A few weeks later again I was out late at night in my armor looking over the edge of a building at the end of an alley. "Why is it always warehouses," I muttered my voice altered by my mask as a moving van and a limo pulled up to what looked like an abandoned building.
As people got out of the limo, I narrowed my eyes as the sensors zoomed in on their faces. "ok we got a Hong Kong Triad smuggler scum bag, a local mobster main hobby prostitution, and…," I muttered as the computer after a face of faces ID each one and I stopped at the last.
"…one undercover FBI Special Agent Bryan White," I muttered as the three moved toward the van and his eyes widened in horror as the back was opened.
"Well let's make sure he succeeds," I growled as the young Asian girls were marched out.
Down near the entrance of the building I lurked in the shadows behind one of the goons on patrol another going in the opposite direction. As they started, crossing each other my hands shot out of the dark grabbed the back of their heads and drove their heads together with a crunch. As they slumped to the ground out cold with blood leaking from head wounds, I slipped inside.
Silently sneaking up behind another goon, I grabbed him one arm going around his neck my opposite hand covering his mouth as I kicked his legs out from under him. When he went, still I let him drop. Then moved on.
From my position in the rafters of a lighted room, I watched as men patrolled around a chainlinked pen where all the young girls were. Glancing over I saw the Triad smuggler, the mobster, and Agent White were gathered in a small lit roofless office. I watched as the three talked and with a snap of the mobster's fingers briefcases were brought forward and when opened to show they were full of money.
When they shook hands, I sank further into the shadows and with a flick of my wrist; a shuriken shot into my hand and threw it. It sailed through the air with a small whistling sound and into the junction box. All eyes turn to it and a second later, a surge went from the shuriken into the box, which exploded, and with sparks, flying the lights went out.
With shouts of alarm and orders being called out, I dropped to the floor night vision coming on as I landed with a roll. Charging forward grabbed the rife of one of the goons and drove into the man's face. Turning I pushed a goon's gun arm aside and dropping down swept his leg out from under him with my opposite arm and off his feet before I drove a hammer fist down onto his gut sending him to the floor hard.
Turning I side kicked another goon hard in the chest before side slipping over another and kicking him in the small of his back after I landed. Spinning I drove my fist into another's head before grabbing two by the face and brought them both to the floor. Leaping forward into the air and after kicking one in the chest spun around and kicked another across the face.
Back on my feet, I grabbed another and after throwing him over my shoulder to the ground broke his arm at the joint over my knee. As he cried turned nailing two in the face with pair of backhands over the shoulder when it happened.
The blast of a shotgun sounded and I dive rolled out of the way for cover as the girls in the cage cowered where they were. Looking at the shooter, I watched him shoot blindly in the dark while his bosses yelled at him. Then my eyes widened as the barrel turned on White.
Darting forward I got in front of him tackling him to the ground just as he fired the shot nailing me in the back. With me laying on top of him, I moaned in pain.
"Pal you ok?" White asked.
"Yeah its bulletproof, still hurts though Agent White," I moaned quietly and he fell silent.
"Maybe one day I'll explain but right now do you have backup?"
"Yeah," he said as I heard the men come closer.
"Don't call them in, until I say," I muttered into his ear before turning and kicked one in the chest.
Rolling forward off him a shuriken shot into my hand and turning I threw it into the gun arm of one of the Triad's guards. As he screamed in pain I rushed forward grabbed the shotgun and after ramming the side of the gun into the man's face swept him to the ground. Using the rifle as leverage broke the man's leg before spinning back around and kicked the Triad member across the face.
Coming down on top of him, I grabbed him by his collar. "I hate slavers!" I growled drawing back my fist.
"Drop it clown!" a voice snapped and turning I saw the mobster hold a gun and flashlight on me.
Smiling the man muttered, "what now hero!" he said.
Smiling behind my mask I answered, "Call in a favor, right Special Agent White?" and the man froze as a gun cocked behind him.
"Right," White said holding his gun on the mobster.
Turning back to the Triad member I muttered, "Now where were we," before I plowed my fist into his face.
Back on my feet, I walked over to the holding cage and the girls shrank further back. "Key!" I snapped turning to face the guy lifting the lock.
He remained silent and rolling my eyes, I turned back and ripped both the lock and the door from the chain link pen. "Come on out you're safe," I said motioning but they remained still as statues.
Slapping a hand to where my forehead would be I moaned, "right probably don't understand a word I said," I muttered.
"No we understand,"
Looking again I saw one of the girls come forward fear on her face. "You're not one of them?" she asked.
I shook my head. "No you have my word of honor," I said holding out my hand.
Looking at it she slowly took another step before slowly taking it and I helped her step through. As she looked at me, the other girls piled out. I held her gaze for a moment then turned looking at White as cuffed the mobster and the still unconscious Triad to a pipe.
"What's going too happened to them?" I asked walking over.
White looked at me before looking at them. "Well we'll take them into custody after we get their statements then more than likely deported," he said.
"Which would get them killed," I muttered looking at them.
"What do you…," he started but stopped when I interrupted.
