V.A.N.I.S.H undercover

The smoke hung like smog in the room as I sit fingering my .45. I am sitting in a padded wooden chair. My dark gray suit jacket lays over the desk in front of me. The clock on the wall behind me ticks in my ear, a constant reminder of how long I had been here. I tense as the door handle turns. I immediately balance my pistol on one knee as the door opens. The man I have been waiting for steps through the door, but immediately pauses as he spots me. “Come in, Jackson.” I say and he closes the door behind him.
He steps closer, his eyes wide. “It’s you!” He whispers hoarsely.
My eyes narrow. “So you know me?”
He straightens, positively shaking with fear. “Uh, n-no. I th-thought you were someone else.”
I chuckle. “Don’t patronize me, Jackson. She told you to watch out for me. Oh, and I removed the gun from the drawer you are currently reaching for.”
He sighs and moves his hand away. “What do you want?”
“Information. You were in contact with her and I know you were. I want a name and you have it. tell me now or you will never say anything again.”
He shakes his head. “I don’t know-”
“Fine.” I cock my pistol and my finger presses on the trigger.
“Okay! Fine! I’ll tell you!” He is nearly a nervous wreck at this point.
I gesture to a pen and paper sitting on the desk. “Write it down and slide it over to me.”
He complies and pushes the paper towards me with trembling fingers. “Now are you happy?”
I ease down the the hammer of my .45 and stand up. “Very.” The knife whips upward towards me and my finger tightens on the trigger. The shot rings out in the dim room and the knife clatters to the floor.
I fold the paper and slip it into my pocket. Picking up my jacket, I dust it off and slip it on. I step out into the hall and, after calling it in to the station, I make my way down stairs and out into the busy street. My stomach rumbles and I remember that it’s lunch time. I’m thinking Chinese…


“A paper from the science department got mixed in with the assignments for the English class.” I reported, handing Zarina the stray paper.

“Oh! Thank you,” she hurriedly returned the paper to the science department file cabinet and grinned.

“Anything else?”

“No, thank you for your time.” I nodded slightly and left the room.

My work was done at the school for today, and so was the day itself. I filled out my time sheet and left the office. I’d already been through all the office information, nothing important. Just like the sad little town of Sunstreak City.

It was a thriving metropolis before the hero’s Great Downfall. The famous heroine Rebelle guarded over the city, combating every evil that threatened the town. Most believed the Rebelle to be dead. I, on the other hand, think otherwise.

We the agents of V.A.N.I.S.H. have one main goal; take down the agents of G.O.N.E. without the world ever knowing they, or we, exist.

I walked down the muddy side walk passed the gymnasium to my apartment complex; also known as the cheapest place to room in Sunstreak City.

Before the Great Downfall, it was a four-star hotel, serving only the best in town. However, the grey three-story building looming in front of would never be considered a suitable place to stay by anyone non-local.

Personally, I don’t blame them. The Summer Morning apartment complex has to be the worst place I’ve ever stayed undercover. However, V.A.N.I.S.H. only gave me enough to afford a room there, a room on the third floor. . .

I marched up the outdoor fire escape stairs to access the third floor. There’s an elevator inside the building, but the operator will only take you to the second. Why? Because the third floor of The Summer Morning doubles as the town ghetto. All the riffraff live there nearly for free. It’s the cheapest, and most appalling place to live. I don’t mind it much, though. Nobody bothers me in my room at least, privacy is all I really need.

I stepped over heaps of garbage and sleeping bodies to my room. It’s one of the few on the third floor with a whole door and a working lock. I can’t express how grateful I am of that.

With a flourish, I yanked the white sheet off my board of suspects, just a little something to help me pinpoint possible Goners. I had several suspects, however, I hadn’t gotten close enough to any of them to find any solid evidence.

I studied the board carefully, going over each suspect.

Tracer Dell, the martial arts instructor. Evidence, mostly behavioral. In need of more proof.

I glanced at the next photo, in it, a woman in her thirties flashed a triumphant smile.

