#2 – Raiders Of The Lost

Sharon Holmes dusted herself off after falling through the rotten wooden boards of the floor above. Totally by accident, she found herself in a darkened concrete bunker which she had been searching the world for months to find.

It was a relic of World War II, a place rumored to have been a hiding place of none other then Adolph Hitler during the allied bombings of Germany. It was the hiding place of a man who refused to face those he terrorized, those he ordered the murder of. A place where he could hide from his own mortality, to prevent death from collecting it’s much owed dues.

“A coward’s bunker.”

“I’ll have to disagree with you there.”

The sound of the unknown deep voice set her heart racing. She ducked into a corner, pulling her two pistols out in the blink of an eye, aiming them at the source of the sound. “Who’s there?”

“I could ask you the same.” A tall, bald man wearing an expensive suit stepped out of a dark corner, as he lit a cigar and held it up in front of his face.

“Sharon. Sharon Holmes.” She stood up and started to approach the man slowly, pistols still drawn. “And I got here first.”

“You obviously have no idea who I am.”

Sharon nodded. “You’re Lex Luthor. But…you’re different somehow. And that amazon woman isn’t guarding you.”

Luthor laughed. “I’m from another Earth, Ms. Holmes. One where, I presume, you don’t exist.”

“And what, may I ask, are you doing here?”

“I’m here to…collect a few things.” Luthor tossed his cigar on the floor, causing it to roll toward Sharon. “A few designs of what you call the Third Reich. It will allow me to eliminate a few enemies back home.”

Sharon gasped a little as her eyes began to fix on Luthor. “You…You’re talking about…genocide!”

“Very perceptive.” Luthor nodded and turned to leave, just as Sharon looked down at the still-glowing cigar. Strangely, it was glowing brighter since it had been tossed to the ground. She suddenly realized why – it was an explosive!

Sharon looked around the room quickly, to see if the book she was looking for was there. It wasn’t – Luthor must have taken it before she arrived. She raced out of the room quickly, headed the same direction Luthor went – but she was forced to dive to the ground as she heard the explosive go off behind her.

Once the dust from the explosion settled, Sharon looked around quickly. Lex Luthor was nowhere to be found. But she knew, somehow, that he would present a big problem. She knew that she would have to find him. And she would have to find Linda Danvers.
Words were spoken, ancient words. They were spoken in a powerful, but soft voice by none other the Lex Luthor, as he explored the depths of knowledge in his newly acquired book. He sat in the center of one of the great mysteries of nearly every Earth across every probability – Stonehenge. It’s great suspended stones gave the place an aura of power. It was a place Lex Luthor felt at home. They were only words, but they carried so much upon them. The words carried over distances ordinary humans and metahumans alike would consider great – yet for a power so ancient…meant nothing.

Somewhere deep within the Colorado mountains of Otherverse Earth, in a newly constructed Fortress, a sobbing Kara Zor-El was being held tightly in Rogue’s arms as Rogue tried in futility to calm her. Kara had woken up suddenly during the night, shaking and uttering the name ‘Kal’ repeatedly. She then progressed to crying. Rogue tried her best to comfort her…but she seemed inconsolable, like she had just lost a part of herself. Even Kara didn’t knew what triggered her feelings. But she couldn’t shake them either. All she seemed to know was that she felt Kal…and he was in terrible danger.

Another Earth, at the Fantastic Four headquarters, in New York City. Dr. Strange had simply been talking to Reed Richards in his lab about a strange feeling he had when he was stricken. The look of fright and shock on Reed’s face echoed the one on Dr. Strange’s, as pain radiated through his chest. He gripped his shirt tightly and simply collapsed on the floor. His reactions faster then his thoughts, Reed simply took Dr. Strange to the infirmary and hooked him up to monitors. Reed hadn’t slept, or even given himself a break since that moment, as he stayed by the side of his longtime friend – yet Dr. Strange still hadn’t awakened. Sue Richards worried about her husband, as she watched him deteriorate alongside his friend…but she understood.

Late one night in a large hotel room in Metropolis, Linda Danvers felt a dark cloud hang over her, one that she could not explain or understand. She turned to sculpting to try and figure out what was plaguing her subconscious. The resulting form created by her hands both haunted and intrigued her. It was Superman, but his face looked different somehow – it looked twisted, angry…filled with hatred. She had to toss a sheet over it soon after she created it. Seeing it prevented her from sleeping.

