The Kidnapping of Mrs Purn
The plan was diabolical. Fiendish. Evil. The Black Belt was even reluctant to follow the plan. But the Vampire explained that they wouldn't actually harm the victim, they were just going to use her as bait. It was Superkid who was going to limp away from the trap… if he lived.
Phase I: locate the target. They knew that Superkid lived in Poolington, which naturally followed that that's where their victim would be found. From there, they needed to narrow down the address. Unfortunately, since the two of them were notorious villainesses, they couldn't just knock on doors and ask for Superkid's whereabouts. They might as well use bullhorns to announce themselves and stick targets on their backs. No, they needed to be more subtle about it. Internet searches didn't turn up much except for some discussions about how cool the youthful vigilante was. So finally they decided to resort to the old-fashioned method: disguise themselves, walk around town and see if they couldn't spot the little twerp.
They were at this for two weeks, which is astonishing when you consider that Poolington was a town six blocks wide and twelve blocks long. It couldn't fit more than one skating park, one baseball field, three arcades, and one Kid Central—better known as school. And neither the Vampire nor the Black Belt found Superkid in any of these locations. The ex-reporter was getting impatient and frustrated and the karate master was having second thoughts again about being a part of this operation.
Until, at last, they found him. The Vampire was in the personal care aisle, disguised as an old granny, when a short but robust woman and an even shorter (but skinny) boy entered the store. She immediately recognized Superkid thanks to her photographic memory. And thanks to her deductive skills, she decided the woman next to him was his mother.
"So your teacher wants you to get crayons?" the mother asked. She sounded irritated as though that teacher was asking a lot from her.
"That's what she said," Superkid answered in an unmistakable tone of apprehension.
So much for the 'fearless kid,' the Vampire thought smugly. She never realized that Superkid was a separate persona for this kid and this kid was in fact Aaron. If she ever bothered to stop and think about it, she would most likely figure out that mothers don't normally name their kids Superkid. But there was only one thing she was considering right now: revenge. Rather interesting how that can make you so narrow-minded.
His mother huffed and grumbled as she pulled out a shopping cart, "Why can't she just provide you with the crayons?"
Superkid mumbled, "I don't know."
The two of them started toward the Vampire's aisle. Heart pounding with excitement, the Vampire, still disguised as an old granny, tottered out and accidentally bumped into Superkid's mother. She teetered until she grabbed the stern woman's wrist for support.
"Oops," she said in her best high-pitched, croaky voice, "I'm so sorry. So clumsy of me."
Superkid's mother didn't respond. Her eyes had fallen out of focus and her whole form drooped as though she had gotten soaked. She felt as though her energy was being sapped into the old woman's hand on her wrist.
The old lady-who was really the Vampire-said, "I'm just not as well-coordinated as I used to be. Ah, comes with old age." She finally removed her hand and patted Superkid's mother on the arm. She glanced at Superkid nervously to see if he recognized her, but he seemed a little afraid of old women for he had backed away a few steps and was now studying scouring pads hanging off the end of Aisle 3 with intense focus. Or maybe something about the way the metal filaments had been weaved into a ball had captured his attention.
The Vampire was too excited to ponder the matter. She now knew that Superkid and his mother lived at 140 East, Poolington, in a blue house. She also learned that Superkid was at school from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm, that his mother got home from work at around 12:30 pm, and that she had hidden his video games in her underwear drawer—the last place he ever wanted to look! Why that was significant I'm not sure, but the Vampire was sure excited about this information. Or maybe it was just the first three bits. Whatever the case, the lecherous woman was tottering as fast as she could to find Karate Woman to tell her the good news and to finalize their plans.
Phase II: bait the hook…
The day dawned peacefully and quietly. Aaron went off to school with his $0.60 box of crayons and Mrs. Purn decided to do a bit of housework before going off to work. It was such a beautiful day as she was washing the breakfast dishes. A beautiful day where nothing could go wrong.
At least that was the plan. But this was a world where Murphy and his law reigned supreme. Then again, Mrs. Purn didn't believe in Murphy or his beloved law, so when she saw two strange women—a woman entirely in white and another woman entirely in black—walking up the sidewalk, she merely gave them a curious glance and then went back to her dishes. She might have gotten suspicious when the two women turned into her driveway if she hadn't gone into the laundry room. She did hear the door open though.
"Aaron? Is that you?" She straightened herself from the dryer where she had been pulling out clothes.
There wasn't any answer but there were slow quiet footsteps in the kitchen.
"Don't sneak away, Aaron, I can hear you," Mrs. Purn growled. "Did you miss the bus?" She did not want to drive him to school.
There was still no answer and there were still slow, quiet footsteps. Funnily enough, they sounded like they were getting closer. Aaron probably knew he was busted and was coming for the inevitable lecture.
