As the months went on I began to discover that I had more powers growing within me then I or Doc. had ever imagined. Doctor Clark worked day and night to figure out just what they had done to me at Kent Co. Labs.
I remained in Gothtropolis where the crime rate was at an all time high. I remembered as a child I would play in these streets. They were safe back then. But no longer could people walk the streets. Fear and panic had set in throughout the city keeping people from enjoying all that this beautiful city had to offer. I am going to change that. I am going to take back this city and free it from its nightmare so that once again the people of Gothtropolis can walk free from fear and enjoy their home once again.
One night after a number of battles with burglars, car jackers and domestic dispute calls I’d begun to feel very weak. Using my new abilities had started to take its toll on me. Doc. Clark had been looking into ways to minimize the impact that using my abilities were having on me. I’d felt so ill I opted to take a nap and recuperate from the nights many events. I feel deep into slumber, into blackness till I woke in a seizure like shake. My body writhing back and forth on the bed. I could not get it under control and toppled to the ground with a crash. Doc. Clark came running into the room.
“Vivien!” I heard Doc. Clark scream as he knelt down beside me trying to stop my body from shaking. “Vivien. Can you hear me?” He asked.
My body was shaking so terribly that I could not verbally respond but managed for a short second to nod my head hoping he’d know I could.
“Ok Viv, We are going to get through this ok?” He began to take my pulse and check my temperature. My body continued to thrash on the ground. “Damn it.” I heard him scream as he ran off to god knows where. I began to feel tingling within my body like a surge of electricity was being sent through me from my head to my toes. Then suddenly I just stopped shaking and opened my eyes. Doc. was headed back to me with a look of confusion mixed with joy on his face.
“What the hell was that?” I asked coming to a seated position.
“I have no idea.” He said as he reached out his hand to help me up.
Taking his hand I asked. “Did you think I was a goner there Doc?” A glazed look came over his eyes and he looked directly at me his eyes widened still glazed.
“Yes Viv I did. Your heart rate jumped so high you should have gone into cardiac arrest. Your temperature was so hot your brain should have melted. I fear this may have something to do with your abilities and how they are changing and growing.”
“Doc? You ok?” I said as I let go of his hand.
The glazed look quickly disappeared. “I am so glad you are ok Vivien. I was almost ready to call 911 if you kept going. I knew you’d make it though.”
“That’s not what you said a moment ago.”
“Pardon?” He looked puzzled.
“A moment ago you said you thought I was a goner.”
“Wait. What? I said what?”
“Seriously? You don’t remember telling me that my heart rate should have given me a heart attack and that my temperature should have fried my brain?”
He took a step back. “I remember thinking those things. But I never stated them out loud Vivien. Were you in my head?”
“Listen Doc. You said those things to me. You took my hand to help me up and I asked and you spoke simple as that. No I was not in you freaking head and I resent the accusation.” I paused for a moment to show him my displeasure. “So do you think this has something to do with the drugs Doctor Wolf gave me?”
“I have no doubt that your body is changing due to what he did to you. I need to find some way to get back into his labs so I can see if I can locate all his documentation on you. Only then will I fully be able to understand what he did to you.”
I trusted Doc. Clark and my abilities never warned me against him but for some reason in this moment my gut was telling me he was not being all that up front with me. Grabbing him by the arm I spun him around. “How much did you really know about what he was doing to me at Kent Co. Doc?” I asked.
The glazed look returned to his face as he stared at me. No not at me I could see it now. Through me. He was staring through me like he didn’t really see me. I kept my hand upon his arm and asked again.
“Vivien.” He spoke softly. “I knew there could be things that could go wrong. The drug was extremely new and experimental. Doctor Wolf had informed me it would help your mental state to clear itself. Help you to focus on things. Help you to get past your demons. I didn’t know he was doing other things to you while you were in his care. I am so sorry.”
I let go of his arm and confusion once again set in on his face. “What did you just do?” He asked.
“I’m not sure Doc. I think I am changing again. When I touch you a glazed look comes over your face and if I ask you something you flat out tell me.”
“What did you ask me? I do not recall us speaking just now.”
“I asked you how much you really knew about what Doctor Wolf was doing to me.”
“I swear Viv. I didn’t know he was doing further experiments on you.”
“I know. You told me the truth when I asked and I believe you.”
“Wait a minute. After all we’ve been through you actually believed I had something to do with all of this?” The look of anger and shock on his face made me take a step back.
“Ok I will be honest with you since you were honest with me. Yes for a spilt moment I thought maybe you might not be telling me the whole truth. Satisfied?”
“Your abilities should have taught you by now that I am not the enemy Vivien. But you now seem to have a new ability and you used it against me without permission so no I am not satisfied. I am angry as hell that you would have done what you did to me. I am your friend Viv. I am here training you and teaching you and helping you and here you are getting new abilities and using them on me.”
