1 Feb 2013
Subject 13 #5 - Flare Out
Once again, Nasty uses strong language. Reader discretion advised.
"Sir, Subjects 4 and 7 have checked in. The Giuliano girl was the metahuman behind the attack. Subject 4 confirmed that with a scan of her mind. The girl's mother knows about her ability, too. The power manifested recently."
"Your hunch paid off again."
"Thank you, sir."
"Any suggestions on how to get the girl?"
"Her mother is apparently afraid of her. We could approach her, then pick up the girl at school. We can use the standard record keeping at the school once we have the mother's signature."
"Don't let her see Subjects 4 and 7 again. Use Subjects 6 and 11 instead."
"Of course, sir. Anything else?"
"Start a new file for Miss Giuliano - Subject 13."
Nasty and her mother reached W.H. Seward High School, neither wanting to speak to the other. Recognizing some of her classmates, Nasty kept her head down, not wanting to make eye contact with anyone. Mom, say something. Yell at me at least. This isn't like you. "Mom, want anything to drink before meeting Nordberg? Coffee?"
"Coffee will be fine, Natasha."
"Mom, what is wrong with you?"
"What are you talking about?"
"You haven't said a word to me since those agents talked to us."
"What was so special about them. It's not the first time I've lied to cops about my daughter's behavior."
"What behavior? Christ, Mom, I didn't do anything wrong!"
"Fine. You didn't do anything wrong. Just like when the school called me, and when the police brought me to the hospital, and all the other times you 'didn't do anything wrong.'"
"The hospital was three fucking years ago. You just can't let anything go, can you?"
"Watch your language, Natasha."
"Damnit, Mom! At least try believing me for once."
"Where is your Ms Nordberg."
Nasty clenched her fists, trying to calm down. "Second floor," she said through clenched teeth. "It's not far."
Nasty led her mother upstairs to the classroom. She saw the parents of one of her classmates leave. Damn. No chance to delay. She knocked on the door to get Ms. Nordberg's attention.
"Miss Giuliano," the teacher said. "Please, come in. Is this your mother?"
"Yeah," Nasty said.
Her mother held out her hand. "Maria Giuliano," she said, shaking Ms. Nordberg's hand. "Nice to meet you."
"I'm Natasha's English teacher, Liz Nordberg. I was looking forward to meeting you," Ms Nordberg said.
"Natasha never mentioned anything like that," Maria said.
Nasty rolled her eyes. No, all I did was rush you out of the house. Duh. "I tried, Mom."
"It's okay, Mrs. Giuliano," Ms Nordberg said.
"It's Ms," Maria corrected.
"I'm sorry. I understand. Please, have a seat."
Oh, no. You don't, Nasty thought as she sat down.
"How is Natasha doing?" Maria asked, getting comfortable in her chair. "Is she passing?"
"Her mark in my class is improving greatly. Miss Giuliano, did you show your mother your last essay?" Ms. Nordberg said.
"It slipped my mind," Nasty said.
"Do you still have the essay, Miss Giuliano?"
"In my locker, maybe. I can go get it."
"No, it's okay, Miss Giuliano."
"Maybe I should leave anyways?"
Maria looked at Ms. Nordberg then to her daughter. "Ms. Nordberg?"
"Thanks." Nasty stood up and left the room. She walked to a water fountain, and let it run. I hate this place. I knew better than to bring Mom. With a finger, Nasty checked the water to see how cold it was. She splashed some of the water on her forehead, then had a drink. As she straightened up from the fountain, she heard footsteps behind her. Nasty whirled around. She saw a girl with long sandy brown hair.
"Oh, Nas-- Natasha, isn't it?" the girl said. "Sorry."
Nasty glared at the girl as she tried to place her. "Don't sneak up like that." Oh, what's her name? Tanya? Trina? Tia? Something like that. What class do I have with her?
"Weren't you on the news?" the girl asked.
"Just wondering. Look, are you almost done with the fountain?"
Nasty bent down to get another drink. She smiled to herself when she heard the girl humph. Tia. That's her name. Standing back up, she said, "Done. Enjoy."
"Thanks," the girl said coldly. "Don't you live near where Tommy was attacked?"
Oh, don't start that. "Maybe."
"Well, either you do or you don't." The girl held back her hair and bent to get some water.
