Country: United States
May 17, 2019
06/18/2021 11:49 PM
Superboy #4 2/2
[ X Island. . . ]
"Why did. . . why did I--" In his state of shock, Superboy fumbles to find the right words to express his desperate thoughts. Who's fault was it truly? His own, or his antagonizer -- his former antagonizer. That roller coaster of a torment was finally over, and for good to boot. The aftermath, however, was not worth it in his eyes. There was no. . . Undoing what he had just done on this island. He violated the hero code, much like how the experience violated his soul. A feeling of dread. A feeling that transcends any physical pain he's been inflicted with over the eight months since he's been out of the storage space under the Lex Corp. building back in Metropolis.
"No. This wasn't my fault.." He protests with a voice that threatens crack, shaking his head in denial. His racing mind plays the memory reel of the past few months. He recalls the pain, the restless nights, the abuse, and how it all became an intrusive cycle in his life.
"YOU made me do this! You just kept pushing and pushing...!" The youth practically hisses as he points accusingly, his emotions flowing out like a crumbling dam struggling to hold back a mass body of water.
"You told me you were all I needed! I thought you were all I wanted..
You were. You were all I wanted without question... but you just wouldn't stop. Never satisfied, never content. Ever challenging my worth... always bending my values to where I never wanted to go." Superboy continues his rant, though his anger begins to sizzle out under the crashing wave of his regret and sadness. With a pitiful look, breathing through slightly parted lips, he looks upon the most influential person he's met yet. Laying motionless at the beach's shores... her upper body left dwelling in shallow depths, the gentle waves serving as an obscuring blanket over the lifeless corpse. In his pause, nothing fills his surroundings but the sound of the ocean swaying and birds squawking in the distance. He comes to realize just how alone he is.
"I'm sorry." A phrase that leaves his lips, soft spoken. He hangs his head in defeat, and the possible repercussions of his misdeed begin to don on him.
"I'm sorry... I'm so sorry. I... I didn't know what I was doing until... Untill.." Tears begin to flow from his eyes. Tears his hands reach to wipe away as his chokes back the need to sob. Superman wouldn't have done this. Supergirl will never forgive him for this. The world will reject and shun him.. - Are the thoughts that particularly plague his mind, growing louder and intense as the seconds. His sniffling inevitably shifting to sobbing he tries to contain. He turns his head toward the setting sun, pacing in the sand a few steps before his knees give out underneath him, collapsing onto the sand under his feet. Crippling shame and regret eats at him from the inside out, and he can't help but to nearly keel over from. His quivering arms just barely manage to keep him from dropping face down from his hunched over position.
So swept up in his misery, the sound of approaching helicopters falls silent within his super-inhuman senses. Just until they're descended down from overhead, that is. Still, he has no intent of moving an inch, nor make any attempt at justifying what he did on that very island. Fortunately for him, the new arrival is. . . Understanding of such predicaments. For the first time, Superboy gets to meet his maker.
"My, my. . . What have we here?" Lex Luthor muses outloud as he approaches Superboy and only after the spinning blades of his copters cease into silence. He takes in the sight of the ruin in the distance, where a base of sorts once stood, and even the corpse of a familiar muscle for hire laying nearby. Nonetheless, an amused grin forms across his lips. With armed guards standing at his flanks, Lex stops fairly within arms reach of the young 'hero'.
"Seems like you're the lonesome survivor of a string of unfortunate events that took place here." Lex comments, tucking his hands away into the pockets of his slacks as his emerald optics rest upon the clone. Though with hesitation, Superboy sits up enough to where he can at least look Lex's way from over a shoulder.
"It was all my fault. I didn't fulfill my purpose... I've become comprised." The youth responds.
"Oh, I wouldn't quite say that. At least, not when there's evidence to the contrary— Superboy." Lex counters. However, the clone remains heavily skeptical and their eye-contact breaks when he turns his head forward again.
"I've been observing you for longer than you might have realized, you know. I never truly lose tabs on what's mine, after all.
Surely you didn't think I'd turn a complete blind eye to you, did you? I've seen all of your endeavors within Metropolis - exceptional handiwork and adaptability, by the by - and have been following your adventures since the day you returned to the city. Heh. Quite an interesting first meeting between you and Supergirl, wasn't it? Fascinating to see that kryptonite did nearly so little to slow you down." Lex explains, sauntering forward until he came to stand beside the clone. His sights fixing upon the smoke in the distance. Admittedly, it all piques Superboy's curiosity. New hope forming, twinkling in his darkest hour yet.
