She arrived on Earth in a mysterious Symbio-Ship with false*This story takes place after “Power Girl #18”.
memories and awesome powers and abilities beyond that of mortal men and women....
FDC Presents "Powers Of Earth and Heaven"
Written By Paul Daimler
The glow of electric light and pollution filled the air between them and the city below.
A giant platform of stone hovered high above the city. Atlee, who was currently known as Terra—the third meta-human to bear that name, stood in it’s center, looking at the city below her.
“They’re down there somewhere.” Cyborg said, standing on the stone platform beside her. “And they have Molecule.”
“They almost had me.” Atlee said, the wind up here causing her ebony hair to dance around her face. “But, I managed to avoid them.”
“We’re not sure what Clock King and his Terror Titans are up too… why they’re kidnapping young heroes. But, we do know it’s for something called the Dark Side Club.” Donna Troy said, her main of ebony dancing around her. When the light from the city below struck her at certain angles, it appeared that the tapestry of the cosmos that reflected in the material of her jumpsuit also reflected in her dark hair. “We have to stop them. And we have to find where they’re taking the heroes.”
“But, why us?” Power Boy asked, hovering next to Donna Troy in the air next to the rock platform.
“I’m starting a new Teen Titans East.” Cyborg said, “I’m going to train the next batch of young heroes. And, the two of you are on my list of candidates. This way we can get you two some field experience.”
“I’m game.” Atlee smiled, “I know the first Terra was not a good person. And, the second one was killed by Black Adam. I want to redeem and honor those who came before.”
“You always this idealistic?” Cyborg asked, exchanging a sly smile with Donna Troy.
“Um…. I don’t know.” Atlee frowned. “I didn’t know that idealism was speaking the truth.”
Donna Troy laughed, “In this day and age, it unfortunately is. Your earnestness is awesome. You have to meet my sister Diana. You two would get along.”
“I am not idealistic.” Power Boy replied, “But, I do want to stop the Dark Side Club. They nearly grabbed me last week.”
“Well, Molecules alert came from this area.” Cyborg said, “And I see Persuader and Copperhead down there. So, chances are good that he’s down there somewhere.”
“Let’s smash ‘em!” Atlee exclaimed.
Power Boy looked at her quizzically. “Is that the best you can do?”
The Toyman reached toward the display case bearing the title, “BRAND NEW TEEN TITANS AND TITANS FOES!”
He grabbed the packaging for The All-New Terra, which bore the subtitle, “Atlee, The Amazing Earth-Girl From Beneath the Earth!” He also grabbed the figure in silver and blue, labeled “Persuader II”. She had long flowing auburn hair and an “Atomic Axe” plus a removable silver helmet that obscured her face.
Ripping them open, the man once known as Jack Nimball’s face lit up with glee.
“Take that!” Atlee said, as a column of rock slammed into the Persuader, knocking the girl aside.
“You seriously need to work on your battle banter.” Power Boy said with a chuckle as he wrestled with Copperhead.
“Power Girl says I am coming along nicely in my battle banter.” Atlee replied, flipping her shaggy ebony bangs out of her violet eyes.
“I bet.” Power Boy grunted, as Copperhead twisted around him even tighter.
“You related to Power Girl?” Atlee asked, using the column of stone to bury the Persuader in one spot and her axe in another.
“Not that I know of.” Power Boy shrugged, “All I know is that I was rocketed to Apokolips as a baby, and I was raised there by a kind family in the slums of Armegetto until I was ten. That’s when Darkseid discovered I had the ability to channel the emotions of others, which enhances my super-strength and flight. He had me trained as a warrior and schooled in the ways of Earth so I could be used as a secret agent. But, when Supergirl came to Apokolips, I fell in love with her and used a stolen Father Box to escape Apokolips and come to Earth where I took the name Power Boy.”
“He left out the part,” Cyborg commented as he and Donna Troy landed nearby, “Where he sort of stalked Supergirl and got his ass handed to him by her when she found out.”
