Portal – Chapter 54

The bolt of lightning struck Justice in the chest and launched him in backwards. The sheet rock and brick were instantly pulverized as Justice impacted the wall and landed in the alley behind the club.

“You son-of-a-bitch, you murdered him,” Alaina cried, no longer able to hold her rage back and tears flowing down her cheeks as she followed Justice’s path of destruction. When she emerged outside, several bolts arced from her body in the sky  touching the power lines. The transformers exploded from the sudden surge in power, creating thousands of sparks raining down on Justice.

Justice hurt all over his body. The impact with Michael was nothing he had ever experienced, even against Judge’s strength or Jury’s telekinetic shield. What the hell was that freak? There was no way simple portals could do that. And now Alaina just lit him up with enough power to jump-start a small city. That girl was extremely powerful and she was out for his blood.

“Alaina, wait. Please, baby. Think about what you are about to do,” Scott said as he stood up slowly. Another hit like that and he would probably need to see Preacher. A few more and he would need the coroner.

“Don’t you dare fucking call me that, Scott. I stood up for you, put up with your bullshit, and all for what? You killed those mundanes in Chicago and needed the cover for it. I just wanted to live a normal life. I wanted none of this. I’m not losing a damn thing.”

Alaina could hear several people behind her, likely the other recruits. Mundanes were usually  too frightened to go anywhere near an Enhanced fight unless they had a death wish – and she was ready to kill Justice.

“Alaina, stop!” yelled Mariposa, “Don’t let this puta get you thrown in jail.”

“You better listen to her, Alaina,” Scott warned. “What do you think will happen when the JTF finds out you were whoring with a member of your team and started the fight.”

Mariposa charged, stopped only by Solid Copy grabbing her. She did not have physical powers so he did not need to morph to hold her back.

“You don’t talk like that to my girl, pendejo,” she screamed.

“Shut up, you dumb bitch. I’m trying to save all of our asses. If this gets out, they will recycle our entire class, and trust me, not everyone will make it. Alaina will go to prison and the JTF will find out about Net using his powers on the DJ booth. Or did you think I didn’t notice?”

Net shrugged his shoulders. “I don’t know what you are talking about.”

Justice narrowed his eyes. “Whatever, Terrence. I saw what I saw. I’m sure a Mentalist will confirm it.”

The group looked at Jason who only nodded.

“And you, dweeb,” Justice continued, pointing at Jason. “What do you think the JTF will do when they find out you hustled mundanes out of money at the pool table?” Jason looked down. He knew he was busted.

“Saving your ass again? You do that best, don’t you Scott,” Alaina jabbed.

“Just like your dad, Alaina. I’m showing you what real leadership looks like and not begging the JTF for forgiveness like Orbital Strike. You will resign from Team Leader when Prescott and Edwards return or the world will know exactly what happened here. Understood?”

Alaina had fire in her eyes until Scott mentioned her dad. That hit her like a punch in the stomach and the others were mumbling about her hiding that she was Orbital Strike’s daughter. She could kill him but she would not only spend her life in jail until Jury had her revenge, but she was also condemning the others to jail or a lifetime-ban on using their powers. If she did nothing, Scott would come out of this smelling like roses, just like always. The JTF would never risk losing their two best Enhanced agents in Judge and Jury or publicly damage the face of the next-generation of agents.

“You win, Scott,” Alaina said defeated. She could not prevail, not without massive collateral damage to friends and family.

“Cortex, get in there and start fixing those memories,” Justice ordered. “Net, the DJ equipment overloaded and exploded. Larson was standing the closest and took the brunt of the explosion. You can even make him some sort of hero, if you want. I don’t care. He’s dead now.”

—–

The police arrived a few minutes later to a scene of mass confusion. The crowd was lucky, a recruit class from the JTF was celebrating in the club at the time of the explosion. The class was doubly blessed by two healers, identical twins, that made the job  easier. The ambulances were loaded quickly thanks to Justice.

“Ma’am,” one of the officers said to Alaina at the end of the cleanup, her eyes swollen from crying. She had tried to find Michael’s body but too many mundanes were hurt and the structure was unstable. “I understand you are the leader of the group of Enhanced here.”

“For now,” Alaina answered, drained of all energy and spirit.

“The department and I would like to thank you for your assistance tonight. This explosion could have been a lot worse if you were not here. We have some moderate injuries, but everyone should make it fine.”

“Did you look everywhere? One of ours was missing after the…incident.” Alaina hardened up before she thought about Michael and cried again. She could not say it was an explosion. Scott was right on one thing, though, she was responsible for what happened.

The officer held up an evidence bag with shoes and a shirt. Alaina recognized them as Michael’s belongings. She remembered exactly what he was wearing while they were dancing together.

“We found these out back but whoever was wearing them walked away before we got here. We lost the trail at the street.”

Alaina felt her body shaking.