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To Everything, There Is A Season (Wonder Twins fan-fiction)

Discussion in 'The Story Board' started by hobbyfan, Jun 14, 2013.

  1. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Preamble:

    When we last left Zan & Jayna, they'd left Gotham City & Metropolis for Florida to join their guardian, Prof. Carter Nichols, in retirement. It's been a year, but now Jayna has a yearning to return to Metropolis and her fiance, Daily Planet reporter-photographer Jimmy Olsen. Separation anxiety is one thing, but there's something else that prompts this turn of events, as you'll soon see.

    Disclaimer: All characters, other than incidentals created for this story, are copyright DC Comics/Warner Bros./Hanna-Barbera.

    Setting: June 1986.

    Chapter 1:

    Ernie & Alice Winslow had retired from the Metropolis School District in early June, and now, they were being feted again, this time by the residents of the Sunset Hills Apartments, which the Winslows had called home for 11 years.

    Ernie had been a custodian in the MSD for 40 years, the last 20 spent at Metropolis High. Alice worked in the school cafeteria at MHS for 31 years, and met Ernie, her 2nd husband, when he came to MHS in 1966. The Sunset Hills staff rented the Italian Community Center for the party, since their community room was too small, and the Winslows were so beloved in the city. The Winslows' three grown sons---Ernie, Jr., Elvin, and Emmett----hosted the party, and were facilitating their parents' move to Miami.

    The Daily Planet was well represented, as Perry White, Jimmy Olsen, & Lois Lane attended. All three were MHS alumni, and Perry, in fact, had been a classmate of Ernie's at MHS. Lois acted like Jimmy was her date, and not a co-worker on this night, but if Jimmy knew something was wrong, he didn't let on. He went about his business, conducting interviews and taking pictures, gathering notes for a feature piece that would appear in the Sunday Planet.

    The party broke up at 9, as people were already leaving well before then. Perry & Jimmy walked out to the parking lot, but there was no sign of Lois. Perry assumed she was still busy interviewing the Winslows.

    "She should be along shortly.", he said. "She has her own car, so she'll be fine."

    When Lois didn't emerge 10 minutes later, Perry & Jimmy left and headed back to the office. Once there, Perry hustled to his private office. Lois was already there, but things weren't what they seemed.

    "Did I miss anything, chief?", Lois asked.

    "Only the Winslows' retirement party.", Perry replied. "Jimmy doesn't know this, I think, but there was a more than capable substitute on hand to cover for you."

    "Oh? That means you did get in touch with her."

    "Yes. She stayed behind, and she'll catch up to Jimmy her own way later on. I'd say he doesn't suspect a thing, but then...."

    Jimmy filed his story, then left the office. No sooner than he'd pulled out of the Planet parking lot, than his police band radio blared a report of a shooting at Sunset Hills. He reached for his car phone and let Perry know what happened, and that he'd follow the story.

    "Keep me posted, Jimmy.", White said.

    Minutes later, Jimmy was at Sunset Hills, where Inspector Bill Henderson and his major crimes unit was already on the scene.

    "What happened here, Bill?", Jimmy asked.

    "Prowler ambushed the Winslows as soon as they got back from their retirement party.", Henderson replied as he admitted the reporter. Jimmy started taking pictures, and noticed that the Winslows had each been shot in the head and the heart. They wouldn't be going to Miami after all.

    "Have their sons been contacted?"

    "EJ, the oldest, is on his way over."

    "Inspector! The prowler's still here!", Officer Mike Clancy shouted, seeing a black-garbed figure on the window ledge. The Winslows were on the 2nd floor. The intruder moved quickly to avoid being seen, but Jimmy knew right away Clancy made a mistake.

    "I'll see if I can flag him down.", he told Henderson as he left.

    Jimmy reached the alley, and found two intruders grappling on the ground. One was clearly female----The Night Phantom had returned to action. The other had to be the killer, and he pushed Phantom aside to get into a standing position. He pulled out a knife and aimed it at his masked adversary. Jimmy got his attention and took a picture. The blinding flash of Jimmy's camera stunned the killer long enough for the Phantom to trip him up and send him sprawling back to the ground. He got up, but Jimmy put him back down with a right cross, knocking him out. By the time Henderson came down, the Phantom was gone.

    "Here's your prowler.", Jimmy said as he wrapped up the intruder, identified as Silas Harmon, a drifter who'd admitted he killed the Winslows because Ernie "owed a debt that lasted a lifetime".

    "I warned him that if he didn't pay up, he wasn't going to make it to Miami.", Harmon boasted, "But he kept saying he didn't owe me anything. At least I'm a man of my word."

    "And your word could put you in the gas chamber.", Henderson snapped as Harmon was led away for booking. Jimmy went to the pay phone and filed the story with Perry.

    Soon, Jimmy finally returned home, exhausted. Phantom entered through an open window in the kitchen, which caught Jimmy's attention. An accidental clattering of pots & pans brought him to the kitchen, where the Phantom, sheepishly, was cleaning up the mess she made.

    "Welcome home, honey.", Jimmy said, knowing Jayna was under the mask.

    "Sorry about the mess, Jim.", she replied, thankful her mask prevented Jimmy from seeing she was blushing. "I tried to be quiet about this, but..."

    "But you must've tripped over the window sill.", Jimmy said. "You're lucky you didn't break either of your legs."

