Camp Ortunda on the Middle Loup River, Nebraska, 2000
12yr old Klembarya Dekert sat on the steps of the health and fitness camp, waiting. Every other kid had been picked up and the remaining counsellors had moved from sympathetic to apathetic as the clock clicked past six p.m.
“Any idea what they could be doing?” Chad asked into her face before walking up the steps into the building. Klembarya didn’t know how to answer. She’d hated every moment here. Her parents had sent her here to curb her weight which made her feel even worse about herself. Every day for three weeks it’d been jogging, sit-ups and vegetables; stuff that NO fat kid enjoys!
“Still no answer,” Cassie huffed as she walked in circles with a cell phone. “Shouldn’t be long Klember…Clementine, sorry.”
Klembarya hated her name. Her name was half what her dad wanted, half what her mum wanted and then smashed together and then written down incorrectly by the nurse at the hospital. Hated her weight. Hated her parents. Hated the camp and the rude staff. If she could curl into a ball and vanish, she would.
“CASSIE!” Chad yelled from inside. “YOU GOTTA SEE THIS!”
Cassie ran past Klembarya and back into the lobby leaving the poor little fat girl alone as the sun went down. Slowly Klembarya shuffled up to the door to see what was so interesting. Chad and Cassie were glued to the television that was up on the wall. Jerky images of helicopters and fire flashed across the screen. It was hard to make out.
“…tain Nebraska and Keeper have been laying into each other like a couple of prize fighters. Authorities are worried if the fight spills over into the grounds of the Sedgwick Nuclear Depot, then what seemingly started as just another super brawl could turn into a full scale emergency.”
“I live near there,” Klembarya mumbled from the doorway.
The camera showed Keeper’s armour powering up as Captain Nebraska flew down towards him like a missile. The camera went white as they collided. The ground of Camp Ortunda rumbled and shook; they were only two hours away from the battle zone.
“CHAD!” Cassie leapt into his arms.
“I got you babe.”
Klembarya watched the screen as Keeper stomped forward and looked down the lens. “If you left me alone, NONE of this would’ve happened!” The screen went black as his fist smashed through it.
Ryker’s Island, 2018
Kard smashed her energy blade into Fortress’ telekinetic shield and began to cut through it. Fortress focused his mind on keeping it intact but it was a struggle. Keeper folded his arms and sighed.
“Why don’t you just rip her head off?” He asked. “Why are morons and the unimaginative always gifted with the best powers.”
“Could you shut up!?” Fortress snapped. “Maybe do something useful.”
“Very few people speak to me in such a manner and still get to breath,” Keeper warned as he strolled away, stopping only as he reached the end of the invisible bubble covering them.
“I am going to cut your damn head off!” Kard roared as she pulled the blade out and tried another angle.
“Do you consciously make a bubble?” Keeper asked. “A triangle would be a stronger and more effective choice and it would allow me to reach the fire extinguisher on the wall.”
Fortress used his powers to slam Kard backwards as he turned and faced Keeper. “What are you yapping about? I’m trying to save your life!”
“Bravo, good job,” Keeper commented as he grabbed the extinguisher off the wall. “Keep up the good work.”
“DIE!” Kard yelled as she fired a barrage of mini missiles from her wrists. Fortress pushed Keeper to the floor and erected a wall of invisible force. The first few stopped but as the sky filled up with hovering missiles, one collided with another setting off a chain reaction. Fire and flame erupted in a mushroom cloud flinging Fortress away. Kard stalked forward through the flames.
“I’ve trained eighteen years for this moment, Keeper!” she glowered. “I’m going to…”
KLANG! Keeper smashed the fire extinguisher across Kard’s face sending her to the floor with blood gushing from her nose and mouth. KLANG! He brought it down on the back of her skull.
“Oh, do shut up!” Keeper hissed as he looked down at her. “You’re some little hard done by trollop who thinks I’m the cause of all that’s gone wrong with your life, is that it?”
“You killed my parents,” Kard groaned as she tried to get up.
KLANG! Keeper smashed her over the head again. “I’ve killed a lot of people’s parents my dear. You’re not special.”
“K-kill…you…” Kard stammered.
“Better people than you have tried, and still I’m here.” Keeper raised the extinguisher high and brought it down only to have it stop a hairs breadth from Kard’s skull. Keeper glared at Fortress who was preventing the blow.
“Don’t do it,” Fortress warned him.
Keeper whirled on his heels and was straight up in his face making Fortress very uncomfortable. “The thin ice you were on has just cracked!”
Keeper suddenly found himself telekinetically pinned upside down to the wall. “Really?” Fortress asked. “Is that so?”
“You’re bleeding,” Keeper told him.
“No I’m noARRRGHHH!” Fortress screamed as Kard impaled a blade into his side. He fell to the floor as Keeper was dropped on his head. Kard laid a boot into Fortress before stepping over him to deal with Keeper.
“You’re a monster who needs stopping,” she spat as she raised an arm, electricity crackled from the end. “You don’t deserve to breathe anymore. You’ve killed too many, too often! You belong in the ground not behind bars.”
“I can tell you’re a real villain,” Keeper commented as he stood up. “You’re monologing!”
KLANG! The fire extinguisher smashed across the back of her head via telekinesis knocking her out. Fortress wobbled to his feet.
Keeper was surprised. Despite the potentially life threatening injury to himself, Fortress was concerned for the safety of others. Keeper grabbed an arm and lowered him back to the ground. “You need to place pressure on your side whilst I engineer your escape.”
“I ain’t going anywhere until you’re safe!”
Keeper couldn’t help but smile. A genuine smile, which was rare for him. “I’m fine. Now shut up! You will form with your mind, a patch that will hold your blood inside your body. Imagine a coconut shell…good…excellent. You need to focus on that otherwise you are going to bleed out and die.”
Keeper grabbed some bits off Kard’s costume and began to tinker. Fortress went to speak only to have Keeper cover his mouth. “I have repurposed my would-be assassin’s flying gear to rocket you to the best doctor in Canada, possibly the world. She works in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. I thank you for your service, Fortress. I shall forward payment to you once I have dealt with Flail. Good luck and may we never cross paths again.”
Fortress went to speak but his words were drowned out by the rocket belt that shot him up into the air and away. Keeper calmly placed some circuitry under his tongue before sitting quietly on the floor with his hands above his head.
“Siebenunddreiβig…Sechsunddreiβig…Fünfunddreiβig…” he counted down as the sounds of footsteps thundered towards his location.
To be continued...