Secret Soldier

“Don’t move, Gaia. I don’t know what you’re doing in my city, but you still have crimes to answer for,” Spex yelled at the dark-haired woman. Gale Stone walked across the college campus searching for her daughter. She wore blue jeans and a black blouse, not her root-woven costume; she stopped walking and wondered how he recognized her. While in costume, long green vines replaced her shoulder-length black hair. Even her daughter was surprised when Gale revealed her identity.

“What’s your deal?” Gale asked vaguely. The hero didn’t quite look like one. He wore a well-tailored black suit with a bright blue tie, and a pair of thick, blue-rimmed glasses. She felt her node vibrate while she considered how to deal with him, then sighed. She knew it was from her daughter.

Sorry, sorry,” Gale thought. It was her way of knocking on Cadence’s mind. Gale had always respected Cadence’s mental boundaries. She could communicate telepathically with anyone on Earth, but she still raised Cadence the normal way; with lots of crying. On both their parts. “Did you just text me? I don’t want to dig through my purse right now.” While she thought, Spex continued talking.

“My deal? I don’t like villains roaming freely in my city. Are you going to turn yourself in quietly?” the suited hero asked.

“YES!” Cadence screamed in Gale’s mind. “Don’t hurt Spencer! I’m running to you!”

“Spencer?” Gale asked. “This stuffy Soldado is your boyfriend?”

Well?” Spex took a step forward. “Have anything to say for yourself, Gaia?”

He’s a Soldado?!” Cadence asked. Then, she ran out from behind a building towards Gale and Spex.

“I’m looking for someone,” Gale pointed at Cadence dashing in their direction. “There she is.”

“What!?” Spex’s eyes went wide the moment he recognized his girlfriend.

“She’s my mom!” Cadence said. “Please don’t hurt her, Spex.”

What are you doing?” Gale asked her daughter mentally.

Play along. I’ll explain later,” Cadence replied.

“Gaia is your mom!?” Spex asked. “You couldn’t have prepared me for that a little bit?” Cadence looked around at the bystanders, then tilted her head at Spex.

“What.. do you mean.. Spex,” she asked.

“My girlfriend’s mom is the most powerful, most evil villain in the world! That’s what I mean!” he said. He huffed angrily and pulled his glasses off. The suit and tie shimmered, the disappeared once the spectacles left his face. His blue jeans made Gale wonder how comfortable the suit was with them on under it.

“Spencer! What’s your deal!?” Cadence asked her boyfriend. She gestured around at the crowd who all picked that exact moment to look away at something else.

“She’s definitely your mom,” Spencer said. “What’s the problem now?”

“Your secret identity!” She said.

“Secret?” He asked. “Since when?” Cadence tilted her head at him.

“Since always?” she asked. “Even before I met you, everyone told me you liked to keep your identity secret.”

“It’s just a pair of glasses,” Spencer said. “I’m not trying to hide my identity; it’s the source of my powers.” To make his point, Spencer took a step back and put the glasses back on. His black suit appeared immediately, then it disappeared when he took them off again.

“Your strength, healing, and fighting abilities?” Gaia asked. “Those powers?”

“Oh yeah…,Cadence mumbled to herself.

“Yeah,” Spencer nodded.

“Well, Spencer, it seems we have a lot to talk about. Let’s get started,” Spencer was immediately swallowed into the ground. Gaia began sinking at a slower pace as if she were riding an elevator. “See you in a while, dear,” Gale blew a kiss to Cadence. She gave her mother one final warning.

“YOU BETTER NOT JIMMY HIM!”

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