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Chapter 11: Out From The Shadows

Written by willow :: [Sunday, 16 April 2017 23:50] Last updated by :: [Monday, 17 April 2017 00:36]

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Out From The Shadows


“This is CNN with the latest reports from Syria. For the past few days, heavy fighting enveloped the city of Aleppo turning the city into chaos as Syrian government, rebel forces, and ISIL fight for control of the city. The city had recently fallen into control of ISIL due to heavy fighting between rebel forces and the Syrian government. However, both government and rebel forces have now returned to the city’s doorstep in order to gain full control over what was once Syria’s largest city. Our embedded journalist, Jimmy Olsen, was last seen seeking cover as the fighting intensified. ISIL forces trapped within the city are making a desperate stand while invading armies are fighting both ISIL and each other. We will keep Jimmy Olsen’s safety in our thoughts and prayers, and update you as soon as we hear more from the situation on the ground.”

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I was in the air and flying towards the Middle East seconds later. The ground zoomed past me as my body hurled through the sky like a bullet at supersonic speed. At this stage, I was beyond being concerned about the public noticing me. I had to get to Syria. I had to save Jimmy. Green hills turned to mountains. Mountains gave way to green and then mountains again. An entire continent zoomed under me as I flew as fast as possible. Land disappeared leaving me above an endless ocean. In what felt like hours to me, the massive ocean was left behind to give way to what looked like an ocean of sand.

Superman’s voice buzzed in my ear, “Alright, you are almost to Aleppo in Syria. If you listen, you should be able to pick out the heavy fighting and fly towards it. Al Jazeera claims that there is heavy urban warfare going on throughout the streets.”

I slowed a bit so I could ask a question. “How do I find Jimmy in all that fighting?”

“In theory, you could try scanning the city with your x-ray vision, but that will take time that Jimmy might not have. My suggestion would be to go in guns blazing, and try to disrupt the fighting. If everyone is focusing on you, then it might put Jimmy in less danger and give you time to find him.”

“Got it.” I resumed back to my supersonic speed, and caused a loud shockwave as I broke the sound barrier second later. I followed Superman’s direction, and reached out with my super hearing. Conversations from miles away filled my ears as I reached out. Automobiles from cities. Planes flying through the air. And explosions. I focused on the multiple explosions, and turned towards its origin. It kept me flying east, and got more intense as I flew. It had to be the fighting in Aleppo.

When I came upon the city, it was unmistakable. The city was a war-torn shell that looked barely habitable or habited. Two large armies had surrounded the city on both sides. If the edges of each army were not fighting each other, I would think they are on the same side. Each side was funneling tanks, armored personnel carriers, and other equipment into the city while what appeared to be artillery was setup far outside the city and firing shells into it. Smoke was rising everywhere in the city, and I did not need super hearing to hear the constant barrage of machine gun fire. The city itself had been torn to shreds by the fighting. In the center was what appeared to be a large medieval citadel.

I reached to turn on my headset as I hovered over the city in the clear blue sky. Anyone who looked up from the city probably saw me hovering there with my red cape fluttering in the wind. “Ok, I am here. What now?”

Superman responded in my ear, “Do you see the large fortress? That is the Citadel of Aleppo. It’s an old fortress that has stood since before the Crusades. Just northwest of it is the city center with old government offices. The old, pre-war airport is to the southeast of the Citadel. The Opposition Forces are using a Military Research Center to the west as their main base of operation while Syrian Government is working out of the airport. Both forces are pushing hard to capture the city center, which recently fell to ISIL. Everyone is converging on the city center so I could start there. That is where the fighting will be the most intense.”

I did not bother to pause much longer above the city. I flew straight down into what appeared to be the city center just a few blocks north of the Citadel. My body smashed into the ground hard and sent shockwaves throughout the area. While it felt like an earthquake, most soldiers who did not see my landing probably thought it was another artillery shell. I stood among the rubble in the streets as the dust and smoke cleared from my landing. I stood there in my power suit, bare legs, cleavage exposed, and no head scarf covering my dyed blonde hair. In short, ISIL’ worst nightmare had just arrived.

It did not take long before people reacted. Two men in camouflage rushed out of the building they were hiding in, and opened fire with their machine guns. They must have thought me an easy target just standing in the middle of the street. However, the bullets from their machine guns bounced harmlessly off my body. It felt good as the hard metal struck my body with no damage to me or my suit. A couple even hit my breasts, but playtime could wait until later. I began to walk towards the two soldiers. They wore desert camouflage and had long dark beards, but I had no real idea whether they were ISIL, rebels, or Syrian government forces. In either case, best to treat everyone with a gun as the enemy. The two soldiers started to back away with some fear in their eyes as their guns clearly did nothing to me. I smiled back at them.