“Hey!” Power Boy said, defensively, punching Copperhead in the face a couple times until the contortionist teen passed out. Power Boy held Copperhead out and away from his body by the neck of his costume. “I was having a hard time controlling how I channel emotions at the time. It made me a little unpredictable. I’m learning to control that!”
“Mostly.” Donna Troy remarked, her tone less jovial than Cyborg’s had been. “You are going to have to learn to control that. If you are picking up someone’s anger or madness and it makes you…unpredictable, then that makes you a liability to your team.”
“I’m working on it, Ms. Troy.” Power Boy said, his cheeks growing red.
“You’ll have to keep working at it.” Donna Troy told him, then turned to Cyborg. “Have you spoken to Raven? It seems like she’d be able to give him some pointers.”
“The witch hasn’t returned my calls yet.” Cyborg replied.
“I’ll talk to her.” Donna replied. “She’s been a bit distracted as of late due to her and Gar’s failed romance.”
“Hey!” Atlee shouted.
“What is it Terra?” Donna tried not to grimace when saying the code-name, but it was hard. The name Terra had some many negative and unhappy connotations. There had been the little traitor who’d helped the Terminator hand them over to the H.I.V.E. and nearly gotten them all killed. And then there had been the second Terra, the poor girl with no idea who she was that had been murdered by Black Adam during World War III.
“The Persuader and her axe just disapp—“
Atlee disappeared mid-sentence.
“Great Rhea!” Donna Troy exclaimed, turning to Cyborg.
“Hey! Where did Terra go?” Power Boy asked.
Cyborg turned on the quartz lens in his left eye, scanning the spectrum where Terra and Persuader had just been.
“There is an odd energy signature where they were.” Cyborg commented, “Nothing I recognize.”
“We need to call in there others.” Donna Troy said, “But first, we need to find out where Molecule is.”
Going over to Copperhead, she tilted the teen’s head up so that she could gaze into his eyes.
Copperhead’s eyes fluttered open.
“Where is Molecule?” Donna Troy asked.
“I’m not going to tell you.” Copperhead spat at her.
“Very well. If you are going to be that way, I will make you talk.” Donna sighed, unhooking the glowing blue lasso from her belt. Looping it around Copperhead, she smiled at him. “My lasso makes anyone obey me who’s will is less than mine. My assumption is that you have very little of your own will. So, this should be easy enough. Now… tell me, where is Molecule.”
“We have him….” Copperhead bit his bottom lip, trying to keep the words from spilling from his lips.
“Fighting it makes it painful.” Donna said gently, “If you just relax and obey there is no pain.”
“The Clock King will kill me….” Copperhead said, thrashing his head side to side. Power Boy kept his grip tight upon the Terror Titan.
“We can protect you from the Clock King.” Donna said gently, “You just need to obey and answer me.”
“We have him in a containment cylinder at our warehouse hide-out at 1965 SW Haney Street.” Copperhead said finally.
“There, that wasn’t so hard was it?” Donna Troy said. She uncoiled the lasso, locking it back into place on her belt. She turned to Cyborg, “I’m going to go and get Molecule. Get Blue Beetle here. His suit should have the tech to track that energy signature to figure out where Terra and Persuader disappeared to.”
“Sounds good.” Cyborg replied.
Donna Troy flew off into the night.
“She always that snappy and bossy?” Power Boy asked.
“Not normally.” Cyborg replied, “But, Genocide did something to her. And she’s been a little off since. Plus, Terra and Persuader just disappearing like that… Donna’s had a rough go of it lately.”
Power Boy opened his mouth to say something, but before he could finish, both he and Copperhead disappeared.
“Cyborg to Titans Tower West!” Cyborg shouted into his comlink. “I need Blue Beetle here ASAP!”
Jack Nimball, tossed the All-New Terra and Persuader action figures aside into his mounting pile. Ripping open the Power Boy and Copperhead action figures he cackled gleefully.
“You will not win this time Copperhead!” Jack Nimball said, using the “action punch” feature on the Power Boy figure to knock over the Copperhead figure.
He loved doing the voices almost as much as he loved new toys.
