One year since the opening of Olympus.
So much has happened it seems like a decade not just a year.
We lost Webs and Brawler. I will let someone else tell the tale of how they died but they went out as heroes should, in battle doing what is right.
Geo quit Apollo's team, it was just not for him.
And I met Sif.
She was 19, I was 29. Problem #1
She was super strong with no combat knowledge, and I was her teacher. Problem #2
Within one week of meeting me, she announced that we were going to be together, MetaBabies were mentioned! Damn Big Problem #3
Don't get me wrong, I love kids. I am not a bad guy so someday sure. But now? In case you had not noticed we were in the middle of a war.
About every other week someone tried really hard to kill me. So far they had all failed but who knows? Did you know I have a special solvent that I use to clean dried blood and gore off of my hammer?
I am on my third jug.
My plan was just to avoid the whole thing. I trained her, spent time with her as part of a group, and figured she would get over it.
Like that was going to work.
She is a natural, ever since the first day she picked up a sword people have said that. As far as the science boys and girls can tell we have the same basic strength. Since I have 4 inches of height, and about 50 pounds on her, I am stronger, but not by much.
It came time for her to take a name, or for us to give her one. Heimdall, Balder & Freya had been using their new names for some time.
She announced she was going to be Lady Sif.
Sif, the Norse Goddess who was the wife of Thor.
No fucking way!
I ranted at her, I feel bad about it now, but I did it. I told her she would have that name over my dead damn body. I said I was sick of this stupid crush. It was a big scary Meta-filled world out there so deal with it. I was not her daddy, and I was never going to be.
Now you would think that would have made her cry right? Wrong.
Grabbing her sword she headed out of the gym. She was cinching it over her shoulder when I asked her where she was going.
"To find Pulsar."
Damn. I followed.
Pulsar was in his office off of Central, Psyche was with him.
Sif did not waste much time, "Sir, I have requested the codename of 'Lady Sif', short form 'Sif'. Thor has refused. I contest his refusal and request approval of my choice by you. Sir this is no whim, this name matters to me. It has mattered since I was 10 years old and I first read her stories. Somehow I knew that name, that example, would matter. And here the fuck I find myself with a sword on my back and arms that can juggle cars."
"Sif is my name, and if Thor really objects then I have a suggestion. We go outside, he draws his hammer and I draw my sword. If he wins, he can pick my name. If I win, I am Sif. But I must warn you my God of Thunder, I will kill you to be her."
"Psyche, would she really do it, kill him?" asked the bossman.
"Are you kidding me?" replied Psyche with a hint of surprise.
"Ok, she wins. Sorry Thor old buddy. Log the name Lady Sif."
So she won that battle, and stopped talking to me for a while.
I refuse to live my life in confusion, and I had no idea what was going on with her. So I put it out of my mind and focused on the job. I saw her, we trained, all neutral, even mildly friendly at times.
Pulsar was running a small mission and I had something I had to do. He asked me to suggest one of my new superstrong companions to fill in for me. Without thinking I suggested Sif. She was the best, and this was the job after all.
Mistake. Big big mistake.
She did well, of course. So well that the next time Pulsar felt the need for some extra strength, he assigned her without asking me. Sitting on the plane and she plops down next to me with a big smile on her face.
I was glad she was next to me with the Dinosaurs were charging down at us, I cannot lie about that.
Then came the big day. Pulsar was expanding the ranks of Justice and all the strong boys and girls were going to compete for a slot. Gloves, pads, yeah, but real fights, trust me. Everybody wanted that job, and we watched very closely from the sidelines to prevent, well death.
It was a hell of a day, a good day for people like us. Sif won her early fights easily, and it came down to her and one other.
Eventually you would come to know him as Orion.
He is not nearly as strong as Sif, but he had mastered Jeet Kune Do, before he became a Meta. For those non-martially inclined people reading this, that style of martial arts was created by Bruce Lee.
That power combined with that skill was simply amazing to see. Everyone always assumed he was an Acrobat but he was not. He was like me, a superman.
Sif and Orion faced off.
They engaged in three rapid exchanges. She hit him once, he hit her five times.
They circled, at that moment I thought she was going to lose.
