Hi everyone! So remember how I said I was temporarily leaving behind the world of mythology to focus on other genera. So for my next endeavor I've decided to dive into the world of superheroes. Enjoy, and remember to review!

People come to Shreveport for one reason and one reason only. Not for the history (which only appeals to history geeks like me), not for the weather (which is quite fickle), not even (usually) the many big name concerts we get because of our strategic location between the major cities of Atlanta and Dallas (we're usually added as an extra stop to build up anticipation for the next show); no, the reason people come to Shreveport is the superheroes. Per capita, Shreveport has more superheroes than any other city in America (with the obvious exception of New York City); consequently, this also means Shreveport has more supervillains than any other city in America. Life can get kind of crazy because of all this, but you learn to roll with it.

Right, introductions; my name is Carter Travels, I'm sixteen years old, I'm from Shreveport (obviously), and I'm stuck in the predicament of being the only non-superhero among my friends. So how is this you might ask? Well like I said, Shreveport had a LOT of superheroes, so odds are good of encountering them in their civilian identities (whether you can identify them as such is an entirely different matter).

What really introduced me into the world of superheroes was the Astonishing Thoth; based off the name you might have guess that his theme is that of the Egyptian god of scribes, wisdom, and magic; well Thoth isn't based on the Egyptian god of the same name, he is the Egyptian god of the same name! For some reason that he has yet to reveal to me, Thoth wound up getting banished from the magical realm of the Duat, and banished to Earth as a teenager; the kicker in all of this is that he's still ibis-headed like in the myths, but uses his magic to disguise this fact; most of the time this works out for him, but then there's people like me who can somehow see thru it. Not look after I confronted him in his secret identity (aka, Alistair Haddo) about this fact, which was made all the more convenient as we go to the same high school, he let me be one of his secret keepers and friend.

Although Thoth treated our arrangement as purely business at first, we soon became genuine friends, and, one thing leading to another, we get the story you've just begun to read. So the events of this particular story started one Wednesday in history class; we learning about the World Wars and the effect superheroes played in them.

"It was Mr. Churchill's desire for a more decisive means of winning the war in the European Theater that lead to the creation of Union Jack; utilizing the work of American scientist and their creation of the Star-Spangled Man himself, British scientist were able to create a hero who embodied the hopes and dreams of the United Kingdom. Can anyone tell me how successful both Union Jack and his American cousin were?" asked Mr. Fulwider.

This was the opportunity I'd been waiting for, but I was beat to the punch by Mia Pallas (aka, the Amazing Athena). So about Athena, she's in the same boat as Thoth, kicked off of Olympus for some unnamed charge, and now serves her time on Earth as a teenage superhero.

"Yes Miss Pallas."

"Unfortunately the Axis Powers also had similar programs going on at the same time, so they really just balanced each other out," said Athena.

"Very good Miss Pallas. So after the war was over the Allies shut down their hero programs, and though the Government Funded Heroes found work fighting street level crime, it soon became clear that the best course of action would be to send them into cryonic preservation. Come back on Friday and we'll talk more about that."

As I walked to my locker to grab what I needed for the end of the day, I found Thoth waiting for me already.

"Hey man, so any plans for the evening?" asked Thoth.

"I was thinking maybe drop by and see my folk, maybe stay for…oh! Before anything else I need go to Albertsons!"

"Well then what are waiting for? Let's go!"

Now having a friend who's both a god and a superhero ought to mean we could have just teleported there or flown of something, but superheroes kind of have this thing about not drawing attention to their civilian identities, so we rode in my car. As we pulled into the parking lot I got this feeling that something weird was about to happen, but I tried to shake it off.

"You okay?" asked Thoth.

"Yeah it's just…have you ever got the feeling you were meant for something greater in life?"

"Well seeing as I'm a god, I can't really say I have. What makes you ask?"

"I was just thinking…do you think…I might be able to become a superhero?" I asked.

Thoth sighed. "We've been over this Carter, you should be happy that you're not."

