The Marvelous- Chapter 1
Written by Bodhi Ouellette
New York City:
Grant Kemsley entered into his apartment, distraught and exhausted. Dirt and rubble was smeared all over his body, falling off of him as he wandered in his home like dust. Immediately he turned on his television. A special "Breaking News" segment from his de facto news station as well as his employer; The Daily Bugle. The female newscaster, like Grant himself, also looked saddened; it was obvious that she had shed some tears from her eyes in the proceeding minutes that have passed. To the right of her displayed ongoing footage of what looked like a white giant spherical orb fixed in the sky above the middle of the whole city. Below her was a byline with text scrolling left to right, displaying "BREAKING NEWS- SHIP IN THE SKY EXPLODES. LARGE MAJORITY OF SUPERHEROES DEAD". The newscaster cleared her throat as she began an attempt to speak to any who are watching.
"For those of you who are just broadcasting in," the female newscaster started, choking up near the end. She placed her hand on her chest to clear her throat again, and then exhaled to calm down. "...If you are not aware of what has happened… a large floating orb in the sky hovered above New York City, threatened to destroy the entire Earth. A large team of the worlds greatest superheroes went in the ship to stop it, but… the ship exploded…" she couldn't stop herself from tearing up again, but as a newscaster, it was her duty to report this news. "... the ship exploded, with all of those superheroes inside of it. The estimate amount of heroes that were killed so far seemed to be closing in on the hundred. We'll update more once we get more information. Excuse me, I really need a moment." The newscaster bolted out of her chair and out of the frame of the camera. Grant started flipping through the other channels to see what they were reporting on. They were all reporting the exact same thing. "SUPERHEROES DEAD!" "HUNDREDS OF SUPERHEROES DEAD!" "LARGE ORB IN SKY KILLS SUPERHEROES!"
Grant got up from his couch to see outside his apartment window; the sky was a dark cloudy orange, with a view of that chalk white orb that hovered in the sky. He could see military helicopters approaching the orb, and ambulance trucks passing by on the road. Looking around the window a little bit more, he could see the total devastation that New York was in. Buildings had been damaged, and roads obliterated. There are still a large amount of people still out, wandering the wrecked Manhattan. Grant turned away, he couldn't bear looking at the disaster anymore. When he entered into his bedroom, he glanced past his laptop, laying on his desk, before he plumped himself on his bed. Moments passed of Grant digesting what he saw this day. He couldn't believe that the heroes, the very people he had spent more than a year with, discussing their lives and what it really means to be a hero... are all gone. Dead. But not without merits. They did not die an un-meaningful death, they died saving New York, and for that matter, the whole world. Their legacy could not be forgotten.
In already troubling times, there needs to be those who can keep hope alive. With the heroes dead, Grant felt it was his duty to help keep it alive. He rose up from his bed to stare at his laptop again, then he got up off of his bed and pulled the chair to his desk out, and sat down in it. Grant opened up his laptop to be faced with the screen of one of his documents full of notes he's transferred over. He moved the cursor over at the top of the doc, highlighting the option 'NEW DOC'. A new window opened, with a blank white page. His hands were on the keyboard as he went on to type his first sentence.
"Why do we need superheroes?"
New York City; One Year Earlier:
Grant Kemsley was just your ordinary young journalist, with ambitions of getting the job of a lifetime. He was around his mid twenties, with short slicked black hair, and was about 5, 7 in height, and usually wore his clothes in a professional manner- like a reporter would- and carried around a leather satchel, which held his laptop, notepad and other things. Grant had been working at the Daily Bugle, after recommendation from his college teacher, Ben Urich, a former reporter at the Bugle suggested Grant's work to Editor-in-Chief Joe "Robbie" Robertson. His work must have been good enough for Robbie to have hired Grant as a journalist at the Daily Bugle.