Before they got too far, I rushed forward at super speed and grabbed both rifles from their hands. They cried out in pain at having their weapons so violently ripped away from them. I think one of the men may have broken a finger. I took the barrels in each hand and squeezed. The metal distorted and crushed in my hands that proved more powerful and stronger than the gun’s steel. I tossed the guns to the ground, pursed my lips, and then blew hard towards the soldiers. They were unable to withstand my super breath as it called up gale force winds against them. The soldiers’ feet left the ground as they flew back, and smashed against the wall of the building they exited earlier. Both fell to the ground unconscious.

I walked down the street, and proceeded to scan the area with my x-ray vision. Walls disappeared, revealing soldiers and some civilians hiding among the buildings. I was interrupted from my scanning when something landed at my feet. I looked down to see a small hand grenade resting in between my feet. I did not bother to move as the grenade exploded between my legs. Shrapnel flew everywhere hitting my bare legs, boots, and more intimate parts of my lower body. The sensation felt good. It made me feel powerful.

Despite the smoke, I scanned the area and quickly spotted the grenade thrower. It was from a soldier in his early twenties looking down at me from the second story window. He was preparing another grenade to throw down towards me. Rather than let that happen, I shot forth a torrent of energy from my eyes towards the grenade in his hand. My heat vision quickly ignited the grenade causing it to explode next to the soldier. He did not even have time to cry out.

The explosion brought more soldiers running around the corner from a nearby street. It was a five-man squad who immediately began to open fire on me. This was clearly a “shoot first, ask questions later” kind of day for them. What angered me most was that I could easily be a civilian that they are trying to gun down. I rushed towards them at super speed. To them I was a blur. To me, time appeared to slow down as bullets zipped past my head or bounced harmlessly off my body. A second later, I was in front of the first solider. I grabbed him by his shirt, and lifted him off the ground with one arm. The other soldiers looked in shock as I held their comrade above the ground with one arm like it was nothing. I threw the soldier towards the nearby wall with enough force to hear bones crunch against concrete. The man’s body fell to the ground. The other soldiers raised their rifles to fire at me again. I rushed them too.

I grabbed the nearest soldier’s gun, and ripped it apart with both hands. A hard backslap with my hand sent the man flying into the air against the same wall his friend hit. I moved to the next soldier, and placed my open palm in front of his rifle. The bullets fired from the rifle impacted my hand, and bounced back into the rifle. The shockwave caused the rifle to explode in the man’s hands. A punch from hand took him out of the fight. I quickly grabbed the next soldier by his shoulders, and threw him through the second story windows of a building across the street. The final soldier dropped his weapon and fell to his knees, clearly pleading with me. This was a war, but I was not going to kill someone surrendering. I signaled with my eyes for the man to take off running down the street. He did not need any translation, and ran as fast as his legs would carry him.

I followed him to the next street over while resuming my scan of the buildings. I saw that one soldier had stumbled across a ground of civilians trapped in the fighting. He was pointing his gun at them, and clearly threatening to kill them. Thankfully, he was also standing by a wall. Before the soldier knew what was happening, my invulnerable body burst through the wall. The concrete stood no change against my magnificent chest as it cracked and demolished the sturdy wall. The soldier did not even have time to turn around before I grabbed him by the waist, and lifted him head first into the ceiling. His head smashed into the concrete roof. I dropped his limp body to the ground. The civilians looked at me with shock and fear in their eyes over what I just did. Before they could react, I heard the whistle of an artillery shell coming down.

I screamed, “Get down!”

The shell landed in the building next to the one that I was in. The entire building rocked. I could hear the second and third floors next door collapsing, and felt this building beginning to give way as well. I looked up to see the ceiling starting to come down. I raised my arms up and caught the ceiling as it came crashing down. I must have been an impressive sight for them to see. Standing there in my while leotard uniform while my powerful arms held up the second and third floor of the building. My muscles bulging outwards.

“Run!” I cried out to the civilians that were just standing there. I doubt they understood exactly what I said, but they clearly understood the intent. The group of huddling non-combatants made a break for the door to the streets. Just as the last of them was out the door, the concrete ceiling that I was holding cracked causing all the contents of the second and third floor to fall on top of me. I was buried under rubble. However, no mere rubble can contain or stop me. I burst out of the mountain of concrete and debris with little effort. Destroyed blocks of wall and ceiling flew out in all directions across the street. I walked out of the pile like kicking dirt around a large ant hill. As far as my muscles were concerned, it might have well been one.

