The secret life of a student superhero

by Fidel Cadena

Elaine was never the best role model, but she certainly was one who would never give up. Many of her colleagues called her a complete klutz; there was never a day she wouldn’t trip on something or fall flat on her face. Still, Elaine never let that bring her down—well, not anymore than it already had. Elaine was a student with a secret. By day she studied for exams and hung out with friends, but by night she fought crime. Elaine was a superhero.

Elaine hardly let anything get to her, but she’d been having a pretty hectic two weeks in her secret life. School was not going as planned, work was dull and her boyfriend was moving away to another city. It certainly wasn’t a time for her to keep her usual persona in place. Elaine had no time for anyone’s incompetence. This day in particular started out extremely bad.

She woke up late and missed the bus. Elaine waited for the next one when a big wall of a man slammed into her, nearly knocking her over. She tried to brush him off, but he retaliated.

“What’s your problem?” he screamed. “Watch where you’re going!”

Elaine’s mouth started to smoke up, nearly breathing fire, but she glared at him instead.

“You do not want to mess with me today,” Elaine calmly said.

With fear in his eyes, the man simply turned and walked away.

Once at school, Elaine zoomed to class on her skateboard. She dodged pedestrians and other obstacles, even though they shouldn’t be in the lane specifically for bikers and boarders. She swerved and ducked as people slowly got out of her way. She nearly made it out of that mess when she slammed into a flagpole. Her board cracked at the front and her head slammed hard onto the metal. Elaine fell to the ground but quickly rolled and jumped back up. Having powers may not make her immortal, but having steel bones certainly helped.

Elaine barely made it to class on time when her classmate piped up.

“You’re bleeding,” the girl said.

She pointed at Elaine’s elbow as blood slid down her arm. Elaine pulled tissues and bandages from her backpack to pretend to fix her wound. This type of injury meant nothing to Elaine; she didn’t even feel the pain.

The professor finally arrived and asked everyone to turn in their projects.

“Holy crap,” Elaine uttered a little too loudly. It had completely slipped her mind.

Elaine decided the gym would relieve some stress. She arrived and attempted to lock up her skateboard, only to have her lock refuse to open.

“Not now,” she yelled.

A boy heard her and offered to share his lock. She couldn’t help but smile. It had been a while since she saw some small act of kindness pointed towards her.

At last she could put on her gloves to beat up the punching bags. With her super strength, she nearly punched through the bag. Elaine realized there were other people around, and she wouldn’t be able to explain a torn up punching bag. Even though she restrained herself, that first punch actually relieved her of something.

On her way home, Elaine felt her phone vibrate. She was needed elsewhere in the city and went to meet up with her fellow superheroes.

“Finally! A real way to relieve my stress,” she said.