"You even used my surname when enrolling with your school. . . A sentiment that surprised me, and touched me. Connor Luthor. . . A fine name, indeed." It was true. Meredith thought attending school would help Superboy with his soothe out his rough edges and better his social skills. The first name 'Connor' derived from Meredith's deceased grandfather. 'Luthor' was undoubtedly taken from Lex - a last name that Superboy felt held inspiring strength. That was months ago, and things have been spiraling downward since then.
"And, well... not to speak ill of the dead, but Knockout wasn't exactly an outstanding citizen. She was a loose canon who did good on her job some days, but damned the consequences of her ruthless nature. Trust me when I say, her passing is nothing anyone on earth is going to shed tears over."
"...But Superman wouldn't have done that." Connor finally speaks up again, looking up toward the other.
"No, he wouldn't. But I created you to replace Superman. To be better than him. Where he may disapprove of you, I wholeheartedly approve." Lex informs, returning the stare.
"If you want, I can make this all go away, Superboy. Everything that happened on this island will NEVER reach civilization. You could resume your heroic endeavors, endorsed by none other than me... By your father." An offer made by Lex -- an offer that drew a wide-eyed expression from the clone.
[Nightfall back at Nevada, Las Vegas]
A knocking at Meredith's front door immediately catches the scientists attention.
"One moment!" She calls out from her workspace. She rises and heads toward the front door, proceeding to ask–
"Who is it?" She awaits with an ear near the door, a hand on the door handle.
"It's... it's me. Superboy." And with that answer given, the locks are undone and the door swings open with haste.
"Superboy!? Are you okay? You've been gone for quite some time."
"I... I don't know. I just... wanted to go home and think. Maybe even forget what the last few months have been like. I didn't know where else to go."
"I see. Absolutely understandable. I figured I'd let you go out and experience life without worry. Even so, nothing has changed for you between us. You still have a home here with me. " She assures before stepping aside to give him room to enter the house.
"Thank you. I think I had enough life experience for now."
06/15/2021 12:39 PM
"Alright, whaddya' think, kid? Look good?" The artist, a barber & the owner of the establishment, inquires as he hands a small mirror to one of his most unusual patrons. In truth, even the commission itself was unusual, as well dated. The youngster carefully takes the mirror from the man's hand, and studies himself from the brow up. Cyan eyes perk up as if intrigued. His moves the mirror to various angles, while also adjusting his neck to better see the refined handiwork he was bestowed with. The boy's lips soon curve into a satisfactory grin he couldn't hope to control, then gives his verdict.
"R i g h t e o u s . ✨" A phrase he adopted from outdated pop culture media, but one that was of the highest, even if so simple, praise in his newly acquired opinion. Something from his customer's delighted tone, Superboy , the barber gathered was a sign of another job well done.
"Ah, you dig it? Always glad to please, brother." The shop owner comments, taking back the mirror and setting it aside. Within a moment of thoroughness, he cleans off his patron with a thick hand-sized brush. Only then, does he remove the protective covering from around the young hero's neck. Superboy reaches for the mechanical wallet he's been carrying around with him, courtesy of the generous Dr. Meredith, as he raises to stand on his feet. He places and holds his thumb where he was instructed to by Meredith in order to gain access, and after his print is scanned, the wallet emits a few low beeps before it opens and allows him to collect the cash inside.
"How much will this service cause me, Mr. Mackems?" The kryptonian asks, ready to draw in correspondence to the fee.
"Usually charge $30, but for you? I'll drop it down to $25, lil' super-dude." The owner informers, now just finishing up tidying his work space. In with that in mind, Superboy plucks out what he owes, as well as a tip to express his high satisfaction, and hands it over.
"Then I'll give you $35 with my tip included. To show my support for your pleasing work." A response that earns a look of surprise, then a hearty chuckle as a follow up.
"Mad respect, Superboy. Definitely something I can see Superman sayin', too. You drop by anytime, man. I'll hook you up again." Johnson, the shop owner, assures as he pockets the money. Giving a nod of acknowledgement, Superboy begins heading toward the exit. However, Johnson calls out to him one last time.
"And you don't gotta' call me mister, little bro. I ain't old yet. Just call me John-John. S'what people call me around here."
"Oh, alright. John-John it is, then. I'll be back again." The boy speaks, then resumes exiting the shop. From there, the young hero takes to the sky and heads to his next stop.
Within an indoor shopping mall, Superboy floats forward and inches above the marble floor, scanning around for the specific store he searched up details for, a day prior. All the while, his presence earns stares from the hundreds of other patrons around. Some, so fascinated by the peculiar lad, begin to follow behind him. Curious to know what someone like him would even shop for. The answer would become fairly clear before too much longer. The youth slows to a levitating halt as he finally finds what he's been searching for: the local Hot Topic shop. A mini 'paradise' holding less-than-usual fashion, accessories, goods, and even customers.