The civilians that I had saved had disappeared by the time that I dug myself out of the ruins. As I looked around, I heard the sound of incoming artillery shells hurtling towards me. I looked up as time seemed to slow down for me. My super vision quickly spotted six shells coming towards me. Moving as a blur on the battlefield, I zoomed away from the area where the shells would hit. The land around where I had been standing exploded in dirt and debris. I turned another corner down a street to find myself in front of more soldiers. They had patches on their shoulders that showed the Syrian flag. The three men turned towards me with surprised looks on their faces. The one in the middle quickly lifted up what appeared to be a rocket-propelled grenade launcher and fired it directly at me. The rocket hit me squarely in the chest and exploded. I stood there and waited for the smoke to clear with my hands on my hips. As my form became visible through the smoky cloud, the soldiers’ mouths dropped to see that I was completely unharmed. The middle soldier said something in Arabic, dropped his RPG launcher, and ran for his life. The others quickly followed their friend.

I walked over to the dropped RPG launcher, and picked up it to examine it closer. The weapon felt almost weightless in my hands, and the barrel was still warm from its earlier use. I took the weapon in both hands, and slowly squeezed them together. The RPG launcher’s metal frame screamed in protest as my super-powerful muscles bent it into a U-shape until the weapon itself split in two. I squeezed the metal between both hands just for good measure to further destroy the ruined equipment. The metal oozed between my fingers. I then tossed the ruined weapon to the ground.

I scanned the building that the three soldiers had been moving towards before I had interrupted them. The building itself was mostly empty, but my x-ray vision revealed as basement full of a dozen civilians cowering for their lives. They had made a rudimentary bomb shelter with food and water, and were doing everything they could to stay out of the fighting. I felt no need to disturb them since I could not easily evacuate them from the city without endangering further.

Just as I was about to turn back towards the city center, I heard the scream of two low-flying fighter jets fly directly over my position. The jets zoomed over the city, and were quickly followed by several explosions that enveloped me and the entire block of buildings. Dust and debris flew everywhere as the sun was quickly blotted out by the explosions. The jets had unleashed a series of missiles around the area where I was standing. The buildings next to me were on the point of collapsing and burying the bomb shelter full of civilians under a mountain of rubble. If that happened, it was unlikely that anyone would find them in time before their air and food ran out.

I took to the air and hovered in the middle of the street as the building began to begin its collapse. Quickly inhaling, I blew towards the building with the strongest breath that my lungs would allow. It was not just a tornado that came out of my lungs but a hurricane of force. The building completely disintegrated under the gale force winds leaving my pursed lips. However, instead of collapsing on top of the bomb shelter, the rubble was blown into the street and other buildings behind it. Unfortunately, in saving these civilians, my super breath caused the collapse of several other nearby buildings as well. I stopped my blowing of the rubble, and flew down to toss aside the larger pieces of concrete and debris that had fallen on top of the entrance to the shelter. The heavy concrete pieces flew into the air like I was throwing around Styrofoam blocks. Seconds later, the entrance to the shelter was clear of debris so that those trapped inside could escape when the fighting died down.

With the civilians saved, I turned my attention back to the fighter jets that were circling in the sky for another pass. I jumped into the air, and flew towards them at supersonic speed. With my arms straight out in front of me, I flew directly into the wing of the first fighter jet as it turned towards me. My body sliced through the metal wing like it was paper. The wing itself tore off from the plane, which caused the jet to begin spinning in a death spiral towards the ground. The pilot was luckily able to eject out of the plane before it crashed. With one fighter jet out of the way, I turned my attention to the second airplane.

Just as I turned towards the second plane, the fighter launched one of its missiles towards me. I barely had time to move out of the way so I instead let the missile come straight at me. I stopped in mid-flight and hovered as the missile flew closer. Time slowed down as I turned my super senses and reaction up to eleven. The missile slowed down despite its incredible speed, which gave me enough time to cock my arm back and unleash a powerful punch to the missile just as it came within my arm’s reach. My fist impacted the front of the missile that dented inwards against my invulnerable knuckles. Before anything else could happen, the missile exploded in my face and washed me all over with fire. If I had not braced myself in the air, I would have been thrown backwards.

As the smoke cleared, the fighter jet flew right by me. I turned to look at the pilot who was looking to see what his missile had or had not done. I saw him visibly jump in his seat when he realized that I was still moving there as the smoke cleared. The pilot turned back towards flying his aircraft, and throttled the accelerator. The jet engines roared in response as the plane took off at even greater speed. The pilot clearly knew there was nothing that he could do and escaping the situation was his best option. Too bad that I was not about to let him flee to fight another day.

I spun around in mid-air and flew off to chase after the jet. While the fighter was fast, I was faster. My lithe form and immeasurable power quickly allowed me to close the gap to the fleeing fighter jet. The fighter jet had twin jet engines blowing flame from the back. A news report that I would see later about the Battle for Aleppo would identify the aircraft as a Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-25. Cold War surplus sold to the Syrian government by Russia. However, what surprised the military analysts who spoke in interviews was that the jet could fly over Mach 2.83, but I was able to quickly cover that distance to catch up with the aircraft.

