This chapter was beta'd by SomeoneCrazy back at QQ Forum.

Chapter 5

"What are you doing?"

Aisha Laborn's incredulous tone came from the door of her room, where she could overlook the rest of the living room and kitchen island of the apartment.

I was momentarily taken back by seeing her, both because of how early it was, and by the way she was dressed.

How old is she again? Twelve? Thirteen? No thirteen-years-old should have curves like that, and that skimpy getup didn't hide any of them..

The mature part of me was wondering how she wasn't freezing under the cold end of winter weather that prevailed in the apartment due to a dying heating system. The teenager part of me was appreciating the view.

This is gonna need some getting used to. I can't remember the last time I found teenage girls sexually attractive.

"Breakfast," I answered after a few moments. Luckily my pause went unnoticed because the girl was also taken back by seeing me, albeit for a different reason. I don't think she is used to seeing men wearing a puffy apron, or cooking for that matter.

"What-" She cut herself, blinking as I moved the pan of fried bacon to join the eggs and toast on the plates. "Where did you get this?" She blurted.

A signal that she was aware of the state of the refrigerator prior to my arrival. One that I had become familiar with when I woke at the crack of dawn, realized that I didn't need to sleep as much as before, and promptly remedied after a quick (a very,very quick I noticed) flight to a grocery shop, with my Stranger power turned on maximum. Because I have money, could fly, and have a desire to be nice to the woman who I spent the night fucking the brains out of, and her family.

"I bought it." I didn't exactly fill the refrigerator, but it wasn't a sad sight as it was before. "Do you want some?"

Aisha blinked again and seemed to finally register my question, but instead of digging in like a hungry teenager she was, her face crumpled in a frown and she glared at me with quite a bit of suspicion.

"No." She shot harshly, moving to the refrigerator.

"You're sure?" I asked, watching her pause at the content inside, before pulling out a half-full bottle of milk.

"I don't want anything from you." She snarled.

Okay, she doesn't trust me, I get it, but she could be a little nicer about it.

I decided to give her space and moved to make the second plate, as I knew that Celia at least would appreciate it. The bacon barely finished hitting the pan when Aisha raised her voice again.

"You haven't bought any cereal." She said in an accusatory tone while holding an empty cereal box.

Didn't she just said she didn't want anything from me!?

"Sorry, I didn't check the cupboards, it was a spur-of-the-moment thing after I saw the refrigerator."

Her frown deepened, and she tsked annoyingly. "Whatever." She grumped, going back to her room and coming out with a heavy-looking backpack. "I'm leaving for school, tell my mom that I see her next weekend and that she doesn't need to pick me up."

"Wait," I called as she moved to the door.

"What!" she snapped, her body tensing. She turned to look at me with anger in her eyes, her suspicion melting away to hostility.

I didn't let it bother me; instead, I kept my voice calm and non-confrontational. "You forgot something," I said, pointing to the math book and notebook laying open on the small table of the living room, the one between the television and the couch.

Aisha looked at it for a moment, before deflating in the way a person does when their anger finds no target, "Oh." She let out before her expression became guarded again. "I was going to get that!" She stutters cutely.

"Sure you were." I smiled, and she turned away with a huff and an embarrassed blush, moving to collect the objects.

"You almost did it," I commented after she closed her bag.


"The calculus, you got really close," It was a lie, she was way beyond the mark, but I could see the effort she put into it by the number of faded scribbles around the papers.

That made her pause, "I got close." She repeated slowly, looking at me like I was crazy. "You're joking." She said incredulously.

"No, I believe you can do it," I said putting the food on the second plate. Before raising my eyes to meet her disbelieving ones. "Aren't you hungry," I asked after her attention dropped to the tasty looking food again. "Why don't you sit down and eat and we go through the assignment together, there's still time." It honestly surprised me to see her up so early; she didn't see to be the type.

"I…" She began uncertainty, looking at me without any hostility or suspicion for the first time. "I think…"

There was a violent crash and a long groan from the only other room. Another crash followed it, this time a dull sounded one, and a moan of frustration.

Yep, looks like the other occupant is awake, rather early too, so either its normal for them, which I really think it isn't the case, or it's my fault.

It's probably my fault, Celia's body must need less sleep than before, but heaven knows how her body really works now, I only had time to stabilize everything and making sure she wasn't going to die by severe chemical reaction. I would need a full examination if I wanted to know the full extent of the changes.

I turned to address Aisha again, seeing only the front door closing, and tried not to sigh as I heard the footsteps walking away.

It was better this way. She would have many questions if she saw her mother's new looks without the cover of darkness and sleepiness, but still, I'd like to have made a better impression, she was a central character of the story after all.

I lost my battle against the sigh and went to get Celia.