“Where the heck are we?!” Atlee exclaimed, looking around at the bright city streets around her. “This is definitely not New York! And, why is it daytime?”
Looking around, she frowned. The people on the sidewalk had stopped to look at her. Yeah, definitely not New York. Super-heroes and meta-humans were a dime a dozen there and rarely caused people to stop and stare.
“Well, I’m not sure how I got teleported away from the Titans and into a different time zone… hopefully I didn’t get shifted through time.” Atlee muttered. She stooped down, placing her hand against the ground. Through the sidewalk, she could feel the earth, down below sewer systems and everything that existed between the top of the city and the earth below.
She reached out for anything that would tell her where she was.
“This city doesn’t exist.” She frowned, removing her hand. The piece of earth the city was on did not exist. At least not on the earth she knew. She pressed her hand back down, reaching out through the Earth. She could feel New York and Metropolis and Gotham City, all slightly off. “Someone just dropped a whole new city in.”
She reached further down, trying to make contact with Strata, only to find it wasn’t there.
“Oh, that’s bad.” Atlee sighed, standing up. “I think this is an alternate earth.”
“You aren’t going to be so lucky this time!” The Persuader shouted, running at Atlee with her axe raised.
“Oh my. Very scary!” Atlee said, placing her hand back against the sidewalk. Huge chunks of rock burst through the ground, slamming into Persuader’s face—knocking her out.
Persuader landed on the ground, spread-eagle, the axe scuttling away.
“OK. Now that she’s temporarily taken care of…. How the heck do I get back to my Earth?” Atlee scratched her head, looking around. She turned her attention to one of the people staring at her, “Excuse me? But, is there a super-hero in this town? I need some assistance figuring out where I am.”
“Um… we’ve got Power Girl.” The person said.
“Oh wow! You guys have a Power Girl! That’s exciting! Kara is going to be so happy to hear that when I get back home. Usually on alternate earths there’s another Supergirl.” Atlee smiled. She turned her attention to the unconscious Persuader. “I need to do something with her so she doesn’t wake up and wreck havoc.”
Energy danced around her hand as the earth shifted. A cage of earth formed around Persuader rising up into the air, so that she was high in the sky and mostly away from any of the innocents wandering by on the street. Walking over to the dropped Atomic Axe, Atlee picked it up.
“Guess I’ll hold onto this for now.” She mumbled. A chunk of earth rose up beneath her and she manipulated it through the sky. “Now where the heck am I going to find Kara?”
She was nearly above the city when the rocks beneath her began to crumble and she felt her power over them drop away.
“OH! This is bad!” Atlee exclaimed as she fell toward the ground. “Maybe I should scream?”
“There’s no need to fear! Power Boy is here!” Power Boy said, catching Atlee in his arms.
“I don’t want you to ever lecture me about bad battle banter again!” Atlee told him as they lowered to the ground.
Power Boy laughed, “Any idea where we are?”
“No. Just that it’s not our Earth.” Atlee replied. “My powers seem to be malfunctioning slightly here… I do draw them from the Earth and my home—the hidden city of Strata. Perhaps since Strata does not exist here… my powers are on the fritz.”
“Weird. My powers feel stronger here. I also feel like I have more control over them here.” Power Boy said thoughtfully scratching his chin.
“Really? Everything feels off to me.” Atlee said.
“I feel the exact opposite. Almost like everything makes sense for the first time in a long time.”
“Uh-oh.” Atlee said.
“What?” Power Boy asked.
“I had the Persuader’s Atomic Axe on my flying rock when it crumbled.” Atlee said.
Atlee pointed, “It looks like the rock cage I imprisoned the Persuader in fell apart too. And she has her axe. And appears to be running right at us.”
“Oh.” Power Boy said, following the line of Atlee’s finger, just in time to see the Persuader running toward them full speed with her axe above her head.
“Are you sure that you don’t want to stick around Century City?” Karen Starr asked, trying to keep the nervousness from his voice.
“No. I’m good.” Sylvester Pemberton replied, looking up at the bright blue sky.
