by Vendikarr DeWuff and Starsky Hutch 76
Molly Maynne Scott was stretching out on the couch in her husband’s office, loving the way her youthful body felt — so limber, so energetic, so very much alive. She glanced at Alan, thinking that she couldn’t wait to get him home to show him how alive she felt.
The intercom in the office buzzed. “Mr. Scott, Miss Hayden is on line two.”
Alan Scott hit the button. “Thank you, Marcie.” Then he picked up the phone. “Jennie, honey, how are you?” There was a brief pause as he listened. “That’s great, honey. Molly, Jennie’s back from the island, and Helena is recovering nicely.”
“Give her my love,” replied Molly.
“Molly and I both send our… oh, ha-ha-ha, you heard her. What, honey?” He paused again to listen. “That’s wonderful, sweetie. Looking forward to seeing you then. OK, ‘bye. You, too.” Alan hung up the phone. “Molly, Jennie and Todd want to come to Gotham and visit. I agreed. Hope it’s OK.”
“Oh, Alan, like I would stop you from seeing your children. Is Jennie bringing Hank?”
“Yes,” Alan said, sighing. “I know Syl trusts him, but I am really bothered by him. I see too much of his father in him.”
“Alan, look who’s talking. Do you forget who married his greatest nemesis?”
“I didn’t marry Solomon Grundy.” Molly put on a pouting face, and Alan walked over and kissed her softly. “I’m teasing.”
“You’d better be, or I can call Jennie back and have her bring that thing, too.”
“OK, OK. I give. I just wish she could find someone else.”
“How about that young man we met at the Christmas party last year, when we were looking at buying this facility — the one from the Graphics Department? He seemed sweet enough. What was his name — Kyle something?”
“I remember him. Something about him rubbed me the wrong way. My little girl is too good for the likes of him. Besides, I heard he quit.”
“Yeah, he went to New York. He’s trying to become an artist. Bum is more like it.”
“Alan Scott, you moved from one job to another yourself in your youth. Just takes some time for some young men to find their place.”
“I suppose. Hey, maybe I can see if Marcie is doing anything this weekend. I really think she and Todd could hit it off. She already told me that she and Norda are just friends, after all.”
Jennie-Lynn Hayden had met Marcie Cooper and her sister Sharon through school last year and had set up Sharon and Marcie on a blind date with Todd Rice and Norda Cantrell. Sharon Cooper had been completely uninterested in Todd, while Marcie Cooper continued to date Norda for a while, but not exclusively. (*) It had been the recommendation by Norda, the member of Infinity Inc. known as Northwind, that Molly had hired Marcie. Originally Molly had planned to have Marcie work at GBC’s Los Angeles branch, but when she proved to be such a great secretary, Molly asked her if she was willing to relocate to the East Coast. Marcie had agreed enthusiastically.
[(*) Editor’s note: See “Concert in the Key of Chroma,” Infinity Inc. #14 (May, 1985).]
“And what is it they say about women being matchmakers?”
“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” responded Alan, a hint of indignation in his voice.
In New York City, a young man exited a bar, intending to walk to his apartment down the alley. He took three steps and was stopped by a blinding flash of yellow light.
He was then stopped by a man in a weird hat, carrying what looked like lightning bolts in a quiver of some kind.
“Human, what world is this?” demanded the man. “This was the only place where the boundaries between worlds was weakest.”
“World? It’s Earth. Duh,” responded the man.
“I know that, fool. But which Earth? Lord Sinestro awaits his replacement ring, and I have been charged with delivering it.”
“I’m afraid I don’t understand.”
“Who are the heroes of this world, then?”
“Umm, Superman, Flash, Doctor Fate, Green Lantern, Wild–”
“Green Lantern! Then I have arrived in the right place. But I cannot stay. The fabric of realities is weaving stronger. I must go quickly.”
The man reached into a pouch and handed something to the young human. “Take this. Lord Sinestro will search you out when he needs it.”
With that, the strange being disappeared in a flash again, leaving an obviously confused young man standing there. He stared down at his hand and remarked to himself, “I think I had one beer too many.”
Kyle Rayner then put the yellow ring in his pocket and walked the rest of the way home.
