WoP: Chapter 16

The siren woke Jane up and she rolled out of bed. “Why are there alarms in this house?” she yelled the question out of anger and didn’t really expect an answer. As she stumbled out into the hallway she noticed Katherine and Sarah doing the same. They exchanged bleary eyed looks as they started shuffling downstairs.

Shut Up.” Orpheus’s Command came from the living room and shook the glass in the house but it did silence the alarm. When the living room came into view Jane saw that Orpheus had probably been up as Lily and he were still dressed and there was a plethora of snacks on the coffee table. “I swear I’m going to kick Sage’s teeth in for not installing an off switch for that thing.”

“If you don’t I will.” Jane replied as she sat down on the couch and waited to find out what was going on. “So, what necessitated waking us all up?”

Sage’s voice came from the phone Lily was holding “A supervillain is making a power play. There are bots headed to every hero base or home. A number of them are coming for you guys and my mountain home is currently under siege. That triggered the red alert alarm and before you say anything Orpheus mine didn’t have an off switch either, I had to take a shotgun to it.”

“Alright girls it’s time to make a choice, do you want to fight the robots or just hit the panic button and sit behind a shield.” The girls didn’t even bother to answer they just walked outside and got ready to fight. Orpheus smiled and quickly threw on his worst clothing. As he walked outside he told the girls the plan “I’m going to go out and get shot at while I tear them to pieces. Use me as a distraction to wipe out anything you deem necessary.”

Jane readied the fire in her hands and started heating it up.  When she caught sight of the robots she was underwhelmed, there were only a hundred or so of them and they were all the basic bipedal humanoid model and there were none of the big ones that had attacked when Lianne had been at the house. At the thought of Lianne, she remembered the test fight she had had with Lianne. She cursed and wished she hadn’t held back so much but she just couldn’t bring herself to burn Heroine. Heroine had been a personal hero of hers and she just wasn’t ready to hurt her heroes. But robots, that was another story. Orpheus landed on the other side of the robots to get them to turn around and the girls attacked.

Lily hit them first, she gestured as if opening a box and the ground opened up underneath several of the robots. Once enough had fallen into the hole, Lily clapped her hands and the hole slammed shut. She followed the attack by creating a wall to shield her from the gunfire.

As the gunfire began to tear into the makeshift wall Sarah closed her eyes and analyzed the sound of the guns. After a moment of listening she settled on some kind of submachine gun as the robots’ primary armament.  With determined she created an updraft strong enough to send them sailing over the girls’ heads.

Katherine followed up Sarah’s defense by creating a jet of water and soaking the robots. It didn’t do anything to the robots but the guns they were soaked and most wouldn’t fire anymore. Katherine compressed the jet once they were soaked and started knocking the robots over as she swept it across their line.

The other girls had given Jane time to charge up her flames to unnatural temperatures and were rewarded with a new dawn as she unleashed the white-hot flames. A full half of the robots were vaporized as the flames flowed from her hands to where they had been standing.

The sound of tearing metal told the girls what Orpheus was up to and they prepared themselves for the next attack. Jane’s blast had disrupted the air current Sarah had created and it had completely evaporated the water in the area but as Sarah put back up her defensive updraft she noticed that several of the bots that hadn’t been directly hit were walking funny. Closer inspection revealed that their metal limbs had actually partially melted and were fused.

Her thoughts were interrupted by an explosion that was roughly the size of a two-story building engulfing the robots. “Well word is definitely out after that fire spout.” Orpheus joked as he landed next to them. His shirt was so full of bullet holes that it barely qualified as a collar but he seemed to be otherwise fine.  “I was going to give you girls until January to decide if you want to become heroes but it seems some asshole has forced the matter. The public is going to figure out that we are out here after that fire lit up the night and they will come with questions. So, I will preempt them, Are you four going to be The Elemental Four?”

Lily answered before the others could “No, I won’t be on a team that you aren’t on.” The other girls were not quite as attached to their teacher as she was but they all considered him to be a friend so they didn’t disagree.

Orpheus pulled out his phone and tossed it to them “Call Sage and tell him that he has a press conference to set up. I have to go do something before I am ready to join you, but do me a favor and tell him that I am not revealing my power’s name to the public. When I get back I will tell you what it is but I don’t want the focus to be on me during the conference.”

Lily was not about to let him jet off on his own again and managed to grab his hand as he took off into the air. “I’m coming with.” She said resolutely and he didn’t argue.

“I know.” He said calmly and took off. They were only flying a few minutes before Lily started feeling water hitting her face and she realized that they had stopped. She looked up to see the storm clouds above as Orpheus set down in a very quiet graveyard. “I came here just after I got access to my abilities back.” Orpheus explained as he produced an umbrella from behind a nearby tree. He held it over her as they walked to the cleanest grave in the place, it looked brand new. “I only had control of Command and Railgun at the time and I used Command for the first time here. It rewrote the area and now it rains here almost every day.”

Lily was listening but she was also distracted by the name on the grave “Here lies Mytha Mccallan beloved mother, the world weeps at her loss” she read it silently in her head and she knew where she was. She hugged Orpheus for support and he returned the gesture.

“Hi Mom, I guess I have a lot to say tonight. First off this is my girlfriend Lily. I’m sure you would have liked her but she has gone a gotten me to enter the hero scene so I’m sure you would have been ecstatic.” Orpheus sighed “That is the other thing I wanted to tell you. I’m going to become a hero.” The rest of the visit passed in silence until the clouds dissipated and they took their leave. Orpheus dropped off the umbrella in an umbrella holder that was built into the side of a tree and they flew back to the house.

Sage was waiting at the house when they got back. Wizard and Tank had also arrived and were surveying the damage that had been done to the robots. The adrenaline from the fight was still keeping the girls up and they were inside talking about potential names for the team. “Most of the time teams don’t pick their own names, the public picks them.” Sarah pointed out as the other two girls were trying to find a play off of Elemental Four.

“That is a problem for tomorrow or never as far as I care.” Orpheus said as he walked to his room to change. He hadn’t thought about his state of near shirtlessness until Tank had taken his shirt off upon seeing them flying in but now it was all he could think of. With a fresh shirt, he sat back down in the living room and Lily plopped down on his lap. “Alright we all need sleep so I will make this quick. I don’t have a word for my power I have a vague idea of what it could be called. With that information, I polled the guys outside what they would call it back when I got it. Wiz-kid suggested Power but that was just part of it. Tank and Sage eventually agreed on Origin and I think that gets the closest to what my power is or at least was supposed to be. I should demonstrate.” He turned his palm up and held it where they all could see “You have seen me use Railgun and Command but I have other powers. I learned Tank be figuring out why someone would want to do something even though it hurts them to do it.” A small flame leapt up from his hand “I learned a little about Fire from watching and helping Jane train. Same with Water, Air, and Earth, though I will admit I have more control over Earth than the rest.” He rested his hand on the seat again and continued “There is a more immediate method though. The reason I say Origin is the best fit is because when I kill a person with a power it feels like a piece of me comes back. I know everything about those powers. As of today, the only powers I have claimed that way are Darkness, Bomb, Brick, and Paragon. The power knows this and when someone comes at me with the intent to kill it pushes me towards wanting to kill them. With that said do you still want me on your team?”

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