    "I suppose. You'll forgive me if I take a raincheck on making out my first night back."

    "Forgive you? I knew you were impersonating Lois at the party. Your perfume gave you away, and when Perry said you had stayed behind, I knew why."

    "Guilty as charged, darling.", Jayna replied. "I'm still wearing Lois' form for now. Zan's waiting at the cottage."

    "I'll get you there soon enough, hon'."

    Lois had been working on another story, and hoped she'd be free to go to the party, but when she realized she couldn't, Perry had gotten in touch with Jayna, asking her to fly in a day early to surprise Jimmy. A short while later, the twins and Jimmy reunited with Zan's fiancee, Mary Lou Turner, and her roommate, Jessie Franklin. Zan finally got around to the other reason why they came home.

    "There was no need for us to remain in Hallandale.", he said, "Not after the professor died."
    ================================================================
    So what happened to Professor Nichols? We'll find out in chapter 2.
     
  2. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Chapter 2:

    Carter Nichols didn't have any children of his own, and so when Bruce Wayne left Zan & Jayna in his care a few years ago, they became the son & daughter he never had, and he was the father figure they needed, since they were orphaned at such an early age. However, Nichols did have three nephews & a niece, who gathered at his home in Hallandale to work out the details of the estate. Nichols' last will & testament would be read in three days, as it was sealed by court order to ensure that there would be no sudden "family" appearing to lay claim to the estate.

    Patrick & Philip Nichols, two of the nephews, were twin brothers who owned a law firm in Chicago. Cousin Valerie was a registered nurse who'd moved in to live with her Uncle Carter after he'd suffered a heart attack six months ago, and struck up a friendship with the Twins. Cousin Anthony is a stockbroker from New York. Of the four, Phil is the only one with his own family, leaving his wife and two sons in Chicago to attend to this most important family matter.

    "Three more days?", Valerie asked. "It seems like an eternity since Uncle Carter died."

    "I'm afraid so, cuz.", Phil replied. "You and the twins did all you could for him, but it seems like it was his time."

    "He'd suffered four heart attacks total in the space of a year.", Valerie said. "The first one was what led to his retiring and moving here. Three more heart attacks, plus a stroke, and here we are. I wish we could just get on with it."

    "I agree.", Anthony said. "However, we have to wait for Zan & Jayna to return, since they're in on this, too. Even though they've both said they don't think they would get much out of this, I think Uncle Carter would reward them for providing him with the family he always wanted."

    Meanwhile, a suspicious looking figure watched from across the street.........

    In Metropolis, Zan & Jayna relayed everything to Jimmy, Jessie, & Mary Lou.

    "Oh, that's so terrible.", Jessie said. "At least he's in a better place where he isn't suffering."

    "So true.", Jimmy replied. "Now, the will is sealed until...."

    "Monday.", Jayna said. "We leave for Hallandale tomorrow."

    "Not so fast, my love.", Jimmy replied. "I have to interview Ernie Winslow, Jr. at the Planet, then we can go."

    "But the sooner we get there, the better chance we can find out more about the Professor's death.", Zan contested. "I don't think that last heart attack came out of the blue like everyone said it did."

    "You've got us to keep you company, handsome.", Mary Lou cooed. "We can take separate flights."

    "No, we'll all go together.", Jimmy countered. "We'll leave around noon."

    The next day, as Jimmy prepared to leave the Planet office, he found an envelope he'd kept in his desk, just in case Jayna had come home. He placed it in his jacket pocket, then left. A short time later, at the airport, he handed his fiancee the envelope, which had Joanna Fleming's name on it, in care of Jimmy & the Planet. Jayna read the letter, and was crushed.

    "What's wrong, sis?", Zan asked. Jayna simply handed him the letter.

    "You're now just finding out the same thing we did earlier this week.", Mary Lou said. "Our class president and resident bigot, Kyle Westbrook, doesn't want you two showing up at the reunion and is thinking up excuses as he goes."

    "So, why not have our own party?", Jessie suggested. "We can get our friends to boycott Westbrook and his racist viewpoints."

    "No, the picture is just starting to come into focus, Jess.", Jayna replied. "Remember, Eugene Cobbard was hired a year ago to kill us, and killed Lew to take his place for a time, as a means of getting to us. Someone hired him to do the job, but since he failed, he took his own life, from what I've heard, rather than let the cops quiz him about it."

    "I can verify that, honey.", Jimmy said. "Cobbard was fished out of the lake at Robinson Park a month after the explosion. Witnesses say he just walked in and drowned himself."

    "Which put us back at square one. However, Westbrook has been harboring a grudge ever since we came to GCHS.", Zan said. "He thought his money could give him free reign to hit on every girl on campus, teachers included. I'm willing to bet he may have fudged a few numbers along the way to be class president, since there's no official title for class scammer."

    "And he was named class president despite the fact he actually paid off a few people to do his exams for him in sophomore year.", Mary Lou added. "He knows who he can lean on. Laziest guy I've ever met."

    A few hours later, the plane touched down in Miami, and Jimmy rented a car to take the five to Hallandale. Introductions were made upon arriving, and Anthony had a look that suggested an interest in Jessie, to ease his broken heart. However, Jessie rebuffed him right away.

    "I'm sorry, but right now, I'm in between relationships.", she said.

