I can see it now. Superhero goes too far. About a year ago, I moved my consciousness into a nightmare my mother was having. It was the second power I experienced. Imagine, experiencing someone's most raw subconscious attacking you and someone you care about. My mother's sleep paralysis demon was sitting on her chest, taunting her. I could never forget her beautiful brown eyes drowned out by the whites in her eyes looking at me with so much fear and hopelessness. The creatures skin sagged off of its bones. It sat on her chest leaning over her just staring. The feeling of a dream feels different when it's not yours. None of the tunnel vision blurring of objects or the out of body feeling. I was grounded fully in control.
"Get off her!" I yelled. The shockwave from my voice knocked the creature to the side. It slowly turned its head toward me and in a quick motion its unnaturally long legs and arms unfolded creaking and clicking. It towered over me and pointed.
"You are not the dreamer, leave now" the creatures voice seemed to slither through the air every word slowly and seemingly painfully enunciated. That confirmed it I was in a dream which meant. He wasn't real or so I thought.
"No, I belong here, you don't, leave her alone." "She is tortured in life and so I feed it is my right now go interloper or I will cast my paralysis upon you."
I took a step forward not knowing what I was going to do but as long as the creature wasn't on my mother. I ran forward, but the creatures hand reached out in a choking gesture. My body froze "I warned you interloper. Now I will feed on you."
Suddenly the paralysis took complete hold, and I began to curl into a ball. The sound of a freight train began to grow louder and louder. It felt like a living darkness was washing over me. I couldn't move I couldn't speak I couldn't breathe.
"Now let's see what's torturing you." I felt the creature slowly climb on my back, its weight slowly crushing me "You fear your new power, you fear for your mother, you fear being out of control."
I paid thousands of dollars for a counselor to figure that out. This thing could make a killing in psychology. "Even now you hold back your power. Why? You humans are blessed but do nothing with your blessings. oh well, continue to do nothing. I will feed on your fear indefinitely."
The creature was right I was holding back but why? Why would I hold back in a dream? I tightened my body and gathered my strength. This wasn't real I couldn't hurt anyone , but I might hurt that thing. The creatures hold grew but it didn't matter. Ladies and gentlemen introduce you to Radiance. A light brighter and hotter that the surface of the sun. The energy erupted from my body sending arms up i to the air knocking the creatures off of me and turning him to ash before he hit the ground. My power had saved me and knocked back onto my body. My eyes opened to the roof of my room. I jumped up and ran to my mother's room. My mother was sitting up in bed drinking water visibly shaken.
"Mom are you ok!" "Yes, baby I'm ok just had one of my spells again, but it was different this time. I saw you there as clear as day" she said taking another sip of water. "Why do you look so worried" she asked picking up on my breathing.
"It's nothing I'm just glad you're ok." " I'm fine baby" she said placing her hand on my cheek. Is everything ok is there anything stressing you out." I asked.
She laid the glass of water on the table "There's this horrible man at work. Hes been firing people who are about to retire or making their job so hard, they quit." I remembered a man arguing with my mother one day when I picked her up.
"Is it that man that you were arguing with when I picked you up." " Yup that's him, Mr. Harper. I pray for that man every night Thaddeus. He needs the lord."
"I think he needs to meet the Lord." I said to myself.
"I don't know how you do it mom. There's no way I would pray for a man like that." I said. "Thaddeus those are the people who need prayer the most." She coughed hard into a tissue, her frail body retching. She wiped her lips trying to hide the blood she coughed up.
"Mom, are you taking the meds?"
"Yes, but those things haven't been working for weeks. Don't worry I'll be fine."
"Mom you aren't fine"
My mother looked at me with the same look she's given me since I was a kid. The one that says you have just crossed a line boy. I grabbed the water and raised it to her mouth. She gently grabbed my hand
"I know you have gifts Thaddeus you should share that light with everyone." I tried to hide my expression, but she read me.
"It was my dream boy I know my baby boy when I see him. " I brushed her hair to the side and leaned in to give her a kiss on the forehead. "I Love you mom" It was the last time I kissed my mother. She died the next day.
Over the course of a year, I developed my abilities and learned new ones including flight. Fighting crime has its challenges. The main one being the judge and jury and wanting to be an executioner. Crossing that line would be so easy, but whenever I get to the edge, I hear my mother's words "Those are the people who need prayer the most. I went by the name Flare. Black fatigue pants. Black hoodie and black boots. A functional uniform. I was not putting on spandex or tights. One day my friend and partner messaged me that there was an assault at Cube the same admin firm my mother worked for. The building hadn't changed and one more thing hadn't changed. Mr. Harper was still there making people's lives a living hell. As I approached the building I saw Harper the man that made my mothers life and so many other people's lives hell. I approached Harper not sure if I was going to hit him or help him. I chose help and asked the same question I asked everyone.
"How can I help" I asked.
"A variant? No, I want the real police."
This is one call I didn't want. I remember wishing that he was the criminal not the victim. Victim? People like him don't get to be victims; they should be deserving recipients of karma.
"Fine get your nose broken again when he tracks you down."
"Wait, sorry Wait don't I know you. yeah, you're Lina's son." Harper laughed obnoxiously loud. "Man, this is too good. Your mom was the only person in this whole office kind enough to say hello to me every day. She was also the only person who got out of getting fired by dying."
"What did you say?" "Oh sorry, you aren't here for that you need to be catching the guy who assaulted me!" I took a deep breath. "How did she pray for an asshole like you." I asked. The words slipped out.
"Ha ha she prayed for me. That dumb old woman."
Without thinking I grabbed Harper and dragged his sorry behind outside.
"Apologize for what speaking my mind or telling the truth. Remember you freak you are here to help me. So, get out there and do you fricking job."
"I'm going share something with you, something my mother said. She said I should share my light with the world, but I think I'm going to give you a private show." I grabbed Harper by his collar and shot off into the sky. The coward screamed every second. I stopped at about 300 feet.
"You are the reason my mother died, but you should know something before you die. She didn't fear you instead she prayed for you because she saw how sad you really were. She saw you as a scared little boy that needed his mother. Now you're going to die a horrible death. I'm going to show you my first power. The power my mother called my light. Do you have anything to say before you die? "
Harper avoided my eyes a true sign of a coward. I unleashed my Radiance and watched as Harper flesh slowly charred. His eyes met mine, but instead of his eyes I saw my mother's beautiful brown eyes looking back at me.
"I know mom, I crossed the line."