New StormStrike #51

The next day
Jai watched from a distance as Travis talked to Aimee in the open area of the StormStrike Compound which showed the battle scars. She noticed someone walked up to her side. She looked out the corner of her eye then returned her attention to the other two. Jai was a little surprised by the silence after a minute. She broke the silence by deciding to speak first. "What do you need?"
Talia looked at Jai then looked back at Travis with Aimee. "Do you think it's a good idea having him around?" She took a quick breath. "After all, he was the one that ran around as Lord Omega and caused a lot of deaths."
"I know," Jai said softly with the slightest hint of sadness. She quickly looked at Talia who just glared at her. "But shouldn't you be the most likely to accept what happened to him? I mean you were taken over as well." After Talia looked to Travis and Aimee then back her without a word, Jai continued, "Mind you, you weren't taken over as long or by someone as bad. But I would think you would be the most understanding. Have you spoken to him at all about that?"
Talia turned away as she said, "We have nothing to discuss." She took a step away then stopped. Without a look back, she said, "Remember that we leave for Russia tomorrow morning."
Jai sighed as Talia walked away. She could just watch in disbelief at Talia. Jai looked back at Travis to see he looked back at her. She gave a very small smile then turned away. Jai began to walk towards the hangar. Before she was halfway to the hangar, she noticed he dropped down in front of her.
Travis said, "Hi." After she nodded, he continued, "You and I barely said two words to each other since well, you know."
Jai looked over her shoulder to see Aimee sitting on the grass alone. She looked back at Travis. "How is she doing?"
"She just found out her mother also died in the accident that killed her father and replaced by a machine. How do you think she's doing?" Travis looked at Aimee a second then returned his attention to Jai. "I didn't mean it to sound like that. But honestly, she's taking it rather well. Too well if you ask me."
"I can't pretend to understand why she is your mission. But I really wish you'd reconsider joining the team. Is your mission that important?"
Jai asked, "You're expected to give up your life for whatever the mission is? What about your happiness? What about regaining your place in the world? You can't just live for what someone else wants to."
Travis grinned. "My happiness? If I didn't know better, I'd say you actually care about that." When Jai gave a frown, he let out a small laugh. "Jai, don't worry. I was given two important missions and Aimee is the first."
Jai asked, "Two? What's the second?"
Travis looked over his shoulder at the hangar then over the other to see a familiar car parked in front of the main building. He looked back at Jai. "I was told to not put off my happiness." When her facial expression changed to puzzlement, he said, "You'll find out what I mean soon enough." He looked to Aimee. "But first I need to handle this."
Aurora stood in the hallway against the wall with her arms folded across her chest. She waited until the door near her opened and her brother exited. When their eyes met, she opened her mouth to begin to speak but was cut off.
"I really don't want to talk about it anymore." Nathan took a step to walk around her but was a little surprised how quickly she maneuvered herself into his way. He huffed then said, "Not now."
"Look, something is going on with our sister and I know you know what it is. And then you are now not going back to Russia with the rest of us and staying here. I want answers."
Nathan noticed some support staff members walking towards them carrying small crates. He gently pushed Aurora out of the way and waited for them to pass. He leaned closer to her and said softly, "It's something she has to tell you herself."
Aurora gave a small grin. "I understand you don't want to betray her trust but I just want to help."
"You can't help her unless she wants you to. As for my staying, I'm going to help put this place back in working order like I did before. Besides, I wasn't going to be part of the team training." When he saw the look on her face, Nathan nodded. "I'm not exactly the best person to teach others how to work well together. With Travis here, the Hawk on call, and now myself, we should be able to take care of anything that can come up until your team returns." He let out a very small laugh. "Your team. You just make sure you don't embarrass me."
Aurora sighed. "You're changing the subject from Talia."
"Fine. You try talking to her and see how far you get."
As he turned and started walking away from her, Aurora called out, "So you want me to give up on her?"
Nathan stopped but did not look back to her. He said so softly that even she did not hear him, "No. And I'd be disappointed if you did." He continued on his way as his youngest sister watched on.