She was, unsurprisingly, spread out on the floor; the light from the doorway showed me the cracked nightstand and the smashed alarm clock. I momentarily focused on the remains of the alarm clock, taking in her display of strength and wondering why she had an alarm clock in the first place. Then, I focused on the figure on the floor.

The tight black dress had finally given up trying to hold her new curves and was settled on her midriff, the lower part barely covering half of her ass. Both her breasts had popped out of their confinement, showing the world a pair of chocolate colored mountains with darker peaks. Her hair was a silky mess that shot in every direction, partially hiding a pretty, feminine face drooling beneath.

"Celia," I called; her body reacted to my voice immediately. The hardening of the dark tips, in particular, brought me immense satisfaction. "Its time to wake up."

"Hummmm." She moans attractively while stretching her limbs with slow drawn out movements. "M' wake." She mumbled, her leg curling to her sides and her back arched like a cat, making her spine let out satisfying pops.

I became entranced by the voluptuous rear moving with slow movements near me, and I don't think she even noticed the how sensually she was acting. She was too out of it to notice.

"How are you feeling?" I couldn't help but ask.

"Sore." She moaned the answer, her eyes fluttering open, "And… floaty…it feels fucking awesome,"

"Is that so." I clucked.

"Yeah." She popped her lips while sitting down on her rump, looking more aware each second "I have-" Then, she blinked, her eyes widen, and she jumps to her feet's, startling me in the process. "Aisha! Breakfast! I have-" Her foot got caught in the bed sheet, and she fell.

Or would have, if I hasn't caught her with an arm beneath her ribs, drawing her to a warm embrace.

"Aisha left to school already," I informed, her body unconsciously leaning on me as I steadied her.

"Oh." She breathed out. "She left already…" She muttered crestfallen, before blinking and seeming to notice our position. "Err-" she turned her face to me and stopped.

It was hard, but the shock fell away, and she began putting the pieces together.

"…Danny?" She asked uncertainly.

I grinned in response; the resulting blush made my grin widen.

"Yesterday…" Her breathing spiked with the memories. The blush becomes more prominent, "We…" She licked her lips working on the words for a few moments. "We fucked." She finally breathes out, confirming the fact to herself,

"That." I rasped out, the sound making her shiver. "Is an understatement."


Let it be said: Winslow High is not a shithole.

It does not have a pristine building like Arcadia High, but it's not run down either. It manages to stay relatively clean for a place where hundred of teenager wander about everyday, the graffiti usually stay isolated to the bathrooms, and in the few instances it doesn't, it's quickly hidden under a fresh layer of paint. The equipment available is old and out of date, but there is nothing lacking for the purpose of the lessons, the teachers are qualified and experienced, and the school's teams do have some notoriety over the sports circles, in particular, the track team.

It does not have a gang problem. Well, no more than normal for a school for a city like Brockton Bay. There are always kids spotting gangs colors, the ones that huddle together on their respective ethnic groups and glare at those who are from a different one, but they were almost never part of the gang of whom color they're spotting, or at least not a full member. They were usually sympathizers, or member of a smaller, junior gang that have affiliations, or hope to have affiliations, to the big ones. They're not as in your face as they could have been, as the recruitment and business are made in hidden places. They do fight once in a while, but it's really rare for someone to escalate things while in school, the most violent clashes happen in the streets surrounding the school, where it not its problem.

In summary, Winslow High is not a bad school. Hell, it could even be considered a good school by the standard of the city, but I understand why it feels like a shithole to a bullied narrator surrounded by a staff that turns blind eyes the bullies' actions. Looking back I don't think Taylor ever mentioned anything about the gang problem; I get it that she was preoccupied with more immediate things, but still. Or perhaps she did, and I don't remember the details.

I made my way through the sea of teenagers to my locker, moving completely unnoticed of course. I've been using this opportunity to play around with my Stranger power, testing what I could make unnoticed and seeing the influence of the intensity of the power in the things I wanted to hide. So far, I was fairly certain that I made the changes of my appearance unnoticed, not my appearance itself but the fact that it changed, even someone that knows me with finds my appearance today completely normal…Probably.

That is, if I had someone that knew me, Danny Fenton did not have friends; he had acquaintances that talk to him from time to time. Yes, talk to him, he was never the one to initiate anything, because of that I do not believe that anyone would find my new appearance to be weird, except maybe for a teacher, but I already planned to up my power during classes just to be sure.

I reached my locker and leaned my back on it, watching the students pass completely unaware of my presence.

Today is going to be my last day of school. I have better things to do than stay here for the better part of my day, the only reason I came today was… Well, I always wanted to attend an American high school, mostly to see what the movies and series see in it. And I'm also currently feeling immense catharsis by experience Danny Fenton's shitty life as the new me, my new perspective and power made things that once filled me with dread seem so harmless and silly now.

