Kara looked at the design in front of her and sighed, she had finally finished designing her prosthetic eye.
In truth, she had been procrastinating for nearly a week now, refusing to work on the thing and hoping for an alternative while hanging out with Kori.
Unfortunately Zatara himself didn’t have any magical means of accelerating her recovery and, even when she got her hands on Nth metal, it would still take a long time for her to regenerate the eye, far too long to justify staying crippled, especially when she could easily remedy that using the Fortress’ capabilities.
Her cousin didn’t mind her using his home away from home, he barely stayed at the place anyway and Kara felt comfortable inside the crystalline building, among the Kryptonian sunstone computers and equipment.
Not that she didn’t enjoy human housing but, after living so long on Krypton, the lack of crystals around felt just a little bit odd.
Kara had debated for a long time about what to put on her eye, laser eyes or x-ray visions were classics but she already had those, in fact she already had pretty much everything in her own biological eye, there was no need to improve it.
If she was even capable of doing so that is. She had been raised to be a member of the science guild but she was still only an apprentice.
More than that she didn’t want to get used to having anything special in her eye since it was going to be the first thing she healed when she could.
So she went with a disposable device, a modified version of the sunstone programming on her leg, instead of teleporting her back to the fortress the eye would start the teleporting sequence and then fail, catastrophically.
The resulting explosion wouldn’t be the biggest and, considering she wanted to be a hero, that was a good thing, instead it would break the space around itself shattering everything caught in the explosion regardless of how tough it was or what defenses it put up.
It probably wasn’t the best idea to carry around something so dangerous but, if she was gonna carry a secret weapon it damn well was gonna be something that hit harder than just her fists.
Sending a copy of the design to the Fortress AI she ordered it produced and stretched her arms above her head laying back against the chair, just as she was getting ready to leave her uncle’s hologram appeared by her side.
“Kara Zor-El, are you certain you wish for such device to be produced?”
“I did send it to you didn’t I?” Kara sighed and got to her feet. “Don’t worry I made sure to put plenty of safety precautions on it, it has a proximity sensor and can’t even detonate too close to me or Kal-El, or if the sensor fails.”
“Very well, it will be ready by tomorrow.”
“Say, how is the data recovery from my damaged ship?” Kara took the chance to ask. She still found it extremely uncomfortable to talk with the image of her dead uncle so she had been avoiding getting the information.
“It is going well, despite how damaged it was the Fortress is recovering and decoding more information every day and it should be 85% done in another 29 hours.”
“What about the remaining 15%?”
“The last 15% of the information was either permanently lost or will require significant computational efforts to restore, there can be no expected time for completion.”
Walking away from the computer she cracked her neck and left the room entering the main hall, she briefly stopped in front of the giant statues of Jor-El and Lara Lor-Van. “Did Kal-El build this?”
“No, the statue was part of Jor-El’s design for the fortress.”
“Heh, uncle was a good man but very prideful, it was just like him to make a giant statue holding our entire planet in his hand, no wonder he was friends with General Zod.” She considered the figure for a little longer before shaking her head and turning away. “What kind of information was it anyway? Just a copy of Kal-El’s.”
“No, Kal-El’s ship was filled with information about culture, art, religion and civilian technologies, Jor-El considered them more important and more fitting for his young son.” The hologram told her as he pretended to walk beside her, “You ship is far more focused on the less idealized size of Krypton, military technology, war records, political information about the sector, I believe it was Jor-El’s intent for you to safeguard such information until such time as you felt prudent to allow Kal-El to see it.”
Well now, that was interesting, Kara already started to daydream a kryptonian war armor fully protecting her from kryptonite and enhancing her power even further while wielding futuristic weapons.
“Can I see the military designs then?” She tried to keep her voice neutral but there was no mistaking the eagerness there.
“Unfortunately not, as Kal-El is now older than you by a significant amount the clearance for looking at the information has automatically passed to him.”
Nooooooooo, her army of modular sunstone military drones!
Shoulders dropping she made a mental note to ask her cousin for the information and checked the time on her new phone, Kori would be meeting the other sidekicks today and Kara wanted to accompany her halfway there to show her support.
Waking into the huge cylindrical chamber she selected Fawcett city and activated the Zeta-tube, feeling the Zeta-bean hitting her body she frowned for a few seconds, next thing she knew she was stepping out of a door in a dark alley.
Taking a second to see if anybody was watching her she put on a simple blank mask just to make sure and floated up flying towards her apartment.
The building had been damaged at Amber’s rampage but, lucky for her, it was minor and it was already in working order after only two weeks of repairs, a miracle since almost everyone who did such repairs was busy fixing the worst of the damage on the city.
“Hey Kori I’m home!” She called out as she stepped inside from the open window.
“Hello friend Kara,” Said Kori, she was holding a bag of cookies in one hand and applying a large coating of mustard on top of them. “Please, would you care for a cookie? This yellow condiment is truly delightful when put on top of it.”
“Nope.” Kara grimaced, she may have wanted one before it was covered mustard. “So, are you excited to meet the other sidekicks?”
“Exultation! Joy! I am indeed most exhilarated to meet the others!” She almost screamed as her hair started floating behind her and the tips started catching fire, “X’hal’s breath I am late, hold this friend Kara I have to get ready, Princess Diana is going to be here at any moment!”