I flew up to the engines of the aircraft as its tried to flee and grabbed onto the top area right between the engines. The heat from the turbines washed over me harmlessly. My fingers dug into the metal until they firmly grabbed onto the engines. The pilot was clearly having none of this, and gunned the engines even further. I felt my body heating up as the engines literally tried to cook me. However, my invulnerable skin was completely immune to its warm caresses. I used my flying powers to slowly pull backwards on the plane and slow it down. The pilot did not waste any time and ejected out of the aircraft. I let him go, but smiled at what I was about to do.

Digging my fingers deeper into the engines, I pulled my arms apart. The gap created by my hands only increased in size. My muscles pulsed with energy and strength. I loved the sensation of this jet fighter struggling to resist me. Struggling to escape from my powerful grasp. With a powerful tug and grunt, I ripped my arms away from each other and tore the jet completely in half. The rear end of the jet tore away in separate directions while the front of the jet freed itself as shot forward like an out of control missile. The ripped apart engines tore themselves into pieces as they flew through the air and back to Earth. I unleashed a torrent of energy from my eyes onto the frontal remains of the fighter jet, which erupted into a fiery explosion.

While I would have liked to enjoy my handiwork more, I had a city and photojournalist to save at the moment. I looked up at the pilot who was floating back to Earth on his parachute. I gave me a wave and a smile before turning back towards Aleppo. The pilot seemed completely unsure of what to do, and actually gave me a somewhat half-hearted wave back. I think he was just grateful that I did not fly over and cut his parachute.

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I flew back to Aleppo. The two fighter jets were taken out of the picture. I could only hope that their loss would keep people from deploying more of them. I needed to find Jimmy Olsen before anything happened to him. Assuming nothing had already happened to him. However, I was certainly getting the attention of all the fighters in the area. If they had not seen or heard me on the ground, then my little dogfight with two fighter jets almost certainly did the trick.

“HEY! POWER GIRL!” I heard being shouted as I neared the city center. I scanned the area to identify where the voice was coming from. I quickly spotted two men standing on the rooftop of a three-story building just south of the city center. My super vision zoomed in on the two individuals to see that they were clearly journalists. One was Jimmy Olsen while another man of Middle Eastern descent was holding a video camera. Both were wearing vests stuffed with camera equipment, and anything else a photojournalist working in a combat zone would need.

“Hey!” Jimmy yelled as I floated down to the rooftop where he and his cameraman were. The cameraman was extremely dedicated to his profession. He quickly had his camera turned on and pointing straight at me as I landed. My graceful landing on the rooftop would become one of the iconic videos of my arrival into the world stage. Jimmy was covered in dirt and smelled like he had not bathed in a week. The cameraman looked equally haggard.

I could not help but smile, “Jimmy!” I ran over and gave Jimmy Olsen a large hug. “I heard that you were in trouble.”

Jimmy put on his best smile, but it did little to hide the pain and fear that he was feeling, “We were. We got captured by ISIL forces while trying to escape after they took over the city. The building that we were being held in got shelled by someone. We escaped in the chaos, but things are just getting crazier.”

“Tell me about it. I never imagined that it was so bad here.”

“It is part of the Syrian government’s big offensive. Fighting further south left Aleppo vulnerable to ISIL who seized the opportunity and took it. The rebels are desperately trying to take the city back, and the Syrian government is using this as an opportunity to reclaim the city. If the rebels can’t retake Aleppo, it will be a major blow to their movement.”

As interesting as this was, I could not sit around here forever with Jimmy. I asked, “Where were you trying to get to? I can take both of you there.”

Jimmy answered me, “Ideally out of the city, but that was too dangerous with the fighting. We were trying to get to the Citadel to find better shelter. However, since you arrived here, things are only getting crazier. I think each side believes that you are working for the other.”

I turned my hearing up, and could hear the shouting and yells getting closer. Jimmy was not wrong; a lot of people and vehicles were heading this way from all sides. I grabbed Jimmy’s shoulders as I yelled over the increasing noise, “I have to get you to safety!”

Jimmy snaked out of my grip, “Screw that! If we leave, then ISIL, rebels, and government forces will turn this city of a wasteland. Every civilian who has been trapped here will die! You can’t leave them!”

I knew Jimmy was right. Superman tried not to get involved in these affairs so that long-term solutions could be found. But I was here right now. I scanned the rest of the city with my x-ray vision. Jimmy was not wrong. There were pockets of scared civilians hiding all over the city in buildings or self-made bomb shelters. Most were clearly starving and terrified. I could not abandon these people. I turned back to Jimmy to see that his camera man was still recording me. “Alright, I’ll stop this. But you two need to get to safety!”

Jimmy nodded, “No problem.” Jimmy turned around, and grabbed the cameraman by the arm. “Come on, David, let’s find a good vantage … I mean … hiding spot.”