My fears seemed to materialize as Orion drove his next attack home. A hard spinning kick sent Sif down to the ground.
She did an odd thing then, she rolled and kept going until she reached the edge of the mat.
She lay there, panting, obviously hurt.
The Lady Sif got to her feet. I really wish I could describe the look on her face. Not angry, but so fierce. Determined. I guess that is the best I can do.
The engaged again, he was still in command of the fight but she pulled one hell of a tricky move that changed that.
I have watched this from every angle, zoomed and slowed, so I know exactly what happened.
Sif threw a blow with her right hand, a full on attack properly balanced and executed. She had put her whole body behind it as one is taught. Orion had to, and did, block it, shifting his body to absorb the hit and not loose his own balance.
Following a split second behind the first blow she struck out low with her left fist, aiming for his body.
Now everybody will tell you that the second blow cannot do much. All your power is focused in the first and there is just nothing behind the second.
Except MetaHuman strength, and the determination of a Goddess.
The blow connected, 2 ribs cracked, Orion went down.
I pronounced her the winner, Pulsar welcomed her into Justice, and that was that.
She and I became friends again. Not really close, but we were on the same team, she was helping me to train other Metas, we saw each other quite a bit.
Day 357 arrived, the one year anniversary of the opening of Olympus.
We planned a party. Well when I say we I mean Janice, Erin and a small army of other people.
I taste-tested a bunch of stuff, they said that did help.
Beginning at 12 Noon on 357, and continuing until 6am 358. Held in a special structure that Geo created that was dubbed Valhalla upon completion. I am sure you have seen pictures of it, it is a stadium really, with the world's largest stage.
He found the largest performance stage in the world, and made his three times larger. Put it this way, Atlas, at his full height can not only stand on the stage, he has room to move around!
We were celebrities at this point, and everyone who was anyone wanted to go to this particular party.
So what Admin did was to list every performer, every traveling show, every band, everybody that offered to play the party in a database. Any resident of Olympus over the age of 15 could vote on a selection of choices. We picked the music, the handful of shows, and even the famous people who would be in the audience along with us.
It was really something. No cameras, no reporters. Just friends.
Everyone who came to the party who was not already a regular visitor to Olympus had to agree to a telepathic scan. We minimized the depth of what the PsiInt people would be seeing I must admit. It is a scary thing to have happen if you really understand it.
Oddly, most of the people who wanted to perform or attend did not seem to be all that worried about having someone poke about in their brain. Psyche told me that most of them really did not have any idea how much was being read.
Most famous people in the world, and they know less about us than a kid on a street corner.
We ate every six hours but there was plenty to munch between times. Drinking, we did a lot of drinking.
Pulsar and Psyche got together and planned a little special security. The speedsters would have one of their member running missions off of their List. We did not want to completely interrupt their rescue and other helpful efforts. One speedy boy or girl would be on Olympus patrol. Looping around our entire territory, and inside the walls. They would rotate these positions every 30 minutes.
Psyche laid down the law for the whole group. "If you are not on duty, you will be at the party, and you will be VISIBLE. Stand, sit, talk, whatever, but visible."
They did pretty well.
Over the course of the 18 hours they collectively snuck out of the party 137 times to run a quick mission off of the List, or to join whoever was patrolling to just run.
Psyche was pleased, so I guess it was cool.
Sif was there of course, enjoying her still new status as a member of Justice. We danced.
You have seen us fight, but you have never seen us dance. We had a whole section of Valhalla set up for our kind of dancing. People who could fly, or jump rooftops, played for once. It was a scene from days long past. When gods lived on the real Mount Olympus, or when the rainbow bridge still lead to Asgard.
I did not make any sudden decision, it just happened.
Sif and I kissed.
The music stopped, the people stopped. I am not making this up.
Speed had been watching, and when our lips met he stopped the music.
The kiss did one of those forever things.
When we did finally realize that others still existed in our universe we both blushed.
They clapped, and cheered.
And that is all I am going to tell you about that.
The party was great, long, and few people made it all the way, but it was without incident.
Best damn day of my life.
The tale of Pulsar and the MetaHumans will continue in MetaWar: Changes.