Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: BUSY (02/02/17)
- TITLE: I Never Have Enough Time
By Art Westefeld
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When my abilities manifested, Dad revealed himself to me when I went out for a hundred mile jog. He told me he’d train me in the use of my speed, and how to keep my secret.
Ten years later, as an adult, I unobtrusively went to his funeral. I assumed the role of Speedster, landing a serendipitous job at our local television station, so I’d have inside information to track super criminals, like my latest foe, Lady Freeze.
Lucia Blu’s story is tragic even by Super villain standards. She fell into a vat of experimental cryogenic fluid, used in the latest ‘get frozen to avoid death and wake up in the future’ scheme. The fluid reacted with her genetic structure and gave her the ability to shoot ice from her hands and eyes. Talk about a cold look, or cold hands/not such a warm heart.
Fortunately, with the friction created by my speed, her blasts can’t touch me, but they can slow me down as I try to run on a frozen surface. At the same time I was dealing with Lucia, two of my other super-powered baddies escaped the high security lock up created to hold super villains until the government figures out a way to negate their powers.
Well, Dad never said this job would be easy. The Drainer was actually one of Dad’s old foes, while Heatmaster was accused of starting the fire Dad died in. Both would be good tools to use against Lady Freeze. Drainer could siphon her cold energy, and Heatmaster was another obvious counterpoint. All I’d need to do is catch either one and get them to help me; maybe I could talk the courts into reducing their sentences.
In addition, I needed to put in an appearance at work, visit Mom in the hospital, and try to carve out some time for a normal life, like maybe going out on a date with Wally Blake, the newest guy at the studio. How come I, the fastest woman alive, can’t find enough time to get everything done?
I look at the watch under my glove as it slowly ticks the seconds away. I realize I’m only two blocks away from the hospital, where Mom is recovering from her stroke, and detour in that direction. I make a smoking rubber right turn on Eighth Avenue, and change to street clothes as I slow down to the point where people can see me clearly. My clothes have been treated with the same anti-friction chemicals Dad’s were, so they don’t burn while I'm running. This is a good thing for my modesty.
When I approached the front door, I heard the guard's radio announcing that the Super Crimes Unit had been called about two super villains robbing the pharmacy. Putting my press pass into the guards face, I asked, “Which two criminals were they calling about?”
His face went blank. “Not sure, Ms. Snow. The call said it was a broad in a silver body suit, and that guy in the green long johns. You know who I mean, right?”
“Yes I do.” I smiled at him, masking my real feelings about who was there, forcing me to delay visiting Mom. “He’s called the Drainer.”
I slipped into an unoccupied stall in the ladies' room and change back to my costume at normal speed. I knew from experience that Drainer could sense my speed energy, and I didn’t want to alert him. I sauntered to the elevator, pushed the button, entered, and waited as it descended to the basement, taking a full forty-five seconds to go just one floor!
With no need to conceal my entrance, I bolted into the pharmacy, where several staff had fallen victim to the villains' powers. Moving at Mach two, I slammed Drainer into Lady Freeze, knocking her out cold. I pulled a fire hose from the wall and tied up Drainer. A neat bundle for the SCU.
Time to go back upstairs and visit Mom. I’ll get the rest of my to-do list done later. I am the fastest woman alive, after all, right..
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