Of course, there is also another reason I came. It can't be all fun and games, after all, there is a nearly omnipotent space whale that needs killing, and for that, I need to test my Power.

My core Power with capital 'P' the 'Power Manipulator'.

With a deep breath, I release the hold on the 'non-real space' allowing it to expend back to its regular city block size. Immediately, two alien forms made an impression on the paradimention, its light clearly distinct from the ones given by the five dancing Charges.

I lay my metaphorical eyes on them-


W-What the fuck it that.

Fucking hell!

I can't even…

That is a Shard?

A fucking cell of the things I want to challenge?

I can feel it, I can't understand it, and I don't think I ever could, but I can feel the vastness of the Shards. The non-real space was casually transmitting everything there is to know about it directly to my mind, and all that knowledge immediately fade away due to my mind being incapable of absorbing it.

I only got a few things, the names; Queen Administrators and Escapist, The fact that they limited themselves to fit its hosts and the possibilities they represent.

Power manipulator didn't care about my freak out; it had the immense Lovecraftian cell that we call a Shard under its complete control. The space showed me what it could do to it, show me that it could nullify, enhance, modified, copy, even steal the shard from it host, all of that were viable options. It didn't even need Chargers to do it… But then again why it would, the Shard's own innate energy was more than enough to serve that role, all Shards have the potential to become its own entity after all.

The fact it could do all of that, but it can't do anything without my direction bought me comfort.


My power goes beyond the Shard, even if I'm a mere human, and the thing that let out the shard is… what it is. There is still a chance.

This was a wake-up call, I didn't expect the thing to be that overpowered, but nothing really has changed, I still have time, three years minimal and thirty years if I play my cards right. I can reach their level.

But first…

It was as if a bonfire cast a shadow, and the shadow suddenly grew into another bonfire. Two new powers carved themselves into the walls of my soul, a complete shardless copies of the real ones, carrying all the aspects of the originals.

Properly suppressed, of course, I remember Taylor commenting something about sensorial overdose in the narrative, and I didn't want to slip past the walls or something by activating the Escapist without training.

These power need to be tested in a controlled environment, not a high school.

Then, I opened my eyes.

Just in time for a student to trip over my spread legs and fall on his face with a crash, causing the nearby students to laugh their ass off.

…I'm on the floor with my back still on the lockers, must have fallen by the shock, luckily, my Power kept me hidden.

I got back to my feet, and move to get my books, trying to tear my mind away from the scale of my enemy. I wouldn't do me good thinking about it before the time.

And just as I needed a distraction, distraction appeared. It didn't take long; actually, one second I was closing my locket, and another the neighbor's locket was opening, and the giggles reached my ears.


I couldn't be.

The universe couldn't be this ironic.

But it was…

And once again I was met with a surprising 'Worm character at close proximity situation', But at least this one wasn't nearly as important as Taylor Herbert, or even Aisha Laborn for that matter.

In fact, I don't think she is important at all, but she provided… opportunities.

Enough opportunities for me to act because frankly, I had nothing to lose.

"Damn," I said; lowering my power and letting my voice draw out. "All this time and I had such a beautiful neighbor, perhaps this 'arriving on time' thing in on to something."

I could only wish I was this daring the first time I was a teenager. I suppose I got to make up for lost time now.

The two girls stopped their giggly conversation and turned to me. I kept my eyes on the owner of the locker to make it clear who I was talking to, the other girl hasn't a red-haired or black skinned, so she didn't interest me.

Both pairs of eyes trailed over my form, and I apparently passed some ancient schoolgirl test because their eyes sparkled and they opened a smile instead of calling me a creep and walk away.

"Why thank you!" Giggled the owner of the locker, sky blue eyes flustering cutely, "I also can't believe I never noticed you before!"

"Well, I say we rectify this mistake." I let my eyes be drawn by the ways her clothes emphasize the modest but attractive curves before offering my hand. "Danny Fenton."

Her smile spread, and soon slender fingers with long pink nails coiled over my own. "Madison Clements."

I bowed; bring her hand to my mouth and leaving an old fashionable kiss in it. My unexpected actions brought a sincere blush to the petite girl.


And suddenly, going to school didn't sound such a waste of time anymore.


"I swear it Mr. G is just sooo lame sometimes. Did you see him trying to act all cool because he got a new phone? Lameee."

"Yeah, the man got some confidence issues, that's for sure, but at least he is cool about homework."

"At least that! Still, he can benefit from shutting his mouth once and a while, this way he wouldn't sound so desperate."

Madison Clements is a teenager.