He lowers to touchdown before entering, sounding the bell above. There's a delay before the door shuts after his arrival. Some of his tailing admirers decide to enter behind him, standing at a distance to observe and/or record him via cellphone.
"Hey, welcome to Hot Topic. Nice suit, kid. You heading to a comic con soon, or something?" One of the clerks greet & ask, studying the high-quality design of the potential customer's fanciful black & red costume.
"Comic. . . Con? No, I'm looking to buy a leather jacket. A black one." Superboy answers, unaware what the young woman was referring to, evident by the look on his face.
"Oh, sure. Take a look over there. You.. might find something your size. How old are you, 14? They might be a bit big on you, to be honest, kid." She informs and points.
"I'll see what I can find, then. No harm in trying." And with that, he heads to where she advised. For the next ten minutes or so, the clone sorts through the available options. Meanwhile, his 'admirers' murmuring fill the background noise. They didn't quite draw Superboy's attention, but the clerks definitely take notice.
"Hey-hey, come on. No loitering or whatever the heck you guys are doin' inside the store. Gotta' shop or hit the door, peeps."
"Aw, come on, Martha! We just wanna' see Superboy. My Instagram is going to blow up once I post him on my wall!" A brunette amongst the bunch counters, obviously familiar with one of the employees.
"Superboy? You mean the kid over there? I don't recall Superman having any other relative besides Supergirl. You sure it's not just some kid cosplaying in a custom suit?" Martha reasons, briefly looking over toward the clone who was trying on jackets.
"Yeah, totally! He was flying around before he came in here. Didn't you see him!?"
"No. I guess... I was moving stuff around before I saw him come in. I had no idea. Feels like you're just messin' with me, Emily. That, or you guys were seeing things."
"Really? ALL OF US just imagined we saw him flying through the mall? Get real, Martha. I think the greens are finally rotting your brain. Why don't you just ask him and see for yourself?" Emily retorts, though Martha's skeptical expression lingers. Coincidentally enough, just as she turns her head, the person of interest was just approaching her with a jacket in hand, smiling as he does.
"Hey, I think I found something suitable enough. I'd like to buy this one." The clone informs.
"O-oh. Sure, sure. Let me ring that up for you." And so she does. However, upon an additional item catching his eye, the kryptonian reaches to pluck red-tinted shades off the display sitting atop of the counter, which he then hands over to the clerk.
"I'd like to add this, too."
"Got cha.' And..... that'll be $29.38." Similar to before, the clone takes out and hands over the appropriate amount to make the purchase. Afterwards, he removes the tags and dons his new possessions. Now, his new look was complete.
"Hey, by the way– Are you. . . You know, a superhero? Like, a real Superboy?" Martha musters the nerve to ask. To which she receives a grin and nod from the kryptonian.
"That would be correct. I am definitely thee Superboy. Thanks for the help, and hope you enjoy the rest of your day." He answers. Then, he takes to levitating again, and adeptly flies over the people between him and the exit. From there, he departs from the mall to begin his patrol of Las Vegas, ready to serve justice and show off his fashionable new look.
[ This blog post is private ]
[ This blog post is private ]
05/19/2021 07:18 PM
Superboy #3 Part 2
Despite Kara Zor-El being the faster of the two youths, both kryptonians made pretty good time while handling things on their end. Before four minutes had passed, they took care of their respective androids and met midway to search for the last of the bunch.
“Hey, I didn’t get to ask, but where did you come from? Kal-EL never mentioned having a son before…” Kara takes the opportunity to prod a bit. The question only served to earn a questioning look from the male beside her.
“Kal-El? Who is this… Kal-El you speak of?”
“Huh? Are you another lost child from Krypton, then?”
“Krypton? Is that some sort of city that hasn’t been charted yet? You’re confusing me…”
“I— I’m just as confused. Where did you come from?”
“We can talk about that later. What does the radar say? Are we getting close?”
“Oh, lemme’ check.” And check she does.
“Says it’s nearby. Pretty close, actually.” She informs while slowing down until reaching a full stop. Superboy mimicking her almost instantly.
“Alright, now we just need to—“ Superboy attempts to explain, but Kara interrupts with a curious update.
“Wait, wait. It… looks like the dot is expanding. It just keeps growing. Is what we’re looking for the size of a killer whale or something?”
