Preamble: When we last left the Wonder Twins, Jayna had gotten a divorce from reporter-husband Jimmy Olsen, nearly two years after their children were killed in an explosion masterminded by Cameron Elliott and the Think Tank. Elliott has since committed suicide. Zan lost his wife and kids in the same explosion, but life has moved on, especially with a class reunion on the way.......... Setting: November 1991, Gotham City. J & J's Aerobics Center, now owned by Jessie Franklin & Jodi Bergstrom, normally is closed on Sundays, but there was some activity on a Sunday afternoon, two weeks before Thanksgiving. Jodi, class valedectorian of Gotham High's 1981 senior class, was having a dispute with a visitor who felt it was up to her to decide when and where the reunion would take place. "You've always been fashionably late to the party, Denise.", Jodi said angrily as Denise Curran handed her a completed----and modified----mailing list. Several alumni's names had been blacked out by Denise, including John & Joanna Fleming. "Not only that, but I didn't give you any instructions to leave anyone out of the mix." "Oh, yes, you did.", Denise shot back. "Use your discretion, you said." "I meant in verifying addresses. John just relocated, and I happen to have his invitation already in the mail. Went out yesterday morning. Joanna's, too, I might add." "And you're not sharing?" "Not with you, after what you just did. I'm looking at my master list, and there are 20 names that were blacked out without a rational, responsible reason. Jessie is doing her part to make sure all the i's are dotted, the t's are crossed, and everything is cross-checked. The party is set for the night after Thanksgiving, same as last time." "Ok, so I screwed up. If it was left up to me, the Fleming twins wouldn't be coming, anyway." "Oh? Why?" "None of your business." "That's it, Denise. Once again, you're letting personal issues cloud your judgment. It's why you lost three jobs in the space of 5 years. Make it 4, because as of now, you're off the committee. Thank you and good-bye. Don't let the door hit you on the backside on the way out!" Denise, a half-Irish, half-Hispanic, stormed out the back door. Jodi locked it, then called her husband, Carl, to pick her up. ============================================== Meanwhile, Bonnie Sutton had stopped to pick up a few of the invitations from her twin brother, Ronnie, who worked at the post office. When Ronnie didn't answer the door, Bonnie let herself in with a pass key. She entered, searching for Ronnie, and found him, or what was left of him, in the living room. Ronnie had his throat slashed, and there were marks all over his face and chest, as if he'd been attacked by a wild animal of some kind. Frantic, Bonnie called the police. She noticed that the invitations she came to pick up were gone. Detective Harvey Bullock arrived on the scene 15 minutes later. After calming Bonnie down, he took a statement from her, and assured her the police would find her brother's killer. Later that night, Bonnie was on the phone again, this time with Jessie, whose eyes widened with horror over Ronnie's death. Luckily for her, John was there to keep her company. She quickly briefed him on what had happened. "And Bonnie says the invitations were stolen?", he asked. "Yes! That's the only thing. Seems Ronnie was attacked in the middle of the night, but there was no one else in the building who'd have heard him.", Jessie replied. "Sounds like we have a were-creature of some kind in town. Just what, we'd have to find out." "Include me out. I've seen too many of those horror movies on TV lately." "Jess, I'm not going to lose you so soon after losing Mary. If I'm going to track the killer, you're coming along. My sister would tell you the same thing." "And where is Joanna, anyway?" At that moment, Joanna was returning home from a date with her new beau, Brad Curtis, a 20 year old college student she'd been tutoring. They'd been together just a few days, but Joanna was hesitant about making a commitment so soon after getting divorced. She was sharing an apartment on the East End with Renee Summers, another classmate who'd returned to Gotham and was working for the Gazette. "Ren? You home yet?", Joanna called as she hung up her coat and removed her shoes. There was no answer. There was, however, running water coming from the shower. Joanna walked over to the bathroom, and found the curtain stained.........with blood. Thinking quickly, she wrapped her hand in a towel and pulled back the curtain. There, lying on the floor of the shower, was Renee, dead. Throat slashed, just like Ronnie. Joanna could sense the killer was still in the apartment. She headed for the kitchen, and found that the phones had all been cut. "This is right out of those slasher movies.", she thought. "Only I'm not ready to be a victim." She pulled a flashlight from the cabinet, and flashed it toward her bedroom. There, on her bed, crouched to attack, was a cougar, or, at the very least, a were-cougar. "Oh. My. God.", Joanna said to herself, crossing herself as she went. =================================================== Why would a were-cougar kill the Twins' classmates? And are Jodi, Carl, & Jessie on the hit list? We'll find out in chapter 2.