The next day, Talia walked towards the jet with Nathan who carried a small bag. She stopped as she watched several people gathered around the jet. She could tell that her brother stopped and came to her side even though she did not look to him. Talia took a moment to not say anything and appreciated that he did not say anything as well. She said, "I really wish you were coming with me."
"You'll do fine." After she looked up at him, Nathan continued, "You are the second best agent of the FSB remember."
Talia let out a small laugh. She was surprised that it was the first one she had in a while. She extended her hand. "Give me my bag. You know I hate long goodbyes where you're concerned so we may as well say it now."
Nathan gave her a subtle nod as he handed her the bag as Jai walked by with Kurt and Seth. He looked at them as they passed then gave his twin sister a small playful nudge for her to head on to the jet. He walked a step behind her until she stopped and looked over her shoulder at him. He frowned. "What? I'm going to say bye to my other sister too."
Kurt who talked on his cell phone pressed the button to end the call as they reached the jet. He looked at Seth and said offhandedly, "It's Emerson." He looked at Jai who gave him a blank stare. "You know, Mathew Emerson," he said in a tone as if she should know the name. However, Kurt noticed that her facial expression went unchanged. He noticed if anything she gave him a rather unmoved expression. "The New York City D.A."
Jai sighed as she ruffled up her hair with her left hand while she made a sour face. "Are they still not over that whole Chrysler Building thing yet? That wasn't even our fault. It's not like we asked Duncan to drop that thing on us."
Kurt let out a small laugh. "That's not why he was calling. It's nothing for you to worry about." He looked at Seth then back to Jai. "Whether you like it or not, Storm putting a dent in the whole Metahunters has cyborgs thing opened up a whole new ballgame out there. There are a lot of changes happening out there. Some faster, some slow. Some good, some bad. I'm to act as a federal liaison to a lot of state and local authorities on many metahuman issues we now have to deal with. So basically, I'll be answering any questions or help with any suggestions they may need." He looked at Seth again then returned to Jai. "Therefore, Seth will be more actively working with you when you get back."
Jai frowned as she looked at Seth. "Damn." She turned to walk into the jet.
Seth said to Kurt as he eyed Jai, "She will warm up to me sooner or later, right?"
"Doubt it." Kurt turned and walked back as Seth stared at jet as he saw Jai making her way into the cockpit.
Nathan said to Aurora who stood next to Steven, "Take care of yourself."
Aurora said offhandedly, "Sure. You too."
As Aurora walked to enter the jet, Nathan said to Steven, "And you."
Steven looked at him. "I know. If I allow her to get hurt, you will hurt me."
Nathan shook his head. "No." He walked closer to Steven. "You may not understand what I'm about to tell you now. You may have to be the one who is there for my sisters."
After Nathan turned away, Steven said with a puzzled tone, "Sure."
Inside the jet cockpit, Jai looked at the instrument panel. She glared at it then looked back at Talia who sat in the first seat. "Isn't these coordinates going to take us into?"
Talia cut her off. "Yes. Is there a problem? That's where you will be doing your training." As Jai was about to speak, Talia continued, "And I remember them saying that I am the trainer and you are the trainees. It's not your place to question my methods."
Jai said as she turned back, "I knew this was not going to be a great idea." She said into the radio, "Are we clear to leave?"
Ray Fulton's voice came back through the radio. "In a few minutes, Jai. And good luck."
"Gotcha." She looked as Drake sat in the co-pilot seat next to her. Jai said into the radio as she gave him a stare, "And you will have that other jet repaired by the time we get back, right?"
As Drake gave her a subtle sly grin, Ray returned through the radio, "You know I will. And when you get back, I have to teach you the weapons systems."
Jai looked out the window to garage to see her black 1969 Dodge Charger which shined from a recent wax job she did. She then noticed on the roof of the garage Travis stood watching. She whispered very softly, "See you later." She noticed he gave a single wave then turned and flew off. That was when she realized he either read her lips or actually heard her. She had actually forgotten how his senses were heightened and she could not stop the small grin she made because of it.
