Superhero Sister: Part Two
Two months after the fateful day at the park, and I think I despised every moment my brother was around.
It wasn’t that he himself was annoying; it’s just everybody else around us. For example, after he saved Ms. Frunlee’s White Weewoo from being stuck in a tree he had been told by my mother, “Oh, dear, you’re so wonderful! You’re the bravest Bori in the city! Why, I was just telling Mr. Green in the grocery store that the Defenders think you will be their leader soon enough!”
From my mother I heard, “Eat your broccoli.”
And he climbed up a tree. Oh, my, how dangerous. I was remarkably sure only I could see the mediocre-ness of his tasks. He usually was called away once a day, or at least every other. Then, wearing a smug smile, he would tell my mother and me of his dangerous assignment. My mother, being the person she is, would of course swoon over him. I didn’t blame her, however, as he
was her son. At these points, I would start to feel guilty over my annoyance at Rayon.
The guilt was hard to live with. Whenever Rayon was complimented, I tried my best to smile and feel happy for him- but I never was. It felt... it felt like only I knew of the real him.
His vanity of the uniform was well known only to me as well. I once stupidly tried to touch it, but he snapped and snarled at me. It was strange looking. The pants were “shorter pants with increased movement variety”, but I still call them capri pants. The top was a dark turquoise with black on the cuffs on the sleeves that flared outwards. The collar went high upwards, and then before it went to the extremes it turned downwards again. Right in the center of his chest was a black “N” for Neopia, I guess. The boots were polished so brightly you could see your reflection easily in them.
The cape... he was worse with that. I couldn’t go within five meters of the cape when he wasn’t wearing it. His “cape senses” told him I would rip or tear it. I rarely got a good view of it, but I’ve pieced enough of it together to know that its edges are lined with turquoise, matching the top, with black as the main body. I still don’t know what the symbol is on the back.
Rayon didn’t have a mask yet, to his chagrin. Only “members with previous encounters with villainous creatures” got them, but I say that you have to be talented to get one.
Whenever he was needed, a small button attached to whatever shirt he was wearing beeped. Coincidentally, it always happened when we were about to eat dinner. He never sighed or growled, just quietly excused himself from the table with my mother looking on in pride and me in a bit of anger... and jealousy perhaps?
I wonder what my father would have done... he was off in Mystery Island, though, working on a report for his work. He was in the deep jungle, so we couldn’t get word to him about Rayon’s promotion.
Rayon had just left my mother and me to go on some mission, and Marcy and I avoided each other’s eyes. I glanced around the kitchen. It was old, like everything else in the house with rickety cupboards and dust gathering beneath cupboards. Various spices and paraphernalia were scattered along the countertop, and jars placed in high places that needed a chair to reach.
When I finished my dinner consisting of tomato soup and buttered bread, I silently washed my dishes in the sink, scrubbing the bowl clean. Marcy still sat, slurping down the final remains. She took a deep breath.
“Aryan, what will you do when you grow up?” she asked, the lines around her eyes narrowing. My mother was very kind, but she always wanted me to become someone great, someone terrific. The problem is I’m not great or terrific.
A shrug was my answer. “I’m not sure. I’d like to keep all possible doors open and not have someone else close them for me.”
She pushed the bowl away from herself, frustrated slightly at my inability to answer, “But where do your interests lie?”
“I’m still not sure... sorry...” I added afterwards, to not cause any more voice raising than needed. Arguing was something I detested. It hurt your voice and got you only to bad places.
Marcy would have replied, if not for Lola, my friend of many years burst through the door, nearly breaking it.
“Lola!” I cried as she found her way to us. “What in the world are you doing here? What’s the matter?”
The Xweetok paused to catch her breath, leaning heavily on the doorframe, which caused it to squeak. “You... Rayon... outside... run...”
I ran to catch her as she fell from exhaustion. I was a tad too slow, and she thumped onto the wooden floor. Marcy quickly came over, picking Lola up from the ground.
“Go outside, see what’s wrong!” she said, panic in her eyes. “I’ll stay here with Lola.”
I didn’t say anything; I just sprinted out of the door. My mother never panicked, only in emergencies. The last time I had seen her like this was when my father went on his trip. It was my youngest memory... my mother crying.
I slammed to door open, and it banged into the wall on the outside. I was now on the small porch, and I jumped the two steps to go down to the front of the house.
There was something very, very wrong with the wind. Normally it whistled away, happy as it could be, but today it seemed it had a vendetta with the world. It whipped around me, and leaves flew into my face. I brushed them away with a swipe of the paw. Looking upwards, the sky was a swirl of grays and blacks. It looked like the sky of Terror Mountain before a storm.
The wind was fleeting. It stopped all around me, leaving an eerie feel. Small raindrops fell onto my back.
I didn’t know where to go; Lola hadn’t given me directions. Well, she had passed out so I guess she deserved some leniency.
I nervously trotted down to the front of my house, not wanting to be surprised by anything. The cul-de-sac that I lived on was usually bright with energy due to the young ages of its inhabitants. Someone was always playing, skipping rope or chatting away happily.
But not today.
Today it was a poet’s worst nightmare. Trees were swaying with the epitome of darkness, flowers shriveling up in hiding. I whisked my head to and fro, trying to find what had caused this ruckus.
An explosion to the southwest; I screamed and jumped out of my skin. I ran around my house this time, into my backyard. It was small and fenced in. It was the one area where my mother truly had fun, as gardening was her favorite pastime. I opened the first gate, and then hopped over the back fence. I had always wanted to try and jump the fence when I was younger, but common sense said ‘no’, and that was when I figured out why. The jagged edges scraped along my belly; I hadn’t achieved a good height.
Still getting over the fence, luckily, I checked my stomach. I yelped when I saw the bright red marks against the yellow fur, but it wasn’t bleeding. I was now in the park, which the backyard bordered. I was in the northern part of it, so I streaked over the grass southwards to the explosion. There were too many trees, benches, playground equipment and small hills to see the disturbance in the distance, but I could hear shouting.
Fighting my way through some of the trees to a small clearing I held my breath in shock at what I saw: my brother, Judge Hog, and every member of the Defenders lying on their backs, moaning in obvious pain.
I dashed to my brother, who looked fine with the exception of a small cut on his cheek. He fluttered his eyes open and weakly lifted his head off the soaking ground when he saw me leaning over him in serious concern. “Aryan...” he muttered. “Don’t... trust... anybody...” His head dropped into my supporting paws. He had passed out.
I gently put his head into my lap and looked around me. Every Defender was either unconscious or nearly. But what had caused this...? Whatever had done this couldn’t be far from here.
Adrenaline flooded threw my veins. If whatever had caused this could knock out the Defenders, it could certainly knock out me. I needed someone’s help...
I never had the chance. There was a massive explosion behind me, but much louder than the one before. The sound was only a few decibels from knocking out my hearing, I suppose, as the shockwave threw me almost a meter into the air.
The next thing I remember is rolling when I hit the ground for damage control, and then... nothing.
To be continued...