"These girls probably came from one of the poorest provinces in Northern China. Their parents probably sold them to the Snakeheads. Sending them back will be a death sentence to them," I said then looked back at the office then walked into it.
When I came out, I had the briefcases. "Is this his money?" I asked lifting them up.
As White nodded, the Mobster blurted out, "hey you can't…," but stopped after I knocked him out with a kick.
"Shut up," I muttered as White watched in silence as I walked over and handed the money over to the girl I spoke to.
"Take this divide it equally and start new lives here. Just do me a favor apply for legal citizenship, now git the feds will be here soon," he said as she took it then after speaking to the other girls they all ran out.
I turned watching them go and White came over. "You do realize that you just gave them several million dollars in evidence, and where did you learn how to speak Cantonese?" he said and I looked at him taking and pressing both sides of an object from my waist.
"Arrest me, but either way you can call in the Calvary, and I don't know how to speak Cantonese," I said then dropped the object at my feet and in a flash of light smoke poured out and covered me by the time it cleared I was gone.
I woke early in the next morning a little stiff from the night's adventures. Climbing out of bed slowly walked into my bathroom and flipped on the lights. Tuning to look into the mirror, I winced at the bruises that spotted various parts of my body.
"Good thing I was wearing a helmet, didn't know a blast from a shotgun could hurt so much. Drake 1 Medical, physical abrasions heal," I said aloud after glancing at giant bruise on my back.
At once, a ring descended from the ceiling encircling me. As it passed over my head lasers shot out and dragged down my body. As it passed over the bruises, they vanished bit by bit as the lasers passed over them.
After it reached my feet, it raised itself up and replaced itself on the ceiling and I turn in a circle looking over my newly healed body. "Gotta love alien technology," I said smiling before hopping in the shower.
A short while later I was laying a smiley face breakfast on the table in front of Emily. A few minutes later Emily was rolling across the floor laughing as I made impressions with a napkin over my face. When the door hissed opened, I froze turning to look at it.
"At least one of you is acting your age," I heard Wildwing say and I faced Emily.
"Now where is the fun in acting your own age," I said and she gave one finally fit of laughter before I slipped the napkin from my face.
Turning again, I frown at how both Wildwing and Mallory looked. "What's up with you?" I asked.
The two looked at each other before answering, "Dragon Knight struck again last night. Stepped in on a cop sting. His armor stopped a shotgun blast to the back, but the way this guy is taking risks he's more than likely the get himself killed no matter how good he is.
But right now I'm just glad if he isn't Mondo Man," Mallory said taking some cereal from a cupboard.
Nodding I muttered, "Dragon Knight sounds like a bad comic, or cartoon," as I pulled out my new cell and checked the clock on it.
"Sorry guys I gotta go," I said standing and Emily pouted.
"Where?" Wildwing asked frowning.
"I have a tutoring appointment with Xena, I'll be back for sure this time," I said putting my plate away.
Out in the hall I kept a straight face all the way to the elevator before I snorted a smile lighting my face. I caught a bus to the school and a few heads turned as I walked inside. After reporting to the office, I was shown to a classroom where Xena sat waiting for him.
As he came in, she turned and smiled. "Nice to see you out of HQ," she said.
"Well in some ways, it's good to be out. So, where do we start," I said joining her at her table.
An hour later, she put away her math and science stuff and I watched her. How her eye seemed to sharpen even when she struggled.
As I pulled out her history stuff I muttered, "And now for history, and as Edison once said 'never stop questioning,' we must keep questioning the past to learn from it."
She frowned at that and said quickly, "I think it was Einstein that said that."
Frowning as I laid her book on the table in nodded. "Yeah I think you're right he did say that, and since you can name quotes from Einstein, I must take a leaf from him and ask a question," I said as I saw her freeze.
"Why the hell do you need a tutor?" I asked head in my hand a sly smile on my face.
She looked at me for a few seconds then sighed, "I don't I've been faking it," and I frowned.
"Why?" I asked my forearm lowering to the table.
Standing she walked to the window and looked out. "When I first started school I blew the teachers away how fast I was learning. At first, I was proud but I got a lot of heat from it. Being called a freak, nerd, things like that.
So I thought it would be best to hold myself back in school. And I was making it work holding back in school while doing college level work at home with a friend. I know it sounds silly but I didn't want to stand out, I wanted to be, normal," I said before facing him again.
Looking at her, I nodded. "Understandable, but tell me you know how smart I am. Do I seem like a freak or a nerd?" I asked eyebrows going up.
She looked at me and smiled. "No you're cool," she said sitting down and I chuckled.
For a few seconds we had a laugh or over it before she grew serous again. "Drake practically since we had our first calls together I had a feeling that you were as smart as me. If not smarter," she said and my eyebrows went higher.
"From you that's high praise indeed. Now as your tutor its time I gave a lesson, that is after I inform the principle," I said standing.
"In what I practically know everything?" she asked.
Looking at her, I smiled. "Math, and history another day," I muttered.
Half an hour later, we were at an arcade playing a game. "Oh come on! I would have thought you'd have better coordination then that!" I said into my mike from my spinning arcade pod as my score went higher after shooting down a few more animated fighters.