And I'm mean that with every sense of the word, she is loud, arrogant, proud, has a personality deeply rooted in her 'popular girl' cliché, with an extra dose meanness that probably came from the people she hangs out with. She loves to gossip, watch television dramas, and talk shit about other people. And yes, she cultivated a cutesy attitude that permeated her every action.

She's also witty, genuinely funny sometimes, could keep up a flirty conversation like a champ.

With the wisdom from a lifetime of dealing with people, it was easy to see that she hasn't a perverse girl who take joy in messing with others; she is a dumb kid doing dumb things that would probably look back with regret in the future. I bet that many, if not most of her bad habits came from the company she keeps, it's incredible how a person can change to fit the crowd around her.

She is also pretty hot, that definitely helps me see her in a better light.

We didn't spend the entire morning making up passionately in the corner, but she was just as interested as I was in knowing each other better, so we joined hips at every chance we got, sitting near each other at every class we shared and chatting through most of them.

That made me mingle with the 'popular crowd', which unfortunately weren't the undisputed ruler of the school like the movies told me, but were a group of generally attractive teens that everyone seems to look up to for some reason.

I caught a glance of Taylor Herbert on some of the classes, she was not unattractive, but she was definably passing through an awkward phase, I didn't talk to her or even approach her, but I kept Madison occupied to the point where she didn't seek her victim even once, so I'd like to think I helped a little.

"But at least, education is over, for now, so let me walk you over to the lunch?" I said offering my arm.

Madison giggled and quickly took it. I found that she liked these old-school gestures, so I wasn't ashamed to use it to my full advantage. "Let's go." She exclaimed brightly, "I have to introduce you to the others!"

Yes. Having met her circle of friends I have a good idea of the 'others,' I hadn't met.

Emma Barnes and Sophia Hess, arguably the hottest girl in the school and her similarly hot Ward friend.

Together with Madison, they make for the trio of bullies who were making Taylor Herbert's school life a living hell.

I wonder how much they will change once I make them mine.

"Hey, Danny." A voice called from behind us, utterly surprising me, "We have to talk."

It was a Boy, fat, but with a layer of muscle beneath, wearing greasy clothes and torn jeans, his hair was cut short, and his blue eyes were fixed on me.

"Do you know this creep, Danny?" Madison asked, tilting her head in a cute display of confusion.

The guy frowned from Madison's offhanded insult and opened his mouth to insult back, but I was quick to cut him off.

"I do," I said, loud enough to cut his colorful commentary. "Unfortunately." I added quiet enough for only Madison to hear, "What do you want, Ian?"

Ian Gregory was one of the 'acquaintances' that Danny Fento- that I used to have, we weren't friendly, but we weren't hostile either, the only reason we interact as because of our background.

Ian is the leader of the junior Merchants faction of Winslow High. Drugs, recruitment, news, he has his hand on everything related to the Merchants on the school.

He used to do me favors once, so that I would put a good word for my father, but he stopped once he realized that my word means nothing to Jack, and began to do favors for the man directly.

Now, what a mini-Merchant with ties to my father wants with me.

"We need to talk." He looked at Madison. "Alone."

"Rude." The girl huffed, "Come on, Danny we don't have to listen to creeps like him."

"Hold on Mads," I said softly, raise my voice. "Is this a Family matter?"

Ian's eyes bore into mine, "Yeah." He said slowly. "You can say it's a family matter."

…Dear Father remembers my stunt yesterday, doesn't he? Fuck, I did not erase it from his mind. I literally forget about him while I fucked his girlfriend.

Troublesome… but worth it.

"Well, fuck." I turn to the girl holding my arm. "I have to go; my Father needs me."

I could practically see her reaching her own conclusions.

"Your Father? Why wasn't he called you? Or the school, for that matter?"

"Because my phone is broken, and he doesn't trust the education system." I lie smoothly, "Ian here works part-time on my father's business. He believes that he is a more trustworthy way to reach me, isn't that right Ian?"

"…Yeah, it's basically like that."

Gee, he could have at least try to sound convincing.

Luckily, Madison seems to have believed in the excuse.

"So you get to bail the afternoon classes with your family permission, luckyyy." She singsonged with a smile.

"Yeah, provided that it isn't anything grave, but I don't believe so. The old man is probably overreacting again." I send her a boyish smile. "So, talk to you tomorrow then?"

Her eyes glimmer. "Definitely."

After that she continued on her way to the cafeteria, leaving me alone with Ian in the corridor.

"Your girl?" Ian commented in a suggestive tone.

"Maybe in the future," I responded.

He opened an ugly smile, "I'll remember her."

Pulling a calming breath, I turned to lock glares with him, "Yes, and make sure you remember whom she will belong to."

