“Ugh,” I said, “Is this seriously my costume? I feel a bit like a stripper.” I turned around, showing Dagny, no, Mirage the front of my new suit. It was all in white, of course. The top part was a tube top reaching down to just under my breasts, with an “S” inside a crescent moon on it. The rest of my chest was completely bare, but the skin-tight pants reached down to the middle of my calves.
“It’s because you’re armoured,” Mirage said sagely. “A, you’re protected from damage when you’re fighting, so no need to give you protective gear. B, since you’re an attractive female, the SVRA is going to want to market your sex appeal. But, since you’re armoured… the SVRA wants to make the few times you’ll be exposed as revealing as possible.” I groaned, and flopped down onto my bed.
“This is such bullshit,” I said. Mirage laughed.
“Hey,” she prompted, “What about this?” She was holding out another white garment, one that I had chosen to ignore, then promptly forgot about. I shrugged.
“Dunno. I felt the leather and dropped it. I assumed it was like… fetish wear, but now that I already have pants… Pass it.” She tossed it over. As it flew through the air, it opened up, dropping something on the floor. I swore. I shook out the leather, glaring at her. Because of the glare, she saw what I was holding before I did, and promptly cracked up.
“Oh god,” Mirage choked out, “I don’t have to do any matchmaking after all! The fucking SVRA is doing it for me!” I just shook my head. They had given me a white, kev-weave belly jacket, then styled it to make it look like leather. Simply put, I looked like a female version of Zeta, but in white. “I’d bet,” she said slyly, “That if you look on the floor, you’ll find goggles and a utility belt.” I didn’t bother. I knew she was right.
Zeta leaped over the rooftop, using his flight to make the jump.
“C’mon,” he shouted, “I’m winning in distance AND style!”
“Show-off,” I muttered, just loud enough for him to hear me. I jumped as far as I could, then used a strategically placed stilt construct to do a flip over the rooftop. I nailed the landing, touching down with my feet together and my arms up. Zeta grinned at me.
“Show-off,” he teased.
“Hold on a sec,” he said, panting. “You win, you win. I can’t beat you without using flight.”
“Please,” I said, injecting every ounce of haughtiness I could into my voice, “You couldn’t beat me if you had all seven of your powers at once!” He chuckled. Encouraged, I continued. “Zeta, you have been defeated! You cannot hope to stand up to the might that is, I, Mistress Selene, Goddess of the Moon!” He burst out laughing. “Oh, come on,” I said, deflating. “It’s not that bad.”
“Not that bad? I’m almost positive you stole that from an episode of Teen Titans!”
“Hey, I loved that show!”
“And so did I. It’s still corny.” I pouted.
“Well fine, Zeta. But you-”
“Jason,” he interrupted.
“Jason. My name. You can call me by it. Actually, use Jay. Most of my friends do.” I grinned at him.
“Awww, you’d trust me with your name? That’s so sweet! I’d offer you mine, but I’d expect you already took it from my file, like you did with my brother.” He winced.
“He told you about that? Well, yes, but this is different. I know your name, but that doesn’t mean I can call you that.”
“Hmm. So, by giving me your name, you’ve put yourself in an interesting position, then?” I leered at him. “I can call you whatever you want, but you’re still forced to call me Selene.”
He didn’t rise to the bait.
“Very true,” he responded evenly. “So, what’s your desicion?” I thought about it for a minute.
“I will give you my name,” I grinned, “On one condition.”
“You have to call me Mistress Selene, Goddess of the Moon.”
At that, he broke his poker face, a giant smile spreading across his face.
“Oh, so you’re into the kinky shit now?” I swatted at him.
“Go on! Say it, you wimp!” He fended off my hands, laughing.
“Alright, alright. I surrender, Mistress Selene, Goddess of the Moon.” I relaxed.
“Ha. I actually like the sound of that. But, a deal is a deal. My name,” I said, Mirage’s words dancing through my head, “is Diana.”
We paused on a rooftop again, after four hours of absolutely nothing.
“Shit,” he said, “This is really boring.” I nodded in agreement,
“Absolutely. Care for a drink?” He glanced at me curiously. I dangled Rune’s hip flask in front of him. Rather than having one of the typical reactions, like, “Oh, sure,” or “No, I don’t drink,” or even the good old, “Drink that Satan Piss? I would never,” he just started cracking up.
“What’s so funny?” I asked, a bit miffed.
“Hold on, hold on,” he gasped. “This is good.” He reached into his own jacket pocket, and pulled out a flask exactly like my own. “I stole one of his flasks too!” I collapsed laughing.
“When did you even… OH GOD, HE’S GOING TO BE FURIOUS!”
Ten minutes later…
We sat with our feet dangling over the rooftop, masks off and at our sides, taking the occasional sip from the flasks.
“You know,” I began, “You’re really not such a bad guy.” He looked over at me.
“You know,” he said dryly, “I think that’s the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me.”
“No, no,” I protested, “I’m serious. My brother spent half of boot camp ranting about how much of an asshole you are. But really, you’re nice!” He sighed, and sat back, lying against the roof.
“Okay, let’s get this over with. I am an asshole. The biggest. Sometimes. It’s like, there’s Happy Jay, me right now, who can crack jokes, flirt with a pretty girl, do normal stuff. But there’s also Angry Jay, no, wait. Let’s call it Jay and Zeta. I’m Jay, and Zeta is me, but angrier, and stronger. It’s not like, a separate personality, more like, a separate set of emotions. Got it?”
“Wow, you’re such a great flirt,” I joked, “Word to the wise: if you have to reassure a girl that you’re not crazy, you’re doing it wrong.” He didn’t laugh, didn’t even smile.
“I wish I could reassure myself of that,” he whispered, so quietly I barely heard him.
“You might think you’re unique, and that’s okay,” I said, gently as possible. “But you’re not. Listen. I’ve had my powers all my life, but I’ve always had to keep it a secret. Secret identities of my Dad and Will, and all that. So, powers, something integral to me were cordoned off, forced to be something that Diana shouldn’t do, not something that Diana is. It causes problems. I think that’s what you’re going through now. There’s another you in your life all of a sudden, on top of all your problems.” He smiled at me, a wan, thin smile.
“Another me in my life… Ha. You have no idea how true that is.”
“I just want you to realize, you don’t have to deal with this alone.”
“You’re right,” he mused sitting back up, “I’ve always got Khan there for me…”
“And,” I started to say, then hesitated. He looked at me expectantly. “And,” I continued, “You’ve always got …” I stared into his eyes, ” You’ve always got me.” I reached towards his face, as he leaned towards me, and–
Alright, here’s the story. This was spontaneous and a surprise to the people writing. It was originally going to be deleted, but then people really liked it, said it was really well written and they wanted to know what happened a lot. So, we kept it in. Feedback MUCH appreciated. Do you like it? Would you like to see more of stuff like this, or less? Is it anathema to your existence? Thanks for reading!