    Elsewhere, three suspicious characters gathered at a community park across the road from the Nichols house.

    "They're all present and accounted for.", one man said. "Keeping them busy between now & Monday won't be that easy."

    "Oh, they'll be busy.", a woman said, pulling back her hood to reveal the cowled visage of Miss Crimson, aka Miranda Leslie. "I will personally see to that."

    "And how do you intend to accomplish that?", Kyle Westbrook asked. "That reporter is the key to this whole thing."

    "Don't worry, moneybags.", Miranda replied. "I've got him covered."
    ===================================================================================
    So Westbrook hired Miranda and one other. Who that other man is will have to wait until chapter 3.
     
  3. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Chapter 3:

    Kyle started for the Nichols' house, but Miranda abruptly pulled him back.

    "What are you doing?", he asked.

    "See those cameras? There's two on every end of the building. We can't make a move now. We need to catch at least two of them out in the open."

    "I see what you mean. Better to take a chance tomorrow than run the risk of ruining this mission tonight."

    However, the hooded man had started for the house, taking advantage of the others not paying attention to him until it was too late. He was already across the road by the time Kyle even noticed.

    "Blast it! What is he doing?", he thundered.

    "I knew this was a bad idea.", Miranda said. "He's obsessed with that alien girl."

    "We're outta here, then."

    Cameron Elliott was wearing a black lycra mask to hide his face because he was now a federal fugitive, wanted in 4 states for rape, sodomy, sexual assault, robbery, and even attempted murder since breaking out of Stryker's Island last year. He found a spot in between the cameras where he could climb up the wall. Problem was, the occupants in the house were already taking action, including the object of his obsession.

    "The police have been called.", Phil said as he replaced the phone. "At least those other two had the good sense to retreat."

    "For now.", Jayna replied. "They'll be looking to make a move sometime tomorrow."

    Zan & Jimmy then took Jayna aside to give her some information they'd just acquired.

    "It's definitely Elliott.", Jimmy said. "Nate Foster not only gained parole last year, but married his parole officer just two months ago. He fell in love at first sight. Elliott's been on the run since he busted out of Stryker's, and somehow, Westbrook got in touch with him."

    "Did you check up on Westbrook?", Jayna asked.

    "Yes, and I don't think the cousins will like the answer."

    The sound of Elliott's grappling hook hitting the roof prompted the Twins into action.

    Cameron had made his way onto the roof, and was trying to pick the lock on the door leading to the attic. He never saw a python slither up from the 2nd floor window and coil around him until it was too late to do anything. Next instant, Zan, Jimmy, & Valerie came up through the attic, and Zan unmasked Elliott.

    "Well, looky here.", he quipped. "A prune, stewed before its time."
    =============================================================
    Elliott was taken into custody. Meanwhile, Jimmy spilled the beans on Westbrook, although it seemed as though the cousins knew who he was, anyway.

    "The black sheep of the family.", Anthony said soberly. "I'd never believe he'd stoop this low."

    "There's a reason for that, Tony.", Valerie replied. "He & his mom were disowned from the family after his father died 7 years ago. Aunt Edna was a disgrace to the family, resorting to selling herself to make ends meet when her day job couldn't pay the bills. Uncle Carter couldn't forgive Aunt Edna fast enough to suit."

    "So this little plot is his way of getting back at us.", Patrick put in. "How do we put the clamps on him?"

    "We don't.", Zan said. "We locate him, and invite him to the courthouse for Monday. As the 5th Nichols cousin, he might still have something coming his way, because the professor might've, as Val implied, found it in his heart to forgive his sister after all."

    "He's right.", Phil said. "We won't know until Monday, but as long as he has that little tramp with him......"

    "Don't worry about Miranda.", Mary Lou promised. "We'll take care of her."

    The next day, Kyle & Miranda had breakfast at a suburban Miami diner, and Miranda had spotted the headline reporting Cameron's arrest.

    "It's down to the two of us.", she said. "I knew this was a bad idea."

    "But look what it says.", Kyle replied. "My cousins have put out an olive branch, inviting me to sit in with them tomorrow. They think Uncle Carter may have forgiven my mom all along."

    "10 to 1 odds the Wonder Twins are behind this.", Miranda said. "They see good in a lot of bad people that few others do. Hate to admit it, but your uncle instilled that in them."
    ==============================================================
    That same night, Miranda & Kyle arrived at the house, and were admitted by Anthony & Valerie. Just the same, they had to turn in their guns as a show of respect.

    "I still can't believe this.", Kyle said. "After all I've done, you guys are willing to forgive?"

    "Forgive, yes, but forget? Not sure about that.", Val replied. "You two just have to behave tomorrow."

    "Remains to be seen.", Miranda smirked as she offered a handshake. However, she gave away she had a joy buzzer in her hand, designed to render Valerie unconscious. Valerie instead gripped her wrist, and turned her around into a hammerlock. Anthony, then, removed the buzzer.

    "Let's go, you two.", he said.

    Seconds later, Miranda & Kyle were led into the study.

    "We knew you couldn't be trusted, even with a charitable offer to make amends on the table.", Phil said.

    "Besides, your so-called pal, Elliott, spilled the beans to the cops.", Valerie added. "He complained that you left him to rot in jail without bail."

    "Because he was a fool, just like the rest of you.", Westbrook snapped. "So you got me. That doesn't mean you're holding me for the police!"

