Part 18

by CM Towns

   The window smashed open and Kestrel stepped in first to a small bedroom. She hollered that it was safe and in came Ichi Senshi followed by Gravity Woman who had been dangling them by the window. Gravity had suggested finding another entrance into the club and with the help of of the Intelligence Hub discovered that there was an office above the club floor that was linked up to an apartment. This renovation and construction paid for by the last club owner. Upon entering it was clear the room had been lived in.
   “Bathroom is clear,” Kestrel announced while Ichi looked through the dresser.
   “I got guns,” Ichi said.
   “Notebook here-written in a foreign language,” Gravity Woman said of the book by the bed. Ichi asked for it and leafed through.
   “Alien,” he commented.

   Ichi listened to his two teammates talk and then took a peak outside. Ichi had done little in the way of superhero work before this. Less than Gravity Woman and both were novices compared to Kestrel. It was chance crossing of paths that brought him to the attention of Reina Titán and Red Sprite. You can’t be a vigilante or superhuman in California without them knowing. Ichi considered the conversation his teammates were having before he started thinking on the two. Despite Gravity Woman having done this kind of work before she seemed unsure of herself at times. Though she seemed to hide that self-doubt behind a strong face. He then noted how calm Kestrel seemed. Kestrel acted like a warrior and that was no surprise. Both seemed like genuinely good, strong willed people. He liked them.
   Ichi’s mind got back to the job and wondered if there would be a fight coming up. He himself was pretty calm about fights. Even fights where the odds of going bad in a big, brilliant way were very present.
   Kestrel took out her crossbow, click the button to extend the limbs of the bow. She placed an arrow in and slowly opened the door. Gravity Woman stood at the ready with Ichi behind. Kestrel looked back and nodded, Gravity Woman then let out a brief of relief. Ichi Senshi followed behind the two as they entered a small kitchen and dining area.
   “Nice place they have here,” Kestrel said.
   “You really think so?” Gravity Woman asked.
   “Their right next to their job. Which is above a club. Good times. Especially if you want to pick up a quickie,” she replied.
   “Two doors. Both are reenforced,” Ichi observed.
   “Based on the schematic the one leading to the club is that one,” Kestrel stated while pointing in the proper direction, “I’ll go first again,” Kestrel continued as once more taking the lead.
   The trio made their way through a short hallway and Kestrel out the only other door. Once in she rushed forward and through. Ichi came in last and saw Kestrel attending to a woman tied to a chair while Gravity Woman made her way to the desk in the office.
   “Thank you so much. Who are you guys?” she asked.
   “We’re the good guys. You’re Caffrey right?” asked Kestrel.
   “Catherine Caffrey. I worked with Professor Miller,” she said.
   “You here alone?” Ichi asked.
   “No. They’re down there in the club. I don’t know how many. Plus a guard by the door,” Caffrey answered.
   Ichi Senshi checked the window, pulling back the curtain tiny bit.
   “How many do you see?” asked Gravity Woman.
   “Just one or two but this is not the bast vantage point,” he answered.
   “So do you know what they’re looking for?” asked Kestrel.
   “A statue,” she said before moving things around the desk, “This thing. The one calling the shots said it might alien magic.”
   “No surprise there,” commented Gravity Woman said.
   “These maps-you were helping look for it?” Kestrel asked.
   “They had been scouring the tunnels for a long time. I helped piece together a map based on symbols,” Caffrey answered.
   “You see this place right here-” Gravity Woman pointed, “That’s where the others went.”
   “We should call them,” Gravity Woman offered.
   Kestrel heard her phone and she pulled and answered it quickly.
   “Hey! We just…” Kestrel was interrupted.
   Her face was hard to read but Senshi figured he knew what was up. They had encountered Fliopt already.
   “Okay-we’ll take care of things here. I’ll call you back later,” Kestrel said.
   “Not going well on their side?” asked Gravity Woman. Kestrel shook her head.
   “Did any of us expect it to be easy? This Fliopt is obviously a smart one. Going to have to put a little more work in,” said Ichi Senshi.
   “I have no problem with kicking ass but it would have been nice for this one to be wrapped up neatly in a quick fashion,” Gravity Woman stated.
   “I told her they were close to the statues. Huntsman is going to meet up with them now and we’re going join up after we take care of the problems here,” Kestrel then said.
   “Excellent,” Ichi Senshi said summoning his sword.
   Gravity Woman shook her head.
   “You okay?” asked Ichi.
   “I got a bad feeling about this?” she replied to him.
   “You mean the bad guys outside?” Ichi asked.
   “No, I mean about the statues,” she answered.
   Kestrel remarked, “I share that feeling but we didn’t get into this business expecting it to be easy.”
   “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Punk ass elf got us running through sewers and tunnels, chasing around three steps behind. Makes me wish I was fighting drug dealers,” said Gravity Woman.
   “Hey now, Miss Zero G, time for that G to mean Gangsta cause we about to roll up on these fools. Ye’ heard?” Ichi said to her.
   “Please don’t ever do that again,” she responded before asking Kestrel, “Plan?”
   It was simple. First Gravity Woman took her place behind the door leading down to the club. She used her powers to push it out, knocking the guard down the stairs. Gravity Woman than tossed a flash grenade handed to her by Ichi. She ducked back inside as it went off. Ichi Senshi and Kestrel went passed her and out to the floor. Gravity Woman watched as they engaged the few bad guys below. Mostly human and a couple Harkin, six altogether. Kestrel fired a arrow point blank into a mans shoulder upon landing. She kicked him down and moved toward a blinded Harkin and caught them with straight punch to the chin followed by a leg sweep. Ichi Senshi was not even using his powers instead tackling one Harkin down and slamming his head into the ground before rolling off and meeting a thug with a rapid fire succession of strikes before hopping up and connecting with his forehead to their nose.
   Gravity Woman’s contribution was throwing the broken office door into a fleeing man all while being perched atop the staircase. Kestrel took out the last adversary with an arrow to the leg while Ichi started to handcuff them all.
   “I just texted the police. That good right?” Gravity asked.
   “You tell them we have Harkins?” Kestrel inquired.
   “Yeah!”
   “Lets grab Fliopts notes and then clear out,” Kestrel instructed.
   A short while later they were outside the club and Caffrey was thanking them. This was the most pleasing part of being a superhero-the look of gratitude and joy in a persons face after you saved the day. The trio departed with Gravity Woman using her powers to propel them through the air.
   “So we’re going after Fliopt now,” Gravity said.
   “And foiling whatever his plan is,” added Ichi Senshi.
   “You nervous Gravity?” Kestrel asked.
   “Of course I am. I get nervous when flying people around so let me concentrate,” replied Gravity Woman.
   “I got adrenaline pumping. I’m ready to do this!” Kestrel shouted, “What about you Ichi?”
   “I’m excited to get back on the ground. Flying this way is making me worried I will piss my pants,” he admitted.
   “Don’t worry juvenile, I got the both of you,” Gravity Woman said with a smile and Ichi laughed. The three flew off in the direction of Reina and the others, hoping to make it in time.

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