Lara Night was about as far from the disturbance as one could get, living in northern Los Angeles – but she could feel it as if it were taking place inside in her own mind. She could feel something tearing through the cosmos like a tidal wave – it something ancient, powerful…something evil. It was a disturbance that brought such sadness to the universe, that even Gods would shed tears over it. She immediately sensed it’s source, which chilled her more then anything else. It came from Otherverse Earth. But then she felt something else. A distant voice crying out, a profound sadness. It wasn’t part of any of the other feelings Lara detected – it felt closer to her. It was Reed Richards.
“What’s the matter, Reed?”

Reed turned around in his chair at the sound of a soft, friendly voice he recognized – Lara’s. His hair was a mess, his eyesight fuzzy from lack of food, water, and sleep. He didn’t speak to answer Lara’s question – the tears forming in his eyes, and Dr. Strange’s unconscious form on an exam table answered the question for him.

“Oh–” Lara suddenly felt herself without words as she stood next to the exam table, and placed her hands gently on Dr. Strange’s chest. She closed her eyes, and remained motionless for several minutes before finally reopening them and turning to look at Reed.

“Is he…gone?” There was a sadness in Reed’s voice that struck Lara like an arrow through her heart.

“He’s–” Lara sighed and looked down at Dr. Strange’s body again. She had to phrase her answer carefully to give Reed hope. “His body is in perfect condition. But his metaphysical self–”

“Can’t find it’s way back?” Reed seemed to brighten up all of a sudden, as if all he needed was to have an active part in his friend’s recovery. “What can we do?”

“No, no–” Lara shook her head and looked at Reed sadly. “He doesn’t want to come back. He’s…searching for something.”

“Can…can he hear us?”

“I don’t know.” Lara shrugged. “If he could, he would know that I’m here…and that I have some of the answers he’s searching for.”

“I know you are here, Lara.” Dr. Strange suddenly opened his eyes and sat up straight. “As for the answers you have–”

“Stephen!” Reed raced over to the side of the exam table. “What happened to you? I was worried–”

Dr. Strange nodded and sat up on the edge of the exam table. “I had become separated from my physical self by a force not under my control.”

“How did you know I was here?” Lara held out a hand to help Dr. Strange to his feet, and then into a chair. He was still a little weak from being immobile for so long.

“I…felt you searching for me.” Dr. Strange took a deep breath as he sat down in the chair and blinked twice. He was a little dizzy, even after such light exertion. “I felt your presence, reaching out for my soul…to pull it back. I knew what you were doing, but I wasn’t ready to come back just yet.”

“You were on the brink of finding answers.” Lara shook her head. “But you were losing your will to live, Stephen.”

The look of shock on Reed’s face caused Dr. Strange to hang his head a little and nod. “It’s so easy to become lost in a quest. Sometimes I just…forget.”

Dr. Strange glanced back at Reed for a moment. Reed was once again fighting tears in his eyes, his hands shaking a little bit from the realization of how close he was to losing his friend…forever. “I’m sorry, Reed. Had I realized–”

“No matter, everything turned out well.” Lara stood up and looked at Reed. “Get some sleep, Reed. You need it. Stephen and I have some work to do.”

Reed nodded and slowly headed toward his quarters. As soon as he entered the hallway, he could see Sue standing in the doorway down the hall. “Reed? Is he okay?”

Reed only nodded silently as he approached Sue, who immediately hugged him tightly. “She heard you, didn’t she?”

He nodded again. “She did. How did you know?”

Sue smiled a little. “There are some things we’ll never completely understand, Reed. Lara is one of them.”

“Thank you, Sue.” Reed smiled and gave Sue a small peck on the cheek as the entered their quarters, holding hands. “Thank you for saving Stephen.”
“Mr. Danvers! Mr. Danvers!”

Sharon was out of breath when she reached Fred Danvers’ office at the Leesburg Police Department. Her hair was disheveled, and she looked like she had just returned from a war. In a way, she did – after her encounter in Germany, she headed straight for the last known location of Linda Danvers. Something strange had happened, and she knew Linda would be interested – only she discovered that she had no idea where Linda was.

“What’s the matter, Sharon?” Fred approached her from behind as she stopped to talk to Shauna. He had just gone for a cup of coffee, and recognized her distinctively British voice calling out his name.

“Something terrible has happened, Mr. Danvers! Lex Luthor has the the Ancient Book of Rai, and he’s planning to use it for genocide. I watched him take it while I was in Germany.”

“Germany? Are you nuts?” Shauna stood up to face Sharon. “He’s in Metropolis, he’s been on television three times today.”