    Kyle turned toward the door, but Jimmy & Zan were waiting for him.

    "What's wrong with you? The party's just getting started!", Zan cracked as he belted Westbrook with a right hook.

    Miranda surrendered to police soon after, and said that Westbrook got in touch with her after she'd been released from prison. She knew all along this was destined to fail. She also knew that Kyle had played her for a fool, claiming he was in love with her. They'd slept together the night before, but it was all part of Kyle's master plan to embarrass the Twins and the Nichols family.

    "He resented all of you for turning against him after his father died, when he needed you the most.", she said, "But, I was the one who convinced him to come here tonight, thinking that this might change his whole attitude."

    Miranda was booked on simple criminal trespass and attempted assault charges. Westbrook on assault & harassment.

    The next day at the courthouse, the will was unsealed, and, as it turned out, Kyle wasn't getting anything after all. His criminal record had seen to that. The Twins, on the other hand, were given title & ownership of the newly remodeled & rebuilt boarding house in Gotham City, along with $100,000 each to start their own individual businesses as they saw fit. The rest of the estate would be divided equally among Phil, Patrick, Anthony, & Valerie.
    ==============================================================================
    Later that same night, the gang returned to Metropolis, so Jessie & Mary Lou could pack. Jessie would be swapping residences with Jimmy, so that Jimmy & Jayna would have their suburban love nest. Mary & Zan would return to Gotham and live in the former boarding house. But there was one piece of business left.

    Two weeks later, a form letter was sent to the Gotham City High Class of 1981, announcing that Kyle was removed as Class President after "certain things came to light regarding his grades & behavior", and that he wouldn't be at the reunion on September 27. Also, after it had "come to light" that John & Joanna Fleming had entered the Federal Witness Protection Program a year ago after faking their deaths, they would make their return at the reunion.

    "Are you sure about this, honey?", Jimmy asked as Jayna read the letter aloud.

    "As sure as anything, Jim.", she replied, sitting down on her fiance's lap to make out with him. "It seems only fair."
    ==================================================================================
    Ah, but not everything is as it seems, as we'll find out in chapter 4.
     
  4. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Interlude:

    Cam Elliott was extradited, not to Gotham City, but to Kansas City. Two of his rape victims were the daughters of a prominent Missouri congressman, and he'd serve his sentence in a federal prison. Kyle Westbrook, meanwhile, was sent to state prison in Florida. Miranda Leslie turned state's evidence against him, realizing that the Nichols family's show of compassion was a sign that she should change her ways. Miranda is serving a 6-month sentence, also in Florida, but far away from Kyle, who had used her.

    Meanwhile, it turns out that Silas Harmon, who'd murdered Ernie & Alice Winslow, was hired by someone. His claim that Ernie owed him a debt was a lie. As we pick up the story, Jimmy is looking for the real motive........

    Chapter 4:

    Silas Harmon had been released on bail and was holed up at a seedy hotel in Metropolis' Suicide Slum section. His houseguest, though, wasn't thrilled.

    "You caved in awfully quick for someone who wasn't afraid to go to the gas chamber.", Corwin Redmond said. He & Harmon worked for a small-time gangster, Morris Randazzo, who was looking to make an inroad in Metropolis' underworld. "Everyone knew you were lying about Winslow's debt, because he always paid on time."

    "The Boss said Winslow welched on a payment, so I went after him.", Harmon replied.

    "That was two weeks ago.", Redmond replied. "By the time you got here, the check arrived in the mail, and was deposited. The account was settled. Unfortunately, the Boss had no way of contacting you, and he was really sore when he found out that masked dame and the reporter busted you."

    "So we go after Olsen and that faceless girlfriend of his. I owe him one.", Harmon snapped, still feeling his jaw from where Jimmy clocked him.

    Meanwhile, Jayna & Jimmy were enjoying a romantic vacation in Hawaii, with nothing but sunshine, surf, and each other. They used the time to plan their long-delayed wedding, now set for New Year's Eve, and to shop for a dress for Jayna to wear, as Joanna, for the class reunion. Nothing seemed to go wrong. That is, until they finally came home........

    Unaware that Jimmy had relocated while he was in jail, Harmon made his way to the apartment building that the reporter had called home for several years. Jessie, seeing the security camera, acted quickly. Realizing that she couldn't risk confronting the intruder as Night Phantom, Jessie decided to secure the apartment by locking her doors & windows. Just before she locked the bedroom window, Jayna, wearing her Phantom outfit, climbed in off the fire escape, with Jimmy behind her.

    "Hated to sneak back into my old digs, but when we got word Harmon was coming here looking for me,", Jimmy said, "I thought we'd stop here first."

    "Do you need me to change?", Jessie asked.

    "No.", Jayna replied. "You & Jim will need to stay out of sight, though."

    The words had barely been spoken when three bullets forced the door open. Harmon entered, reloading his gun as he went.

    "Olsen! Come out here with your hands up!", he bellowed. As he walked past the bedroom, Jayna tossed a bolo, which caught Harmon at the ankles and put him down. Jimmy & Jessie emerged from hiding.

    "Guys like you are too predictable, Harmon!", Jimmy cracked.

    "So are you, Olsen. You won't be leaving here alive tonight!", Harmon sneered.

