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This story arc has been published as a novel!

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---

Welcome to the Jungle

The woman at the front desk of the YWCA handed Megan an address on a slip of paper while suggesting that it was a place more appropriate for "her type." Megan reshouldered her backpack and made her way back to the intersection with Main Street. She paused under a streetlight to pull the map from her jeans pocket.

"Great," she said, sighing. "Other side of Broadway."

Traffic stopped for the light, so she crossed Main and turned north toward the city center. The fluorescent spire of the new Trylon gleamed at the center of the skyline ahead of her. She supposed that if she walked another twenty blocks, she might see the top arc of the Perisphere as well. Maybe she'd go tomorrow, when she'd recovered from the bus ride.

She heard whistling air above and behind her and ducked. Someone scrabbled at her backpack from above. She reached up and back, gripped a handful of cloth, and helped change her assailant's momentum from "forward" to "down." He made a nasty crunching noise when he hit the pavement.

"Are you all right, miss?" a deep male voice said from above.

"Fine," she said. "I think he may have broken something in his fall."

A figure in midnight blue spandex, sporting a hood and a billowing black cape, landed lightly a few feet away. "You have excellent reflexes," he said, bending to examine the groaning figure.

"I'll tell my mom," she said. "Is he okay?"

"I think he's just broken his flight harness," the superhero said. He hauled her assailant up by the back of said harness. Wires and twisted metal trailed from a smashed box on the little man's chest. "Thanks, by the way. I've been trying to catch the Merlin here for a couple of weeks."

"She tried ta kill me," the Merlin said, trying to stop his bleeding nose with the patch of fabric visible just above his metal gauntlets. A few fake feathers tumbled to the pavement.

"Teaches you to mug women twice your size," the hero said. He turned a brilliant smile up at Megan from the depths of his hood. She wondered vaguely how he kept the hood from falling back. "I'll just get him out of your way, miss. I'd offer an escort, but it seems superfluous."

"Thanks," she said again. "Am I going the right way for the YPCA?"

The man cocked his head and thought. "Yep. Ten blocks northeast, by the rooftops. New in town?"

She nodded, stuffing the paper back into her pocket.

He grinned again and bounded to a rooftop, dragging the complaining Merlin behind him. Then he called down, "Welcome to Wonder City! I hope the rest of your stay is less eventful!"

Date: 2012-01-12 05:19 am (UTC)
the_leaky_pen: (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_leaky_pen
What a great beginning! I like it already!

Date: 2012-05-09 06:45 pm (UTC)
the_leaky_pen: (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_leaky_pen
So when I said I'd go through the Interlude this weekend, what I really meant was I'd spend the rest of this entire week re-reading ALL of Wonder City. Just rereading the first chapter through the lens of knowing what happens next is giving me chills.

Date: 2012-02-26 06:58 am (UTC)
sepdet: Samhain worshipping the veggies. Oooommm. (Okay, yes, catnip was involved.) (Default)
From: [personal profile] sepdet
HC, I've finally started in on Wonder City -- I know, I know, shoulda started ages ago! -- and I'm having a ball. I've been reading it every day for lunch this week.

It is, of course, enjoyable, despite my own ignorance of most superhero / para litereature beyond our Chill game long, long ago. The deadpan subversions like Megan flattening the idiot from above are my favorite part in the early going. That, and your endless creativity in coming up with diner / cafe / bar names (Great Scot indeed -- okay, I did have Superman comics and Superfriends when I was very small).

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