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2: Just Starting Out

This issue picks up at the exact moment the last issue leaves off (apart from the flashback on page one).

Narration in this issue is in the form of James's journal entries, which should be indicated on-panel by a distinctive (neat and precise) hand-written script. These captions will be marked in the script as "James's Journal", to distinguish them from third-person narrative captions.

Note that in the dialogue, Jerome will use British spelling while the others will use American spelling.

PAGE ONE. Six panels.

Panel 1

The attic of a suburban house. Filled with a jumble of boxes and old, forgotten what-nots. The hatch in the floor is open and light spills up through it. Half in the hatchway is JAMES: late teens, dark haired, t-shirt showing off his muscles.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Journal. 9/14/14.

Panel 2

James is now fully in the attic. A bare bulb throws more illumination. He's crouched over a large, solid-looking chest, fumbling with the padlock. The chest has "PRIVATE" stencilled on it.

CAPTION (James's journal):

This is not how I imagined my first patrol to go.

Panel 3

The chest is open, but we don't see in. Instead, we see the wonder on James's face.

CAPTION (James's journal):

I still remember the day I found my father's things.

Panel 4

James is starting to unpack the chest. First out is a box of computer disks, marked "FILES: 1993" and "CLASSIFIED", hand-written in a thick marker pen.

CAPTION (James's journal):

I had no idea what he was—who he used to be. He retired 20 years ago, of course, before I was born. But he kept his secret from me—from the world—all these years.

Panel 5

Next out is a thick, leather-bound book—the type that has a little lock and key to keep it closed. The cover reads, simply, "JOURNAL".

CAPTION (James's journal):

He was the greatest hero of them all. In the old days. When they still had heroes. Everybody's forgotten them now.

Panel 6

Finally, James brings out the costume and SHIELD. These are the same items that we saw him wearing in the last panel of issue 1. We should now be piecing together something of what is going on...

CAPTION (James's journal):

I haven't told him what I'm doing. I thought I could start small. Patrol the neighborhood. Maybe stop a hold-up. Get some experience before going public. After all, I'm just starting out.

PAGE TWO. One panel.

Single panel. Issue title and credits go at the bottom of this page.

Panel 1

A reprise of the scene that ended last issue. Los Angeles, night, a run-down part of town. There is a building on one side, open aqueduct on the other, and SARA trapped against a wire fence. James, wearing mask, costume, and shield, is protecting her, striking a heroic pose. And facing off against them, a K-MAN in wolfman form. (It should be on its feet, obviously having recovered from James's punch last issue, as this makes for a more menacing and dramatic panel.) Eyes glaring and teeth baring. (Hmmm, poetry.)

CAPTION (James's journal):

I never expected anything like this.

CAPTION:

Los Angeles. 14 September 2014.

PAGE THREE. Five panels.

Panel 1

James and Sara sizing each other up—the K-Man temporarily forgotten.

SARA:

Mage—

JAMES (cutting her off):

I'm not using that name.

CAPTION (James's journal):

She recognized the costume. I'm surprised. She can't be any older than I am.

Panel 2

Widen the view to include the K-Man, leaping towards them.

K-MAN:

RRRRrrrrraaaaaaaaaaa

SARA:

Well whoever you are, move it!

Panel 3

Our heroes dive in different directions, avoiding swinging claws.

JAMES:

What is it?

SARA:

Werewolf.

JAMES:

No, really, what is it?

CAPTION (James's journal):

The costume is a spider-silk derivative. Strongest fibers known to man. Bullet proof. But the manual never mentioned if it was claw proof.

Panel 4

James swings his left arm—the one with the shield—and smashes the K-Man full in the face with the flat of the shield.

SFX:

SMASH!

CAPTION (James's journal):

The shield, on the other hand, has a layer of silver—lethal to werewolves.

Panel 5

The K-Man is completely unfazed by the blow.

JAMES:

Uh-oh.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Or—was that cold iron for use against demons?

PAGE FOUR. Five panels.

Panel 1

James faces off against the K-Man when, surprising both of them, SARA leaps into the air and delivers a flying kick to the back of its head. It feels it! Yes, she's good at this fighting stuff when she has to be.

No dialogue.

Panel 2

While it's distracted, James delivers a strong right which makes it stagger back—note, it should now be manoeuvred somewhere near the edge of the aqueduct.

No dialogue.

Panel 3

Sara crouches behind the K-Man, in such a way as to set it up to trip over her if it steps back.

SARA:

Hit it again!