Ray's voice came through the radio, "Jai, you're clear now."
In the back, Ryder sat across from Taylor. He looked at her as she looked out the window. "Mike's cousin, huh?" When she looked at him, Ryder continued, "I almost forgot how much he liked flying."
Taylor returned blandly, "He used to always get airsick."
"I know." Ryder gave her a smile. "It was a small joke."
Taylor eyed him for a brief second. She said as she looked back out the window as the jet began to take off, "Very small joke."
On the ground, Seth watched as the jet flew off into the evening sky with Kurt and Nathan next to him. When the jet was completely out of sight, Seth looked at Kurt. "So what now?"
Nathan frowned at him. "We get to work to get this place back in order."
After Nathan turned and walked away from them, Seth said to Kurt, "I like him. He's someone who doesn't waste time. Are you sure we can't make some kind of trade with the FSB for him?"
Kurt shook his head. "No. I already tried." He looked skyward again even the jet was already gone. "I have to go recruit the newest member of the support staff with Victoria." He looked at Seth. "I trust that I'm leaving Storm in good hands."
An hour later, the sky on the other side of the planet was still dark from night. The silence of the area was suddenly filled with the sound of the jet flying in. Jai used the vertical landing to lower the jet in a small clearing in the woods. Jai looked back at Talia and said, "We're here. But there's nothing out here."
Talia said, "We'll have a small hike."
Aurora who sat behind her sister asked, "Where are we?"
As she got out of her seat, Talia replied sharply, "Siberia." Talia grabbed up her bag. "Now we head out."
Aurora asked, "Who agreed we'd go to Siberia?"
"You did when you signed on with StormStrike." Talia walked out of the jet as Aurora gave Jai a puzzled shrug. Talia walked out into the night and took a deep breath. When the rest of those on the jet walked out, Talia pointed towards the north. "We head that way. It's about a kilometer away." She looked over her shoulder at them. "I'll meet you there." Before any protest could be made, Talia shot herself skyward and flew north. As she was halfway there, she looked to the ground to see something speeding by her. She already knew what caused that even before she reached the destination.
Talia landed as she saw Steven looking around the damaged installation. "You left the rest of your team? Even I think that's cold."
Steven said to her, "Recon. So what is this place?"
Talia looked at the damaged door that served as the entrance. She looked around at the ground and the damaged nearby trees. Her mind returned to when she was thirteen when she last called this place by a single word. The same word she used to reply to him. "Home."
"You live here?"
Talia took a minute to think of her youth. "I used to. This is where I started my training." She walked to the broken entrance and placed a single hand on the broken doors. "This is where my brother began." She looked back at him. "And this is where Corbian began." She could tell he was about to ask something by the look on his face. Talia quickly said, "There are lower levels that we'll use more than anything. The upper level was destroyed for the most part."
"Destroyed by who?"
Talia thought back to the day she was last there as a teenager. "Colonel Sage and the team he led back then mostly. And Nathan did his fair share that day as well. However some of this I haven't seen before."
Steven asked, "Why do we have to train here?"
"Like I said already. My brother, myself, and even Corbian began here. This is where StormStrike will begin again."
Ariel Hunter once again stood on the roof of Hunter Enterprises. She looked to the sky as she waited until she noticed a very small spot that got slightly larger. When he swooped down to the roof in front of her, Ariel gave a smile grin. She waited for him to return the grin before she was the first to speak. "Travis." After he gave her a short silent nod, Ariel put her arms out to hug him. As she wrapped her arms around him, Ariel said, "It's incredible that you're still alive after all this time."
Travis replied blandly, "To me I was only gone for a couple of weeks."
Ariel pulled back to look him in the face to see he had a very serious expression on his face. "How can that be? You were gone for almost a year."
"Let's just say time moved a bit differently for me. It's a long story, Ari."