“Whoa wait a minute here. First off I had no idea I HAD a new ability. Second I didn’t do it the first time on purpose and thirdly.” I paused then growled. “Can you fucking blame me??”
He sighed. “I should be able to blame you but after everything you’ve been through I guess I should know by now that you may still have trust issues. I am sorry you felt that way about me though Vivien. I would never hurt you.”
“I know that now and I promise if this IS some new ability I will not use it on you again.”
“I am pretty damn sure this IS in fact a new ability. Now we just got to test it out some more and find out.”
Just then Doc’s computer began to ding like crazy. He’d set up a monitoring system to keep a watch over the city and look out for violent crimes. Doc ran over to his desk and clicked on his mouse reading what was on the screen. Nodding his head he spun his chair around and with a geeky smile said. “Looks like this is a job for Superviviente.”
“Your stealing lines from Superman now Doc?” I laughed.
“He can’t have all the fun now let’s go. Gunshots fired over on 9th and Skinner. Possible fatality. We need to move fast if we are going to find the perp.”
“Spoken like a real detective. Sure that being a doctor was your true calling?” I laughed.
“I can be a jack of all trades. Master of nothing.” He laughed. “Don’t forget your hood.”
“Yeah speaking of that. I really need to new um.” I paused as what I was about to say made me feel ridiculous. “I was thinking maybe I needed a costume. You know. To hide my identity better.”
“You’re really taking this superhero thing seriously. What do you have in mind?” He asked as we got into our van and sped off to the crime scene.
“Honestly. I am not even sure.” I began to laugh. “I feel so stupid. Would I have to wear tights I ask myself when thinking of it. What colors should I choose? Mask or no mask? Face paint perhaps?” I couldn’t stop laughing as I spoke the words.
We arrived on the scene with a heavy police presence already there. Doc and I had to be careful not to get in there was as there was already rumblings within the precinct of a vigilante roaming the streets of Gothtropolis. We stood around with the other curious bystanders and listened to everything we could catch. Doc. leaned over to me and whispered into my ear. I nodded and we walked off down the street. A lone officer sat against his car riffling though his notebook. I walked towards him.
He looked up. “Can I help you ma’am?”
“I hope so officer. I am sorry if I am disturbing you.”
“I can take a break. What can I help you with?”
I extended my hand to him. “My name is Lisa and I was wondering if I may ask you something?”
“Sure thing Lisa.” He said as he took my hand and the glazed eyes took over.
“Do you know what happened here tonight?” I asked as I continued to hold his hand.
“A murder.” He replied staring right through me.
“Who was murdered? Do you have any suspects?”
“Big time lawyer named Stephen Simpson from up town. Don’t know who killed him but we think it might be the man who called it in. When we arrived on scene he was sitting next to the body looking quite perplexed. When we asked how he’d come across the body he was unable to tell us. Said he couldn’t remember how he’d gotten there.”
“Where is the man in question?”
“They’ve taken him to the station for further questioning. They are trying to get a doctor to look at him.”
“Why do they want a doctor to look at him?”
“You know a shrink kind of doctor. Too see if he is crazy or not.”
Doc. Clark tapped me on the shoulder then came closer and whispered in my ear. I nodded.
“Can you do me a favor officer? I know of a great shrink type doctor that could help. I want to know if you can call it in that he is on the way?”
“No ma’am I can’t do that. Even if your guy is the best it wouldn’t be my call. Sorry.”
Shrugging to Doc. I looked back to the officer.
“Anything else you can tell me about what happened here tonight?”
“There was a weird smell in the alley when we walked down. Almost like tarnished silver. The man sat next to Simpson’s body also had that same smell all over him. We couldn’t figure out where it came from and after awhile it just disappeared.”
“Thank you officer. You’ve been very helpful.” I released his hand.
He snapped out of his daze. “Oh I am so sorry Lisa. I must have zoned out for a second there. What was your question again?”
“I was just wondering if you knew where the nearest theater was?”
“Oh yes not that far actually. Down two blocks right there at Emily and Jane.”
“Thank you so much officer.” I said as Doc and I walked away. I turned to Doc as we were walking and sighed. “Ok so I can get people to tell the truth to me but can’t make them do anything I want them too. Where is the fun in that?”
“Vivien.” Doc said frowning his brow. “This is not suppose to be fun. This is not a game.”
“I know Doc. I was kidding. Man don’t get all broody Batman on me now.”
He laughed. “I only wish I had as much money as Master Wayne.”
“Speaking of Batman.” I paused. “I think we need a new batcave. Ours is not really equipped to do what we are wanting to do. Don’t you agree?”
“Absolutely. But where would we ever get the money to upgrade to a better batcave?”
“You let me work on that one Doc.”