"But you're…"

"Yes, yes, I get it dude! I'm a god made semi-mortal, and therefore my view is more cynical and not as credible! But you don't need to take my word for it, just come to HQ to night and see what everyone else says!"

"So what? You can give me powers temporarily! Let me go for a test run and see what it's like! You were just asking the other day what I wanted for my birthday!" I countered.

"But in the end you'd lose them! Unless you had power permanently you wouldn't understand the great responsibility a superhero has to deal with!"

"Then give them to me permanently!" I shouted.

"Carter as your friend you know I can't do that!"

There was an awkward silence after that, and we didn't look at each other for a while, but slowly we started laughing.

"Man! The things we argue about!" laughed Thoth.

"Yeah," I said, but secretly I felt a little resentment that Thoth hadn't given me powers then and there.

The reason we were at Albertsons was that my bank had a branch inside the store, and I need to make deposit to my account. We couldn't have been in line for the ATM for more than a few minutes when that funny feeling came true. Into the store burst a small battalion of men dressed in the uniforms of Confederate Civil War soldiers, and leading them was none other than General Lee and Stonewall Jackson, two of the many supervillains the frequent Shreveport.

"Don't nobody move! This here's a robbery! Now if y'all cooperate and give us all y'alls money, ain't nobody gonna get hurt!" shouted General Lee as he and his men brandished their guns.

"Okay seriously, this guy is not helping those stereotypes about southerners being stupid, incapable of using correct grammar, and being trigger happy," I muttered.

"And seriously, robbing a grocery store? Man, these supervillains are getting desperate!" exclaimed Thoth.

WE quickly made our way to the bathroom so that Thoth could change into his superhero identity; I flushed all the toilets, turned on all the sinks, and the hand dryers too for good measure so that Thoth could utter the incantation to change into his superhero identity.

"By the power of Ra! I am the Astonishing Thoth!"

There was a flash of light, and I knew Thoth had teleported to the scene of the crime, and I poked my head out the door to get a better look at the action. In his superhero form Thoth wears leather sandals, an Egyptian kilt, a dark blue cloak with gold hieroglyphics embroidered on it, and carries a carved ivory wand and a spell staff.

"General Lee, what's this I hear about you trying to rob this store?" asked Thoth, with all his usual flair.

"Well Mr. Thoth, I found myself low on cash, and the sign said come on in!" said General Lee, completely composed.

"Didn't anyone tell you, stealing is against the law! Perhaps a spell will teach you a lesson!"

Boom! Before Thoth could even utter the first word of the spell, General Lee's soldiers shot thick smoke out of their guns that quickly filled the air! Okay, maybe this guys was smarter than I'd given him credit for; he obviously realized the Thoth need to be able to speak or write in order for his spells to work (and of the two, spoken spells were more powerful), and that smoke would definitely get in the way of that. The smoke was growing so thick it was getting harder to breath, and I could barely see my hand in front of my face.

Just when things seemed particularly desperate, the smoke cleared away like it was being blow by a great whirlwind, and I soon saw why. Spinning her spear at superspeed like a giant propeller was the Amazing Athena; in her superhero form Athena wears leather sandals, a short chiton (but not too short mind you), golden Greek battle armor, carries a spear and the famed shield aegis, and her jet-black hair turns golden blonde.

"Missy you done came to the wrong place! This here ain't no place for a girl!" snorted General Lee (who as you might have guessed, has the views of someone for the 19th century).

"There was a little something called the women's rights movement, ring any Antebellums?" spat Athena.

"That's really cute right there, but in the Confederacy we don't hit little girls!"

"You can drop the chivalry bullshit pal, because the South lost the Civil War, just like you're gonna lose this battle! Observe."

Athena tossed her aegis like an expert discus thrower, and one by one General Lee's men began to drop like dominos, that is, until Stonewall Jackson grabbed the shield. Unlike the rest of General Lee's Sons of the Confederacy, Stonewall Jackson actually has superpowers, which in his case is superstrength that he acquired (illegally, I might add) from an experimental muscle growth stimulator; the guy is completely ripped (and quite frequently he does rip his shirts), pure solid muscle on every inch of him.