Ariel stared in disbelief for a second then pulled herself back into him. "I am just happy to see you alive." Ariel did not want to let go of him but forced herself to stop with the hug. "So what brings you here? I hope it was because I was one of the first people you wanted to see on your return."
"I did want to see you." Travis looked away from her and said with sadness, "I wanted to tell you how sorry I am about Mike."
Ariel reached for his face and gave a gentle pull so he would look at her. She smiled at him. "I already mourned Mike as I did you. I know Mike would've wanted me to continue on with my life. And I am still trying." She gave him another smile but he did not return it. "You know you shouldn't hurt yourself over it. Jai told me that Mike died protecting her. So that means he died a hero. I'm proud of him. Travis, you were his last friend. He met people after you but you were the last true friend he made."
"I want you to know that the one responsible has been destroyed. I wish I could tell you I was able to do it for you but this girl named Taylor did it from what I was told."
Ariel asked, "Taylor did it? Do you know who Taylor is?" After he shook his head, Ariel said, "She's Mike's cousin. On his mother's side." She eyed him intently. "Didn't you spend time catching up with everyone?"
"Mostly just talked to Steven and Jai. And then there is Aimee Kent." After Ariel gave him a puzzled expression, Travis continued, "Aimee is a long story and an unbelievable one as well." He thought a moment then said, "By the way, you know about the accident that killed her father, right?" After Ariel nodded, he said, "It seems her mother was somehow replaced by a Metahunter. They seem to be cyborgs now and the androids from before serve as their army." He studied Ariel's unchanged facial expression then said, "You're not that surprised."
"No. I've seen one before named Vincent who worked right here at Hunter Enterprises as a bodyguard for a former executive vice-president of the company. Only he didn't talk that much so to think they can impersonate a member of congress is a bit new to me. It seems we have a lot to discuss so why not go inside?"
Talia walked into a familiar place she visited on regular basis. This night was a little more crowded than normal. The lights were as dim as normal however with the room a little more filled with cigarette smoke than usual. She walked over to the bar and sat in her usual seat that was just vacated as she approached. When he saw her then gave her a gesture that he would be with her soon, Talia gave Mikhail a slight nod then reached into the bowl of peanuts to grab a small amount into her hand. She ate the peanuts until Mikhail made his way over to her.
"Here alone tonight?" After she gave another small nod, Mikhail asked as he poured a drink in the glass he placed in front of her, "So no other family member will be joining you? Like that brother you have?"
Talia responded, "He's in America right now." To Talia, it seemed to be too long since the last time she had been in this particular place as she did a quick look around the room before she returned her attention to the glass in front of her.
As she quickly downed the glass of Vodka, Mikhail asked, "Did you two have another fight?"
Talia gave a perplexed frown as she placed the glass back down on the bar. "No. He's over there on an assignment and will be back as soon as he's done."
"I see. And how is your sister? I like her. She pays for what she's served here."
Talia made a mean face at the obvious joke. "Shut up and pour me another one." As he poured her another drink, Talia gave a short sigh. "But if you must know, she's not that far away. She's visiting now."
"You seem a little strange tonight. Anything wrong?"
She shrugged then downed the drink. "I just have been feeling a little weird." She motioned for another refill. "Maybe it was seeing the entire family I didn't know recently again." She watched him pour another. "My mother tries to get close to me every chance she gets but I don't know how to react to that. My father barely acknowledges my presence which makes him the opposite of her. Yet I have no idea how to take him either." She downed the drink then said as she stared at the empty glass, "And then there's my other brother you haven't met yet. I think he and I get along somewhat what little interaction we've had." She placed the glass back down. When he was about to pour again, she placed her hand over the glass and shook her head.
Mikhail looked up as the door opened then looked back at Talia. "I think you know the person who just walked in."
Talia looked over her shoulder to see Aurora by the door with Steven. Talia looked back at Mikhail then said, "I'll need to have a little privacy with her. Take care of your other customers." As Mikhail walked away, Talia watched as Aurora made her way over as Steven took a seat a few seats away. Talia asked Aurora as she motioned to Steven, "He brought you all the way from Siberia?" After her younger sister gave her a nod, Talia said as she turned back, "Then he can take you back to Siberia."