The sky above them was warm and blue as they sat on a blanket eating sandwiches in Century Park. The sound of the river slapping against the banks to their right was reassuring and calming on this pleasant afternoon.
The silence fell heavily between them with a thud.
“Listen,” Sylvester said finally. “It’s not you. That’s the problem. You aren’t the same Karen Starr I knew and loved. And, I’m not the same Sylvester Pemberton you knew. By your own admission, your Sylvester died before either of you could admit to have feelings for each other.”
“Yeah, but…” Karen didn’t finish the sentence. She’d been dating Andrew Vinson when the Sylvester Pemberton of her world had been killed through the manipulations of Injustice Unlimited. “We never had the time… He was gone too soon. He was killed just before Andrew dumped me, when I was starting the process of trying to find my true origins. Maybe this is a second chance for both of us.”
“What about Ian?”
“I really like Ian. Very much.” Karen said, feeling awkward at the mention of the handsome Century City police detective she’d been dating several months now. “But, I’ve been keeping a bit of a distance between us since I’ve returned from your Universe. So I can consider my feelings and sort through them.”
Syl smiled, “You’re not my Karen. You look so much like her. You sound so much like her. But, you just aren’t her. I’ve gone over it a million times in the time I’ve been on your world. I wish very much you were, but that’s not fair to either of us. If you’re being honest, you can admit that I’m not the same Syl and you don’t feel the same for me as you did for him. That perhaps you’re using me as an excuse to not move forward with Ian, that’s its not really because of me, but instead because you’re afraid of moving forward with Ian.”
“Wow.” Karen said, taking a slow breath. “That’s harsh.”
“But, true.” Syl said. “I fought with you against Monarch on my world. I was with you when my world died. I think I can be honest with you.”
Karen looked away, her eyes going across the river toward the Tower of Power. It’s single tall tower stood tall against the horizon. The office and convention spaces that surrounded it’s base were not visible from this spot… not unless she turned on her super-vision to look through the trees and building, telescoping it toward her so it appeared to be only a few feet away.
“Don’t get all quiet on me now.” Syl said. “I wasn’t trying to hurt your feelings.”
“I know. But it does hurt. Because in some ways you’re right, but mostly because I do care about you, and the feelings I have are in many ways different than the feelings and emotions I had for the Sylvester of my world. Surely you feel differently for me…” Karen let the sentence trail, not sure why she was doing this to herself. She did care very deeply for Ian, and really wanted a future with him. But, Sylvester had always been a lost opportunity in her life, and this felt like a great opportunity to try and correct that.
“You still remind me so much of the woman I loved and lost.” Sylvester said, bowing his head, unable to meet Karen’s eyes. “I allowed myself some freedom of emotion when we were on my world, because I thought that you would just go back to your world after Monarch was defeated. I had no idea that my entire world would be destroyed, and I’d be one of the few survivors. I have lost so much Karen, and truthfully you remind me of that.”
“Oh.” Karen said, blinking.
“I’m just trying to be honest. So, for me there is a lot of hurt that comes up when I look at you. That is totally my issue. Please understand that.” Sylvester sighed, heavily, “When you add that to the fact that you do look so much like the Karen Starr I loved… it’s just a lot. Far more baggage than either of us can deal with, more than any relationship can survive. I don’t want to hurt you. And, based on how you talk about Ian, how your face lights up when you talk about him… he’s going to make you happy. With me there would be nothing but strife and drama. You don’t deserve that. And, I don’t deserve that.”
Karen set her sandwich down.
“This is definitely not how I expected this lunch to go.” She said, swallowing a bite of sandwich.
“How did you expect it to go?” Sylvester asked.
“I figured we’d talk. Things would go well. And we’d be interrupted by super-villains. That’s normally how it goes when I’m on a date or with a guy I like and care about.” Karen sighed, taking a sip of diet soda. “Of course, since this is not going well in any way, the super-villains are nowhere to be found.”
Sylvester started laughing, “You know, my Karen didn’t have much of a sense of humor. She was always so gruff and serious.”