Alexandra DeWitt sat and watched AM America on WGNY while she rummaged through the bottom of her purse looking for bus fare so she could get to work on time. “Twenty-five, thirty-five, thirty-seven…” Shook her purse, then turned it over on the coffee table. “Oh, I give up.”
She got up and walked into the bedroom. “Kyle, do you have any change?” He didn’t move. “Kyle, do you have any change? I need to get to work.”
He lifted his head and mumbled, “Mhpphf coat pocket,” then dropped his head back on the bed.
“My hero,” she said sarcastically. She grabbed his coat and looked at him. Alex was glad he was here. She had missed him, even if she would never tell him that. When he was in his groove, he was the most talented artist she had ever seen. But he didn’t hit his groove often enough.
The truth was that Kyle Rayner was unmotivated and irresponsible. She found those traits both endearing and frustrating. She wanted him to make it, but he didn’t have the discipline. She had tried to get him a job at the paper as a cartoonist, but he turned it down. He was searching for his muse. Alex could understand that, but he seemed to search for his muse in bars far too often.
She reached her hand into his coat pocket and pulled out a handful of change and a yellow ring. Curious, she asked, “Kyle, where did this ring come from?”
He again mumbled, “Guy with lightning bolts gave it to me. Keep it if you want it.” Then he was asleep again.
Alex tried the ring on. At first it was too large, but then it quickly sized itself down to fit her finger, almost like magic. “Cool,” she said, and was about to ask Kyle if he saw that, when she heard a loud snore from the bed. She instead put down his coat and left the room.
Grabbing her purse and camera, she ran to the elevator and just barely managed to catch it. Must be my lucky day, she thought and took the ride to the ground floor.
She walked to the corner to catch the bus and heard a screeching sound. Alex realized that two cars were about to collide. The screech went down her spine, and she screamed, “Stop!”
With that, two yellow beams of energy radiated from the ring, forming two hands that picked up the cars before colliding. Then the hands released the cars, and they fell loudly to the ground.
Alex saw it and couldn’t believe it. That came from her ring. Other people saw it as well, including the drivers of the two cars that were dropped. Alex decided it would be best to leave, thinking to herself, Gotta fly.
With that, the ring radiated energy that lifted her off of the ground, and she took to the sky. It seemed that she controlled where she flew just by thinking it. Alex was excited, to say the least. She had a power ring just like Green Lantern. And she had helped someone already — well, sort of helped.
She decided she liked the power of the ring, but she needed to know how to control it. And the only one she could think of who could help lived in Gotham City.
Alex landed on a rooftop and called work, telling them she had to go to Gotham for an emergency. She left a similar message for Kyle. She then took to the air toward Gotham, trying to figure out how to get the attention of the Green Lantern.
“Good night, Mr. and Mrs. Scott,” Marcie said pleasantly. “Have a pleasant afternoon.”
“You, too,” Alan Scott said. “If anything really pressing should come up, just call me at home. That is, if it’s definitely something that can’t be handled without me.”
“Will do, Mr. Scott,” Marcie said knowingly. In other words, he really didn’t want to be bothered, which was fine with her.
The elevator doors closed on the couple, and Marcie eased back in her chair with a relieved sigh. Thank God they were gone, she thought. Ever since she’d become involved in the plot, having one of them around was bad, but both were unbearable.
She stepped into Alan Scott’s office and looked for any clues she could find to help her carry out her orders. She didn’t hold out much hope for anything of use being in Mr. Scott’s office. The best hope would be to somehow get into their home. She’d thought about trying to date his son. Then, perhaps, she might be invited in. That might take too long, though.
Suddenly, she saw a ray of hope — or, to be more precise, the old bat had left her purse behind. She could drop by and return it during the day, and that would get her inside.
She sat down on the sofa with the purse, and out of curiosity she began to dig through it. It was filled with the usual things you’d find in a purse — wallet, makeup, gum, a comb, a pill box, and keys. There were keys, she realized, keys to the Scott house, keys to their alarm. All she had to do was make copies of these keys, and then she could get in there anytime she wanted to and look around at her leisure.
One slightly smaller key made her suddenly realize it might not be as simple as that. It was a small key sporting a bank logo — probably the key to a safety deposit box. If that was where the object she was looking for was, her objective might be more difficult than she had planned. How could she get past the bank manager and the guards to use this key to get what she was after? The irony was, if she already had it, getting past them would be no problem at all.