Date: 12 November 2035
Emma walked down to Wesley’s lab, heading straight to the main computer. Ignoring everything, she typed in several commands. A sound is heard and she turns around to see a circular panel rise from the ground. Inside was the suit.
Slowly Emma took off her clothes and started dressing into her suit. First came the shirt and pants. At first she thought they would be too big, but they quickly shrunk to fit her. Then she put on her boots, snapping the leg protections on. The arm braces came next, and after that, her gloves. She snapped on her utility belt and attached her retractable whips to her hips. Then she picked up her mask and carefully attached it to herself and the visor after that.
Emma looked at herself in the mirror. She looked… wrong. Her red hair stood out too much against her black and silver suit. Then she remembered this hair product. It was a spray-on hair colouring that came out after only one wash. Thankfully she had some black colouring in her room, leftover from crashing the Food-Fight party. Shadow Traveling there she quickly put it on, and disappeared.
Date: 12 November 2035
Five men sat in the abandoned shipping yard, all waiting for their contact to arrive. They were all still shaken up from earlier that night, when they saw that demon come from the shadows. The men sat in silence, none of them really wanting to talk.
They all shot up as a pipe rolled towards them.
They quickly turned around, looking at the now broken crate.
“Whoever is there come out!” one of the men shouted into the dark.
“Knock … Knock,” they heard. The voice was all around them, neither male nor female. Just a sharp Echo.
“Who’s there?!” another man shouted.
“Boo” The voice echoed again.
“Boo who!” another man shouted, quite stupidly. Where was the voice coming from?
“Why you crying?” the voice asked before laughing. Long and hard the voice laughed all around them.
“Show yourself you little bitch!”
There was a small silence then, “Woof woof. Woof woof…” All around them dogs started barking. Real, actual dogs. Dogs they couldn’t see.
The men started to back into a circle. All of them standing back to back, staring into the dark. They had some weapons. Pipes and wrenches, baseball bats and brooms. One of them had a gun which he started firing into the dark.
On and on he shot, but he only hit metal. It was only long after he used all his bullets did they realize the barking had stopped. There were no more sounds.
“Did you get it?” one man asked.
“I don’t kn-” he stopped midsentence as the men moved out of the way. Something was raining on them.
It was the bullet casings.
Slowly the men backed away. But when they heard yet another sound they all turned and ran to the door. Only to find someone standing there.
It was the Cloaked Figure from earlier. It looked different, maybe some added metal, but it was definitely it.
“You recognize me? I’m surprised. I didn’t think… creatures with such small brains would be able to remember anything.”
“We’re not afraid of you!”
“And yet, two of you have already wet your selves and all of you are shaking all over…. I must say that I find it interesting to see that you think you can defeat me with brooms. What are you? Housewives?”
“Why you little-”
“Let’s play a game shall we. You hide. And I’ll seek. You have the count of ten. One”
It kicked open the doors, revealing the outside world. (“Two”) The men ran past her, all of them dropping their so called weapons. (“Three”) Two of the men ran towards the water. (“Four”) Another two ran towards the street. (“Five”) The last man ran to his car. (“Six”) They all still heard the demon. (“Seven”) The man started his car. (“Eight”) Pointing it at the Cloaked figure and stepped on the gas. (“Nine”) He got closer and closer. (“Ten”) And it disappeared.
Emma watched as the man drove straight into the crates, knocking himself out. She looked towards the men who ran to the water. One didn’t know how to swim and had started to drown. She quickly fished him out of the water and laid his unconscious body on the pier. She watched as the other man swim to one of the small red markers flouting in the water. She Shadow Travel herself there, sitting calmly as he looked up and screamed. Emma grabbed his head and hit it against the marker before dumping it by the other two.
She found the other two fairly quickly. They were resting. Chuckling to themselves. Obviously they thought she was no longer after them.
“BOO!” She said as she appeared behind them. They turned swiftly around, one throwing a punch her way. She grabbed hold of the fist as well as the other man’s shirt. She pulled the shirt down as she brought her knee up, slamming it into his jaw. She let him go and took her now free fist and socked the first man in the face.
Both lay at her feet, unconscious.
She could have killed them. In fact she could have done worse than just knock them out. It’s not like they didn’t deserve it. She could take all the men and just throw them into the sea, watch them drown- but no. She couldn’t do that, not really.
Sighing, Emma tied the five men together and Shadow Travelled to the police department, hanging them in front of the door. Attached to one was a note:
“I’m sure Mr Price will be able to identify these men.”
Date: 13 November 2035
“-how long are you going to be abroad?” Wesley asked, his phone trapped between his ear and his shoulder as he buttoned his shirt
“Only a few days. We got intel that Central is trying to do something they’re not allowed to,” Percy replied.
“Again. You’re not supposed to know about that and what ‘something’?” Wesley replied, grabbing his tie.
