Monster in the Mirror

Chapter 25

As soon as I had finished dinner, I turned on the Xbox and snake heat lamps for Alex before climbing up on the roof of the house. Taking in the cold wind and endless stars, I straightened my spine and allowed my body suit to show itself once again. Looking at the snow-covered roof, I frowned as I saw that my suit was making the snow glow an ominous red, making it look like freshly-spilled blood. Shaking my head, I rid myself of unpleasant thoughts and focused my attention on finding Mysterion.

'If I was South Park's superhero, where would I be?' I wondered before I closed my eyes and opened them again to find the world around me turned yellow-orange in color. Smirking, I sent out a slight pulse through the air, which turned into a smile as the pulse returned back to me in the direction of where he was. 'Sometimes I love my Sonar.' I thought as I jumped from the roof and used the virus' biomass to begin gliding from building to building in the direction I needed to go. Using my bat-like Sonar again, I discovered that Mysterion was located on the roof of the Community Center: just where I had thought he was.

Returning my vision back to normal, I landed on the sidewalk before running up the side of the building and perched silently on an AC unit in a similar fashion as the vigilante had. In the growing darkness, I saw him kneeling on the edge of the building in the same badass Batman pose he had been in before: the wind harmlessly playing with his cape to complete the look. Perching in a similar fashion as him, I observed how he was watching the town like a hawk: ready for anything bad to happen. "Thought I'd find you up here." I said as his body flinched before he turned around to glare at me.

"Don't. Do. That." he warned as he stood up and jumped up on a different AC unit. "Sorry for scaring you, but I had to find you: one of my new friends is in big trouble." I said, catching his attention as his icy gaze bored holes in me. "What sort of trouble?" he questioned, never taking his gaze away from me: just in case I was lying to him. "Do you know somebody named Tweek?" I asked as he hesitated for a minute before nodding. "His father is drugging him." I said, watching as his face became even more serious than it already was before jumping down from his spot and stormed over to me.

"That is a pretty big accusation, do you have any proof of this?" he interrogated, narrowing his eyes as I nodded. "The homeless people in my friend Kenny's garage were cooking with Crystal Meth and Cocaine. I watched Mr. Tweak pour a bag of the stuff in with the coffee ingredients." I said as he growled at my information. "I will take care of this, thank you for the information." he said as he turned around to leave, only to have me walk up next to him. "What are you doing?" he asked as he jumped down on a fire escape while I crouched on the roof of the building, pulling my hood up as I did so.

"What does it look like, Mysterion? I'm coming with you." I said as I jumped off the building and landed on my feet on the sidewalk, skipping the fire escape altogether to the vigilante's shock. "No, you're not. It's too dangerous and I work alone." he dismissed as he got down off the fire escape after making sure I was fine after jumping off the tall building. "Have you forgotten the fact that you and I are practically the same? This is a walk in the park for me, besides: do you even know WHERE the drugs are stashed?" I said with a deadpanned look on my face, internally smirking as he gave an irritated sigh. "Fine, but if you get in the way or get in trouble: you're going home and never joining me again." he warned before walking in the direction of Kenny's house, leaving me to follow at my own risk.

"I can live with that." I said as I followed after him, letting him lead the way while I glanced around to make sure we weren't being followed. "Why does your costume do that?" he asked suddenly, startling me out of my concentration. "Do what?" I asked after a few seconds, watching my body suit glow dimly: lighting up the snow at our feet. "That. Why does it glow like that?" he asked again, cocking his head slightly to the side as I sighed, his question mark twitching with his motion. "This isn't a costume Mysterion: this is what the virus looks like when I'm not using it to turn my arms into weapons or shapeshift. I wear my other clothes over this to cover it up, people already hate me enough as it is: I don't want to be seen as a monster because of how the virus makes me look." I explained as he took in the body suit's design and glowing tendencies.

"If you don't like it, why don't you take it off?" he questioned as we crossed into the run-down part of town. "I can't take the suit off: it's kinda like a second skin: I can shower and still be clean, but they will never come off. I guess you could say this body suit is my permanent reminder of what they've done to me." I said sadly, ducking inside Kenny's garage before Mysterion could even say anything. Standing by the door, I held my gloved hand over my nose to help protect it against the poisonous smells coming from inside the laboratory as Mysterion glanced warily at me before opening the door and walking inside. Watching him recoil at the smell, he lifted his cape around his face as he took in the equipment and ingredients scattered around the filthy room.

"Shit. I had been hoping you were lying…what a mess." he said almost sadly as he looked around the room before landing his gaze on the three unconscious Meth Heads I had defeated earlier today. "You okay Mysterion?" I asked, not used to seeing him vulnerable the way he was at the moment. "It's nothing. Looks like the drugs finally got to them." he said, changing the subject as I helped him tie the Meth Heads up with some rope we found in a corner. I didn't dare tell him that I had been the one to put them in this state, mainly because I didn't want him to think I had a hand in Tweek getting drugged. After taking pictures to use as evidence, we began looking around for the drugs in question…only to find nothing.