Renia Sharpgaze, the English teacher/my employer. Evidence, her secret hatred of her job/possible cover. Will continue investigation.

My gaze then fell on the photograph of a man, a rather nervous looking one.

Peter Jackson, drug store clerk. Evidence, his mysterious off-goings. He could possibly be meeting other agents.

I stared at his photo a bit longer, considering his character. The agents of G.O.N.E. did their best to tear down goodness bit by bit and give the former super villains a triumphal return to rule a fallen world. Peter Jackson, on the other hand, didn’t seem to attempt any such thing.

Thing are never as they seem I reminded myself. Then, another thought came to mind.

Note: check archives for records of medical perception poisoning

I recovered my board and removed it from it’s stand to slide it under my cot. I uncovered a hole in my under-stuffed mattress and felt about for my communicator; my one and only way of contacting my V.A.N.I.S.H. manager.

Just as my hand closed around my communicator, I heard a knock at the door.

Not him again I thought irritably.

Why salesmen even bothered climbing the fire escape stairs to advertise to the dwellers of the third floor, I couldn’t imagine. We could barely afford to survive! Why on earth would we buy your product?

Then, an idea came to mind. Quickly, I recovered the hole in my mattress, slowing my pace to approach the door.

“Hello?” I asked, trying not to sound too annoyed.



“It’s cold.”
Toby Holden shivered slightly in his buttoned polo shirt and black overcoat.
“It’s cold.”
He pulled it closer to himself, but it didn’t do much to improve the chill he felt all over.
“It’s cold.”
“It’s snowing. It’s sub-zero. That’s what it is. It’s cold.” The words snaked out of his clenched teeth. He imagined that they froze in midair and fell to the concrete steps he was standing on.
“It’s cold.”
Open the door. Just open it already. The thoughts ran and bounced about in Toby’s head. Though like any moving water molecule, they began to slow to a dull, frozen pace. Soon, only one thought manifested properly.
“It’s cold.”
Finally, he had enough. The idea of kicking down the small white door with peeling paint increasingly made more sense to do. Though he wasn’t sure how he’d do that with both kneecaps frozen as they were.
“It’s cold.”
He settled for knocking. Rapping on the door with his knuckles as hard as he could (Barely felt a thing); someone came to the door.
“It’s cold.”
“You bet it is,” said the person behind the door. “And who are you?”
“It’s cold.”
“You don’t need to tell me, buddy, but I’m not letting you in until I at least know your name.” Toby could hear the woman behind the door gribbing the knob tightly and moving it slightly—but not towards opening it.
“That’s alright,”
Toby said with a frozen smile. The knob loosened ever so slightly. Toby raised a leg and kicked as hard as he could. With a shout, the person behind it fell back. The door, only somewhat out of place now, made enough space for the person to see his black fedora.

“Oh no. It’s you,” she said.
With another kick, the door was finished, and Toby stepped inside. He exhaled with a smile—a small mist emanating from his mouth. “Thanks for letting me in,” he said, shaking his head and the snow off.
“It was cold.”


I sighed in irritation.

Why are you even here? I thought irritably.

“Thanks for breaking down my door,” I said in a monotone, “I was getting too attached to it anyway.”

“Pleasure’s all mine,” he replied with a frozen, oily smile.

“Now what do you want?” I growled, not adding you vandalizing scoundrel

“To warm up, for one,” he replied, noticing not much difference between my apartment and half-sheltered outside hall.

Large sections of the roof are missing, allowing the snow to drift in.

“We don’t have heating on the third floor.” I stated, hoping he’d be leaving through my now-empty doorway soon.

“I noticed,” he remarked.

I studied him silently as he went on with his speech, not hearing a word of it in my concentration.

Is he goner material? Yes. Note: Add him to suspect board once gone.

I returned to the present only to find him still talking, If he ever leaves I thought irritably.