“No, you don’t understand.” Sharon shook her head and sighed. “It’s not this Lex Luthor, it’s one from another Earth. He told me so.”

“Another Earth, huh?” Fred rubbed his chin and looked at Shauna. “Sounds like something my daughter might be interested in.”

Sharon nodded. “That’s why I came here. I need to find Charlie and Linda. But I don’t know where to look.”

“Have a seat, Sharon.” Fred picked up his telephone and began dialing. “Your prayers will be answered soon.”
“I do not believe in prayer.”

Lara laughed. “No, Dr. Strange, the other kind of ‘prey’. The kind that means death if we’re not careful. You’re still distracted aren’t you? You aren’t really paying attention.”

“I’m sorry, Lara.” Dr. Strange finally stood up on his own – the dizziness had finally subsided. “Something is haunting me.”

“What’s the matter?” Lara stepped closer to him. “This has to do with Rao, doesn’t it?”

Dr. Strange turned a little pale as he stared at Lara. “How–”

“I sensed something wrong with Kal-El. His soul is being corrupted by an ancient force.” Lara sat down on the edge of the exam table where Dr. Strange was lying earlier. “But souls are interlinked with their creator. So–”

“So Rao is being corrupted as well.” Dr. Strange nodded. “That explains what I sensed as well. What kind of force could corrupt a deity?”

“Trust me, Dr. Strange…you don’t want to know. I think it’s more important that we find out who’s responsible.”

Dr. Strange walked over to a window to look outside. “Corrupt Gods destroy things, Lara. It’s obvious someone wants something destroyed.”

“Otherverse Earth?”

He shook his head. “No…whoever is doing this is located on Otherverse Earth. Whoever it is wants control, not destruction. Order, rather then chaos.”

Lara gasped momentarily as a thought popped into her mind. “Lex Luthor. It has to be Lex Luthor.”

Dr. Strange nodded slowly. “Yes. Yes, that would make perfect sense. And if that’s true, we will have to stop him.”

“I’ll just have to kill him again, I guess.” Lara sighed and turned toward the door.

“Do not.” Dr. Strange grabbed Lara’s shoulder tightly and turned her around. “It’s very likely that the last brush with death you gave him is what clued him into this power, Lara. What you did exposed him to things no mortal man should know.”

“Are you suggesting he’s now immortal because of what I did?”

“Not at all.” Dr. Strange walked out of Reed’s lab, motioning Lara to follow. “But you’ve given him the tools to make himself immortal. You’ve taken away his fear of death.”
Karen and Carrie, known to most people as ‘The Twins’, sat across from each other in the living room of the large Fortress, hidden away in the Colorado mountains. They both sat with their arms folded tightly, chilled from the fear and worry they felt. Kara was crying again – she had been off and on for almost the entire day. They thought about calling Reed, but he had his hands full with Dr. Strange’s sudden health problems.

“Carrie…What if she’s dying? What if Dr. Strange is dying too?” Karen bit her lip and stood up to pace a little bit. “What if we’re all dying, because of this…place?”

“No…I refuse to believe that.” Carrie shook her head quickly. “There has to be someone who can help. Someone who knows about these things.”

Karen’s eyes suddenly brightened as a realization passed through her mind. “This has something to do with spiritual stuff, Carrie. Think about it! Kara can feel her cousin…Dr. Strange has fallen ill–”

“Spiritual.” Carrie leapt to her feet and snatched Karen’s arm to pull her along. They were both headed toward a room that both Kara and Rogue had asked them to stay out of – it contained a Projector like the one in Reed’s lab. It was installed in the Fortress in case the place had to be evacuated in an emergency – a big emergency, such as if the planet was on the verge of destruction. Carrie had her own interpretation of an emergency.

“Where are we going? Are we visiting Reed?”

“No.” Carrie raced around the room quickly, setting the controls for the machine as she had watched Reed do several times before. “Spiritual is the key, Karen. We have to find someone with a spiritual link.”

“Who?” Karen stared at Carrie, demanding an answer even as Carrie pulled her onto the machine’s platform alongside herself.

“Linda Danvers.”
“Can you work with him?”

Reed was still examining the body of Kal-El, lying on a purple metallic table in the center of a very alien-looking lab. The room was filled with such tables, a few containing other dead bodies covered by white sheets. Lara had transported Reed, Dr. Strange, and herself to the center of the lab, with a certain project in mind.

“No decomposition. Rigor mortis has barely set in.” Reed turned off the scope he had around his head and removed it quickly. “With a little time, we can probably restore his spirit as well.”