Jimmy and his cameraman David ran back into building. The building itself was mostly intact. While I could grab both and fly them out of the city, I also knew that I would be fighting them the whole time. I would also be a giant target while in the air with two very vulnerable humans in my arms. With the sound of soldiers and vehicles fast approaching, the best solution right now was to stand and fight. With the grace of a cat, I jump over the edge of the roof and landed on the street below. The street itself was clearly a major artery through the city with its wide road designed to host a lot of traffic.

I turned to look down the street, and saw a tank come around a corner from about two blocks down. It was painted in a desert colors and had a Syrian flag in the turret. It looked modern, but I had no idea what kind. I would later learn that it was a Russian-made T-90A Main Battle Tank.  The tank looked massive to me at a solid 7 feet tall and 12 feet wide. The thing had to weigh around 50 tons with all of that steel. Following the tank was over a dozen soldiers carrying a variety of weapons. I walked over to the middle of the street, and stood there in a power pose as the tank turned towards me. It rumbled down the street at a leisurely pace as the turret twisted to point in my direction. The tank fired off a quick round from its main cannon, but the shell went wild and struck a building behind me. I turned to look at where the shell landed, and saw the cameraman standing far behind me while filming.

I yelled at him, “What are you doing? Get the hell out of here!”

The cameraman backed up and ran back towards one of the buildings. I turned back to see that the tank had fixed its aim with the barrel pointing directly at me as it roared down the street. The main cannon fired again, but this time the shell hit its mark. I braced myself for the impact as I saw the shell racing towards me. I could have dodged it using my super speed, but I did not want to risk where the shell would go. I resumed my power pose with my hands on my hips while my cape fluttered in the light breeze. The shell impacted me dead center in my chest. I felt the steel of the shell impact just above my cleavage. The shell compressed and exploded as it impacted against my invulnerable chest. Heat and shrapnel from the explosion washed over me. It felt good actually. Better than those grenades and bullets. I was enveloped in smoke from the explosion, but stood there waiting for it to clear. I could hear the tank come to a stop, but the footsteps from the soldiers continued. They were clearly taking up positions around the tank, and probably hoping that it had just done their job for them.

I decided that waiting for the smoke to clear was taking too long. I tried a different approach. I had seen Superman do this on the news, but had never tried to do it myself. I pursed my lips, and began to inhale. Not hard enough to suck the tank and soldiers over to me, but with enough force to begin pulling the smoky air into my mouth. The taste was much to be desired, but I could feel the air compressing into my lungs. Within seconds, the smoke filled my lungs and cleared the air around me like a powerful vacuum was in use. As I finished, I exhaled normally through my nose. Kryptonians must have some kind of filtering system in their lungs. The amount of smoke that left my nostrils was a fraction of what I inhaled. I could only guess that I looked like someone exhaling after taking a puff from a cigarette.

I had to suppress a laugh at the look on each of the soldiers’ faces. They were clearly shocked that I was still standing there. One of the men screamed something in Arabic, and the others opened fire with their machine guns. Bullets began to fly everywhere. Some missed me entirely; some bounced harmlessly off my body. I began to walk towards the tank and soldiers with a smirk on my face. The tank fired again with its main cannon, and made another impact against me. This time the shell landed right on my belly, but that had no different effect that before. As I was surrounded in smoke, I broke into a run at normal speed towards the tank and soldiers. They did not let up on their firing, and two even threw grenades in my path. I batted one grenade out of the air as it got close, which only caused it to explode in my open palm. The other grenade did equally little damage to me as I closed the distance on the tank.

The tank fired for a fourth time towards me, but this time I decided to do something different. Using my super speed, I watched as time slowed as the tank shell flew towards me. It looked like a very large bullet among the countless other rounds floating in the air in my general direction. I stepped to the side, and reached out as the tank shell slowly flew past me. I grabbed the shell from the air, and held it in one hand as time resumed its normal state around me. To the soldiers around me, I was a quick blur of motion as the tank shell raced towards me. The next thing they saw was a brunette woman with short blonde hair in a while leotard with red cape holding the fired tank shell in her right hand.

I held the shell up for all of them to see. Some even stopped firing as they watched. I continued to walk towards the tank, and slowly squeezed my hand on the shell. It screamed in protest as it slowly deformed in my hand. One of the soldiers, probably the smart one, got up from his position, threw his gun to the ground, and just started running away as fast as possible. The bent and deformed shell finally ignited in my hand and exploded harmlessly in my grip. I took my hand and licked some of the remaining residue off my palm. The tank fired a fifth time. However, this time I grabbed the shell and threw it towards the largest cluster of men. The explosion sent the bodies of three men flying in all directions. They were in no position to keep fighting when they hit the ground. Two more men decided this was not their fight, and began to high tail it away. The soldier that gave the orders earlier began to run towards me. He was clearly more brave than smart.