"Looks like they moved their stash." Mysterion said as we both came up empty-handed after almost an hour of searching. "Looks like it, where could they have moved it to though?" I asked as I glanced at the filthy adults, trying to think of where they could've put the drugs. "That is the police's job now, we have enough evidence to have them locked up for a long time, let's go." he said as we walked out of the room and ducked under the rusted door of the garage, only to have me halt suddenly where I stood, drawing the vigilante's attention. "What?" he questioned as I tilted my head up and sniffed a passing breeze: probably making me look like a cat or something to him, but I really didn't care at the moment. "This way." I said before running in the opposite direction of where we were going, making sure Mysterion was following me as I led him down several side-streets before coming to a stop next to Stark's Pond.

Giving Mysterion a few minutes to catch his breath, I pointed to a box sitting in the middle of the frozen pond. "I think I found the missing drugs." I said as Mysterion followed my finger and scowled darkly at the cardboard box sitting on the ice. "I won't ask how you did, but we should get them and bring them to the police." he said, making me freeze in fear as I paled. "W-What did you say?" I stuttered, making him glance at me. "Go get the box so we can take it to the police." he repeated, making me stumble back away from the frozen pond.

"Mysterion no! I-I can't." I said fearfully as he turned to me with narrowed eyes. "Yes you can, the pond has been frozen since the beginning of Winter." he said, looking at me in confusion as I grabbed hold of a streetlight and held on for dear life. "N-No! You don't understand! I CAN'T swim: if I fall through that ice I'll sink like a rock, it's part of what the virus did to me!" I protested as he frowned at my answer before nodding once. "Fine, then wait there and I'll get it." he said as he carefully walked across the pond and picked up the box before walking back with it. "Y-You won't tell anybody about that…will you?" I asked as he led the way to the police station.

"If you won't say anything about me not being able to die, not that you'll remember if I do or not anyway." he said, muttering the last part to himself before becoming silent, making a small grin appear on my face. 'Thank you, Mysterion.' I thought happily as we came to a stop at our destination: beyond happy that justice will finally be served for poor Tweek. Climbing up the fire escape outside the building, I watched as Mysterion climbed through an open window, where an authoritive man with bright-orange hair and several cops were drinking coffee.

"Ah Mysterion! Thank God you came, what news do you bring?" the orange-haired man asked as the vigilante crouched on the floor of the offices. "There is a conspiracy going on Commissioner, I have evidence of a drug laboratory selling Crystal Meth and Cocaine to nearby coffee shops. The ones behind this stash have been tied and are waiting for you in the McCormick's garage, along with all of their supplies." Mysterion explained, causing a round of applause to erupt from the officers. "Well done Mysterion, we'll get to work on arresting the people behind it right away." the Commissioner replied as he took the box from the vigilante.

"I didn't even know about this, let alone would have been able to find this stash if I didn't have help." Mysterion said, making me flinch in surprise that he would include me: I mean sure it was true, but I thought he worked alone and wanted to keep that image. "Hmm…do you know who it was that helped you, or was it an anonymous tip?" an officer questioned as I watched Mysterion lean out the window and watch me from his shadowed hood. "Are you coming up or staying there?" he asked, making me realize he wanted me to join him up there. Nodding at him, I climbed onto the windowsill and perched like I've seen him do, making sure my hood was up and covered my eyes as I did.

From the shadows of my hood, I watched as all the officers' faces became surprised and slightly fearful as they took in my glowing body suit. "Whoa! W-Who is that?!" one of the officers questioned while dropping his coffee cup on the floor, spilling the beverage messily. "Look at how that costume glows!" exclaimed another as the orange-haired Commissioner waved his hand to shut them up. "Mysterion…I didn't know you had a partner." he said as I fought back a blush at the way he said it: as if he were implying Mysterion and I were something else entirely.

"She isn't my partner." he answered, making me frown sadly as I realized he didn't trust me enough to consider me an ally. "But she may as well be." he continued, making my head jerk up so fast I was sure I had given myself whiplash. As his words sunk in, I was internally dancing like a fool: he accepted me! Mysterion accepted me! I'm his partner, ME! He knew who and what I was, and he accepted it instead of turning his back on me or treating me like a monster.

"I see. Thank you for helping Mysterion uncover this drug cartel. The South Park Police Force will never forget this, before you go: what's your name?" the Commissioner asked as I moved aside and let Mysterion out the window. "You can call me….Blacklight." I said in a lower tone of voice before letting go of the window, ready to join Mysterion in protecting the town, in more ways than one.

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