The bank robber was wearing a heavy-duty bulletproof vest,but that didn't do him any good against the lightning bolts.
When the thief came running out of the bank's front doors, Cobalt hit him with electrical blasts from both hands, sending him reeling to the ground. The man was wearing his body armor over black coveralls, with a full-face motorcycle helmet on his head and a submachine gun slung across his chest. He'd been intent on the four racing motorcycles lined up at the curb and hadn't seen Cobalt hovering twenty feet in the air, concealed from view by the building's overhanging facade.
If you wanted to be a successful crook in a place with as many hyper-heroes as Biggs City, you had to look up once in a while.
It was a lesson Cobalt himself obviously hadn't learned, for moments later he lay gasping on the sidewalk, struggling to free himself from the immense fetid mound smothering him. Far above, the sound of enormous flapping wings and baleful cooing died away as the genetically enhanced arch-villain HindenPigeon flew off to begin his conquest of Biggs City by means of a shock-and-awe bombardment of nano-guano.
Opening: Sean McCluskey.....Continuation: Paul Penna
As the woman tumbled from the heavens a riot of colours and questions chased her. Was that the rainbow spectrum of the balloon? Where was the parachute rip cord? Would life flash before her eyes?
Around 700 feet, she resigned herself to the terror of a recurring drowning nightmare she’d had as a child. Her chest tightened and the panic rose like vomit in her throat. Wake up! Wake up! Her brain screamed, but no sound came out.
Seconds from impact a feeling of calm spread through her. Aware of a benevolent presence, she relaxed into familiar arms, arms that lifted her. And, instead of plummeting, her body now felt as though it were gliding, or maybe she was flying.
500 feet, 400 feet, 200 feet…
The woman who faced imminent death took one last look around.
To the right, the sky was the same blue as her mother’s eyes. In the foreground, gold trimmed puffs of cloud lingered next to the most luminous reds and oranges, as if birds were shedding their colourful feathers.
To the left, the trees were dancing slowly, half lit in red organza dresses.
The woman lurched to the right, missing the trees, and plunged into the frigid water. As her entire world turned to darkness, a final thought flashed through her mind: Freedom.
* * *
After twenty minutes, 24D hadn't returned from the restroom, so Chuck turned to 24F. "Howdy. My name's Charles, but most folks call me Chuck. What's your name? I'm going to merry old England to visit my grandchildren. Have you been to England? The motherland? I went once before on a training course. I'm in sales. Insurance, mostly. You got insurance? You should. Hm? Sure, go ahead. Might be a queue..."
Opening: Dina Desveaux.....Continuation: Anon.
I could hear the fear in my breathing - jagged and sporadic. My lungs screamed for oxygen, and my muscles fought back as I encountered cramps in succession throughout my legs. My brain was wailing in pain, trying to plea bargain with my heart; begging for my legs to stop running, if only for a moment. However, my heart refused this task because I was searching - in the barren darkness of the underground tunnels - for him.
Confused and disoriented, I frantically turned without thinking down another hallway almost entirely devoured by the darkness. The acrid odors previously stinging my nose began to subside as the stale, thick air began to thin, making breathing easier. I continued to run faster than my body wanted; because I knew, I was going to lose the love of my life. Run Carrie, I could hear him say in my head, his voice as smooth as silk was quietly tickling my thoughts. I'm coming, I said without words, and continued pushing myself to run harder as my vision became blurry from tears. Tears of fear, anguish, and love.
The ache was jagged and sporadic, like a pounding in my brain. My eyes were tearing from the fearing, water swirling down a drain. The starkness of the darkness, blackness bringing on the slackness-- courage failing, and my wailing, to my love (whom I was hailing), was the foment of my to'ment, like a beating from a cane.
As I scrambled through the cavern-- dank and smoky, like a tavern-- I espied a glowing fire, at my level, only higher. Up a staircase; through a doorway, like a Dane escaping Norway, ducking ceiling; leaping chasm, 'till one final frightful spasm, sent me sprawling and a-bawling, to the cold unyielding floor.
And then, finally, did I see, like a ship far out at sea, a lone candle in the dim, held up by a hand quite slim: pale whiteness like fine marble, hair of gold, and eyes a-sparkle. T'was my love, my one-and-only! There he stood, alone and lonely. By my side, he bent a knee, and these words he spake to me:
“Where the hell's the circuit breaker?”
Opening: Natbagel.....Continuation: Sean