“No. At least… I don’t think so.” The two begin surveying the area around them. A park that was more green than the typical, barely little over a dozen people waltzing about. Everyone the pair examined within half a minute were all humans. No oddities about.
“Do you think it’s broken?” Supergirl finally breaks the silence to ask.
“I don’t think so. Meredith, are you picking up anything different?” Superboy inquires without breaking focus.
“No, I picked up the same change Supergirl saw. Maybe it is some kind of erro—“ Just then, large metallic hands took hold of an ankle of both kryptonians and roughly slammed them down to ground level. Superboy smashed through a wooden bench, while Kara landed chin first upon the brick path. Somehow, the two had failed to notice the sizable machine creeping up behind them. Somehow.
“Well, look what we have here. . .” The begins, pausing briefly to unknowingly lift Superman’s self-proclaimed replacement and fling him toward a lamppost a few feet away, thinking the boy to be nothing worth worrying over.
“Figured someone was busy being nosy. And why, it’s none other than Superman’s cousin. You may not be that big blue airhead, but you’ll do just as well to let some steam off on.”
“Metallo. . .” Supergirl murmurs with disdain, pushing her face off the cement. Turning her head, she comes face to face with an arm-cannon.
“You’re darn right it is!”
ZZZZZZZ-ZROOOOM. A blast of radiant kryptonite energy hits the side of the heroine’s face.
“Don’t get up too soon, now. Stay a while. I gots plenty to get outta’ my chest, girlie.” Just then, the villain’s large robotized boot comes stomping Kara’s face back down, forming a head imprint upon doing so.
“Hey, get off of her!” Superboy shouts, charging in with a shoulder that shoves Metallo into skidding on his feet along the pavement and grass. Taken by surprise, he takes a moment to study the meddling boy. His annoyed expression shifts a wicked smirk.
“You’re a spitting image of that self-righteous bastard.”
“You think so, huh? Let’s hope you can read between the lines, then. Give it up.” Superboy retorts as he takes up a fighting stance - one that the vigilante Wildcat had only recently taught him in uptaking, but also one the boy merely adopted a sloppy form of. The dwelling pain from his injuries didn’t help too much, either.
“Superboy, I’m getting a strange power reading from this guy. It’s indicating that it's coming from inside his upper torso.” Meredith informs as her sphere moves to float beside the clone.
“Careful, Superboy. Ugh.. That power source is kryptonite, and that definitely sucks for us both.” Supergirl adds, picking herself up from the ground.
“We just have to get it out and quickly get it out. Easy enough.” The boy speaks in naivety.
“Heh. If all ya want is a shot at it, kid. Have at it.” Metallo goads, his torso splitting open to reveal the chunk of kryptonite inside. The light was so bright, that even Supergirl could feel it eating at her strength from where she stood. However, it seemed to have no present effect on the boy. With narrowing eyes, he pushes off the ground and rushes Metallo down…. Only for his flight to suddenly give out on him midway. He tumbles within a roll, which ends with his forehead bouncing off the firm metal frame of Metallo’s body.
“Achk!? What just happened!?”
“What did I JUST tell you? Kryptonite equals bad, Superboy!” Kara shouts out to him.
“Ba-HAHAHA! Is this kid really Superman’s son? Guess your old man forgot to give ya a few lessons about the world.” Metallo mocks, finding immense amusement in the situation.
“What’s so bad about it, besides being an eyesore?” The lad asks, rising up while soothing where he hit his head. The display earns abrupt questioning looks from the other two.
“What the hell?” Metallo quirks a brow.
“Is… is he immune to it?” Kara stares with curiosity.
“Well… I suppose I feel a bit lethargic. Just a bit… but I’d say I feel fine for the most part.” The boy casually shrugs.
“Tch… Are you some kind of phony, kid?” The towering cyborg asks, unmindful of his letting his guard down so easily. Without warning, the black-clad hero reaches to grab at the Kryptonite. Pulling at it as he tries to snap off the wires holding it in place.
“Hey, knock it off!” Metallo yells, swinging a forearm that connects and sends the boy flying backwards until he lands beside Supergirl… holding the cyborg’s radiant green energy source between his hands.
“That… that hurt more than usual. But– I got it.”
“You damn brat, gimme that back! I need that!”
“For the love of everything that is holy, chuck that thing into space!” Kara instructs just before charging toward Metallo to both keep the menace occupied and put some distance between her and the glowing rock.
“Right, right…” With haste, the raven-haired clone hustles up onto his feet. He jogs in the direction, prepping to chuck the kryptonite like a football.