As he ran towards me, he held out his pistol and fired at me. The one or two bullets that actually hit did nothing just like the tank shell. When he got into range, I grabbed him, lifted him off the ground with one hand, and then tossed his body towards the third floor of a building across the street. He screamed throughout the short trip, but the impact against the building’s concrete made a crunching sound before he fell back to the street. This was clearly it for the remaining soldiers. They dropped their weapons, and began running for the nearest hill to hide behind. However, the tank seemed to be having more courage in the matter. The tank revved its engines, and pulled out towards me as fast as its treads would allow it. I sprinted the final feet towards the tank, and brought my fist down hard on its front. The metal screamed in protest as the back half of the tank lifted off the ground, and I left a fist sized dent in the front of the vehicle.

I jumped onto the tank next to the large steel barrel. The machine gun on the top of the tank immediately opened fire on me. These bullets had a lot more force and power than the machine guns used by the soldiers, but did equally little to me other than a tingling in more private parts of my chest. I had to laugh as I saw the large bullets strike my super tits with enough force to dimple them, but then my invulnerable skin and muscles took over causing them to bouncing harmlessly away. My ears rang with loud pings as some of the bullets ricocheted back to the tank’s armor. I grabbed the barrel of the tank’s main cannon, and began to pull it upwards. The muscles on my arms danced as my hands worked their magic against the hard steel. The barrel screamed as it bent upwards in ways that the designers never envisioned. I got the barrel to a good 45-degree curve before I felt any further would snap it off. However, no shells would be fired from this tank in the future. The machine gun continued to fire, but I took my right arm and backhanded the machine gun as hard as I could. The gun actually shattered by the force of my blow like someone punching a window.

I hopped off the moving tank as it continued to hustle down the road at increasing speed. I put my hands out, and grabbed hold of the ruined front end. I dug my feet into the ground while pushing back against the tank. My feet dug deep trenches in the asphalt of the road. However, the tank slowed and eventually stopped moving despite its treads moving at top speed. Dust and dirt clouds were billowing up as the tank uselessly tried to move forward. I reached down under the tank, and lifted the front of up. As the tank rose up, the moving treads caused it to surge forward with the threat of it driving over me. I let go of the front, and grabbed the nearest tread. A quick pull of my hand ripped the tread right out of the tank. I changed hands, and quickly did the same to the other tread. This now useless treads spun off the tank leaving it completely unable to move. I heard some shouts in Arabic as three members of the tank crew opened hatches, and scrambled to get out. I put both hands under the tank, and walked them towards the middle. One of the tank crew members fell off the vehicle onto the ground, and looked at me in shock. I must have been an amazing sight to see. There I was as he laid on the ground, looking at me, while I now held this 50-ton monster above my head with both hands. After lifting things in the kilotons at the Fortress of Solitude, this 50-ton vehicle might have well been a paperweight.

I winked at the soldier. He scrambled to get up, and took off running at top speed back where his friends had fled to. I took a step forward, and threw the tank in his direction. The vehicle sailed through the air, and flew directly over the fleeing soldier’s head. It smashed directly into the second floor of a building a good 150 feet away from me. However, the tank acted more like a flying cannon ball to the building. It smashed through the building, and came out the other side on the opposite street. That was the final straw for the tank as it exploded violently after impacting the ground. The building crumpled into rubble after being completely compromised by the tank. The soldier stopped, looked back at me as I smiled at him, and then ran off in a different direction.

That was one tank squad out of the way. How many were left? My answer soon came as two smaller tanks rolled around corners behind me. They looked older than the one that I just fought. I was later told that there were classic T-55 tanks from the good ‘ole days of the Soviet Union. However, these did not appear to have a squad of soldiers behind them. Both tanks fired at me, but both shells missed me as they hit the street behind me. I needed to end this soon. I could not stay here and fight both armies entirely. At least, not if I wanted Jimmy to live through this.

I broke into a run towards the tanks, and kicked it up a notch with a burst of super speed. I smashed into the first tank hard completely denting the front with an imprint of my shoulder and part of my chest. I climbed onto the top of the tank, and grabbed hold of the turret itself. My fingers easily dug into the steel, penetrating it to get a good grip. As the turret of the second tank began to slowly turn towards me, I pulled with my arms and felt the turret get completely ripped off the tank. Steel was no match for this superwoman. No. This Power Girl!

I held the turret in my hands as the frightened tank crew looked up at me. I quickly adjusted my grip on the turret so that I held it by the barrel. Before the barrel could even begin to deform from the weight imbalance, I swung the turret down like a hammer into the other tank with as much force that I could muster without tearing the turret in my hands apart. The hammer/turret came down hard on the other tank. The tank buckled and bent inwards as the metal succumbed to my force. However, I did not have much time to gloat at my action since the second tank erupted in an explosion that blew me off the first tank. My body hit the wall of a nearby building, and blasted through it. The tank that I was standing on was ripped apart by the explosion as well. I got up from the second floor of the building that I was in, and looked outside onto the street. I could hear more soldiers coming, but I had gained a bit of a breather for the time being. I had to end this fighting. As I tried to figure out how, I heard the incoming screams of artillery shells. They missed where I was, but I could hear screams of soldiers crying out in Arabic that were hit. I had to pick a side, and let them handle this mess.

