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Friday, June 3, 2022

F³ Good at His Job

            Jet lag has nothing on lightning lag. Storms over the Atlantic were pretty thick this time of year, so we rode lightning almost like Spider-man across the New York city skyline. In less than two hours, we had crossed about seven time zones. Our late dinner in Amsterdam rewound into afternoon in South Dakota, right back to the scene of the crime.

            I didn’t check where exactly in the Black Hills we were, just a remote spot between two hills, and far enough away from Rushmore to avoid the tourists. We landed at the edge of the clearing I had made with my explosion. I shuddered, and not from the cold. My skin crawled at the place. I saw Jack shudder, too.

            Glad it’s not just me.

            “About time you got here,” Kate’s voice dripped superiority.

            “If you fix them,” Nat said, “we will all gladly be your bitch for a while, especially them,” she pointed at me and Jack.

            “I didn’t—” Jack began.

            “Reilly,” Anna Maria cut in.

            I smacked Jack upside the head.

            “Fucker!” Jack yelled.

            As someone also afflicted with the anti-matter lightning, I was the safest person to do so.

            I’m going to miss that job. I’m getting really good at it. High job satisfaction, too. But I’d much rather be back to normal.

            “I’ll cut to it; follow me.”

            We walked into the trees and upslope a little bit to a rock where a woman sat cross-legged in blue jeans.

            “Melissa,” Kate said. “This is the gang. Natalie, Anna maria, Reilly, and Jack. Gang, this is Melissa Nahimana.”

            Melissa pushed herself to her feet, standing over us. Long black hair with a couple of braids at her temples fell to her waist. She looked over all of us with a penetrating, eagle stare.

            “Okay, are you ready to apologize?”


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