"Don't worry about me my coordination is top notch, worry about your own," she snapped back at me through my ear price as our scores became equal.
We walked out of the arcade laughing and debating about the game. "… just won't admit that I'm the better pilot and shot than you," Drake said and I playfully shoved him.
"Well next time we go arcade setting and we'll see who gets the final ace, how about a hotdog," I said gesturing toward a vender.
After he looked at the vender, he started shaking his head. "Oh no I know where you can get the best hotdogs in town and it's near an old family friend," he said.
Thirty minutes later, we were at the second level of the mall and I was eating my hotdog. "You're right best dogs in town," I moaned in pleasure.
After swallowing his bite, he nodded. "I have missed these, now I would like you to meet someone," he said and led me over to where an old blind Japanese man with dark glasses over his eyes sat at a stand with bowl of money and a bonsai on a table his radio telling a story of Dragon Knights latest antics.
As we approached, the old man turned his head to face us. "Drake, it is so good to see you, in a since that is," he said smiling and I frowned.
"It's good to see you to Satoshi to anything good on the news?" Drake said.
"Only you my Little Fighting Tiger," he said.
At that, Drake drowned. "What they did they run another story about me in the papers?" he asked.
"As to that I can only guess," Satoshi said then looked in my direction.
"Now who is this lovely young lady with you?" he asked and Drake looked at me.
"Who said I was a lady?" I asked deepening my voice.
Smiling the old man clicked his tongue rapidly. "Cheating on a blind man didn't your mother teach you better, if I'm not mistaken you're blushing," he said and I hid my face as it flushed.
"Hey nothing from the peanut gallery," I said waving at Drake as he covered his laugh with his hand.
Just then, a man came up. "How much for a paper?" he asked taking one from the rack.
"The Times two fifty," Satoshi said facing the man.
Nodding the man put the money in the bowl and started to walk away but was stopped as Satoshi blocked him with his fly swatter. "And that cookie is a dollar fifty," he said and the man froze.
He opened his mouth then looked from both mine and Drake's hard faces. "Sorry sir, lot on my mind," he said dropping the rest of the money in the bowl.
"That's quite alright it happens to all of us at one point or another," Satoshi said and the man left.
"Are you sure you're blind?" I asked looking at him.
At that, Satoshi faced me then slowly raised his hand and slipped his sunglasses from his face. For a few seconds I stared into his misty white eyes before I lowered my gaze.
"It's alright young lady, I get that all the time," he said smiling slipping his shades back on.
After a good twenty minutes of laughter and talk, Drake said goodbye and the two of us turned to walk away. "I liked him a lot, who was he?" I asked as we got on the escalator down.
Smiling he looked at me. "He's the man who raised my mother. He was best friends with her parents. When my mother's father died in Vietnam and her mother a year later from cancer he took her in.
He tried to do the same for me in when… my parents died but the judge was a hard ass because he was blind and not a blood relative," he said.
When I could no longer hear them I reached over, turned the radio back up, and listen to more about The Dragon Knight as I felt a precence approach me. A moment later another set of footprints came close. Only these one were angry.
"I see you already know," I angry voice said.
Looking at the speaker I said, "I've known as long as you have, I'm blind not deaf," motion toward the radio.
"And yet you just saw him and didn't get him to change the name! Where is your pride? Your honor?" the man growled out in a low tone.
"Right where it needs to be," I said.
"How can you say that with what he has done? What he is still doing!" the voice demanded.
At that I flipped the sign on my stand after picking up my money grabbed the man and we walked into a bathroom. "Maybe because I remember everything that's been happening! Especially to him! Of all of them!
They have been targeted and vanished one at a time and he could vey well be the last! And what have we done! Nothing!
We did nothing! Even after it the first time to them! To him!" I snapped at him after I was sure we were alone.
The man was silent for a moment then. "Despite the losses he has no right to the name! And you had better believe that out of the rest of us I'm the calmest about what he has done! He's making it a part of a cheap superhero comic!" he snapped.
"Didn't you hear what I said? There could be no other! And you tell them from me that I was just as angry as they are about what he did!
But then I remembered everything that's been going on out there! Then it also crossed my mind that he's doing what we should have done a long time ago instead of waiting! So you tell them that I am proud of what he is doing out there!
He may not be the one we've been waiting for but he is pretty darn close! We failed to protect them when they needed us! And now every time he walks out of the Ducks HQ he is in danger and it grows the longer he stays out!" I snapped.
The man was silent for a moment then I heard him turn and walk away. "I'll tell them, but you forgot something, we haven't located his Heart Holder yet," he said then walked out of the bathroom.
After he was gone, I muttered, 'and where ever she is I hope she's safe,' I thought.
'Me to, but you should know that he's partially right,' a voice in my mind said.
'Not you to,' I thought with a moan.
'Don't worry I agree with you, but you have to think on this. The more he does what he's been doing the more he's alienates himself and the less the others will be willing to give him aid when he will need it,' the voice said before falling silent and I couldn't think of anything more to say.