“I was like that when I was younger. It took awhile to figure out I was projecting my insecurities and letting them turn me into a tight-ass.” Karen smiled.
“I just want to get a fresh start here Karen.” Sylvester said finally, his voice heavy. “And that means not getting involves with the ghosts of old loves and girlfriends. If I run into Jonni Thunder here…” He shook his head, “Hopefully that won’t happen.”
“I’m all for new starts and making the most of them.” Karen said, smiling at him, and pushing her unhappiness with his decision out of her mind.
They continued eating for a bit, enjoying each other’s company.
“Oh Great.” Karen sighed.
“What?” Sylvester asked, looking up at her.
“My super-hearing just picked up some sort of fight in downtown Century City.” She groaned, “It’s awesome having all of my powers back and having them be stable. But, sometimes I do not miss the super-hearing. Do you know what I mean?”
“Not at all.” Sylvester chuckled, “Would you like some help?”
“That would be most wonderful.” Karen said, looking around. “We’re going to have to clear this stuff away and then find a place to change into our costumes.”
“OK. My powers are totally not being helpful!” Atlee screamed ducking out of the way just in time to avoid the Persuader’s Atomic Axe. “I’m not going to be able to avoid her forever!”
“That’s right wimp!” The Persuader said. “I don’t know where we are, but here you’re an even bigger chump!”
“HEY!” Atlee said, “That’s just rude!”
Hauling off, she punched Persuader.
“At least I still have above average strength.” Atlee commented as Persuader’s head snapped back, her silver helmet flying off. Looking down at her Atlee, frowned. “She’s pretty under the mask.”
“Why wouldn’t she be?” Power Boy asked, flying up beside her with Copperhead passed out and slung over his shoulder.
“Well, Power Girl and I have been watching a lot of horror movies together. Normally when somebody wears a mask like that they are hideously disfigured under it like Jason, or Michael Myers, or Meg Ryan.”
“Meg Ryan isn’t hideously disfigured.” Power Boy said smirking.
“Oh yes, she is.” Atlee nodded, “Power Girl told me that Meg Ryan totally mangled her own face in a fit of Cosmetic Surgery Overload. Apparently her lips are all wrong now.”
“Are you really that naïve?” Power Boy asked, shaking his head and covering his face with his palm.
“While it’s pretty sad what Meg Ryan’s done to herself, I don’t recall using that precise terminology. And I’m pretty sure that I’ve never met you before.”
Both Atlee and Power Boy looked up in the sky to see Power Girl and Skyman hovering several feet above.
“Who are you two? And who are those losers?” Power Girl asked.
“I’m Atlee, I go by Terra. This is Power Boy.” Atlee said, “We are from an alternate Earth.”
“Wait.” Power Girl said, studying Power Boy. “I know you.”
“I’m not from this Earth.” Power Boy shrugged, “You might know my alternate reality version here on this world.”
“Maybe.” Power Girl said, studying him intently, “You look just like some little twerp that I ran into over by the Tower of Power.”*
*See Power Girl Issue #8.
“I don’t even know where that is.” Power Boy shrugged.
“So, who are those guys?” Skyman asked, referring to Persuader and Copperhead.
“They call themselves the Terror Titans.” Atlee said, “They’ve been terrorizing the Teen Titans of our Earth. Kidnapping us, forcing us to fight in an underground fight club called the Dark Side Club.”
“Sounds positively grim.” Skyman remarked. “You must come from one of those grim and gritty Earths.”
“I guess.” Atlee shrugged, “It seems pretty nice to me.”
“I think everything seems pretty nice to you, Pollyanna.” Power Boy smirked.
“Who’s Pollyanna?” Atlee wrinkled her nose, “Is she someone Jason or Freddy Kruger fought?”
“Not even close.” Power Girl chuckled. “You like scary movies?”
“Oh yeah. Me and the Power Girl of our Earth watch them all the time. Do you like them?” Atlee asked.
“I don’t know.” Power Girl replied, “I don’t have a lot of time to watch movies, in all honesty. Busy juggling crime fighting, Justice League Europe, trying to have a private life… the usual.”