“I don’t like this.” Dr. Strange shook his head and looked around the room. “Where is this place?”

“Project Cadmus. It was rebuilt by Lex Luthor.”

Reed and Dr. Strange both turned to stare at Lara. Reed decided to speak first. “Did you say…Cadmus?”

Lara nodded. “Lex Luthor plans on resurrecting dead heroes of the past and future. He wants to use them to destroy his enemies. Starting with Kal-El and Diana Prince.”

“How do you know this?” Dr. Strange folded his arms and stared steadily at Lara, waiting for an answer.

“Look around you, Stephen.” Lara walked around the room slowly, pulling back a few of the white sheets. Kal-El, Diana Prince, Jean Grey, Reed Ri–”

Lara pushed the last white sheet back to it’s original location as she ignored the look of shock on Reed’s face. “Remember what I told you about Kal-El and Rao?”

Dr. Strange nodded, and grabbed Reed’s arm as he reached for that last white sheet. “No, Reed. It is better if you don’t–”

Reed shoved Dr. Strange’s arm aside, and pulled back the sheet. Lying on the steel table were his own frozen eyes, looking back at him. His hands shaking, he reached for yet another white sheet. As he pulled it back slowly, his worst fear met reality. “God, no–”

“Sue Storm.” Lara held Reed’s hand tightly to calm him. “You and Sue were never lovers in this reality. She didn’t live long enough.”

Lara suddenly pulled Reed behind her as she watched the arm of Kal-El’s body move, rising slowly. She knew that Reed might object to her acting as his protector – but Reed was far from a match for Kryptonian strength. Lara hoped she at least stood a chance against it. “We’re too late, Stephen.”

Dr. Strange nodded, uttering a single word under his breath which rendered him intangible – just before Kal-El’s body rose to it’s feet, and reached for him. Both Lara and Dr. Strange could tell that the body didn’t contain Kal-El’s soul – it was empty, being powered by a force which could only be referred to as life in the loosest of terms.

“It’s starting.” Lara took a couple of steps back, still holding Reed behind her, as the body of Diana Prince began to move as well. “Reed, Stephen…I think it’s time we left this place–”

She suddenly felt lucky that she had been alert, keeping her telekinetic shield strong – she felt a had blow from Kal-El to the side of her head. He was far from full strength, as his body had not fully recovered from reanimation – but it was strong enough, and he still had the ability to move across the room in the blink of an eye.

“Lara, look out!”

She ducked quickly at the sound of Reed’s voice, just barely getting her head out of the way of another fist – this one owned by Diana Prince.

“Hold onto my waist, Reed.” As Lara’s fingers began crackling with energy, Reed obeyed quickly – he knew enough about the laws of electricity and grounding to know that he was safer touching her then standing even a few inches away.

Lara felt Dr. Strange’s hand on her shoulder just as her fingers filled the room with high-voltage bolts of electricity, tearing holes through the stainless steel walls as they went. The bolts of electricity which connected with Kal and Diana caused their muscles to seize, collapsing them to the ground. The remaining bodies in the room were reduced to charcoal in seconds. Lara intended to make sure the rest of them were useless as zombies. She hoped she had succeeded.

“Time to go!”

Lara, Reed, and Dr. Strange vanished from Otherverse Earth in a flash of light just as Kal and Diana began returning to their feet. Lara had instantly transported them back to Reed’s lab back at Fantastic Four headquarters.

“This is a most serious situation.” Dr. Strange rubbed his chin and looked out the window. “Once Luthor is done conquering his own world…what’s to stop him from conquering ours? Or yours?”

“I had a dream a short time ago, Stephen.” Lara sighed and stood next to Dr. Strange at the window. “I dreamt that I had to destroy Otherverse Earth, that I was given no choice. It was…infected, and I had to prevent spread of the infection. Now I fear that may be closer to reality then I imagined.”

“Lara, destruction of life only…appears necessary sometimes.” Dr. Strange turned to stare at Lara, the look in his eyes an intense mixture of emotions. “But life is more precious then anything. Anything, Lara. First, do no harm. Once you learn that, you can understand the universe.”

Lara nodded silently as she stood next to Dr. Strange, staring out over the nearby city. It was full of life. And no doubt, there were hundreds of cities like it on Otherverse Earth, with millions of people. People who just wanted to live their lives in peace. It made Lara feel angry, to think that Lex Luthor wanted nothing more then to destroy that peace.
“That aught to get Superman’s attention.”