Dashing away towards her bedroom Kori started throwing her civilian clothes around as she rushed to get ready, Kara followed her giving some calming words.
“Don’t worry I’m sure Wonder Woman would wait a few minutes for you to get ready, besides, even if you are a little late, it’s not like it’s an official event, there’s no deadline.” Then she considered who her friend was meeting and decided to disperse some sagely advice. “And remember Kori, a nickname is a good way to close the distance and become fast friends, if you’re not certain how to give someone a nickname you can use someone’s characteristics like, for example, calling Robin SHORTY or little guy, something along those lines.”
Floating out of her room, Kori’s hair trailed a fiery aura behind her as she finished adjusting her superhero costume; her armor was very close to Wonder Woman's but left Kori’s midriff exposed and didn't have the bracelets. Kara still found it strange that she didn’t have a bellybutton. “Apologies friend Kara, what did you just say?”
“Nevermind, it was nothing important.” Kara sighed. Sabotaging Kori’s ability to make friends wouldn’t sit well with her.
“Do you think they are going to like me?” Kori asked, her hair finally going back to normal as her feet touched the floor.
“I’m sure they’re going to love you Kori, you have nothing to worry about.”
“Thank you.” The girl started fidgeting making Kara give her a hug.
“Come on, let’s go.” Kara put her mask back on
They flew out of the apartment and back towards the Zeta-tube, this time stepping out on Washington DC half an hour before the meeting date.
“Good to see you’re here on time.” Said Wonder Woman, she was waiting for them beside the Zeta-Tube exit, her shoulder leaning on the building and her full gear on, “good to see you too Kara.”
Kara nodded at the woman, “Say, does your invitation for a spar have a date of expiration? Kori and Kal-El are still teaching me how to fight but I’d like to test myself later.”
“It doesn’t.” Wonder Woman smiled. “But since you’re a beginner perhaps you should come with us to Themyscira one of those days, I’m sure Starfire and Superman are great teachers but you’d benefit from a larger pool of opponents.”
“Really? I’m finally meeting Kal-El’s parents later this week but I’d love to go.”
The island of the amazons was one of the places that still intrigued, she really wanted to go but, at the same time, she was kind of afraid she’d draw the attention of the gods.
Also, she had been a man in her previous life; could she step into the island without earning someone’s ire? Rao she really hoped so.
“Please, are you sure you do not want to attend the meeting with me?” Kori asked holding her hands.
“Another day Starfire,” Kara shook her head and called her by her superhero name for the first time making the girl beam. “Besides, you know I have a meeting later.”
“Well, this is where we part ways then,” Wonder Woman said and clapped Kara on the shoulder. “Do take my offer one of those days; we’d love to have Kori’s friend over.”
Seeing Wonder Woman’s affectionate gaze towards her new protégée Kara had to laugh, yep the woman had fallen for Kori’s infectious personality alright.
With another hug Kori and Wonder Woman flew away towards the Hall of Justice leaving Kara alone once again.
Kara took the Zeta-Tube back to Fawcett city and grabbed the backpack she had left at the house before flying up again.
Instead of taking the zeta-tube towards her meeting Kara found a deserted place and quickly ascended above the clouds and beyond the sights of almost everyone, she didn’t want to leave an electronic trail and, despite her technological skills, she was pretty sure she couldn’t erase her details from the Zeta-tube network.
DC’s technological geniuses were such bullshit.
Soon she started approaching Gotham City and dropped beside a little gas station just outside the city limits.
She doubted Batman would have a way to track individual flyers entering his city but, seeing as he fought such being fairly often and was… well Batman, she wouldn’t put it past him and it was better to be safe than sorry.
Pulling out her burner phone she called a cab.
Almost an hour later she stepped out of the car in an alleyway close to Catwoman’s bar, the establishment was still closed but, using her x-ray vision she saw the woman sitting alone in one of the tables, Selina also had a lead box bellow the table and another, much smaller one, on her pocket.
Well that was the problem with having such well known weakness, people who were going to deal with you tended to acquire it.
At least it was a fairly obvious thing, after all she may not be able to see inside a lead box but she could certainly see the lead box itself and it was pretty easy to guess what was inside.
Kara really didn’t know how her cousin kept getting surprised on all those comics. With the possible exception of Lex Luthor people didn’t build everything around them with lead so it was pretty easy to see when something was suspicious even if he couldn’t see what exactly it was.
With only an effort of will she reconfigured the sunstone inside her new leg and activated the environmental shield inside it in order to block radiation, it had the unfortunate sideffect of also blocking most of the beneficial effects of solar radiation but she was working to remedy that.
Maybe then Kal-El would accept his own version of the shield instead of being stubborn.
She understood that blocking his sunlight absorption would decrease his power but he had been living under the yellow sun for decades now, he had enough reserves to function without it for a few minutes in a fight.
The shield covered her entire body with a shimmer but then settled, it made her look slightly discolored, her clothes just a little less bright, her skin a little whiter but it was hardly noticeable.
Approaching the bar she knocked on the door and waited a few seconds, on her vision Selina put a hand on the lead box in her pocket and got up from the table. Damn she really had scared the poor woman on their previous meeting.
Catwoman aproached the door and Kara put on her best smile, freaking out the woman had been fun but there was no need to overdo it, thats how you create enemies.