“We’re not sure, but we think it that something to do with her ‘kind’,” Percy replied. Wesley’s eyes slid over to the young girl.
Emma was lying back on the small armchair, sun glasses skewed, mouth open, completely asleep. In her hands was a newspaper. The headline read: The Living Nightmare – All Should Fear the Dark. The photo showed the five men hanging of the ceiling, in front of the police station. The article went on to explain the men’s testimonies, of what the cloaked creature did to them. In the last paragraph people are told that the five men had awoken that morning screaming and raving.
“What exactly did you tell her?” Wesley asked, grabbing hold of the phone.
“The truth. I don’t trust her,” Percy said, his voice hard.
Wesley rolled his eyes, “If you did I’d be worried. Anyways I think she’s trying to impress you.”
“You’re talking about her little ‘adventure’ last night. That was for you,” Percy said teasingly.
“Is that why the men are currently in a psychiatric ward?” Wesley asked, only getting a laugh back. Suddenly there was a knock on her door and Wesley sighed, “I have to go.”
“I’ll be back in time for the press conference,” Percy told him.
“You better be,” Wesley said threateningly, growling as the knock came again.
“Bye Wes,” Percy said with a slight laugh.
“Bye Perc,” Wesley said and ended the call.
The third knock was half way when Wesley jerked open the door, glaring down at the policeman on the other side.
“Mr Price. I’m Officer Pres-”
“Officer Preston. I was under the impression that someone already spoke to the police,” Wesley said turned around and walked back to the bed. Sitting down, he pulled on his sock and shoes.
“Yes sir,” Person said, slightly nervous, “However new information has come to light and-”
“Yes. The five men were… delivered to you last night,” Wesley said, smirking slightly, “I’ve heard.”
It was only then that the officer saw Emma. He stared at the girl, surprise written on his face. How people could go through life being so obvious he didn’t know.
“What’s Miss Knight doing here?” he asked, pointing at her.
“She’s not here,” Wesley told him.
“But-” the man started, stopping when he saw the look on Wesley’s face, “Um. Yes, sir. (Clears throat) I need you to look these photos, pulling out the ones you recognize.”
Wesley walked over to the man, grabbing the stack of photos from his hands and quickly shifting through them, pulling out the photos of the five men that attacked him. Handing the two groups back to the officer he went back to getting dressed.
“Is that all?” Wesley asked.
“Yes, sir,” Preston half whispered.
“Good. Next time set up an appointment and talk to my lawyer first,” Wesley told him, anger lacing his words, “Now get out!”
Preston half walked and half ran out of the room, slamming the door shut behind him. Wesley sneered, grabbing the bag Percy left him. Afterwards he walked over to Emma, grabbed her shoulder and shook it.
“Emma. Emma! Wake up!” Emma jumped as she woke up, leaning forward she put her head into her hands.
“Dreams again?” he asked, rolling his shoulders
“No. Thankfully. Just a long night,” Emma said, rubbing her eyes, “How are you feeling?”
“Better,” Wesley told her, pulling his cufflinks in order, “You do know that whatever Percy told you, he meant it for both of us.”
“Yeah, yeah,” Emma said, rolling her eyes, “You two are sooo scary.”
Wesley smirked slightly at the girl’s attitude. She might talk tough, but he could see her hand shaking.
“Ready to go?” she asked him, glaring at his smirk.
“Yes,” Wesley said. Emma stood up and walked to the door. She stopped, however, when she heard Wesley speak.
“…Nice job last night.”
Date: 14 November 2035
Wednesday. Middle of the week. School. Complete hell.
“I just woke up from a month long coma and now I’m back at school. What’s wrong with my parents?” Emma whispered to herself as she got her books. All around her people were staring and pointing while whispering behind their hands.
“Emma!” a voice called from the crowed. It was Jessica.
“Jessica! How are you? I see you changed your hair,” Emma said as the other girl grabbed and hugged her, some gossip mag in her hands.
“Whatever about my hair! You’re top news!” Jessica said as she pulled away.
“Ok. I thought you loved your hair. And why am I top news,” Emma asked as more girls started to gather around them. Then Jessica showed her the cover of the magazine she had. It was a picture of her and Wesley as they exited the hospital. Wesley was all chirps and polish, while she looked like she hardly slept. Well she did hardly sleep, but still.
“The young, underage girl and the cold evil businessman. Forbidden love,” Jessica said.
“Forbidden nothing. He pretty much my boss.”
“Wait what! Your boss? But-but Doctor Friz in ‘Glossip’ say’s-”
“Doctor who in what now? You actually believe a woman who’s never even spoken to either of the two supposed ‘love bird’?” a bland voice asked from the back of the crowed. It was June.