“Our Power Girl makes time to watch movies. We go once a week, unless we have to save the universe or something.” Atlee said.
“Good to know.” Power Girl remarked dryly, turning to Skyman. “Well, it would appear that whatever was going on here is done. False alarm, I suppose. But, we should probably figure out where to take the kids here.”
“I’m not a kid.” Power Boy said defensively.
“You’re around sixteen, right?” Power Girl asked.
“Seventeen and a half.” Power Boy replied, puffing up his chest.
“Yeah, you’re a kid. Come talk to me when you’re twenty-four.” Power Girl said dismissively. “We need to do something with those two boneheads you’ve knocked out there, and then I need to figure out which reality you four came from and get you back there.”
Suddenly the Persuader sprang to life, grabbing her Atomic Axe and then pulling Copperhead away from Power Boy.
“TAKE US TO THE OTHER TERROR TITANS!” Persuader said, using the Atomic Axe to cut open a gateway. She was through the opening with Copperhead within seconds.
“Well, that was unexpected.” Skyman commented wryly.
“I know.” Power Girl replied, “How very deux ex machina.”
“We can’t go back without them.” Atlee said, putting her hands on her hips. “It would be wrong to leave them here.”
“I’m sure we’ll see them again.” Power Girl said dismissively. “They’re super-villains. Before you know it they’ll be knocking over 7-11’s with the Royal Flush Gang.”
“You mean, the Royal Flush Gang of your world is also inept?” Atlee asked.
“Completely.” Power Girl nodded, “Worthless.”
“Now what?” Power Boy asked, brushing his black banks with it’s white streak out of his eyes.
“We should probably get you a proper haircut and do something about your skunk streak.” Power Girl told him.
Atlee snickered, covering her mouth.
“HEY!” Power Boy said.
“Nice cut out.” Skyman said, pointing at the circle in Power Boy’s chest area.
“If you’ve got the bod, show it.” Power Boy shrugged, “I don’t see you complaining about PeeGee’s cut-out.”
“DON’T CALL ME PEEGEE!” Power Girl snarled at him.
“Whoa! Calm down!” Power Boy said.
“What now?” Atlee asked.
“I think we should see what the Time Trapper has to say.” Skyman said calmly, “Maybe they’re from one of his Pocket Universes.”
“Maybe.” Power Girl said, “They could have shifted here for any number of reasons. None of which are probably that good. And—“ Before Power Girl could complete the sentence her communicator went off.
“What’s that?” Power Boy asked.
“You can hear that, eh?” Power Girl asked, “It’s keyed for super-hearing. It’s J.L.E frequency. Power Girl here.”
“What are they saying?” Atlee asked.
Power Boy cocked his head to the side, “Someone called Blue Jay is telling Power Girl that there are heroes and villains popping up all over the planet. And all of them seem to be claiming to be from a different universe.”
“Eavesdropping is rude.” Power Girl told him once the conversation was over. “You guys wait here. I’m going to go see the Time Trapper.”
Power Girl streaked off into the sky, heading toward the Tower of Power. When the Time Trapper had returned her and the others from the Pocket Universe several months ago, he’d dropped them off near the Tower of Power, telling her that if she ever needed him that there was gateway there and he’d sense her. She was hoping that was true.
Arriving at the Tower of Power, she scanned the area with her super-vision, but didn’t locate anything that looked particularly like a magical gateway. There was a hidden entrance that led into the elaborate sewer systems under Century City, but it was unlikely they were connected to the Time Trapper.
“Time Trapper. If you can hear me…” Power Girl mumbled beneath her breath. A subtle chill went through her, having to call upon the Time Trapper wasn’t something she particularly cared to do. After several minutes of nothing but the wind blowing above the Tower of Power, the sound of airplanes at Century City International Airport in the distance, and the static and hum of voices and city noises behind, she turned to return to the city. “Stupid idea.”
When she turned she found a doorway glimmering in the air before her.
“Awesome. Just awesome.” Power Girl groaned. “I feel like I’m going into the Lion’s Den.”