Panel 4

And indeed James does just that. The K-Man staggers back—and as expected, falls backwards over SARA, towards the edge of the aqueduct.

No dialogue.

Panel 5

Sara and James watch the K-Man plummet down.

K-MAN:

RRRRRrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaa!

SARA:

Throwing them off something high normally does the trick—

PAGE FIVE. Five panels.

Panel 1

Up-shot, K-Man POV, looking back at them from down in the aqueduct.

K-MAN:

Rrrrrrrr

SARA:

—but not for long. We need to get out of here before it finds a way up. We can't beat it. Trust me on that.

JAMES:

Mind telling me what exactly is going on?

Panel 2

Sara and James turn their attention to each other.

SARA:

Long story. These creatures are hunting a bunch of kids. I've been running round all night, getting people to safety, dodging werewolves, and—

SARA:

Look, you really don't need to get involved in this, but—

JAMES:

But you need help. And helping people is my job.

CAPTION (James's journal):

No need to tell her that this is my first night on the job.

Panel 3

They begin to walk away.

JAMES:

But I'm really not using... that name. You can call me—

JAMES:

James.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Goodbye secret identity. I should have thought that through a bit better, but I can't use his name yet.

Panel 4

Close on JAMES and SARA looking over their shoulders as they hear the K-Man behind them.

SARA:

I'm Sara.

K-MAN (off panel):

Rrrrrrrrrrrrrr

SARA:

And can we consider running now?

JAMES:

You can run in those heels?

Panel 5

James and Sara running through the streets. Possibly a long, high POV to illustrate how small and alone they are.

SARA:

Hey! I like these boots.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Not really a bad way to start out...

PAGE SIX. Six panels.

Panel 1

Exterior establishing shot of ST MARTIN'S CHURCH. It's big, solid, old-looking. Kind of grim and foreboding in the street light. No light from within it. The surrounding street is deserted.

FROM INSIDE CHURCH:

Must you do that?

Panel 2

Inside the church. It's dimly lit—streetlight coming from outside. The church is obviously disused. There are wooden benches, but none of the other church accoutrements.

FRED, JEROME, and CHI-YUN are here and all obviously ill-at-ease. Fred is smoking (as usual). (Must get away from this smoking-in-every-panel thing. It's getting a bit heavy-handed.) Fred and Jerome are facing off. Chi-Yun stands a little apart.

JEROME:

—This is a house of God!

CHI-YUN (softly):

plus it's kinda illegal

Panel 3

Close on Fred and Jerome, in each other's faces.

FRED:

First, nobody put you in charge. Second, I do what I want. And three, why the hell are we in a church anyway?

JEROME:

Lad, I told you. On holy ground we are safe from the werewolf.

Panel 4

More of them arguing. Widen to include Chi-Yun. Fred is looking at Chi-Yun. He's pointing to his temple and making circling motions: "loony".

FRED:

Yeah, right. Werewolf.

CHI-YUN:

But I think that's for vampires, not werewolves. And for highlanders, of course.

Panel 5

Still in the church. Note that, despite his attitude, Fred is grinding his cigarette out.

FRED (softly):

Just great. I'm stuck with Sir Loony of London and his kid sidekick Loonette.

CHI-YUN (softly):

"...in the end there can be only one..." hahaha

JEROME:

I have fought this creature. You would not laugh if you had seen it!

CHI-YUN:

Me too! It ripped my stomach open!

Panel 6

The other two look at Chi-Yun. Obviously a bit skeptical. Chi-Yun looks down at her remarkably intact abdomen.

CHI-YUN:

Oh. Well—

SFX:

THUD

SFX:

THUD

SFX:

THUD

PAGE SEVEN. Three panels.

Panel 1

Fred, Chi-Yun, and Jerome all look at the big wooden door.

THROUGH DOOR:

Guys! Let me in!

Panel 2

Fred is moving towards the door.

CHI-YUN:

Not by the hair of my chinny-chin—

FRED:

It's Sara.

CHI-YUN:

I knew that!

Panel 3

Fred has obviously let Sara and James in. Sara shuts the door. This is our first view of the whole group together, so should be a pretty big panel.

FRED:

Halloween come early this year?

SARA:

Fred... he's here to help, ok? Any sign of the—

JEROME:

No. We are safe for now.

CAPTION (James's journal):

The English guy is Jerome. The other one must be Fred. The girl is Chi-Yun. Sara didn't tell me much else. Or give me any idea of why the—thing—is chasing them. Werewolves! Why couldn't it just be robots or radioactive mutants?