He was taken back a little by my challenge, and I truly expect him to initiate violence, but he just frowns and turned back. "Come on fucker. You're being called."

Well then, time properly deal with my Father.


Maybe the world is trying to tell me something by putting me in this situation. I can even imagine; Danny, you fucking idiot, just because you have absolute power now doesn't mean the world will move in accordance to your wishes, you better step up your game, or I'll keep throwing curveballs at you!

Needless to say, I wasn't brought to a private place where father and his friends would teach me a lesson as I had imagined; instead, I was brought somewhere far worse.

"HAH, So you are the little cumstain that fucked up Jack's face. Danny right? By the way, he talked about you I thought you would be a little femboi!"

I hadn't thought that dear father would be high enough in the merchant to be known by Skidmark by name. Fucking hell! Good-bye doing things in a subtle way, now I had the attention of one of the biggest gangs in the city.

Is this the Worm's escalation curse? It must be the Worm's escalation curse. I guess I should expect an Endbringer by the end of the week.

I was brought to a rundown warehouse at the shittiest part of the Docks, right outside the Trainyard. It was the kind of place that the merchants 'claimed' as part of their territory, but in truth was a leftover shithole that none of the other gangs really wanted.

I came without any struggle, again; expecting to find my father and his crew and finish bashing their faces in, but instead, I found myself face to face with the most prominent members of the gang, including its three parahuman leadership, all of whom were enjoying a mid-day crack party.

Dear father is also here. He is in the corner sending me death glares with the one eye that is visible from the bandages.

"So imagine my surprise when big Jack here, came to me with his tail between his legs begging for help to teach you a lesson, even though he was complaining how much weak ass his faggot son was just last week! The same faggot weak ass son that apparently disintegrated his fucking face with a punch. That got me curious, so kid…" The villain sat back on the couch behind him. His girlfriend immediately lay on his arm. "Got powers?"

I take the room again for a few moments. Like I said; look like a crack party from hell, the amount of profanity crammed in one place was actually impressive. All around us were merchants with rubber bands of similar color to my father's, showing their position in the hierarchy. There was a lot of women too, the kind of women that usually frequented these kinds of party, amazingly, most of them were actually pretty, like they were carefully selected for being here today. An insane amount of Drugs and alcohol littered the room, in a greater variety than my father's usual parties, it felt like all the drugs known to man were in this room at the exact same moment.

The capes were also there; Mush was drinking on a table in the corner, he didn't bother wearing his mask because, like all Merchant capes, he was nobody beneath it, the mask is just to throw the hero and the police off. Squealer was also unmasked; in fact, the only piece of clothing she was wearing was tiny jeans short that could barely be considered as clothing, she was pressing her boyfriend arms between her B-rated pornstar fake breasts, with a stoned look on her eyes. Skidmark was the only one that was in full costume, with his blue mask covering the top of his face, leaving his rotten smile in full view. He seems pretty smug when he saw me looking around like he was proud of the party he put together.

And the carpet lets not forget the carpet. I don't think I was supposed to notice the glow beneath, and that the glow seems to make a circle around me, making a barrier between me and the other people in the room.

I didn't show any sign that I had noticed of course. Why ruin the surprise they so kindly prepared for me.

"…It wasn't a punch; I grazed him. If it was a punch, his head would have exploded." I remarked, trying to think where do I go from there.

My response sends Skidmark crackling.

"HAHA, that's rich! Do you hear that guys! Hey Mush! Did you hear that!?" He shouted to the sullen looking man, getting a grumble in response. "The big bad Brute is going through his invincible phase, adorable!"

He subdues his laughter. Meeting my eyes with a fierceness that I wouldn't expect for a man like him.

"All right kid, here is the deal. You're a cape now, that's good, that fucking incredible right? The feeling of having power, of standing out from all the everyday fuckers, of not having to take shit from anybody anymore, its fucking addictive. Trusts me I know." He laughs at his own joke. "And with you Brutes it's even worse, maybe is because you're harder to hurt, I don't fucking know. The thing is, you're aren't invincible, just because you got a bit of power and the world now feel like your bitch does not mean it is. Sooner or later you will learn that world can still brutally rape your ass if you give it the opportunity, and new baby capes, they hand opportunities like flies."

I already know where this is going; bringing me to a full merchant party, showing me the best looking merchant girls, showing me the drugs and money they were spending, it was pretty obvious what this is.

"And what you suggest I do?" I asked, going along with it.

"What do you think? Get friends of course! You need someone to watch your back kid. It's a fucking dangerous city we live, we got to stay together if we want to survive." He showed me his rotten teeth again. "And luckily for you, you already have a crew that you can join in. Hell, it's practically a family business! Isn't it Jack!" he shouts to my Father. The man left out a muffled grumble and looked really to kill someone, but he stayed where he was.

