Shimmer #37 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 7)

Max barked, jumped, laid his paws on my chest and lunged to lick my face. Amidst the sea of animals who’d gained a new level of dangerous it was a change to find one who was a friend.

“I’m glad to see you too, boy,” I grinned. What would Mrs Stevenson think if she could see him now?

The rhino began to stir and planted a hoof in the dirt. Before long it would be up again, charging at the tigers, trying to stomp them out like a jungle fire. Even at full power I couldn’t hold the beast down; what else could I do?

Max jumped in front and started to growl.

Continue reading

Shimmer #36 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 6)

Finding my way around the zoo wasn’t hard; all I had to do was follow the shrieks.

Shooting over the enclosures I entered the reptile park, past the house and to the pool inside a chain link fence. The sign and the picture said ‘alligators’; combine that with powers and you can imagine the hairs pricking on my neck.

The atmosphere was full of swears, and somewhere in the middle was the cry of “get me the hell away from this thing!”

I jolted to a stop and searched for the voice. Across the way, high on the branch of a tree, a man with blonde, curly hair danced away from snapping of jaws. The gator was inches away, given new reach by the long hind legs that supported it upright.

He turned and squealed. “Glimmer Girl! Thank you! Come get me!”

Continue reading

Shimmer #35 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 5)

The TV said the city was working with InfiniTech, so that’s where I had to be.

SWAT teams lined the perimeter of the abstract buildings. They trained their rifles in my direction but didn’t fire; probably to protect from flying predators that followed. (At least that’s what I’d like to think.)

I picked a building and phased inside. There I was greeted by wide eyes and slack jaws in lab coats. They stopped their work and stared. It was almost as if they’d never seen a superhero before.

Moments dripped away before I cleared my throat. “I, uh… hi.”

They looked at each other, but still said nothing.

Collecting myself I placed my hands on my hips, pushing an aura of resolve. “I heard you’re having problems with your pets. I’m here to help.”

One lab coat remarked to the other, “we should call Professor Danvers.”

Continue reading

Shimmer #34 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 4)

The MSPCA, or the Milestone Society for the Protection and Care of Animals, is famous for serving the community for nearly a century. Every year they find hundreds of new homes for cats and dogs, if you believe the commercials anyway, treat countless strays, and provide them with shelter.

Then the animals got super-powers, and all hell broke loose. I was halfway to the cat pen on the west side of the city and could only imagine what kind of carnage they were wreaking. Were they like the electric kitty I’d faced, or worse?

I planted my feet on the grass outside and watched cracks run along the bricks on the front wall. Meanwhile, an endless torso stretched around the yard, looping back into itself as the front end of a white cat sprinted around for another lap. It seemed to go on forever.

Hissing and growling drowned all other sound. Were these cats, or were they lions? There was only one way to know for sure, and I was inching my way toward it.

Continue reading

Shimmer #33 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 3)

The comforter lived up to its namesake, even in spring when all it did was sweat. It blocked the light and sound of the morning that hounded from beyond the windows. Whatever the day had planned would have to battle fabric and downy feathers to reach me.

I lay on my side and ran a finger along the neck of my night shirt. It was a flimsy thing, perfect for the season, with rock n’ roll girls in cat costumes decorating the front. Apparently it was a cartoon from the 70’s, but whatever; it was cute, and it was a garment not prescribed to boys.

So why did my hand continue to wander? Despite the gender of the shirt there were no breasts to fill it. Instead there was me. What the hell was I when ‘Justin’ invaded my life?

Maybe, I reasoned, I could get more sleep. Yeah, fat chance of that happening.

Suddenly the comforter was under assault; not by parents, but a shriek. I jumped up and searched the room; the danger wasn’t there, but out the window and across the street. Following the sound of panic I raced to the sill and peered out.

Continue reading

Shimmer #32 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 2)

Twenty miles from Milestone is a reservation. On nights like these when stargazers flee the city the locals open their gates and share the celestial wonder; that and, you know, bring in tourist dollars.

On the other side of the hills the city was a memory, and in its place was rolling plains, rivers and pine trees. If it weren’t for the shacks lining the highway and the string of traffic you might have forgotten about humans.

