There are moments when the life of a superhero is not a whole lot of fun. One of those times is when your arch enemy is suddenly made into the hero. What does that make you, then?
To be honest, what little superpowers I have are useless most of the time. Still, there have been times when they have come in handy. When this town was threatened by Dr. Marco, stealing the source of his powers was a great victory for us even if we could not use it ourselves. It reduced him from a supervillain to a mere human, and much more manageable a threat. The town was saved from certain destruction, and I was a hero for a day. It felt good, I must admit, but it is in the distant past.
Right now, I am watching our founding fathers jovially hand that source of power back to my arch enemy. The scene takes place in a festively decorated hall several stories below me. I, on the other hand, hide in the shadows, because there is no point in reminding the currently equally jovial Dr. Marco that his prime nemesis was ever siding with this town. Somehow he has managed an incredible political coup, crushing the defences of the town peacefully after he failed to bring them down by force. His campaign left the town leadership no other option but to welcome him with open hands. Stripped of resources, I can only hope they are not embracing their doom.
One thing is certain: with Dr. Marco's reign starting, there is no place for me in this town, and time will tell if the world itself is large enough for the two of us. I am well aware that I cannot challenge him now, but I simply could not miss this ceremony. It is the end of an era, and I have no idea what the future will bring.
After an eternity of sugary speeches given by everyone involved, a man in uniform walks to Dr. Marco on the speaker stand, carrying the slightly statuette-like object that has our beloved leaders are so eager to get rid of. I can almost feel a wave of static electricity making the hairs on my neck stand on end as Dr. Marco picks the statuette up and lifts it for the audience to see. Cheers and applause ensue. Oh well, it seems that he will not slaughter everyone on the spot at least.
In the flash of photography, for a moment it seems he glances up right at me, a wicked grin on his face. I freeze, and decide I have seen enough.
I start my descent down the side stairs, to sneak out through the back door and avoid the crowds. Suddenly, I hear steps coming up. I continue down, and meet a police officer on the landing one floor below. I do not recognize him, and there is something about him that bothers me. Maybe it is the black uniform, maybe it is just my nerves. Yet, when he brings up my name in an enquiring tone of voice, I shake my head to indicate I don't recognize the person he seeks, and turn on my heels. I decide to make my exit through the roof access instead.
I do not make it that far. The officer comes after me, and when I'm back on the hallway above ready to make a run for it, he tells me to freeze. I glance back and notice that he has a gun pointed at me. I stop and turn slowly, while I almost sprain my brain trying to gauge his intentions. "Yes, Officer?"
He smiles politely, possibly even apologetically, then utters five words that freeze the already chilled blood in my veins. "Dr. Marco sends his regards."
In the moment it lasts for him to press the trigger, I duck, and make a dash for the closest open side door. A second gunshot scratches my upper arm, and makes me see stars as I stagger into what appears to be a meeting room.
I hear steps behind me and almost stumble on a chair while trying to scramble for another door at the end of the room, hopefully leading out. A bullet hits the door only inches from my head, and sends splinters flying. The door is locked, of course; I turn to face the black-clad reaper walking towards me, and we both know the next shot will not miss.
A strange calm seeps into my mind, making space for mild curiosity. "I guess there is no way to talk you out of this?"
He shakes his head, still smiling politely. "It's nothing personal, I'm just following orders."
With that, he shoots me in the abdomen. I sink down on the floor, barely aware of my killer walking away to leave me to bleed to death.
Author's note: As you can see, it's another one of my fragment stories. I doubt I'll continue it, but if you feel I should, let me know and I can flesh the thing out. Thanks for reading.