Post-Hounds’ Attack on Lost Haven
There has to be a better way. Senseless violence can’t be the only use of my powers. Sure, saving lives from lunatics does take the edge off of this crappy, thankless career. But pitching a hand to restore this city after one of our superhuman slugfests only goes so far, especially since we’re just cleaning up our own mess. And I bet there are plenty of ‘heroes’ who don’t even bother to do that, either. What’s the point of saving a city when you smash it to hell in the process?
Since going on patrol to beat up bad guys would not cut it, I had to look elsewhere for other opportunities. In this information age, you can easily find fan mail wherever you look. With message boards and internet blogs, people can express their opinions even without an email address, let alone a physical one. Some comments are heartwarming, others weird, and some can make you want to dump bleach in your eyes. Anonymity can bring both the best and the worse out of people. I just try to focus on the positive ones and bury the negative ones.
On my way back home from the clean-up effort for last night’s incident, I made a quick pitstop to change back into my regular clothes and hit up a pay phone. Who knew that these antiques are still around now, with everyone and their five year old toddler having a cell phone nowadays. Thank goodness, too. Using my personal cell phone would just be asking to be outed as Arachne. After checking to make sure the coast was clear, I picked up the pay phone receiver.
“Children’s Hospital of Pacific Point. How may I help you?” I heard a woman’s voice through the phone. “Hi, I’m calling in response to a letter I read on the internet,”
I spoke before pausing for a moment. Butterflies fluttered in my stomach because I was about ready to admit my superhero life to a stranger. Sure, it was going to be over the phone, so she would not see my face, but just saying it out load was nerve racking enough on its own. But I got my composure and said it anyway. “I’m Arachne.”
There was a brief pause before the woman on the other side of the line answered. Obviously any rational person would doubt a random lady calling on the phone and claiming she’s a superhero. “A girl wanted to see me,”
I added to my statement.
“Oh, right. Would Tuesday evening work for you?” “I’m busy all day Tuesday, but what about Thursday? I’m free then.”
“That would be perfect. Meet on the rooftop at six and we’ll let you in.” “I’ll be there.”
I would assume they would keep my visit a secret from the girl since they probably don’t want to get her hopes up and have them crushed if I don’t hold up my side of the bargain. Not that I would blame them. I probably wouldn’t believe a stranger on the phone who said that they were a high-profile superhero who wanted to visit a local children’s hospital. Hell, if I were a man, I wouldn’t be surprised if that woman on the other side of the line would be calling the feds.
There was, of course, a catch to this favor. The girl’s letter did not request me showing up in my Arachne costume. Even though there are real superheroes in this world, fictional characters are still popular. Yet this should not come as a surprise. There are books and movies about fictional athletes, detectives, and secret agents. I guess it was just a matter of time before someone ask the resident spider person to dress up as a fictional counterpart, that Spider-Gwen.
Normally, I wouldn’t dare to be caught dressed as that character, especially after Marvel handed me a cease and desist letter and then ripped off my likeness and pasted it on their existing character. I’ve gotten over the cease and desist, since it was probably justifiable, but to do the same thing back to me just ticks me off. But I’m not going to allow this little feud to get in the way of a sick little girl’s wish. If masquerading as a popular fiction character to brighten the day of a child who probably does not have much time left on this Earth, then I can swallow my own pride, especially when that hatred is either unjustified or misdirected.
My plan is more or less simple. I would use that hard-light hologram projector that Talus had recovered from the Game Genie a few weeks ago. With that little device, the costume I would be wearing would look better than anything an officially licensed movie could produce. The best thing about it was that after this little visit was over, all the evidence of the suit existing would disappear. Heck, I bet I could disguise my face and voice with a famous actress, like Emma Stone or something. Since it probably is not ethical, I’m certainly not doing that.
I just hope that I’m doing this for that kid’s sake and not just for my own.