6. A Good Plan...
“What was that all about?”
Montez was sat in the lower level of The World; as good a name as any. Karrisa sat down next to Montez on the ledge, their feet dangling above the underground water system which rushed far below them.
“Nothing.” Montez replied, quietly, “Just me and my big mouth again.”
“You know, you shouldn't be so hard on yourself.” Karissa had taken it upon herself to be Montez' watcher, if not his friend ever since they had met. She was just about to turn eighteen, a full two years older than Montez and believed that if she had ever had a kid brother, she would have liked it to have been him. “There are plenty of people here more than happy to do it for you.”
Montez said nothing, just stared down into the canyon below. Karissa peered upwards at the shadows that moved; scurried and squeaked above them. Occasionally a bat would break free and fall from the shadows, correcting itself and returning to the safety of the pack.
“What do you think it was like?” Karissa asked absently, her gaze still skyward.
“What are you talking about?” Grunted Montez, lost in himself.
“When they were all still alive. The heroes. They would have been here, would have met in the cave... Batman. Superman. The Flash... my Mum and Dad. They would have all been here at some point. Don't you think that's amazing?”
“Bunch of losers, if you ask me.” Montez was angry and bitter, Karissa knew this. He kept it pretty well under control most of the time, but in these moments she knew what he could be like.
“You don't mean that.” Karissa said, suddenly feeling very tired.
“And what if I do!” Montez stood up now, his anger sparking his power, flickers of electricity escaping from his eyes. “I mean, what did they really achieve, huh? For all their grandstanding, for all their powers, they failed in the end, didn't they? I mean, look at us! Hiding in a cave from the big, bad boogeyman out there! What use were they!?”
Montez mother had died when he was just an infant and his father had raised him alone. A good, kind and loving father, Montez worshipped him... until Eclipso's black sands swept across the skies, turning Montez' father into a black shadow of his former self. Montez had barely escaped with his life when his beloved father turned on him, only truly saved, like the rest of them, by Mister E's magics. Karissa knew all of this, knew of the pain that Montez carried around within him.
“Montez, please...” She stood now, placing a hand softly on each side of his face. “We have all lost so much. My parents, they fell in the battle too... so many did. You're not alone here.”
Montez pulled away from Karissa.
“We're all alone.” He seethed, “I won't spend the rest of my life hiding in this place.”
“And what are you going to do about it? What can we do?”
“I'm going to stop him.” Montez said, the iron in his voice unsettling Karissa. “I'm going to put an end to this.”
“Oh, well that sounds like a good, well thought out plan.” Karissa didn't mean to antagonise him, but he was scaring her.
“Any plan is a good plan when you've got nothing else.” Montez said, calm but firm and he walked away.
“Montez...” Karissa said softly, watching him walk in to the shadows. “Montez?”