PAGE EIGHT. Five panels.

Panel 1

Sara moves into the church, looking around. The others are busy sizing each other up.

JEROME:

But soon we will have to confront it.

CHI-YUN:

Guhh! No thanks!

SARA:

Not it. Them.

Panel 2

Still generally standing around in the church.

JAMES:

How many?

SARA:

I don't know. At least two. Probably more.

JEROME:

Ah—

Panel 3

Jerome is moving towards a big, solid-looking bench near the main door. He motions to James.

JEROME:

You, sir, help me put this bench in front of the door

JAMES:

Pew.

Panel 4

Jerome and James are, with some effort, lifting the PEW.

JEROME:

Very well, Pew, help me <hufff> put this bench in front of the door.

JAMES:

No <uhhh> the bench is a—

Panel 5

Close up of Jerome and James sharing a "bonding" moment. Both grinning like idiots.

JAMES:

James.

JEROME:

Honoured, James. I am Jerome Sanders.

PAGE NINE. Five panels.

Panel 1

Fred watches James and Jerome block the door with the bench, er, pew.

FRED:

Changed your mind about fighting them? Big surprise.

JEROME:

My first concern is to protect the women.

FRED:

Yeah, right! What century are you from?

Panel 2

Close on Sara and Chi-Yun. We should still be able to see Fred and Jerome in the background. Jerome has said something that Fred finds funny.

FRED:

hahahaha

CHI-YUN:

What are we going to do?

SARA:

We wait. For my friend Don.

Panel 3

The others coming over to join SARA and CHI-YUN

FRED (softly):

seventeenth... good one...

JAMES:

Don?

SARA:

He's meeting us here. Don't worry, he's good at fighting monsters.

Panel 4

They are still in the church.

SARA:

Ok, ok, I know this all sounds—But Don will explain it all much better than I can—and—

JAMES:

How soon will he get here?

Panel 5

Close-up on Fred, frowning. Maybe the others in the background, if not then Sara's speech can come from off-panel.

SARA:

I don't know. Soon. I don't know. Hopefully before they find us.

FRED:

Guys—

PAGE TEN. Five panels.

Panel 1

Wide panel, very close on Fred's eyes. We're going to continue using the eyes to indicate his psychic powers working, at least till I think of a better way to do it. Anyway, there are two K-Men in human form "reflecting" in his pupils.

FRED:

—They're already here.

Panel 2

Still on Fred's eyes. And there are now four K-Men.

FRED:

And there are more than two of them.

Panel 3

The whole group staring at Fred.

SARA:

Are you sure?

JAMES:

How do you know?

CHI-YUN:

I don't hear anyth—

SFX:

CRASH!!!

Panel 4

Jerome taking charge, moving towards the main door, pointing at the others.

JEROME:

Fred, see if there is a side chapel for the women to hide in—

SARA:

Hey!

JEROME:

James, help me cover the—

SFX:

SMAAAAAAASH!!!

Panel 5

Their POV looking back towards the big, high window—the one above the altar—which has shattered most spectacularly. Shards of glass are still falling through the air. Two K-Men (in wolfman form) are perched on the sill, poised to leap down into the church.

JEROME:

Oh, dear God.

PAGE ELEVEN. Three panels.

Panel 1

Our gang looking small and defenceless in the big old church, as the two K-Men drop to the ground and another appears in the window. James is the only one looking away from the window (actually looking back at the main door, which we can't see).

SARA:

Ok, it looks bad, but—

CHI-YUN:

—It is bad!

SFX:

KA-RASH

JAMES:

It's worse.

Panel 2

Remember the big solid door with the big solid bench in front of it? It's now a big un-solid hole. Three K-Men have KA-RASHED their way in.

No dialogue.

Panel 3

BIG FIGHT!!!! While Chi-Yun and Fred don't do much, Sara, James and Jerome take on the first wave of K-Men. But it should be obvious they are on the defensive. Dodging and blocking and not striking back.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Jerome's a pro and Sara has some nice moves, but three against six is not good. And, boy, these things are tough.

PAGE TWELVE. Seven panels.

Panel 1

Close on Sara, from behind, as she sidesteps an attack. The phone in her back jeans pocket is ringing.

SARA (thought):

Anytime now would be good Don.

SFX (lettering should be a "wavy" line and should include little musical notes, as it's the musical ringtone):

la la at the copa copacabana cha cha

Panel 2

Sara has her phone to her ear.

SARA (yelling):

Don! We're—

FROM PHONE:

You're surrounded. Come out the North door. It's the only clear route.

