Women of Power – Chapter 4 Excerpt

Azure Hotel;

Downtown Chicago;

The hotel room door opened revealing Linda Ford wrapped up in a fluffy complementary hotel robe. She had obviously just gotten out of the shower.  Her blond hair hung limply down to her shoulders.  Her face was very pale.

“I’m glad to see you’re alive,” said Stella, pushing her way inside.  “I brought your clothes and I picked up our pizzas.  We can eat them for dinner.”

“I don’t think I’m hungry.” Linda closed the door and then walked to the bed and plopped down on it.

“Why didn’t you let me know you were leaving the hospital?  I was sitting in the waiting room, looking like an idiot.”

“Sorry,” said Linda, curling up into a ball and closing her eyes.  “I didn’t realize you were still there.  I just had to get out.  I hate hospitals.”

“Well, who doesn’t? Can you warm up this pizza with your heat vision or something?”

“I don’t really feel like it.  There’s a microwave in the kitchenette.”

Stella found the microwave and stuck three pieces of thick deep dish in it, turning the dial to four minutes.  Just below the microwave was a tiny refrigerator, and she squeezed Skygirl’s pizza slice and side salad into it.

While she waited for the food to heat, she stepped over to the bedside and looked down at the other girl. Her breathing was deep and regular. Stella assumed she had fallen asleep, but when she covered her up with a quilt, Linda responded with “thank you.”

The couch was still covered with the plastic storage boxes filled with Stella’s belongings from her destroyed apartment.  Stacking them off to the side, she made a bed for herself with the extra pillow from the bed and a spare blanket from a closet.  After finishing her pizza, she found a spare complimentary hotel toothbrush in the bathroom, brushed her teeth, then lay down and drifted off into a fitful sleep.

It was not quite 10:30 AM when Stella woke up.  Linda was no longer in her bed.  In her place was a handwritten note from a hotel notepad that said “meet me on the roof.” Stella took the time for a quick shower before putting on her costume and flying out the window and up to the top of the building.

Linda, or rather Skygirl since she wasn’t wearing her brown wig, was lying on a quilt.  She wore a pair of dark sunglasses and a bright purple bikini, which Stella noted barely contained those giant breasts; didn’t do anything for those huge thighs though.  A small cooler filled with soft drinks and a daily newspaper sat beside her.

“Good morning,” said Skygirl.

“Good morning.  You’re looking better.”

She did look better too. The color had returned to her skin and there was no sign of the sickness that had ravaged her the day before.

“I just needed to get out in the sunshine.  What are you planning to do today?”

“I have to find a new place to live.  I can’t crash on your couch forever.”

“I kind of wanted to talk to you about that.”  Skygirl sat up and pulled the glasses down below her eyes.  “I thought that maybe you and I could be roommates, that is, if I decided to relocate.”

“I don’t think so. Chicago doesn’t really need another superhero.  I’m already here and so are those twins with the magic rings—I never can remember their names.  Look, I know you have like, this super-club back in Kansas City with Comet-Knight and the witch, and your brother…”

“Skyboy isn’t really my brother…”

“Whatever.  The point is: I don’t play well with others. That’s why I’m here, you know.” She made air quotes.  “In the mortal realm.”

“I wondered about that. Aren’t your parents gods or something?”

“No, they’re not gods. My father is a demigod, which just means hisparents were gods.  And my mother is an Amazon, which I used to think meant she was a warrior woman, but apparently just means she’s some kind of immortal hoe-bag.”

“What about your name? Stella O’Claire doesn’t sound like anyone from Mount Olympus.”

“Stella really is my name. It’s because my mother said I had stars in my eyes.”  Stella made a face.  “When I got here though I landed on O’Claire Boulevard, so I just went with it.  Now most people think the street was named after me rather than the other way around, which is cool.  But anyway…”

Instead of just standing up, Linda kind of levitated and then turned around so that her feet touched the surface of the roof.

“I don’t fit in.  I don’t fit in there, in Kansas City.  Ebony Witch was Dad’s friend, not mine, Comet-Knight is an old perv, and Skyboy… well, it’s just kind of creepy hanging out with a fifteen year old version of your dad.  Besides, I thought we made a great team yesterday.”

“We did alright…”

“Maybe we could just try it out for a while, you know roommates and partners…”

“Teammates,” corrected Stella.  “Roommates and partners makes us sound like lesbians.”

“Right, teammates.  So we should get an apartment together.”

Stella rolled her eyes and let out a big sigh.  “On a trial basis.”

Skygirl clapped her hands together.  “Yay! I’ve already found a place in the paper that we need to go look at.”

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