Carrie had just turned a large billboard atop a building in Metropolis upside down, as Karen sat on the small steel maintenance walkway below it. They were in the right city, but they had no idea where to find Linda Danvers. They knew who would – but they had to get his attention first.

Luckily, victory came easier then they thought. Carrie turned abruptly as an unfamiliar blonde woman in a white cut-off tee-shirt, white gloves, a blue skirt, and red laced boots tapped her on the shoulder. Yet her face was so familiar. “Linda? Is that you?”

Linda nodded quietly, though she was a little surprised that the two knew who she was. Then again, since they were wearing costumes and they managed to flip over a billboard, it wasn’t all that surprising. “Who are you two?”

“We’re Kara’s daughters, remember? I’m Carrie, this is Karen. Cool costume, by the way.”

“Thank you.” Linda paced around Carrie and Karen, noting their new costumes. “So, what brings you here from Otherverse?”

“Not a car, I can tell you that.” Carrie smiled mischievously as she spoke – she had been waiting a long time to tell that joke. Karen just rolled her eyes. “We need your help. Something’s wrong with Kara…and it has something to do with Kal-El.”

“I’m not sure I understand. Is she sick?”

Carrie looked at Karen for an answer – but Karen just shrugged. “We’re not sure. She’s just been…crying a lot.”

“Crying?” Linda bit her lip. She didn’t know Kara well, but by reputation she knew Kara to be fairly level-headed, strong. Kara was the last person she would expect to curl up and sob over something. “I’ll do my best to help.”

“Cool!” Carrie nudged Karen, and pulled her to her feet. “Let’s go!”

Linda and the twins stared at each other for several minutes as they each expected the other to make the next move. It was several seconds before Linda realized that something was wrong. “You do have a way to get us there, right?”

Carrie looked at Karen, who shrugged again. “I guess we figured…you would be able to solve that problem.”

“Oh, God.” Linda pinched her nose with a gloved hand and shook her head. “I’m sorry to break this to you two…I can’t do that anymore. You’re stuck here.”

“What are we supposed to do now?” Karen spoke up first this time, her eyes on Carrie. Carrie just stood still, hanging her head, blaming herself for what had happened. She knew that she was the one who had caused them to be stranded.

Linda sighed. “Let’s get you two indoors. I have a nice hotel room across the street, we can wait there until we figure out what to do.”

“Across the street?” Carrie looked at Karen. They both suddenly understood how Linda found them so quickly after they had turned the billboard upside down.

Carrie and Karen followed quickly as Linda jumped across to the rooftop of the building directly across the street and headed into the stairway. They walked two floors down, before Linda checked the hallway to make sure no one was there, motioning the twins to follow her to her room once the coast was clear.

“Here we are.” Linda closed the door behind her, tossing her gloves on a table next to the door as she entered the living room area of the three room suite. As she reached for a lamp next to the couch, a bright flash of light filled the room, causing her to jump. “What the–”

“Lara!” Carrie and Karen nearly mowed down Linda as they raced across the room to hug Lara Night, who had appeared seemingly out of nowhere. Linda had to laugh when she watched the twins hanging from Lara’s arms, hugging her tightly from both sides.

“Boy, are we glad to see you!” Carrie started first, talking quickly as Lara smiled at the energy the twins displayed at meeting her. “We came here to get Linda to help us, and–”

“And you can’t get back home.” Lara laughed a little. “That’s why I’m here. I know all about it.”

“We still need to bring Linda with us to help Kara.” Carrie looked over at Linda, who was putting her white gloves back on. She anticipated that she would be going, too. “See, Karen? We were never in danger…Lara looks after us.”

“Yeah, that’s me. Your personal bodyguard.” Lara smiled and offered one hand each to Carrie and Karen. As Linda held Carrie’s hand, she noticed a slight electrical charge fill the air in the room. It was only a second before she could see the room fading out of view.
“Hmm. Very interesting.” Lex Luthor sat in his office high atop LexCorp Towers, with only a desk lamp illuminating his office. In front of him was a single page news report about him being spotted in Germany, taking some kind of ancient book. Next to that, another report from LexCorp research, indicating elevated levels of certain kinds of particles which indicated that a gateway had been opened…either to or from someplace. And it happened twice. To Luthor that confirmed something he suspected for a long time – that there was a whole other Earth out there somewhere.

Luthor was patiently awaiting another report from his research department. Namely a report detailing the timeframe necessary for LexCorp to build a gateway of it’s own. He suspected that in any case with multiple realities, at least one of them would be a terrible war zone – and as a weapons dealer, potential for profit beyond his wildest dreams.