"Talia, why are you being extra mean to me? Have I offended you?"
Talia replied while keeping her back to Aurora, "Not at all."
Aurora sat down next to Talia. "Then what's wrong? I'm asking because I care about you." She looked away then said, "Lord only knows why I do." She looked back at Talia who glared at her. "You don't make it easy." After a silent minute that only had Talia continue staring at Aurora, the younger sister broke the silence between the two. "But I don't give up easily. If you don't believe me then ask Rex next time you see him."
Talia tried to hold in the laugh but a small one got out. "I don't need to ask him about how stubborn you are."
Aurora retorted, "I would say we both got our stubbornness from our father." She took a small breath. "At least that's where Mom says I got it from."
Talia thought a moment. She got up from her seat and walked over to Steven. After she whispered something to him, Talia watched as Steven got up and walked out of the bar. Talia walked back over to sit next to Aurora who looked at the door that Steven left through. Talia said, "I told him to go back to Siberia." After Aurora stared at her, Talia said, "I told him I'd take you back. You may be someone who can answer a few questions I have about things concerning the family."
Aurora asked, "You mean you really want to talk to me?" She was rather surprised to say the least.
"What was it like growing up with our parents?"
Aurora took a deep breath to think a second. She then gave Talia a small smile. "That question could take me days to answer." Aurora adjusted herself in her seat then took another deep breath. "I guess the easy way to answer is they are different. Mom was always the one that paid more attention to me as far as just being a parent. Dad was more of a trainer with me. It's hard to explain."
Talia faced forward as she replied, "You don't have to. I get it." She looked into the mirror that aligned the back of the bar and looked at her reflection with Aurora next to her. "What about our brother?"
"Our? Normally you don't call him our brother." Aurora noticed the look Talia gave her. "Oh. You mean Rex. Well, Rex was just probably my best friend growing up. He was the one who watched after me the most and he can be a bit overprotective at times. I don't think he's that much different than Nathan in that area." Aurora was surprised by the laugh that came from Talia at the comment because she was completely serious. She waited a second then asked, "Can I ask what's been your deal lately?" After her sister just gave a kind of a grunt, Aurora said softly, "Nathan told me to just give up trying to find out. But I'm your sister and I want to help. You haven't been exactly the same since that whole Lord Omega thing to be honest."
As Aurora looked away, Talia stared at her younger sister. "You really mean that about wanting to help, don't you?"
"Sure I do."
"Why?" Talia asked. "Why haven't you given up on me yet?" When Aurora answered with a shrug, Talia sighed. "You're a stubborn one." As Aurora opened her mouth to speak, Talia noticed she suddenly stopped without moving. Talia looked around the bar and noticed nobody moved as everyone was frozen in place. She waved her hand in front of Aurora's face with no result. Talia looked around the bar again then saw a figure in the shadows at the far end that actually moved. She jumped off the barstool as she concentrated to look at the figure while she prepared herself to act. "You did this. Who are you?"
Inside her head, she heard his voice, "It has been a while."
Talia relaxed herself. "I wondered where you disappeared to. Are you here to remind me how I save the universe or something again?"
The robbed figure stepped out of the shadows and walked over to her. Again his words appeared inside her head instead of her ears. "I don't need to remind you what you already know."
Talia grimaced. "Would you mind stopping with that telepathy thing or whatever it is you do inside my head? Lately, I've had an intergalactic being inside my body and I'm really getting tired of things doing that."
This time he spoke. "Fair enough." He walked up to her where he was standing next to Aurora. He looked at Aurora for a moment. "Interesting."
"That's my sister if you don't know."
"I know who she is."
Talia sighed. "What are you doing here now? I've learned you don't appear to me without reason."
"You're learning. It has to do with your sister here. No matter how much you try to discourage her, she will never give up. You look at her as weak. And you are wrong. She's very tenacious. She's a survivor. You won't keep her away so you may as well embrace the fact she's family." He looked at Aurora then said, "And you do care about her."