“NNNOOOOOOO— ah… OOF!” Metallo, yelling at the top of his (none existent) lungs, witnesses the boy fling his power source skyward, only for it to hit the ground barely seven feet from where it started. Now, there was the issue of dealing with the blonde slamming him into a nearby tree.
“What the— What was that…?” The teen murmurs, looking down at his hands.
“It would seem though you’re not keeling over from the kryptonite, it still affects your powers. That kryptonite is nullifying your kryptonian half.” Meredith theorizes, floating over to scan the clone from head to toe, then the kryptonite afterwards.
“I’ll run some tests, but you should try to find some way to get rid of that rock, Superboy.”
“This is beyond tedious…” Words spoken as the young male moves to pick up the kryptonite again.
“Hey, Kid—“ THWOK! Metallo manages to knock Supergirl aside in the midst of their struggle, then begins his march toward the kryptonian holding his ‘heart’.
“You gimme that damned kryptonite, or so God help me, I’m gonna wring your neck till your eyes pop out of your skull!”
“Superboy, just take it and run! The further away it is, the quicker I can take this psycho down.” Supergirl shouts, prying a slim tree from its root and using it as a ‘bat’ to take a swing at the distracted man-turned-machine, who abruptly finds himself laying on his side after impact.
“On it!” And with that, the clone takes off down the walkway in the opposite direction of the fight. This in turn relieves Supergirl of her ailment that offers the cyborg an edge, shifting the tide of their bout. It became very apparent when Metallo stood and launched at Kara with a punch - one she effortlessly caught within her palm.
“Let’s face it, Tall, tin, and mean… This is just about over.” With a hook following, the villain stumbles backwards. Supergirl follows along with a glide, delivering a myriad of punches until he’s backed up against a tree.
“Last chance to go quietly, Metallo. You don’t have a leg to stand on anymore in this fight.”
“Huh, you think so? Well then….” FFFFRRRSSSHH! Lifting his hands, the cyborg began emitting a kryptonite glow from them. Simultaneously blinding and weakening Supergirl before repelling the heroine with a shockwave.
“Fine. Forget the stupid kryptonite… I’ll use the rest of my reserves burning a hole through your skull!” With a wicked grin spreading across his face, Metallo moves to stand over the groaning blonde laying on a grassy spread. Taking aim, he charges a set of beam cannons this time.
“GaaaAAAAAAAHHHHH!!” A scream of agony erupts from the heroine, which compels Superboy to halt in his tracks.
“I think that’s Supergirl…” The boy comments, turning and squinting toward the direction he came from. Though fairly far, he could make out that Metallo was firing some sort of green laser at someone.
“It is Supergirl. He’s still able to use kryptonite without this?”
“He may have power stored elsewhere in his body that serves as a short-term backup.” Meredith theorizes, using the sphere-shaped droid’s telescope to study the scene. Meantime, the clone’s face contorts into an uncomfortable frown as the screaming continues. A brow twitching as his hands tighten around the crystal, his sense blurring out everything but his vision and Supergirl’s voice.
“Hmm. I suppose you could leave the kryptonite behind and return to aid her.” Meredith proposes, only to be met by silence from the clone.
The boy in question was consumed in a steady growth of frustration. That frustration eventually boils into anger, and his teeth grit as his lips peel within a snarl.
“Superboy? Can you hear me?” Meredith prods, but still no answer.
“Are you okay? Do you nee– Uh!?” The scientist cuts off at what she sees through her droid’s lense. A static-like effect begins to crackle around Superboy’s body in glimpses of red. His eyes fill with illuminating red that drowns even his pupils in his fit of burning rage. Before long those crackles desist and are replaced by a thick aura that resembles live fire, enveloping his body within intense red.
“Get off of her…” He murmurs under his breath. His hands clutching tighter and tighter until finally — KRSSHT — the kryptonite shatters under the pressure of his grip. Those pieces then break down further from the sheer animosity of his aura. The boy finally snapped.
“GET OFF OF HER!” He bellows upon taking off with a powerful gust that blows the sphere beside him, as well as leaves, skyward. Flying back toward the fight, he preps a tight clenching fist, one swarming with flaring energy. Metallo, turning toward the source of the outcry, was left staring with wide eyes as the peculiar boy came rushing at him.
The delivery of the punch sends Metallo off like a torpedo, speeding toward the side of a building in the distance. The villain hits it with a CRUNCH!, wincing while practically imbued into the wall. Blinded by emotion, Superboy kept the pressure up and charged at Metallo with his fists outstretched in front of him.
The clone rams his adversary through several walls and buildings until they reach the end of the stretch, altering to sliding and ruining the street with every foot Superboy grinds Metallo over. The two come to a stop in the middle of an intersection, center of pedestrian eyes, but the kryptonian’s assault doesn’t end just yet.
