The big metal doors rattled open, revealing the hanger and kicking up dust. Travis and I both sneezed.

In the far left corner, a light shattered and went dark.

Still that didn’t detract from the awesomeness of the scene. I mean, you’ve got this huge room that could just as easily be on an aircraft carrier or the Death Star, and in the middle of it you’ve got the Heroes’ League jet, covered with some kind of form fitting white plastic, surrounded by a few other things under tarps.

Travis and I started pulling the tarps off. We’d uncovered Night Wolf’s corvette (still black and shiny) and Captain Commando’s motorcycle (red, white and blue) by the time we heard the hum of the elevator.

“Cassie’s back,” I said. I was pulling the tarp off a rack on the wall. The rack held ten small, silver jetpacks.

“Here’s what they did,” I said. “All the people who couldn’t fly got jetpacks so they could get to HQ and grab their stuff. They don’t have much of a range, but they fit in a briefcase.”

“Think it could hold me?” Travis picked one up. It wasn’t much longer than his hand.

“No idea.”

Cassie stepped into the hangar, still in costume from patrol. “What are you guys doing?” Then she noticed the motorcycle. She didn’t even wait for an answer before hopping on the seat. “Oh my god, Dad’s motorcycle. Does it work?”

“He’s going to get it to work,” Travis said.

I didn’t even have a chance to object. By the time I was able to think  of a response, Travis started in on how to solve our response time problem.

“The only problem I see with using this stuff,” Cassie said when he was finished, “is that I don’t know how to drive a motorcycle and none of us can fly a jet. Nick can teach us how to use the backpacks, but the rest of it…”

"I can fly a plane," Travis said.

"Jets are different," Cassie said.

“I think I know someone who might be able to get us lessons,” I said. Then I told them about the FBI and Isaac Lim.

“You were just sitting on that for days?” Cassie said.

“I was going to tell you on Monday at lunch,” I said, "but then Kayla showed up."

"She's my friend," Cassie said.

"I know," I said, "but she still blew my only chance to bring it up."

"Never mind that,” Travis said. “Do you have any idea how hard it is to qualify to work with the FBI?”

“We don’t qualify,” I said. “I think they’re just allowing us in for the publicity.”

“Who cares?” Travis said, “All that matters we get their stuff, or hey, our stuff. It’s our tax dollars paying for it.”

“Whatever,” Cassie said. “I’m changing back into clothes and taking a shower. Don’t come in.”

As she walked away, Travis asked me, “You think you can get this stuff working again?”

“I think so. Grandpa was pretty good about leaving directions.”

“Cool.” He walked back to the table and started looking at his Spanish cards.

I picked up one of the jetpacks. They wouldn’t be hard at all. The jet? That would be a challenge, but oh, <em>so</em> cool. I tried to remember where I’d seen the jet’s plans and documentation.

I found it in one of the file cabinets in the main room along with the car’s manual, the motorcycle’s and most of the others. The jet’s documentation was hundreds of pages long.

As I flipped through the three ring binder, I heard Cassie shout something from the bathroom.

I walked to the door and said, “What was that?”

“I said,” Cassie shouted again, “Who keeps on messing with the toilet paper?”

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About the author


Bio: Jim Zoetewey grew up in Holland, Michigan, near where L Frank Baum wrote The Wizard of Oz and other books in that series. Admittedly, Baum moved away more than sixty years before Jim was even born, but it's still kind of cool. Jim didn't attain his goal of never leaving school, but did prolong his stay as long as possible. He majored in religion and sociology at Hope College, gaining enough credits to obtain minors in ancient civilizations and creative writing—had he thought to submit applications to the relevant departments. He attended Western Theological Seminary for two years. He followed that up by getting a masters degree in sociology at Western Michigan University. Once out of school, he took up the most logical occupation for someone with his educational background: web developer and technical support. Simultaneously, he finished all but three credits of a masters in Information Systems, a degree that's actually relevant to his field. He's still not done. In the meantime, he's been writing stories about superheroes and posting them online at He's still not sure whether that was a good idea, but continues to do it anyway. He's also not sure why he's writing this in the third person, but he's never seen an author bio written in first person and doesn't want to rock the boat.

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