"So Danny, the Merchants have a shiny spot with your name on it, you will get protection for the other fuckers that try to mess with you, all drug and money you could ask for." He snaked his hand below and roughly grabbed one of Squealer tits, making the woman let out one of her namesake. "All the pussy you could want too, I know that you're in that age. Pretty sweet deal if I say so myself, but what do you say." He hasn't framed that like a question that has more than one answer; I could hear the threat his voice carried.

…I was expecting the recruitment pinch, everything was shaping to be one, what I wasn't expecting was how much it pissed me off.

It was weird, I don't care about the Merchants, I don't really care about any gang really, right now my only plan for the future is having fun, maybe sexy fun after my time with Celia yesterday, but this guy has been rubbing me the wrong way ever since I see him. No, everything about this,about the Merchants, was rubbing me in the wrong way, and the more I saw of this gang the worst it got.

I couldn't put into word why I felt that way; I really couldn't, until I opened my mouth, and the words came. The ideas just fell together in a neat picture, and I knew exactly what to say.


"Eh, fuck no."

Skidmark was prepared for that. He couldn't not be prepared for a refusal, for the time where he would need to retreat the carrot and show the stick, for the time where he would have to show the new kid who exactly he was dealing with. But the way he said it, such casual hostility, made him pause.

The kid continued calmly.

"I get the recruitment talk, I really do. A new brute just got in town! Those are always useful right? Better grab him before anyone else does. But really, did you forget who you are? How you represent? You are Skidmark; you guys are the Merchants. You can't be called shit because that would be an insult to shit, you are the people that the bottom of the barrel look to feel better about themselves. In summary, you are the lowest trash in this town,"

First, came the shock, Skidmark was by no mean unfamiliar with the insults that were being thrown in his way, he had started fights over similar words before, but they never felt this intense before, it was like every insult carried a physical weight, one that grew heavier with each word uttered. And from that weight came the shame, a deep incomprehensible shame that passed through him like a wave of concentrated disappointment, Skidmark had a flash of everyone that has ever made him feel ashamed, their eyes and words intermixed into the ones of the teenager in front of him. Finally came the rage, a burning rage that blazed violently inside of him, a desperate flame trying to quell the shame inside, a familiar flame that so often escaped and lashed out against the world, but now couldn't escape even if he tried.

"And the worst thing its." The teenager's eyes seem to, somehow, look at everyone at the same time. "You aren't supposed to be that."

The shock came back, nearly erasing the rage completely. Skidmark had to struggle against a gasp that almost took the air out of his lungs.

"The two other powered gangs in the city are racially oriented for crying out loud, you do not have that limitation, you can recruit from any race under the rainbow and, in fact, the number show, you have way more members than the other gang in the city but what do you do with all that manpower? You get high! You throw meanness parties and pretend that your territories aren't scraps that nobody wants; you act like a small-time drug dealer even though you have superpowers and manpower. You guys have a vehicle tinker for fuck sake."

Squealer lets out a strangled sound when the teenager's eyes fell over her form, her arms even moved to cover her tits. Skidmark didn't remember the last time she cared about that.

"Because that is what you are in the end, a bunch of junkies and drug dealers that gained superpowers and banded together for protection, you guys don't have plans for the future, don't have any aspirations, don't have any ambition, nothingmatters to you other than your next high, the next party, the next pussy… Which is a shame; no, it's a waste. Because you, as a gang, can be so much more."

Skidmark just now noticed that he stopped breathing; he pulled the air in an attempt to make the world stop shaking. He was feeling things, things that he never felt before, that was so alien that he couldn't even name it, and the terrible sobrietyonly made things worse. Why was he so sober anyway? He thought he took care of that at the start of the day.

"All you need…" The teen blinked as if he just realized something. Then a smile formed, there was something about that smile, something that just drew attention and makes the world surer than it was before. "All you need is someone to show you how, someone to bring out the untapped potential that you guys have, someone to lead you."

It took a few moments for the meaning of the word to truly reach Skidmark, a moment that the words stayed in the air and were absolved by the encapsulated audience. For Skidmark, the words hit him like a storm, they made him feel conflicted and confused for a second, a terrible second that he found himself agreeing with the teenager, the wet behind the ears boy that he tried to recruit, the fucking shitshain that was gunning for his position.

Anger came, both at the boy, and at himself for seeing a glimpse of sense on this bullshit, a sense that did not seem disappear even now, and was gnawing at his thoughts somewhere in the back of his horribly somber mind.

"You little shit." He snarled, low, dangerous, ready to explode. "Trying to overthrown me han? Trying to be the big man and you're not even part of us! I'll show you what happens to fuckheads who don't know their places!" The anger reached its peak. "SHOOT HIM!"