Relentlessly, the boy begins swinging at the villain’s face with all of his strength, each blow jerking Metallo’s head from one side to the other. Civilians observe the display with either fascination or horror, but none of them dares to interfere. Not when the boy resembles something along the lines of a red-eye demon, even when blood is finally drawn after what feels like an eternity.
“Superboy, that’s enough!” Supergirl shouts as she swoops down to catch the boy’s raised fist by the wrist, preventing him from continuing. However, he simply uses his free hand to deliver another blow, one that sends droplets splattering onto the street beside the unconscious villain.
“Stop. Stop! He’s down! You won!” The blonde insists, swiftly reaching to restrain both of the boy’s hands. A struggle ensues, but Kara’s grip remains unbroken. Another fit of frustration, that same crimson energy begins to build around his hands again. This time, something far different transpires. Supergirl’s eyes are swallowed up by red in a similar fashion as Superboy’s, and a flash of memories play before the two. Kara Zor-EL’s memories, to be exact. From her first retained memory, to her former daily life back on krypton, to the desperation and panic of the planet’s people, and finally to watching krypton’s demise from a pod. Every emotion in between being shared with the clone, as if it were his own experiences.
“What the…?” Supergirl releases her grip on the clone to cradle her head, trying to make sense of what just happened. Below her, Superboy was doing the same. He rises to step off the machine’s body and stand on his feet, looking around in the meantime to make sure he was still on earth.
[ This blog post is private ]
[ This blog post is private ]
[ This blog post is private ]
04/10/2021 08:46 PM
All New Superboy Info
Legal Name: N/A
Hair: Jet black
Powers: Inhuman speed & flight are his only known powers for now.
Residents: Las Vegas, Nevada
Background: A clone made by CADMUS under Lex Luthor's payroll. Though he was likely determined to be terminated when deemed unnecessary by Lex, Meredith - the scientist who had a hand in the clone's creation - helps Superboy escape the underground facility below the Lex Corp building via telepathy. He now resides with Dr. Meredith within Nevada.
04/10/2021 07:34 PM
All New Superboy! #1
[ Mojave Desert, North of Las Vegas ]
Through the desert land that sits between California and Nevada, the kryptonian in jet black sprints through the barren stretch with dirt trailing behind, and no sign of exhaustion stopping him any time soon. No doubt the sweltering, hot sun’s embrace aids in keeping him energetic instead of dwindling in pace thanks to a certain half of his dna.
It was also thanks to his extraterrestrial half that he was able to zero in on the coordinates the mysterious voice provided faster than almost any other means of travel.
When his eyes spot a ravenette dressed in dark casual wear standing near a vehicle in the distance, he knows he’s finally reached his destination. Eventually, he desists his running and glides along the ground, skidding to a stop that leaves him three feet away from the woman. As the dust settles, the two take a moment to trade looks in silence, studying one another.
“Glad you were able to find your way to me with such ease. How are you feeling after traveling?” She, Meredith, finally ends the silence with a welcoming smile. Though, all she receives is a blank gaze in turn.
“I only detect an increased heartbeat rate. Nothing besides that. I am unharmed and well.” He answers in a stoic manner.
“I see. You exceed human capability in terms of movement and stamina, so I’d say it’s safe to assume you’ve successfully inherited more from the process.” She muses, a hand raising to her face, its respective thumb and point finger cradling her chin in thought.
“Have you tried flying while making your way here?” A question that catches the boy off guard, evident by his eyes widening. His brows wrinkle as his eyes advert from hers, contemplating why he hadn’t tried - wondering if he’s even capable of such.
“No… I didn’t think to try. Sprinting seemed efficient enough.”
“Understandable. Still, why don’t you give it a try? Maybe you’ll surprise us both.” She suggests, and he heeds it. Tilting his head back to glare up at the great blue sky above, he bends his knees a few degrees and clenches his hands into fists. Then— He takes an abrupt impressive leap into the air, dispersing a gust of wind that somewhat startles the woman.
Like a torpedo, he ascends with no real clarity of what he hopes to do. He just keeps going and going until finally gravity nullifies the momentum of his jump, then begins pulling him back down. Much to his dismay. Upon looking down, a sense of panic strikes him. Like worms crawling underneath his skin, fear spreads and begins to cloud his judgment, though not entirely.
“Fly… Fly! I can fly just like Superman. I can just like Superman.. I can fly just like SUPERMAN!” He cries out, hoping his body listens and picks up on the realization as he plummets without an ounce of control, flipping about like a rag doll in the wind. Just seconds later, Meredith spots him dropping out of control. Worry instantly fills her.