If he doesn't want it, then why do I still have to give it to him? She wondered rhetorically to herself. She was still going to give it to him so she pushed open the door and opened her mouth to begin…
And found herself staring into the face of a pale woman with unusually long fangs, whom she recognized as the escaped convict on TV. She screamed and slammed the door in the Vampire's face. She barred the door with a clothes hamper full of clothes and her own formidable body weight.
The Vampire tried to push the door in but it barely budged. So she slammed herself into the door but that only earned her a bruised shoulder. So she kicked the door but that only gave her a stubbed toe.
Then the Black Belt pushed her gently aside and then lunge-kicked the door.
Mrs. Purn fell backwards from the force. The Black Belt kicked the door again and together she and the Vampire marched in and grabbed Mrs. Purn.
"What are you doing?" Mrs. Purn shrieked.
The Vampire informed her as they dragged her out of the room, "We're kidnapping you. We've got a score to settle with that annoying brat of yours, Superkid."
"Superkid?" Mrs. Purn said. Her voice began to rise. "This is about Superkid? You come into my house and knock me around and kidnap me BECAUSE YOU HAVE A SCORE TO SETTLE WITH SUPERKID?" As she continued yelling, she suddenly began squirming like a cobra until she managed to squirm out of the Vampire's grip. Then she swung her fist into the lecherous ex-reporter's face with a nasty crack. While the evil woman cried out in pain, holding her nose, Mrs. Purn swung her fist at the Black Belt. The karate master caught her fist and deftly twisted her around so that her fists were now being held behind her back.
"YOU… LOW-LIFE DEGENERATES! YOU'LL NEVER GET AWAY WITH THIS! I'LL CALL THE COPS AND HAVE THEM ARREST YOU…"
The Black Belt calmly held the irate woman in place. The Vampire, on the other hand, was hissing furiously. She pinched her nose where blood was dripping. Then she walked up to Mrs. Purn and slapped her. It was a pretty good slap too. It echoed in the house and it stunned Mrs. Purn into silence.
The Vampire shoved a sharp-nailed finger at the stunned woman and hissed, "Now you shut up. If you open your mouth again I will rip your throat out. Understand?"
"HOW DARE YOU!" screeched Mrs. Purn, who had never met anyone so insolent in all her life. "YOU BREAK INTO MY HOUSE, KIDNAP ME, AND THEN YOU TELL ME TO SHUT UP?"
The Vampire slapped her again. "I said, 'Shut up!'"
"YOU WILL FACE THE LAW FOR THIS! I'LL TELL THEM ALL ABOUT…"
That was the last of the evil woman's patience. She grabbed Mrs. Purn's throat and squeezed. Mrs. Purn gasped and then choked as she tried to suck in air.
The Black Belt's eyes widened in panic. "This wasn't part of the plan!"
"She needs to learn…" the Vampire grunted with a manic gleam in her eye, "that when I say, 'shut up,' I mean 'shut up'!"
Mrs. Purn's eyes rolled to the back of her head and her head drooped. Suddenly she slumped forward, almost falling on top of the Vampire and bringing the Black Belt with her. The Black Belt let her drop to the floor. She stared wide-eyed at Mrs. Purn's prostrate form.
"She's only unconscious," said the Vampire irritably. "Believe me, I demonstrated considerable constraint. I didn't choke her. I merely drained her energy enough to knock her out. Now help me carry her out."
Hesitantly the Black Belt reached down for Mrs. Purn. She took her legs while the Vampire took the unconscious woman under the arms. The karate woman asked, "Drained her energy?"
The black-clad woman grunted as they shuffled to the front door, "I have this… ability to… drain energy from… whoever I touch." When they reached the front door, the Black Belt suddenly said, "Wait! What will the neighbors think if they saw us dragging her away?" She nodded at their victim.
The Vampire frowned down at the victim. "Good point," she said. "What do you suggest?"
"We will have to disguise her. Cover her with a sheet."
So they heaved the unconscious Mrs. Purn to the couch and then searched the house for a sheet until they found it. They draped it over their victim and then began to carry her off again. Then the Vampire stopped them when she said, "Hold on. I forgot something." She dropped her end of the unconscious victim and hurried to the kitchen. She stood in front of the refrigerator and pulled out from her pocket a crumpled note. She used a magnet to place it onto the fridge. She reviewed the note with a wicked smile and then hurried to help her cohort carry out Superkid's mom.
They hadn't gotten very far outside when they were stopped by another woman.
"Hello," she greeted them. She glanced at the sheet-covered form they were carrying and asked, "What are you doing?"
"Taking some stuff for, uh…" the Vampire quickly searched her mind for the name of Superkid's mom, "Mrs. Purn. She told us we could have some stuff."