“Nothing illegal Vivien.” He warned.
“Do I strike you as the type to do something illegal.”
“Actually you do.” He said with a smirk.
“Wow honest and without me having to get all touchy feely.” I said laughing.
We walked further down Skinner Street till we came to an alley way that would get us to the police station quicker. Doc had a plan and if his plan actually worked it would give him access to the perp for questioning. We talked on our way about what could have caused the tarnished silver smell in the alley. Both of us were unable to come to any logical reason that smell would have been so strong but last for such a short period of time. When we finally reached the police station Doc said it might be best if I stayed outside and waited just in case anything went sideways.
“Seriously Doc? You do remember what I can do right? I think it might be safer if I go in first and scope the place.”
“Now who’s being serious? Vivien scope the place? Really? It’s a police station for pete sake.”
“Still no harm in me checking it out before you go in. Just sayin.”
“Fine we will go in together but remember I do all the talking. If this is going to work you need to be quiet. Understand?”
We walked up to the front doors of the station and proceed in. At the counter we were greeted by a friendly female officer. Her badge said Officer Lane. I couldn’t help but chuckle since Doc and I had previously cracked the Superman joke and now here before us was officer Lane. If her first name was Lois I was surly going to peep my pants in laughter but I had not the courage to ask.
“How may I help you sir.” She said with a huge smile.
“Hello Miss Lane. My name is Doctor Steve Rogers from Solitude Heights Mental Institute. I am here to meet with the man who was brought in from tonight’s shooting of Mr. Stephen Simpson. ”
“Oh yeah, they told us someone would be coming. Right this way Mr. Rogers. May I ask who this is?” She said pointing to me.
“This is my new intern Christine Evans. She will just be observing and taking notes for me if that is alright?”
“Yeah whatever you need Doctor.” She led us down a hallway to one of their interrogation rooms. “You want an officer in the room with you?” She asked.
“That will not be necessary Miss Lane but thank you kindly.”
“There’s a buzzer right here next to the door. If you need anything or are ready to go just press it and someone will be right now. I’ll station and officer outside the door just in case.” She walked out the door and we waited with baited breath for the click of the door latching shut. When it was fully closed Doc turned towards the man and took a seat across from him.
“I’m not crazy you know. I don’t know why they have brought you in.”
“Well Mr.? I’m sorry I seem to have lost your name in my notes. Please if you don’t mind.”
“James White.” He said as he bowed his head down.
“Ok Mr. White. Tell me. What happened here tonight?”
“Please call me Jim. Mr. White sounds so impersonal. And to be honest Doctor. I have no idea.”
“Ok Jim. Please call me Steve. What do you mean you have no idea?”
“I was at a gentleman’s club having a few drinks after work and was just about to leave when a lady approached me. We had a couple more drinks shared some laughs and she asked me if I might want to head back to her room. This women was beautiful and I mean look at me. I am just your average joe. Women like that don’t approach me so I was all for heading back to her room. It was like a once in a life time experience. Something to share with the guys. You know? We got to her room. She poured another drink and then I was in the alley with the dead guy.”
“Do you know the dead guy?” Doc asked.
“Never seen him in my life. I pulled my cell phone out and called 911 immediately. I was so confused and dizzy I had to sit down. When the cops showed up that’s how they found me sat next to a dead man I’d never laid eyes on before.”
Doc turned to me with raised eyebrow then shifted in his seat glancing back and forth between Jim and myself. If this was some sort of code I was not catching it. Scrunching his lips together he gave me an even harder look. I looked at him puzzled. He finally stood up from his chair and walked towards me.
“One moment Mr. White. I mean Jim. I just need to confer with my intern.” Doc walked me to the furthest end of the room into a corner.
“What are you doing?” I asked still confused.
“We really need to work on some signals Viv. What is your chest and gut telling you about him?”
“I’m not getting any feelings from him. He seems to be a good guy.”
Doc scrunched his mouth up again. “Ok.” He said as he turned and walked back to the table.
“Can you describe the women Jim?”
“No I mean like height, hair color, eye color. That sort of thing.”
“Tall and beautiful.”
“Jim you still with me here?” Doc laughed. “I mean details.”
“Just beautiful.” He said confused. “Why can I not remember anything else? Oh man Doctor do you think I AM going crazy?”
“No Jim I don’t.”
Jim began to panic he jumped from his seat and began to hit his head screaming “Why can’t I remember? Why can’t I remember?” I looked over to Doc and he knew just what I was about to do. Our signal was apparently on point in that moment. Walking closer to Jim I placed my hands around his. “Jim it’s going to be ok. You can trust me ok. You’re going to be fine.” Jim looked up at me tears forming in his eyes. Nothing about this man screamed killer to me but we had to be sure. With my hands still placed over his I asked.