    Just then, a bundle of dynamite sticks were thrown through the open door. Thinking quickly, Jessie put out the fuses with a bucket of water. Minutes later, Harmon was taken into custody. Once the lovebirds made it home, though, they found Redmond & Randazzo waiting for them at the cottage.

    "Welcome to your last night on earth.", Randazzo hissed as he pointed a pair of .44 revolvers at the couple.

    "Now what do we do, honey?", Jayna whispered.

    "Have no fear, my love. Help is on its way.", Jimmy promised.
    ==============================================================
    In chapter 5, we'll see if that help gets there in time.
     
  5. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Chapter 5:

    Jessie, now dressed as Night Phantom, had trailed behind, just in case her friends ran into trouble. As she approached the cottage, she caught sight of a familiar red & blue-garbed from streak past her at top speed.

    "Ohmigosh!", she thought to herself. "I forgot Jimmy has a direct line to Superman!"

    At that moment, Randazzo had Jayna & Jimmy tied up, back-to-back. What he didn't realize was that he had accidentally activated Jimmy's ultrasonic signal watch. Just before he could put a gag over Jayna's mouth, the Man of Steel flew through the open door, and sent the gunsel crashing into the wall. Quickly wriggling her arms free, Jayna went after Redmond before he could draw his gun. He shoved her aside, but ran right into a right hook from Jimmy. Just then, Jessie finally reached the driveway, only to pull back to a side road. It was better the goons didn't see Night Phantom suddenly appear.

    "Thanks, Superman.", Jimmy said.

    "You can actually thank Randazzo for turning your watch on.", Superman quipped. "I noticed Night Phantom was following, probably at your request, but I thought she might need some backup."

    "You actually beat her here, so she must've backed off out of deference."

    Superman soon left with the goons. Minutes later, Jessie, who had time to change, finally arrived. Jayna briefed her on what had happened.

    "I'm glad you guys are ok.", Jessie said, relieved. "I would've only gotten in the way."

    "It's not so bad, Jess.", Jimmy replied, rubbing her shoulder. "You did fine."

    Jimmy took Jessie home, since she had borrowed the black Corvette. Later, after coming home, Jimmy found Jayna on the sofa, sleeping. He went into her room and brought a blanket out to let her rest for the night.
    ====================================================
    In Gotham City, Mary Lou was making plans for a trip----to a funeral.

    "What's with the black dress, honey?", Zan asked.

    "Remember my uncle, the preacher? I just found out he passed away last night from a heart attack.", Mary Lou replied. "He was going to come up here to marry us in December, but now I guess we'll have to look for a local minister."

    "I was watching 'I Dream of Jeannie' earlier, and on that show, Jeannie had to undergo a blood test before she got married."

    "Only because her master-later husband was in the military. For us, it's different. I eloped a year ago, remember? Not fun, not cheap, either."

    "I get what you're saying. You don't want to try eloping again so soon. I was thinking, though, that maybe we'd surprise everyone at the reunion."

    "And leave your sister out of it? Nothing doing."

    "Ok, it was just a thought."

    "I could use some company going to Georgia, but Mom said this is strictly family, and you will have to stay here with the baby."

    "Fair enough."

    The next morning, assuming his guise as John Fleming once more, Zan took baby John Christian out for a stroll, and ran into Jodi & Carl Bergstrom, who'd just returned to Gotham themselves after 5 years in Charlotte. Jodi was already aware of what Mary Lou had gone through, with the now-annulled elopement with Eugene Cobbard that resulted in the baby.

    "So where's Mary?", Carl asked.

    "She just left for Atlanta an hour ago, and won't be back until Sunday.", John replied. "Her uncle passed away last night."

    "And she left you here, alone?", Jodi asked.

    "No choice. Strictly family issue."
    ====================================================
    Even though Mary Lou may be in mourning, she may need her fiance's help very soon, as we'll see in chapter 6.
     
  6. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Chapter 6:

    Elizabeth Turner, the widow of Rev. John Quincy Turner, greeted her brother, Paul, and his family when they arrived at the airport in Atlanta, but she seemed to shun her niece, Mary Lou, at first.

    "She doesn't have her fiance here with her.", Paul said. "We asked her to leave him in Gotham."

    "I can see. And her child?", Elizabeth asked.

    "The same. I knew there would be an issue with the baby."

    "And you've said her fiance isn't the father?"

    "That's correct. Someone masqueraded as a friend of theirs, knocked her up, then tried to kill her to claim the baby for himself. The guy later took his own life rather than face trial."

    "Has the baby been baptized?"

    "Just two months ago."

    "Well, I wouldn't have a problem with the child being here, then."

    Later that night, Mary Lou checked in on John in Gotham City, and had a surprise for him.

    "Aunt Elizabeth's interested in meeting you and the baby. How soon can you be here in Atlanta?", she said.

    "I can be on a plane headed for Atlanta in the morning, honey.", John replied. "Do you need anything else?"

    "No, but maybe if you can get your sister to leave Jimmy for a couple of days, that would help. I'll explain when you get here."

    "Fair enough, babe."
    =========================================================
    "She's not here right at the moment.", Jimmy said when John called a few minutes later. "I'd say she's doing some hunting."

    "Oh, a Night Phantom case, eh?", John asked.