I turn my collar up as I exit the motel. I can see my breath in the chilly air as I walk down the street towards Wong’s Wantons. I glance around, unconsciously conscious of every detail. The white pickup parked by the street with the licence plate 2T617E, the man wearing the blue wind breaker who was obviously casing the bank across the street, the homeless man in the alley that was more well to do then he appeared. I am aware of everything without even realizing as I near the restaurant.
I turn the corner and the restaurant comes into view. In spite of the many people who crowd the sidewalk, I notice one man leaned against the side of a building talking on his cellphone. I continue walking as red flags begin waving. The way his brown leather shoes were covered in mud, the way his heavy coat was unzipped in spite of the cold, the way his right hand hung ready at his side, it was all wrong.
I slow my steps a little, turning towards a small newspaper stand. After purchasing a paper I continue walking past the man still talking on his cellphone. Most likely there was no one on the other end.
Suddenly I turn into an alley and out of sight. I open the newspaper and lean against the building, waiting. I glance up as footsteps approach. Slowly the man appears around the corner, his hand close to his jacket, ready to draw. I look up and nod to him casually. “Crazy things happening these days.” He opens his mouth to respond. For a split second he is off guard, that split second… was all I needed. In a flash I shove the newspaper in his face. He claws at the paper as I push his head to the side with my left hand. I pull my right fist back, then lash out with all my strength, striking him in the lower jaw about an inch from the chin. His head jerks backwards with a crack. With a small groan he collapses to the ground. Reaching into his left coat pocket, I pull a 9.mm revolver. I take aim and fire three times. Once above the heart, once at the bottom of his left lung and once at his forehead. I wipe the finger prints from the handle with the paper and toss it down the alley.
I quickly ball up my newspaper and throw it in the trash can. I exit the alley and walk steadily in the other direction. I knew from experience that once seen the cause of death would be immediately attributed to the bullet wounds. I knew from experience that no one would notice the small bruise at the base of his chin. I knew that it would most likely be accounted as the work of a local gang. I knew from experience… and that’s why I had survived as long as I had.


Toby looked behind him to see Kathrine staring straight back. He couldn’t tell what she was thinking, but he had a good enough idea.
“You’re making me the antagonist, baby,” he said with an amused tone.
Deciding she wasn’t a threat at the moment, he walked down the small hall. One specific room he was looking for.
The first two yielded closets. One filled with cleaning supplies and the other with towels and such cloths. Toby came to the last door in the hall. Knowing she could still hear him, he spoke, “Don’t tell me all you’ve got here are closets, Smithhammer.” His smile died down as he opened the last door, and his voice became lower. “'Cause you know what I’m looking for.”

The door opened to reveal a small bedroom nearly bare. Only a bed and a simply nightstand stood.
Toby finished searching within two minutes. Nothing; only another set of clothes and other small particulars.

He came back into the main room where Kathrine was now standing. Her stare still piercing Toby’s own.
“Get out,” she said quietly.

Toby tipped his fedora slightly and shrugged. “Was just about to.”
But instead of walking past her to the door, he only turned to the kitchen. “But you and I both know I can’t do that until I find what I’m looking for.”
Closing the second kitchen cabinet, he looked back and smiled. “It’d help if you just told me where it was, you know? Save a lot of time too.”
“Hm? What do you say?”


(I hat to intrude on this lovely conversation, but business is business.:smirk:)

Crash! I stop and look up, startled by the sudden sound. I am standing by a large apartment building. The crash seemed to come from inside. I sigh, I guess I should do my job. I am a detective after all. I turn and enter the building. After jogging up several flights of stairs I finally see an empty doorway. It wasn’t just that, however, it was more the beaten up door that lay inside. I touch the butt of my gun with hand as I slowly reach the door…
@Exploding_Kitten @Xonos_Darkgrate


As if! I snapped mentally.

I stared fire at Toby, wishing he would leave. It was going to take a lot more then asking to find my notebook, or my communicator, whichever he was after this time.

“Ah, you’ll play it the hard way then.”