Flying through the doorway, she found herself in the Time Trapper’s lair.
“You called?” The Time Trapper asked. As always his face was dark beneath his purple hood. If he was even a he. His voice was distorted enough he could have been a woman.
“Yeah. We have problems on Earth.” Power Girl said, looking around to see if the Time Trapper’s blonde companion was here. She hadn’t known who the woman was before, but now that she did… She had a thing or two she wanted to ask her. *
*See upcoming issues of Power Girl for the identity of the Time Trapper’s friend.
“My friend is not here.” The Time Trapper said, then added, “If that’s who you were looking for. She’s aware you know who she is now. She decided to make herself scarce. Too many answers she doesn’t want to answer yet.”
“Figures.” Power Girl said, “Tell her that eventually she’ll need to stop running.”
“Oh, she knows. The nice thing about my lair is that time in fact can stand still here. I can send her back whenever she wants to go, with very little time having had passed for the outside world.”
“Anyway…” Power Girl shook her head, “Enough about her. Earth is being over-run with heroes and villains from another Universe. Are they yours?”
The Time Trapper chuckled, “Hardly. They come from the Earth that came into Existence after the Crisis on Infinite Earths.”
“I thought this was that Earth.” Power Girl scratched her head.
Power Girl got the impression that the Time Trapper was smiling beneath his hood.
“This is another Universe… created through a crisis of destiny. And, these people popping over from the Original Universe are endangering our reality.” The Time Trapper said.
“Then where do I need to go to help stop the threat.” Power Girl said.
“You are needed elsewhere.” The Time Trapper said.
“Oh no. You aren’t sending me on another adventure to another reality…” Power Girl shook her head. “Not after the last one.”
“Nothing quite so severe.” The Time Trapper said. With a wave of his hand a small blue and green marble appeared in the air in front of Power Girl.
“The girl… Atlee…” The Time Trapper drummed his fingers together.
“You know, all that’s missing is for you to say ‘Excellent’ in a very sinister manner.” Power Girl said, watching the Time Trapper.
“Your sense of humor… a very strong defense mechanism.” The Time Trapper said, “Very useful for you. Take the marble and get out of here. Give it to the girl Atlee.”
“Why?” Power Girl asked.
“Unfortunately for her, she’s not going to be going home.” The Time Trapper said. “This is her home now. That will help her acclimate. Otherwise her powers will continue to die.”
“Why would you help her that way? What’s in it for you?” Power Girl said, “You only do things if they benefit you.”
The Time Trapper turned toward Power Girl, his gaze angry as it focused on her.
“I do not answer to you.” The Time Trapper snapped, “My interests are served by the girl being at home here. With her powers intact.”
Power Girl snapped the marble from the air.
“One of these days, we’re going to fight.” Power Girl said, “And, you aren’t going to do as well as you think you are.”
The Time Trapper waved his hands, “Be gone.”
Power Girl disappeared from his liar.
The blonde woman with her sparkling violet eyes entered the room.
“You shouldn’t push her.” The woman said.
“You shouldn’t push me.” The Time Trapper replied.
“You should have been honest with her.” The woman said, “You should have told her, that Atlee is going to be important to her survival when Adramelek the Terrible comes for her…”
“I should have told her no such thing.” The Time Trapper said, “My bargain with her mother was that I would do everything in my power to keep her alive. I am under no obligation to explain myself.”
“You’d have far more allies if you spent less time trying to be mysterious and sinister.” The woman said, pushing several locks of blonde hair from her eyes. “It’s the mystery that keeps me alive.” The Time Trapper replied.
The woman shook her head, leaving the room again, leaving the Time Trapper alone. His eyes gazed into the giant crystal ball in the center of the room, where he watched the battle waging on Earth to save all of reality. In the volumes that lined the shelves of his library, this particular Crisis would be labeled under “Dangerous Toys.”
“Was he any help?” Skyman asked.
“He spoke in riddles.” Power Girl shrugged, “But, he did tell me that these pop-overs aren’t from any Pocket Universe.”