He was shouting to the two members that were behind the boy, two merchants that were carrying something that always gives baby brutes a lesson of reality.

But they didn't shoot; in fact, his shout only seems to break the trance that has fallen over the room.

Skidmark's order trailed for a few seconds while everyone shuffled and mumbled, conflicted. Finally, another voice rose, a voice that put into words into the feeling that permeated the air, the feeling that kept everyone from moving.

"Do…Do you mean it?" The voice came from the corner of the room; it was an unusual sound among the Merchants, a sound that when it came, it was normally at a low, sullen tone. "What you said, do you really believe that?" The tone was so different than the usual, that Skidmark had to double take it to recognize it.

Mush stood from the table where he was sitting; his eyes were shining with tears.

Skidmark saw red.

"ALRIGHT FUCKERS THAT'S IT!" He stood up, taking a gun from the table in front of him, "I SAID SHOOT!" He screamed, pointing to one of the merchants behind the boy.

The merchant was quick to move under the threat of an angry villain with a gun; he raised the PTR stolen equipment to the still sitting brute.

The Tinker tech grenade hit the brute in the back; the impact easily broke the capsule and made the substance inside bust out. Another grenade was quick to follow the first one as the other Merchant followed his friend's lead.

The boy looked curious for a moment before the containment foam covered his form completely.

Skidmark lets out a relieved breath seeing the enemy Brute being contained. His head was beginning to ache as it usually does when he is fucking sober, he would need to rectify this quickly, perhaps with Sherrel sucking his dick, that always gave an extra quick to the high. But first…

He was already throwing his arm when he turned, from it, a shimmer of light not dissimilar to the heated air you saw above a hot road blasted towards Mush and gave a deep blue glow to the floor beneath his feet.

Mush slipped, he fell to the floor and his body was dragged forward as if a strong wind was hitting it. His form began to blur and black tentacles began to stretch from his arms, but he reached the multiplied layered circle that Skidmark has marked early, and he was thrown violently against the contained form in the center.

"YOU!" Skidmark's scream drew a whimper from Mush. "WHAT THE OF KIND OF QUESTION WAS THAT, WHAT ARE YOU PLAY AT FUCKER! DO YOU THINK-"

There was a sound, a cracking sound that sucked all the air from Skidmark's lungs by its sheer Impossibleness.

Then, there was a crack, a physical crack this time, and Skidmark almost pissed himself.

He had only seen that happen once, and that was with a full dragon form Lung when he fought the entire Protectorate team, but then it was from the safety of a television screen, he'd never imagined how terrifying it would be experiencing it in real life.

The hardened containment foam, with was said to be able to hold all but the most powerful brutes explode in a shower of white fragments.

"Yes, I truly believe that." Said Daniel Fenton stepping out of his prison and dropping his gaze with the downed man on his feet, "You can be great." He said to him, and raised his eyes to the rest, "I have decided that I will make you guys great."

There was no doubt. There was no question. They would be great.

Nothing sounded truer than that.

Skidmark shook his head to throw away the feeling again. This was a mutiny, a coup; he was being overthrown from his position. He has to do something. He has to establish dominance.

He tried to raise the gun but in a second Daniel had him by the neck.

"He didn't even slow down," Skidmark thought midst a sea of panic and dread, "Twelve layers of power and he just blast through it-" All the thoughts flared in pain as his wrist was painfully twisted to make him drop the gun.

"You are pathetic Skidmark, just like your gang." The extraordinarily strong brute echoed in a voice that made people sit down and listen, "But guess what…"

Suddenly Skidmark feels the ground beneath his feet again, and the grip on his neck loosed completely. Being replaced by a hand on his shoulder.

His eyes focus again as the wave of panic retreated, meting ocean blue ones that held a scary intensity, eyes like that were impossible to look away from. And to add to the insanity of the day; Skidmark found himself drawing strength from it.

"When I finish with you, and my gang." The following smile prophesied the future; it brought shivers to anyone who saw it. "We'll be a Force of Nature."

Here is a List of Power to keep track of his Bullshit:

-Power: Telekinesis.

Aspects: [First Charge] Matom limited, can affect anything within his field of vision, maximum lifting weight of around 300 kg, can't affect things he can't see (no cellular or molecular stuff). It was made without direct input from Daniel so the charge did what it could with the vague instructions it was given.

1 Charge= Shaker 4.

-Power: Alexandria Package.

Aspect: [First Charge] Borrowed for Glory Girl's power; it's a shield that protects the body and allows super strength and fight, it does not fade away for a few seconds after a good hit like Gory Girl does, but a good hit can overpower it and damage the body. It was made without direct input from Daniel so the Charge did what it could with the vague instructions it was given.