“No,” I whispered, “I’ll play it my way.”

I grabbed my trusty broom out swing it at Toby, “You break down my door to enter my home and ransack my things to find my private property? Get out!”

Toby sighed and shook his head, “You know what this is abo-”

“Get out!” I yell, hitting him over the head with the broom.

Toby rubbed his head, he was about to reply, when something caught his eye. His face shifted into an uneasy frown. I turned to see who Toby had seen, Tracer Dell stood in my empty doorway, one hand hidden inside his coat.

I straitened my posture, keeping the rising worries at bay, “Hello Mr. Dell, nice to see you.”

@Xonos_Darkgrate @PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor


I know I’m not gonna be at work on time if I take the average route, so I cut through a gym. The teacher is looking at me oddly. I get a strange feeling in the pit of my stomach. “Hey!” She calls to me.
“Yeah? What is it? I’m pretty busy!”
“What’s your name? I’ve never seen you around.”
“Yeah, well, you must be blind, I’m Rosie Locke, and I’m late for work. Bye!”

Hmm, that woman was odd…


I sit up groggily in my room, listening to all the banging, crashing, and slamming, and screaming. “Wharg!!” I scream. "Can’t get any SLEEP around here!!” I grabbed a pistol (it wasn’t loaded, just for show) and ran upstairs. I stopped dead in my tracks. There was a knocked down door, two guys and a girl in a room looking very strange…

I screamed. They turned. I pulled out my pistol. “Sto-sto-sto-sto-stop right there,” I blurted. I held my breath, waiting for a reaction…

@Exploding_Kitten @PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor @Xonos_Darkgrate


I stop in my tracks as the girl, I believe her name is Katherine, turns. "Hello Mr. Dell, nice to see you.” I move my hand away from my gun, keeping my eyes on the Asian guy in the Indiana Jones hat. “Not sure I can say the same.” I reply, wondering how she knew my name. I pull my badge from my coat pocket, noticing with interest how they both tense as I do, and hold it up fo them to see. “Detective Dell with the NYPD. Is there a disturbance here?” Indiana Jones smirks and steps forward, about to lie probably, but suddenly stops. I turn as I hear a click and a loud yell. A girl stands behind us, a gun clinched in her hands, her face pale.
I smile at her. “It’s okay, I am Detective Dell with the NYPD.” I hold up my badge for reference. her eyes move to it just as I make my move. I lash out, striking the barrel while at the same time pressing down on her wrists. With a swift turn, the gun slides out of her grasp and into my hand. I step back, ejecting the clip and separating the chamber from the firing mechanism. I smile again at the trembling girl. “It’s not good to play with guns, Miss.”

@Xonos_Darkgrate @Exploding_Kitten @Redwall22


I freeze. “It’s not good to play with guns, miss,” the detective says. I squeak. “What do you want with me?” I whisper, barely audible. I notice he separated my gun into parts. I step slowly into the room. “Wh-what are you even doing here?!” I whisper.

@PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor (that move was awesome, btw!!) @Xonos_Darkgrate @Exploding_Kitten


I step to the side, keeping all three in my peripheral vision. “Actually the question is what are all of you doing here?” I tuck my badge back into my pocket and stand, arms crossed, waiting for an explanation.

@Exploding_Kitten @Redwall22 @Xonos_Darkgrate


“Blind?” Tanya grumbled. But Rosie Locke, what a stupid name, was already across the gymnasium before she could really do anything, and she couldn’t run after her without looking suspicious. Still, whoever it was had disrupted her gym class and was at least annoying. And annoying people were worth investigating to see if there was a suitable excuse to eliminate them.

She hoisted her clipboard with an angry breath. “Rosanne Angelique!”

“Here!” a pretty blond girl in a pink leotard answered. Tanya had already crossed her well off the list of possible suspects - Rosanne seemed to care only about how popular she was and how cool her friends were.

“Sue Bearstein!”