“Superboy!” She exclaims, her hand extending and her eyes becoming consumed in pools of crimson. However, before she can do anything, the boy suddenly pauses in place about 50 feet above ground. Just as quickly as it came, her eyes revert back to normal.
Above, the child was breathing frantically through his nose, his eyes fixed upon the solid ground below. All it seemingly took was the desperate thought of wanting to halt in place — to just float in place.
“Y-you.. You did it, Superboy! Now, can you carefully bring yourself back down?” With the lady’s voice in his ears, his eyes shift toward her briefly then to any ideal place to land. First thing first, he straightens himself out. The youth begins advancing forward ever so slowly, but not descending. His body feeling like a foreign vehicle, more so than it already did to the artificial newborn.
“Hnnn…” His frustration was steadily growing.
“Are you okay up there? Where are you going?”
“I’m trying to land, but this is proving to be difficult… I’m not too sure how this works.”
“Don’t worry, just take your time. I’ll meet you wherever you land.” She assures, which he finds comfort in knowing. In fact, it makes him that much more determined to get down. He spends about two minutes trying to navigate himself, only managing to stop in his tracks, ascend a bit, and descend a bit. When he notices somewhat of a pattern with his flight, he makes the decision to relax his entire body. That very moment of relaxing results in him dropping with the help of gravity again.
“Gu-aaaaaah!” The boy yells out mid drop, though finds his fall cushioned by something that snaps under him and tumbles over, sending him rolling a short distance on the ground. The sound of tires coming to a screeching halt draws his attention, and there’s the woman climbing out of her car and hurrying toward him. He begins pushing himself up to stand on his feet, swatting himself down to dust off his suit.
“My goodness, are you okay? Are you in any pain?”
“No. Something broke my fall, anyway. I’m completely fine.”
“Glad you have invulnerability, because that something was a cactus.” She gestures toward the green plant lying on the ground nearby.
“Huh. Didn’t feel a thing.”
“Splendid. How about we head back to my home? I can help you develop a better understanding of your powers, as well as controlling them. Plus, you’d have a place to call home.”
“That would be beneficial… I accept your offer…” he trails off, squinting curiously when it dawns on him that he doesn’t know the woman’s name.
“Meredith. Dr. Meredith, one of the handful responsible for giving you life.”
[ Meredith's Home, Nevada ]
Since agreeing to take residency within Meredith's place, It was becoming ever apparent that there was more to the woman than he could have imagined. Her manor resides in an isolated area, sitting at the clif of elevated land. Honestly, Superboy couldn't help but to question how the supporting foundation underneath it was capable of holding up the entire structure so well. Though, that pales in comparison to what the interior holds. The way the woman's home was implemented with technology made it feel as if it was alive and conscious. The kitchen, living room, and even half the doors react to physical presence and her voice. The kitchen counter rises on command, and retracts back into the floor when no individual is detected in proximity - the same for the furniture elsewhere inside. She also brings up holographic screens with a gesture or phrase, one capable of accessing the internet, storing her compiled data, making a call, and playing video feed. The tv and other devices seem outdated and devoid of any unique purpose, but he hasn't bothered prodding her about how she lives her life, as curious as he may be. Her fixation on him aids in distracting him from such.
A day passes before the two begin testing his capabilities in her backyard and early as possible. A yard that converts between an artificial spread of grass and a pool, both contained within a rectangle picket fence. It doesn't take long to discover that the surroundings aren't exactly what it appears to be. While in the process of learning to fly, there's more than occasional bump into a hidden wall that far extends the height the fence, and another transparent surface that keeps the boy from leaving craters with every harsh landing he makes. The session goes on for hours and would likely proceed past noon. Right now, the clone is flying within a controlled pattern, looping in circles at a gentle pace. It's clear to see he's developed some level of understanding of how his flight works.
"You're doing well, Superboy. Seems you've learned to control the momentum of your flight. You haven't went veering off into a wall in quite some time!" Meredith praises from her seat near the entrance, legs crossed and transparent tablet in hand. The item mentioned being used to monitor his speed and heartbeat.
"I think I'm picking up on how it works, but it's difficult to manage any faster than this. Still, I feel I can easily improve on it." The youth responds without breaking focus on what he was doing. Meanwhile, the woman's eyes settle onto the device in hand, tapping away before giving directions.
"How about building on your ascend and descend movements? Learning to fluently move within those maneuvers could be the key to gaining a perfect comprehension of your flying." A suggestion that has him stopping in his tracks, then gradually moving skyward. Slowly and awkwardly, the boy seemingly loses some of control and begins gradually flipping on his way up.
