This story follows on clots from the events in my stories "Devils Night" and "A Picture Tells' A Thousand Words". Spoilers for some events in "Kingdom Come", "Jenny Sparks: the secret history of The Authority" and "The Authority: Revolution" story lines, as well as Seasons 4 and 5 of Smallville.
Part 1: Knight in shining Armour
Chloe flicked off the lights as she headed for the door, having finally finished her latest report. Working for an organization like Planetary had its perks, but it tended to cut into her social life somewhat. She wished Clark was around, but he'd taken off for China in search of one of the Stones of Power that his father seemed so insistent on recovering. Narrowing her eyes, she carefully entered the 16 digit alphanumeric code that activated the security system. Most Planetary field offices had security that would rival a nuclear missile silo, but due to the rather unusual nature of several Smallville residents, The Engineer had upgraded the system with advanced technology, some of it non-human in origin.
There were days when her life seemed even stranger than normal.
Stepping out onto the sidewalk, she turned to walk home, but stopped suddenly: some sixth sense told her that she was being watched. A lifetime as a trainee journalist and living in a town inhabited by often homicidal Meteor Freaks had taught her the value of trusting her instincts, and she mentally started to reach out for the nearest sours of electricity, ready to fight or run.
But for the first time since they'd manifested, her powers failed to respond to her mental commands.
Trying not to panic, Chloe reached into her pocket for her phone, but a heavily silenced gunshot rang out, and a hole appeared in the middle of her cell phone the moment it cleared her coat. There was a second, much louder bang, and Chloe felt herself being lifted off the ground and thrown through a shop window, the glass shattering just before she hit it.
"Chloe Sullivan, by the power invested in my by the United Nations Special Security Council, I am placing you under arrest." A voice called out as shadowy figures started to appear outside the shattered window, "Stand down immediately or we will be forced to take further action against you."
"Like what; throw me down the side of the Hoover Dam?" Chloe muttered to herself as she tried to sit back up, "Who the hell are you, anyway?"
"Benito Santini, Team Achilles." One of the strangers answered; levelling a gun at the terrified young woman's head, "Orders say Dead or Alive, and to tell the truth, I don't mind which it is..."
The sound of glass breaking under foot echoed in off the deserted street, followed closely by a bright flash as a single wooden match was lit, illuminating a new face as it lit a cigarette.
"My dear Colonel Santini," Jon stepped forward, apparently un-phased by what had happened, "fancy seeing you here."
"Do I know you?" Santini sneered.
"No; I have to confess that I only know you by reputation, but I already hate you." Jon blow a perfect smoke ring, "Like I know for a fact that the UN pulled your funding a support after they found out just what you were doing to the meta-humans your little team captured. These days you higher yourself out as mercenaries to pay the bills while you try and continue you 'work' as you see it."
"Sic semper tyrannis." Santini drew a second gun and pointed it at the Englishman.
"Thus always to tyrants: State motto of Virginia." Jon took another step forward, "But I feel Kansas did quite well with Ad astra per aspera."
"To the stars through difficulties." Santini cocked both pistols, "You got a point, Limey?"
"How very typical: I was actually born in Metropolis and have duel nationality." Jon flicked away his cigarette, "Go away and never come back to Smallville, ever again."
"And what makes you think I'm going to do what you say?" Santini sneered, but his expression changed in a heartbeat when Jon, moving so fast he seemed to blur, grabbed the end of both guns and held the tightly.
"And your support team is already neutralised. Nothing permanent, but they won't be coming to your aid any time soon." Jon smiled, "Your move."
Time slowed down as Santini pulled the triggers of both guns; the shockwave reverberating out as both bullets accelerated down the barrels and hit Jon's hands. He seemed to flinch slightly as they impacted, but remained standing. Jon's eyes remained locked on Santini as he slowly opened the palm of his right hand, revealing the flattened bullet against his unblemished skin.
"Checkmate." He smiled as time returned to normal.
"Oh my god: you're one of them." Santini snarled, "You're some kind of god damn freak, just like her."
"Now that's no way to address a lady." Jon's eyes narrowed as he dropped the bullet to the floor, "Now get the hell out of town while you still have legs to carry you."
Santini started to back away without saying a word, his two subordinates keeping a close eye on both Jon and Chloe until they disappeared back into the shadows. A few minutes later, the sound of a helicopter powering up its engines and taking off, flying low over the town as it disappeared into the night.
"Holy crap that hurts..." Jon sank to his knees, hands gripping his left abdomen, "Were the hell did he get mystically enhanced bullets from?"
"What?" Chloe asked, getting to her feet and look at her rescuer, "What the hell just happened? Why the hell was that? Who the hell are you?"
"Always with the questions, huh?" Jon smiled weakly, "I always liked that about you."
"What are you talking about?" Chloe stopped suddenly, "What do you mean, mystically enhanced bullets?"
"I'm not sure exactly what type he used, but he'd obviously gotten hold of some bullets that have charms or wards placed upon them: very rare and very, very expensive. Not the sort of thing he'd normally carry to go after a meta-human of your level."
"I have no idea what you're talking about..."
"You're name is Chloe Sullivan, and you are the daughter of Gabriel and Jennifer Sullivan, otherwise known as Jenny Sparks; the Sprit of the 20th Century. You inherited some but not all of your mother's powers after being struck by lightning last year." Jon looked down at the blood that was starting to seep from the wound in his side, "now if you don't mind, I should really do something about this..." he tried to stand, but his legs gave out underneath him, "Ok, this might be a problem."
"I'll call an ambulance." Chloe looked round for a payphone.
"We both know that there is little that Smallville Medical could do for me. I'll be ok; I just need to get out into the street for a moment."
Wrapping an arm around Jon's shoulder, Chloe lifted him to his feet and helped him out into the street. He stood unsteadily on his feet as he pulled back his left sleeve, revealing what looked like a combination watch and personal organiser. He typed in a code so fast that Chloe couldn't follow his finger, and the computer bleeped softly.
"D...Door." Jon whispered, almost collapsing.
Chloe was dumbfounded when a glowing yellow portal appeared out of nowhere, illuminating the darkened street. Jon took a step forward and almost collapsed gain, Chloe only just grabbing him in time.
"Just need to get through..." He whispered softly, "But you can't follow."
"We'll see about that." Chloe muttered, all but dragging the semiconscious young man forward until they stood just before the glowing portal. Then, taking a deep breath, she lunched them both through.
To Be Continued...