“Here!” Another non-suspect. She was nerdy, a complete klutz and spent several minutes studying each move as if it were in an imaginary textbook.

“Daniel Branson!”

“Here!” Questionable. He was a dark and reserved type who didn’t talk, but he was one of Tanya’s best pupils, executing moves with precision. He also spent time with the school dance team which seemed to win him the appreciation of the popular girls. But he didn’t seem interested in them.

And so on it went. Nerds, airheads - but most of her students in her after-school class were serious gymnasts, or at least trying to be. After a warm-up, Tanya set up a vault routine to burn off some energy while letting some of the others practice some bar technique for a competition that they were entering.


Strange strange woman, I thought, running down the street to the gas station. Ben the janitor was there, but no one else. “Hey Ben, wassup?” I asked.
“A gas emergency came up. No work today,” he replied.
“Oh,” I replied. I turned and walked back toward my home, the second floor of the Summer Morning apartment complex. But as I neared the building, I felt something familiar in the pit of my stomach. It excited me. I hadn’t felt it since my superhero days. I rubbed the crystal on my necklace and closed my eyes. I could sense the problem was coming from the top floor of the apartment. “Ugh,” I grumbled.

I find the fire escape and take the steps two by two, keeping to the left side of the railing so that whoever’s inside doesn’t see me. I plaster myself to the wall and listen…

@Exploding_Kitten @Redwall22 @Xonos_Darkgrate @PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor


“I-I heard a bunch of n-noise,” I say, trying not to look frightened. “What are you guys doing here?” I say, turning to the girl and the guy who was not the detective. “Who are you anyway?!!”

@Exploding_Kitten @Xonos_Darkgrate @PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor


“Actually the question is what are all of you doing here?” Mr. Dell asked, crossing his arms.

“I-I heard a bunch of n-noise,” said the newest girl, I’d seen her before, she lived downstairs on the second floor, the nicer rooms.

“Who are you anyway?” she shouted.

I sighed and shook my head, “I live here!” I snapped, my patience running dry. I jabbed a finger at Toby, “This fellow kicked down my door and began ransacking my apartment!”

Toby glared as I continued, he knew there was more to the story then I made out. However, would he reveal his true reason to defend himself?

“I barely have a dime anyway! Why else would I live in the ghetto?” I snapped, using the common name for the Summer Morning’s third floor rooms.

I as I spoke, I noted a shuffling on the fire escape. Casually, I stepped around my broken door and opened the fire escape to reveal an eavesdropper, an English student I recognized.

“Rosie!” I greeted her cheerfully, “So nice to see you! Sorry for all the noise up here, just a few problems. In the mean time, how’s your homework coming?”

@MulanLightFury @PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor @Redwall22 @Xonos_Darkgrate


Nervously I shuffle into the room. My crystal glows red, and I clutch it to hide it. I observe the people in the room. A salesman, a dangerous looking person, my English teacher’s assistant, and a shaking girl. “Homework’s fine,” I reply slowly. “I’m having some trouble with the newer English material.”

I don’t like the younger man. Does he have a gun? I wonder. “Is there something the matter?” I ask.

@Redwall22 @PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor @Xonos_Darkgrate


“NO!” I quickly exclaim, blinking my eyes rapidly. The detective catches it and steps in front of me. “Nothing’s wrong, nope, nope, NOPE!!!” I say. I mentally slap my self and steady myself with deep breaths. I slowly start inching toward my gun…

@PlͥⱥgͣuͫeDoctor @Exploding_Kitten @MulanLightFury @Xonos_Darkgrate


“The newer material is hard, yes. I can help you if you like,”

I strolled over to the newest girl and placed a hand on her shoulder, “Everything’s alright here,” I informed her, “Feel free to go back down stairs, the ghetto isn’t a fun place to be after dark.”

Especially when you don’t have a door any longer I thought bitterly.

I took her by the forearm and escorted her to the door, “By the way, do you attend SunStreak City High School?” I asked her, hoping Toby and Mr. Dell would soon leave.