Superman was right. Despite all of my power, one person could not solve all of the world’s problems. I could destroy both armies. Declare this place the Free City of Aleppo under my rule and protection. But then what? Rule this city like a queen? Declare my own nation? Take over all of Syria? This city was a shell of its former self and in total anarchy. There was no police force to keep people safe. There were no food imports to help people eat. No power. No running water. Sure, I could stay here and try to fix all of their problems. But what about Superior Girl? What about all the other cities that need my help? As much as it pained me, I had to let the people of Syria deal with this problem. However, I could at least help end the current fighting for the city.

I took off into the sky, bursting through the walls of the destroyed building. I flew high above the city, and could clearly see the array of forces stationed outside the city. My first target was the artillery that kept shelling the city. The Syrian government’s artillery units were setup a few miles east of the city. I flew towards them as fast as possible. I hovered in the air above the artillery units laid out neatly in rows with their crews surrounding the vehicles. I unleashed my heat vision on the first unit, and then crossed over to each one as it violently exploded. The work crews surrounding the vehicles scattered without even putting up a fight. Within seconds, the neatly arranged artillery units of the Syrian Army was a smoking mass of twisted, burnt, and melted metal. I turned back towards the city, and scanned the forces arrayed on the city’s eastern border. After a few minutes of searching, I spotted what appeared to be the central encampment for the Syrian government’s military just outside the airport.

Arcing my back, I zoomed towards the cluster of vehicles and tents that appeared to form the heart of the army’s command structure. The main communications hub was not hard to miss with all of the satellite dishes and antennae sticking out next to the large tent. I landed hard at the front entrance, blowing a wave of sand through the area. The guards at the entrance tried to pull their guns towards me, but I quickly grabbed the weapons and crushed them. I then threw the soldiers into nearby tents, and pushed my way into the main communications tent.

The tent itself was massive with several workstations setup with various computers, radios, and other equipment lining the walls. In the center was a large table with maps and small models arrayed on it. The map was that of the city of Aleppo so I suspected the small models were supposed to represent the positions of each side’s armies. Based on their map, their forces had penetrated far into the city, but the Syrian Opposition Forces were deep inside as well. Based on my own experience inside the city, I would say that Jimmy was closer to the Syrian government forces. The soldiers manning the workstations all stopped what they were doing and looked at me. Around the table stood half a dozen men in crisp uniforms with markings that clearly showed them as high-ranking officers. They all looked at me with a combination of shock and fear in their eyes. No doubt, they had been hearing what I had been doing in the city.

One of the soldiers got out of their chairs by a workstation and reached for their side arm, before he could even get it out of the holster, one of the high-ranking officers held up his hand to him, shouting “La! La! La!” I can only assume that meant No in Arabic as the soldier stopped what he was doing, and looked at the officer for direction.

I stepped towards the table, and asked “Do any of you speak English?”

One of the officers with an impressive mustache looked at me and responded with a moderately thick accent, “Yes, I speak English.”

I looked directly at him, and gave him the best “bitch face” that I could muster. “Tell your men to pull out of the city, and retreat from this area. Go home.”

The officer smiled at me, and simply said “We are home.”

I clearly had to make an example. I brought my fist down on the table, which was smashed to pieces by the force of my blow. The map was ripped apart, and models of their deployed forces flew all over the tent. I reached across the area where the table had been, and grabbed one of the other officers. I lifted him off the ground by his shirt collar with one hand. My eyes glowed red as I prepared to use my heat vision on him. Soldiers ran in from outside and aimed their rifles at me. One of the other officers saw the soldiers, and began yelling at them in Arabic. He was clearly panicked that his own men were about to try and gun all of us down.

“I said. Go. Home. Aleppo belongs to the Resistance.”

This clearly rattled the English-speaking officer who stopped smiling immediately. “Yes! Yes! We agree! I will tell our forces to pull out of the city, and we will retreat back to government-held territory.”

Still holding the soldier, “I will kill any government soldier that has not left the area by sunset. You will also tell your leaders that humanitarian flights will be welcome for the city.”

“But we can’t …”

I turned to the officer with my burning red eyes, “If humanitarian aid is not allowed in this city, I will fly to Damascus and burn the entire city to the ground. If your government attacks Aleppo again, I will fly to Damascus and burn it to the ground. Do you understand?”

“Yes. We understand.” The officer was clearly nervous after hearing what I would do.

“Will you obey?”

“Yes. We will obey.” The officer sounded beaten. He knew that my threat was not an empty one.