    "Yep. Seems an old friend has arrived in Metropolis."
    ===================================================
    That old friend was Lt. David Ramirez, whom Joanna met in Los Angeles, and was now working out of Chicago. He'd been brought in by Inspector Henderson on a case, but upon learning the Phantom, whom he'd fallen for, was in town, arranged a date with her in Shuster Park.

    "I honestly didn't think I'd see you again.", he said. "It's been, how long?"

    "Four years, by my count.", Phantom replied. But before she could continue, the masked maiden heard the sounds of a commotion on the other side of the park.

    "Stay right there. I'll be right back.", she promised.

    Seconds later, the Phantom happened across a pair of thugs mugging a college student, Anne Carlson. Striking quickly, she disarmed and overpowered the thugs, leaving them bound for the police to find. By the time she returned to the other end of the park, Ramirez was gone, leaving a note.

    "Something has come up, my dark darling. Maybe another day.", he wrote.

    Upon returning home, Joanna got the message from Jimmy, and promptly began to pack for a trip.

    "Do you need me to go with you?", Jimmy asked. "I can get some vacation time."

    "No, babe.", Joanna replied, finally unmasking. "One of us has to stay here and work on wedding plans?"

    "Oh, right."
    ===================================================
    The next day, the twins arrived in Atlanta, and Mary Lou met them at the airport.

    "You didn't happen to bring anything for battle, did you?", she asked.

    "No.", Joanna replied. "For us, this is strictly a vacation trip. Besides, someone had to nurse the baby on the flight."

    The twins were then introduced to the rest of the Turner family. Spotting Joanna's engagement ring, Elizabeth inquired about Jimmy.

    "My fiance is very busy.", Joanna explained. "We have a wedding of our own to plan, and he's working on that while I'm here."

    "Hmm, I see.", Elizabeth replied.

    Meanwhile, John Quincy, Jr., Elizabeth's son, took umbrage with Mary Lou over her pending wedding.

    "Nothing good will come of this union, cousin, not as long as you remain tethered to this heathen.", he said.

    "How dare you!", Mary snapped. She then turned on her heels and walked away as her cousin followed, only to have John block his path.

    "You got something to say about me?", he asked angrily. "Say it to my face!"

    Joanna & Mary Lou got the two sides apart before there were fisticuffs. John was still angry when he returned to the hotel.

    "This was what you called us down here for?", he snapped.

    "Take it easy, babe.", Mary said, calming him down. "He doesn't know you go to church. Doesn't know you at all."

    "He certainly seems a little too hostile.", Joanna replied. "Like, maybe he's got something to hide."

    Meanwhile, John Quincy met with a friend after the wake.

    "My cousin can be so predictable.", he said. "She sent for her boyfriend."

    "Did he bring his sister along, as well as the child?", the friend asked.

    "Yes. His sister is quite fetching herself, but she is engaged to someone."

    "That won't matter. The child will soon be ours, and the family will be sacrificed for the greater good."
    ========================================================
    So who is John Quincy Turner talking to, and why is he interested in little John Christian? Seems that maybe Eugene Cobbard wasn't lying after all about a cult and sacrifices. It all ends in our next chapter.
     
    #6 hobbyfan, Jul 16, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 5, 2013
  7. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Chapter 7:

    Later that night, Joanna had settled down for the evening when she heard some noise coming from outside the hotel. The sound had also attracted John & Mary Lou's attention. They raced out to a window at the end of the hall, and saw someone starting a fire.

    "Oh, no! What are they doing?", Mary cried.

    "You wanted this to be a vacation, eh, sis?", John asked. "Maybe we should've brought our battle gear after all."

    "Just my luck.", Joanna replied. She walked over and broke open the fire alarm to activate it. "Let's see if we can't corral those firebugs.", she said.

    "How?", Mary Lou asked. "We left our costumes home, remember?"

    "I know, but these guys may be our ticket to finding out why they're so interested in the baby."

    Seconds later, a passing police cruiser pulled up in the alley. Seeing the fire, the officers contacted the fire department as the guests evacuated the hotel. The cult members tried to escape, but were caught by the police.

    On a hunch, the twins & Mary Lou visited Elizabeth. John Quincy wasn't home, which gave Joanna a chance to slip into his room undetected. There, she found a number of things, including the same robe the cult members were wearing, and a hand stamp for their "tattoos". She then brought the items to Elizabeth's attention.

    "Oh, dear God, I was afraid this might happen.", Elizabeth said. "That boy left the church years ago because of a fascination with the other side. It was the boys he hung out with at school that turned his head."

    "He wasn't at the hotel.", Mary said. "But may be on his way back here to create an alibi."

    "No, I think I know where he's gone.", Elizabeth replied. "He went to get the baby, then go to the church, to further blaspheme against God."

    "The baby's with us.", Joanna said. "Mary may be right, he may be coming here."
    ========================================================
    A short time later, John Quincy returned, to find the police and Elizabeth waiting for him. He tried to run, but John was waiting at the door and dropped him with a right cross.

    "Your friends talked for a while.", Lt. Paul Rivers said. "They fingered you as the point man in all of this."

    "Which makes us wonder.", Officer Patricia Barrett added, "Why would you try to destroy your own family?"

    "The end times are coming!!", John Quincy declared, "And the child will be the reason why!"
    ===============================================
    John Quincy was remanded to a local mental hospital. The cult was broken up, and the funeral went without a hitch. Mary Lou & the twins left the next night for Metropolis. Once there, Jimmy had a surprise for his fiancee.