Grant entered into the main doors of the Daily Bugle building. Panting, his sweaty hands pressed the "Up" button on the elevator. As far as Grant felt, that elevator was taking it's sweet time arriving down at the bottom floor. "Come on, come on!" he thought to himself. "I'm running late again." He looked down at his watch; 8:57, three minutes until he was officially late. He couldn't afford to come in late again, especially in his third week at the Bugle. Besides, he had to pass in his news report, discussing the rising poverty rising in Manhattan. The light above the elevator, indicating the floor level blinks on the first floor icon. "Finally," he thought. Grant proceeded into the elevator, and swiftly pressed the button with the number 23 on it. He had hoped that there wouldn't be anyone that would come onto the elevator at the moment, but alas, Grant was not a lucky person. Over five people loaded into the elevator, crowding around Grant, with the buttons "4", "12", and "19". The elevator doors closed, and the elevator began to move up the building towards the destinations.
Grant hated being around unfamiliar faces, especially in closed environments like elevators. Really, he just hated being in an elevator all together: the crowding how everyone smells like they never take a shower or they sprayed too much perfume on them, not to mention Grant had a mild motion sickness. And he especially hated the sudden STOPS. The elevator stopped at the 4th level, and one of the people exited out. The elevator continued up to it's destinations, until eventually all of the people except Grant got off.
The elevator reached the 23rd Floor. The doors opened and Grant rushed out, making his way to the E.I.C. Office. The Daily Bugle was populous and busy, as usual, with reporters rushing around the offices passing papers to each other and searching for information on their computers. Grant finally approached the doors of Robbie Robertson and proceeded into his office. Robbie looked up at Grant, then looked down at his watch to check the time.
"8:59," Robbie stated. "You just made it."
"I know, and I'm sorry for almost being late with the deadline again, Mr. Robertson," Grant replied with the utmost sincerity.
"Did you get the story done?" Robbie asked.
"Sure did," Grant responded. He pulled over his satchel and grabbed his fully printed story out and placed it down on Robbie's desk. "I made sure to print it this time, and to give you the right story to you as well."
"Excellent," Robbie said, as he started skimming through his story. "You've got some very good points in here, Grant. Plenty of information, including arguments and counter arguments." He stopped reading for a moment. "Hm. Though there's one thing that I don't agree on."
"That being?" Grant asked.
"Your statement on how superheroes have a large part in the downfall of New York's tourism and declining population, not to mention the cities economic stances right now."
"Well, as I've pointed out in my story, there's a fair amount of evidence that proves that with New York being obliterated every single week, the amount of tourism has decreased, more people are moving out of the city, and the amount of collateral damage sustained by the battles made between superheroes and villains that it might just cause the downfall of New York City."
"There's no doubt about that," agreed Robbie. "It's just my opinion. At least you keep an open mind about the evidence you gave." Robbie placed the story on his desk and got up from his chair, and walked over to the window, as he leaned against it with his right arm. "What are your opinions on superheroes, Grant?"
"My thoughts? Well, I'm not someone who thinks they're all bad if that's what you think. But I see them as doing their duty by saving lives and stopping the Earth from getting destroyed every Tuesday. Is it because of my story that you asked me?"
"Partially," Robbie answered, "Because I'm about to offer you a big assignment."
"Big assignment?" stated Grant. "What for?"
"Well, I feel that with an open mind like you have on superheroes, that I could give this specific assignment to you. You're teacher Ben Urich thought of this up when he met up with the Avengers once, but he doesn't have the time to do it, so I might as well give it to you."
"I'm flattered. What's the assignment?"
"The people want to know more about the lives of these superheroes. They want to know a little bit more about the people who save millions of lives every week. I think that you'd be capable of this offering."
"I'd love to," Grant answered. "When do I start?"
"First I've got to tell Mr. Stark that I've got a man to do the job," Robbie explained, "Then I'll assign you some dates that you'll be going to meet with them. Any other people you'd want to interview is on you."
"Well, then I should go and get myself prepared. Thanks, Mr. Robertson."
"Please, Grant. Call me Robbie."