"What's it to you?"
"Two of the football team are out for the season and you don't care? We could make the playoffs this year."
"I don't watch football," Nasty said. "I find it's a waste of time." Betcha she's a cheerleader.
"Shows what you know. Why did you even bother to come to Seward?"
"None of your damned business." Careful, Natasha. Best not to hit her, not now.
"Excuse me for asking." The girl turned up her nose. "Oh, hi, Eric," she said, her tone of voice becoming pleasant.
"Hi, Tia. Hey, Tasha," Eric said.
OhGodohGodohGod! "Hi, Eric," Nasty said softly.
Tia glared at Nasty, then returned her attention to Eric. "Are you going to the game tomorrow?" she asked.
"It's tomorrow?" Eric said. "I can't. I promised Tasha that I'd study with her."
"With Nast-- with Natasha?" Tia said.
Almost used my nickname. Why so shocked, bitch? "Eric, if you want to go to the game, don't let me stop you," Nasty said.
"I really want to read your essay, Tasha," Eric said.
Keep calm, Natasha. "Really?" Remember who's watching!
"I really want to show you the new uniforms the squad has, Eric," Tia said.
Oh, don't whine, Bitch. "What time is the game?" Nasty asked.
"Four, four-thirty-ish," Tia answered.
"There. I won't be off work until six. I can come by here and see if the game's still going and meet you here, Eric." Way to go. You just conceded to the bitch.
"You don't mind, Tasha?" Eric asked.
Yes. I mind. I mind a lot. "Not at all."
Tia latched herself on to Eric's arm. "You have to see the uniforms, Eric."
Can't she wait until I'm gone before shaking her fucking pompoms at him? "I need to get a few things from my locker. I'll see you in class, Eric?"
"Sure. Oh, Mom wants to know if you wanted to have supper with us tomorrow."
"I'll let you know, okay?" Slowly, Nasty walked away from the fountain, away from Eric with Tia hanging off his arm. She entered the stairway, then stopped at the landing. Damnit! She slammed her hand into the wall. Damnit, why her? There's no way I can compete with her. Nasty felt a tingle in her hand. Looking, she saw a purple glow surround her hand. "Shit! Not now! Not now, damnit!"
"Tasha! Tasha, what's wrong?" Eric called.
Nasty heard footsteps approaching the stairwell. "I'm okay!" she yelled back. She held her glowing hand in front of her. How do I turn this off? The door to the stairs opened. Nasty turned around, holding her glowing hand behind her back, as Eric and Tia walked in.
"Tasha?" Eric said.
"I said I'm fine," Nasty said. Back down, Natasha. Eric's not the one in trouble.
"We heard you yell," Tia said.
"I didn't yell." Back down! You're close to yelling now.
"What's wrong?" Eric asked.
He's concerned about me? "Dizzy spell," Nasty lied. "I don't like heights."
"Dizzy spell," Tia repeated.
Nasty glared at the brunette. "Yes, a dizzy spell. I'm fine now." Get lost, Bitch.
"You're sure?" Eric asked. "I've never heard you like that before. You sounded scared."
"I'm fine now, Eric."
"If you say so."
"She does, Eric," Tia said. "C'mon, let's go."
Please, do. "I'm fine, Eric. Really."
"Okay. I'll see you tomorrow, Tasha."
"Bye, Eric. Tia." Damnit, he should be mine. Why did my hand flare now? Nasty watched as Eric and Tia left. When they were out of sight, Nasty brought her hand back out from behind her. She stared at her hand as it glowed.
"What the hell is happening to me?"
Name: Lashawna Johnson
Birthdate: December 12, 1977
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California
2.3cm long knife scar along upper arm.
Mother: Sandra Johnson, nee Lawrence
Father: Michael Johnson
Manipulation of ferrous metallic ores and alloys. Upper limit of material mass has been measured at 2.3 metric tons. Control drops as mass increases, with optimal control gone at 1.72 metric tons. Section G has created a ruidmentary suit of powered armour. Subject 5 has quickly adapted and improved on the design, amplifying the suit's capabilities with her own ability.
Subject 5 was the first metahuman successfully created in our labs. Her participation in field missions is to be restricted while she is studied.
[End Issue 5]
Next Issue: Nasty leaves home, possibly for good.