I dropped the officer that I was holding, and turned to walk out of the tent. The soldiers kept their guns trained on me at the door. Before they could react, I snatched the rifles out of their hands. I twisted each rifle apart, and the tossed it towards the officers.

The English-speaking officer stepped forward as he looked at the ruined rifles and then back to me, “Who are you?”

“I’m Power Girl!”

I walked past the soldiers and through the tent’s entrance. As they watched, I then took off into the sky and flew over to the camp of the Syrian Opposition Forces. They took a little more persuasion regarding my abilities, but I made sure not to do too much permanent damage. However, they quickly agreed to my terms when they learned that I had just handed the city of Aleppo to them. All they had to do was clean out any remaining ISIL forces. Humanitarian aid would arrive in the city soon, and the Syrian government would stay away from the city to allow it some room to breathe. It felt like the best solution that I could do under present circumstances. The Syrian Civil War would continue, but at least there was a temporary safe haven for civilians trapped in this horror.

====================

I flew back to where Jimmy had been hiding. By now the fighting sounded as it had mostly stopped, a view from above clearly showed that Syrian government forces were pulling out of the city. I landed in the street, and spotted Jimmy looking around. His cameraman spotted me before Jimmy did, but Jimmy told him to stop filming after I landed. They both walked over to me.

Jimmy spoke first, “Fighting appears to have stopped. Your doing?”

“The Syrian Army is pulling out of the area. They will allow the Opposition Forces to take back Aleppo, and leave the city alone in the future. The Resistance has agreed to make this city a safe haven for refugees and other civilians.”

Jimmy whooped in joy at the news, “That is so good to hear. I can’t tell you how much the people stuck here will thank you for this.”

“I am just glad that you are safe. Both of you.”

“It was touch and go there for a while. A few of those bullets came close to home.”

I looked directly at the cameraman. “Yeah, did not help that your cameraman was standing right in the middle of the street.” The cameraman looked sheepishly at me and then the ground at my remarks.

Jimmy intervened, “Yeah, it was stupid.” He turned to David. “Dave, why don’t you go try and find some of those incoming Syrian Opposition Forces. You are the Arabic speaker here, after all. Also, get some shots of those tanks that Power Girl destroyed.”

David finally spoke, “Sure, Jimmy.” He nodded his head towards me, but could not seem to keep his eyes off my chest. “Pleasure meeting you, ma’am.” David then turned to walk north down the street.

I turned to Jimmy once David was clearly out of sight. “Is he one of your … friends?”

Jimmy looked back towards where David had been, “No, David is with one of the major cable news networks. The reporter that he was working with was killed a week ago when ISIL infiltrated the city. We had both been on the run in this city since trying to find a way out.”

“Won’t he ask questions about me coming to save you?”

“No,” Jimmy shook his head as he spoke, “I told him that I had sent a call for help shortly before being captured. He was just expecting Superman instead of you.”

“Yeah. Let’s just say that Superman is tending to an unwanted guest right now so I came instead.”

“Too many eyes, huh?”

“You could say that. Superman wanted to keep you away as far away from Superior Girl as possible. She can be unpredictable if she wanted to make an example of someone.”

Jimmy nodded his head, “Yeah, I have heard that she can be a pretty scary bitch when she does not get her way.”

I smiled back at Jimmy at his assessment of Superior Girl, “Were you filming the fight that I was having in the streets?”

Jimmy smiled back at me like someone who just won the lottery, “You mean, the part where you took on three tanks and won?”

I could not help laughing, “Yes. Did your cameraman record any of that?”

“Are you kidding? He got the whole thing. I even got some choice images from my own camera as well.”

“I want you to release them.”

Jimmy seemed surprised about my remark, “But I thought …”

I held up my hands before Jimmy could go any further, “I know. If this truce with Aleppo is going to hold, then people need to see me in action. Otherwise, the threats that I made to their generals won’t be considered too threatening without video evidence to back it up.”

Jimmy thought about this for a moment, and nodded his head in agreement. “Ok, we will get this to the networks as soon as possible. Got any idea what we should call you?”

I struck a power pose in front of Jimmy, “Let’s stick with Power Girl!”

Jimmy laughed at the name, “Ha. Too bad no one will be able to know how I originally suggested that name to you. Power Girl, it is.”

I smiled at how Jimmy was amused at my choice in names. I leaned in close to him, and grabbed him under his armpits. I effortlessly lifted Jimmy off the ground so that he was looking directly into my eyes. I leaned in, and gave him a kiss on the lips. Jimmy clearly wanted more from his reaction. I smiled as I pulled away, and let him drop back down to the ground. He fell a full foot since I had slowly lifted off the ground as we kissed. I hovered above him for a moment before saying “Come find me in California.” I then took off into the sky, leaving Jimmy Olsen in the newly freed city of Aleppo.

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