Mack's Coffee House, Soho; The Next Day:
The premiere breakfast and lunch restaurant to go to in Soho. A hot spot for late teenagers and younger adults, the restaurant had a soft brown and yellow color scheme, and was big enough to hold over fifty customers at a time. No matter what day it was, business boomed, which is why Grant tried his best to get to Mack's Coffee House at a reasonable time to get decent seats for him and his friends. Every Wednesday, Grant and a three of his friends get together at the coffee house to meet and talk and discuss. Grant was the one who'd be at the coffee house before the others in order to get the table they usually get, beside the window. However this time, Grant was not the first one to arrive at the Coffee House. He walked in to see all three of his friends; Mark Coney, a redhead with pale skin and usually wore button up shirts, who worked in accounting, Kelly Lenzi, an Arabic female dressed in casual clothes working as a nurse training to be a doctor, and Brian Resnik, a detective working at the New York Police Department, with a clean cut haircut and wearing "detective" clothes. They all turned around to stare at Grant. "You're late," stated Brian.
"Yeah, sorry about this guys," Grant apologized, as he took a seat next to Mark, right next to the window. "Had to get some research done for my next assignment at the Daily Bugle."
"Hold up," said Kelly, "What about your story you've been working on now? Have you passed it in?"
"Yeah, yesterday morning," replied Grant. "Why did you think that I'd wouldn't pass it in?"
"Well, you have a tendency on starting projects and not getting them done," Mark said with snide.
"That's different. That's me reworking books and stories hundreds of times, like all writers go through. These are reports I'm doing."
"Whatever," Mark said. "What's your new thing about?"
"Well, my boss offered me a really big project, about all things superheroes-"
"Oh, great," Brian muttered under his breath.
"What's the problem?" Kelly asked him.
"You know how I feel about those guys around this city," Brian explained. "Not a week goes by and they blow up another city block in New York."
"Well that's one thing that I talked about in my report I passed in to my boss. What are the reasons why Manhattan's global tourism and economy is down."
"What is the assignment all about?" Kelly asked. "What about the superheroes?"
"Their daily lives, what the people of New York think about them, and a bunch of other things, but that's the basic jist of it. It's a big project, and he offered me to it, so I figured why not take the challenge?"
"I'm excited," said Mark. "I think you'll do great on it."
"Mark, I doubt you've even read any of my work."
"... Yeah, you're right."
"And I don't plan to now."
"To be honest, I'm not the biggest fan of superheroes either. Especially since they've destroyed my apartment twice. Twice!"
"Look, I don't think we're in the mood to be arguing about why superheroes are bad or not," Kelly stated. "Let's just enjoy our lunch and save this discussion for another day."
"Kelly Lenzi, the Peacemaker!" Grant joked.
"I try my best."
Brian looked over at the television screen playing on the wall. A press conference coming from Mayor Sterling Brook was taking place, and the customers eyed their attention over to the television screen. The volume turned up to hear the Mayor speak.
"Citizens of Manhattan," started Mayor Brook, "I am here to make a daring claim; as you all know, this great city has been going through a steady decline, in both a decrease in population, and in economical stances. And I am here to give you my thoughts on this. I am working very hard trying to bring back the spirit of New York City back, but I am being held back, and it's all because of one group of people, people who have been in this city protecting us for years now, but they must be called out; these people, are superheroes!
"Oh, crap," Grant thought to himself. "Just my freaking luck."
"Well what do you know, Kelly," snited Mark. "I guess the Peacemaker couldn't stop the wrath of Mayor Brook now, could she?"
And there was the first issue of "The Marvelous". I hoped you enjoyed it, as I did writing it. Please comment on what you liked, what you disliked, what I can improve on, and any other thoughts you had on this, as well as Following and Favoring this story! Updates on this story and all of my other stories are gonna be wonky due to my commitments with DC Prime (a fan-fiction community in which you should all check out for yourselves) as well as running my YouTube channel, stuff on my FictionPress account, and any school work or school related things that come across, but I'll promise not to abandon this, whatever it takes.