1 Charge= Brute 3 Mover 2

[+1 Charge] Added a 'Perfect health' power, the power will always bring the body to the most 'perfect' state possible with the resources it has (nutrients, mass, ect…), this power give him borderline superhuman traits even without the primary power.

2 Charges= Brute 6 Mover 4

[+1 Charge] Added a Self-Biokinesis power, the power allows him to change his appearance as he wishes, but it can't make complex changes, requiring him to keep a humanoid appearance of the same sex, as it can't create new organs or manipulate the old ones into new ones. It can, however, create mass out of nowhere, but in a limited amount. That caused the Perfect heath power to synergize with it, bringing Daniel's body to an idealized version of itself. Now, his body is beyond human, and it would have received a decent Brute rating even without the shield raising its strength to new levels.

3 Charges= Brute 8 Mover 6 Changer 1 Stranger 1

[+1 Charge] Pure enhancements.

4 Charges= Brute 10 Mover 8 Changer 3 Stranger 1

-Power: The Blank.

Aspect: [First Charge] Makes him invisible to thinker powers not directly aimed at him. For example; he doesn't show up if a precog is reading the future of the city he is in, or of a person that is related to him, but if the precog tried to read his future they would be successful (the precog can still see the results of his actions.)

1 Charge= Stranger 4

-Power: Misdirection.

Aspect: [First Charge] it misleads any thinker power aimed directly at him. A precog would get the wrong future if they tried to read his future, Tattletale would get wrong answers if she tries read his body language, it's even capable of fooling the Path of Victory, but it's not strong enough to do it completely, it only adds a few unnecessary steps or cause the path to suddenly change in unexpected ways (Contessa could still fuck him if she tried, but it would take longer than it normally would). He also has no control of the level of misleads his power throws, it could be a really subtle one that makes the thinker thinks they got it right, or it could be a balls to the wall crazy shit that make it impossible for the Thinker not realize that there is something iffy going on (think Tattletale trying to read him and figuring out that he is a magical princess from another dimension that wants to sell her a pony head)

1 Charge= Stranger 5.

-Power: Perception manipulation.

Aspect: [First Charge] It's basically Imp's power from Worm, it makes him unnoticeable to others to the point where they forget that he was there, the others can still perceive the scent or the sounds he makes, but they have trouble linking the scent and sound to him, someone with a sharp sense would know that something is in the room, but not where it is, he can still be caught on camera. He has to consciously activate the power for it to work, while Imp has to consciously deactivate it to be perceived.

1 Charge= Stranger 5.

[+1 Charge] Pure enchainment: it increased the intensity of disassociation field, now, his scent and sounds will also be forgotten, he can still be caught on camera, but his image will be hard to discern and hard to focus on. He also has more control over the field. Managing to cover his action or single things he wanted to stay unnoticed, for example, he could make people still perceive him, but do not perceive the changes of his body, or having them still perceiving him but not perceiving him stealing for someone pocket. It worth remembering that while he is using the 'selective unperception' the effect is weaker than it would be a full presence unperception, so it's possible for someone to notice the things he is hiding if they try hard enough.

2 Charges= Stranger 7

-Power: Limid Transmutation

Aspect: [First Charge] it allows him to morph any liquid in his body to any kind of chemical imaginable, the chemical are limited to the ones that could have a liquid form, it also protects him from volatile chemicals, and affects the liquid production of his body, making him produce as many liquids as he wants.

1 Charge= Changer 5

[+1 Charge] it not only increased the original power, now allowing for the transmutation of chemicals that do not normally have liquid forms but also added a Tinker power with chemical specialty. This alone made the power reach a new league of strength. He now can transmute his liquids directly into tinkertech substances, skipping the production process entirely because he knows the composition of the result. Some compositions are still too complex or exotic for the primary power to directly transmute, but there is nothing stopping him from transmuting the substances necessary to form it and mix them together to get the previously unreachable result, sometimes he can do this inside his body. It's also worth remembering that he has a resistance to the substance he transmutes, so, ironically, the substances he creates to him can't affect him, even if it's beneficial.

2 Charges= Changer 7, Tinker 10

A/note: it's only that high because of the threat he represents. (Think about it; He is a tinker who can 'build' his tech in a second and doesn't need any equipment to do it, and Tinkers are bullshit)

A/note: its not a power, but as I said: I'm Cyoa text as strictly as I can, plus its fun to put here, so here it goes:

-Power/Perk: Inspiration

Aspect:If the Emperor of Mankind learned talk no jutsu

No Charges= Manster Yes

A/note: If you're wondering, that's what happened to the Merchants in this chapter.