Tanya and I lounged in the back seat of the SUV with Angie, her little sister, strapped between us. We’d spent most of the trip playing ‘eye spy’, a game which is harder when one of you can’t spell.

Somewhere around nine we found a parking space and started to unpack. Tanya’s mom loaded my arms with folding chairs, picnic blankets and a grocery bag filled with snacks. Never let it be said that she wasn’t prepared.

Continue reading

Shimmer #31 – “The Reign of Cats and Dogs” (Part 1)

Anyone who’s been a teenager knows money is hard to come by, and it was no exception for me. What passed as allowance had suddenly dried up, probably because my parents thought I would spend it on reassignment surgery or something; who knows? They weren’t really talking about it.

Still, if I was going to have any kind of life I needed a way to make cash.

“Dog walking, huh,” Mrs. Hirschfeld grimaced.

“Are you sure? Queenie can be a bit of a handful,” Mrs. Thompson hummed.

“I can’t afford to pay you very much,” Ms. Simms reasoned.

“I’m juggling three kids and the hubby isn’t home ‘til nine,” Mr. Gonzales exclaimed. “Honestly, a dog walker would be a godsend!”

Continue reading

Glimmer Girl PLUS Bonfire #02 – “Fire and Light” (Part 2)

Glimmer Girl created and owned by Miranda Sparks.
Bonfire and related concepts created and owned by Crystal Frasier.
Story co-plotted by Miranda Sparks and Crystal Frasier, written by Miranda Sparks.

So, here’s the story so far:

My name is Glimmer Girl, a superhero.

The girl in red; Bonfire, a prefect at the Apex Institute. Her job was to convince me that superhero school would be a step in the right direction.

In front of us: robots. Lots of robots. Under the control of school network-raider HaXX0r, their job was to convince me that enrolling would be a bad, bad idea. Unofficially. It was more of their hobby, really. Killing all humans seemed to be their nine-to-five.

Oh, and those metal things clasped to our wrists? Those weren’t fashion accessories; they were power inhibitors, meaning that Bonfire and I only had our wits to survive.

Not exactly an ideal start to the weekend.

Continue reading

Glimmer Girl PLUS Bonfire #01 – “Fire and Light” (Part 1)

Glimmer Girl created and owned by Miranda Sparks.
Bonfire, related characters and concepts created and owned by Crystal Frasier.
Story co-plotted by Miranda Sparks and Crystal Frasier, written by Miranda Sparks.

There was a time I would have asked myself what kind of a school uses giant robots in its classes, but not anymore. The Apex Institute had a lot of answers to questions I never even thought to ask, like how long could a hero like me last in a labyrinth of death?

I ducked in time to avoid a one ton fist attempting to clip me from behind, only to fly into and weave through a gauntlet of blades. Steel ran along my body, inches away from being lethal. It was like one of those obstacle course game shows for kids, dipped in a nightmare and planted in the middle of a classroom.

“You’re doing great, Glimmer Girl,” the headmaster’s voice blared. “Don’t forget to watch your six.”

‘Watch your six,’ he says; not when I was watching my nine to three!

“She has got a lot of confidence for someone so… hasty,” the voice of his companion echoed; they must have forgotten to turn off the PA.

“I can still-ARGH!”

No time for banter; not with piledrivers slamming from the roof. I dodged the blows, but not without a few hits. Where was the exit? There were none in my line of sight.

Continue reading

Shimmer – Valentine’s Day Special 2015 – “A Date to Remember”

Part One

The day has come; February 14, Valentine’s Day.

Are you nervous?

You remember going down to the newsstand and seeing the cover; “Win a Date with Glimmer Girl.” Beside the caption was a photo of the hero, dressed in her usual orange and gold, hands on hips and smiling into the fourth wall, at you.

Something in your chest stirred. The idea that you could sit with a real life superhero, let alone Glimmer Girl, was laughable at best; and yet you couldn’t resist picking up the magazine.

Scouring the insides you sought out the details. Proceeds go toward a free youth counselling service right in the heart of Milestone City, the competition was open to anyone under twenty, like you, and it was open to all genders.

Continue reading