“Did he say how we could get home?” Atlee asked.
Power Girl looked over at her. The girl’s full round face was troubled and her deep violet colored eyes were filling with tears. She came across as so wholesome and honest. That was a rare thing in any Universe. Power Girl had a feeling that they were lucky this girl was stuck her. She just hoped Atlee—who’d called herself Terra, felt the same.
“He didn’t.” Power Girl said, choosing to skip that the Time Trapper had told her there was no way for them to get back to their world. The Time Trapper could be wrong. There was no reason to upset either Atlee or Power Boy until they knew for sure. “He gave me this though.”
Power Girl opened her fist to reveal the small blue and green marble.
“It’s beautiful.” Atlee said, her eyes widening.
“The Time Trapper said it would be helpful for you.” Power Girl said, “Something about stabilizing your powers. I know how it can be to have unpredictable powers.”
Atlee reached for the small blue and green marble. When her finger tips brushed it, there was an explosion of light.
It lasted less than a second. In that moment a millions images and memories unfurled and embedded themselves. Beneath the surface of the Earth, far down where once had been nothing an entire city appeared, populated with people that Atlee knew as friends and family. And while the world at large did not know of the hidden city of Strata’s existence, they did know of the mysterious champion—the girl who was named Atlee, who had appeared a few months before to help Power Girl fight crime in Century City. She was a beacon of hope.
In her mind, Atlee’s past was tweaked and rewritten, conforming to the new reality the Time Trapper’s small glittering marble had imparted.
When the bright flash faded, things were considerably different in every one’s head.
“So, the Time Trapper didn’t have any idea how to get Power Boy back to his own Earth?” Atlee asked.
“No.” Power Girl said, blinking. Something felt slightly off, although she didn’t know what it was. “Just that something big is going down, that shifted Power Boy into our Universe.”
Power Boy blinked, “You look just like the Terra of my world.”
Atlee smiled, “There is already a Terra here. She’s a Titan. I just go by Atlee. A champion of the hidden city of Strata, sent to the surface to foster good-will and protect our secret existence.”
“You might not want to broadcast the existence of your city if it’s supposed to be secret.” Power Boy said.
“Don’t be a jerk.” Power Girl said.
“I’m not being a jerk.” Power Boy shrugged.
“OK. We need to see if there is some way to get Power Boy here home. The Time Trapper said he’s stuck here, but I don’t know how much I trust the Time Trapper.” Power Girl said. “According to Blue Jay there is something major going down in Metropolis.”
“You think we should head that way?” Skyman asked. “Maybe we can get Power Boy back to his world. And help stop whatever it is that’s dragging all these people over.”
“Sounds like a plan.” Power Girl nodded, “You guys in?”
“I’m game.” Power Boy said, “I want to try to get back to my life. It’s not the best life, but it’s not all that awful.”
“Let’s go and stomp some bad guys!” Atlee exclaimed.
“Um… you seriously need to work on your banter.” Power Boy commented.
“Her banter is coming along nicely.” Power Girl said, “It takes a while to develop decent banter. You would realize that, but you probably spend most of your time puffing your chest out.”
“Rude.” Power Boy said.
“Something feels slightly… off-kilter.” Skyman said suddenly, tilting his head to the side. “Do you feel it? Something is slightly… off.”
“I know.” Power Girl nodded. “It feels like some sort of dream or haze or something like that.”
“I don’t know what you guys are talking about.” Atlee said cheerfully, “I feel fine. In fact I feel great.”
Power Girl smiled at her young friend and protégé. She was lucky to have Atlee in her life these past few months. She did not know what she had done without her.
NEXT ISSUE: The big FDC cross-over “Dangerous Toys” continues! Plus check out the “Dangerous Toys” Cross-Over “Team Titans Annual 0” where the search for Molecule in the Original Universe continues, plus the rest of the Terror Titans and a bunch of B-List Titans cross over where they meet Duela Dent and Misfit. And don’t forget to follow Power Girl, Power Boy, and Atlee in the ongoing “Power Girl” title.