And then there was the issue of someone else using the name Lex Luthor. Someone who looked like him, by all accounts and descriptions. Luthor was a little intrigued by the idea – but instinctively, he knew that the other so-called Lex Luthor would have to go, if for no other reason then his intrusion on the Earth this Luthor called his own.

Luthor leaned back in his chair, tapping a couple of buttons on his phone. He knew that when he met this other Lex Luthor, he would no doubt be as intelligent – so Luthor decided to be prepared.


“I’m sending Mercy down in five minutes. I want you to introduce her to the most deadly weapons we currently have in prototype. And once you do, I will require five of each. How is that gateway coming along?”

“It’s coming along well, Mr. Luthor. It should be finished in a matter of hours.”

Luthor frowned and leaned forward. “That is unacceptable. What is taking you people so long?”

“I’m sorry, sir. We had a little snag with some government paperwork for the plutonium we need to use. The Nuclear Regulatory–”

“Forget about the paperwork.” Luthor stood up and leaned over his speakerphone. “If we wait for the government to approve this, we’ll all die of old age. Just finish it.”

“Yes, sir–”

Luthor cut off the man in mid-sentence and waved Mercy into the room as he spotted her standing in the doorway. “Mercy, I need you to go to research and make sure things are working. Feel free to use as much…incentive as you see fit.”

Mercy nodded quietly and turned to leave the room.

“Oh, and Mercy?”

“Yes, Lex?” Mercy turned around to face Luthor as she stood in a stream of light coming in through the partially opened door.

“Accept no substitutes.”
“Wow…What is this place?” Linda spun around a little bit as she glanced around at a compact living room area, complete with a large screen satellite television system. She spotted a few tall tinted windows, and headed toward them slowly.

“This is the Fortress.” Carrie grabbed Linda’s arm and pulled her toward one of the windows. She pointed down the steep mountainside below. “We’re in the Colorado mountains.”

Linda tapped one of the windows carefully. It felt like glass. “Can’t this shatter? Or be spotted from outside?”

“It’s camouflaged by a hologram outside.” Karen stepped between them and tapped on the glass. The mirrored outer layer of the window allows the image projection, and it’s protected against shattering by an electromagnetic field.”

Carrie rolled her eyes and nudged Linda. “She thinks she’s channeling Reed Richards sometimes.”

“Reed is the one who sent Lara to install them.” Rogue entered the room, followed by a Kara – who looked like she hadn’t slept or eaten much in days. “He did it for the twins. I guess he doesn’t care if Kara and I sit in a dark cave.”

“Mom, this is Lara.” Carrie squeezed in between Kara and Rogue, placing one hand on Kara’s shoulder. “She…helped us get back here.”

“Hello.” Kara only looked at Lara for a second before glancing at the floor. She seemed to be purposely avoiding Linda’s eyes as she crossed the room and sat down in one of the soft chairs.

“Could you guys…go to another room for a little while?” Linda looked around at everyone as she pulled another chair closer to Kara. “Kara and I need to talk.”

Rogue nodded as she herded the twins and Lara out of the living room quickly. As soon as they had left, Linda could tell that Kara had been holding back because of her daughters. But now that they were out of the room, tears began streaming down Kara’s face. She looked like she was mourning someone’s death.

“Kara…What’s wrong? Tell me.”

“I…felt Kal again last night. He was crying.” Kara paused for a second to wipe some tears from her face and take a deep breath to calm herself. “But not for himself. He was crying for me…for Carrie and Karen…for the entire planet. He was afraid, Linda. Afraid of what would happen to us.”

“Oh my God–” Linda stood up and began pacing a little bit. “My dad called me a short time ago. He said that a Lex Luthor impostor was spotted taking some kind of ancient book from Germany. The Ancient Book of Rai, it was called. It’s a book of the Ancient Arts, and has power over the dead.”

Linda’s last few words got Kara’s attention. She stood up now, too. “Lex Luthor is trying to bring Kal back to life for his own purposes, isn’t he? No wonder Kal was afraid. His worst fear is having to kill…Especially those he loves. We have to free him, Linda. We must.”

“I’m pretty much restricted to the physical world now, Kara–” Linda paused just long enough to watch sadness return to Kara’s eyes. It was almost as if her words, to Kara, sealed Kal’s doom. “–But I won’t let that stop me. I never do. I never will.”

“Thank you, Linda.” Kara turned around and hugged Linda tightly. “Just when things seem hopeless…You’ve given me hope.”



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