"It shouldn't be this difficult to do this..." He huffs in annoyance, soon lightly making contact with the top of the barrier twenty feet above. From there he descends just as gradual, arms extending to his sides while fidgeting to maintain balance in his stomach-down position.
“It’s totally normal. It’s not like you had any opportunities to use your powers while you were in the labs. Just keep calm and take your time.” Meredith encourages. For a moment, silence settles in as the boy tries to find a pattern behind rising and lowering with control. Then, his startled yelps put an end to it, followed by the thunderous impact of him colliding with the surface overhead, then him dropping at an alarming rate. He would’ve landed twice as harshly, but luckily his flight halts him mere meters above the grass just before he does.
“Oof.”Instead, he promptly drops down with a much lighter force.
“Why don’t you take a momentary break, Superboy. We can address other aspects of your life besides the more obvious of the lot.” Meredith suggests, standing up from her seat as she gestures for the other to follow her back inside. After pushing himself back onto his feet, the young hero-in-the-making does just that. Inside, the two settle within dining room, sitting across from one another.
“Are you thirsty? Hungry, perhaps?” She asks with deep curiosity, brow rising and all. Much to her delight, she receives the most ideal answer possible.
“No. I’m not exactly sure how to tell if I’m hungry or not… The solar energy my body absorbs sustains me, so I theorize I won’t know until my cells run out of resources.” He explains casually, knowledge retained from what was implanted within his mind.
“Wonderful! Superman’s physiology is serving you quite well, then. You were isolated for months under that building. Gives a reason to believe you store energy much like a chargeable battery. It dwells until dispersed.” She muses, piquing the boy’s attention even further.
“Superman’s physiology… Were you in charge of my creation?”
“Not quite, though I was heavily invested in you. I did my best to find a perfect balance of DNA that could stabilize your creation. We made several attempts using Superman’s DNA, but you were perfect by far. An additional dna donor seemed to be the elusive fix for the failures.”
“I see. Why was I left in the sub floors of the Lex Corp building, by the way? Are you certain that I wasn’t a failure?”
Absolutely. The subjects before you were nothing like you. They were very much defective. We fixed their flaws in YOU. However, Lex one day decided that the project was no longer a necessity. We had to abandon it, much to my dismay. I suppose Luthor lost his motive for green lighting you after Superman died. I’ll never understand how that man’s mind functions.
You were stored away, likely to be terminated any day. I felt it was such a massive waste to let you die, so I helped you escape.”
“Hnn.. How did you do that, by the way? Your voice in my head?”
“Ah, that. I can’t share too many details about it, but you could say it’s a gift of mine. A very useful one.” An answer that earned a look from the boy.
“Why can’t you tell me?”
“Classified, I’m afraid.”
“You feel I’ll spread information about you?”
“No, not quite. It’s just a subject that serves as a, shall we say, a spiderweb that links to more complicated subjects.”
“I am more than prepared to listen until I understand them all.”
“Perhaps. However, I’d like you to focus your efforts toward yourself first. You’ve only experienced a fixed simulation of life in the world, Superboy. I want you to explore what it’s like outside the labs with a raw introduction to a real society.”
“Explore? Is there something from my knowledge of the world?”
“Yes, Superboy. You’re missing real-time experience. Something you’ll definitely need if you’re to replace Superman one day. Which is why I want you to go into the city and have a look around tomorrow. Observe the people, and keep an eye out for trouble if you can. It’ll help develop your mind.”
“Is that truly a good usage of my time? Protecting, I understand. But surveying civilians for no particular reason, I cannot quite fathom.”
“To become more human, of course. Superman interacts with everyday people when he’s out saving the day. It helps the public accept him, and it can very likely do the same for you. Just give it a try, Superboy. It’s all necessary in the long run.”
“I see. . . Very well, then. If it means being more like him, I’ll do it.”
“Good! In the meantime, I’ll monitor you from here. I’ll have an AI follow you around to record your progress for me, as well as provide live feedback. I’ll also try to prep more training methods for you.
“Understood. For now, I’ll head back out to continue learning how to fly.” The boy informs, his curiosity not quite satisfied, but dwindled enough to be pushed to the back of his mind. He rises to leave the table, though pauses briefly.
“If… there’s nothing more you want to say, that is.” He adds, peering over a shoulder.
“No, can’t say there’s any more I’d like to say. By all means, spend your free time however you’d like, Superboy.
Tune in for the next issue of ALL NEW SUPERBOY!
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