"I barely know her."
He laughed slightly. "Like that matters. You act as if I don't know the truth about how you feel. It's important to you to bond with this one and be true to yourself."
Talia sat back down. "You always talk in riddles. I give up," she said exasperated.
He concentrated on Talia who then froze like the rest in the bar. He looked at Aurora again. He leaned closer to her then said softly, "It's especially good to see you again." In a bright flash of light, he vanished.
As Talia looked around, Aurora said, "I may be stubborn but it's not like you aren't." Aurora looked at Talia intently. "Did you suddenly change how you were sitting?" Before Talia could say anything, Aurora cut her off. "Forget it. I have a feeling you won't tell me anyhow."
Talia replied, "I wish I could explain it to you but I have no idea what you're talking about." She turned in her seat and stood up. "Let's go." She looked at Mikhail then spoke in Russian. "I will see you later." She felt the vibration on her hip. She answered her phone as she walked to the door as Aurora followed her. Talia listened then again spoke in Russian. "It will be taken care of." As she replaced the phone, she said to Aurora, "Emergency." Before the younger sister could speak, Talia grabbed her and swiftly flew skyward.
Jai walked into what looked to be the remains of a research lab. She noticed the place was a wreck like a bull elephant charged through it. She even noticed old blood stains everywhere. Jai thought how she really wanted to ask what happened here. She walked up through the mess. She kneeled down to pick up a small black box that was halfway buried underneath a rock. Jai slowly opened the box and saw two small needles inside with slots available for three others. She heard a slight noise behind her. Jai quickly spun around to see a pair of eyes on her. Jai said, "Drake, you shouldn't sneak up on people."
Drake responded, "I wasn't sneaking. If I wanted to sneak with my phase-shifting ability, you wouldn't know I was even here."
Jai frowned at him. "I'm not too sure about having you around. I don't even know your full name. Is Drake your first name or your last?"
"It's the only one you need to know for now." He walked into the room and looked around as he asked as she was about to speak, "What happened here?"
"I don't know. I've never been here before."
Drake looked at Jai. "Really? It seems you know enough people who spent some time here." As Jai eyed him, Drake said, "You haven't been down to the level below us yet? I broke into some locked door that was an elevator to a level below us. And a name on one door was Corbian."
"Corbian was here?"
Drake nodded. "It would seem like it."
Kurt drove the Jaguar down a tree-lined street in Georgetown then pulled into a driveway. After putting the car in park, he looked at the female in the passenger seat. "It figures she would live in Georgetown."
Victoria answered with just a nod and smile. She looked at the two-story house to her right. "Nice house though."
Kurt eyed the house. "I agree." He said as he unbuckled his seatbelt, "Let's see if we can convince her." He got out of the car as Victoria exited the passenger side. After they walked up to the porch, Kurt watched as Victoria pressed the doorbell. A few seconds later, the door opened and Kurt smiled at the familiar face that looked back at him with a blank stare. "Hello, Miss Harper."
Lacey asked, "Who are you?"
Kurt reached inside his suit jacket to the inside pocket. He withdrew his identification and showed it to her. "I'm Kurt Wade with the NSA. This is an associate of mine."
Lacey asked as she did not open the door further, "Is something wrong?"
Kurt shook his head. "No. We just need to talk to you. It has to do with a position in our organization for you actually."
Lacey laughed in a way that showed she was not taking what he said seriously. "What could I possibly have that you in the NSA would want?"
"A few things," Kurt replied. "First, you know how to handle the press since you used to be one of them. Second, your very public stance on metahumans makes you a prime candidate for the position." Kurt noticed her expression changed as she eyed him suspiciously. "It would be a lot easier if we could speak inside."
Lacey looked at Kurt for a moment then glanced at Victoria then returned her gaze to Kurt. She turned and motioned for them to enter. As they walked in, she said as she walked into the living room, "You have fifteen minutes." Lacey sat down in a chair next to her workstation she had in the room.