Panel 3

Sara looking at the others (who are retreating before the menacing K-Men). Jerome is pointing to a small door on the North wall.

SARA:

Rescue's here guys! Where's the North door?

JEROME:

There! But I have tried it—it is locked.

Panel 4

Close on Chi-Yun looking at the door.

CHI-YUN (thought):

Elephant.

Panel 5

Chi-Yun begins to run towards the door.

No dialogue.

Panel 6

Chi-Yun still running, and changing. Her skin should take on a grey hue, and her upper body is kind of bigger, more solid. More muscular. Like Chi-Yun on steroids. Not a hugely exaggerated change, but enough for the reader to see that something is happening.

No dialogue.

Panel 7

Chi-Yun hits the solid-looking door and smashes through it. Splintered wood flying everywhere.

SFX:

CRASH!!!

PAGE THIRTEEN. One panel.

Panel 1

Time for a big splash panel. Exterior of the church. Sara, Chi-Yun (looking normal again), James, Fred, and Jerome pour out of the smashed doorway. And driving up to meet them, probably skidding in some dramatic fashion, is Don's RV. It's a huge van, painted dark green. The side door is swinging open. DON is driving it, though we may not see him, depending on the angle.

SARA (yelling):

Don!

DON (yelling from inside van):

In in in!

PAGE FOURTEEN. Six panels.

Panel 1

The group is piling in. Should be very confused; Don has only stopped for a second. In the background we can probably see the K-Men emerging from the church.

DON (yelling from inside van):

Everybody hold on!

Panel 2

Don's POV as he looks back over his shoulder. There is a tangle of bodies in the cramped quarters behind him. Sara is looking towards him and pointing (actually at something we don't see in front of the vehicle).

DON:

And shut the—

SARA (yelling):

Don!

Panel 3

Close on Don looking forward again. Panicked look.

DON:

Ohhh—

Panel 3

Exterior shot. The RV crashing into a K-MAN, which bounces off.

SFX:

SMACK

Panel 4

Interior again, Don looking into the back of the vehicle.

DON:

Don't worry! We're armored! All-over bullet-pr—

SFX (from somewhere in the back):

Smash

DON (softly):

Damn. That's gonna cost.

Panel 5

In the back, a side window has been punched in. A K-Man arm is reaching through it and grabbing Fred. James brings the edge of his shield sharply down on the K-Man's wrist.

FRED:

Aaaaaaaaaa!

CAPTION (James's journal):

But not claw-proof. I wonder if he read the owner's manual?

Panel 6

Exterior shot of a K-Man falling away from the broken window.

CAPTION (James's journal):

They were overconfident. They had us outnumbered and outclassed. We wouldn't have lasted two seconds if they had treated us as a serious threat.

CAPTION (James's journal):

We got lucky.

PAGE FIFTEEN. Eight panels.

Panel 1

Sara climbing into the passenger seat next to Don.

SARA:

Good rescue.

DON:

Thanks. It's my speciality. You ok?

Panel 2

Sara sitting looking back over her shoulder. Don regarding her (not the road!) and yes, there is probably affection (and relief!) in his smile.

SARA:

It was pretty close a couple of times but—

SARA:

—But I found all three of them—and kinda ran into—a guy—and—

Panel 3

Sara looking at Don, huge grin on her face. Don watches the road, impassive.

SARA:

—Don, it was so good! I was the best! That was the most fun since—

DON:

It's not a game, Sara.

Panel 4

Sara looks away, out of her window.

SARA (softly):

Sorry.

Panel 5

Same positions.

DON:

Sara?

SARA:

Hmmm?

Panel 6

Close on Sara, looking out of the window. Actually looking at her reflection. And she has a big smile on her face.

DON (off-panel):

You done good.

Panel 7

Exterior of the vehicle, merging into traffic on the highway.

DON (from vehicle):

Nice boots.

SARA (from vehicle):

Don't start.

Panel 8

The vehicle moving into the distance, almost lost in the stream of traffic, obviously safe.

VOICE (from vehicle):

Are we there yet?

PAGE SIXTEEN. Five panels.

Panel 1

The conference room "elsewhere", as seen in the previous issue. We see the GENERAL, from behind, looking at the big electronic map display. The light over Los Angeles is still red. Next to it (superimposed on the map) a "window" has opened that shows the face of a K-Man (human form). You know, it's like a videophone picture that they have in these high-tech things.

Throughout this scene the General should be in silhouette and his uniform is never seen clearly. We shouldn't be able to see that he's a general, let alone which army he might belong to.