    "You're not going to believe this, my darling, but Perry's offering you your old job right after the reunion.", he said.

    "Somehow, I could see this coming.", Joanna said as she unpacked. "But this quickly?"

    "Well, there's a reason for that, honey."

    "Oh?"

    "There was someone at the office today who claimed to be you."
    =============================================
    Now what? We'll find out in chapter 8.
     
  8. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Chapter 8:

    Joanna froze upon hearing this news. This meant only one thing.

    "Was there anything in the news regarding Kyle Westbrook?", she asked.

    "How did you know?", Jimmy responded. "He broke jail by hiding in a laundry truck three days ago."

    "Call it a hunch, but this has his fingerprints all over it, honey. He's still upset that he didn't get a share of the inheritance from the professor. Not that he deserved any of it anyway, but he's determined to ruin Zan & I any way he can."

    "Hmm, you're right. He does know who you are, which means we have to send him back to prison before the reunion. But there's that other woman to consider."

    "Do we have any pictures on her?"

    "No, not now. She's a redhead, not even close to being as gorgeous as you, baby."

    Joanna then retreated to her bedroom. Soon, she pulled out her Gotham City High yearbook, and raced through the senior class pictures until she found what she was looking for.

    "Got her!", she exclaimed. "Take a look, Jim."

    She pointed to a photo of Rachel Lee Mullins, a 5th year senior, whose short red hair was the same length as Joanna's. There was another picture of Mullins, this one with Westbrook, taken at the senior prom, or at least, that was what was implied.

    "They weren't at the prom.", Joanna continued. "Westbrook faked that picture. Had to be taken the day after the prom, when the decorations hadn't been taken down yet."

    Just then, the phone rang, and Jimmy picked it up on the first ring. It was Jessie.

    "She already knows about it, Jess.", he said, handing the phone over to Joanna.

    "It gets worse.", Jessie said. "Rachel's been all over town with some crazy story about how you supposedly took her ID. Westbrook's put her up to this for sure."

    "But how much is he paying her to lie about herself?", Joanna asked. "We have to move fast."

    The next morning, Rachel was still trying to sell her flimsy story, and was back at the Daily Planet, only to find Joanna was back at her desk.

    "You've got some nerve showing up, imposter!", Rachel screamed.

    "Look who's talking.", Joanna replied calmly. "You never were smart enough to cover your trail when we were in school. Everyone here knows me, so your act is a failure, just like at the talent show."

    Rachel tried to attack, but Joanna dodged a karate chop, and dropped Rachel with one of her own. Minutes later, in Perry White's office, Inspector Henderson had good news.

    "Turns out that escaped con from Florida put her up to it.", he said. "Offered her a ton of money and coached her while in prison."

    "Must've been by telephone, since he only got out recently.", Jimmy said. "Either that, or this was planned out before he went to Florida."

    "Either way, she won't see any of that money.", Henderson replied. "Turns out, Westbrook's cash flow was cut off when he went to prison."
    =========================================================================
    Later that same night, Westbrook waited at Shuster Park, thinking Rachel would meet him there, but he was blissfully unaware that she had been captured. Jessie, as Night Phantom, staked out the area with Jimmy.

    "Do you think he'll know the difference?", Jessie asked.

    "No, I don't think so.", Jimmy replied. "Here she comes."

    Joanna, now disguised as Rachel, approached Kyle at the bench.

    "How did it go? I thought I'd have heard from you sooner.", he said.

    "No go again. She's too well embedded at the paper. I knew I should've invested in latex makeup this time."

    "We were doing this my way.", Westbrook snapped. "I figured if that glamour gal took the identity of a common, homely classmate-to-be, and created a whole new look, no one would've been the wiser, especially after 5 years."

    "So where did we go wrong?"

    "We didn't. You did. You went straight to the Daily Planet yesterday, and again today, looking for a direct confrontation. I would've strung this out until the class reunion, then exposed that little slut in front of everyone. Her brother, too. It would've been the end for them, after they embarrassed me in Miami."

    "The way I see it, you go where you can get the most immediate attention. So the Planet didn't work. The television station would've been the same result. Blackmailing her would've only made things worse."

    "How?"

    "Because she would've tracked you down, without her brother's help, I might add, and you wouldn't even make it to the reunion."

    Kyle stood up and brandished a knife.

    "My last partner turned on me in Miami because she was overcome by my cousins' compassion and generosity. I will not have this happen again!", he snarled.

    Just then, Jessie let fly with a bolo before Westbrook could use his knife. Joanna hit him with a pair of quick palm thrusts, and it was over.

    Westbrook was sent back to state prison in Florida. Rachel admitted her part in the scheme was all about money. She was destitute, having lost her job and her apartment. She was too scared to return home to her folks, too proud. Joanna had an idea.

    "There's still time for you to turn things around.", she said at the pre-trial hearing. "Kyle's only in this for himself. He's a user, and he's not the kind of guy you want. There's plenty of fish out there."

    "But how?", Rachel asked. "And why would you help me? After what he had me try to do?"

    "Because everyone deserves a 2nd chance, a fair shake, as it were. I know someone back in Gotham that can help you get that 2nd chance."