As Lacey watched them, Kurt said down on the couch and Victoria sat next to him. Kurt said, "I will be brief. As I said we have a job for you."
Lacey cut him off. "I have a job. I teach at Lincoln Academy besides being an author. I would think you NSA guys would know something that simple to find out."
Kurt looked at Victoria with a smile on his face. "I like her." He looked back at Lacey. "This wouldn't interfere with any of that. It's really a part-time position. You'd be the public relations director of StormStrike. You'd handle all things to do with media like interviews and such." Kurt noticed that Lacey seemed a little more interested now by the look in her eyes. "You have shown time and again your fairness when it comes to metahumans and Storm in particular."
Lacey asked, "So who would be the person I answer to? You?"
Kurt shook his head. "No. The person you'd report to would be her." Kurt gestured to the other on the couch. "Her name is Victoria Malloy and she's the StormStrike support chief of staff. She reports to either myself or the deputy director."
Lacey asked, "Didn't you have someone who did that job already? He walked out of an interview with me." She took a breath. "Rex Michaels."
Kurt just remembered the incident she spoke of. "Rex is the former deputy director but he's no longer with us." He thought now was not the time to explain that his true name is Rex Masters a very powerful metahuman that had everyone fooled. "So are you interested?"
Lacey gave a small grin. "Let's just say you got me intrigued."
Being carried by Talia, Aurora noticed that her sister changed direction towards the ground. She looked to where they were landing to see vehicles and buildings damaged and on fire with mass hysteria from the large crowd of people. Aurora asked, "What's up? Where are we?"
Talia landed in the middle of the street as a car flew through the air in front of them that slammed into a building as people continued to move in all directions. "Cover yourself, Aurora." As a male ran by them, Talia quickly grabbed him by the arm to make him stop. "Vlady!" When he looked at her, Talia asked in Russian, "What's going on?"
He answered back, "War!"
"Where is?" Talia was cut off by the sound of something being fired not too far away then an explosion. She only looked away to the direction of the sound for a second but when she looked back he was no longer there. And she was not surprised.
Aurora asked, "What is this place?"
Talia ordered, "Call the rest of your team in!" She noticed her younger sister was about to say something but Talia barked, "Now!" Talia withdrew her phone and pressed a button for speed-dial as her eyes continued to scan the area. She yelled into the phone in Russian, "So you must know where I am now! What the hell is going on? Call them off now!" She listened for a brief moment. "Yuri, you better get through to someone or I will stop them by any means necessary!" She looked at Aurora. "We can't wait for them to get here! Turn on your homing beacon!"
"My what?"
Talia sighed. She grabbed Aurora's arm roughly then pressed the communicator on her wrist. "It's on! Now watch yourself and try to protect as many of these metahumans as you can!"
Talia shook her head in disbelief as she mumbled in Russian, "You sure don't listen too well." She noticed Aurora's puzzled expression as she knew her younger sister did not speak the language. "Did you actually think Nathan and myself are the only active metahumans in Russia? Look, full explanations later. These place unofficially translates to roughly Liberation Town and these people are all low level metahumans. None of them are as powerful as me." She heard another explosion and looked away towards it as she saw the fire cloud it caused. "Or you for that matter."
Aurora glared at Talia. "I don't understand. Who is attacking them?" Aurora snapped her head around. She extended a magnetic field to slow down a shell from a tank's torrent that was headed right for them. She had to use all of her power to stop something show that fast and powerful.
Talia stepped in front of Aurora as a large tank ripped through two trucks on fire. "That should answer your question. We seem like we're going to have to stand between the people of Liberation Town and the Russian army."
As her sister stood her ground in front of her, Aurora looked at her communicator that still transmitted the homing beacon. She thought, "You guys better hurry."
Talia and Aurora stand against the Russian army. What is the reason for the attack? And will the other members of StormStrike arrive in time to help them? And what will be Lacey Harper's answer to the offer? Find out in the next issue

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