Slowly she came forward as everyone parted a way for her and stopped in front of Emma. Everyone moved away from the two. Many of them are part of Emma’s dad’s dojo and had seen the girls spar. It wasn’t pretty. And that’s when they’re not really trying to hurt each other. What about now? When the girls are apparently fighting over a guy? Was the fight over now that Emma had Wesley? Emma rolled her eyes as she heard them whisper the rumours. Turning to June she saw the other girl roll her eyes too before turning back to Emma.
“… The same as last time?” June asked.
“Yeah.” Emma said.
Emma knew June wouldn’t say she was sorry. Especially in front of all these people. Not even if they were alone. And she wasn’t sure if they were good. They were keeping secrets. Not from their parents. (They always did that.) Not from their classmates. (Who cares about them?) But from each other.
“… Yeah. We’re ok.”
June held out her hand and Emma took hold of it. The girls then pulled each other into a hug and held it like that.
“We’re doomed,” someone whispered in the back ground.
“Again,” someone else added.
Date: 14 November 2035
Emma had learned how to pick a lock when she was just seven years old, long before her shadow powers activated. Her Uncle had shown her and her parents had hated him for it. For the next several months, that was all she and June did. Pick every lock they can find. They still did it, just not as much as they use to. Right now Emma, in her suit, was on her knees as she picked the lock to a toy store. She could use her powers, but was feeling a bit nostalgic
“I’m surprised some people still use these types of locks,” she said to Wesley
“While electronic locks are more common, some people think these easier to break.”
“Well, all you need is an Unlock Virus. And you can buy them anywhere.”
“They only work on non-logo locks. Not on N.I.C. locks.”
“Yes, but you have the password.”
“Yeah, how did you get that anyway?”
“… So why are you breaking into a toy store again? Aren’t you a bit young for these ones? Wouldn’t a baby store will be more appropriate?”
“Ha ha ha, I’m dying from laughter,” Emma said sarcastically.
“Just leave the body where no one can find it.”
“Cute. This is the store where that girl disappeared.”
“Yes. Jenna Frost, 6 years old, has been missing for a month now. And she’s not the first. There’s been about seven other girls reported missing, ages 6 to 8.”
“Do you think it’s by the same people?”
“Ok I’m in.”
“Behind the counter is a door marked ‘Personnel Only’. Enter it.
“What about the alarm?”
“Already took care of it. Now take the second door on your left, that’s the main office.”
“Ok. Got it. I’m inserting the Connector.”
“Good it will take a few minutes for me to see the computer.”
“Ok I’m an expert on hacking so tell me again how this Connector is supposed to help?”
“You’re not that good. A five year old is better than you.”
“Yeah, if that five year old was you..”
“In any case, my computer can search through the documents much faster and since the Connecter can connect any two computers, it’s more logical to use. Now what was the man’s name again?”
“Well I found a Philip Frank but he doesn’t look anything like that man you described.”
“What about cameras?”
“Give me a moment.”
Emma’s head snapped up as she heard the sound. According to her sensors it didn’t come from the front of the store, but from the back room, where she was.
“Wesley I thought you said you took out security?”
“Computer security. They might have a security guard.”
“I didn’t see any heat signatures before coming in.”
“…I know what you’re thinking. Do not investigate!”
“Sorry. Was already on my mind.”
“Emma! Don’t. You don’t know what-”
Switching off the com link, Emma removed the Connector, knowing Wesley had already downloaded everything he needed. Pocketing it she moved out of the room.
Either this person was extremely clumsy or they wanted to get caught. Emma switched her Visor to heat signatures, quickly finding the culprit. Oh this person defiantly wanted to be found. Emma watched as the figure took an object from a desk and dropped in on the floor.
Going back inside, Emma reached for a stapler and dropped it, all the while keeping an eye on the other intruder.
The figure moved. Emma wasted no time in going after them. The figure reached the back door and quickly exited the building. Emma switched her visor back to normal view as she neared the exit. She stopped, though, before she went through the door. There was no sign of forceful entry. Whoever the figure was, they had picked the lock.
Emma walked out of the building calmly. Once outside she looked for the figure. But she saw no one. Looking around, something caught her eye. Scratches on the brick wall, opposite the door.
It was an arrow pointing up.
Emma took out the grappling hook from her belt and shot it upwards. In all honesty she hated the thing. The whole feeling of jerked upward was unnerving. However, until Wesley found a way around the loss of communication after Shadow Travel, she was stuck with it.
“The Living Nightmare. A complete pleasure,” Emma spun towards the voice, not believing her eyes.
There, in front of her was a girl. Dressed in HER suit. It looked completely like hers, with only a few exceptions. One, the girl wore fingerless gloves, no metal finger gloves in sight. Two, instead of whips she had guns. And three, and most noticeable difference, her suit was red and gold, not black and silver. Even her hair was red.
“You can call me, Red Riding Hood.”