Stonewall Jackson tried his best to bend the shield, but being made of Olympian metal it refused to budge; eventually Stonewall gave up on the shield and tossed it aside, focusing his attention completely on Athena. Now it was Athena's turn to be in trouble, unless she got her shield back in less than sixty seconds she'd turn back into Mia Pallas and be completely powerless, not to mention her secret identity would be compromised. I couldn't see Thoth anywhere, and Athena had her hands full with Stonewall as it was; my decision was spur of the moment, but Athena needed me.

I ran with all my might to where Stonewall Jackson had thrown the shield; so far so good, I'd made it to the shield and not be noticed, but now for the tricky part.

"Athena! Catch!" I shouted as I threw the shield for all I was worth.

I had done it! The shield brushed the tips of Athena's fingers…and got knocked out of the way by Stonewall. Damn, so close!

Stonewall now turned his full fury in my direction. "Stonewall Jackson crush tiny boy, just like original Stonewall Jackson crush Union forces!"

As the hunk of muscle charged towards me I braced myself for the worst, only to find a glowing force-field had formed around me.

"So, fighting superhero getting dull and you decided to attack everyday heroes? Choice career path Stonewall," said Thoth sarcastically as he floated just out of Stonewall's grasp.

"Come back birdy man! Fight Stonewall Jackson like a real birdy man!"

"Oh, that's interesting. I've just read your mind Stonewall, and I know your true weakness!"

Thoth raised his staff and suddenly several boxes of cookies, candy, bottles of soda, and bags of candy flew off the self.

"Now I'll give you what you want!" declared Thoth.

"Diabetes?" asked Athena.

"No, but very close. I've discovered that Stonewall Jackson is a diabetic, and he's about to get a sugar high.

At Thoth's command the sugary treats went kamikaze and dove into Stonewall's mouth; at first Stonewall actually seemed to enjoy this, but then his insulin levels gave out.

"Stonewall Jackson can't stop…eating…sugar!"

"You've been a bad boy Johnny, and you're gonna pay for it!" said Athena.

"Only mommy calls me Johnny, and you're not mommy!"

"Why don't you be a good boy and take a little nap?"

"Mommy I don't want to go to school today, I… I feel sleepy."

And with the Stonewall Jackson collapsed to the floor, in what had to be the biggest sugar comma in history. Now all that was left was to take care of General Lee, and he wasn't going anywhere.

"So the way I see we have two options: you can surrender now and the police can come and get you, or…no, we only have one option," said Thoth, with his staff pointed at General Lee.

"The South shall rise again!" shouted General Lee, but when he tried to fire his gun nothing happened.

"Oh yeah, I also neutralized all your weapons."

"So, how bout that surrender."

It wasn't long before the police arrived on the scene and General Lee accepted full terms of surrender; Lee and the Son of the Confederacy were taken to regular prison, since they're just guys in costumes without powers, and Stonewall Jackson was taken to the Caligari Institution for Supervillains (because let's face it, regular prisons are as fit to take on supervillains as a cardboard box). Naturally a superhero battle draws the attention of the press, and a battle involving two heroes even more so; it was the typical deal, Thoth and Athena posed for some pictures, took questions, signed autographs, and slipped away before anyone got too good of a look at them. Athena turned her aegis back into a hairclip and met Thoth and I in the parking lot after Thoth transformed into Alistair Haddo in my car.

"What the Hades were you thinking!" exclaimed Athena as she wacked me with one of her books.

"I keep your cover blown and this is the thanks I get?"

"That was really risky Carter! If Thoth hadn't thrown up the force-field…"

"You could have taken him easy!" I objected.

Athena sighed. "All I'm saying is you might hang out with superheroes, but you're still just a civilian, and you're my friend. If I let something happen to you on either charge I'd never be able to live with myself."

"Uh, Mia, I think the police are taking your bike," said Thoth.

"Hey! That's my bike!" shouted Athena as she rushed after the police.

"It's crime scene evidence, standard procedure. Just fill out this form and we'll have it back to you ASAP," said one of the police officers.

Athena took the form and sighed as I jangled my car keys.

