to life before me. She was a golden goddess. Pure sensual pulsar sheen radiating all around her body.
Ms. Mercury called out, "Luna!"
The ferocious pixie came and landed on one side of me. She was scowling at me and ready to pounce at Mercury's command.
A fluttering of pigeons signaled the arrival of Raptor who appeared behind me. The four of them had me surrounded at each point. Even though I felt the thrust within me, ready to burst, I would never be able to take on all four. I wouldn't even be able to survive one hit from Ms. Mercury.
Suddenly a winter chill swept through, snowflakes raging down from every direction. The weather malfunctioned and I was sitting in the eye of the storm. A faint brimstone smell was carried away by the winds and replaced with the smell of fruit. Hmm...strawberries?
A female shape materialized beside me and I nearly threw myself off the cube in surprise. I figured she was one more of Mercury's assassins, so I prepared myself for a fight. Instead, this pink streaked, raven haired beauty stood over me armed with only a charming smile.
"Hey cutie. I just thought you could use some rescuing. Wanna come back to my place?"
I did a sweep of the snowy scene and saw that the ladies were about to make their move. I glanced up at my saving grace and nodded frantically.
My stomach lurched and I found myself suddenly sitting on a couch in a living room. The strawberry girl had her legs draped over me. Somehow we were dressed in pajamas and were watching tv.
She looked over at me and said, "Hey sweetness." Her smile was wide and as genuine as they come.
"Where am I?"
"At my apartment in Brooklyn, silly."