CAPTION:

Elsewhere.

GENERAL:

You lost them.

K-MAN:

I take full responsibility, Sir.

Panel 2

Close-up on the K-Man's video image.

K-MAN:

My team was overconfident. We didn't have transport close enough. We expected frightened kids, not—

GENERAL (off-panel):

Did any of your team get a look at this rescuer?

K-MAN:

No, Sir.

Panel 3

Wider view, showing a new video window opening next to the K-Man. In this, we see the face of the HACKER from last issue. He's probably eating pizza.

SFX:

ping

GENERAL (off-panel):

Have you found that vehicle?

Panel 4

Close-up of the Hacker's face.

HACKER:

Nuh-uh. It's like it never existed. No records, no history, doesn't show up on any logs or traffic monitors. Sweet piece of concealment.

Panel 5

Full view again, showing the General with the Hacker and K-Man on their respective video screens.

GENERAL:

Gentlemen, you will find it. If it buys gas, if it passes a traffic sensor, if it pays a toll, if it's logged at a drive-through, I want to know about it. And when you find it, don't lose it again. Are we clear, gentlemen?

K-MAN:

Yes, Sir.

HACKER:

I'm running worms through the whole Net. But somebody's countering me. Wiping out the data trail as soon as it's created. Somebody good.

PAGE SEVENTEEN. Seven panels.

The dialogue on this page should be displayed as Chinese characters, with an English translation directly beneath each speech bubble. (Note: The Chinese given in this script may not be very accurate.)

Panel 1

Very tight view of the face of SPIRIT. We saw her briefly last issue, but this should be the first clear view of her face. She's Chinese (actually half-Chinese, thus her unusual hair colour), young (like 20-ish), and attractive. Her eyes are closed and her face is serene—as if meditating.

CAPTION (voice-over, continuing the Hacker's speech):

"Possibly the best I've ever seen."

CAPTION:

China.

Panel 2

Same view. Spirit's eyes open and she looks to her right.

No dialogue.

Panel 3

Wide view. She's kneeling on the ground, outdoors. Green grass, morning sun, mountains in the background (that would be to the west, i.e. the Sun is in front of her). This is outside Spirit's cave. The old MONK from last issue has placed a small cup of tea on the grass at her side.

MONK:

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

I disturbed you.

SPIRIT:

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

No. I have finished.

Panel 4

Close up on the Monk.

MONK:

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

And what did you find?

SPIRIT (off-panel):

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

It's so hard at this distance. I think they are all safe. I don't sense death.

Panel 5

Close on Spirit. Brow furrowed.

SPIRIT:

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

But the enemy works on so many fronts. And there is only one of me.

Panel 6

We see, for the first time, the laptop computer on the grass in front of where Spirit kneels. She gestures at it.

SPIRIT:

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

They have a hacker. He's good, and I can't devote my full attention to blocking him.

MONK (off-panel):

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

You try too hard. You can't do everything.

Panel 7

Close up on Spirit again, looking up at the Monk. Still troubled.

SPIRIT:

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

If not me, then who?

PAGE EIGHTEEN. Five panels.

Panel 1

The RV driving down an un-lit side road. Passing two signs: "CRYSTAL LAKE CAMP GROUND" and: "CLOSED KEEP OUT".

CAPTION (voice-over, continuing Spirit's speech):

Chinese dialogue (translation below)

TRANSLATION:

"Somebody has to protect them until they can protect themselves."

Panel 2

The RV has stopped at an old camp ground. Some benches, tables, etc, but all overgrown. Surrounded by trees. The full Moon shines on a small lake. The group is getting out of the vehicle.

DON:

We should be safe here—for a while.

JAMES:

I'd like an explanation of what's going on.

Panel 3

James and Don confronting each other.

DON:

And I'd like to know where you got that costume.

JAMES:

That's my business.

CAPTION (James's journal):

I don't think he likes me.

Panel 4

James and Don facing off, tense. SARA can be seen in the background, looking over some sort of fire pit.

SARA:

Anybody want marshmallows?

Panel 5

The tension is broken. Don turns away.

DON:

All right, people. You deserve an explanation. Let's eat, and I'll tell you everything I can.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Or just doesn't trust me? Did he know my father? Is this the Don?

PAGE NINETEEN. Eight panels.

This is a "talking heads" kind of page. So apart from the establishing shot of the campfire, it will have a lot of small panels with close-ups of the gang.