"So, need a ride home?"

"What would I do without you?" said Athena as she gave a weak smile.

Thoth moved to the back so that Athena could ride shotgun, and it wasn't really that eventful until we turned at the light, because not long after we turned I slammed the brakes; standing in the middle of the road were a robot with a humanoid shape, but all its parts were round and the antenna on the sides of its head looked like elf ears. Standing next to the robot was a girl with pink skin, golden hair, large butterfly-esque wings, vampire-like fangs, and emerald green eyes. We all knew who they were, Venusian Girl and her robot sidekick Tin Man, but seeing them about so casually surprised us more than a bit.

Now for a bit about Venusian Girl and Tin Man; as her name suggest, Venusian girl is from the planet Venus. See, though it is quite a hostile world, and by no means a picnic for its natives, it does in fact had intelligent life beneath those clouds of sulfuric acids, and given how few probes have been to Venus, this isn't exactly the surprising. Long ago the Venusians had a civilization not too dissimilar to our own, but due to bad decision, such as utilizing volcanos as a power source and not accessing their environmental impact until it was much too late (coupled with the sun's expansion, for they are quite an ancient people), Venus turned into the volcanic, sulfuric acid saturated, greenhouse affect run amuck, pressure-enough-to-crush-a-submarine hellhole we know it as today.

Fortunately, the Venusians were able to adapt themselves to their new environment, but at a great cost; crops were failing, more and more people were dying each year, more cites had to have domes build over them, and more people were forced underground. To combat these crises, some Venusian scientist proposed going into space, but the atmospheric pressure made that kind of difficult; eventually Venusian Girl's parents, both leading scientist, devised a plan to see if moving to Earth would be possible, but they were only able to get a small rocket build because of budget cuts from Venusian politicians who preferred to pretend nothing was wrong with Venus. Venusian Girl (civilian name Sophie Ishtar, real name unknown at present), was quick to volunteer for the mission, knowing she could easily make it as a superhero on Earth with her natural (and that's using the term somewhat loosely, as it unclear how much Venusians have genetically engineered themselves) Venusian abilities; to get around her otherworldly appearance, Venusian Girl used a hologram projector, and her parents instead she take Tin Man (civilian name Naxos Ishtar) with her to keep her safe.

So as I was saying, we were driving around when we encountered Venusian Girl and Tin Man walking in the middle of the street, completely casually, and with not supervillains anywhere to be seen.

"Hey guys! So how was your…" but before Venusian Girl even had a chance to finished, Thoth cast a spell that pull both her and Tin Man into the car.

"Are you just asking for trouble?" said Athena.

"Not really, we were just going for a fly since it is a lovely day, and we swooped down when we saw you guys," said Venusian Girl.

"We've been over this, if you're not on patrol then you'll just attract supervillains with inferiority complexes!"

"I like to think that would be doing a favor to those heroes looking for action some action," said Tin Man.

"Well what about the civilians, how do you think that makes them feel?"

"It always makes my day when I get to see superheroes, in action or just flying around," I said.

"You don't count!" said Athena.

"I don't see why, after all he is a civilian," said Thoth.

"Are you with me or against me?"

"I'm just stating the obvious, as Carter lacks powers and therefore is a civilian."

"Batman doesn't have powers, but he's a hero," I said.

"Well that depends on how you define hero, plus being crazy prepared and having an ass load of cash could count if you squint."

"I give up! Let's just head to HQ and get an official opinion!" said Athena.

I rerouted our course to take us downtown, after passing row after row of skyscrapers we came to the building we were searching for; it looked like any other museum of superheroes, shiny, modern, full of old memorabilia, but this one also had a secret to it. As was customary, everyone got into costume before entering, so as to not compromise their secret identities , and we saw Stan and Jack at the front desk to get the special key. We inserted the key into the special slot in the elevator, and held on tight as it rocked downward and swayed from side to side; eventually the demented elevator ride was over and we step in Superhero HQ, Shreveport branch.

So what did you think? Be sure to leave a comment telling me your thoughts, and I'll see you soon! =)