Lady Justice barrel-rolled to the right and flew higher as the green tracer fire opened up from the ground. The colonists had several machine guns pinning down Bravo company on the ground and shooting at her and Turbulence in the air when they came too close. She was still chasing one of the airborne Enhanced from the colony but he was trying to shake her off by pulling her in the colony’s killzone. She first thought he was a low-category Flyer, his flying skills were erratic and unpredictable, but when she fired her lightning at him, he dissipated. She was chasing an Air Elementalist, a powerful one if he could fly and become air at will. When the lightning passed through him harmlessly, he reformed and laughed at her. She ignored him and tried to remember all the known Air Elementalists in the region.
Lady Justice’s memory search was interrupted by the sounds of nearby gunfire. The other Enhanced was a Flyer but he was armed with a couple of pistols and shooting at Turbulence. What kind of super villain shoots a gun while flying?
Turbulence dodged the gunfire again and backed off. She was a lot faster than this Flyer but when she got close, he shot at her. She had already felt a couple of rounds bounce off her Harris fiber suit and helmet.
“C’mon, T,” screamed Lady Justice over the EComm. “Just grab him already. We don’t have time to play these games.”
“I’m trying!” yelled Turbulence. “If you haven’t noticed, he has a God-damn gun!” Turbulence knew there was no hiding it anymore.
“Mari,” Lady Justice said, trying to reassure Turbulence, “it’s just a pistol. You can do it.”
“I… can’t,” Turbulence admitted as several gunshots were heard over the EComm. “Oh shit, ahhh!”
“Turbulence, what is wrong?” she demanded.
“He shot me in the face!”
Justice looked up and smiled. His girlfriend and that hot Latina were up there showing the mundane agents how real Enhanced do it. Down here, he was doing what he did best. He had tracked down two of the snipers targeting Team Three, now protected by Scimitar’s shield. The JTF team engaged with the mundanes on the berm, trying to push the assault forward. He had to admit, Scimitar adapted well to his new role as JTF support. The swords were good weapons if he was a Tank, but the half-dome shield was more effective in a unit. It probably saved him from being dropped from the program.
Justice was trying to track down the Speedster that was leading the colony recon team. The two mundanes were easily taken out and incapacitated for pickup but the Speedster was darting around and hiding in the brush. From time to time, he would shoot at Team Three but last time he aimed for Justice, striking the tree next to him.
“Scimitar, drop your shield,” Justice called over the EComm.
“What? Are you crazy?” Scimitar yelled back.
“Just do it or I’ll break more than your wrists the next time we spar. I want him to shoot at you so I can find him. I can’t spot anyone if I’m dodging bullets.” Justice waited patiently as he only heard dead air. He already knew what the answer would be.
“Copy. If we get hit, Bravo CO will have both our asses,” Scimitar replied.
Justice smiled. He knew Scimitar would be a good boy and do what he was told. He made sure to put the fear of God in one of the recruits the first day to make things easier. Scimitar was chosen, Trauma volunteered herself, and the point was made, except for that prick, Larson. He screwed up all his plans.
He did not have to wait long. The Speedster was eager to get a JTF kill and fired a few seconds later at Team Three, now without their protection. Justice knew the Mosin made a huge fireball and was looking for it. He grinned, baring his perfectly white and straight teeth and charged on the sniper’s position.
The Speedster never saw the train coming. As he turned, a large, fast-moving shoulder hit him squarely in the chest, launching him in the air until he crashed back to earth, rolling across the grass, his arms and legs bleeding from open wounds through his torn clothing. He knew he was also bleeding internally.
“Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.” Justice just smiled at the pathetic weakling that resorted to using mundane weapons. He had waited for moments like this since he had his Reveal. His other missions had been under the guidance of Judge or Jury, but this time, he made the life or death choices.
“I know you. You’re that traitor Judge’s brat,” the wounded Speedster said when his vision became less blurry and he pulled his matted brown hair out of his face. “How does it feel to betray your own?”
“You should not talk about your betters like that, scumbag.” Justice became angry when the colony Enhanced mentioned his dad’s name.
“Oh, please,” the Speedster smirked. “We both know Jury is the only one with balls in your pathetic family. “
Justice paused when his thoughts returned to Judge, the most powerful man on the planet and a coward. After he had accidentally killed a bank robber during a training mission, Judge was against him joining the JTF. He heard his parents arguing night after night about him taking his rightful place as America’s protector. Finally, they agreed to publicly support him joining the JTF but they wanted him to find an Enhanced girlfriend first that would enroll with him. They said it would help his reputation after the mundane’s death and cool his temper.
“Your girlfriend even won the first practice,” the Speedster continued to taunt. “We all heard about it and laughed our asses off. You are just like your pathetic old man with women.“
Justice felt the rage build in him. No, he was nothing like his dad. He was the leader of Team Justice, not Lady Justice. All this stupid recruit team stuff was just JTF publicity bullshit. When they got out in the world on their own, she would do what he said. No one would disrespect the greatest Enhanced to ever live, not his girlfriend, not this criminal, and certainly not a punk-ass Category 1. That’s right, Larson. That little bastard was responsible for his elimination, the late night phone call from his mother yelling at him for embarrassing her, the humiliation, everything. Alaina thought he did not notice her pulling away earlier after their kiss when she saw Larson walking away.
“Larson,” growled Justice slowly. The injured Speedster cocked his head sideways, feeling sorry for this Larson, whoever he was, the target of this unbridled rage. It was the last thought he ever had.
“You are so fucking dead!” Justice held nothing back and charged forward.
Author’s note: New character artwork this week. Click for larger images.