Panel 1

The group sits around a campfire in the moonlight. Possibly eating. (Note that in this panel, and at any other time where food is involved, Chi-Yun shouldn't be eating meat.)

JAMES:

So—about these werewolves...

DON:

They are not werewolves. As far as I know, there is no such thing as a werewolf.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Well that's a relief.

Panel 2

Everybody looks at Sara.

SARA:

Hey!

SARA:

Well, ok, but I had to say something to get everybody together—and you wouldn't have believed what they really are!

Panel 3

Close up on Fred. Rolling his eyes.

FRED:

Something more unbelievable than werewolves?

Panel 4

Close up on Don.

DON:

Aliens.

Panel 5

Close up on Fred. Looking heavenward.

FRED:

Ok—you got me there.

Panel 6

Close up on Don.

DON:

The wolfman is their true appearance. The human form, that's a holographic image. So they can pass among us. Technology. Nothing supernatural.

Panel 7

Close on Jerome.

JEROME:

I don't understand this hol—this image you mention. Are you saying they can be killed by normal weapons?

DON (off panel):

Sure, yeah, if it's a big enough weapon. You've seen how tough they are.

Panel 8

Close on JAMES

JAMES:

Why don't you start from the beginning? Why are they after these people?

PAGE TWENTY. One panel.

Unfortunately, more exposition. To give some variety, we'll have this one as a single big panel, or fancy mix of panels, with a montage of images showing what DON is talking about (action scenes of the K-Men) and showing the group's shocked reactions.

Don's words are probably "disembodied" over the top of the images, and interspersed with James's commentary on what he's saying.

Panel 1

CAPTION (James's journal):

And so he tells us. The others find it hard to swallow.

DON:

We call them the Krai. They come from a vast, powerful empire. Somewhere out there. We don't know how many there are on Earth.

CAPTION (James's journal):

But I believe him. Because most of it fits with my father's journal entries.

DON:

And they are after you because—because you are special people. Because of the powers you have.

CAPTION (James's journal):

If this is the Don, my father trusted him with his life. So I have to trust him too.

DON:

Your story really starts twenty years ago. There was some kind of ... cosmic ... thing ... and—

CAPTION (James's journal):

My father called it The Event. He saved the world, but to do it he sacrificed every hero on the planet. I think that's why he retired.

DON:

It triggered an evolutionary change. A new generation with superhuman abilities. You kids are among the first to develop them.

DON:

You might not have felt them yet. Or you might be hiding them. That's your choice. But the Krai can detect them in you. And they know you are dangerous to their plans.

DON:

And it's my job to keep you out of their hands. That's why I've been working with Sara. Why I sent her to find you.

PAGE TWENTY-ONE. Five panels.

Panel 1

Close up of Fred.

FRED:

Let's assume we have these powers. It's your job to save us... so you can use us? We become your soldiers in a war against aliens?

Panel 2

Close up on DON.

DON:

God, no! I'm not here to recruit you, or force you to fight. I'm here to save your lives. To help you if I can. And teach you if you'll let me.

Panel 3

DON's POV looking at the circle of anxious faces over the embers of the camp fire.

DON:

I know how it sounds. But you've seen the Krai. You know what they can do. Return to your old lives, and they'll hunt you down. The option I'm giving you—it's your best chance.

Panel 4

Angle on FRED and CHI-YUN.

CHI-YUN:

Go on the run? Leave our families behind?

FRED (softly):

Don't have anyone to leave.

CHI-YUN (softly):

Run for the rest of our lives?

Panel 5

Close up on DON. He's hating this...

DON:

I can't make promises. But your best chance is with me. With each other.

PAGE TWENTY-TWO. Four panels.

Panel 1

JAMES's POV, looking at the others. No-one looks happy as this sinks in.

CAPTION (James's journal):

I'm not part of this. I have no powers. No one's hunting me. I can take this mask off, go home, and live happily ever after.

Panel 2

Close up of SARA, playing with a stick in the fire.

CAPTION (James's journal):

But not while these people need me.

Panel 3

Close up on the SHIELD which JAMES has never let out of his hands.

CAPTION (James's journal):

That's not what he would do.

Panel 4

Wide shot as DON stands and stretches.

DON:

It's a lot to take in. Sleep on it. We need to start out in the morning. One way or the other.

CAPTION (James's journal):

Looking at their faces, I already know what the answers will be. We'll all be starting out. Together.

Next issue: Trust

See also: Don's mission report; Los Angeles Globe news headlines

Copyright © 2001, 2002, 2008, 2016 by David Meadows. All rights reserved.