    That someone, of course, was Joanna's "sponsor", Bruce Wayne. Joanna helped Rachel fill out her resume and set her up for an interview at Wayne Enterprises a few days later. Rachel's parents took her back in until she could find a new apartment for herself. However, she wouldn't be attending the reunion. She never graduated.

    "I flunked out of three exams and had to repeat again.", she said. "I ended up with the class of '82, so my reunion isn't until next year."

    "Plenty of time to make use of your new life.", Joanna said.
    ============================================================
    Our story will conclude with the class reunion and a not-so-startling surprise in chapter 9.
     
    #8 hobbyfan, Jul 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 5, 2013
  9. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    Interlude:

    In the weeks leading up to the class reunion, Jimmy & Joanna spent most of their downtime thinking ahead to their wedding. However, as the old saying goes, the best laid plans often go astray........

    Chapter 9:

    "I now pronounce you husband & wife.", Rev. Morris Nordley declared on September 6, three weeks before the reunion, to a beaming John & Mary Lou Fleming, who had moved their wedding date to before the reunion as a bit of a surprise.

    Joanna, who was the maid of honor, tried to hide the fact she was blushing, knowing that in 3 1/2 months, it'd be her turn to walk the aisle. During the reception, she caught the bouquet, and Jimmy claimed the garter belt. However, he fumbled attaching it to his fiancee's leg, much to the newlyweds' amusement.

    John & Mary Lou left the next day for Hawaii on their honeymoon. Joanna, resuming her other identity as Jayna, returned to the Hall of Justice. Gleek, while happy to see one of his owners back again for the first time in a year, bristled over seeing her new, ponytail-less hairdo.

    "Oh? Is this the problem?", she asked, running her hand through her hair. Gleek nodded.

    "I'm afraid he's going to have to get used to it.", Batman said. "Assuming, of course, you're staying retired."

    "For all intents & purposes, I am.", Jayna replied. "I've settled into life away from crime-fighting, anyway, but it's been too long since I held Gleek in my arms."

    Gleek chattered angrily and hopped away, back to his quarters, slamming the door on his way in.

    "What he needs is to find an Earth mate of his own.", Wonder Woman said. "I think that could give you something to do when you're not at work."

    "I guess it could.", Jayna said thoughtfully.
    ======================================================
    Three weeks later, though, things were different. Joanna had barely gotten ready for the party when Jessie arrived at the cottage, finding her best friend all alone.

    "Where's Jimmy?", she asked.

    "Washington.", came the reply. "Perry sent him to cover the Mid-East Peace Conference, and that's taking longer than expected, so he won't be home until late tonight or early tomorrow, too late for the party."

    "That means you don't have a date, then."

    "No, actually, I have a stand-by who's picking me up in about an hour. You just go on ahead to the airport, Jess, I'll catch up."
    ==================================================
    Joanna' s mystery date was Marvin White, who had to explain to his wife, Kate, that he needed to help "an old friend". Marvin had reconnected with Joanna a week earlier, after she discovered that Jimmy couldn't make it. For appearances, even though most of her friends knew she was engaged, she left the engagement ring behind at home. The two danced the night away, and Marv even treated Joanna to a post-party nightcap.

    When Joanna came home, she found Jimmy's car in the driveway, but when she came in, he had already retired for the evening. The next morning, as the couple headed to work, Jimmy was apologetic about leaving his lady in the lurch.

    "I felt badly waiting at the airport last night, waiting to come home, knowing I was missing a better time.", he said.

    "Maybe I should've gone with you.", Joanna said wistfully. "But everything's ok now, isn't it?"

    "Of course it is, honey."

    "Then all that's left is to send the invitations out for the wedding."

    Jimmy then pulled the car over to the side.

    "There isn't going to be a wedding, baby.", he said.

    "Why not? We've been planning this ever since I came back to Metropolis 3 months ago.", Joanna protested.

    "Now isn't the time. Sure, your brother just got married, and you caught the bouquet, but this requires more time."

    "Oh? Why? Why do this to me, Jimmy?"

    "Because, doll, between the two of us and our association with Superman, we've accumulated a number of enemies. If in fact anyone else has uncovered your other identities while you were away for a year, we'd never get a moment's peace, and our wedding would be disrupted by any number of guys looking for vengeance, and using us to get to Superman."

    Joanna paused. In her heart, she knew Jimmy was right. Now wasn't the time. Jimmy could see she was fighting the tears.

    "Relax, honey, it's not the end of the world. We're still together, but it will take a long time before I'm comfortable with getting married.", he said.

    "Then would you rather we tried again for a baby?", Joanna asked.

    "As long as you promise to leave the roof repairs to professionals this time.", Jimmy cracked as he kissed her.

    Fittingly, as they continued on to the Daily Planet, the radio blared the Byrds' classic, "Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything, There is a Season)". Marriage would wait, but starting a family couldn't any longer.
    =======================================
    Epilogue:

    A year later, John & Mary Lou welcomed their first child, daughter Janice Meredith, giving John Christian, now a year old, a playmate. Joanna left the Daily Planet and used her inheritance to open an exercise studio in partnership with Jessie. Despite the fact that she & Jimmy were sleeping together, she still wasn't able to bear a child. On Valentine's Day 1988, though, Jimmy & Joanna finally got married---with Joanna four months pregnant at the time of the wedding.

    We will take our leave of our star-crossed couples for now.

    The end.
     
    #9 hobbyfan, Aug 7, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 15, 2014

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