“Tell me Jim what did the beautiful women look like?”
You could see he was desperately trying to picture her shaking his head he looked down at me. “I can’t really see her. It’s like she is shrouded in a silver shadow.”
“That’s ok. Tell me what you can make out through the shadow. Don’t strain yourself just relax and breath and tell me what you see.”
“Dark hair. It was down and over one shoulder. Silver dress. Long legs. Red lips.” He began to strain to see more. I clutched his hands when all of a sudden the door swung open and in walked a man. I quickly let go of Jim’s hand turning towards the door.
“Excuse me? Who the hell are you?”
“Who the hell are you?” I asked.
“I am Doctor Alexander from Solitude Heights and who are you? And why are you talking to my patient?”
“I am so sorry Doctor Alexander. There must have been some confusion at the institute. I was sent to interview this man to determine if he was insane or not. I had no idea he was your patient.”
“He escaped last week and has been on the loose ever since. I am here to transport him back to the institute to await a hearing to determine if he will stand trial for this murder.”
“Again my deepest apologies Doctor Alexander. We will get right out of your way.” Doc place his hand on my back and was practically shoving me out of the doorway when Doctor Alexander stopped us.
“I’m sorry I didn’t get your name?”
“Doctor Steve Rogers sir. I am new at Solitude Heights. Transferred in from Blue River Mental Asylum.”
“Never heard of it. Where is it located?”
“Never heard of that either. Ok get out of here and let me do my job. And you best not be screwing up back at the institute or I will have your job.”
“I will be sure to stay completely out of your way Doctor.” Doc said as he pushed me through the door and we semi ran down the hallway.
“Smallville? Really Doc.”
“I had to think fast and it was the first damn name that popped into my head ok.”
“You do know that Smallville is a real place right? It’s in Kansas.”
“Shit. Now you tell me.” He laughed.
Without warning my chest began to burst in pain. I nearly fell over but Doc caught me. “You ok?” He whispered. “Just keep going I will catch up. Something is wrong.” I said. “I’m not leaving you.” He said sternly. “Trust me. Get out now. I am right behind you.” Doc took off towards the front doors and I ducked in behind a wall sharp to my right as police officers ran out the door calling for Doctor Rogers. My chest ached and my head began to throb. That’s when I saw it. Long, shimmering, Silver. I glanced up to see a beautiful women staring at me. She wore a silver dress. He hair thick and dark was pulled up into a shaggy bun. Her lips as red as blood. She smirked at me. I tried to move but the pain was unbearable. She began to laugh as she turned and walked away. When she was finally out of my sight the pain subsided. Running out the door I tried quickly to find Doc. I worried the cops had caught up with him first. I ran as fast and hard as I could when I saw the flashing of headlights up ahead. Please be Doc. I thought to myself. Sure enough he had procured a car for us.
“Hurry get in.” He whispered.
Jumping into the car we sped off into the darkness. I clenched my chest as it lingered with pain.
“Care to tell me what happened in there?” He asked.
“I saw her.”
“Who? The women Jim was referring too?”
“Yes. Her. The Silver Shadow. She laughed at me Doc. I think she knows who I am and what I can do.”
“Let’s not worry about that just yet. Let’s get you back to the loft and sort it all out there.”
“That’s fine.” I said slumping back in my seat.
Back at the loft I plopped down on the sofa and placed my hands in my hands.
“The Silver Shadow eh?” Doc chuckled. “We going to name all the villains now?”
“Why not. You named me.”
“True enough. So why the Silver Shadow?”
“It was what Jim has said that he couldn’t make her out because she was shrouded in a silver shadow. So that’s what we will call her. And for the record I do NOT for one moment believe Jim is a mental patient.”
“I am in total agreement with you. There was something off about Doctor Alexander. Almost like he was…” his voice trailed off.
“Being mind controlled!” I yelled as I jumped up. “That must be her power.”
“Ok so how do we go about finding the Silver Shadow and stopping her?”
“I have no idea Doc. We need more sidekicks. You know like a League or something.” I am going to bed. See you tomorrow.
“Very well. See you tomorrow. Hope you feel ok Viv.”
“I will once I get some sleep.” I walked into my room and threw myself onto the bed. Quickly I was surrounded by silence and darkness.
“Vivien….Oh Vivien. Can you hear me?” I heard a voice in the darkness. The voice began to laugh and I quickly remembered where I’d heard that laugh before. It was her. She did know who I was. “Vivien. I have a secret to tell you. I am going to kill you.” She laughed. My chest began to hurt as her laughter grew louder and louder in my ear. Suddenly I was shaking uncontrollably. The seizure had returned. Her laughter echoed through my brain as my body thrashed around on the floor. I heard Doc smash through my door screaming my name. He was almost drowned out by her laughter. “I’m coming for you.” She cackled.