"Oh, is she having a garage sale?" said the woman, looking delighted.
"No," said the Vampire quickly. The last thing she needed was some nosy neighbor checking into the house and discovering Mrs. Purn missing.
The woman's face fell. "Oh." Then she put on a curious face and started for the covered bundle. "What is it?"
"A couch," answered the Vampire, swinging the bundle away from her groping hand.
"Seems kind of small," replied the woman. "Why is it covered?" She moved again to lift the sheet.
"The cloth is sensitive to sunlight," invented the villainess as she kicked the nosy woman. The woman cried out and stumbled a little.
"Sorry," said the malicious ex-reporter. Her expression was configured a little strangely for an apology however. The corners of her mouth were turned up and her eyes were narrowed.
The woman rose unsteadily. She glared at the toothy expression of the pale woman in black.
"I should leave now," she said grumpily and limped off.
The Vampire muttered, "Nosy old geezer." Then she and the Black Belt carried their bundle down the street until they reached their car that they had hidden in a copse at the end of the block. After stowing the unconscious mother of Superkid into the rear of the car, the Black Belt drove them all the way to the drop-point to wait.
Three hours later, Aaron came home from school. He tossed his bag onto the table and headed for the fridge.
"Mom!" he called. "I'm home!" He reached into the fridge and pulled out items. With these items he made himself a sandwich. When he finished, he sat down to eat his sandwich.
The note on the fridge? Yes, of course I remember it's on there. Don't worry, Superkid will find it soon. Just give a kid time to unwind a bit first! And besides, how can a superhero fight evil on an empty stomach?
As Aaron gradually ingested his snack in preparation for the super-battle that was soon to take place-which he had no idea about-his eyes traveled to the fridge. Yes, the same fridge that the Vampire left her note on.
He got up, fuel source still in hand, and slowly approached it. He reached for the note and grasped it between his fingers. He yanked it from the grip of the magnet… and it ripped in half. So he lifted the magnet and pulled out the top half. Then he brought the two pieces of the note together like a jigsaw puzzle and he began to read:
He didn't even have time to say, "Huh?" when he convulsed as though he had been shot. Then he blinked confusedly and shook himself. Then he noticed the two pieces of the note in his hand as though for the first time. He brought them up and read:
We have your mom. If you ever want to see her again, come meet us at Lonely Road.
Your most feared enemy,
The Vampire (and the Black Belt)
"My most feared enemy, the Vampire?" Superkid repeated, his face screwed up in puzzlement. "Who's the Vampire?"
Just then, the front door opened and Darrin and Derrick walked through.
Derrick threw out his arm and exclaimed, "Hey, buddy! I've got a favor…"
"My mom's been kidnapped!" Superkid yelled as the message suddenly hit him. "Someone called 'the Vampire' and…" he checked the note, "the Black Belt kidnapped her!"
Darrin and Derrick both blinked in surprise. Darrin said, "Are you serious?"
"As serious as these two seem to be," Superkid replied, showing him the note.
"Does this mean we actually get to do some superhero stuff again?" Derrick cried excitedly.
Neither of his friends paid any attention to him. Darrin frowned thoughtfully. "The Vampire… hang on a moment, isn't she the one who broke her leg after dropping from your balloon?"
"The Vampire's a girl?" Derrick snickered. "I was thinking of this guy with long fangs and a big, black cape with this big ol' collar, you know?" He flared his fingers at his neck to indicate a large collar.
He was still ignored. Superkid exclaimed, "That's right! The Vampire! I broke her leg, like, three months ago! This must be her revenge on me."
"About time!" cried Derrick. "We haven't had any bad guys to beat in forever!"
Darrin glared at Derrick. "Come on, Derrick, this is serious. We're talking about Aar—er, Superkid's mom here."
Derrick shrugged. "What's the big deal? All he has to do is give that Vampire a few good punches and kicks and his mom is free. That karate teacher taught him some pretty sweet moves…"
"My teacher's on here too," Superkid interrupted. "My ex-teacher. She helped with the kidnapping."
"Now we're talking!" Derrick said delightedly as he rubbed his hands together. "This ought to be an awesome challenge!"
Superkid shot a glare at Derrick and said, "How's this for a challenge? My mom won't allow me to hit girls."
Darrin and Derrick's mouths dropped. Then together they burst out laughing.
"You can't beat up girls?" Derrick nearly choked.
Superkid folded his arms and narrowed his eyes. "No I can't. Otherwise, I'd be beating you up right now."
Darrin guffawed, "Superkid's one weakness… touching girls."
"That's right," Superkid responded. "So we're going to have to come up with a plan to rescue my mom—without beating up the girls."
Darrin and Derrick could only laugh.